Valve has been in a tricky place with Artifact following its launch. While many are still pushing for the game to go free to play, Valve is sticking to its $20/£15 price point and is focussed on adding more value for that money. This started with an in-game way to earn new card packs via levelling and at some point, we’ll also be getting a single-player mode.
The latest Artifact patch began rolling out yesterday and it has already been datamined. Amongst strings for VR, a new version of the game built on Unity (likely for the mobile launch) and Steam Achievements, references to a new single-player mode were discovered. The most interesting part is that these single-player card battles are already playable in game via console commands.
ValveNewsNetwork (seen above) was the first to break the news in a video posted earlier today. Artifact’s single-player mode will be called ‘Puzzle mode’ and will feed players Dota lore as they take a single deck through a round of challenging bot matches. Different variables will come into play the further along you go, including changes to card draw, hero deployment, mana regeneration etc. The structure sounds similar to the way Elder Scrolls Legends handles its single-player side, or even Hearthstone’s different adventure modes.
The actual story content can’t be viewed in-game just yet. However, if you dig through the Artifact files, you can find each of the puzzle levels. If you enable console commands and type in ‘load_puzzle’ followed by a number, you will be able to play the match.
Communication on the Artifact front has slowed down significantly since December. However, it looks like the development team is still hard at work on the next card set, the mobile version and future content. Hopefully some of this stuff arrives sooner rather than later, because right now, Artifact is struggling to boost player numbers.
KitGuru Says: Artifact continues to be my favourite card game to date but I’m hoping we can get some faster updates throughout 2019. Did any of you happen to pick up Artifact at launch? Or are you waiting and hoping for an eventual switch to free to play?