Valve is rolling out beta for its revamped Artifact

Valve is rolling out beta for its revamped Artifact

Valve has announced that it will be holding a beta test for the reworked version of its Artifact Dota collectable card game.

In a post on Steam, the company doesn't give a date as to when this will be rolled out but says that it will be trickling out invites to players in the near future, beginning with folks who played the original version of Artifact. Valve says that selection to take part in this beta will be randomised.

After a while, this will become an open beta with a proper release following in the aftermath.

"We’ve been focusing on gameplay changes first," Valve wrote.

"The biggest change is zooming out to allow players access to all three lanes at once. The majority of effects still work on individual lanes so they still maintain their identity, but it’s less likely that a player will get shut out in the same way they used to.

"We’ve also focused on making the game easier to pick up. We aren’t selling cards, so you won’t face an opponent with a stacked deck. We’ve also added a new draft mode, Hero Draft, that gives you a taste of constructing decks without all the pressure."

This follows Artifact's initial launch in November 2018. Though it saw a high of in the region of 55,000 concurrent players at release, that soon dropped off and the game saw a massive decline in popularity.

The news of a beta follows a post saying that Artifact was now "under construction" last week.

Artifact is the first of a new wave of games development at the Washington-based PC giant, with VR-exclusive title Half-Life: Alyx following last week. One title that Valve isn't really working on is Campo Santo's In the Valley of Gods, which was being developed by the Firewatch maker before its acquisition by the Steam firm.

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.