Do you know Dota 2 Artifact? Is it worth playing? Why did it fail so hard?
What is Dota 2 Artifact?
Dota 2 Artifact is a card game that you can get on Steam, it includes many features of Dota 2, such as heroes, items, abilities, and characters and is inspired by Dota 2 custom maps. The main thing that differentiates the Artifact from the MOBA version is that instead of the realtime Dota 2 map, players have cardboards.
Dota 2 Artifact is an official game of Valve, it was released on November 28, 2018, and it includes 280 cards and 44 heroes. The numbers will increase over time. Artifact is not playable for free, lifetime access costs $19.99.
Gamemode and Game Basics of Dota 2 Artifact:
In Artifact, each player gets a team of five, it replicates the MOBA version of Dota 2. Each card has unique and powerful abilities. You have to defeat two towers of each wave to win the match. Artifact has epic and satisfying graphics that no other card game has. No doubt, Valve never disappoints its users in terms of graphics.However, all other features of Artifact did not go well. Valve has never faced a failure with the Dota 2 title in its life until Artifact came. Artifact is the one, and the only shortcoming of Valve with many embarrassing features that led it to failure.
5 Reasons why Dota 2 Artifact Failed:
After the release of Artifact within one week, it lost 60% of its users. Of course, the total number of users was also few at the start and from that few 60% left. It was a complete disaster for Valve, and maybe it was a lesson for Valve that only fascinating graphics are not enough for the success of a new game.
1. Artifact is too expensive for the most Dota 2 Players:
Dota 2 is a free to play game, and it is understood that mostly Dota players are aware of Artifact.The first wrong step Valve took, was the overvalued price tag, why players should buy a small game for $19.99 when they can play its complete version for free forever?
This price tag changed the minds of 50% of the Dota community, No doubt, Artifact has impressive graphics, but not everybody is interested in watching graphics for $19.99. Instead of generating revenue, Artifact generated an immense amount of disappointment and criticism.
According to many Artifact reviewers, the monetization strategy of Dota 2 is way better than Artifact. With Dota 2 Valve can make money through in-game items, events, etc. In the case of Artifact Valve is demanding $19.99 just for the installation of Artifact and it only comes with ten booster packs. Yes! If you want more powerful cards, then you have to pay more. Even participation in the online marketplace also costs a few dollars.
On the other hand, players can experience the same concept of the game in Dota 2 for free then, why should they spend a massive amount of money on Artifact? The daily users of Artifact were 940 to 1368 in the first few months, and this is what we call a disaster.
2. Artifact is super Complex: Is it a Game or about Mathematics?
Many Artifact users face one common problem, they do not understand the gameplay of Artifact. It is extremely hard to guess – even after playing it 10-12 times. It’s just a very deep game which is determined to attract people who enjoy complexity! Valve already minimized its audience by putting a huge price tag on Artifact. Maybe it was not enough for them, so they reduced the audience again and only left it for the players that like super complex games – that means all Dota 2 beginner players are excluded anyway!
Due to complexity, even streamers are avoiding this game because who will stream for 10- 20 viewers? Players are not interested in watching games that they do not understand. The most twitch viewers want soft casual entertainment that is easy to get. 😉
3. It takes a Decade to find a match in Artifact
Dota 2 has a vast audience but in the matchmaking, it already takes 3 to 5 minutes to find a match. In Dota 2 Artifact the audience is much smaller: It takes a huge amount of time to play one single game. Will you wait 5-15 minutes on finding a match?
4. The Gameplay of Dota 2 Artifact is Boring
Randomness is the one thing that makes a card game interesting. It is not a die-hard rule, and it is just the nature of the game. The Random Number Generator (RNG) effect creates curves, intensity, and difficulty in the game.
For example, While flipping a coin, you are unaware of the result, but you have to come up with the strategy according to the outcome. On the other hand, a game without randomness is something like a coin with both sides the same, whichever you choose you to know the result.
A card game without RNG is like a game that does not require any strategy the one with the stronger card wins the game. The card generation of Artifact is easily predictable because of its weak RNG effect.
5. The Complexity of the Cardboard
Dota 2 Artifact should reflect the gameplay of Dota 2. However, it reveals something different: During the game, a player has three lanes. Now comes the consuming part, each lane has its cardboard. You can also consider each lane as a separate game. However, each lane generates mana, gold that you can use to buy items, cast spells, and use abilities.You will get five heroes for all three lanes – you can place a hero in any lane. Each hero is summoned/deploy alongside the randomly generated creeps.
Each hero in your loadout has a color, and each color determines that a specific hero can play in a particular lane or not.
The Dota Artifact Hero Colors:
Black indicates the trickery, and blue is about hold/control, green indicates debuff and heal, red is for combat. Sometimes each color can behave differently than its nature, and that’s the main complex feature of Artifact. A player learns one concept of a game, and in the next match, the concept has changed.
The attack and health stats of the five heroes are similar to the creeps. Now here comes the most irritating part: If the health of your card is less than the enemy card then your player will die in one hit. Later on, the creeps will pass and hit the towers. However, the complexity of the game does not end here you can increase the armor of your hero. Moreover, you can get new spells for your heroes. Each hero card has item slots – you can buy items with the help of the gold, and the hero will equip it. Many items give new abilities, here comes the difficulty again. 😀
You have to remember all the benefits of an item and its impacts on your heroes.
Role of Streamers in the Failure of the Dota 2 Artifact:
Popular streamers always stream every new game and compare it with the games they play. As we all know League of Legends is a rival of Dota 2, have you ever seen a die-hard LOL streamer praising Dota 2 features? Straight No! Something similar happened to Artifact, and it’s not the first card game, HearthStone, and Magic is already running in this genre, and their gameplay is way better than Artifact.
If you are playing an excellent game of a genre, will you praise another less popular and less attractive game of the same genre? Almost every popular streamer roasted Artifact and even Dota 2 streamers did not like it. They were not offensive, but the truth is the truth. When there are way better games in the market, why should you go for a less attractive game?
After the release of the Dota 2 Artifact, many players were waiting for reviews before paying the 20 dollars. And of course, if the reviews were good the players would have bought it. Unfortunately, they were not and at that moment Artifact lost more upcoming users.
Reynad, a very respectable and famous steamer also reviewed Dota Artifact (Reynad is currently developing his own card game called The Bazaar). He appraised the strengths of the game, but he also mentioned some of its flaws.
Valve needs some miracle to revive Artifact again otherwise it will become a piece of junk on the Steam marketplace.
What is your opinion about the Dota card game?