The Artifact Dota Card Game: Are You Entertained?
The Artifact Dota Card Game is a new installment from Valve Corporation. This new trading card game aims to combine different key aspects from the MOBA video game that is based upon. Around half of the roster from Dota 2 is already present with their amazing portraits and abilities. Along with some towers, the ancients and of course, the creeps. It isn’t an exact same copy though, the winning conditions kind of change a little bit here. For instance, although you can destroy the ancient, this is not the only way to win. The other possible way is to destroy two towers from two different lanes. Each tower contains 40 hit points and the Ancient has 80 hit points. So you either focus in one lane and deal 120 damage to the buildings, or you can go for a different route and deal 40 damage between two lanes.
What brings these two video games together is the “momentum.” Just like Dota 2, whatever happens in the middle of the game is what gives us that amazing spark. Heroes fight between the lanes in order to make their presence noted. They use flashy abilities that sometimes change the entire flow of the game. Until victory is achieved and you get to congratulate yourself at the end of the match.
What does Artifact bring to the table?
There are different key mechanics that the contains to differentiate from other card games on the market. Some key elements make this video game a lot more interesting than other games from this genre. For example, long gone is the Wizard vs. Wizard representation in the board. You don’t actually target your enemy’s hitpoints but the different structures he possesses. And talking about the board, oh my! The board. To be precise, the three boards that represent the different lanes in Dota 2. Sometimes it feels like you’re playing three different games at the same time. There may be matches where you’re dominating one or two lanes but the third one is practically abandoned. Here is where the Hero deployment mechanic comes into play. Changing heroes between lanes can keep your structures alive.
Besides the peculiar “Three lanes” board, there are more specific components from Artifact.
Your main Deck is composed of 54 Cards in total. These cards are arranged as follows:
- 5 Cards in the Hero Side Deck
- 9 Cards in the Item Side Deck
- 40 Cards in the Main Deck, which contains 25 cards that can either be Spells, Minions, and Improvements, and15 Signature Cards.
The cards in Artifact are arranged into different Colors that represent essential mechanics from this trading card game:
- Red: High stats, combat manipulation, and crippling debuffs
- Blue: Powerful spells, strong late game, and card draw
- Green: Massive creeps, powerful buffs, and mana acceleration
- Black: Assassination, tower destruction, and money generation
- Yellow: Different Items that assist your heroes in positive ways
- Neutral: Creeps that are generated automatically each turn or by spells
Attributes for Hero Cards
The main focus from all your decks is the Heroes. These are special cards that cannot permanently die. The hero color determines what cards you can play. For example, a Green Hero in the lane can help you cast Green spells in that lane. All the Hero cards have these attributes:
- Attack, Armor, and Health
- Abilities: Passive and active
- Item slots: Weapon, a piece of armor and one accessory
The game is divided into different Game Phases that in order, determine a turn:
- Action (Initiative, Passing): Each player takes short turns to cast different spells on their lanes. These spells aim to alter the outcome in every part of the board.
- Combat: Everything that is present in the lane (heroes or creeps) clash one another in this part of the turn. Once the damage is dealt, the focus changes to another part of the board or lane. If all the lanes have been dealt with, the other phase starts.
- Shopping: You earn gold by killing stuff on the board (1 gold from creeps, 5 gold from heroes). In this phase, a shop appears where you are able to buy items (yellow cards).
- Deployment: In this part of the turn, two creeps are randomly assigned between the three lanes. Afterward, you get to assign a Hero in either part of the board.
- End: When all the decisions are being done. Both players earn one additional point in their mana pools, and everyone draws two cards. The Action Phase starts
Is it really hard to play?
At first, you may feel a bit overwhelmed with all that previous information. But the more you become familiarized with the game, the easier it will get. To take things a little smoother, it’s advisable that you start practicing with a deck that has only the two colors. Get to know the different Game Phases and how the spells work across the board. One of the virtues that Artifact has, comes in the way it’s presented. Being a gaming software means that the program keeps you involved in the game. Targets are displayed when you drag your spells and the phases are clearly represented, which means that you only get to have fun in the game.
How is Esports coming along?
Although the TI version of Artifact is still yet to come. There are other Tournaments that Valve takes advantage to demonstrate their upcoming game. The closest Tournament kicks on November 10th, with a prize pool of $10,000. This event will be hosted by “Beyond the Summit” and it’ll be broadcasted on SteamTV. All these events can give you a great representation of what the Artifact Dota Card Game really is. With 128 amazing players that can showcase amazing mechanics from the game.
After this tournament, there is another coming in December with a prize pool of $25,000. By this time, the game will be available for everyone, which means more competition.
Prepare Your Winning Decks
Just like Dota 2, even though you technically play the same map (board), it never gets old. The Artifact Dota Card Game contains amazing core mechanics that can keep you hooked for a long time. Whether you’re a casual player that spends about two hours each day; or a professional player that aims to earn revenue from the game. Like Dota 2, Valve wants to give a lot of focus in the Esports scene, which in turn is able to attract different players from across the globe. And who knows, maybe soon you’ll have the chance to compete in a prestigious tournament. The chances are limitless.
For more Artifact, check this out: The Artifact Card Game: Hearthstone’s Upcoming Rival