It’s possible an Artifact relaunch may not save Valve’s collectible card game.
Dota 2 host, caster, and interviewer, Jake “SirActionSlacks” Kanner has come out to express disappointment over the lack of updates and seeming disregard for the game from developer Valve’s end.
“I think Valve personally thinks that yes, they are going to fix that game and relaunch it… I don’t think it’s gonna happen. I think it’s done,” said Kanner during a What the DUCK!? podcast.
Kanner further questioned Valve’s decision to stall updates and instead go for a major revamp, saying that Valve could have communicated to the community that it was planning fixes instead of staying quiet for three months to only state that it was “working on it”.
Based on the fictional universe of Dota 2, Artifact was designed by Richard Garfield, famous for creating Magic: The Gathering. Since its release on desktop late last year, the game’s playing population has dwindled by at least 95% over the course of two months.
And now, despite plans to release it for Android and iOS within the year, even its remaining hardcore followers are starting to doubt its future. Valve, however, has officially confirmed that the game will undergo a major overhaul, rather than smaller tweaks and balances throughout its system.
Having sold over two million copies, according to SteamDB, it only peaked at well over 60k players, which happened when it launched in late November last year.
The delivery of post-launch updates was dismal, while Valve went on to try and nerf certain cards to retain some semblance of balance in the game, players were still left unsatisfied.
Later updates only featured minor balance tweaks and unnecessary features (such as talking cards), while the same problems that plagued its beta days remained largely unaddressed. Valve was, for the most part, silent about the abysmal state of the game, while its most dedicated players had suggest various measures to address the problems.
Other factors, such as unfair monetization and a lack of social interaction within the game also rankled, but with Valve’s promise to “improve our craft and use that knowledge to build better games,” avid fans of the game like Kanner still hold a glint of hope.