Welcome to the final dev blog post for the year! I hope everyone had an excellent 2019 – and if you didn’t, let’s look forward to next year instead. Keep an eye out for tomorrow’s New Year’s Eve roundup where I’ll discuss what’s in store for Thylacine Studios in 2020!
In this post, we’ll take a look at how Artifacts work in Siralim Ultimate. While their core functionality remains the same as in the previous Siralim games, Artifacts come with a lot of quality of life improvements in Ultimate that should make them feel drastically different from before.
Forging an Artifact
The first step to acquiring an Artifact is to forge one at the blacksmith.
This is the only way to obtain an Artifact in Siralim Ultimate. In previous games, you could sometimes find them in treasure chests and other sources of loot, but that idea didn’t really work out very well in the end. Players ended up with hundreds of pages of useless Artifacts in their inventories, which made inventory management a total nightmare. Aside from that, it caused some serious performance issues when players refused to ever salvage their Artifacts. I always wanted Artifacts to have a “Diablo” feel to them, with the hope that you’d stumble across a really powerful Artifact with just the right properties to suit your needs… but Siralim is a bit too complex for that type of system to work out in the end. For that reason, I have decided to make Artifacts a “craft-only” item in Siralim Ultimate.
You’ll start by choosing from 1 of 5 different types of Artifacts to craft: Swords, Staves (Staffs), Shields, Boots, and Helmets. The type of Artifact you choose determines its first property, much like it did in the previous games. Each Artifact corresponds to a different stat:
- Swords boost Attack.
- Staves boost Intelligence.
- Shields boost Defense.
- Boots boost Speed.
- Helmets boost Health.
The type of Artifact you choose also determines something else, but I’ll explain more about that in the next section.
Upgrading an Artifact
Artifacts now have something called a “Tier”. Each Artifact will start at Tier 1, and you can upgrade them to a maximum of Tier 50 by spending resources at the blacksmith. Here’s what this new Tier system does:
- Every few Tiers, your Artifact will gain a new “slot”. You can add a property to these slots which makes the Artifact more powerful. There are many different types of slots:
- Stat Slots are the most basic, and grant boosts to creature stats such as Attack and Defense. Each Artifact starts with one of these slots.
- Trick Slots are a little more advanced, and grant your Artifacts all kinds of interesting effects such as a chance to debuff an enemy when your creatures attack.
- Trait Slots grant your creature a new trait.
- Spell Slots allow you to socket a Spell Gem into the Artifact. This spell has a chance to be cast automatically under certain conditions. The type of Artifact you chose determines how the spell will be cast. For example, Swords give your creatures a chance to cast the spell when they attack, while Shields give your creatures a chance to cast the spell when they defend. In other words, Spell Slots replace the “Awakening” system from Siralim 3.
- Each Tier determines the potency of all the Artifact’s properties. For example, a Tier 1 Artifact with the “Chance to Inflict Fear On Hit” might have a 15% chance for this effect to occur, but the chance might go up to 30% by the time an Artifact reaches Tier 20. In other words, this system replaces the blacksmith’s “Reforging” function from previously games, effectively removing the frustrating, random nature of Artifacts and giving players a steadier sense of progression.
- Every 10 Tiers, your Artifact’s icon will change to make it look a bit more prestigious and powerful.
Socketing an Artifact
While the enchanter handled the process of adding new properties to Artifacts in previous games, the blacksmith will be your go-to NPC for all things related to Artifacts in Siralim Ultimate. For that reason, the concept of “Enchanting” has been renamed to “Socketing”, and is now performed at the blacksmith. This system works exactly the same way as in previous Siralim games: you’ll bring an Artifact to the blacksmith, select a property slot you’d like to add a property to, and as long as you have enough resources and materials, that property will be added to your Artifact. Easy enough.
One interesting thing to note is that all crafting materials have unique icons now. Believe it or not, this addition to the game makes it feel much more rewarding when you find materials in treasure chests and other sources of loot.
Unsocketing an Artifact
As you can probably guess, “Unsocketing” allows you to remove a property from an Artifact. This functionality works the same way as it did in Siralim 3, except it is now performed at the blacksmith.
Branding an Artifact
Just like in Siralim 3, you can rename your Artifacts in Siralim Ultimate.
Salvaging an Artifact
You can salvage your unwanted Artifacts and receive some resources in exchange for them. I’m not sure if this feature will stay in the game for release, though, because I have a feeling you’re not going to have too many unwanted Artifacts since you won’t be finding them in the wild anymore.
The Fate of Itherian Artifacts
Itherian Artifacts are gone. It was really difficult to tell if an Artifact contained an “Itherian Trait” or not, and obviously, they wouldn’t work well with the new system anyway. In their place, you can now find legendary crafting materials that don’t correspond to a creature. In other words, the spirit of Itherian Artifacts will remain intact, but they’ll be less frustrating and more rewarding when you find them.
Q. [Artifacts] There were 20+ types of Artifacts in Siralim 3. Why did you remove so many of them in Siralim Ultimate?
A. Such a large number of Artifact types was simply unnecessary. It led to an overwhelming number of options, and caused the loot table to feel cluttered as well. Now, your Artifacts will start out feeling pretty basic, and will grow in complexity over time as you learn more about the game. Aside from that, limiting the amount of Artifact types opens up some interesting design space for trait and spell interaction. For example, a certain trait might empower Boots, incentivizing players to consider giving all their creatures Boots.
Q. [Artifacts] If I unsocket a material from an Artifact, do I get to keep the material?
Q. [Fusion] If I fuse two creatures together, can I fuse the offspring with another creature and continue fusing over and over again?
A. No. You can’t fuse a creature that has already been fused before.
Please note that nothing mentioned in this blog post is finalized. I reserve the right to change or remove anything mentioned in this post at any time. If you’re reading this post after the game has already launched, your best bet is to forget everything you just read because very few of the things I write about will remain untouched in the final product.