After a long wait and a private beta experienced only by a select few players, Artifact will finally enter closed public beta next week. If you've been sitting on a game key for the last few months, this will be your chance to get a taste of the game ahead of the official launch on 29th November.
When the games does launch it'll feature an event known as Call to Arms. This provides all players with the opportunity to sample a number of different, powerful decks across a number of the game's launch modes.
In this article we've outlined everything we currently know about Call to Arms, although it goes without saying it'll be expanded upon considerably once the beta is underway. We'll also continue updating it through the launch window and beyond.
Still, this should hopefully give you a good grounding in what to expect from the event ahead of time, and we'll have another update for you as soon as there's some new information to work with.
When you're done here, take a look at our comprehensive Artifact guide. It contains everything you need to know about getting started with this complex new card game.
Call to Arms Gauntlets
Artifact features a gameplay mode called Gauntlets. Some are free to enter, while others require you to purchase Event Tickets (sold in bundles of five for $4.95). You also receive a handful of Event Tickets as part of the $20 preorder bundle.
There will be a number of Gauntlets at launch, each one of which challenges you to win a certain number of matches before you're eliminated for accruing too many losses.
By reaching certain milestones in Gauntlets, you can earn more Event Tickets and card packs, although you'll only receive these rewards by participating in paid-for Gauntlets. There's nothing up for grabs except bragging rights in the free editions.
Gauntlets cycle in and out of rotation, with different rulesets in place for different Gauntlets that are released by Valve. For more information on this game mode, take a look at our comprehensive Artifact Gauntlet guide.
- During the launch event, there will be a special Casual (free) Gauntlet, called Call to Arms Preconstructed. This is based on the recent PAX event, where players chose one of six preconstructed decks, and then played against other competitors at the show using the same pool of decks.
- The objective in this launch Gauntlet is to achieve the longest win-streak you can before incurring a loss.
- You don't need to own any of the cards in this roster of decks - they're all provided free of charge for the duration of the Call to Arms event.
- Although all other launch Gauntlets work on the win-5-before-you-lose-2 format, a single loss in Call to Arms Preconstructed will end your current run.
We'll have a list of the preconstructed deck lists for you in a future update to this article.
Call to Arms Tournaments
As well as participating in the Call to Arms Gauntlet, it will also be possible to participate in player-created tournaments that make use of the same preconstructed decks.
Custom tournaments are free to create, but there are again no prizes for winning or costs for taking part (or Valve has said there won't be at launch, at least).
Our Artifact Tournament guide contains more detail about this side of the game, but in simple terms the system allows you to set a number of parameters around tournament length and elimination formats.