Artefacts - The Facts
Here is a summary for any players panicking;
What are Artefacts?
Artefacts are a new T3.5 feature to generate some mid-server interest among players and break up the 10 month wait for the Natars. An artefact works similarly to an oasis, where an affect is applied once you have captured it. However these affects are far greater than resource bonuses. Artefacts can increase troop speed, decrease building times, increase scout effectiveness, decrease wheat consumption, etcetera.
Artefacts are also a feature of T4 - no fundamental changes were made to this area of the game.
Intensity of Artefact
There are 87 Artefacts in total; and 8 types with varying effectiveness.
The difference in intensity can be divided into Village Artefact, Account Artefact or Unique Artefact. More detail below:
● Village Artefacts
There are 48 village artefacts; this means the artefact affect is only applied to the village in which it is held.
To capture a Village Artefact, you will need a Level 10 Treasure Chamber.
These have the smallest defence and are placed further away from the center 0/0.
● Account Artefacts
There are 32 account-wide artefacts; this means the artefact affect is applied to ALL villages of that account.
To capture an Account Artefact, you will need a Level 20 Treasure Chamber.
These have a medium sized defence and are placed further away from the center 0/0.
● Unique Artefacts
There are 7 unique artefacts; these are account-wide with an increased bonus applied.
To capture a Unique Artefact, you will need a Level 20 Treasure Chamber.
These have the largest defense, and are placed closest to the center 0/0 so they are widely contested.
There is no unique artefact for Storage.
Map of Artefact locations from s1 2010/2011 (link)
A more comprehensive guide by Fhuaran can be found here.
The defence in each artefact village is calculated in relation to the Top100 armies on the server so defence reports can only be used as a rough guide. For example, the defence on ukx servers is much higher than on normal speed servers. The defence between uk servers isn't reasonably consistent (+/- 10% or so). However, on domains with a lot more, or a lot less players, there may be a significant difference e.g. pk4 had less than 10% of the defence that would be found on UK servers.
A thread containing recent numbers seen on UK servers can be found here
Capturing an Artefact
Make sure you have the correct level Treasure Chamber for the type of Artefact you are capturing. The defence in the Artefact village must be cleared, and the Treasure Chamber must be catapulted. A hero must be sent in the same wave or a 2nd wave from the village you have built the Treasure Chamber. The Hero must be sent on ATTACK to capture the artefact. Raids will be ineffective and not grant you the Artefact.
Once captured, all artefacts take 24 hours to take effect (12 hours for ukx/speed) - this includes transferring artefacts between villages or accounts later in the game.
It is also possible to chief the village holding artefacts from the Natars.
At any one time each player is only allowed to use a maximum of three artefacts, of which only one can be of the large/account or unique type. Players may however hold more artefacts than these, it is simply that the oldest artefacts of the available type will be the ones that are used. Furthermore any village artefacts will overwrite the bonus of account or unique artefacts of the same type for the village they are in effect for. Finally, to take a fourth, fifth, etc. artefact - these must be through chiefing/conquering the village that holds them - your hero will not be able to capture the artefact if you already hold three or more.
If an artefact is not captured from the Natars within a month, then the artefact will become active for the Natars. Depending on the artefact this can make it more difficult to take.
For the avoidance of doubt, only one artefact can be stored per Treasure Chamber. You CANNOT hold two level ten artefacts in a level 20 Treasure Chamber.
WW Building Plans are also treated as Artefacts. It is not possible to hold a building plan AND an artefact in the same Treasure Chambers. The activation period also applies when transferring building plans.