For the Legion artifact weapons, see Artifact.

Artifact is the highest level of item quality in World of Warcraft, above Legendary. Before World of Warcraft: Legion, artifacts were only speculated about, as no such items had ever been available to players in the released game to that point.

Legion artifacts

Main article: Artifact

Artifacts are a special type of weapon introduced in World of Warcraft: Legion, and the only weapons players would wield over the course of the expansion.

Players can acquire these new weapons early in the expansion's run, and the weapons grow in power alongside them. Artifact Power can be earned by engaging in most types of play, and can be spent to unlock a unique tree of traits, enhancing abilities. Players can also obtain relics and use these to upgrade the artifact itself. Artifacts also come with an extensive range of visual customization options.

There is an artifact for each class specialization, 36 in total, plus an additional one for Fishing Icon Fishing. Obtaining each artifact involves a unique questline to seek out these powerful weapons.

With the release of patch 8.0.1, the artifact weapons can continue to be used as normal weapons, but all traits added to the weapons were "burned away" and disabled.

Pre-Legion artifacts

Removed from game The subject of this section was removed from World of Warcraft in patch 7.0.3.

Prior to Legion, artifact was the item quality above legendary. Though none of these items were obtainable, a handful did exist in the game files (primarily as GM gear). They used the color gold to denote their quality; this color was later reused when heirlooms were introduced. This caused a few interesting issues where some references to artifacts had not been removed. For instance, trying to mail an heirloom to a character on another account would return the error message, "Artifacts can only be mailed to your own characters."

  • Artifacts couldn't be obtained by players and couldn't normally be linked.
  • Prior to World of Warcraft's initial release, artifacts were planned to use the color red.[1][2]
  • According to an older version of the Item Basics page on the WoW website, the names of Artifact-quality items were planned to appear in red. A listing for Artifacts no longer appears on this page, however the red-linked version still exists in archive form under the dates Jul 15, 2005 through Jun 15, 2007.
  • The web color code for artifact itemlinks was #e6cc80.

Blizzard statements

Re: Artifact? | 2007-10-15 14:26 | Blizzard Entertainment Eyonix

Yeah, red is the item color text we designated for artifacts, but at this time there are none in the game.

View original post

Re: Legendary and Artifacts | 2006-09-30 17:56 | Blizzard Entertainment Tseric

The devs would like to improve on Legendary items through addition or revision. At this point, adding Artifact items is somewhat unnecessary, as it would only mostly serve to devalue Legendary items as a whole.

Perhaps when the level cap gets a little higher and that next step in itemization is needed.

View original post

List of artifact items


  1. ^ Eyonix 2007-10-15. Artifact?. Archived from the original on 2007-10-15. Retrieved on 2009-06-14.
  2. ^ WoW website web archive Jul 15, 2005 through Jun 15, 2007.

External links