Life. Death. Digital Card Games. Some things in life are inevitable, and Valve is no exception. Once known as one of the premier single player developers in the industry, Valve has shifted their focus to two main avenues in recent years. You have the hardware division pushing for the future with the Vive and Steam Controllers, and you have the eSports teams maintaining the multiplayer juggernauts of Counter-Strike and Dota 2. Their main money maker (outside of the boatloads of cash that Steam itself generates as a marketplace) are item transactions, with the endless buying and selling of hats and mini-skirts contributing countless pennies to the company's coffers.
It is often said that the reason Half Life 3 and another Left 4 Dead will never be made is that they couldn't support this type of economy, but Valve still does employ a host of talented game designers. Today, during The International 7, Valve revealed what those developers have been working on. This is Artifact, the Dota Card Game.
Not much is known about the game so far, but Twitch host Sean “Day9” Plott revealed that concepts such as creeps and laning would be making it over from the MOBA into Artifact.
The game will hit Steam sometime in 2018.
Quick ThoughtsCard games are literally a dime a dozen nowadays, so this announcement doesn't surprise me as much as it disappoints me. Sure, the writers that helped make Valve what it once was are all long gone, but a Dota themed card game is the most bog standard by the numbers announcement I could think of. Give me an hour of prep time and I can probably distribute all the standard mechanics to Dota characters and give you a rough draft of what will launch next year.
Of course, the prospect of individual cards or booster packs being sold on the Steam Marketplace is such a tantalizing prospect that I'm really surprised that they didn't do this sooner.
Quite a nasty piece of work you managed over there. I am impressed.