2 Aug, 2020, updated 16 Aug, 2020 artefact solo kickstarter

So on another Kickstarter I backed the luxury version of Artefact. I didn’t know I was backing a luxury thing, I just like getting physical stuff in the post, and for the (comparatively rare) 🇬🇧 RPGs, I can order at much cheaper postage. Well, it arrived, and it’s very lovely indeed.

The idea of Artefact is, from the website:

ARTEFACT is a story game for one player, designed for contemplative solo play.

In the classic dungeon crawl, you follow the lives of adventurers as they overcome challenges to gain prestige and, most importantly, magical treasures. But what were those treasures doing before the adventurers came along? How many aeons have passed, in silent darkness, since they were last used?

It’s a journalling game. There’s no dice rolls, just some prompts for ideas, and off you go. You can be a weapon, a shield, a musical instrument, or a bunch of other things. The important thing is that you’re near-immortal, and have memories of being made, being kept, then being lost, before being found again.

It’s basically Highlander but you’re the sword and not Christopher Lambert.



Now, I’ve never played a journalling RPG before, so I’m probably reviewing the genre more than I’m reviewing Artefact. The important thing with these things is that you can write as much or as little as you want. You can type it on your computer, or inscribe it with calligraphy. You can write nothing at all and just have a muse about it.

I’ve fallen into hand-writing a few pages at a time, at night. So rather than playing through in a few hours' session, just half an hour at a time.

This is pretty much not what’s intended, and I’m not getting the build-up-of-the-passage-of-time feelings that I should.


So, the idea is:

  1. Answer some basic questions
  2. Mentally sketch your first keeper
  3. Answer some questions about them and what happened between you and why they stopped carrying you
  4. Meditate on the passage of time
  5. Repeat up to six times

It’s written out in detail at the front of the book, and summarised at the back where the actual prompts are.

I still cocked this up.

I answered all of the questions instead of some of them, and mixed up some of the prompts. Pretty sure it’s because I’m an idiot though.

I mention this in the layout section because I spent a lot of time flipping backwards and forwards between the section of prompts and the section of the game-flow.


The front is black and gold ink on green card.

I think I’ve said enough, it’s delightful. 💯

Otherwise, within there are a few minor illustrations between sections, but that’s about it. It’s only 32 pages though, there’s not space for much

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