CK3 Dev Diary #80 - Is That a Dagger in Your Pocket…?

Is that a dagger in your pocket…?​

or

Inventory System/Commission Artifact:​

Howdy all,

Your Friendly Local Community Manager here to introduce this week's Developer Diary! While it was not my article, it was written by our ever mysterious Content Designer, CC! So sit back, relax, and enjoy some neat new features from the team and we can't wait to hear your thoughts and feedback!

Without further ado:

Greetings!

Let’s talk about artifacts and the systems surrounding it.

Artifacts can be divided into two categories, inventory and court, which is also where the items are stored. This dev diary will focus on the former one, so the inventory.

Inventory system​

Feast thine eyes on the inventory screen! Instead of putting all of the goodies into a big pile, we’ve made an inventory window showing what’s currently equipped and how many of each category you can “wear”.

1.png

[image of inventory screen]

Equipable artifacts fall into the following categories; crown, regalia, weapon, armor, and lastly, trinkets. Most of these categories speak for themselves but trinkets, so what are they you may ask? The answer is a myriad of things; they can be brooches, dried flowers, even a worm on a string.

You can also sort after these categories, making it easy to find what you’re looking for when you want to equip, repair, or just browse your inventory.

2.png

[image of inventory screen: artifact section]


In the Artifact Details, you can read the artifact’s history, as well as see what people are claimants. Watch out - some of these people may be looking to steal the artifact away from you…
3.png

[image showing artifact details: history tab]

Of course, it goes both ways! Did your stupid brother inherit the family heirloom? You can duel, declare war, or steal it — as long as you have a claim.

4.png

5.png

[image showing artifact details: claimants tab]

Artifacts wear down when on your person versus when they are on display in the court. So keep that in mind as it can be costly in the long run to equip everything for the bonuses if you're not making full use of them.

Since the Antiquarian is such a vital figure in maintaining and making full use of your artifacts, there’s a shortcut to recruiting or just looking at who has that position in your court.

6.png

[image showing the Antiquarian court position info]

As shown in the image, the Antiquarian unlocks the ability to Reforge and Repair, as well as Commissioning Artifacts.


7.png

[image showing the Reforge Artifact interaction]

Commission Artifacts​

Inspirations are fickle like creativity, so if you have the gold and you want something commissioned, you can get in touch with local artisans through the Commission Artifact decision.

An additional benefit of commissioning an artifact is that you get to decide what’s being made.

8.png

[image showing the commission artifact decision; artifact selection]

Now you might wonder, “why would I ever subject myself to the whims and possible long time for a person to become inspired if I can just go to the local artisans and get what I want?”
You see, even if inspirations appear as fickle as love during springtime, it’s that little extra spice — a creator’s passion — that permeates through the final product. It’s that warm feeling of love for the craft that the beholder can feel just by looking at it, it’s something that’s not always present in a commissioned piece.

Ah, my apologies, I appeared to have been carried away there for a brief moment by my muse.

What I meant to say is that in gameplay terms, that means that inspired people can create artifacts of higher quality while the commission artisans will do the bare minimum and therefore be of the lowest quality.


9.png

[image showing the inspiration progress]

Whether a passion project or not, creating something takes time. We ask for your understanding and hope that you continue to enjoy Crusader Kings 3!

This Dev Diary was ghostwritten by the mysterious CC.
 
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After thinking it over, and reading other people's comments, I think my three biggest worries are:

1. Will artifacts be inherited in a reasonable manner?

I think inheritance in general, despite being the centerpeice of the game, is one of the weakest parts of CK3's systems. Too often, everything from counties and kingdoms are divided in ways that, while obeying the letter of the rules, do not make much sense. Things like four kingdoms being split between two sons in a checkerboard pattern. These experiences are extremely frustrating, and make it feel like the game was not designed with common scenarios in mind. If the same is true of artifacts, it risks being equally frustrating. People have given some great examples - it can't be the case that if the Byzantine emperor loses the election, the crown goes stays with his family while the new emperor has nothing. But at the same time, it can't be the case that becoming emperor and then losing it means all of your artifacts are absorbed into the empire's treasury. Similarly, if you have the crown of Lombardy, but the kingdom of Italy goes to your second son, it can't be that the crown stays with the first son. And if having a bunch of artifacts is important to the strength of a character, it can't be that second sons are left with nothing and can't hold onto their new kingdom because all their angry vassals have a full armory and they an empty one.

2. Will artifacts change hands at a reasonable rate?

We all like the idea of raiding Rome and absconding with the holy grail, but if artifacts are constantly being stolen every time there's a war, things will feel chaotic. It's already the case that the AI loves conducting decade-long wars where each side goes off and sieges down the other's holdings. If sieges frequently result in artifacts being captured, will major artifacts be changing hands every few years? Family members in foreign courts already get killed and captured with absurd frequency, I would hate to see the same applied to artifacts. This feels like a difficult thing to tune, because a low chance of stealing artifacts will make sieges feel extremely random and swingy, but a high chance will make artifacts feel very ephemeral.

3. Will the AI duel and declare war for artifacts at a reasonable rate?

If every inheritance leads to a half-dozen people with claims on your entire treasury who want to duel you for every little brooch and bauble, things will get tiring very quickly. And if the AI spends all its time dueling other AI characters over minor artifacts, everyone will end up maimed and disfigured before they turn 30.

Similarly, going to war over an artifact feels very fraught from the perspective of AI behavior. The AI is already *very* eager to declare wars it's not really capable of conducting, and ends up in crushing debt after a decade of total war trying to capture a single county. How much worse will that behavior be when the AI is allowed to declare war over a 25 gold brooch?

The way CK3's war and peace system is designed, every war, no matter how minor, has to be a total war that results in the occupation of a large portion of the target country before peace can be secured. The only thing that speeds things up a little is ticking war score for occupying the war goal. But you can't occupy an artifact. So will wars over artifacts drag on even more than wars over territory? How do match the "you need 100% warscore" system against "we're fighting over a jewled dagger"? Won't almost all wars over individual artifacts feel completely out of proportion?

I know not every detail ends up in the dev diary. But I'm somewhat unsettled by the fact that there doesn't seem to be even a note of concern about these sorts of issues in the post.
 
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Neat. some questions:

1.) does that broach contain some fertility herbs or something? aka how does a broach improve fertility. Prestige I get, but fertility?

same way attractiveness traits do, id figure. makes you look sexy on account of how fancy it is, so your spouse or lovers want to get it on more

you kind of have to pretend not to know that fertility works by periodically rolling dice, which would necessitate all fertility modifiers be the actual physical fertility of your human body. i personally think its a fine abstraction, it works

There's already Attraction opinion for this though
This was one of the first things I noticed in the DD earlier today. Yet another example of a stat boost on an artifact that makes little sense unless you work to make it make sense. This has been my biggest gripe about artifacts - we're doing the same thing we did in CK2, where the artifacts give stats that really make no sense. I had hoped that the lessons from CK2 would have been learned and we'd have stuck to stats that make sense without trying to figure out some way to make them make sense. Originally we were told that they'd just give boosts to grandeur and the like, which was fine. Then they showed us artifacts like a cup that apparently saves you from poison (essentially chalice with +X poison resistance???).

This isn't D&D. Don't get me wrong, I love D&D. But this isn't D&D and I don't think it should try to be. Yet now we also see jewelry that increases your chance of having kids. First of all, it is absurdly easy to max out your children in this game already, so why bother with increasing fertility in the first place? Secondly, jewelry can increase attractiveness. It can't increase fertility. Yes, others have pointed out that the mechanics in the game are convoluted and mix and match attraction and fertility in weird ways, but that's a separate issue. Why compound that issue by adding a jewelry artifact that increases fertility when that doesn't make sense? Make it increase attraction and it makes perfect sense. And take it further... if one broach increases fertility because game mechanics mix up attraction and fertility so the idea is that it makes your spouse more interested in you and so your "fertility" is higher, why don't all broaches to one extent or another? Why not all jewelry? Is this one so vastly superior over others that it increases interest in you while most others have no effect at all in that regard? It really makes no sense. I mean, okay... if my wife has on the Crown Jewels, maybe that's so vastly superior in "attractiveness" compared to any other jewelry artifact, but is it really? Can no other lesser jewelry also attract me to my wife? Even if it's less, it is still something. And in that case, you're stuck with every jewelry item having a bonus to "fertility" (better to call it attraction) with a range of amount based on how nice the piece is. And that's just pointless.

I get that we want stats on items to make them feel worthwhile. Unfortunately, that is what we want. It would be nice if what everyone really wanted was RP value - artifacts that convey a story to help you create your own story without any need to have any stat boosts at all. But we are all so hooked on the loot tables of games that we aren't willing to give them up to enjoy simple RP. Even so, I wish Paradox would choose stats that made perfect sense without having to think about how it makes sense. If you have to think about how it makes sense, then that is a design flaw. It should be obvious and clear without any effort on the player. It should be like seeing armor that gives a reduction to your chance of being injured in battle, which should make perfect sense to everyone rather than armor that gives all your knights a bonus to damage, which shouldn't make any obvious sense even though you could come up with a scenario where the armor is so shiny that it makes the enemy have trouble focusing on anything but you so that your knights are able to take advantage of that to do more damage. Yes, you can make it make sense, but it isn't clear and obvious the way it should be. Unfortunately, Paradox is going with the obtuse stats instead of the obvious ones on items just like in CK2.
 
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This was one of the first things I noticed in the DD earlier today. Yet another example of a stat boost on an artifact that makes little sense unless you work to make it make sense. This has been my biggest gripe about artifacts - we're doing the same thing we did in CK2, where the artifacts give stats that really make no sense. I had hoped that the lessons from CK2 would have been learned and we'd have stuck to stats that make sense without trying to figure out some way to make them make sense. Originally we were told that they'd just give boosts to grandeur and the like, which was fine. Then they showed us artifacts like a cup that apparently saves you from poison (essentially chalice with +X poison resistance???).

This isn't D&D. Don't get me wrong, I love D&D. But this isn't D&D and I don't think it should try to be. Yet now we also see jewelry that increases your chance of having kids. First of all, it is absurdly easy to max out your children in this game already, so why bother with increasing fertility in the first place? Secondly, jewelry can increase attractiveness. It can't increase fertility. Yes, others have pointed out that the mechanics in the game are convoluted and mix and match attraction and fertility in weird ways, but that's a separate issue. Why compound that issue by adding a jewelry artifact that increases fertility when that doesn't make sense? Make it increase attraction and it makes perfect sense. And take it further... if one broach increases fertility because game mechanics mix up attraction and fertility so the idea is that it makes your spouse more interested in you and so your "fertility" is higher, why don't all broaches to one extent or another? Why not all jewelry? Is this one so vastly superior over others that it increases interest in you while most others have no effect at all in that regard? It really makes no sense. I mean, okay... if my wife has on the Crown Jewels, maybe that's so vastly superior in "attractiveness" compared to any other jewelry artifact, but is it really? Can no other lesser jewelry also attract me to my wife? Even if it's less, it is still something. And in that case, you're stuck with every jewelry item having a bonus to "fertility" (better to call it attraction) with a range of amount based on how nice the piece is. And that's just pointless.

I get that we want stats on items to make them feel worthwhile. Unfortunately, that is what we want. It would be nice if what everyone really wanted was RP value - artifacts that convey a story to help you create your own story without any need to have any stat boosts at all. But we are all so hooked on the loot tables of games that we aren't willing to give them up to enjoy simple RP. Even so, I wish Paradox would choose stats that made perfect sense without having to think about how it makes sense. If you have to think about how it makes sense, then that is a design flaw. It should be obvious and clear without any effort on the player. It should be like seeing armor that gives a reduction to your chance of being injured in battle, which should make perfect sense to everyone rather than armor that gives all your knights a bonus to damage, which shouldn't make any obvious sense even though you could come up with a scenario where the armor is so shiny that it makes the enemy have trouble focusing on anything but you so that your knights are able to take advantage of that to do more damage. Yes, you can make it make sense, but it isn't clear and obvious the way it should be. Unfortunately, Paradox is going with the obtuse stats instead of the obvious ones on items just like in CK2.
This has nothing to do with artifact, this is problem of fertility and attractive mechanic as a whole in ck series.
 
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This was one of the first things I noticed in the DD earlier today. Yet another example of a stat boost on an artifact that makes little sense unless you work to make it make sense. This has been my biggest gripe about artifacts - we're doing the same thing we did in CK2, where the artifacts give stats that really make no sense. I had hoped that the lessons from CK2 would have been learned and we'd have stuck to stats that make sense without trying to figure out some way to make them make sense. Originally we were told that they'd just give boosts to grandeur and the like, which was fine. Then they showed us artifacts like a cup that apparently saves you from poison (essentially chalice with +X poison resistance???).

This isn't D&D. Don't get me wrong, I love D&D. But this isn't D&D and I don't think it should try to be. Yet now we also see jewelry that increases your chance of having kids. First of all, it is absurdly easy to max out your children in this game already, so why bother with increasing fertility in the first place? Secondly, jewelry can increase attractiveness. It can't increase fertility. Yes, others have pointed out that the mechanics in the game are convoluted and mix and match attraction and fertility in weird ways, but that's a separate issue. Why compound that issue by adding a jewelry artifact that increases fertility when that doesn't make sense? Make it increase attraction and it makes perfect sense. And take it further... if one broach increases fertility because game mechanics mix up attraction and fertility so the idea is that it makes your spouse more interested in you and so your "fertility" is higher, why don't all broaches to one extent or another? Why not all jewelry? Is this one so vastly superior over others that it increases interest in you while most others have no effect at all in that regard? It really makes no sense. I mean, okay... if my wife has on the Crown Jewels, maybe that's so vastly superior in "attractiveness" compared to any other jewelry artifact, but is it really? Can no other lesser jewelry also attract me to my wife? Even if it's less, it is still something. And in that case, you're stuck with every jewelry item having a bonus to "fertility" (better to call it attraction) with a range of amount based on how nice the piece is. And that's just pointless.

I get that we want stats on items to make them feel worthwhile. Unfortunately, that is what we want. It would be nice if what everyone really wanted was RP value - artifacts that convey a story to help you create your own story without any need to have any stat boosts at all. But we are all so hooked on the loot tables of games that we aren't willing to give them up to enjoy simple RP. Even so, I wish Paradox would choose stats that made perfect sense without having to think about how it makes sense. If you have to think about how it makes sense, then that is a design flaw. It should be obvious and clear without any effort on the player. It should be like seeing armor that gives a reduction to your chance of being injured in battle, which should make perfect sense to everyone rather than armor that gives all your knights a bonus to damage, which shouldn't make any obvious sense even though you could come up with a scenario where the armor is so shiny that it makes the enemy have trouble focusing on anything but you so that your knights are able to take advantage of that to do more damage. Yes, you can make it make sense, but it isn't clear and obvious the way it should be. Unfortunately, Paradox is going with the obtuse stats instead of the obvious ones on items just like in CK2.
I get your concern, but if artifacts were limited to their most obvious bonuses then there would be very little variation between them. A sword would simply give you more prowess, that's it; an armor would simply decrease chance of dying in battle, that's it - if it's ceremonial, it just gives prestige and nothing else; every type of ring would only gives you minor attraction or prestige bonuses - that's it. I feel like it would all be incredibly limiting.

Not everything in a RP-oriented game needs to be a 1-to-1 direct connection, and giving players space to imagine their own roleplay reasons for artifacts is a good thing in my opinion. When artifacts were first talked about, there was a sword or armor, can't remember which, that made your men at arms fight better; you might consider that a stretch, but if the players thinks about it, they can come up with their own reasons for why that armor increases your soldiers' ability in battle: maybe they believe it's an armor that came from the gods to aid them in battle; maybe it's the armor of the previous king, who greatly expanded the land of the realm, so they believe it brings luck to their side in war; maybe it acts as a symbol of their warlike religion and they will do anything to protect it in battle; maybe they know that their king is part of a magic cult, and believe the armor to be surrounded by protective powers - and if magic is on their side, who could stop them?

A chalice that decreases your chance of poisoning may have been crafted with materials that decrease a poison's potency a bit - and even if it's not true, what matters is that everyone believes it is so, poisoners included; or maybe you were told that if there's poison in it, the liquid would turn a different color - and even if it's a lie, you would be inclined to reject drinks that have slightly different colours than what you expect; or maybe it's a sacred relic of your religion, and poisoning it would be seen as sacrilegious, so would-be poisoners are less inclined to poison it.

A ring increases fertility (fertility\attraction opinion conundrums aside) because you (and\or everyone around you) were told it increases fertility, so you are more inclined to try and have a child to see if it works, and, look at that, sharing beds more and more actually increases the chance of having a pregnancy.

Of course it's not always as easy, and there are stretches - imagine there's a sword that increases your domain's income; coming up with a reason for why a sword should have that effect is certainly more difficult and more of a stretch than why a sword inspires your men in battle.
 
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Not everything in a RP-oriented game needs to be a 1-to-1 direct connection, and giving players space to imagine their own roleplay reasons for artifacts is a good thing in my opinion.

I have nothing against RP headcannons, however I feel these explanations should be provided by the devs as flavour text.

The fertility/attractiveness issue is mostly one of inconsistency.
 
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Are artifacts partitioned, or do they all go to the primary heir?

Does a House claim rely on a single character possessing it for a long time, or can it be spread out over multiple characters of the same House? And if we lose the artifact for a brief period time, does that reset the clock
Artifacts go to the Primary Heir on succession.

House Claims are still gained as long as they are held by the same character. I think it does not reset instantly if it is lost.

And if I steal an artifact during a siege, but lose the war, do I keep the artifact, or have to give it back as part of the peace deal like the way prisoners are released?
You keep the Artifact.
Can you demand artifacts you have a claim to from your vassals, similarly to how you can revoke titles you have a claim to?
Yes, you can demand artifacts you have a claim on, it is just not very likely they will just give it away.
 
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Artifacts go to the Primary Heir on succession.

House Claims are still gained as long as they are held by the same character. I think it does not reset instantly if it is lost.


You keep the Artifact.

Yes, you can demand artifacts you have a claim on, it is just not very likely they will just give it away.
Does this mean elective titles that pass through several dynasties, if the primary title of the recipients, will scoop up the artifacts of those houses into one pile that goes with the primary title? If you're, say, the Holy Roman Emperor, but someone from a different dynasty is elected the emperor and you go down to King of Bohemia or whatever, will you lose all your artifacts to the new Holy Roman Emperor?
 
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tsr-aph

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Artifacts go to the Primary Heir on succession.

House Claims are still gained as long as they are held by the same character. I think it does not reset instantly if it is lost.
As others have said, this really doesn't make sense in elective scenarios or normal partition either (as @Tiax pointed out with the Lombardy example)

There really, really needs to be a three-tier system in place for inheritance,
1) Artifacts with title allegiance (e.g. iron crown) get inherited with the title when you own the title or it is created by confederate partition.
2) Artifacts without allegiance get passed down with primogeniture.
3) Spares (e.g. extra swords or crowns), alongside trinkets are split by partition of people who inherit land from you, perhaps based on rank.

For example, if I'm HRE, but also king of Bohemia and Austria, my Cousin inherits HRE, two of my sons split the kingdoms and my third son inherits the dutchy of Lower Silesia, which I also own, and have the Reichskrone and three other crowns in my possession, my cousin should get the Reichskrone, and my two kingly sons should split the other crowns, the elder one getting two crowns and the younger one only the one.

There should be additional logic that said that if one of my sons inherits due to title allegiance, that counts as a crown inherited due to partition.
 
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Torredebelem

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A bit worried about game balance regarding artifacts. For a start, there are too many possible "trinkets" that can add a large amount of bonuses to a character. It is true that wearing each artifact reduces its life but there are clear ways to address that, which unless really expensive, pass a blank check on lack of game balance.
Also the direction the game is taking seems a bit too much in the RPG direction for my particular taste, even if I think it is not a very popular opinion here. The game needs more management and strategy with characters as centerpieces for those two paths, not even more developed characters as in a traditional RPG.

All in all lets wait and see with the expectation that given that I think minor DLCs will add detail to certain areas/mechanics of the map (like the vikings in the last one), the next big DLC be more about strategy and management and less about RPG elements that only affect part of the gameplay - the court system and part of these artifacts mechanics are only available to Kings & above & some forms of government.
 
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Darsara

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I read to think, old feeling shortcomings what. Don't design a slot for mounts... A generation ago there were Wolf mounts

Without mounts, how will we have Horse Armour?
 
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A bit worried about game balance regarding artifacts. For a start, there are too many possible "trinkets" that can add a large amount of bonuses to a character. It is true that wearing each artifact reduces its life but there are clear ways to address that, which unless really expensive, pass a blank check on lack of game balance.
Also the direction the game is taking seems a bit too much in the RPG direction for my particular taste, even if I think it is not a very popular opinion here. The mgae needs more management and strategy with characters as centerpieces for those two paths.

All in all lets wait and see with the expectation that given that I think minor DLCs will add detail to certain areas/mechanics of the map (like the vikings in the last one), the next big DLC be more about strategy and management and less about RPG elements that only affect part of the gameplay - the court system and part of these artifacts mechanics are only available to Kings & above & some forms of government.
I imagine the limited number of artifact slots is supposed to counteract the artifact stacking problem CK2 had.

Whether it will work is another question. Balance hasn't been one of CK3's strong suits. Even with just the base game you can easily end up with more bloated stats than you could in CK2 with all DLCs... :(
 
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Tiax

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Artifacts go to the Primary Heir on succession.

House Claims are still gained as long as they are held by the same character. I think it does not reset instantly if it is lost.


You keep the Artifact.

Yes, you can demand artifacts you have a claim on, it is just not very likely they will just give it away.
Super disappointing answers. I think this approach is going to lead to a lot of frustrating scenarios.

EDIT: A lot negative reactions here, but I think people aren't appreciating what this answer says. It says that if you have a big pile of artifacts, and you suddenly get elected emperor, all of your artifacts now belong to the empire, and will be inherited by whoever wins the next election. If that's not your player heir, you are back to having nothing.
 
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Riamus

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I get your concern, but if artifacts were limited to their most obvious bonuses then there would be very little variation between them. A sword would simply give you more prowess, that's it; an armor would simply decrease chance of dying in battle, that's it - if it's ceremonial, it just gives prestige and nothing else; every type of ring would only gives you minor attraction or prestige bonuses - that's it. I feel like it would all be incredibly limiting.
This is an issue, yes. However, that is mainly due to their idea that there should be hundreds or thousands of artifacts in existence. I'd much rather see a far more limited number available and much harder to acquire/create that offer some nice stats that make sense than to have practically every landed character owning multiple artifacts. I'd much rather see your standard weapons and armor not be artifacts as basically every landed person should have them anyhow. And that reduces the issue of variety considerably. Why do you need to use artifacts as a stat boost in the first place? Is there any reason they can't be RP-related (the first crown of the first king or emperor in a dynasty, the dagger that won a particularly important duel, the banners of your defeated enemies) rather than just miscellaneous "junk" that has stats stacked on it? This doesn't have to have Diablo or WoW style equipment. At this point, the "artifacts" are closer to standard RPG equipment than actual artifacts because it's once again becoming far too common and easily attainable. I have a strong suspicion we'll see the same thing as in CK2, where you have dozens of duplicate swords and armors and so on and that wasn't a great thing in CK2.

At the very least, put flavor text on artifacts explaining why it has some special stat that really makes no sense to have. Of course, that becomes a challenge with generated artifacts, but at least it gives some "history" to explain things without forcing the player to do mental acrobatics to come up with a reason.
 
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BrotherJonathan

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Not quite sure how I feel about this. On one hand, I think that some kind of artifact system has a place, but I also understand why some people are concerned that it could lead to a crazed hoarding of random cloaks and swords for stat boosts if not implemented properly.
 

VeronicaTS

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I'm a bit bothered in this on how limited the provenance of artifacts are. For example, if one of those daggers kills the Holy Roman Emperor who conquered France and Poland in his lifetime, but because they were empires on their own it caused the empire to fracture and it hasn't recovered in 200 years, and it is known that dagger killed him, that seems it would have some serious provenance and would at least radiate prestige. If you kill a bunch of high profile people using an axe - in duels or executions - that should radiate prestige for that. The nefarious axe of Hildegarde III who used this to kill half the high nobility of Europe in 943 - that is something.

I really feel that an artifact isn't just a fine sword, it has that provenance that makes it an artifact.
 
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