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Artifacts are items in Borderlands and Borderlands 3 that provide passive effects when equipped.

Borderlands

Eridian artifacts are powerful item found in Pandora which grant their wielder certain bonuses to their Action Skill. The mission reward artifacts are created from the different types of crystals that are mined on Pandora.

Although the artifacts gained from missions are always appropriate to your character, enemies that drop artifacts might drop one for any of the four classes.

Application

  • An artifact is applied by being selected in a character's inventory. Upon activation, the artifact will be removed from the inventory and is added to the character's Action Skill as a permanent upgrade.
  • As higher level artifacts are added they will override their lower level predecessors and only higher level artifacts of any given type can be applied.
  • All artifacts are class specific and the level of effect that the artifact grants depends on the level of the artifact itself. The highest elemental effect is level 6 for an artifact with a level requirement of 44.

Usage

  • The currently active artifact is displayed in the Skill Tree window at the top, to the left of the Action Skill.
  • Artifact types can be changed by selecting the artifact icon and picking a different artifact from the drop down list. The list displays the highest level artifact that has been applied of each of the four types, as well as an option for "None" to disable artifact effects.
  • Artifact bonuses will be in effect until another activated artifact is chosen (e.g. a Shock Artifact and Incendiary Artifact cannot both be active simultaneously; the most recently activated artifact will provide its effect).
  • With the exception of the Explosive Artifact, artifacts will decrease base damage done, but have a chance of giving the target massive damage over time, essentially being more effective against the right type of enemy but less effective against the wrong type.

Shapes

Each artifact has a distinctive shape depending on the character class it relates to. The shape is how the item appears in game as well as the picture on the item card.

  • Soldier - Pentahedron (Square bottom pyramid) (five sides)
  • Berserker - Hexahedron (Cube) (six sides)
  • Hunter - Octahedron (eight sides)
  • Siren - Dodecahedron (twelve sides)

Types

Artifacts come in four types and apply the appropriate elemental effect damage your character inflicts when using their Action Skill.

Each type has strengths and weakness against the various enemies in the game.

Artifact Comparison Chart

Artifact Comparison
Artifact Skill Level Character Level Requirement Artifact Sell Price Image
644405994 Level6SirenShockArtifact
Level 6 Siren Shock Artifact
544332176 Level5SirenCorrosiveArtifact
Level 5 Siren Corrosive Artifact
438121190 Level4SirenIncendiaryArtifact
Level 4 Siren Incendiary Artifact
33249741 Explosive Artifact Berserker
Level 3 Berserker Explosive Artifact
32617864 Artifact corrosive lvl3
Level 3 Berserker Corrosive Artifact
2206284 CoArtifact
Level 2 Hunter Corrosive Artifact
1142149 Artifact incendiary lvl1
Level 1 Soldier Incendiary Artifact


List of Known Artifact Rewards

Mission Rewards



Drops

  • Level 6 random element:

Artifacts of a given elemental type have a chance of dropping from enemies of the same elemental type - for example, a corrosive spiderant may drop a corrosive artifact when killed - which will be of a similar level to the enemy. Artifacts of all types have a chance of dropping from Badass/BadMutha/SuperBad Guardians in the Eridian Promontory.

  • Level 2 random element:
    • Guardian Spectre in the Dahl Headlands
  • Level 1 random element:
    • Skar in Skag Gully (1st playthrough only)

Notes

  • Playthrough experience indicates that the highest achievable artifact level from Playthrough 1 is element level 4. Higher level artifacts can only be acquired and equipped in Playthrough 2.
  • While somewhat random, there appears to be a higher probability in acquiring artifacts from high-end random encounters, e.g. Spiderant Kings and Queens.
  • Artifacts exhibit their element when dropped, e.g. corrosive artifacts are covered in acid, fire artifacts are covered in flames.

Borderlands 3

In Borderlands 3 artifacts are not character class specific, they can be used by all characters. Artifacts can not be purchased at vending machines, but will appear in all random loot such as chests and enemies.

Application

Buffs granted by artifacts can be divided into three categories:

  • Basic buffs - these buffs are artifact-specific and are designed to grant additional abilities or to improve effectiveness of activities performed by the wielder.
  • Special Effect buffs - only Legendary artifacts can spawn with Special Effect. These buffs are artifact specific. Some legendary artifacts spawn without Special Effect buff while others can have two.
  • Bonus buffs - these buffs are randomly selected and artifacts, depending on their rarity level, can have up to three bonus buffs. These buffs, in turn, determine prefix of the artifacts.
    • White - 0
    • Green - 1
    • Blue - 2
    • Epic - 3
    • Legendary - 3

Usage

In Borderlands 3 artifacts are equipped and removed just like any other item. Removing the artifact removes buffs granted by that artifact. Characters can carry number of different artifacts in their backpacks and equip one which is most suitable for situation on the battlefield.

Prefixes

Prefixes for common rarity level artifacts are determined by and are indicator of artifact's bonus buffs. Common rarity artifacts names are used as prefixes for Legendary artifacts.

PrefixBuff
Asbestos+ Incendiary resistance
Breaching+ Shotgun damage
Contaminated+ Radiation damage
Dead-eye+ Pistol damage
Durable+ Corrosive resistance
Frozen+ Cryo damage
Greasy+ SMG damage
Grenadier+ Grenade damage
Grounded+ Shock resistance
Hasty+ Movement speed
Hollow Point+ Assault Rifle damage
Hulking+ Heavy damage
Insulated+ Cryo resistance
Lead-Coated+ Radiation resistance
Loaded+ Magazine size
Long Lasting+ Action Skill cooldown rate
Long Range+ Sniper damage
Lucky+ Luck
Lustrous+ Elemental resistance
Melty+ Corrosive damage
Precision+ Weapon accuracy
Quickdraw+ Weapon reload speed
Ravaging+ Area-Of-Effect damage
Spicy+ Incendiary damage
Stalwart+ Max shield
Unyielding+ FFYL Downed Time
Vigorous+ Max Health
Zappy+ Shock damage


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