Legion Beta: Artifact Weapons
Artifacts are spec-specific weapons in Legion that grow in power as you play through the expansion. You can customize its appearance as well as what character abilities it improves! This guide provides an overview of Artifacts in Legion and Wowhead's tools.
We have updated this post since the time of publication since many details have changed and there were dozens of images on one page when you can easily browse and interact with all the models on the Artifact Calculator.
Only Azeroth’s most seasoned veterans possess the fortitude to wield artifacts of legend against the Burning Legion. Your myth-forged weapon grows in power as you do, and your choices will change its abilities and the way it looks, sounds, and feels in combat. Fashion your artifact into the perfect instrument of battle, and guide your faction in its most desperate hour.
Each spec gets a unique weapon--36 weapons total. These are intended to be ultimate weapons for you, the hero.
Each artifact is acquired by completing a spec-specific quest that emphasizes your class' unique abilities and reveals more about important lore figures.
Your Artifact Weapon is your main weapon in Legion, there are no other weapons that will match it's power.
Traits increase the strength of various class abilities while relics enhance specific traits and increase the item level of your weapon.
Artifacts increase in power through Artifact Power unlocking traits and Relics which can be socketed into the weapon.
Artifact Knowledge is a system which helps players progress faster on their off-spec weapons. You can acquire all artifacts for your class via the Order Hall Campaign.
Artifacts have different styles and color tints which are unlocked through various activities. You will be able to transmog your artifact to another appearance, but cannot transmog other weapons to look like your artifact.
lets you select traits and relics so you can plan what to acquire first. We also have an Appearances tab that lets you preview all styles as well as how to acquire them.
Maw of the Damned
Blades of the Fallen Prince
T'uure, Beacon of the Naaru
Twinblades of the Deceiver
Xal'atath, Blade of the Black Empire
The Aldrachi Warblades
Scythe of Elune
Fangs of Ashamane
Fangs of the Devourer
Claws of Ursoc
The Fist of Ra-Den
G'Hanir, the Mother Tree
Sharas'dal, Scepter of the Tides
Thas'dorah, Legacy of the Windrunners
Ulthalesh, the Deadwind Harvester
Talonclaw, Spear of the Wild Gods
Skull of the Man'ari
Aluneth, Greatstaff of the Magna
Scepter of Sargeras
Felo'melorn + Relics
Stromkar, the Warbreaker
Ebonchill, Greatstaff of Alodi
Warswords of the Valarjar
Fu Zan, the Wanderer's Companion
Scale of the Earth-Warder
Sheilun, Staff of the Mists
Fists of the Heavens
The Silver Hand
Artifact Trait Database
for a full list of traits.
Traits are, for the most part, passive abilities which enhance your spec's abilities. When you acquire your artifact weapon however, the first ability is an active one that is quite powerful like
To select new traits in game, simply Shift-Right Click on the artifact weapon.
Most traits have three basic ranks. Spending more Artifact Power to unlock a new rank for a trait increases the strength of that trait.
Several traits have a gold dragon border on the calculator UI. These traits boost your class abilities in powerful ways, usually with distinctive visuals as well.
The amount of trait ranks you have purchased increases the amount of Stamina all classes have, and for healers, DPS as well.
for a full list of relics.
Relics can be socketed into your Artifact Weapon to increase the item level as well as boost the rank of one trait.
The maximum rank a trait can be increased to is 6/6.
There are different types of relics and each artifact has a unique combination of relics that is thematic. For example, the Shadow Priest Artifact has two Shadow Relics and one Blood Relic, while the Frost Mage Artifact has two Frost Relics and one Arcane Relic.
Each relic boosts a specific trait. Not all specs benefit from a particular relic. You can see this on Wowhead by going to the "Improves" tab on Relic pages or selecting "Choose a Spec."
You cannot swap relics in and out. They are destroyed when they are replaced. You will be able to vendor or disenchant unused relics.
There are uncommon, rare, and epic quality relics. So far these are found from
, dungeon bosses,
, and raid bosses.
If a quest offers a uncommon or rare relic, it has the chance of rerolling to a higher quality such as uncommon rolling rare.
Acquiring your Artifact
Each class acquires their artifact through an introductory questline. This questline sends you to interact with major lore figures and requires you to use your offensive and utility abilities to get through the encounter. For example, traps are a big part of the Survival Hunter questline while Assassination Rogues have to navigate Stormwind City while stealthed.
At the end of each quest, you access your Class Order Hall and learn how to interact with your Artifact X and Order Hall Mission table. You can progress further on your class-specific Order Hall quests and missions, which is the subject of another guide!
While you are completing Order Hall Missions, you can pick up items that unlock the questlines for your class' other artifact weapons. Example:
Here is a list of the initial quests for each artifact weapon. We also have videos of
many of the weapon questlines
on our YouTube channel.
Traits are unlocked through spending Artifact Power.
Artifact Power is acquired through many activities in Legion, such as major quests, dungeon bosses, treasures, and completing random Heroics.
Here is a list of items that grant Artifact Power
Artifact Power items are applied to weapons. Just click on the Artifact Power item and then on the weapon you wish to apply it to.
The costs for each trait rank increase as you progress further along on your Artifact.
Artifact Knowledge will serve as a way to accelerate Artifact Power gains over time.
Level 110 players are sent to retrieve tomes from around the world so a Researcher in your Order Hall can decipher them.
The research will require Order Resources and when it is complete, you will gain more Artifact Knowledge.
Here is a list
of books related to increasing your Artifact Power rate.
These Artifact Power boosts apply to most sources of power like items. However a few sources of large Artifact Power like level-up quests boosts will not be affected so you don't try to game the system.
Artifact Knowledge increases your rate of Artifact Power gains. This applies to all weapons on your character. This will help players that are trying to upgrade artifacts for different specs.
This also has a lore component; the research your scribe completes will yield a book with more information about your artifact.
You will acquire Artifact Knowledge faster as the expansion progresses. Your researchers will work faster as time goes on, so alts or players who have taken a break can progress quickly on their artifact.
Each artifact has six distinctive styles, and each style comes in four tints.
There are different ways to unlock each tint. Some of them include:
Hitting Prestige Levels 2, 5, 9, 13.
: Complete a Challenge Mode Dungeon using a Level 15 Keystone.
: Complete the Legion quest achievements.
: Defeat 8 World Bosses.
: Defeat Gul'dan.
: Complete 8 rare archaeology finds.
: Unlock all your Artifact Traits.
: Research the full history of your artifact in the Class Hall.
: Complete the Balance of Power questline.
: Upgrade the Artifact Forge
: Something secret!
You can transmog over your artifact, but you cannot apply artifact appearances to other weapons.
We show all of the artifact styles on the "Appearances" tab of the
. You can also build a transmog around Artifacts in the
Legion Dressing Room
and browse the
user-created Outfits database
Art Interview on Appearances
We asked Art Director Chris Robinson several questions about artifact weapons.
Click here for full interview
Can you tell us about Artifact design? Style, variations, colors?
Similar to Order Halls, we wanted to hit the tone for the class and spec. A few were easy because they were established, but the new ones were more difficult since they weren't established. We had to come up with something that felt lore-comparable and helped answer the questions: what is the core class fantasy? What weapon feels like what you want your character to feel like? I play a rogue, so I used a lot of personal experience to get the feeling of what a rogue would want to pick up in their hand to use. Then with spec differentiation in the weapons we went on with further honing into that class fantasy.
What was it like to create a weapon from scratch when there's some well-known artifacts like Doomhammer and Ashbringer?
We start with a base artifact level, i.e. Ashbringer - this is what the player expectation is for an epic level artifact weapon. Using that as a reference, all weapons should feel comparable next to each other. The problem with that is there is no established lore for the new ones, which makes them harder to identify with. So the new weapons had to look above and beyond to feel equal to Ashbringer. The base visual levels for the new weapons were a bit more complicated than the established weapons to make them feel equally epic.
Another difficulty was Shaman. Doomhammer was difficult because it didn't feel right seeing two Doomhammers (as dual wield). A solution was to make one a magical magma hunter to avoid breaking fantasy and make it seem like we're just giving Doomhammers away.
We know classes are going to feel unique with artifacts - how well have you accomplished this and making each spec feel unique visually?
We are trying to make this a balance and it will always develop along with characters - artifacts being there early on took us into a more streamlined weapon design process. There are usually 550-750+ weapons, this time 240....so we had more time to make them more epic.
As we worked on armor sets, we used visual decisions from artifacts to layer them on top of armor sets. There are not spec-specific armor sets but we looked at all the artifacts from one class to utilize visual elements on armor. Provides a more cohesive vision.
Each Class Order Hall and related quests covers a different part of the Legion story. You may be surprised at the lore origins of some artifact weapons! Here is a rough breakdown of which weapons are associated with what type of lore, as well as guides we have that explain WoW's history in more detail.
Crafted or Owned by Notable Figure:
Hidden Artifact Abilities
Artifacts in Legion have various hidden effects. When asked about them on the Legion Theorycrafting Thread, Blizzard stayed mysterious on the topic, so it's up to the players to discover them!
1. Are these effects meant to be hidden, or is there simply a missing spell ID, artifact trait, etc?
2. If not, what actually enables them? Are they baseline, tied to the equipped artifact, different per spec, and so on?
1) The former. When dealing with things as powerful as some of the artifacts players will be acquiring in Legion, sometimes mysterious things happen. Contrary to the spirit of the thread, I know. But there you have it.
2) See question 1.
Here are some of the effects that may be hidden special artifact traits:
, Balance Druid: Ancient and powerful magic has affected this creature. Only a powerful Druid wielding the Scythe of Elune can dispel the effect.
, Feral Druid: The Fangs of Ashamane have fed on the blood of beasts, providing a 3% movement speed increase. The rush will end upon entering combat.
, Hunter: When you are below 40% health, a massive eagle comes to your aid for 10 sec. This can only occur once every 3 min.
, Arcane Mage: Aluneth has recently absorbed power from a nearby source of magical energy. Arcane damage increased by 2% within the Broken Isles.
, Windwalker Monk: The gust of wind from your landing hits nearby enemies and knocks them back.
, Holy Paladin: The Light empowers you, increasing your damage to Undead by 100%.
, Discipline Priest: Light's Wrath is getting hot. Your next Light's Wrath will do massive damage.
, Fury Warrior: Odyn has granted you a second chance to defeat that which has bested you in combat. Do this within 8 sec and Odyn will grant you your life and restore 50% of your health.
, Paladin: When you die, you return as a Spirit of Vengeance for 15 sec.
, Retribution Paladin: The Ashbringer has a chance to instantly destroy any lesser demon or undead creatures.
If you want to try to find more, you can browse our
Legion spell database
and use various filters to narrow the results down. Extended search is your friend, as it will return search results for spells that use your search term in the description, not just the name of the tooltip. For example, you can do an extended search on
. We found some ones that are likely to be related to artifacts, but that we can't confirm:
Special thanks to Archimtiros for helping find a few of these.
Below are some pictures of
for Windwalker Monks:
There are also some cosmetic effects:
Arcane Mages have whispers like
Aluneth Dalaran Whispers Four-Hour Timer
full list here
. For example,
Aluneth OOM Whispers (Voice)
says "Is that everything you have"?
Protection Paladins can reveal demons in Dalaran via
. More screenshots
Elemental Shaman are friendly with air elementals in Stormheim.
Several classes have special AFK animations like Frost Death Knights, Restoration Druids, and Restoration Shaman.
NPCs react to certain artifacts. For example, a
in Dalaran talks about the curse of the Outlaw Rogue weapons, while an elven blacksmith wants to see Felo'melorn and has a
Artifact Overview Guides
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