In the Rising Tide expansion, I can acquire Artifacts by performing Expeditions, pillaging Alien Nests, and finding them in resource pods. If I research three artifacts at once, they provide a bonus effect in addition to the normal production/science/culture yield. This bonus effect is either a civilization-wide effect, or a new building.

However, when I swap different types of artifacts to research, the bonus I unlock doesn't seem to change. How is it affected by the types or quality of the artifacts I research?


Each artifact has a preferred reward. Presumably the preferred reward will be awarded if multiple artifacts have the same preference, and that preference has not yet been awarded. The rewards are listed below, followed by those artifacts which prefer it. When three artifacts of the same type are consumed, they yield a specific type of reward:

  • Old Earth Artifacts unlock buildings
  • Progenitor Artifacts unlock Artifact Wonders
  • Alien Artifacts unlock unit abilities

Player perks, which are passive civilization-wide effects, are unlocked by combining different types of artifacts, and are not listed here.

Old Earth

Frontier Stadium

  • Hull Repair Suit
  • Jowler Ball Field Set
  • Lineage Two Interactive Family Tree
  • Thoughtful Chess Set

Pan-Spectral Observatory

  • Volumetric Component Printer
  • Plasma Turbine Engine
  • Silver-Pont Navigational Gyroscope
  • Impossible Drive

Xenomass Bath House

  • Collapsing Family Library
  • Speech Compression Computer
  • Population Estimation Computer
  • Telemed Remote Operating Theatre

Old Voice Archives

  • Personal Meditation Helmet
  • Toymark Media Cube
  • Messiah Stradivarius
  • Isotopic Decay Three

Warp Spire

  • Suspended Animation Chamber
  • Near-Lightspeed Accelerator
  • Polypeptor Organic Antifreeze
  • High-Mass Friction Welder

Drone Command

  • Señor Caffeine
  • Drone Hive Mind
  • Clean Air Generator
  • Butuiller Family Drone


Machine-Assisted Free Will

  • Void Spectre
  • M-Theory Capsule
  • Sporadic Listener
  • Confounding Object

Dimension-Folding Complex

  • Jelly Space
  • Planes of Dimensional Influence
  • Dimension Oven
  • The Folder

Quantum Politics

  • Superposition Containment Device
  • Superposition
  • Decoherence Chamber
  • Fundamental Object

Temporal Calculus

  • Auratic Magnet
  • Models of Entropy
  • Causal Looking Glass
  • Deviation Fork

Tesselation Foundry

  • Geon Spores
  • Single-Pass Geometry
  • Tesselation Vault
  • Atomic Tesselator

Relativistic Data Bank

  • Temporal Injector
  • String Weaver
  • Fixed Position Locator
  • Bright Matter


Zygotic Engineering

  • Ross Weed
  • Noose Vertebrae
  • Giant Pheromone Sack

Projected Chasis Construction

  • Cocoon Flies
  • Crystal Shrimp Pupa
  • Floating Canopy Worms
  • Electric Brain Moss

Counter-Battery Fire

  • Seismic Sounding Fork
  • Zero-Point Soil
  • Pressurized Magma Sample
  • Mobius Horn

Sky Chitin

  • Lattus Ore
  • Cloud Coral
  • Macroelectrons
  • Breeze Weed
  • Carbon Hail

Vapor Shield

  • Jelly-Stalk Ring
  • Soap Seed
  • Acidic Crystals
  • Flexible Keratin Tusk

Tidal Navigation

  • Crystal Shrimp Adult
  • Carnivorous Hive Eels
  • Heterophobic Solution
  • Tungsten Bubbles

The Rising Tide Artifact System entry on the wiki has a detailed writeup of this new, complex system.

A summary of conclusions from there:

Artifact slot positioning matters.

All artifacts have a hidden preferred reward.

Mixing artifacts allows one to tap into special rewards.

With enough Explorers scouring the map, it is possible to receive every reward in a single game sitting.

I believe the "quality" modifier only effects the bonus energy/culture/research, not the final award. The wiki also claims that artifact positioning in slot DOES affect the produced bonus effect, i.e. ABC may yield a different outcome than BCA. I have not noticed this in my own handful for anecdotal games.

I like this new system, but seems to be quite a challenge to "catch them all"

  • This answer is mostly correct, and the link to the wiki entry is helpful. However, I am pretty sure that artifact slot positioning does not matter. – Aurelius Oct 21 '15 at 0:42

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