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Alien artifact is one of the Relic units in Alpha Centauri.

Background[ | ]

Small alien artifacts were fairly common - there were several hundred "finds" in the course of colonial history. These appeared in bewildering variety: pieces of broken machinery, objects of representational or abstract art, inscriptions, even misshapen lumps of matter with no obvious purpose. Most highly prized were the "library nodes" that were often found in the vicinity of other artifacts.

Library nodes were conical devices, perhaps a foot from base to tip and roughly 40 lbs. in mass. These appear to have been the most common data storage devices in use at the time of the Progenitors' previous visits to Planet. Once the colonists learned to read the nodes, they found that each contained many terabytes of data regarding Progenitor activities, most of it bewildering and impossible to interpret. However, in some cases there were legible diagrams and schematics for specific items of Progenitor technology. Such artifacts often led to breakthroughs in human technological research, or were used to help develop complex projects and technological prototypes.

Description[ | ]

Artifacts (or Library Nodule Artifact, as they are known to the Progenitors) are mysterious and unexplained Progenitor devices sometimes discovered on Planet. If you can find an artifact and return it to one of your bases, you will have several options:

  1. you can link it to a Network Node if you have one, and receive a free technology breakthrough;
  2. you can use it to speed the production of a Secret Project or Unit Prototype;
  3. you can save it to use later.

Artifacts can be captured from other players. A lone artifact can be captured by any player without diplomatic penalty.