Artifacts are a class of items in Fate. Artifacts are predefined, powerful, and rare items that can be acquired by fishing or in the dungeon. By adding Zircon gems to your items, you can increase your chance of finding artifacts. They can be identified by a dark yellow highlight on the item's name. Most artifacts have stat requirements that must be met before the item may be used, and always start out as unidentified. Like most other items, they can be socketed, however, this runs the risk of removing all powers from the item, turning it into an average version of the item.
Most artifacts appear as weapons and armor. However, there are a few artifact Gems, which can be used like any other standard gem. These gems look like their generic counterparts, but have significantly different powers. (For example, the "Dwarf's Delight" looks like a Turquoise, but doesn't give electric bonuses. Instead, it gives you 25% more gold dropped by enemies and +6 Hammer skill.) The artifact gems are mostly found by fishing in Fate pools, and can be recognized by the same yellow highlight as weapon/armor artifacts.