The Alien Artifact is a collectible icon that makes its debut in Vigilante 8: Arcade. They are glowing, yellow-green icons in the shape of an alien's head, making them easy to spot once uncovered. The purpose of the Alien Artifacts is to challenge the player to destroy everything they can in each stage (besides the DLC stages) to find twenty Alien Artifacts so that they can unlock a secret character. Alien Artifacts can be found within any destructible object in each of the non-DLC stages, making it more strenuous for the player by making them explore all parts of the stage. Alien Artifacts can be found in every Game Mode within the game, and saves the amount of Artifacts found in the stage during the time the player spends in the stage.
The easiest way for the player to find each Alien Artifact in a stage is to access the Free Wheelin' Mode made available for the game, so that the player can roam around a stage without any distractions to look for Artifacts.