Artifact land is a term used in reference to the six common land cards printed in Mirrodin and Darksteel that also have the artifact type.
The artifact lands heavily contributed to the dominance of the affinity-based deck archetypes, and thus, in March 2005, all six were banned from Standard (Darksteel Citadel however, was later reprinted in Magic 2015, and the ban did not carry over with the reprint.) In the Modern format, all but Darksteel Citadel were banned from the beginning.
From the glossary of the Comprehensive Rules (January 24, 2020—Theros Beyond Death)
- Artifact Land
- A combination of artifact and land that’s subject to the rules for both. Artifact lands can only be played as lands, not cast as spells. See rule 301, “Artifacts,” and rule 305, “Lands.”
- The location depicted in each artifact land was also featured in the art of the appropriate Sun's Zenith card from Scars of Mirrodin.
- The artwork of each colored artifact land was picked up to by a respective basic land from New Phyrexia, representing darker versions of the original.