Dungeon-delving adventurers hoping to get their hands on Path of Exile 2 (opens in new tab) this year might have to find something else to do. The ARPG sequel, which will add a new seven-act story to the existing game, was expected to hit beta late this year, but it looks like Grinding Gear Games is going to have to push it back.
"Our initial estimate was to start some early beta testing in late 2020," Grinding Gear Games’ co-founder Chris Wilson told PCGamesN (opens in new tab). "But we’re going to revise that estimate as we approach it to make sure that things are ready enough for community feedback. Rushing it out won’t benefit anyone, we believe!"
The studio revealed the first game's next free expansion, Delirium (opens in new tab), this week, and it's the main reason for the expected delay. Outsourcing partners in China have been delayed by the coronavirus outbreak, causing a knock-on effect for Grinding Gear. To make sure Delirium wasn't affected, the studio made some changes to the Path of Exile 2 schedule so it could put more people on Delirium.
It's another case of the coronavirus outbreak intersecting with gaming. Wilson explained that the Chinese artists were advised not to return to the office after Chinese New Year, citing concerns about the virus.
The bulk of the 80,000 cases of the cornavirus are in China and has so far claimed around 3,000 lives. This has lead to the cancellation of a slew of events, including the Taipei Game Show (opens in new tab), Overwatch League matches (opens in new tab) and the Chinese League of Legends pro series (opens in new tab). Outside of Asia, PUBG Corp (opens in new tab) has put off an event in Germany, while publishers and developers are pulling out of PAX East and GDC (opens in new tab).
Path of Exile 2 still doesn't have a release date, with Wilson saying the studio will "release it when it's ready."