Tencent acquires majority stake in Path of Exile studio

By way of its War for the Atlas expansion, Pokemon-styled patches and time travelling Incursion update, action role-player Path of Exile has made some confident strides of late. Developer Grinding Gear Games has now announced multinational Chinese conglomerate Tencent has acquired a majority stake in the company. 

Announced in this forum update (via WCCFTech), Grinding Gear says it'll maintain its independent status and that there "won't be any big changes to how [they] operate". Likewise, the deal won't affect the development and operations of Path of Exile itself.

What it will impact, though, is the growth of the New Zealand outfit. Speaking to the NZ Herald, managing director Chris Wilson says: "We're looking to increase our headcount over the next year from 114 full time employees to around 130. We're planning to do more expansions for our games, in parallel, and of course bolstering the team will be really useful in achieving that.

"Tencent is the largest games publisher in the world, has a strong reputation and is known for respecting the creative independence of the companies they invest in."

The NZ Herald also reports that Tencent's majority stake now totals 80 percent of Grinding Gear's shares. This aforementioned forum update, on the other hand, assures players Path of Exile will not adopt a pay to win business model, but does suggest Tencent's input could see specific features rolled out exclusively in China. 

As for what lies ahead, Grinding Gear promises "multiple" expansions between this year and next—and that development of 4.0.0 is now underway. This update is "currently targeted to enter Beta testing in early 2020."

Our Steven reckons Path of Exile is the king of ARPGs, but only if you can learn to love its complexity