Tencent Buys Majority Share In Path Of Exile Creator Grinding Gear Games

Jason Winter
By Jason Winter, News Editor May 21, 2018
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On last week's F2P Cast, we joked that Tencent owns a piece of practically everything. That now includes Grinding Gear Games, which now owns approximately 80% of the Path of Exile developer, according to the New Zealand herald.

GGG CEO Chris Wilson took to Reddit to offer up some Q&A's on the deal, which included the usual "nothing will change" and "we're still in control" platitudes, which -- in my experience -- are a coin flip as to whether they're true or not. At the least, Wilson said the schedule of four content updates per year will still continue, with tentative plans for 4.0.0 to enter beta in 2020.

What is certain is that Tencent's been publishing PoE in China since last year's launch, and, with its financial backing, GGG should have the ability to expand and reach an even further audience. That includes increasing staff, according to the NZ Herald, which also quoted Wilson as saying that the company was focusing on Path of Exile but would "love to" make other games.

It's always scary when an outside company acquires your favorite game company. As I said at the time of the Sony Online Entertainment acquisition -- by whomever it was -- it usually doesn't change as much as you'd think. Sure, Daybreak Game Company has fallen on hard times, but Sony Online Entertainment was bleeding money as the time of its acquisition, so, at least in terms of its games (putting aside the question of Russians meddling in the 2016 election), probably not much would have played out different. Look at Tencent's own acquisition of Riot Games; League of Legends is still doing OK, no? And then there's NCSoft/ArenaNet, Activision/Blizzard, and Leyou/Digital Extremes (remember that?), none have which have seemed like predatory relationships.

Granted, yes, there is the other side of things, like Perfect World Entertainment -- which, like the SOE/Daybreak/Columbus Nova stuff, is probably more about buying up weak products that are in trouble to being with -- and just about anything Electronic Arts picks up. But it's pure panic to think that GGG being bought out by Tencent is automatically bad, just because it's a big scary foreign company.

Now, if you don't want to support Tencent/GGG because it's a part of this whole thing, that's another matter entirely...

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About the Author

Jason Winter
Jason Winter, News Editor
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.

Discussion (8)

TreadHead 4 years ago
Why should anyone buy supporters packs anymore? GGG is no longer a truly independent developer and its wrong for them to sell these anymore.

It would be like EA trying to fund their next AAA game on Kickstarter.

Ivaylo Vasilev 4 years ago
The last good game going to die ... R.I.P.

SHIMO 4 years ago
Tencent owns a lot of shares in a ton of companies, I know they are the owner of league of legends and love it or hate it they haven't done anything P2W, they also have a large share in epic games and fortnite is the same way. Can you buy cosmetics? Yes. Can you buy anything that gives you an in game advantage? No. I think PoE will be fine, if anything now they have more money to spend on future expansions/other things.

a 4 years ago
the day path of exile died. theres no going back from this. its over. greedy chinese c#nts

FreeThought86 4 years ago
How about these companies creating monopolies now in the gaming space?

It’s trickling over into this industry considering the potential as games have become so popular over the years. I’m just not okay with the growing possibility that a handful of companies will publish and own all the gaming companies in the future.

Lagwin1980 4 years ago
The biggest gripe is that supporters (some of the largest ones) now feel that they would no be supporting an indie dev to realise their dream and instead the money is going to a giant faceless mega company.

And if it dose effect GGG's income how will that be dealt with by tencent? because at some stage if it gets bad enough they will feel forced to try save their investment and interfere in the games monetization.
Either that or it gets canned for everywhere but china.

Q 4 years ago
As long as they stay out of any development decisions, Idc. We'll see soon enough if they're up to no good with things like the cash shop cause it will be very obvious.

Memme 4 years ago
I'm not really feeling this... kinda worried about PoE


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