There is much to celebrate in the offices of Grinding Gear Games as another successful year ended. For Path of Exile, 2015 was a monumental year that saw it grow even more and change for the better. Before we look forward to 2016, let's look back at what Path of Exile has accomplished last year, which is a pretty impressive list to say the least.
First off, Path of Exile extended its reach throughout the world, launching in Thailand, Russia (along with CIS nations), and Brazil. Along with that global expansion, The Awakening was released, which is the biggest Path of Exile expansion released thus far. The next expansion Ascendancy was also announced, which could be even bigger, so that's certainly one to look forward to in 2016.
Path of Exile had its highest number of hours played in a year on 2015, meaning that more people played the game than ever before. Countless one-month events were run alongside challenge leagues, including experimental Darkshrine events that clue into future developments for the game. With more players coming in and loyal Path of Exile fans checking in at least now and then to see what new stuff may come up, things are looking alright for the game.
Another record was reached with the number of Supporter Pack purchases in 2015, thus proving that a free-to-play online game of this size can indeed remain operational due to the support of the players and fans. Along with that, over a million stash tabs, PoE items and over 50 Pukeko Pets were sold as well. Microtransaction Path of Exile items are there to help the game continue to exist and grow, and it's doing wonders.
Grinding Gear Games itself reached a milestone as its staff expanded to 60 people and moved to a larger office. The new place has room for 110 developers, which is a number that the company hopes to reach sometime soon. They also released the final two issues of their Digital Comic series and a physical Trade Paperback version. Things like this may not mean that much for most people, but the effort certainly shows how much attention the developers are paying to the in-game world and lore, which are crucial to its continued growth.
In that year, around 70 updates and patches to the game have been deployed to the realms operated by Grinding Gear Games, and almost just as much have been deployed in Garena realms. That goes to show how Grinding Gear Games is still committed to improving their game, even when it's already full of content and features. Also, supporters designed 120 Divination Cards for the game, showing that the growth of Path of Exile is not just in the hands of the developers, but also the players.
But most important of all the developments in 2015 is the near-complete elimination of desyncs—something that had been plaguing Path of Exile since the beta. While there are still problems that need to be fixed, primarily how performance issues in the client can impact gameplay, especially in party play, but it seems that desyncs as we've known it are a thing of the past.
So here's to the fabulous year that was 2015 and we hope for more of the same or even better in 2016. As long as Grinding Gear Games continues to fix problems and add more content, the game should do well this year.