Since its 2013 release, the playerbase for Grinding Gear Games' free-to-play action RPG Path of Exile has grown from hundreds of thousands to millions of active players by having a plan for sustainable long-term development.
In this GDC 2019 talk, Grinding Gears' Chris Wilson explains how Path of Exile is designed to retain and grow its community for the very long term.
He revealed a slew of different ways the team designs the game for sustainable growth, including how to structure releases into seasons with predictable release dates and scope, how to re-use content for rapid development, how to use procedural generation to keep content from feeling stale, how to design deep gameplay systems that keep players engaged, and (most importantly) how to grow a community over a long period of time.
It was a practical, engaging talk with tons of useful takeaways for anyone working on a live game, and now you can watch it (completely free!) over on the official GDC YouTube channel.
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