Microsoft Buys Minecraft Creators Mojang for $2.5 Billion | Fanboys Anonymous

Microsoft Buys Minecraft Creators Mojang for $2.5 Billion

Posted by Unknown Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Microsoft announced Monday that they have reached an agreement with Mojang, the company behind the cult video game built around virtual blocks with vast customizable worlds. Following a hefty deal, Minecraft will be incorporated into Microsoft Studios.

Minecraft creator Notch steps down from Mojang after Microsoft acquires the developer

The software giant's $2.5 billion deal with the Swedish indie video game studio comes with the obvious caveat: don't mess this up! But the announcement left many Minecraft fans worried about the future of the game and taking to the Minecraft forums to voice their concerns.

"Minecraft will continue to evolve, just like it has since the start of development," Mojang said following the announcement. "We don't know specific plans for Minecraft's future yet, but we do know that everyone involved wants the community to grow and become even more amazing than it's ever been. Stopping players making cool stuff is not in anyone's interests."

Although vague about the potential shift in its 40 employees, Mojang stated that, "Though it's too early to confirm which of us will continue working on Minecraft or other projects [such as Scrolls], we predict that the vast majority (if not all) Mojangstas will continue to work at Mojang for the time being."

One thing's for sure, Mojang's three founders—Markus "Notch" Persson, Carl Manneh, and Jakob Porser—will be leaving the company. Notch, the creator of Minecraft, previously stepped down from development on the game with plans to continue working on small game prototypes and web experiments.

"I don't see myself as a real game developer," Notch said on his website explaining that it wan't about the money. "I make games because it's fun, and because I love games and I love to program, but I don't make games with the intention of them becoming huge hits, and I don't try to change the world. Minecraft certainly became a huge hit, and people are telling me it's changed games."

Microsoft, which released franchises such as Halo and Fable, pledged that the deal will allow them to bring "richer and faster worlds, more powerful development tools, and more opportunities to connect across the Minecraft community."

Buying Mojang isn't a major financial bet for Microsoft, which has about $85 billion in cash reserves, so the deal makes sense even if they don't substantially profit off it. Released in 2009 with more than 100 million downloads on PC, both companies have worked together since 2012 while Minecraft quickly became the top online game on Xbox Live, boasting over two billion hours played on the Xbox 360 in the past two years. Microsoft's acquisition lets them appeal to a younger audience and tap into the most active community that continues to make the game as widely popular across all of its platforms—which includes the second most popular app purchase on iTunes. The deal will also bring the game to Windows phones, boosting its mobile efforts to bridge the gap between the amount of compelling apps that are available on iPhone and Android phones.

"I love you all. All of you," Notch said in closing of his post. "Thank you for turning Minecraft into what it has become, but there are too many of you, and I can't be responsible for something this big. In once sense, it belongs to Microsoft now. In a much bigger sense, it's belonged to all of you for a long time, and that will never change."

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