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Microsoft officially absorbs Mojang and Minecraft

When rumours that Minecraft and Mojang were going to be sold to Microsoft turned out to be true, it was pretty surreal and not least because Notch had been very vocal about companies selling out after criticising Oculus VR for doing that very thing. Still it happened and just a few hours ago Microsoft finalised all of the paperwork, signing over billions of dollars to Notch and taking official control of one of gaming's most influential titles in years.

This was confirmed by Xbox Head Phil Spencer, who said in a tweet:

spencer

However, while this marks a big day for Microsoft, as it has a whole new community of gamers to cater to, a game to continue development on and a hole in its bank account to the tune of $2.5 billion that it needs to fill, it was an even bigger day for Markus “Notch” Persson, the man behind the game's phenomenal success. He tweeted out about his last day, saying that he left the office without a proper goodbye as everything “felt strange,” and he wasn't really sure what to do.

“I don't even know what a fitting bye is,” he said. “So I just left like it's a normal day, with normal things happening.”

Notch had explained in a lengthy blog post before however, that he had felt distant from the process of developing at Mojang for some time. Apart from his abandoned 0x10c space sim, he hadn't officially worked on anything other than demos and programming challenges since Minecraft and found himself somewhat departed from the rest of Mojang's staff, despite being the company's founder and head.

Well no longer.

KitGuru Says: As hypocritical as Notch was for taking a payout after slamming Oculus for it, you have to give the man credit for not only popularising the Infiniminer concept, but also pioneering a pre-order model that has allowed many indies to make their dream games. 

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4 comments

  1. “but also pioneering a pre-order model that has allowed many indies to make their dream games. ” Which soon evolved into what we know today as Early Access, the biggest bane in development known to gamers. Still at least some people get the business model right, like Warframe

  2. The Minecraft model is the only thing that is right with the modern gaming industry: 1. make a unique game and sell it at a reasonable price ($7 for mobile, $20 for console, $27 for PC), 2. offer cross-platform purchases and play whenever possible, 2. offer cheap, next-gen upgrades ($5), 3. consistently improve the game with free and regular updates (they’ve been doing this for 5 years now!), 4. offer cheap and completely optional DLC in the form of texture packs and skin packs ($1-3) that do not alter the core game. It’s wonderful.

  3. The Minecraft model is the only thing that is right with the modern gaming industry: 1. make a unique game and sell it at a reasonable price ($7 for mobile, $20 for console, $27 for PC), 2. offer cross-platform purchases and play whenever possible, 2. offer cheap, next-gen upgrades ($5), 3. consistently improve the game with free and regular updates (they’ve been doing this for 5 years now!), 4. offer cheap and completely optional DLC in the form of texture packs and skin packs ($1-3) that do not alter the core game. It’s wonderful.

  4. Gary 'Gazza' Keen

    Oh I’m not arguing that the business model is bad at all, it’s really rather great. but the fine line between it being one of the most successful business models and one of the worst business models are this:

    Good: Offer up a game that may be buggy and may be slightly incomplete but for the most part is a functional game that can be passed off aspretty much done then keep adding to the game as much as you want as time goes by, calling the next iteration closer to a “finished build”.

    Bad: Give us a half assed, incomplete, deeply alpha-stage game with mechanics that don’t work, objectives that don’t exist and is essentially a tech demo without any tech, expect us to pay for it then add vital parts of the game later on whenever you feel like it, completely bypassing all quality control laws put in place to prevent another games crash like ’83 ( i know the market being flooded by crappy games wasn’t the main and sole reason for the crash but it still played a big part)