Microsoft Acquired “Minecraft” for $2.5 Billion but Founders Will Leave
With rumours spreading around for a while and recently last week, we’re here to confirm all of it, as of today Microsoft announced to the public that the company was buying Mojang, the Swedish game developer company in charge of the very popular Minecraft game. The total buyout cost is $2.5 billion, which Microsft said that with the purchase they will “break even” by same date next year. With this acquisition, Mojang founders – Markus “Notch” Persson, Carl Manneh, and Jakob Porsér – are leaving the company to pursue other projects.
It is said from Microsoft, that this whole deal should all be done before this year 2014 is over, then bringing the Mojang gaming developers under the companies Microsoft Studios department. This means that Minecraft gets developed right side other game franchises such as Halo and Fable. Interestingly, the creators of both of those franchises – Bungie Studios and Peter Molyneux, respectively – have also left Microsoft to pursue other projects.
You may be wondering what is going to happen to non Microsoft platforms, the company has said that it “plans to continue to make Minecraft avaliable across all the platforms on which it is available today: PC, iOS, Android, Xbox and PlayStation.” This means that the game will not be exclusively just for Windows Phone or Xbox and also that Microsoft just wants all of Minecraft’s revenue to be funnelled directly into its own pockets.
Mojang also posted a little information about Notch’s reasoning for the sale and his subsequent departure from the company:
“Minecraft has grown from a simple game to a project of monumental significance. Though we’re massively proud of what Minecraft has become, it was never Notch’s intention for it to get this big.
As you might already know, Notch is the creator of Minecraft and the majority shareholder at Mojang. He’s decided that he doesn’t want the responsibility of owning a company of such global significance. Over the past few years he’s made attempts to work on smaller projects, but the pressure of owning Minecraft became too much for him to handle. The only option was to sell Mojang. He’ll continue to do cool stuff though. Don’t worry about that.”
With the 5 years the game has been out, Minecraft has had massive success. In that span of time, Mojang has not released another hit game. Well if you already scored a big hit like Minecraft, that it hard to match it with something else.
What will the future hold for Notch and the rest of the gang? And what will Microsoft do with Minecraft now that it’s there? I mean, aside from simply collecting cheques.