Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Microsoft buys Mojang for 2.5 Billion, Founder "Notch" Persson to Depart

Following reports that the two companies were in talks, yesterday on September 15, Mojang, the makers of the highly popular "Minecraft" game announced that they were indeed being bought up by the Microsoft corporation. The selling price was listed at 2.5 Billion dollars.

In a statement on their website, the spokesman tried to reassure Minecraft fans "Everything is going to be OK." As for why the company was being sold, "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." They felt only a few companies were big enough to continue to allow the game to grow "on the scale it deserves." As they had worked with Microsoft since 2012, they were "impressed by the continued dedication to our game and it's development. We're confident that Minecraft would continue in an awesome way." Although the three people who founded the company were leaving, most of the team was planning to stay.

On his personal website, "Notch" Persson, the man who made Minecraft, gave his own statement. "I make games because it's fun," he wrote, "... but I don't make games with the intention of them becoming huge hits, and I don't try to change the world. Minecraft has certainly became a huge hit, and people are telling me it's changed games." Persson had actually stepped down from developing Minecraft "a relatively long time ago," but stuck around on smaller projects as people were telling him he was "important to the culture."

But he described an incident "a couple of weeks ago when the Internet exploded with hate against me" over a user license agreement issue that he had nothing to do with. Later on, he "started to realize I didn't have the connection to my fans that I thought I had. I've become a symbol. I don't want to be a symbol, responsible for something huge that I don't understand ... I'm not an enterpenuer. I'm not a CEO. I'm a nerdy computer programer who likes to have opinions on Twitter."

Persson stated he would be leaving Mojang as soon as the deal was completed, going back to doing small experiments, "I love you. All of you. 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 one sense, it belongs to Microsoft now. In a larger sense, it's belonged to all of you for a long time, and that will never change. It's not about the money. It's about my sanity."

Mojang's statement can be read in full (here), and Persson's can be read (here).

Bixyl Shuftan

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