Report: Microsoft to Buy Minecraft Dev Mojang for $2.5 Billion - Update 3

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Riff Moonraker:

Rainbow_Dashtruction:

Riff Moonraker:

Thing is... they are turning the Xbox division around ALREADY. Besides, it doesnt suck. Quite the opposite, in fact. I see this as yet another move to bolster the forward progress they are already making after their Xbox One initial debacle.

This is news to me. From what I heard, it was doing even worse then it ever has before, and seeing as they had never ever made a profit before, I don't see that being true.

My take from it all... going by what I read, Sony has most definitely posted profit with their Playstation division, but it doesnt appear to be something I would go running around ballyhooing. Nearly every other aspect of Sony looks to be doing its best impression of The Titanic, and that is really bad. Sony does not have the monetary clout that Microsoft has, and has been cutting every corner they can to gain and hold a lead over Microsoft, and while it is currently working, they are shaving things so thin that their profits, while indeed profits, are scant. With the rest of Sony's world not looking so well, if Microsoft does a few things right, such as another price cut on the Xbox One, certain games causing a swing in the tide of sales, etc. then Sony is going to be in serious trouble. Even if they were to drop alot of the other divisions as dead weight, and make themselves leaner, meaner, game division focused little machines, their financial clout would be reduced to such a point that they couldnt compete with Microsoft blow to blow, and that could be bad as well.

This is exactly why i do not have a PS4, i wouldn't open a bank account with a bank thats going up shit creek. Their gaming division is doing well but it's the only part of Sony that is. No matter how strong that one leg is, a one legged dog still falls over.

Oh, Christ, no...

Microsoft would not look favourably on the Minecraft modding community, and I wouldn't put it past them to either quashing it outright or making the modding feature even more unstable.

"We do the imagining for you! You better mod in a good lawyer!"

SilverUchiha:

WeepingAngels:
I hope this isn't true. I am holding out hope that the Wii U will get Minecraft.

Agreed.

OT: I really hope it isn't true. I have nothing against Microsoft (mostly), but Mojang has NOTHING to gain in terms of what they can do by going along with this deal.

He has 2 billion USD to gain. On the spot.
And that's in addition to what he has made already.

To this in perspective:
50 million copies at 27 bucks each (current price from his website) would amount to 1.35 billion gross.
(ignores taxes and the like)

In short: Notch would have to be a complete idiot to NOT take this deal right now.

Knowing this, I speculate that Microsoft's plan is to acquire the IP and rush a sequel, probably retailing at full price (at least 40-60 USD). There's no realistic way for them to profit from Minecraft as-is at a 2 billion investment.

Also, I suspect (along with everyone else) that Minecraft would become Xbone-primary (not exclusive; they'd have to be stupid to ignore the PC market entirely), and probably lock mods so they can realistically push microtransactions and paid-DLC, since that would be the quickest way of recouping both the initial purchase investment AND development cost of a sequel.

SUMMARY: Basically, if this deal is legit and goes through, Minecraft is as good as it's ever going to get right now.

Just FYI Microsoft, I too will endorse anything for $2 billion. Hint hint.

So they plan on making Minecraft "2" an exclusive? This deal allow them to pull Minecraft "1" from other platforms? Interesting if so, but I balk at the worth of having even a fully exclusive Minecraft (allowing Minecraft on PC would be silly for Microsoft if they are fighting this hard to survive).

All very interesting but simply wrong. Imagine the first party bonanza they could have with that sort of money, me thinks that would be money better spent.

llamastorm.games:

This is exactly why i do not have a PS4, i wouldn't open a bank account with a bank thats going up shit creek. Their gaming division is doing well but it's the only part of Sony that is. No matter how strong that one leg is, a one legged dog still falls over.

The thing about that is with the Playstation division doing well it means even if Sony goes under someone will pick it up. Companies buy failing companies all the time, and they'd be fools to pass up one that is successful.
Microsoft's division however is seen as a money pit, and with Xbox's Ted Turner if you will out of the picture I'd be more unsure on them continuing. Microsoft has a lot of money yes, but unless you have a personal stake in the matter nobody will continue in a market where they are bleeding money.

You know I read that as "Microsoft near deal to buy MAHJONG," as if they could somehow copyright the ages old tile game. I dunno, there have been worse ideas to attempt to break into the Japanese game market; though I feel this would alienate the country, more than sell units...

Muspelheim:
Oh, Christ, no...

Microsoft would not look favourably on the Minecraft modding community, and I wouldn't put it past them to either quashing it outright or making the modding feature even more unstable.

"We do the imagining for you! You better mod in a good lawyer!"

I sincerely hope this doesnt happen. I think that the modding community for Minecraft is definitely a part of their success. This could be a good thing... however, IF this deal goes through and Microsoft puts a stop to the modding then yeah, it is going to chalk up as a fail.

I seriously SERIOUSLY hope that Microsoft doesn't change anything in how Minecraft is developed after they buy Mojang

I can image what kind of bullshit they can pull.

The Xbox version could become the version that gets updated first in the future.

Hell, they could stop updating the pc version all together

They could re-do the launcher and the way Minecraft works to integrate it into some kind of newer games-for-windows weirdness or something

...I guess we can only wait and see

Hi readers,

ICYMI, I updated this story earlier today. Added some news from Bloomberg, who 1) confirmed the deal/negotiations through their own (three) sources, and 2) talked about how the reported deal came to be.

-Devin Connors
Tech Editor, Minecraft Newbie

Soviet Heavy:

FUCK. Well, I hope that we all enjoyed the time that Minecraft has spent on Playstation and PC, because you can kiss a sequel goodbye unless you're on an Xbox.

Who gives a rat's ass about "a sequel"? This is not some narrative epic that's conclusion some of us getting cut out of.

If you care about other games with Minecraft's premise but slightly different features, there areplenty of those. Just tell yourself that Oort Online or whichever one youlike is actually called "Minecraft 2".

llamastorm.games:
[quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377489"][quote="Rainbow_Dashtruction" post="7.860225.21377427"][quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377404"][quote="rofltehcat" post="7.860225.21377301"]

This is exactly why i do not have a PS4, i wouldn't open a bank account with a bank thats going up shit creek. Their gaming division is doing well but it's the only part of Sony that is. No matter how strong that one leg is, a one legged dog still falls over.

Sony makes most of it's money from it's banking and Insurance division with it's Camera, Fab, Film and Music all doing better than the game division.

Just because the PS4 is making headlines does not mean the game division is big it's still one of Sony's smaller parts.

Based on that twitter post it sounds like MS asked how much to buy them out, Notch sarcastically threw out an unrealistically huge sum, but MS responded by pulling out their checkbook. Of course I could be wrong.

rasputin0009:
This sounds like lies. Notch constantly says he likes being his own boss and also likes to make video games. Selling out to Microsoft would be the opposite of what the guy likes. I can smell the bullshit through my computer screen.

For shits and giggles, let's assume the report is true and try to jot down some believable reasons as to why this is happening:

-Internal conflicts at Mojang could cause them to want to sell and disband, but that would be silly.

-Notch and the rest of Mojang are young (mid-30's?), so retiring would also be incredibly silly.

-Extremely ridiculous plans for Minecraft that require more funds than the absurd amounts of cash that Mojang already has.

-Notch is held hostage in the basement of Bill Gates' house, and this deal will be the only thing that can save him. This is probably the most realistic reason out of the bunch.

Everyone has a price. I'd expect Notch to take the deal purely for the payday, give the IP to Microsoft, then leave and start a completely different company and be his own boss again, but this time filthy rich.

The fact that Notch hasn't come out to say this isn't true, means it is true.

This makes no sense to me.
Minecraft is a valuable property, but not 2 billion property.

I will be very, very surprised if this turns out to be true.

Notch's silence on the subject is unsettling.

In the past he's always rushed to debunk false minecraft rumors, but now is silent? I'm starting to believe this deal might happen..

How to win at the game of "Video game industry".
Step 1: Be successful
Step 2: Sell out.
Step 3: Congratulations, you have won "Video game industry".

All this talk about Microsoft desperate for exclusivity just drives home the importance of freeing developers and studios from specific consoles and unifying the development kit across all technologies.

i hate to be doom and gloom but....buggerit.

DOOOOOOOOOM!

there, got that off my chest.
if they DO go there...you can kiss your mods goodbye.
why?
because...moneys....
why allow people to do great stuff for free? when you can make a bunch of your paid interns do it for you, slap a new 'dlc' tital on it and charge people $40 a pop for it?
why allow modders and private server pack owners the ability to run their own server when you can kill every free non micro$haft one and force everyone to use your 'legit' servers.
and watch the ability to play the game in 1 player then open it to LAN vanish like a sweet sweet memory....

just remember guys. ask NOW for the people that make FTB, Technic and ATLauncher ect to work out a patch they can release after the official anouncement, so you wont have to connect to the 'legit microsoft-mojang' servers to play your old, out of date version of the game.

becasue sure as a dalek is an atisocial killer, your going to find you ether have to *upgrade* to the new, extra costing, pay us at microsoft this time, mojang to access the old mojang servers to play your modded game, or your just going to be forced to dump the whole thing if you cant access the launchers in offline mode.

*sighs*

guess its time to start making regular backups of your launcher folders ect on externals people. least that way you can try playing them on offline PCs with no net connections (so they cant phone home to micro$haft and report your 'eligal copy' running...even tho you paid for it when it was 1.2.5 (the old 1.2.5 not the newer ones btw)

Considering this is twitter, and by his wording, I'm assuming he's just being sardonic.

Then again, I'd sell my own family for 2 billion dollars. With that money, I could literally buy a city. He could use that money to just make Mojang 2 and continue developing new IPs.

Muspelheim:
Oh, Christ, no...

Microsoft would not look favourably on the Minecraft modding community, and I wouldn't put it past them to either quashing it outright or making the modding feature even more unstable.

"We do the imagining for you! You better mod in a good lawyer!"

Maybe Microsoft wants to buy Mojang because of their knowledge on how to do open-source systems correctly? Open source has led to huge success stories lately (the past 5 years), and maybe, just maybe, Microsoft wants a slice of it. Typical Microsoft intervention of the modding community (and the Youtubers) would definitely crush the Minecraft brand to a fraction of what it is now so I can't see them bringing down the hammer. They might go about it by slowly suffocating the modding community over a few years, though.

I know the saying "throwing money at a problem" but that's like spending all your gil on Yojimbo for a mid-boss (for those who get the reference)

youji itami:

llamastorm.games:
[quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377489"][quote="Rainbow_Dashtruction" post="7.860225.21377427"][quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377404"][quote="rofltehcat" post="7.860225.21377301"]

This is exactly why i do not have a PS4, i wouldn't open a bank account with a bank thats going up shit creek. Their gaming division is doing well but it's the only part of Sony that is. No matter how strong that one leg is, a one legged dog still falls over.

Sony makes most of it's money from it's banking and Insurance division with it's Camera, Fab, Film and Music all doing better than the game division.

Just because the PS4 is making headlines does not mean the game division is big it's still one of Sony's smaller parts.

Not sure where you are seeing that, but I just did a basic search on both companies, and every single article that popped up about Sonys profits looked absolutely DISMAL. They continued mentioning the Playstation division as a strong point, but that overall, they are getting financially walloped. Hey, dont misunderstand me. I might be an Xbox fan, but I am not brainless enough to want the Playstation to go out of business, or something like that. I'm not implying that. Competition is the ENTIRE reason the Microsoft has changed the entire Xbox One direction around, and I am quite happy about that. No Competition is bad... really bad. Plus, you wouldnt have interesting stories like this one popping up and stirring up the gamerbase. :)

gamegod25:
Based on that twitter post it sounds like MS asked how much to buy them out, Notch sarcastically threw out an unrealistically huge sum, but MS responded by pulling out their checkbook. Of course I could be wrong.

I am seeing stuff pop up all over the place saying the Notch and Mojang actually approached Microsoft on this. Obviously its all hearsay, irregardless, until we hear something official.

Traviltar:
How to win at the game of "Video game industry".
Step 1: Be successful
Step 2: Sell out.
Step 3: Congratulations, you have won "Video game industry".

Look man... tell me if you were in his shoes YOU wouldnt do it? Two BILLION dollars? Sorry, I would take that leap in a heartbeat, as would any other sane human being. I cannot sit here and call the man a sell out, if he does it. I could call him a fool, if he didnt take the money, however.

Silverbane7:
i hate to be doom and gloom but....buggerit.

DOOOOOOOOOM!

there, got that off my chest.
if they DO go there...you can kiss your mods goodbye.
why?
because...moneys....
why allow people to do great stuff for free? when you can make a bunch of your paid interns do it for you, slap a new 'dlc' tital on it and charge people $40 a pop for it?
why allow modders and private server pack owners the ability to run their own server when you can kill every free non micro$haft one and force everyone to use your 'legit' servers.
and watch the ability to play the game in 1 player then open it to LAN vanish like a sweet sweet memory....

just remember guys. ask NOW for the people that make FTB, Technic and ATLauncher ect to work out a patch they can release after the official anouncement, so you wont have to connect to the 'legit microsoft-mojang' servers to play your old, out of date version of the game.

becasue sure as a dalek is an atisocial killer, your going to find you ether have to *upgrade* to the new, extra costing, pay us at microsoft this time, mojang to access the old mojang servers to play your modded game, or your just going to be forced to dump the whole thing if you cant access the launchers in offline mode.

*sighs*

guess its time to start making regular backups of your launcher folders ect on externals people. least that way you can try playing them on offline PCs with no net connections (so they cant phone home to micro$haft and report your 'eligal copy' running...even tho you paid for it when it was 1.2.5 (the old 1.2.5 not the newer ones btw)

This is the same fear that I have. Granted I'm happy for the folks at Mojang getting rich, good for them. But we're all screwed.

Notch was tired of his old, boring vacations and is looking to spice them up with his new funds. Now he can finally have his much deserved permanent vacation

Everyone has their price. No one's personal ethics are immune to enough money.

Riff Moonraker:

youji itami:

llamastorm.games:
[quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377489"][quote="Rainbow_Dashtruction" post="7.860225.21377427"][quote="Riff Moonraker" post="7.860225.21377404"][quote="rofltehcat" post="7.860225.21377301"]

This is exactly why i do not have a PS4, i wouldn't open a bank account with a bank thats going up shit creek. Their gaming division is doing well but it's the only part of Sony that is. No matter how strong that one leg is, a one legged dog still falls over.

Sony makes most of it's money from it's banking and Insurance division with it's Camera, Fab, Film and Music all doing better than the game division.

Just because the PS4 is making headlines does not mean the game division is big it's still one of Sony's smaller parts.

Not sure where you are seeing that, but I just did a basic search on both companies, and every single article that popped up about Sonys profits looked absolutely DISMAL. They continued mentioning the Playstation division as a strong point, but that overall, they are getting financially walloped. Hey, dont misunderstand me. I might be an Xbox fan, but I am not brainless enough to want the Playstation to go out of business, or something like that. I'm not implying that. Competition is the ENTIRE reason the Microsoft has changed the entire Xbox One direction around, and I am quite happy about that. No Competition is bad... really bad. Plus, you wouldnt have interesting stories like this one popping up and stirring up the gamerbase. :)

http://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/IR/financial/fr/14q1_sony.pdf

3 months ending 30th June 2014

Now remember these are how much each division made or lost compared to how much the division sold before tax and loan repayments that's not taken off until it's all added together.

Mobile Communications - $-27 million income

Game & Network Services (PS4 here) - $43 million income

Imaging Products & Solutions - $172 million income

Home Entertainment & Sound - $76 million income

Devices (there semiconductor fabs) - $124 million income

Pictures - $78 million income

Music - $113 million income

Financial Services $433 million income

Riff Moonraker:

Traviltar:
How to win at the game of "Video game industry".
Step 1: Be successful
Step 2: Sell out.
Step 3: Congratulations, you have won "Video game industry".

Look man... tell me if you were in his shoes YOU wouldnt do it? Two BILLION dollars? Sorry, I would take that leap in a heartbeat, as would any other sane human being. I cannot sit here and call the man a sell out, if he does it. I could call him a fool, if he didnt take the money, however.

Can I call him selfish? Because that's what it really comes down to.

You can say you'd do it too, but you also haven't sold 50 million+ copies of a game at $10-20 a piece (IE $500,000-1,000,000+). The man is set for life, and odds are good everyone at Mojang is as well depending on how it's been divvied up.

He can do what he likes, but that doesn't mean I have to be nice about it since he gets to run off with several human lifetimes worth of money while the players get to deal with the consequences.

Nononononononononononono three hundred billion times NO

Now I can understand why this deal looks good I mean that is a hell of a lot of money but come on Notch you f***ing know if Microsoft gets their grubby paws on Minecraft they will screw the fans over by doing something like stopping mods,or making it X-bone only

personally if he should sell to anyone it should be valve at least they know how to be friendly to mods

(also at least it isn't scumbag EA or Zynga looking to buy it :/)

What will happen if this goes through:

- Development on the PC version ceases; Mojang store shuts down cutting off new customers from buying it
- Internal Mojang servers also shut down, eliminating ability to connect to online servers
- Game is re-released as a Windows 8 native app, no more Mac and Linux versions and no more mod support
- Free updates probably do continue, because Microsoft does understand that players appreciate that, but everyone has to buy the new version from their app store to get them
- iOS and Android versions continue to be sold, because hey, free money, but development ceases
- New Windows Phone version released in their stead
- PS4 version also continues to be sold, because hey, free money, but development ceases
- Xbox 360 version no longer in development either because they gotta move those Xbox Ones
- All YouTube videos about Minecraft monetized by Microsoft, because this is the real reason they thought it would be worth $2 billion in the first place - without that, nothing else, even long-term, could possibly have been worth that investment
- Every single Minecraft Let's Player abandons the game for good; the smart ones remove all their old videos so Microsoft can't get any of said money

Methinks I doth taste the whiff of some sour grapes of jealousy from some commentators here, but I think most people are taking the more pragmatic view. Minecraft has probably been one of the best value entertainment products in terms of $/hour for most people who have bought it. It has made the transition to educational tool, team-building product and shutter-upper of small children for an afternoon so parents can get some peace.

Most of us in the industry could knock out a clone of it in a couple of weeks, but in reality we're just slapping our foreheads wondering why we didn't think of it first. If it, and the Mojang IP (and credibility?!) are worth two billion to MS then Mojang would be fools not to take it.

I've always thought the indie scene, which some of you know I am involved with (and push people to get involved in at every opportunity!), is a bit of a quantum paradox. It is simultaneously both the easiest and the hardest way to make money at the same time but it is very possible to make an extremely comfortable living from it.

It has never been easier to author your own ideas with several high quality engines now available, some of which can be utilised with zero coding experience. It has also never been harder to stand out in the crowd and make your voice heard above the noise. Unless you make the news.. somehow.. let's not go there :)

Set aside the 2 billion for now - do you think you could sell 1000 copies of your game at $20 each? Or 500 copies at $10? If so, you have a hobby. Could you sell 10,000? Now you have a career. 20,000? Now we're into lifestyle territory.

Hits like Minecraft are extremely rare and it is unsurprising that the leviathans want a slice of that sweet, sweet, credibility pie and are prepared to pay top dollar for it. Equally, you don't have to have Notch's success to be a success yourself. He mastered the Blair Witch Project formula of very low costs with high interest and return. It's much harder to make a profit if you've sunk $100 million+ into a project... something to bear in mind!

Anyone who tells me they would turn down a multi-billion dollar deal from MS after achieving the above is likely to be fibbing...

Steve the Pocket:
What will happen if this goes through:

Cynical, but possibly not far off the mark. The YT angle is one I hadn't thought of myself because we don't do that - it's counter productive - and for that reason I don't think MS would either. My personal opinion, for what it's worth, is that Minecraft 2 is where they see the money at. History will decide who was right!

I'm sure at least one (likely more) person has already pointed this out in the 100+ comments before me but just in case they haven't:

Anyone else find it just a bit hypocritical for Notch to throw a fit over Oculus selling out to Facebook on for him to turn around and sell out to Microsoft? :P

Then again, if that tweet is to be believed, he did specifically put a price-tag of $2 Billion on his game, looks like someone's willing to buy now.

"Pursue other projects and interests"?
Like sipping cocktails by his moon pool in his moon mansion on the moon, watching Earth get slowly taken over by windows 9.1 microsoft robots?

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