Microsoft rushed Minecraft XBLA deal ahead of E3 according to Phil Spencer

Friday, 29th June 2012 09:20 GMT By Matt Williams

Microsoft had only reached an agreement with Minecraft creator Mojang one week ahead of the company’s big E3 2011 announcement according to head of Microsoft Studios Phil Spencer.

The deal was so rushed that the graphic made for the announcement was only produced the night before Microsoft’s E3 conference. In fact, according to Spencer, the announcement came as such as a shock that many at Microsoft weren’t even sure what Minecraft was.

“Even the people inside Microsoft, as they were looking at it, were thinking, ‘What is that Minecraft thing and why are we putting it on stage?,” Spencer confessed to Destructoid.

Despite the haste of the announcement, Microsoft has been completely overwhelmed by the title’s performance on Xbox Live Arcade.

“And then the thing comes out and sells 2 million copies in a month. Did I know that? No. Even Mojang didn’t know that.”



  1. sh4dow

    They may not have known THAT but Minecraft still has been quite big for quite a while at that point:

    By April 2011, Persson estimated that Minecraft had made €23 million (US$33 million) in revenue, with 800,000 sales of the alpha version of the game, and over 1 million sales of the beta version. Gamasutra

    So I think you have to be quite stupid to say “What is that Minecraft thing and why are we putting it on stage?”.
    But I guess it just demonstrates typical corporate mentality once again. “What?! Just €23 million revenue?! Peanuts! They can talk to us again once they’ve reached €200 million!”

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Gekidami

    Just imagine, that time could have been devoted to watching more kids flail their arms around rather than Minecraft.

    #2 3 years ago

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