Minecraft developer Mojang may soon be the property of Microsoft, if rumours out of the financial world are true.
Microsoft is looking to buy Minecraft, and for a pretty heavy sum of money, according to today’s tastiest on dit.
The Wall Street Journal [paywall] cites “a person with knowledge of the matter” for word that Microsoft and Mojang are in “serious discussions”.
The deal, rumoured to be worth about $2 billion, could be signed as early as this week.
A report on Bloomberg states Persson was the one to reach out to Microsoft regarding the deal. According to a person familiar with Microsoft, the first contact regarding a possible sale took place a few months ago. Persson reportedly was pleased with the “positive working relationship” between the two companies on bringing Minecraft to Xbox consoles.
The report goes on to state the “framework and approximate price” have been discusses since with rumored to be helping out with the transition before moving away from his creation entirely.
Bloomberg’s other source familiar with Microsoft also stated Xbox boss Phil Spencer and Persson have a “close relationship” and that Spencer has flown to Sweden to have dinners with Persson.
The source also stated “Microsoft will keep Minecraft available for rival products,” should the deal go through but noone would expect future games to be released on PlayStation systems should all of this come to pass.
Minecraft has sold over 54 million copies across all platforms, ranking it alongside a small number of single titles like Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty that can boats of tens of millions of copies sold of a single game. This lends a bit of credence to the rumour; you can see why Microsoft would want that in its pocket.
The last time Mojang discussed acquisition rumours was in early 2013, when the founders said they had no interest in selling up despite receiving offers from “nearly every major gaming company”.
Perhaps they’ve grown tired, though; running a business is pretty hard work, and gets in the way of making games. Or perhaps they’re tired of making games; creator Markus “Notch” Persson no longer works on Minecraft and cancelled his sophomore project 0x10c, although he regularly produces tremendously fun game jam entries and prototypes.
Minecraft is available on Mac, PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, and is coming to Vita.