By now, you’ve probably heard the rumor. Microsoft may be trying to buy Mojang, the studio behind Minecraft. The Wall Street Journal broke the news late yesterday, naming an anonymous source near the negotiations. The most jaw-dropping bit of the news was the rumored price tag. $2 billion! It sounded crazy. Markus Persson, outspoken creator of Minecraft, was going to sell his company to Microsoft? The guy that flamed Oculus when Facebook bought them for $2 billion? The man that responded to shilling in 2012 with this sarcastic tweet?
Anyway, my price is two billion dollars. Give me two billion dollars, and I’ll endorse your crap.
A couple of hours later, Bloomberg reported the same story, but they had three sources and some intriguing details. According to their people, Persson reached out to Microsoft with the proposal! Mind-blowing, if true. Earlier today, The New York Times backed the rumors adding to the mill. The news reports agree that an official announcement could come as early as next week, if the deal gets finalized.
What would Microsoft hope to get out of the deal besides Minecraft? Probably nothing. They wouldn’t be interested in Scrolls, or any of Mojang’s other licenses. But Microsoft sure would be jazzed about an exclusive for Minecraft 2. Minecraft is available on everything from Android to the PlayStation 4, but a sequel could be locked down to in-house Microsoft systems, and that could really move some consoles. As for Persson, well it’s $2 billion. You can be as snarky as you want to be about selling out, but when you actually have that much money in your face, the math changes.
We’ve reached out to Mojang and Microsoft for more information, but both companies have declined to comment.