There's a good chance that you (or your kids) like Minecraft, but chances are you don't like it as much as Microsoft, which just plunked down an estimated $2.5 billion for it. As of this morning (Sept. 15), Microsoft has officially acquired Mojang, and what that means for the wildly popular building sim is not yet clear.
Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft's Xbox division, confirmed the news today via the official Xbox website. Rumors had already been flying for a week or two that Microsoft had its eye on Mojang, a Swedish indie company whose meteoric rise to fame came on the backs of a million digital building blocks.
Spencer himself did not reference the $2.5 billion figure, but the official Mojang page confirms it. For comparison, Facebook paid $1 billion for photo app Instagram, and Disney paid $4 billion to acquire Lucasfilm and the entirety of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones canons.
Spencer did not reveal much about Microsoft's future plans for Minecraft, save that it will continue to be available on iOS, Android and PlayStation platforms in addition to Xbox and PC. The company will also continue to support Minecon: a convention where Minecraft enthusiasts meet for both business and pleasure.
Longtime Minecraft fans may, however, be disappointed to learn that the sale comes at a cost well beyond that of $2.5 billion. Markus "Notch" Persson, the charismatic creator of the game, will leave Mojang, along with the two other founders of the company. Other Mojang properties currently in development, like the upcoming role-playing game Scrolls, are now at Microsoft's discretion as well.
For now, you can continue playing Minecraft as you always have, on any platform you choose. Don't be surprised, though, if choice content starts coming to Microsoft platforms first in the future.