It came as a shock to hardcore gamers when mega corporation Microsoft purchased Minecraft developer Mojang, because the man behind the game always lauded independence and had balked at other corporate offers. The modest company with only a handful of staff was snapped up for a whopping $2 billion towards the end of 2014, but as expensive as the deal was, it’s already beginning to pay off.
Microsoft revealed this week that if they continue down the same trajectory they should start making a profit on that $2 billion before the end of they year!
The last set of financial reports revealed that their gaming sector revenue had increased by 79 percent thanks to acquiring Minecraft, which is now available on almost every platform imaginable.
The money began pouring in almost over night, with thousands of copies being sold from day to day. Even before Microsoft took over the sandbox building game had sold over 18 million copies on Windows and Mac in 2014, and another 10 million are expected to be sold by 2016!
Microsoft proved smart in making the original developers an offer high enough that they couldn’t refuse it. Amazon, Google and Facebook had all shown an interest, which Minecraft’s creator appeared to turn down out of principal, but at the end of the day the money did the talking and now it’s Microsoft that are reaping the benefits.
It’s still early days however, and it’s not clear what direction the corporation will be taking the property. Simply sitting on it and taking in the game sale revenue is one thing, but there are signs that they want to expand much further in to merchandise, books, and spin offs. There is even a Minecraft movie in the works, which will introduce a whole new audience to the game.
One area tied to this is the HoloLens technology, Microsoft’s answer to Google Glass. The virtual reality style glasses headset brings games and other media to life by projecting holograms right before the user’s eyes.
A Demo of Minecraft that works with the device, called “Minecraft in the living room” received a great reception and could further help boost sales.