Microsoft has bought Swedish software house Mojang and its popular computer and smartphone game Minecraft.
The company’s three founders will leave with 1.5 billion euros to play with. Minecraft’s creator Markus Persson has been critical of Microsoft in the past. The company’s other employees will be absorbed into Microsoft’s games division. But will it be a good fit?
“That’s where the major challenge comes for Microsoft, is maintaining the spirit at Mojang and the spirit of Minecraft as a franchise. That sort of acquisition can get lost within a huge organisation like Microsoft,” says IHS Technology’s Head of Games Research Piers Harding-Rolls.
Mojang sold over 54 million copies of Minecraft, and despite its age was last month still the third most popular console game. Some analysts have speculated the deal is designed to attract more users to Microsoft’s Windows Phone devices.