The rumours have been circling like slightly blocky vultures, but Microsoft has now confirmed that it has bought Minecraft makers Mojang.
Mojang has been acquired $2.5 billion (around £1.5bn), and it will join Microsoft Studios' stable of world class development teams.
On his official twitter account CEO Satya Nadella said of the purchase: "Thrilled to welcome the Minecraft community to the MSFT family & excited about the open-world possibilities ahead!"
Microsoft has been quick to point out how the acquisition will help the powerful Minecraft community, mindful of a potential backlash from a huge audience.
Friends with benefits?
"Microsoft's investments in cloud and mobile technologies will enable "Minecraft" players to benefit from richer and faster worlds, more powerful development tools, and more opportunities to connect across the "Minecraft" community," said the company high up in its official statement.
For those who play Minecraft on Sony's PlayStation or Apple products fear not: "Microsoft plans to continue to make "Minecraft" available across all the platforms on which it is available today: PC, iOS, Android, Xbox and PlayStation," insisted the company.
Of course, a lot of people will be wondering what Mojang has to say about all of this. Over on its website, the company wrote: "Change is scary, and this is a big change for all of us. It's going to be good though. Everything is going to be OK."
So why sell? Mojang gave us a bit of a clearer idea, confirming that the game's founders, including Notch, will be leaving the company to pursue other things. "As you might already know, Notch is the creator of Minecraft and the majority shareholder at Mojang. He's decided that he doesn't want the responsibility of owning a company of such global significance."
Over the past few years he's made attempts to work on smaller projects, but the pressure of owning Minecraft became too much for him to handle. The only option was to sell Mojang. He'll continue to do cool stuff though. Don't worry about that."
Finally, the team promises players that the game won't see any sudden drastic changes. "Minecraft will continue to evolve, just like it has since the start of development. We don't know specific plans for Minecraft's future yet, but we do know that everyone involved wants the community to grow and become even more amazing than it's ever been. Stopping players making cool stuff is not in anyone's interests."
The Notch perspective
Notch has also chipped in with a few of this thoughts on the matter. "I'm aware this goes against a lot of what I've said in public. I have no good response to that," he said, later adding: "As soon as this deal is finalized, I will leave Mojang and go back to doing Ludum Dares and small web experiments. If I ever accidentally make something that seems to gain traction, I'll probably abandon it immediately."
Speaking on the Microsoft/Mojang deal, Notch concluded: "It's not about the money. It's about my sanity."
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