There’s a rumour going around that Markus ‘Notch’ Persson is setting up to sell Minecraft to Microsoft for $2 billion. What’s new to that rumour is that apparently it wasn’t Microsoft who approached Notch but the other way round. It looks like he wants to get the property off his hands.
The report comes from Bloomberg whose source tells them that the deal started coming together a couple of months ago after Notch contacted someone at Microsoft. The source says that the price and fundamentals of the deal were come to quickly but the past two months have been established the finer details of the sale.
Another of their sources says that Microsoft is eager to buy the rights to the game because they think they can bring in more players and franchise the game effectively through toys, movie rights, and other such marketing things.
There are still a lot of details of this plan which are unclear, and the sale itself hasn’t been confirmed by either party. One question is whether this deal is to sell simply the Minecraft IP and licensing rights to Microsoft, leaving Mojang an independent company, or whether Microsoft will acquire the whole studio and its games. Another question is where it will leave Notch: will he stay with the company or leave it behind.
He has, after all, said in the past on leaving Minecraft behind him, that “You have no idea how tempting it is right now. First thing I’d do would be to post something explaining why I’m doing what I’m doing to the people who care. Then I’d disable my twitter and email, and go sit on a beach somewhere with a laptop, firmly locked into my own little world, just poking at code. Just like in the good old days. Except on a beach.”
And, back in June, he tweeted:
Anyone want to buy my share of Mojang so I can move on with my life? Getting hate for trying to do the right thing is not my gig.
— Markus Persson (@notch) June 17, 2014
Details of this sale or not-sale will likely come to light in the coming weeks.