Despite being 11 years old, Minecraft sales have officially topped 200-million copies, with a total of 126-million people playing the game monthly. Microsoft is detailing the latest sales figures just as Mojang Studios celebrates 11 years since the first Minecraft alpha build was originally released.
Microsoft has also seen a big increase in Minecraft usage during the pandemic. Minecraft saw a 25% increase in new players last month and a 40% spike in multiplayer sessions.
The Verge reports that in 2016, Minecraft sales topped 100-million, and the game hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down. A surge in interest from YouTubers and nostalgia-induced playing saw Minecraft at the top of YouTube’s viewership stats last year.
With developers Mojang acquired by Microsoft in 2014 for $2.5-billion and 50-million copies sold at the time across all of its platforms including PC, Xbox 360 and PS3, the game has no doubt proven a smart buy. Incredible sales growth and momentum ever since has kept players returning to the game for years.
During its acquisition, Microsoft stated that they were interested in the game’s huge following, and the ability to attract future developer talent to the Windows platform.
Minecraft’s humble beginnings saw it start out as a bedroom project, distributed initially as a Java applet on a web forum. The game quickly captured the imagination of thousands of gamers who loved the indie game’s concept of allowing players to shape an environment by crafting and building constructions out of blocks.
It has spawned a giant community that creates replica objects and YouTube tips on how to play Minecraft that are regularly shared with millions of viewers. That popularity means Minecraft is essentially the digital equivalent of Lego blocks, allowing players to create their own worlds that can be shared and edited by others.
Charity through Minecraft
Rendog, with a healthy following on both YouTube and the streaming platform Twitch, set about organising an impressively large charity fundraiser over the weekend by streaming Minecraft. According to Stuff, they managed to raise close to R2-million that will all go towards South Africans who are struggling to make ends meet during the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent nationwide lockdown.
Due to the unbelievable generosity of thousands of people from all over the world tonight, we raised over £75000 for @SOS_Africa during our charity stream with Grian. To put it into perspective, thats over 300000 hot meals for South Africans in desperate need. THANK YOU ALL! RD pic.twitter.com/1wJE4V8IYD
— ReNDoG (@renthedog) May 10, 2020
“We were all completely overwhelmed with emotion,” he says. “Our staff in South Africa were following the event and were constantly in floods of tears.”
Edited by Luis Monzon
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