I guess we’ll find out to what extent this selling Minecraft stuff is real, or which parts of it are real, in the next few days. I saw Notch at PAX once, years ago, a fact that has cemented my role as Cool Dad for eternity with my son and his fellows. The last time I said anything to Notch was after he was dealing with the fallout from the EULA changes, to offer words of comfort from someone who has experience being Internet Satan. I think that had to get tiring for him. I think doing the best you can, the best that can be expected of any finite entity, and still getting fucked in the eye-hole is a hard business.
Two billion dollars, the number they’re throwing around, isn’t really money anymore. It has a Dynastic quality. Two billion dollars might as well be The Spice they talk about in Dune. I would love to have that! I know exactly what I’d do. But it’s only partially the Product that is being purchased, only partly the growing services platform. If you don’t hang around with Children Of A Certain Age, you might not know exactly what is being bought here. They’re functionally purchasing a generation. Two billion dollars starts to look like a steal.
People are worried that this means Minecraft won’t exist anywhere but the PC or the Xbox, which is reasonable I think, but everyone who would be making those kinds of decisions over there is still relatively new to their job. They’re in a position to show that This Is A Different Microsoft than the monolithic, witless Ettin that crashed around in The Nineties and what are sometimes called The Oughts. I think that Sun Tzu would say that True Victory means being indispensable on your competitor’s platforms. It’s completely possible to do this right, if they want to.