Friday, September 12, 2014

MICROSOFT - Trying to Purchase Popular Gaming Company

"Microsoft considers buying gaming gold mine Minecraft" PBS NewsHour 9/10/2014


GWEN IFILL (NewsHour):  There are new reports out of yet another tech giant, in this case Microsoft, trying to purchase a popular gaming company.  It’s part of an industry and market that you may not know about unless you are wise in the ways of Xbox and PlayStation.

Game sales in the U.S. topped $21 billion last year.  The industry often boasts that it earns far more than what Hollywood makes at the U.S. box office.  And more than 70 million people worldwide watch games played as e-sports over the Web or on TV.

Hari Sreenivasan has more from our New York studios about this potential deal and the wider phenomenon.

HARI SREENIVASAN (NewsHour):  In the hit game “Minecraft,” players maneuver through a LEGO-like landscape to build whatever they can imagine or to battle monsters, as seen in this YouTube video by the game’s Swedish creator, Mojang.

WOMAN:  Yes, it’s very popular.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  With more than 50 million copies sold since 2011, “Minecraft” has even contributed to a trend of users simply watching others play online.

MAN: Why did I just do that?

HARI SREENIVASAN:  Now it’s being widely reported that Microsoft is in talks to buy Mojang for more than $2 billion.  The deal isn’t a certainty.

Markus Persson, who came up with “Minecraft,” has stressed the importance of smaller independent developers like Mojang.

MARKUS PERSSON, Game Developer, Mojang:  If you get a game from a big publisher, you kind of expect it to be something different, where, on the other hand, because the indy scene has grown so much and you kind of know where that is, you look at it with different eyes.  And you can actually explore new game ideas and concepts and even styles, which is really cool.

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