Minecraft? What’s that?
Some of you may have heard about a little indie game that’s been played, bought, modded, and spread around the internet faster than a swarm of starving locusts. Of course, that game is Minecraft. I myself purchased Minecraft (rather smartly I suppose) back when it was still in it’s “Alpha” stage of development. The game still isn’t quite finished yet, but now that the game is progressing through it’s Beta stages, Minecraft has had a surge of increased interest from the general public and has grown even more in popularity.
Not bad for an indie game. One that has over 12 million registered users (that’s six zeros after the 12!), of which over 3.2 million have actually purchased the game (more than 3,200,000!). On an average day, Minecraft sells close to 10 thousand copies (10,000!!). As I write this information down I wouldn’t be surprised if another 50 people bought the game! There goes another one… oh see, and another one!
Just check out this awesome fan made trailer for Minecraft if you don’t have a clue of what I’m talking about!
The creator of Minecraft, Markus Persson (also known as “Notch”), has been working on Minecraft full-time, and even with his success, it doesn’t look as if he’ll be slowing down any time soon. Yes, now everybody and their mother (in the gaming industry) want a piece of “Notch” and his Minecraft intellectual property. However, as tempting as any offer might be, Notch has always kept his integrity and hasn’t forgotten where he comes from and how he got here. I think it’s fair to say that Markus is a pretty rad guy.
One of the big questions that people keep asking though, is why won’t he put Minecraft up on Steam? It’s obviously the most popular gaming site for digital downloads, with an enormous library and featuring more games than there is time to play them in a single lifespan. Notch himself loves the digital distribution service, so why not add his game to Steam? Here’s a little excerpt from his answer on the subject:
“At PAX, I got asked why we’re not on Steam with Minecraft, and I had to answer the question straight out for the first time. So I’ll repeat what I said on here, because openess is awesome.”
“Steam is the best digital distribution platform I’ve ever seen. I’ve spent incredible amounts of money on it, and I own a crazy amount of games on it.”
Being on Steam limits a lot of what we’re allowed to do with the game, and how we’re allowed to talk to our users.“
Personally, I agree that Steam is the best digital distribution platform (IMHO). However, I have no problem buying games from an indie developer or their website either, as long as they accept PayPal as a form of payment. Having access to a digital distribution site (where they keep your billing info so you don’t have to enter it numerous times), makes buying games online a convenient and efficient way to purchase, keep track of, and play your games. With that said, there are some limitations. Some of these limitations are pointed out in an honest response at Notch’s Blog. Be sure to read the full Blog post regarding why Minecraft isn’t up on Steam over here, where Notch posts his Blogs, aptly named “The Word of Notch“. 🙂