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Minecraft goes to China: Microsoft and Mojang expand reach of blockbuster game

Microsoft Minecraft
GeekWire Illustration.

Minecraft, the wildly popular game that allows players to create infinite online worlds, will soon be available in China.

The game, which Microsoft acquired with the $2.5 billion purchase of Mojang in 2014, will be adapted for the Chinese market and released in partnership with Chinese affiliate NetEase.

NetEase announced the partnership with Microsoft and Mojang, the game maker still operating Minecraft under Microsoft’s umbrella, in a press release Friday. The deal allows NetEase to license Minecraft mobile and PC editions exclusively for five years.

Minecraft’s audience has exploded in the five years since the game launched. Today there are more than 100 million registered Minecraft players, the majority of which are teens and adolescents.

Entering the Chinese market seems a logical next step for Microsoft and Mojang, opening up access to nearly 700 million internet users.

“We are excited to bring Minecraft to Chinese audiences, and expect our large online community to embrace this preeminent game,” said NetEase CEO William Ding in the press release.

Source: Geekwire Games

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