Microsoft today confirmed news that emerged last week: It is buying Minecraft maker Mojang for $2.5 billion. That price tag doesn't get Microsoft Minecraft creator Markus Persson (who hasn't held his tongue about Microsoft in the past), nor the Stockholm-based gaming company's two other founders, reports the Wall Street Journal. The Journal sees the buy as a partially surprising one for Satya Nadella, who, after taking the helm in February, said Microsoft needed to focus on selling software. But the Verge and the Journal run down three things the acquisition of the insanely popular Lego-like multiplayer game's maker gets Microsoft:
It gives Microsoft "an asset with a loyal and largely young following," could help the company woo developers, and gives Microsoft the ability to add game features available only on Windows. (There currently isn't a Windows Phone version of the game, but the Verge sees that coming; the game will continue to be available on iOS and Android.) An interesting side note: the Verge points out that Microsoft can use cash held overseas to foot the bill, "rather than bringing funds back to the US and getting taxed on a similar buyout back home." As for Persson, "He’s decided that he doesn’t want the responsibility of owning a company of such global significance," says Mojang. "He'll continue to do cool stuff though. Don't worry about that."