Notch on why Minecraft still isn't on Steam

Tom Francis


After the spectacular success of the Steam Summer Sale, I wondered again why Minecraft still isn't on there. Looking back at developer Markus Persson's blog post on the subject a year ago, it seemed like the things they couldn't previously do on Steam are now possible. So I asked him: that?

It's a candid and interesting reply, full of intriguing hints, so I'll quote it in full to avoid taking anything out of context:

Yeah, it seems like pretty much all the things we wanted to do are possible on Steam now, which is brilliant! Since I made that blog post, Minecraft has kept growing very fast (and it selling faster than ever), which combined with us not being on Steam leads to some potentially interesting strategic positions. I'm not quite sure what those are, but we're a bit wary to submit Minecraft to Steam without knowing more about what we want to do.

As much as I love Steam, I do somewhat worry about the PC as a gaming platform becoming owned by a single entity that takes 30% of all PC games sold. I'm hoping for a future where more games can self-publish and use social media and friends to market their games. Perhaps there's something we could do to help out there? I don't know. If nothing else, we might work as an inspiration for people to self-publish.

It's probably obvious from this reply, but we're trying to figure out what we want to do long term with the position we have now. We only recently decided to stay as independent as possible and cancelled an unannounced project that we were doing in collaboration with someone else. It's going to be an interesting future.

That project is probably the one codenamed Rex Kwon Do, which we know nothing about - Notch tweeted recently to say they'd cancelled it to focus on projects they wholly own.

He's not kidding about Minecraft still selling fast. In the last 24 hours, Minecraft sold another 11,660 copies at $27.95, a daily revenue of $314,237. In other words, it's still taking almost a million dollars every three days.

From a gamer's perspective, does Steam's dominance worry you at all? Could Mojang help, and how?

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