Today Microsoft and Mojang have announced they will be partnering with NetEase Inc. to licensing Minecraft for release in mainland China. Initially the agreement will see Minecraft Pocket Edition and Minecraft for PC having versions tailored specifically for the Chinese market. However, no mention was made of the possibility for console versions seeing a launch.
The announcement was made on Mojang’s website. Along with the typical press-release, that can be read below, there is also a rather bizarre video where Jens Bergensten, lead developer of Minecraft, calls in Siri and Owen to announce the news.
Today we’re proud to announce an exclusive agreement to license Minecraft for Pocket and PC to a NetEase, Inc. affiliate in mainland China. The plan is to develop a version of Minecraft tailored for the Chinese market. It probably won’t affect most of you, seeing as you’re probably not based in China.
But still, this is significant news and significant news requires significant quotes, so here are two. One from our CEO, and one from NetEase’s.
“We’ll always embrace opportunities to bring Minecraft to new players around the world, widening our community, and giving us a new perspective on our game,” said Jonas Martensson, CEO of Mojang, creators of Minecraft. “NetEase understand our long-term vision for Minecraft and support Mojang’s ideals, so we’re delighted to have them on board. We look forward to welcoming China’s builders and adventurers to the world of Minecraft.”
“We are excited to bring Minecraft to Chinese audiences, and expect our large online community to embrace this preeminent game,” said William Ding, CEO and founder of NetEase, Inc. “With our deep understanding of the Chinese market and our ability to successfully launch world-renowned online and mobile games, we offer a strong platform for the introduction of Minecraft to China’s vast user base. We believe this cooperation could leverage the strengths of both Mojang and NetEase, as well as provide the world’s largest audience with a superior user experience.”
See you soon, China-based Minecrafters! Welcome!
Owen – @bopogamel