Minecraft, the hit independent game made by developer Mojang, has been downloaded by over 25 million people, managing to rake in around $80 million (€60 million) for the small indie studio.
Minecraft started out as a small project made by a single developer, Markus “Notch” Persson, but it quickly exploded in terms of popularity, even if it wasn’t even completely ready for release.
Since 2010, when the game became public, Notch founded Mojang, his own studio, and kept on working on the new game by adding all sorts of features, culminating with the release of the final version late last year.
During this time, according to financial records via FT
, Minecraft was downloaded 25 million times and over 5 million people paid for it.
This resulted in around $80 million in terms of earnings for Mojang, which currently employs 25 people as well as several full-time consultants.
More money also arrived from merchandising, as partnerships with ThinkGeek, Jinx and Happy Socks resulted in a profit of over $1 million (€754,000) for the studio.
Mojang is also looking to expand the Minecraft brand and several Hollywood companies have even approached the studio with ideas for a special TV show.
"We've been approached by a number of high-profile Hollywood producers and asked to do TV shows," Mojang’s Carl Manneh said. "We may do that. It's hard when you don't have any experience and someone comes to throw these ideas around. We have so much to focus on with just the game development and growing the business. But if the right idea comes along and the right people that we'd want to work with, we'd say why not?"
Seeing as how Minecraft is getting ready to debut on the Xbox 360
in May, you can expect another surge in popularity for the indie game, as well as a big increase in profit for Mojang, which is currently working on quite a few new projects.