Minecraft: The Rise, Fall, and Rise Again.


By: Joshua Zhen, Journalist

Minecraft, a first-person, open world, and 3-d block game.  But, how did this game make children rise, fall, and then explode in popularity again? In 2009, Markus Persson “Notch” a single developer created a game, a one-of-a-kind game.  The game was coded in Java and on June 30, 2010, an alpha version of the game was released, and even though there wasn’t a certain name it would be known from now on as Minecraft.

After the Alpha version of Minecraft, it became to start picking up popularity and founded the company Mojang Studios.  As the game entered a beta phase Mojang hired new employees and the game picked up popularity with the addition of survival mode. And on November 11, 2011, the full game was released and was an immediate success in the gaming world.  After Notch stepped down as lead designer and Jen “Jeb” Bergensten now had full creative control of Minecraft.  In 2013, Minecraft had hit its peak.  Especially with the rise of YouTube creators playing Minecraft, this was Minecraft’s peak of concurrent players.

Then tragedy struck, Microsoft had bought Mojang, Minecraft began declining in players.  Because of Minecraft’s very broad objectives, people didn’t see the point in just exploring and not going anywhere.  Even with the new releases in new “mobs” creatures and various items many of these weren’t very interesting.  And in 2019 Minecraft was almost on the verge of being a dead game until one YouTuber stepped in.  This was PewDiePie. PewDiePie is a Swedish YouTuber with over 110 million subscribers today.  PewDiePie started a let’s play series which averaged 10 million views per video, and this gave Minecraft the recovery they needed to come back.  In 2019 their google searches boosted 76% and even surpassed Fortnite in google searches.  And on YouTube in 2019 Minecraft had amassed over 100.2 billion views.  Minecraft skyrocketed even more with popular YouTubers such as Dream, Tommyinnit, and Wilbur Soot joining the fray, boosting this game even higher than ever before. Now Minecraft is one of the most influential indie games in gaming and has become one of the most played games in the world.  Minecraft is more than just a blocky game it’s part of much of society now. Now my question is how do you think  Minecraft can maintain its popularity?