With the announcement last week that beta 1.7 would be delayed because of Mojang going to some trade show in the States, it seemed like there might be a drought of Minecraft-related news. Except that trade show is E3, which is basically video game Christmas.
At their press conference today, Microsoft announced that Minecraft would be coming to XBLA as an exclusive. Of course, what does "exclusive" mean in this context? Millions of people are already playing the game on any computer that is java-capable...which is just about every OS out there, is it not? And Minecraft is already coming to Sony Ericsson's Xperia Play - emphasis on the "Sony", seeing as we're talking about exclusivity here. So it would seem this means Microsoft gets home console exclusivity. Mojang's commander-in-chief Markus Persson (aka. Notch) has been clear that the PC/Mac/Linux and mobile versions aren't going anywhere; that being said, Notch is usually quite transparent (one could perhaps even say "verbose") on both Twitter and his blog, but in regards to this matter he hasn't been as forthcoming as usual, most likely because of "PR restrictions."
But there's more to Microsoft's announcement than that: Kinect support. The American software giant seems to have taken Kinect's lack of interesting content, critics' strongest issue with its motion control system, to heart. The addition of Minecraft to Kinect's lineup is an intriguing idea, but how Minecraft will ultimately be translated in to motion control remains to be seen. As anyone who has played Minecraft could tell you, a straightforward translation of the game's controls to Kinect would be a recipe for repetitive stress injury.
All that said, the folks from Mojang will be hanging around E3 for the remainder of the conference, so there may well be more news to come. We'll keep you updated with whatever happens.
To our constant readers: Sigil news will be coming back next week. We've bid the Twilight Piglet adieu for now (thanks to our readers for suggesting "Twiglet" as an appropriate nickname for it) and are back to work on Sigil proper. More on that on the 13th!
For one more video about the Minecraft on Xbox, take the jump.