Minecraft on Oculus Rift Canceled Due to Facebook Purchase

By Luke Caulfield , Updated Mar 26, 2014 07:39 AM EDT

Want to make the quintessential sandbox game Minecraft that much more engrossing? Then best look to Sony's Project Morpheus, or Microsoft's rumored VR headset, because Mojang's signature title is no longer a prospect for the Oculus Rift, and all thanks to Facebook's recent ten figure purchase of the peripheral, just a month after the company's $19 billion purchase of What'sApp.

"We were in talks about maybe bringing a version of Minecraft to Oculus. I just cancelled that deal," wrote Markus "Notch" Persson via Twitter. With the social media soapbox's character limitations, Notch went into further detail in an update on his personal blog.

Notch had been in discussion with the Rift team for about two weeks to provide a stripped down, workable version of Minecraft for the peripheral, akin to the PI edition, and in the midst of chewing the fat on how the deal would work. Then, as Notch puts it, "Facebook buys them." And that was all she wrote.

But why? Surely Minecraft on the social network could expand the game's audience even further. Though, it's not like Mojang really needs the fiscal alley-oop. Despite the business advantage such a brokerage could provide, Notch explained that the company's goals are not in line with his own.

"Facebook is not a company of grass-roots tech enthusiasts. Facebook is not a game tech company. Facebook has a history of caring about building user numbers, and nothing but building user numbers. People have made games for Facebook platforms before, and while it worked great for a while, they were stuck in a very unfortunate position when Facebook eventually changed the platform to better fit the social experience they were trying to build."

It's not the end of a virtual Minecraft though, as Notch admitted that he "definitely want[s] to be a part of VR," but it won't be under the thumb of Mark Zuckerberg's notorious network.

"Their motives are too unclear and shifting, and they haven't historically been a stable platform," continued Notch. "There's nothing about their history that makes me trust them, and that makes them seem creepy to me."

"I understand this is purely a business deal, and I'd like to congratulate both Facebook and the Oculus owners. But this is where we part ways."

Notch's post didn't address the idea of trying to develop his signature game for either Sony or Microsoft's VR headsets, but he didn't dismiss it either. With the game already a success for both the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and a version planned for the PS4 and Xbox One, I wouldn't be surprised if someone from Sony and/or Microsoft are already coming up with yet another way to woo the man behind Mojang.

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