The Game Thinking Blog

notch holy sinner

The story of Minecraft: From indie game hero to billionaire schmuck

On the morning of June 14, 2014, Notch – born as Markus Persson – fired a momentous tweet. Worn down by social media haters and unmatchable expectations of his fans, he asked: “Who wants to buy my company?” Someone in Redwood picked up the phone, and Microsoft eventually bought Mojang and the game Minecraft for about 2.5 billion dollars.

How did Notch create Minecraft and manage to pull this stunt? What are the rules of Game Thinking, which led to this magnificent transaction?

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Game Thinking spielerisch die Welt retten

Save the world through play

When we talk to people about Game Thinking for the first time, we often cause astonishment: “People pay you to play? And there are follow-up projects?” Even my wife – a lawyer – asks me, “Are you going to work today, or is it a play day again?” We’re not hard-boiled con men who cheat shareholders out of dividends. Play in a professional context creates value for “the players,” their organizations, and society. Game Thinking sounds like a luxurious funtivity, but it has tangible benefits. But why do we need Playful Organizations, Economies, and Societies, especially during digital transformation? Based on four theses on digital transformation and play, I conclude that only playful organizations are innovative enough in the long term

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