The immensely popular PC sandbox game Minecraft was supposed to leave beta status on November 11, 2011 but that date has been pushed back. Mojang Studios is changing the release date because the game's creator, Markus Persson, also known as Notch, wants to find a good venue for MinecraftCon and the date 11/11/11 is fully booked.
The release date was supposed to coincide with several other games and movies, and Notch gave it the unofficial tagline "us too." Now he's being forced to change the date, speculating that it could be a week later. More details will follow as soon as a venue has been booked. When it finally ships, Minecraft will be available for €20.00 ($28.87); right now it's still in beta and goes for €14.95 ($21.58).
Notch also confirmed that Minecraft is coming to the Xbox 360 this winter. The new version of the game, which doesn't have a name yet, will be designed specifically for console play. It will feature (but not require) Kinect support, and will be an exclusive Xbox 360 title.
The Xbox 360 version will join Minecraft - Pocket Edition, an Android port. The game will be arriving on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play first, before it shows up for other Android devices. The Xperia Play was likely chosen because it has dedicated gaming buttons. The price of the app is still unknown, nor do we have a release date or specific exclusivity period for the Xperia Play, but we do know there is already working code, courtesy of the video released last month.
"On both these platforms, I'm going to be more secretive about giving out details," Persson said in a statement. "This is because there are actual PR budgets on them, and I don't want to mess up any big plans. I will be the game designer on both new Minecraft titles, but I won't be involved in the programming as I'm focused on the PC version of Minecraft."
Mojang Studios is currently working on Minecraft Beta 1.7, which Notch refers to as the "adventure update." Details are being kept secret so users can enjoy a few surprises, though it is known that exploration and combat will become more rewarding. Modding support is also coming on a small scale with version 1.7. The source code will be given out to a very small group of people before the release of version 1.7, followed by the modding API.
Minecraft was originally released (now referred to as the classic version) on May 17, 2009. It entered Indev status on December 23, 2009, Infdev status on February 27, 2010, alpha status on June 28, 2010, and finally beta status on December 20, 2010.