Back in 2019, Microsoft launched Minecraft Earth, a real-world Minecraft experience that felt a bit like Pokemon Go. The game was shown off at Apple’s WWDC conference and at the time, looked like it was going to be another success for Microsoft.
But one pandemic later and the game that had a lot of potential is shutting down. As announced in the Minecraft blog, the servers will be turned off in June of 2021 and there is one final update that is rolling out today.
Today’s update removes real-money transactions, reduced ruby costs, reduced crafting and smelting requirements, and essentially, make it much easier to experience the entire game’s mechanics before the plug is pulled.
Importantly, for those who have outstanding balances in the game, they will be converted to Minecoins that can be used in the Minecraft Marketplace. If you need more information, you can view the full FAQ, here.
It’s not all that surprising that this title failed to catch on because of the pandemic. When your game is based on human interaction and moving around in the real world, that’s a recipe for failure during 2020.