Minecraft is 10 🎉
We count down seven milestones in the history of this legendary game.
Create, explore and survive!
A decade after it first took the world by storm, Minecfraft is showing no signs of slowing down.
And with more than 150 million copies sold, the blocky world-building phenomenon remains one of the most popular – and successful – games ever made.
What’s the secret to Minecraft’s enduring appeal? Its open-ended, do-what-you-want accessibility, believes Jason Major, development lead for Minecraft’s Bedrock Engine.
“If you want to be an adventurer and roam the countryside slaying hostile mobs, you can do that,” says Major. “If you want to build the mansion of your dreams, or a Hobbit hole in the side of a mountain, you can do that.”
As we sculpt a giant birthday cake out of granite and quartz, here’s a look back at our favourite Minecraft moments.
The humble beginning (May 2009)
On May 17 2009, Minecraft is released to the public on PC, in rudimentary form. The game generates tons of word-of-mouth buzz and, before long, serious cred for its Swedish development studio, Mojang. This is the beginning of something big. Really big.
Mining on the move (October 2011)
Minecraft lands on the App Store. And with intuitive touch controls and buttery-smooth performance, players can suddenly build worlds everywhere they go. It’s a commuter’s dream – until you’re so engrossed in your tiny, teeming world that you miss your stop.
Programming rocks! (December 2013)
A mobile update introduces a host of new items that can be crafted from redstone, a rare material found in the game.
Before long, fans are creating wildly complex contraptions that run on real-world programming concepts – like an automated assembly line that brews magic potions. Some instructors even use the game to teach coding fundamentals to their students.
The means to an End (December 2016)
Mobile players get their first taste of the End, a dark dimension full of exotic creatures – and some of the game’s most precious loot.
For fans of Minecraft’s solo-focused Survival mode, making it to the End is a crowning achievement. Making it out alive, especially when going face-to-face with the fearsome Ender Dragon, is another matter entirely.
Joining forces (September 2017)
After a Herculean engineering effort, Minecraft developers merge the desktop, mobile and console versions of the game into a single platform (and to signal the change, the mobile game goes from being called “Minecraft: Pocket Edition” to simply “Minecraft”).
With this “Better Together” update, a player on iPad can link up with friends on consoles and PC – whether for peaceful co-op exploration or massive, Hunger Games–style battles.
Into the deep (July 2018)
The Update Aquatic brings Minecraft’s mobile oceans to life with underwater ruins, mysterious shipwrecks and not-quite-drowned zombies.
When players aren’t busy swimming with dolphins, they’re building oceanic mansions made of glittering glass.
Bringing it home (April 2019)
Nearly 10 years to the month after its first release, Minecraft revamps in-game settlements with the Village & Pillage update.
There are tons of new building materials, a bunch of new critters (including cats, at long last), and a wider, weirder assortment of villagers.
So where does Minecraft go next? Well, with forthcoming augmented reality game Minecraft Earth it’ll be bleeding into the real world. Stay tuned for more details soon.