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Microsoft-owned Mojang has made the call to close down its Minecraft AR game Minecraft Earth, ending the location-based game's run less than two years after first launch.
Mojang says that the decision was driven by difficulties of the current pandemic, which has understandably knocked the wind out of the location based social play Minecraft Earth is built around.
"As a result, we have made the difficult decision to re-allocate our resources to other areas that provide value to the Minecraft community and to end support for Minecraft Earth in June 2021," reads a blog post.
The announcement comes paired with the game's final update, which removes real-money transactions from the game, reducing resource time and material costs for in-game crafting, and releasing a batch of content that was planned to launch later in the game's lifespan.
After that June 30 cutoff, Minecraft Earth will vanish from app stores and existing players will no longer be able to login and play the game. Players that spent real money on the game at any point since its debut will also snag a free copy of Minecraft proper.
"That being said, we want to take a moment to thank all of the players and creators that are bringing new adventures, mobs, and free in-game items for the community to enjoy while we finalize our timeline for sunsetting the game," continues the blog.
"Your feedback and creations brought this game to an entirely different level, from the regular build challenges you absolutely smashed to the incredible builds you shared on social media. We’re eternally grateful for the amazing talent in the Minecraft community. This was not an easy decision, and we’re doing everything we can to make sure you get the most out of Minecraft Earth before it sunsets."