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Minecraft Earth could push mobile AR gaming to new heights

Forward-looking: Minecraft Earth could be exactly what the mobile gaming industry needs to further advance the idea of augmented reality gaming. Pokémon Go was a revolutionary step forward for AR gaming and although millions are still playing today, its impact somehow felt limited. Minecraft already has a massive user base, many of which will no doubt be excited to give the mobile AR variant a whirl.

Microsoft as part of its 10th anniversary celebration for Minecraft on Friday officially unveiled Minecraft Earth, a new augmented reality mobile game.

With Minecraft Earth, you’ll be able to create, explore, collect, collaborate and survive like never before. Collaboration is arguably the biggest draw of Minecraft Earth as you’re encouraged to share your creations with others in the real world.

Microsoft’s new game is not a direct translation of Minecraft but rather, an adaptation. It’s built on the familiar Bedrock engine so, as Minecraft Earth game director Torfi Olafsson explained to The Verge, “if you like building Redstone machines, or you’re used to how the water flows, or how sand falls down, it all works.”

Microsoft purchased Minecraft creator Mojang in late 2014 for a staggering $2.5 billion. The acquisition seemed puzzling at the time but Microsoft has made the most of its investment in the years since.

Minecraft Earth launches in beta on Android and iOS this summer.

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