One of the great will-they-won't-they sagas of the Wii U generation has come to an end; Microsoft Studios is bringing Minecraft: Wii U Edition to the eShop on 17th December. The concept and the platform have long seemed suited for each other, yet such has been the wait for it to happen that smaller developers have attempted to fill the gap on the eShop, with reasonable but mixed results.
Of course, the era of the clones - though it's perhaps not fair to describe them as such - is likely coming to an end now that the pop-culture phenomenon is arriving. As many wittily observed through GIFs and memes when reacting to the announcement, however, we're partying like it's 2013 / 2014, which is when it started getting ported to Xbox 360 / PS3 and then PS4 / Xbox One. Microsoft has since bought Mojang and the IP for a huge sum, and the game has been downloaded, bought and played a staggering number of times as it finally lands on Nintendo's system. That said, even as recently as September this year the game's various retail versions combined to secure 10th place in the US NPD charts; that's impressive staying power.
So, we're curious, are you excited about this and counting the days to its release, or is your response a shrug of the shoulders? Perhaps some key facts will help cement your viewpoint:
- The cost in the US will be $29.99 (European pricing is yet to be given), though this is pitched as a 'bundle' as a result of including six free DLC packs - Battle & Beasts Skin Pack, Battle & Beasts 2 Skin Pack, Natural Texture Pack, City Texture Pack, Fantasy Texture Pack and Festive Mash-up Pack.
- There'll be 16 paid DLC skin and texture packs to buy separately at launch, with more to come.
- Exclusive Nintendo content is being developed and will likely appear in 2016 and beyond.
- A physical retail version will come 'later'.
- There's 8-player online and 4-player local mutiplayer.
- Off-TV play is supported.
- Inventory Management won't be on the GamePad screen, at least at launch.
The last one is an odd development, as plenty had considered inventory management on the GamePad to be a potentially defining feature. Some have also questioned the pricing, with Microsoft Studios (as publisher) probably banking on eager Wii U fans being drawn in by the core game and included extras, though some options cost less on rival systems.
With all of that in mind and with the announcement just two days old at the time of writing, we want to know how you feel about it. Are you on the Minecraft hype train and planning to immerse yourself in its world this festive season, or will you be giving it a pass? Let us know in the polls and comments.