Minecraft was developed and first released to the public by independent video game designer Markus “Notch” Persson, and published by the company Mojang in 2009. In November 2011, Jens Bergensten, also known as Jeb, took over creative control and released the full version of the game after gradual updates.
Minecraft was originally created as a sandbox independent video game. Part exploratory and part creative building, it has won many awards since 2011, such as the Innovation Award, Best Debut Game Award and Best Downloadable Game. As of 2014, nearly 54 million copies of the game have been sold for all platforms. On September 2014, Microsoft bought Mojang for an all-cash deal of $2.5 billion, which granted the company ownership of the game’s intellectual property.