Update: Minecraft 1.0 is now available for download. Check this GamePRo story.
Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson will unveil the full version of the sandbox construction game originally written in Java, at the MineCon convention in Las Vegas over the weekend.
Although the beta tag will be removed, Minecraft won't be a "finished product" as it would still be receiving its regular updates.
"The last few weeks have been incredibly stressful and emotional in many ways, and I feel so relieved to finally have a finished version of Minecraft to release to the world on Friday. But that doesn't mean we'll stop working on Minecraft! We'll keep adding to the game just as we have so far, and we have many exciting plans for the next year... Some of these will be announced fairly soon," Persson said in his The Word of Notch blog Tuesday.
Although the graphics appear outdated, has bugs, has an interface that takes time to get used to, the game with a blocky retro-feel has been a global phenomenon.
Video game developer Mojang has already sold more than 4 million copies of the beta version of Minecraft, which has been continually updated and patched since an alpha version was released in 2009. Millions of copies of the classic version, which is available for free, have been downloaded.
The official version, Minecraft 1.0, will be available for $28.95. Gamers who have purchased the beta version (at $21.95) can update to the full version starting Friday.
At the MineCon at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas Nov. 18 and 19, Persson will show for the first time the full version, dubbed Minecraft 1.0. The game has a huge fan base, is highly addictive, and has reaped citations for providing a unique outlet for creativity.
Tickets to the MineCon are sold-out. But the event will be shown via live streaming by IGN.
The event will include the official launch of Minecraft; keynote speeches, including one by Persson; building and costume contests; Minecraft-themed breakout classes; exhibits by gaming and Minecraft-related companies; and commemorative merchandise. All MineCon attendees will receive a free cloak, code to unlock alpha versions of Mojang's other upcoming game, Scrolls, as well as an additional non-Mojang game, Cobalt.
A version for iOS devices is already available at US$9.99 or AU$7.49 at the Apple App Store. An Xbox 360 version of Minecraft is also in production and is set to launch sometime in 2012.
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