Mojang Studios announced that they will stop the mobile augmented reality game Minecraft Earth, which allows players to interact with the Minecraft game installed on GPS data in the real world.
The Minecraft Earth developers confirmed in a new post that they are discontinuing the game with plans to end support on June 30, 2021. Although this is not explicitly stated, the developers pointed to complications in managing an AR game during the covid-19 pandemic that was part of the decision to shut down Minecraft Earth.
The team wrote in the post: “Minecraft Earth was designed around free movement and collaborative play – two things that have become near impossible in the current global situation. 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”.
Other augmented reality games such as Pokemon Go have faced similar covid-19 obstacles during the pandemic.
However, the developer’s support for Minecraft Earth will continue until June 2021 and they will release another update before the end that will allow players to enjoy the game before stopping it.
As part of the update, Minecraft Earth will remove real-money game purchases, and significantly reduce ruby costs, add all contents, completed and unreleased, reduce the time requirements for crafting and smelting, replace unused crafting & smelting boosts with radius boosts of the same level, and offer a set of Character Creator items to players who sign in between January 5 and June 30.
Then on June 30, Mojang will stop supporting content and services for Minecraft Earth completely. This will also mean that the game will not be available for download after this date, and on July 1st the company will delete all Minecraft Earth player data unrelated to Character Creator and Minecoin entitlements.
As an additional gift, all players with paid ruby balances will be granted Minecoins, which they can use on the Minecraft Marketplace to purchase skin and texture packs, maps, and even minigames. And also if anyone ever made a purchase in Minecraft Earth, he will receive a free copy of Minecraft (the Bedrock version) so he can get a fresh start while grabbing some goodies from the Marketplace!