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As Microsoft Prepares Minecraft Earth Closure, Is AR Gaming Failing?

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Microsoft’s Minecraft Earth was supposed to be a game-changer. It was the company’s first augmented reality (AR) game and was supposed to be a smash hit. After-all, it was following the mega-successful Pokémon Go, while also being based on the biggest game of all-time, Minecraft. So, it is still a surprise that Microsoft will shutter Minecraft Earth this June.

However, VentureBeat is asking a wider question about what Minecraft Earth’s demise means for the wider AR gaming scene. Along with the clear decline of Pokémon Go, does this all mean AR gaming ends here?

No, is the answer and the reality is AR gaming had a debut few other gaming technologies have ever had. As it now moves through a period of decline, there’s a lot of positives for the future of the genre.

It’s easy to look at Minecraft Earth and think it has been a failure. In fact, the game had over one million players within a week of its launch in the United States back in 2019. It contributed to a health $2.82 billion in AR gaming revenue that same year. Not bad for a fledgling market.

Pokémon Go was also a thriving game. In fact, Pokémon Go was a victim of its own success, enjoying stratospheric growth within months of release, growth that was ultimately unsustainable. The game was a culture hit and when casual users moved on users and revenues fell.

Consistency

So, it’s easy to think AR gaming has been falling in revenue, especially with Pokémon Go losing millions of users. However, that was not the case in 2020. It turns out Minecraft Earth maintained success and the players who stuck around on Pokémon Go were the loyal gamers willing to spend money.

During last year, AR revenue reached $4.7 billion. That is admittedly $300 million lower than analyst expectations, but it is growth over 2019. That revenue was even achieved during the global COVID-19 pandemic when people could not go outside.

So, why is Microsoft ditching Minecraft Earth. Considering the AR gaming market is likely to explode over the next five years as technology improves, isn’t the company cutting its losses too soon? Weathering the storm would seem to be the better option.

Microsoft seemingly doesn’t see enough return and is likely spending more on the game than it makes. Despite Minecraft Earth wandering into the sunset, I have a feeling this is not the last we will see of Minecraft in the AR realm.

Tip of the day:

The Windows default font these days is Segoe UI, a fairly simple and no-nonsense typeface that’s used across many of Microsoft’s products. However, though some like this subdued style, others look to change Windows font to something with a bit more personality.

Thankfully, Microsoft does let you change Windows fonts, but it doesn’t make it particularly easy. I our tutorial we show you how to change system font in Windows 10, or restore it again if you don’t like the changes.

Source Winbuzzer

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Minecraft

Minecraft ‘Caves and Cliffs Update’: When Will it Launch?

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As Microsoft continues to reap the rewards of Minecraft, the game also continues to deliver for players. Thanks to consistent updates, new maps, worlds, DLCs, features, and extras are frequently available. But what about the Caves and Cliffs Update, which promises to be one of the biggest Minecraft upgrades ever?

You may remember Minecraft developer Mojang first announced the Caves and Cliffs Update at Minecon back in 2019. This update would combine two updates into a single release.

Mojang usually rolls out two major Minecraft updates per year. For example, in 2020 the year started with the Buzzy Bees Update (actually released Dec. 2019) and the Nether Update last June. Both annual updates are major releases adding plenty of new features to the sandbox game.

Minecraft Caves and Cliff was meant to combine two updates for 2021. In other words, this ambitious upgrade would combine 2021’s two updates into one single bumper release. It would also bring one of the biggest ever changes to Minecraft.

Summer Launch

Specifically, Mojang promises the update gives mountains a makeover will completely redoing the whole mining experience in the game. Mojang admits an update of this scale takes time, so when will Minecraft Caves and Cliffs launch?

A specific date has not been given, but the company promises a summer 2021 release. As we get closer to that timeframe schedule, expect to hear more information. Considering other mid-year updates have arrived in June, that would be a good starting point for speculation regarding the Caves and Cliffs Update.

Alongside the changes mentioned, expect the update to come with loads of other features, add-ons, and perks.

Tip of the day:

Worried about your privacy in Windows 10 or want to keep different PCs linked to your Microsoft account strictly separate? We show you how to adjust your Windows 10 sync settings , including the clipboard, activity history/timeline, and themes.

Source Winbuzzer

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