Well, this is rather surprising: Microsoft is in talks to buy Minecraft's developer, Mojang, according to a few different sources. The Wall Street Journal says that the ever loose-lipped "person familiar with the matter" has noted the deal is valued at over $2 billion, while reps for both Redmond and the Swedish developer remain mum on the subject. We've reached out to Microsoft and, as expected, were told by a company spokesperson that the outfit doesn't comment on rumors or speculation, as well. If true, this doesn't come too far after outspoken Minecraft mastermind Markus "Notch" Persson recently changing his stance on the Facebook/Oculus VR purchase. Maybe he's come around to the idea of no-longer being one of the world's largest indie developers? Hopefully we'll know rather soon. Until then, you'll find us playing with Steve on Xbox One.
Update: A few new developments have surfaced, including details on the deal and when it should be completed. The New York Times reports that Microsoft approached Mojang as early as three months ago and the purchase should be finished by the end of this month. Perhaps most interesting though is that should the deal go through, Notch might not stay past six months after the ink has dried. Why? He likely wants to make sure his employees are being well taken care of. According to Bloomberg's sources, Notch (not Microsoft) actually made the approach to Redmond given the positive experience Mojang had bringing Minecraft to the Xbox One. Bloomberg also reports that Notch will help with the transition into ownership, but doesn't plan on staying long beyond that -- this isn't Microsoft forcing him out, it could be him looking to try his hand at something else.
Update 2: Reuters hears that Microsoft could unveil the deal (reportedly up to $2.5 billion) on September 15th.