At 112 million players, more people play Minecraft than live in the UK

Minecraft is the world’s most played video game once again, beating Roblox and Fortnite and gaining 20 million new players in under a year.

When Microsoft first bought Minecraft, for a whopping $2.5 billion (£2.01bn), many thought that they’d paid too much for a franchise that seemed to be on the decline. But that’s not how things have turned out.

According to the latest figures from Microsoft the game now has 112 million people playing it every month. That’s getting close to double the population of the UK and a third of the entire population of the U.S.

Although Minecraft has fallen in and out of fashion over the last 10 years it is currently at a record high, having been popularised again by PewDiePie and other influencers – to the point where more people watch it online than Fortnite.

The new stats come from an interview with Minecraft studio head Helen Chiang, where she told Business Insider Australia that the 112 million figure is a 20 million increase since October 2018.

The increase also means that Minecraft has taken back the lead as the world’s most played video game from Roblox, which seemed to briefly pass it back in August.

Minecraft’s addition to Xbox Game Pass was also partly responsible for the increase, which has also greatly inflated Gears 5 sales figures – despite a disappointing performance elsewhere.

Also contributing to the game’s growing success is that while players tend to grow out of Minecraft when they’re in their early teens many are starting to return to it again as they get older, like people getting back into Lego when they become adults.

‘What we find is that it’s a game that players keep coming back to,’ said Chiang. ‘It may not always be the one that’s in the forefront, because there are a lot of great games that continue to come out, but it’s one that they love to return to.’

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