Pointing to the global COVID-19 pandemic as the primary reason, Mojang has announced that Minecraft Earth will be shutting down later this year. This outdoors-oriented Augmented Reality mobile adaptation of Minecraft will be phased out on June 30, 2021. Players who spent real money on Minecraft Earth will be receiving compensation in the form of Minecraft bonuses.

Minecraft Earth to Sunset on June 30, 2021

While some games like Niantic’s Pokemon GO have attempted to adapt to the pandemic situation with in-game changes and distinct events, Minecraft Earth is a cut loss. The team, in a statement announcing the news, stated that since the game can’t be played as envisioned, the resources used to run it will go elsewhere under the Minecraft umbrella. In the meantime, Minecraft Earth will see one more update, which opens up the game for anyone still interested in trying it out.

The update, released today, makes the following adjustments:

  • Removing real-money transactions
  • Drastically reducing ruby costs
  • Including all completed, unreleased content currently in our pipeline
  • Reducing time requirements for crafting and smelting
  • Replacing unused crafting & smelting boosts with radius boosts of the same level
  • Granting a set of Character Creator items to players who sign in between January 5 and June 30 

Basically, the team wants to give the Minecraft Earth fans a chance to see everything possible before sunset. The official end date is June 30, which is the official cutoff date for support. After that, Minecraft Earth will be unplayable and delisted from marketplaces. On July 1, most player data will be deleted, save for content applicable to other Minecraft spaces such as Minecoin “entitlements.”

Those entitlements are for players with remaining premium currency balances (Rubies) in Minecraft Earth. Any paid Ruby balances will be converted to Minecoins, the premium currency for Minecraft proper. Also, lifetime spenders (anyone who has put money into Minecraft Earth since launch) will receive a free copy of Minecraft’s Bedrock Edition.

Did you get a chance to play and enjoy Minecraft Earth before the pandemic hit? Was the game unplayable after, in your opinion? Let us know what you think over at the Prima Games Facebook and Twitter channels.