It didn’t make the cut as one of the many announcements to emerge from Microsoft’s Build 2017 event this week, but this morning the company unveiled that Minecraft – the game it acquired a few years ago for $2.5 billion – has now made its way to the Nintendo Switch. The new game will include the same features found in console versions, Microsoft says, including the multiplayer mini games, Battle and Tumble.
But it will also take advantage of the Switch’s flexibility, allowing eight players to get together online or play locally if everyone has a Switch; or up to four can play together in a split-screen view on the TV from a single console. Players can also use the device’s kickstand to play in tabletop mode if the TV is unavailable, which will also support up to four players through a split-screen mode. And players can use either Joy-Cons or the Pro Controller, depending on their preferences.
Because the Switch is portable, you can continue to play when you venture out of the home – Microsoft claims the game will run smoothly at 60fps and 720p resolution, no matter if you’re playing on the big screen TV or in the handheld mode.
In this edition of the Minecraft game, Microsoft is also introducing a Super Mario Mash-Up Pack. (The Wii U version has Mario textures and skins, too.)
This includes a Mario-themed world with mushrooms, chomping plants, and the iconic pipes, as well as the Mario music and characters. There are 15 tracks from Super Mario 64 included and 40 characters from Mario games, including Princess Peach, Toad, Yoshi, the Koopalings, Wario, and others.
The Nintendo Switch version of Minecraft adds several extra worlds, too, like Chinese Mythology, Halloween, Festive and Greek Mythology, plus more skin packs including Redstone Specialists, multiple Battle and the Beast skin packs, and two of the Festive packs.
Microsoft says the game is launching today, but will first be available on the Nintendo eShop in North America, before rolling out in Europe and Japan tomorrow. A physical version will arrive in the future.