A Dundee-based videogames design studio is toasting its success after one of its titles surged past 176 million global sales, making it the best-selling game of all time, according to the most recent figures.
Chris van der Kuyl, whose company 4J Studios developed a console and handheld version of the hugely popular Minecraft, hopes its runaway success can be an inspiration for budding developers in the City of Discovery.
The game, which allows players to build using a variety of different blocks in a 3D procedurally generated world, was originally released by Swedish developers Mojang but owes a large part of its success to the versions later created by the Dundee studio.
The title celebrated its tenth anniversary this week by releasing a special theme park map and confirming its staggering new sales record.
Mr van der Kuyl said the game’s popularity had been “utterly astounding” for its developers, who he insisted had no idea it was set to become such a major global hit.
“When started working on this game around none to 10 years ago, we had no idea it was going to be the most successful game of all time,” he said.
“It’s amazing how just year after year more people have bought into it.
“We’ve absolutely loved being part of the Minecraft journey and seeing fans around the world enjoying it – that really is what you get into this industry for.”
The game’s sales figures are based on unit sales across its entire lifetime on every platform, including mobile. The figure is the largest ever recorded for a video game but it is understood Tetris could retain the top spot when updated numbers are released.
In a post on Microsoft’s website marking the anniversary of Minecraft’s release, creative director Saxs Persson wrote: “This is an incredibly exciting time for Minecraft.
“Ten years ago today, the game launched on PC. Now, Minecraft has sold more than 176 million copies to-date in virtually every country in the world.”
Mr van der Kuyl hailed the quality of talent coming through in Dundee and said there is “no reason” why the city could not produce the next video game phenomenon.
“If you look at the list of the best selling games of all time, two of the biggest titles have strong links to the city,” he said.
“It’s phenomenal that Scotland, and specifically Dundee, have had such a big part to play. I hope young people will look at that and think there is no reason they can’t do that as well.
“We have great talent coming out of the university and great companies, from the newer studios to more established ones like our own.”