The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Microsoft is in talks to buy Swedish game developer Mojang, best known for its block-based zombie survival building game Minecraft. Citing a "person with knowledge of the matter," the purchase would value the developer at more than $2 billion.
The purchase would be a surprising one. Mojang founder Markus "Notch" Persson has been critical of Microsoft, claiming that Windows 8 could be "very very bad" for indie developers. When Facebook bought VR goggle company Oculus earlier this year, Persson cancelled development of a virtual reality version of Minecraft, saying that "Facebook is not a company of grass-roots tech enthusiasts.".
The price is also remarkable. Minecraft is the only Mojang game that's reasonably complete. Card strategy game Scrolls is currently in beta, and planned space-based sandbox game 0x10c was cancelled in 2013.
If the sale goes through, Mojang will join the likes of 343 Industries, new developers of the Halo series, Turn 10 Studios, developers of the Forza series, and Rare, developers of the Kinect Sports series, as part of Microsoft Studios.