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Netflix And WildBrain Digging Up Minecraft Animated Series

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The latest video game to get its own animated adaption will be Minecraft, Netflix announced today. They’re working with Mojang to mine and construct a CG cartoon series focusing on “new characters,” which may mean Steve and Alex won’t have roles.

Animation studio WildBrain will be handling the show, and they certainly have experience — not just with Netflix but with video game based IPs. Their most recent project has been Sonic Prime, and before that they created Ninjago: Dragons Rising and the new Carmen Sandiego.

To those who will point out Minecraft doesn’t have a story…Lego didn’t have a story either and look at all the Lego TV shows and movies there are now. Turns out a concept revolving around building anything is very malleable, who knew?

Minecraft is an institution for several reasons, but its biggest contribution to culture may be inventing the Game That Sticks Around Forever. Prior to Minecraft, every video game had a shelf life. Games would be introduced, rise in the sales charts, fall, and then never be sold again. Or if they were sold again, it would be in a remake with “updated graphics.” Gamers, once upon a time, tended to snub any game that didn’t have cutting-edge looks.

When Minecraft arrived for PC in 2009, it deliberately used blocky graphics that were already dated. This style choice may have been its wisest move, as it gave the game a distinctive ageless look that helped it survive generation after generation. To this day, despite its age, Minecraft still places in the Top 10 of US video game sales charts. It would pave the way for future Games That Stick Around Forever like Fortnite, Rocket League and (at least for now) GTA V.

Minecraft has flirted with television before but has never had its own series. “Minecraft: Story Mode,” a narrative game by Telltale, had a Netflix version for a few years (it was taken down in 2022). Further back, one of the last Adventure Time episodes before its finale was set in the world of Minecraft.

In related news, there’s supposed to be a Minecraft movie in 2025, this one being live-action, though no one is certain how that’s going to work.

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