Thinkwell is honored to have been “selected” to create the Minecraft theme park as reported in the popular parody website National Report.
Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson made headlines recently for his purchase of an outlandish $70 million palatial mansion in Beverly Hills, but it turns out the most expensive residential property sale in Los Angeles history isn’t actually the most eccentric thing the Swedish game developer is doing with his recent $2.5 billion windfall. That honor belongs to the $290 million Minecraft-inspired theme park Notch is trying to build in upstate New York.
According to numerous realtors in and around Binghamton, New York, Notch has been buying up commercial and industrial properties in the city of Binghamton itself, as well as approximately 9 square miles of land a few miles north of Binghamton, not far from Interstate 81. His goal for this property is to build a massive theme park inspired by the hit indie game “Minecraft” for which Notch is famous, where players of all ages explore an Earth-sized planet fighting zombies and building cabins and castles out of 1-meter cubes of dirt, stone, wood, and other resources.
Notch will be putting up $150 million of his own money to build the park, with $140 million coming from other investors, who have not yet been identified. He’s already hired Thinkwell Group, a theme park design company, to oversee the project, and a slew of construction companies in the Binghamton area have been put on notice to allegedly break ground on the park as soon as August of 2015, which Notch reportedly wants to see open by 2018.
Thinkwell staffers claim Notch’s vision is to build a park where “visitors get to live out a Minecraft experience in real life.” It will feature three distinct zones, the biggest of which will be the “Overworld.” This will make up the bulk of the park, where visitors will take in countless rides, live shows, and other attractions, and can even build things with specially-built life-sized blocks. At night, the park will fill up with performers acting out the roles of zombies, skeletons, and even exploding “creeper” monsters, prompting guests to return to their hotel rooms when the park begins to close.
The park will also feature a zone called “The Nether,” where visitors can explore “a subterranean zone filled with lava,” and several more rides. Guests can also explore a third zone, called “The End,” where they’ll team up to battle it out with a life-sized holographic Ender Dragon. But these zones will “only be available to those guests who manage to find `portals’ hidden throughout the park.”
Famous Minecraft Youtuber Direwolf20 will be contributing by designing “The Direwolf Inn,” an on-property 5-star hotel where everything in the building, and the building itself, is built out of 1-meter blocks inspired by the game. Freddie Wong, another famous Youtuber best known for creating the popular “Video Game High School” online TV series, will be designing a ride for the park, though details regarding that ride are unknown.
Thinkwell employees say Notch chose to build the park near Binghamton because the city “has the infrastructure to support something of this magnitude, and it’s an easily-accessible location as well, with airports and highways converging in the area.” However, Notch still has needs approval from Binghamton’s City Council and from New York State itself for the project, though experts say the region’s economic struggles over the past decade and the promise of major tourism dollars will most likely prompt a swift positive vote.