During the Microsoft press conference at E3 this summer it was announced that Minecraft would be coming exclusively to the Xbox 360 and that it would also support Kinect. The indie PC sensation which has dominated YouTube and sold more than 4 million units – while still in beta – has done nothing but continue to grow and today marks the game’s official launch.

The launch means little other than dropping the “beta” status as the game will continue to grow and receive updates just as it has all along, but it is a milestone worth celebrating nonetheless. And that’s exactly what’s happening in Las Vegas right now at the first ever Minecraft convention where the XBLA build of the game is being shown off for the first time.

The event is called MineCon and it is here where the Minecraft creator Notch and the development team at Mojang are showing off the various versions of their hit game as well as their upcoming title, Scrolls, and the first 3rd party game they’ll publish, Cobalt.

Now that the console version of Minecraft has been unveiled, we are able to share the official first look with the game’s first trailer and a batch of new screenshots. For veteran players there’s really not a lot to see. The game looks the same outside of the redesigned console-friendly interface. Before we get to the images, watch this epic trailer:

It’s the little things that matter… like turning right on a 90 degrees angle on a rail track and a room full of people swaying accordingly.

The screenshots reveal environments and creatures no different than what we know and love about the PC version but take note of the two shots of the new inventory and crafting interface. All items are nicely organized into groups which can be quickly cycled through using the Xbox 360 controller’s bumper buttons. This new menu system will also offer descriptions to explain what each item does and what’s needed to craft it, perfect for first-timers.

As a console release, we expect (hope) this version to be very polished, without bugs, framerate issues or other such limitations. Combined with the ability to play it over Xbox Live with friends, the Xbox version of Minecraft should be a huge success, much like it’s already proving to be in its mobile form on Android and iOS devices, becoming a worldwide top seller upon its first 24 hours after launch, according to Mojang.

We are curious about the mods, which define the Minecraft community and helped shape the game as we know it today, and whether or not they’ll be supported on the console, but either way, that doesn’t take away from the creative fun console gamers will now be able to enjoy. After all, the game has already been nominated for a pair of awards for this year’s Spike Video Game Awards.

Are you excited to play Minecraft through Xbox Live on your television?

Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.

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