Is Minecraft creator Notch a sellout?

3 min read


People seem to despise success. Whenever anybody becomes famous or successful – whatever the reason – they end up being the target of hate, vitriol and general chagrin. Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson is wildly successful, – and for good reason. Minecraft has become a phenomenon, a sensation that’s changed the way people look at games. And since being bought out by Microsoft, Persson has been regularly accused of “selling out.”

Asked by a fan (via Gamespot) if he thought he was a “sellout” for agreeing to sell to Microsoft, Persson replied on Twitter saying that: “I kinda feel like I am, but I still feel like I made the right choice. I guess some things always come at a cost.”

Microsoft officially acquired Mojang last year in November for a staggering $2.5 billion. That’s not selling out – that’s making very smart, informed decisions. It’s not like Notch was working on Minecraft any more anyway; he left that in the capable hands of the rest of Mojang long ago.

Stuck betwixt a rock and a hard place, Notch says that had he continued with Minecraft, he’d be seen as a one trick pony. The other option is to be seen as a sellout.

Persson said: “The one-trick pony thing was hard to deal with. Matching the insane success of Minecraft would be impossible. I’m OK with it now.”

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He’s back to doing what he wants to. He’s making prototypes for games for the hell of it; prototypes that he doesn’t intend to show to the public – relinquishing the fear of public appraisal of things that could never hope to match the success of his block world builder.

That’s not selling out. That’s making your dreams a reality.

Last Updated: February 19, 2015

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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