Notch: "Mojang sale is not about the money, it’s about my sanity"

Ben Parfitt
Notch: "Mojang sale is not about the money, it’s about my sanity"

Markus ‘Notch' Persson has said that the growth of Minecraft and the influence the game now exerts are the reasons behind his decision to sell Mojang.

The $2.5bn acquisition at the hands of Microsoft was confirmed today, with a statement from Mojang saying that Persson doesn't want the responsibility of owning a company of such global significance” and that the pressure of owning Minecraft became too much for him to handle”.

Now in a personal statement on his website Persson has he never set out to change the world – he's just a guy who makes games for fun.

I don't see myself as a real game developer. I make games because it's fun, and because I love games and I love to program, but I don't make games with the intention of them becoming huge hits, and I don't try to change the world,” he said.

A relatively long time ago, I decided to step down from Minecraft development. Jens was the perfect person to take over leading it, and I wanted to try to do new things. At first, I failed by trying to make something big again, but since I decided to just stick to small prototypes and interesting challenges, I've had so much fun with work. I wasn't exactly sure how I fit into Mojang where people did actual work, but since people said I was important for the culture, I stayed.

I was at home with a bad cold a couple of weeks ago when the internet exploded with hate against me over some kind of EULA situation that I had nothing to do with. I was confused. I didn't understand. I tweeted this in frustration.

Later on, I watched the This is Phil Fish video on YouTube and started to realize I didn't have the connection to my fans I thought I had. I've become a symbol. I don't want to be a symbol, responsible for something huge that I don't understand, that I don't want to work on, that keeps coming back to me.

I'm not an entrepreneur. I'm not a CEO. I'm a nerdy computer programmer who likes to have opinions on Twitter.”

Notch also touched upon the sensitive subject of the abuse that many modern game developers – especially those that exist in the public eye – have to endure.

Considering the public image of me already is a bit skewed, I don't expect to get away from negative comments by doing this, but at least now I won't feel a responsibility to read them,” he added.

I'm aware this goes against a lot of what I've said in public. I have no good response to that. I'm also aware a lot of you were using me as a symbol of some perceived struggle. I'm not. I'm a person, and I'm right there struggling with you.

I love you. All of you. Thank you for turning Minecraft into what it has become, but there are too many of you, and I can't be responsible for something this big. In one sense, it belongs to Microsoft now. In a much bigger sense, it's belonged to all of you for a long time, and that will never change.

It's not about the money. It's about my sanity.”

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