Just a couple of weeks will mark the 10-year anniversary of sandbox building phenomenon Minecraft. As the owner of the title, Microsoft will be in charge of the upcoming anniversary plans, but there’s one person who definitely won’t be a part of those: Marcus Persson, better known as Notch, who created the game in 2009 and sold it to Microsoft for $2.5 billion in 2014.
Speaking with Variety, Microsoft explained that, due to his “comments and opinions”, Notch would not be involved. “His comments and opinions do not reflect those of Microsoft or Mojang and are not representative of ‘Minecraft,” said a Microsoft spokesperson.
Notch was once a prominent and engaged member of the game development community, and still retains a massive following on Twitter, with around 3.7 million followers.
However, it’s unsurprising that Microsoft would want to have little to with him from a PR standpoint. Since amassing what he himself calls “fuck you money”, Notch has increasingly isolated himself from the community with his comments on Twitter. These range from transphobic tweets and comments about “Heterosexual Pride Day” to “it’s ok to be white”.
Last month there was an update to the game that scrubbed loading screen text that included his name. While no public explanation was given, it can be taken as proof that those now working on Minecraft are trying to put distance between the game and its creator.
A Microsoft official confirmed this week that Notch would not be taking part in the press event at Mojang in Stockholm to celebrate the official anniversary on May 17. The event is set to look at the “past, present and exciting future of the decade-old franchise,” according to the company.