Minecraft creator Markus 'Notch' Persson wanted to create a Valve, not work at Valve

By on December 10, 2013, 4:15 PM
valve, minecraft, notch, gabe newell, markus persson

It’s sometimes interesting to take a look back and realize how a single decision could have had a drastic impact on something today. Such is the case with Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson who was offered a job with Valve a few years back. Obviously, he declined the invitation but things could have been vastly different had he accepted.

The fact that Notch turned down a job at Valve isn’t news per se but thanks to an English publishing of the book Minecraft: The Unlikely Tale of Markus ‘Notch' Persson and the Game that Changed Everything, we now have some more details of exactly how everything played out.

As the story goes, Notch was invited to Valve around the time that the beta version of Minecraft was starting to grow in terms of popularity. He was shown around Valve’s offices and met with Gabe Newell before he was taken to a meeting room for a chat with the studio’s HR team.

After telling the team a bit about himself and his plans for Minecraft, he ultimately realized he was in the middle of a job interview. Sure enough, the official invitation was put on the table moments later. According to the book, Persson politely but firmly said he wasn’t interested in the position.

Notch said it was one of the toughest decisions of his life although he somehow felt that Minecraft was his chance to create his own version of Valve rather than work at Valve. The rest, as they say, is history as more than 33 million copies of Minecraft have been sold to date.




User Comments: 4

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t3chn0vamp said:

Inspiring story.

fteumer said:

Inspiring story.

hardly, he could've had his cake and eaten it too.

I doubt he'll ever have a big project come out that isn't some addendum to minecraft.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

hardly, he could've had his cake and eaten it too.
I've heard stories, that Indie projects need more time than full-time jobs allow. I'm sure he realized this or he would have taken the job. And if he had taken the job, I could plainly see Valve trying to take credit for anything he might have done.

WithoutAnyMilk WithoutAnyMilk said:

hardly, he could've had his cake and eaten it too.
I've heard stories, that Indie projects need more time than full-time jobs allow. I'm sure he realized this or he would have taken the job. And if he had taken the job, I could plainly see Valve trying to take credit for anything he might have done.

Indeed. I have nothing but respect for people who are willing to take risks to follow their dreams, especially now that Notch has a huge head-start on whatever those dreams may be. I say best of luck to him for not compromising himself or his creative liberty in exchange for a guaranteed salary.

Job security and fiat paper promissory notes do not make a man, anyway - they're just debt. Knowing that he has done precisely what he set out to do while enriching the lives of others; now that makes a man.

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