|— Notch on January 6, 2020|
Markus Alexej Persson
|Date of birth||
June 1, 1979 (age 43)
Creating Minecraft, founder of Mojang Studios
|Also known as||
Persson started programming at the age of seven, using his father's Commodore 128. He produced his first game (a text-adventure) at the age of eight, with the help of type-in programs. In 2005 he started working as a game developer for King.com, which he left in 2009 to work as a programmer at Jalbum. He is also one of the founders of Wurm Online. After Minecraft sales grew he moved from full-time to part-time at Jalbum and then eventually left to focus full-time on Minecraft in June 2010; many of the original Mojang employees (including former CEO Carl Manneh) were also ex-Jalbum employees. After the full release of Minecraft (1.0.0), Persson transferred creative authority of the game's development to Jens Bergensten.
Persson sold Mojang and all of its assets to Microsoft on September 15, 2014. In a lengthy blog post, Notch states "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 then goes on to say that "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."
Persson left Mojang on November 5, 2014, along with the other founders. He wrote that "as soon as this deal is finalized, I will leave Mojang and go back to doing Ludum Dares and small web experiments. If I ever accidentally make something that seems to gain traction, I'll probably abandon it immediately."
Persson has not been involved with Minecraft since selling Mojang to Microsoft, and the company has since disassociated with him, with a spokesperson for Microsoft stating that "[Persson's] comments and opinions do not reflect those of Microsoft or Mojang and are not representative of 'Minecraft'."
Outside of work Persson frequently takes part in competitions, including Ludum Dare, LD12 and the Java 4k Game Programming Contest.
Persson engaged Ez during a vacation in Indonesia, and married her on August 13, 2011. The two separated on August 15, 2012. Her brother, Kristoffer, is the artist whose paintings appear in the game.
Games and other work
Notch has released much of his work, including, but not limited to:
- Droj, a multiplayer game.
- DachonB, a gravity based shooter.
- Wurm Online, an MMO featuring sandbox elements similar to Minecraft.
- Logichex, a hexagonal logic gate builder.
- Infinite Mario Bros, a Super Mario clone featuring an endlessly-long level.
- Tanks, a strategy game with tanks.
- Blast Passage, an 8-Bit mashup between Bomberman and Gauntlet.
- TowerFail, a failed attempt at a ludum dare game.
- TinyCham, a dungeon crawler with a 40x30 pixel resolution.
- Eye of the Onlooker II - The Legend of Tinymoon, a sequel to TinyCham.
- Minecraft, a block game.
- Herp Fortress, a Team Fortress 2 demake.
- Drop, a typing game that increases in speed as you play.
- Shambles, a hectic shooter greatly inspired by Doom.
- Cliffhorse, an open-ended game in which you play as a horse that can scale cliffs.
Java 4k Games:
- Sonic Racer 4k, a racing game with stolen sprites.
- Dungeon4k, a dungeon exploration game.
- Hunters4k, a first person shooter.
- Miners4k, a game kind of inspired by Lemmings and Diggers.
- Dachon4k, a 4k remake of DachonB.
- l4krits, a Luxor clone.
- t4kns, a real time strategy game.
- Left 4k Dead, a zombie shooter game inspired by Left 4 Dead.
- MEG4kMAN, a Mega Man clone featuring old-school graphics.
- Minecraft 4k, Minecraft in less than 4 KB for a Java 4k competition.
- VVVV, a VVVVVV demake.
Ludum Dare Games:
- Breaking the Tower, a slow-paced strategy game.
- Bunny Press, a violent puzzle game made for Ludum Dare 14.
- The Europa Arcology Incident, an RPG-style game Notch made in 48 hours for Ludum Dare 16.
- Metagun, a puzzle game Notch made in 48 hours for Ludum Dare 18.
- Prelude of the Chambered, an escape game Notch made in 48 hours for Ludum Dare 21.
- Minicraft, a top-down Zelda-esque game with elements from Minecraft, made for Ludum Dare 22.
- Last Minute Christmas Chopping, in which you play as Santa collecting wood to build a sleigh.
- Drowning in Problems, a clicker game that gets progressively more complicated.
- Flashmaze, a first person shooter prototype in flash.
- Flash doom level renderer.
- Dungeon master type game engine in Java.
- Legend of the Chambered, a dungeon crawler containing many textures that were reused in Minecraft.
- Legend of the Chambered 2, an updated version of Legend of the Chambered.
Notch also has a soundcloud page which includes 53 tracks in total. He would sometimes use his music on his old YouTube channel Nizzotch.
- 3D1, a free-roaming engine based on Wolfenstein.
- Ruby, a free-scrolling engine inspired by JRPGs.
- ISOM, an isometric renderer test which included a random terrain generator.
- Turbo, an "over-the top side scrolling shooter".
- IQ Ball 2, a sequel to IQ Ball, where the object of the game is to get a ball safely to the goal, and in which all balls are moved when a directional key is pressed.
- HEDE, a platformer that involved shooting slimes with a gun.
- HEDE 2, the sequel to HEDE, albeit top-down instead of a platformer.
- Rubylands x, a tile based roguelike.
- RUBYLAND, a "first person tile based dungeon crawler".
- Howl, "a Megaman-type game".
- STRAT, inspired by Dune 2.
- Rubylands, a fantasy group manager.
- RubyDung, a Dwarf Fortress-inspired game containing textures that were reused in Minecraft.
- Zombie Town, a GTA: Chinatown Wars-inspired game containing models that were reused in Minecraft.
- Legend of the Chambered - Book 1, an unfinished TinyGame2010 submission.
- The Tiny Vikings, another unfinished TinyGame2010 submission.
- Super Me4k Boy, a super meat boy demake.
- Brickcraft, a sandbox game developed in collaboration with the LEGO group.
- Santa vs Cthulhu, a real time strategy game where you play as either Santa or Cthulhu.
- Minitale, a sequel to Minicraft.
- 0x10c, a space sandbox game featuring programmable spacecraft.
Notch with his fans at MinecraftCon 2010.
Notch at the 2016 Game Developers Conference.
Notch icon on Adweek's The Top 10 Technologists.
- On June 1, 2011, Notch posted on Twitter that he was 25 years old. 25 is 32, which was his age at the time.
- Notch programmed the Minecraft splash screen to display "Happy Birthday, Notch!" all day on June 1. This was removed in Java Edition 1.8.5.
- "Imagine countless wiki editors all using each others work as basis for their own, reasoning what must be true from what they already assume is. Wouldn't that make for a weird reality?" – @notch (Markus Persson) on Twitter, January 6, 2020
- "Turning 30 is scary." (archived) – The Word of Notch, May 27, 2009.
- "Interview: Markus 'Notch' Persson Talks Making Minecraft" by Alex Handy – Gamasutra, 23 March 2010.
- "Minecraft Mastermind Markus Persson To Receive Bafta Special Award" by Kristoff Clark – Gamasutra, 5 March 2012.
- "Notch steps down as lead developer on Minecraft to focus on 'new project'" by Christopher Grant – Joystiq, 2 December 2011.
- I'm leaving Mojang - Notch.net; September 15, 2014
- "‘Minecraft’ Creator Excluded From Anniversary Due to ‘Comments and Opinions’ (EXCLUSIVE)" by Brian Crecente – Variety, April 19, 2019.
- "We actually got engaged in your country :D Indonesia is very beautiful!" - ez on Twitter; June 7, 2011
- "Illness!" (archived) – The Word of Notch, September 30, 2009.
- "As of today, I am single. #mixedemotions" – @notch (Markus Persson) on Twitter, August 15, 2012
- "It's my birthday, and I'm turning 2^5 today! ez got me saké (for later) and breakfast (for now). :D <3" – @notch (Markus Persson) on Twitter, June 1, 2011