Minecraft creator Markus 'Notch' Persson said today that he is shelving plans to work on an Oculus Rift version of his hit game, following the VR company's $2 billion acquisition by Facebook.
Writing on his blog, just a few hours after the Facebook announcement, Notch stated that while he had been excited about Rift and had backed the project at a high level on Kickstarter, he is disappointed by Facebook's involvement.
"I definitely want to be a part of VR, but I will not work with Facebook," he wrote. "Their motives are too unclear and shifting, and they haven't historically been a stable platform. There's nothing about their history that makes me trust them, and that makes them seem creepy to me. And I did not chip in ten grand to seed a first investment round to build value for a Facebook acquisition."
Notch wrote that he visited Oculus' offices recently, and was impressed with the operation. He spoke with John Carmack about the challenges of VR technology and design.
"Of course, they wanted Minecraft," he added. "I said that it doesn't really fit the platform, since it's very motion based, runs on Java (that has a hard time delivering rock solid 90 fps, especially since the players build their own potentially hugely complex levels), and relies a lot on [Graphical User Interface]. But perhaps it would be cool to do a slimmed down version of Minecraft for the Oculus. Something free, similar to the Minecraft PI Edition, perhaps? So I suggested that, and our people started talking to their people to see if something could be done. And then, not two weeks later, Facebook buys them."
He offered praise and congratulations to the Oculus team, who he described as a "dedicated and talented group of people," but added that "this is where we part ways."
"Facebook is not a company of grass-roots tech enthusiasts," he wrote. "Facebook is not a game tech company. Facebook has a history of caring about building user numbers, and nothing but building user numbers. People have made games for Facebook platforms before, and while it worked great for a while, they were stuck in a very unfortunate position when Facebook eventually changed the platform to better fit the social experience they were trying to build."
Notch said that he would continue to work on other VR projects, and added that "competition is a very good thing." He linked to an Oculus app called Minecrift.
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