Sometimes, Twitter is the electric blue conduit that joins the dots between human beings and makes things happen – campaigns, revolutions and running jokes. But on other occasions, it’s a hub of hubbub, misinformation and exciting propositions that end in disappointment.
See, when Notch told Double Fine’s Tim Schafer via Twitter that the pair should “make Psychonauts 2 happen”, he really meant it. But that was before he’d seen the price tag.
“I somewhat naively thought ‘a couple of million’ was two million,” explained Markus ‘Notch’ Persson on Reddit. “I had no doubt in my mind that a Psychonauts 2 would earn that money back easily.
“Turns out they wanted 18 million dollars, haha.”
Persson chief concern was his own lack of experience in big-money publishing.
“Perhaps in some distant future when I’m no longer trying to make games, I could get into angel investing,” he said. “I’ve made one private investment into a game so far, at $100K, and it’s frankly a lot more work than I thought.”
Double Fine said in a statement that Schafer and co. are “excited about the prospect of making a sequel to Psychonauts, but we’re currently focused on making our Kickstarter game and haven’t been able to budget it out”.
Once the company get around to it, they’ll likely explore “alternative funding methods” and combine a number of sources to make up that $18m budget, or whatever it eventually turns out to be. Note that Double Fine are talking whens, not ifs, though – perhaps Notch will wind up as one of those multiple sources after all.
Minecraft earned Notch $101m in 2012 – an experience he’s since described as “weird as fuck”.
“I grew up in a relatively poor family, but once I got a decent job, I never really had to worry about money,” he said on Reddit. “My hobbies were playing games and programming, so there wasn’t any real drain. I could eat out when I wanted to, and go to the movies without having to save up for it. I still had to save up for trips and to be able to buy computers or consoles, but that just felt normal.
“Now, all of the sudden, as a result of how modern society works, I managed to somehow earn a shit-ton of money. I still like playing games and programming, and once I had the latest computer and consoles, there really isn’t much more to spend the money on than traveling. I might eventually get a driver’s license so I can buy a car.
“I think the right way to use money like this is to set a decent portion aside to make sure my family is comfortable, spend some on living out your dreams, and then try to put the rest towards making society a better place. For me, this includes charities that help children, and charities that help promote freedoms I think are vital in the coming dozens of years, such as the EFF.”