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The melancholy billionaire: Minecraft creator unhappy with his sudden wealth

What is Minecraft?
What is Minecraft?

You might think the developer of Minecraft, who sold his video game to Microsoft for $2.5 billion, would be living the dream.

But according to a series of tweets over the weekend, Marcus “Notch” Persson is pretty unhappy with his life and his huge wealth.

Persson sold his wildly popular game a year ago. Since then he bought a 23,000-square-foot mansion in Beverly Hills for $70 million, reportedly outbidding Beyonce and Jay Z. But even those ultra-luxury digs aren’t enough to make him happy.

“The problem with getting everything is you run out of reasons to keep trying, and human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance,” he wrote at the start of series of tweets.

His depression apparently struck a cord with the twitterverse. Nearly 1,400 people retweeted that first tweet, and 2,200 favorited it.

The problem with getting everything is you run out of reasons to keep trying, and human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

But Persson wasn’t done there. He followed with tweets about never feeling more isolated.

Hanging out in ibiza with a bunch of friends and partying with famous people, able to do whatever I want, and I’ve never felt more isolated.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

Part of the isolation apparently comes from having nothing to do, just sitting around waiting for friends and family.

In sweden, I will sit around and wait for my friends with jobs and families to have time to do shit, watching my reflection in the monitor.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

Persson feels unappreciated by the workers at his former company, who he said he made sure were taken care of in the sale to Microsoft(MSFT, Tech30).

When we sold the company, the biggest effort went into making sure the employees got taken care of, and they all hate me now.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

And apparently part of his loneliness comes from not being able to date the woman he would like to, because of his wealth. She apparently wanted to date a “normal person.”

Found a great girl, but she’s afraid of me and my life style and went with a normal person instead.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

Some people suggested he follow the example of Elon Musk, who took the fortune he made from selling his stake in PayPal(PYPL, Tech30) to eBay(EBAY) and used it to start businesses he was passionate about. Musk, of course, launched Tesla Motors(TSLA), which is trying to combat global warming by developing an affordable electric car, and SpaceX, which is trying to create an affordable rocket to take people to Mars. But Persson rejected the idea of such visionary efforts.

The tweets brought encouragement from some others who had enjoyed sudden success, although maybe not actual billions. It also brought offers from people who said they’d be willing to hang out with Persson and be his friend. He said he appreciated all the offers and reassurances.

People who made sudden success are telling me this is normal and will pass. That’s good to know! I guess I’ll take a shower then!

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

And just venting and not feeling like I had to hide made it feel a bit easier to cope with already. ❤

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 29, 2015

And when one person tweeted him about his regretting the sale to Microsoft, he responded early Monday that “selling out was the best thing I ever did.”

@plankzt You’re completely wrong. Selling out was the best thing I ever did.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 31, 2015

He seemed to be taking a more positive view of things in his tweets Monday morning, saying he was having a nice day. And he mocked news reports about the tone of his melancholy tweets over the weekend.

fwiw, while there are articles about my depression because I had a bad day and vented on a trend I saw, I’m sitting here having a nice day.

— Markus Persson (@notch) August 31, 2015

CNNMoney (New York) August 31, 2015: 9:17 AM ET

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