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Oculus cofounder Palmer Luckey is back. And it's weird

The wunderkind virtual reality inventor had largely been silent since his politicking was exposed last year and he slunk out of Facebook.

Palmer Luckey, back when he worked for Facebook.
James Martin/CNET

What do you do when you're young, rich, love internet irony and have a lot of time to kill?

You could follow the example of Palmer Luckey, the 24 year-old cofounder of Oculus VR, who emerged Wednesday from an apparent social media exile after his political activities raised eyebrows last year.

Luckey changed his Twitter avatar to Obi-Wan Kenobi -- perhaps in reference to the Star Wars character's last words, "If you strike me down I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine."

And his first new tweet mentioned a Japanese novel.

Luckey's re-emergence comes after he seemed to be sidelined at Facebook, which bought Oculus, the start-up that re-ignited people's interest in virtual reality, for more than $2 billion in 2014 and landed Lukey on the cover of Time magazine. Back then, Luckey appeared destined to become one of those young tech luminaries promoting his company's efforts in public. Y'know, kinda like Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak.

Instead, Luckey funded weird political activity on the social networking site Reddit, including an apparent billboard outside Pittsburgh with a cartoonish likeness of then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the words "Too Big to Jail."

He'd largely gone quiet since the story came out late last year. That is, until earlier this week, when Mother Jones reported Luckey's political activity hadn't ended with the election. The magazine reported Luckey donated $100,000 to President Donald Trump's inaugural committee, apparently through entities owned/run by Luckey. The names of the companies appear related to the popular video game Chrono Trigger, which came out more than two decades ago.

Luckey declined to comment.

Instead, Luckey has used his Twitter account to complain about the stories written about him. He also made some typically Twitter-like jokes.

And that's pretty vocal for a guy who didn't even tweet when he left Facebook.