Is EA 'destroying' gaming? Minecraft creator thinks so

The creator of Minecraft, Markus "Notch" Persson, says EA's contention that it's offering an "indie bundle" on Steam is further proof it's "destroying" gaming.

Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
2 min read
Electronic Arts Indie Bundle.
Electronic Arts Indie Bundle. Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

Electronic Arts can't catch a break.

Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson today took aim at the mega-publisher, criticizing it for calling a recent release of games on Steam an "Indie Bundle." Persson argues that Electronic Arts, a major publisher and developer, cannot possibly be a so-called "indie" or independent developer and should not characterize its release as such.

"EA releases an 'indie bundle'?" Persson wrote this morning on his Twitter feed. "That's not how that works, EA. Stop attempting to ruin everything, you bunch of cynical b------s."

EA's recently launched Indie Bundle includes six games, including "Warp," "Shank," "Gatling Gears," and others. The company is offering a 70 percent discount via Steam, allowing customers to pick up the titles for $20.98, rather than their standard $69.94 price.

Like in the music industry, where a handful of labels are major and therefore not "indie," the gaming industry clearly delineates between the two groups. In most cases, developers creating games for mobile platforms or console-based services, like Xbox Live Arcade, are independent developers. Major companies, like EA, Activision Blizzard, and Take-Two, due mainly to their size and influence, are considered "major publishers."

Over the years, camps have developed in the gaming industry, wherein some folks purposely support indie developers. In many cases, those who support indies take issue with major firms and believe they hurt the game industry. Persson appears to be one of those folks, at least as it relates to EA.

"Indies are saving gaming," Persson tweeted this morning. "EA is methodically destroying it."

Persson's comments come just hours after EA was forced to correct an apparently erroneous message sent to Rock Band for iOS users. The original message told users that the game would be discontinued at month's end. In a follow-up, EA said that the app will remain live and that the message was "sent in error."

Still, the incident doesn't help EA make any new friends -- something it's seemingly short on: last month, EA was named the worst company in America, as voted by readers of the Consumerist.

CNET has contacted EA for comment. We will update this story when we have more information.