I bought Minecraft on September 1st. It was excellent – a fresh, new gaming experience. You’ll have probably read about it already, so I won’t labour the point.
The Halloween update was announced and my excitement grew. What was lacking from the multiplayer game was that piquancy of danger available in the single player in the form of zombies, skeletons and giant spiders that appeared at night and in the dark mines you had to dig – the Halloween update would set about including them in the multiplayer game. “Hurray!”, I thought. “This is fast becoming the game I’ve always wanted to play.”
I was busy around Halloween so only got a chance to boot-up Minecraft a few days after the update but my password didn’t work with my username. I tried all the combinations of passwords and usernames I most often use. None worked. Curious.
I told the password recovery to send a reminder using my account’s username. But it wasn’t recognised. I tracked down my Paypal receipt to Mojang – the Minecraft people – to my Hotmail account and told the password recovery to send a reminder to this address, which would definitely be the one I used to register. But it wasn’t recognised.
My account had disappeared.
I searched Minecraft’s website and found a link to the email address firstname.lastname@example.org. “If you’re still having trouble accessing your account, please dont hesitate to send me an email” It said. I didn’t hesitate, and I sent an email and waited. Four days past and no response appeared. I checked the email address registered with my Paypal payment, it was the same: email@example.com. I searced the Minecraft website for another email address, came across firstname.lastname@example.org (otherwise known as Notch, the game’s creator), and fired an email there. And waited. No response.
Perhaps they have a spam filter for Hotmail, I thought. A lot of places do. For that reason, and for the meagre weight my Gaming Daily email account might perhaps possess, I used that instead to resend two emails to new addresses I’d tracked down: email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime I had been complaining about my dilemma to Craig who tweeted Notch, receiving no reply. I emailed another, desperate, subject-line-in-capitals email to email@example.com. No Response. I’d run out of email addresses at which to send my requests for a fix.
I tweeted Notch myself. Again, no reply, but someone did pick up on it and posted my question at GetSatisfaction.com which serves in part as Minecraft’s online community.
They couldn’t help.
I still can’t play Minecraft. I paid €9.95 for a premium Minecraft account – I haven’t been able to play it for about a month now.
As a last resort, an attempt to get attention more than anything, I billed Mojang for €9.95 from my Paypal account, too much time having passed to reverse the charge:
“For unusable Minecraft account. Will accept a refund or rectification of unusable account as detailed in previous emails.”
Can you guess what happened? Nothing happened.
Last week, Notch tweeted that any Minecraft account problems should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, the address I’d emailed at least twice before. I’ve emailed it again. No reply just yet, but fingers crossed! He also said “I get a LOT of emails. You might have luck bugging Daniel, too..” I asked Daniel, my housemate from three years ago, but he didn’t know anything about it. I don’t know who Daniel is – I can’t find his contact details.
Today, while writing this, Notch tweeted:
“I intended to work on my 4k game today after work, but added pointless candy stuff to Minecraft instead! So much fun!”
So that’s my situation. Sure they’re an indie that have achieved massive, massive success and thus you’d expect a bit of a delay with after-sales support. But to have received nothing from Mojang after sending numerous emails over the course of a month during which I cannot play the game I paid for at all? It’s a bit much.
UPDATE: At 12.32pm today (8/12/10) Notch emailed me to say that he was made aware of the problem. Everything’s now sorted and I can play Minecraft again. Hurrah!