Five Nights At Freddy's (FNAF) creator Scott Cawthon has announced their retirement from game development after coming under fire for making donations to polarizing U.S. politicians including former president Donald Trump and Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell.
Cawthon launched the original Five Nights at Freddy's in 2014 and has since turned the horror title into a full-fledged franchise with entries on multiple platforms, a series of spinoff games, and multi-media projects including a novel trilogy and an upcoming film adaptation.
Outlining the reason for his retirement in a blog post, Cawthon said he decided to step away from game development to spend more time with his family.
"Here on the seventh anniversary of the first game's trailer, as I realize that I was in my mid-30's when I created the series and now I'm approaching my mid-40's, I realize that I miss a lot of things that I got to focus on before FNAF became such as success. I miss making games for my kids, I miss doing it just for fun, and I miss making RPGs even through I stink at it," he wrote.
"All of this to say that I am retiring. I have been shown tremendous love and support over this last week, a lot of which has been from the LGBTQ community. The kindness shown to me has been surreal. Is the the end of FNAF? No. This just means that someone else will eventually be running the show; someone of my choosing, and someone that I trust. We will have to wait and see how it all plays out, but an announcement will be made at some point."
The blog post also makes a passing reference the controversy surrounding Cawthon's political donations, which saw some fans take issue with his decision to hand cash to high-profile right wing figures like the former U.S. president.
Although some members of the community also showed their support using the 'istandwithscott' hashtag on social media, Cawthon felt the need to defend the donations in a now-locked Reddit thread, explaining he's backed a range of candidates over the years including Democrats.
"I supported Tulsi Gabbard, a democrat, even though I disagreed with her on several issues, because I felt she would have been a good and fair president. And yes, I supported President Trump, because I felt he was the best man to fuel a strong economy and stand up to America's enemies abroad, of which there are many," he wrote in a post titled 'my response, and maybe last post,' which you can read in full here.
"Even if there were candidates who had better things to say to the LGBT community directly, and bigger promises to make, I believed that their stances on other issues would have ended up doing much greater harm to those communities than good.
"I'm a republican. I'm a Christian. I'm pro-life. I believe in God. I also believe in equality, and in science, and in common sense. Despite what some may say, all of those things can go together. That's not an apology or promise to change, it's the way it's always been."