Pixelmon, a robust Pokemon-themed modification for Minecraft released in 2012, can no longer be downloaded. The developers say the take down is the result of a request by The Pokemon Company itself.
"With much sadness, but keeping all our fond memories, we must announce that Pixelmon is ending its development," MrMasochism, creator of the mod, wrote in a blog post. "We have had a great time making this mod and creating such a wonderful community but after a request from the Pokemon company we will be shutting our doors."
Pixelmon, as many of you know, allowed players to basically enjoy a blocky version of Pokemon in Minecraft. You could capture, train and evolve Pokemon; craft items such as Pokeballs; and battle against other trainers. The mod was so detail-oriented that you could collect fossils and breed creatures, not to mention had its own voice acting. Pixelmon was big enough that there are multiple series and videos with millions of views each, making it likely that this was one of the most popular Minecraft fan creations out there. Pixelmon creators tell us that each version could get anywhere from "50-450 thousand downloads in the time that said version is relevant". The mod came out of beta in early July, and the latest news update noted that the mod was finished refining generation 4 of the compendium.
"It's been a long time wonder when this would eventually happen, and of course, we always expected something to happen eventually," Isi, an administrator of Pixelmon, told Kotaku in an email. "Especially now, with mind of an Pokemon game in-dev for the Switch. It's a shame that it's come to an end, especially with the amazing community of players, users running servers, Youtubers, streamers, and of course our own creation team."
Isi claimed that, following this turn of events, most of the development team will be "bowing out" from Minecraft entirely. We reached out to The Pokemon Company, but had not heard back at time of writing.
"I'm sorry for the disappointment this will cause but let's remember all the great times we had playing Pixelmon, discussing Pokemon, making awesome things inside this mod and everything else that we've done," MrMasochism wrote. "All good things come to an end eventually and now is our time."
While Pixelmon's shutdown may not be surprising, it was around long enough for a community to form around it. In the comments of the announcement, many fans are sharing their fond memories or expressing disappointment: