A popular American gamer, known to his 11 million YouTube followers as “Technoblade,” has died of cancer at age 23, his family said on Thursday night.
In a video titled “so long nerds,” his father is seen sitting on a chair, playing with a family dog as he tells fans of his son’s death.
He goes on to read out a message his son had prepared before he died.
“Hello, everyone, Technoblade here. If you’re watching this, I am dead. So let’s sit down and have one final chat,” his father says.
“My real name is Alex,” the message continues, revealing only his first name after many years of anonymity and an inside joke where users thought he may have been named Dave. His videos, which had millions of views, didn’t show his face. Instead, he used an avatar — a pig wearing a crown — and his voice was well known to many as he battled, built and joked with others playing the popular game “Minecraft.”
The video included photos of Alex with friends, and in a hospital gown, finally giving Technoblade’s fans a chance to catch a glimpse of his face.
In the posthumous message, he thanked fans for buying his merchandise and subscriptions, joking: “My siblings are going to college, well, if they want to — I don’t wanna put any dead brother peer pressure on them.”
“That’s all from me. Thank you all for supporting my content over the years. If I had another 100 lives, I think I would choose to be Technoblade again every single time, as those were the happiest years of my life.”
“I love you guys,” the message added. “Technoblade out.”
His father told viewers that Alex had wanted to record a longer message, but “we waited too long” and he ran out of time. He adds that his son had a hard time focusing as his health deteriorated.
Alex mustered the strength to write the farewell message on a laptop on his death bed, about eight hours before he passed away, his father recalls, tearfully.
“He was the most amazing kid anyone could ever ask for,” he said. “You meant a lot to him.”
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The video, watched more than 18 million times by early Friday, prompted an outpouring of grief from his followers and fellow gamers online. Some recorded videos of their reaction to the news; others posted messages to social media.
“You’ll always be a legend,” tweeted YouTuber and Twitch streamer Jschlatt.
“I had the opportunity to express to Technoblade how much admiration and respect I had for him, not only for the massive impact he had on all of us, but also for keeping his incredible humor even in the darkest moments. I will miss him so much. Rest In Peace,” tweeted the YouTube gamer known as Quackity.
Words cannot describe how we, the entire Hypixel Team, are feeling today. Technoblade will always be remembered as one of our best, right from the start. Simon has released a statement from himself and the Hypixel Team, you can find it here > https://t.co/5HYjKsCYs4 pic.twitter.com/y04OFQ6q2E
Technoblade has passed away after his battle with cancer, his father delivered a final message on his behalf today.
May he rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/z2dL5xzjvB
Technoblade told his subscribers in August he had been diagnosed with cancer, after reporting some arm ache, in a video called “where I’ve been.” He never specified the type of cancer, but had raised money with the Sarcoma Foundation of America, which supports those with a rare cancer that can arise in tissue structures, usually in limbs.
In a statement posted at the end of the farewell YouTube video and widely shared on social media, signed by “Techno’s mom,” she praises her son’s “good-natured humility,” “self-deprecating wit” and “sportsmanship” when playing “Minecraft.”
The video game sees players create and break apart various kinds of blocks in three-dimensional worlds, as they explore, build, survive and sometimes fend off mobs of moving creatures.
She thanked all those around the world who supported her son and said he had “adored and respected his fans and colleagues.” She added that he “didn’t complain” about his battle with stage four cancer; instead he “kept using his famous strategic mind to try to beat what he knew were almost impossible odds.”
“My son’s bravery on this path was a shining lesson to all of us who were privileged to walk it with him,” she added.