Indie developer Scott Cawthon has been making Five Nights at Freddy’s games ever since 2014 and the success the first game garnered. Seven years and several mountains of FNAF merchandise later, the newest game in the series, Five Nights at Freddy’s: Security Breach, is set to release in 2021 barring any last-minute delays or complications.
Speaking of complications, Security Breach could potentially be the last game in the series (or at the very least, the last one Scott Cawthon has any hand in) as Cawthon recently announced his retirement.
FNAF Creator Scott Cawthon Announces His Retirement
Five Nights at Freddy’s creator Scott Cawthon is retiring seven years after the release of the original Five Nights at Freddy’s game which was released back in 2014. Cawthon announced his retirement in a statement posted to his official website.
The announcement is pretty neutral, addressing only Cawthon’s time with the Five Nights at Freddy’s series, how it’ll live on after his retirement, and how he’ll be spending his retirement with his family.
“I’ve had a blessed, fulfilling, and rich career. I’ve been shown great kindness and I’ve tried to show great kindness in return. I’ve tried to make some good games (let the debate ensue), and I’ve witnessed the creation of possibly the most creative and talented fanbase on the planet.
But 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 a success.
I miss making games for my kids, I miss doing it just for fun, and I miss making rpgs even though I stink at it. 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 come from the LGBTQ community.
The kindness shown to me has been surreal. Is this the end of FNAF? No. This just means that someone else will eventually be running the show; someone of my choosing, and someone I trust. We will have to wait and see how it all plays out, but an announcement will be made at some point.
I have SIX kids now (although one of them is currently the size of a blueberry.) I love them dearly; they are my whole world and my whole universe. I want to focus my attention on them, focus on protecting them, and spend my time making things for them.
I only ask that my fanbase respect my decision. I will still be around, just not in the capacity that I used to be. What a blessed career I’ve had; what wonderful people I’ve met; and what a tremendous blessing to have been able to know all of you. Thank you so much. See you on the flipside.”
While Cawthon doesn’t explicitly talk about the backlash he received in his retirement statement, he did acknowledge it separately in a post made to the FNAF subreddit.
The post came shortly after an OpenSecrets report revealed political donations made by Cawthon to politicians like Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, and Tulsi Gabbard, donations that revealed a side of Cawthon that many of his fans weren’t aware of.
At the end of his Reddit post, Cawthon remarks that he’ll continue to love the fanbase and FNAF community, even if it no longer includes him (which it won't now that he's retiring).
“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.
If I get cancelled, then I get cancelled. I don't do this for the money anymore; I do it because I enjoy it. If people think I'm doing more harm than good now, then maybe it's better that I get cancelled and retire. I would accept that. I've had a fulfilling career.
Besides, most things that people can take from you are things that never had much value to begin with. I have always loved, and will continue to love, this community and this fanbase, even if someday it doesn't include me anymore.”
The reason for the controversy that sparked Cawthon's retirement and Reddit post explanation are ultimately the large donations that Cawthon has made to conservative politicians, including politicians who've supported anti-LGBTQ+ policies.
When Cawthon’s donation history was revealed, it felt like a slap in the face to many (particularly LGBTQ+ people) who’ve supported him and his work on the FNAF series over the last seven years vocally, but also monetarily.
As of right now, Cawthon seems intent for FNAF to continue without him, so it’s possible fans may be able to enjoy the creation separate from its creator in the future. However, there’s also the issue of Cawthon continuing to profit off FNAF whether it be merchandise sales, game sales, and so on for fans to consider.
Ultimately it’ll be up to fans to decide what they feel comfortable doing when the time comes, whether that’s playing Five Nights at Freddy's: Security Breach once it's released for the sake of the story and its characters, or skipping Security Breach and all other future FNAF releases entirely.
Once Cawthon passes the FNAF keys over to someone else whether that be a person or company, we’ll be sure to share that update with you along with updates on Five Nights at Freddy’s: Security Breach.