YouTube personality John “Totalbiscuit” Bain is retiring as a game critic, he said today, citing his failing health and telling fans that he believes he will die soon.
“When I went into hospital a week or so ago, it was accompanied by the news that conventional chemotherapy’s effectiveness had been exhausted,” Bain wrote in a lengthy Reddit post on r/Cynicalbritofficial, the subreddit devoted to him and his fans. He added that doctors told him his liver was failing, and that he is “currently coming to terms with the fact that I don’t have long left.”
“That will most likely be my last health update, unless some miracle happens or we do indeed find a trial that can do something despite the damage to my liver,” Bain wrote. “I’d ask people not to speculate about how long I might have left. I’ve deliberately left out some details to try and reduce the behavior, though it might very well have the opposite effect. All I do know is that kind of thing is upsetting to some of my viewers that read it and I’d rather not encourage it. I’ve already exceeded the ‘usual’ lifespan of someone with my condition so whatever numbers people come up with are just that.”
Bain said he would continue making YouTube videos and Twitch streams, transitioning from criticism to co-op gameplay with his wife, Genna Bain, adding that he hopes she takes over his video presence when he dies.
“I fully expect The Co-optional Podcast to go on and I love the thought that once I’m gone, the channels will go on in my absence, hosted by the person who knows me best and has been with me for the better part of my adult life,” he said.
Bain, who is 33, built a career on YouTube by playing, critiquing, and announcing over games like World of Warcraft and StarCraft. He has developed a reputation for outspoken, critical stances on a number of game-industry-related issues, oftentimes courting controversy in the process. In late 2015, he started a Steam group called The Framerate Police with the goal of informing PC gamers when games could not run at higher than 30 frames-per-second. When members of the group flooded the Steam page of a game whose developers chose to hide The Framerate Police’s listing, Bain had to warn his fans against harassment.
In 2014, Bain announced that he had been diagnosed with bowel cancer. Although the cancer later entered remission, it re-emerged last year and has spread to his liver and spine. “It’s been a privilege,” wrote Bain, “thank you all for letting me into your life and do something so important as to have an impact on how you spend your hard-earned money.”