This is something I've always wondered. What if Creepers were added later? Throughout my five years on this forum, I've seen MANY mob suggestion threads... and I mean... MANY... MANY suggestion threads get bashed because they suggested a mob that was "too OP". Heck even many of MY mob suggestions back in the day were bashed for being too overpowered. I remember one suggestion I had in particular back in 2013 where I suggested a mob that could exist in the END, that acts like a landmine and explodes if you step on it. The explosion was that of TNT - slightly stronger than a creeper. This suggestion was almost universally panned, saying it was too OP and was "basically a creeper".
I remember this really baffling me at the time, since this was a mob that you'd encounter at the END, yet the Creeper is a mob you encounter on the FIRST NIGHT. On the first night, you probably have no armour and a stone sword. Likewise with the first time you go underground (after all, you need to to get iron). The Creeper, in these circumstances, even on Normal difficulty, can kill you in one hit. When you're in the End, you're likely to have full Diamond equipment, thus absorbing the landmine mob's blow considerably.
My point is, the Creeper is incredibly overpowered, given its status as a mob you'll encounter within the first 15 minutes of gameplay. Yet it is, to this day, the most iconic mob of the game. Because it's been in the game since basically the very beginning, and it was "inventive", and by now we're so used to them being in the game. But I believe, say the Creeper WASN'T added back in 2009, but rather appeared as a suggestion thread on this forum, right here in 2017. Someone suggested this mob called the "Creeper" that spawns at night or in darkness, sneaks up on you without a sound, then explodes on you, dealing enough damage to kill you two-and-a-half times over on Normal mode, and five times over on Hard. My guess is that it wouldn't fly so well. In fact, this suggestion thread would probably be so panned the original poster would request to have the thread locked.
Or even better, what if a developer were announcing "1.12.2, now with Creepers!" What would people think of the new Creeper mob? Some might like the fact there's now an instant-death challenge on the very first night, but I can see a LOT of people crying out to "NERF IT PLZ". Seeing as how people get mad over a few texture changes, I can't even imagine how people would react to a "new" mob that's more dangerous than most END-GAME mobs appearing on the first night.
What are your thoughts? Do you think the Creeper would be poorly received if added in 2017 rather than 2009? I am intrigued to hear some thoughts, as I've always wondered about this, ever since that landmine mob suggestion was so heavily panned, and seeing many other similar suggestions get the same treatment.
EDIT: And yes, I know that Witches and Endermen are also incredibly powerful and encountered on the first night, but they have a MUCH lower spawnrate than Creepers.