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Activision explains Infinity Ward reshuffle

Activision explains Infinity Ward reshuffle

Activision is planning new COD games from new studios, while Infinity Ward heads have left the company.

Activision has outlined the future of the Call of Duty series in a statement today that goes part way towards explaining yesterday's news that Infinity Ward bosses Vince Zampella and Jason West had left the publisher - possibly forcibly.

The two Infinity Ward heads were rumoured to be upset with Activision's policy and the fact that none of the royalties for Modern Warfare 2 - which grossed more than $1 billion USD - have been paid. It's since been confirmed that security entered the Infinity Ward building and that both Jason West and Vince Zampella have left Infinity Ward after more than nine years with the team.

Activision's statement plays down these facts though and focuses on the announcement of new Call of Duty and Modern Warfare games, some of which have been handed to new developer Sledgehammer Games, formed by ex-EA executives.

Activision's statement confirms that there'll be a new Call of Duty game from Treyarch this Autumn, with the popular rumour being that the game will be based in the Vietnam War.

Sledgehammer Games' new title will be released in 2011 and will move the genre forward to a more "action adventure" setting. Sledgehammer is owned wholly by Activision.

Activision is also setting up a new department just to handle and further the COD franchise, which will focus on "various new brand initiatives with focused, dedicated resources around the world", as well as "high-margin digital online content" and new genres.

Infinity Ward's remnants are currently only working on the first of two map packs to be released later in the year for Modern Warfare 2.

Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

40 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
neillyb 3rd March 2010, 12:24 Quote
Activision are going to run this **** into the ground, just like Guitar Hero. They can stick their "high margin digital online content" where the sun don't shine.
Centy-face 3rd March 2010, 12:30 Quote
Well after MW2 being frankly crap on PC I couldn't care less IW has forgotten how they got started. Unless the next Call of Duty from Treyarch is super goodo and it likely won't be I probably won't ever care about the franchise again let the console gamers have it.
mi1ez 3rd March 2010, 12:34 Quote
Activision can **** off!

I think I'd complain about not receiving my royalties too, and that should be no grounds for dismissal! Hope Jason West and Vince Zampella can sue.
[USRF]Obiwan 3rd March 2010, 12:53 Quote
I would be pissed also when 1b of royalties is hold back. Probably why they forcefully have been retired just to get the royalties from Activision. Like "Activision: If you do not leave, we will not pay you and your IW employees!"

Looks like a Activision scam to me.
mjm25 3rd March 2010, 13:01 Quote
Ugh, there's some shuddersome corporate language being thrown about there. "high margin" always means "good fun" after all :(
wuyanxu 3rd March 2010, 13:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centy-face
Well after MW2 being frankly crap on PC I couldn't care less IW has forgotten how they got started. Unless the next Call of Duty from Treyarch is super goodo and it likely won't be I probably won't ever care about the franchise again let the console gamers have it.

Treyarch games won't be good on PC. look at how crappy World at War feels, all they do is to limit the FOV of a previous CoD game, re-skin it and instant profit.

feels like the CnC/Westwood all over again.
impar 3rd March 2010, 13:04 Quote
Greetings!

Guess IW was not balanced for Activision...
samkiller42 3rd March 2010, 13:12 Quote
So, Activision are milking the franchise for everything it has, hum, nothing new then.

Sam
shanky887614 3rd March 2010, 13:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuyanxu
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centy-face
Well after MW2 being frankly crap on PC I couldn't care less IW has forgotten how they got started. Unless the next Call of Duty from Treyarch is super goodo and it likely won't be I probably won't ever care about the franchise again let the console gamers have it.

Treyarch games won't be good on PC. look at how crappy World at War feels, all they do is to limit the FOV of a previous CoD game, re-skin it and instant profit.

feels like the CnC/Westwood all over again.

i aggree there world at war was rubish i remmeber call of duty 1 and 2 they were a lot better than the ones out now (with the exception of modern warefare 1)
tonyd223 3rd March 2010, 13:20 Quote
IF the funds haven't been paid, and IF the two exec's have complained loudly, and/or taken legal advice / legal action, THEN they would expect to be escorted out of the building, or put on gardening leave... There's more to this, and what ever it is, Activision are not looking good at all.

Bet they've put a gag on all the remaining IW staff
Redsnake77 3rd March 2010, 13:28 Quote
I'm not a fan of the MW COD series, I've played COD4and enjoyed it. But I refuse to support companies like Tunnel, sorry Activision, and people like Bobby Goatcheese, sorry again, Kotick. It these kind of business practices, people with attitudes like Bob's that make me reluctant to buy their product (I bought COD4 second hand). I've worked for businesses, and people like these, and they're not fun places to be. Profit, Profit, Profit, backstabbing, and bullying. Seriously the games industry used be about passion, and fun. But as the industry has grown, and become more profitable, business people have taken control, and now rule the roost, with the artisans being trated like nothing more than assets to be utilised. No wonder there are so few games anymore that are truly ground breaking, engrossing, entertaining, or enthralling. Look at the trend of shorter single player campaigns, with more and more invested in the multi player. This is because it's cheaper to do multi player well because you need less story telling, which requires passion and intelligence. Multi player will eventually open up more revenue streams too, with subscriptions, special load outs, etc. People seem to be getting rather narked to have to constantly pay for DLC to flesh out short single player campaigns too. Unfortunatley there's not much we can do. I will not be buying any Tunnelvision games, but as with what happened with MW2, lots of people said "They wouldn't buy the game without dedicated servers it was the principal of the thing!" What happened? It became the biggest selling game in history. Principals, what principals? Support these businesses and they'll keep on acting like gamers are just an ATM, rather than savvy, educated and enlightened consumers, who demand certain standards not only from the products they purchase, but from the producers of that product. OK deep breath, rant over.
cgthomas 3rd March 2010, 13:39 Quote
while Activision is working on that "high-margin digital online content" that I won't be getting (because I don't have MW2), I'll be happily playing BFBC2 - pwning in my heli
Passarinhuu 3rd March 2010, 13:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redsnake77
I'm not a fan of the MW COD series, I've played COD4and enjoyed it. But I refuse to support companies like Tunnel, sorry Activision, and people like Bobby Goatcheese, sorry again, Kotick. It these kind of business practices, people with attitudes like Bob's that make me reluctant to buy their product (I bought COD4 second hand). I've worked for businesses, and people like these, and they're not fun places to be. Profit, Profit, Profit, backstabbing, and bullying. Seriously the games industry used be about passion, and fun. But as the industry has grown, and become more profitable, business people have taken control, and now rule the roost, with the artisans being trated like nothing more than assets to be utilised. No wonder there are so few games anymore that are truly ground breaking, engrossing, entertaining, or enthralling.

Well, it happened to the music industry, now the game industry in following their lead. Greedy *******s!
GravitySmacked 3rd March 2010, 13:48 Quote
I think the writing is on the wall with this series now.
UrbanMarine 3rd March 2010, 13:54 Quote
If only DICE would make another BF: Vietnam. I smell fail coming from TreyArch. Again........
DragunovHUN 3rd March 2010, 13:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by impar

Guess IW was not balanced for Activision...

Touché.
+rep
Psytek 3rd March 2010, 14:14 Quote
There may be contractual issues, but If I worked at IW, I'd be walking out with vince and Jason.
Neogumbercules 3rd March 2010, 14:26 Quote
I read on another gaming site that IW's contract with Activision ends in October. While IW publishes for activision, they are not wholly owned by them, and neither is the CoD franchise. Allegedly these bosses were starting to negotiate with other publishers about changing boats. If that's true, then it's possible Activision's plans for the franchise going beyond October were put in jeopardy, because I'm sure Kotick and the gang assumed IW was going to stay with them. I predict legal battle.

It probably went something like this:

Act: So... what are our plans going forward? We want three new CoD games by 2011! What'dya say!
IW: Um... yeah that sounds... great. I'm sure there will be...
Act: You don't sound so sure...
IW: Well um... you might wanna just hold off on those plans.
Act: Why?
IW: Just don't count your chickens before the eggs hatch...s'all I'm saying.
Act: ...
pizan 3rd March 2010, 14:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neogumbercules
I read on another gaming site that IW's contract with Activision ends in October. While IW publishes for activision, they are not wholly owned by them, and neither is the CoD franchise. Allegedly these bosses were starting to negotiate with other publishers about changing boats. If that's true, then it's possible Activision's plans for the franchise going beyond October were put in jeopardy, because I'm sure Kotick and the gang assumed IW was going to stay with them. I predict legal battle.

It probably went something like this:

Act: So... what are our plans going forward? We want three new CoD games by 2011! What'dya say!
IW: Um... yeah that sounds... great. I'm sure there will be...
Act: You don't sound so sure...
IW: Well um... you might wanna just hold off on those plans.
Act: Why?
IW: Just don't count your chickens before the eggs hatch...s'all I'm saying.
Act: ...
you forgot
Act: Don't worry 3 should be no problem...All you have to do is change the textures and background music and we got MW3.
Silver51 3rd March 2010, 14:41 Quote
WildThing 3rd March 2010, 14:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver51
http://i869.photobucket.com/albums/ab253/silverfish51/milking.jpg

I'm just going to leave this here.

ROFL! + rep :)
javaman 3rd March 2010, 16:56 Quote
Same old, different location. FPS are really starting to bore me these days.
Bazz 3rd March 2010, 17:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by fac51
I think the writing is on the wall with this series now.

Yup, and about time too, earlier stuff was great at the time, but the new stuff is just eye candy rubish, that isn't community based.
DLC will eventually kill online gaming, making way for useless console gaming.
Anfield 3rd March 2010, 17:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Passarinhuu
Well, it happened to the music industry, now the game industry in following their lead. Greedy *******s!

Funny thing is, the music industry is complaining that noone can be bothered to buy the rubbish they put out anymore and Activision is dumb enough to still copy them.
knyghtryda 3rd March 2010, 18:23 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Psytek
There may be contractual issues, but If I worked at IW, I'd be walking out with vince and Jason.

I think any new studio with ex-devs from IW would do rather well and get picked up by another publisher pretty quick. Talent + fresh start = big games and big money.
CardJoe 3rd March 2010, 18:31 Quote
Vince and Jason have probably signed non-competes which stop them from simply making a new COD though.
Farfalho 3rd March 2010, 19:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neogumbercules
I read on another gaming site that IW's contract with Activision ends in October. While IW publishes for activision, they are not wholly owned by them, and neither is the CoD franchise. Allegedly these bosses were starting to negotiate with other publishers about changing boats. If that's true, then it's possible Activision's plans for the franchise going beyond October were put in jeopardy, because I'm sure Kotick and the gang assumed IW was going to stay with them. I predict legal battle.

It probably went something like this:

Act: So... what are our plans going forward? We want three new CoD games by 2011! What'dya say!
IW: Um... yeah that sounds... great. I'm sure there will be...
Act: You don't sound so sure...
IW: Well um... you might wanna just hold off on those plans.
Act: Why?
IW: Just don't count your chickens before the eggs hatch...s'all I'm saying.
Act: ...

+1
Rofl.

I guess CoD as we know is pretty much dead... Oh well, there's still plenty of MW1 copies out there and I've got my MW2 copy too, so I'm safe xD
omicron 3rd March 2010, 20:09 Quote
Quote:
action adventure setting

.../cringe
javaman 3rd March 2010, 21:15 Quote
should make a WW1 game, at least it gives them an excuse to make a never ending spawn of enemies
Sloth 3rd March 2010, 21:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by javaman
should make a WW1 game, at least it gives them an excuse to make a never ending spawn of enemies
Oh sweet, I got three kills. Now I can call in an observation balloon!
bogie170 3rd March 2010, 22:11 Quote
Screw Activision and screw IW. They screwed us PC Gamers. What goes round comes round.
Thatguy119 3rd March 2010, 22:41 Quote
Exept most of us still own a copy of MW2 even if we dont like it.
Faulk_Wulf 4th March 2010, 01:10 Quote
How is it legal for Act to withhold royalties? (Please, I don't care about the drama of all this, I'm asking if it was Parent Company X withholding from Sub-Company Y, how would it be legal?)
[PUNK] crompers 4th March 2010, 13:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thatguy119
Exept most of us still own a copy of MW2 even if we dont like it.

speak for yourself. some people who signed that petition actually followed through on their convictions, and were rewarded by not having spent £40 on a crap game.
impar 4th March 2010, 13:49 Quote
Greetings!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thatguy119
Exept most of us still own a copy of MW2 even if we dont like it.
You bought it? The PC version? :|
Gunsmith 4th March 2010, 14:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crompers
speak for yourself. some people who signed that petition actually followed through on their convictions, and were rewarded by not having spent £40 on a crap game.

indeed, that 40 quid got me a world of goodness in the steam xmas sale
Sloth 4th March 2010, 18:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Faulk_Wulf
How is it legal for Act to withhold royalties? (Please, I don't care about the drama of all this, I'm asking if it was Parent Company X withholding from Sub-Company Y, how would it be legal?)
It most likely isn't, and action is now being taken about that by the two who were fired.
Quote:
Originally Posted by crompers
speak for yourself. some people who signed that petition actually followed through on their convictions, and were rewarded by not having spent £40 on a crap game.
Proud to be one of those. £40 bought me Bad Company 2, far superior modern shooter.
somidiot 5th March 2010, 03:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redsnake77
I'm not a fan of the MW COD series, I've played COD4and enjoyed it. But I refuse to support companies like Tunnel, sorry Activision, and people like Bobby Goatcheese, sorry again, Kotick. It these kind of business practices, people with attitudes like Bob's that make me reluctant to buy their product (I bought COD4 second hand). I've worked for businesses, and people like these, and they're not fun places to be. Profit, Profit, Profit, backstabbing, and bullying. Seriously the games industry used be about passion, and fun. But as the industry has grown, and become more profitable, business people have taken control, and now rule the roost, with the artisans being trated like nothing more than assets to be utilised. No wonder there are so few games anymore that are truly ground breaking, engrossing, entertaining, or enthralling. Look at the trend of shorter single player campaigns, with more and more invested in the multi player. This is because it's cheaper to do multi player well because you need less story telling, which requires passion and intelligence. Multi player will eventually open up more revenue streams too, with subscriptions, special load outs, etc. People seem to be getting rather narked to have to constantly pay for DLC to flesh out short single player campaigns too. Unfortunatley there's not much we can do. I will not be buying any Tunnelvision games, but as with what happened with MW2, lots of people said "They wouldn't buy the game without dedicated servers it was the principal of the thing!" What happened? It became the biggest selling game in history. Principals, what principals? Support these businesses and they'll keep on acting like gamers are just an ATM, rather than savvy, educated and enlightened consumers, who demand certain standards not only from the products they purchase, but from the producers of that product. OK deep breath, rant over.

+1
seems like all we actual gamers get anymore is bit's of scraps from a promising looking table. . . .
sounds like companies here in the states, way back when companies called their department dealing with the little people "Personnel" now it's "Human Resources." People are no longer important.
ZERO <ibis> 5th March 2010, 05:04 Quote
Well all we can do is wait for them to go out of business when people stop buying the games. It may take some time but at least it will be a lesson for the future that such models do not work. When you really think about computer games is a young industry. Companies for better or worse are going to try every idea they can think of to make money and there is nothing wrong with that. The frustrating thing is waiting around for the industry to find the best formula and until then we will see companies amass wealth and die out from going the wrong way. Take a look at valve who has also tired new ideas to make more money in the industry with things like steam. For them it worked out and now is a major part of their company, blizzard is taking a new approach with SCII. For better or worse these companies are going to try to make money any way the can. The good thing is that as long as government stays out of the way the bad ideas and companies will eventually change or die and in the end we will end up with some great games and good times and those who worked hard on making these games will fly around in private jets.
1ad7 5th March 2010, 06:05 Quote
hahahahaha they made 1billion dollars and had to remove two 9 year tenured executives from the offices? Dear god... what will they do when they lose money?

This is what should happen when you **** the fan base who made you a name. Us Pc Gamers, maybe for once justice is served.
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