-Massively multiplayer style, sci-fantasy action shooter series codenamed Destiny with expansion packs codenamed Comet.
-Four games releasing in 2013, 2015, 2017, and 2019.
-Four expansion packs releasing in 2014, 2016, 2018, and 2020.
-The main games will be retail.
-There will be other DLC, subscriptions, microtransactions, and value added services.
-The first game will be an Xbox 360 and "Xbox 720" timed exclusive.
-Activision and Bungie are considering a PS3 version of the first game in 2014.
-The second game is targeted for 360, 720, PS4, and Windows PC, though the contract notes that some of those SKUs may be dropped if they decide they are not worthwhile or not technically feasible.
-Activision can terminate the contract without penalty if Destiny doesn't sell at least 5 million units in the first six months, or for any reason they please after the second expansion pack releases.
-Bungie is also working on a Marathon game, but currently no more than 5% of their staff (nor more than 5% of their key staff) can work on it, and the amount of employees that can work on it goes up slowly as they hit cumulative profit goals. There are also limits on when Bungie can release Marathon. For specifics on this see the contract images at the bottom since it's pretty lengthy.
-The game is targeting a rating of Teen/PEGI 16, but Bungie is not contractually held to hit this mark.
-The contract implies the game has in-game game masters, like those people who work for Blizzard and handle user requests in World of Warcraft while playing some kind of digital representation in the MMO world (or at least being accessible through in game chat).
-Bungie will receive a $2.5 million bonus if Destiny achieves a GameRankings.com rating of 90 or higher on Xbox 360 as measured 30 days after release.
-Bungie will also get a 20% royalty of the first $100 million in cumulative operating income, 24% on the income between $101-$400 million, and 35% on the income $401 million or above. These royalties are subject to a penalty of 2%, 2.4%, and 3.5% respectively if the games are delayed for reasons caused by Bungie within reason (i.e. if an earthquake destroys their studio they're not at fault, but if they just don't get the game done on time they are). These last two bullet points I'm leaving in the contract itself to cut down on OP length.
Details of video game publisherActivision Blizzard Inc.'s high-profile deal in 2010 with Bungie Inc. to make an original game series has been made public for the first time as part of a separate lawsuit involving the Call of Duty game franchise.
The deal with Bungie, considered one of the hottest studios in the industry, at the time helped Activision save face in the midst of an ugly legal fight with former Call of Duty developers Jason West and Vincent Zampella, whom Activision had fired a month earlier in March 2010. But at what cost?
Activision's contract with Bungie, recently unsealed as part of Activision's lawsuit against West and Zampella, outlines exactly what those costs are.
The 27-page agreement calls for Bungie to develop four "sci-fantasy, action shooter games," code-named "Destiny," released every other year, beginning in the fall of 2013. Bungie also agreed to put out four downloadable expansion packs code-named "Comet," every other year beginning in the fall of 2014. Activision has never disclosed release plans for Bungie's titles.
The first Destiny game will initially only be available on Microsoft's Xbox 360 consoles, as well as its potential successor, which the contract refers to as the "Xbox 720." Later games would be made for Xbox consoles as well as Sony Corp.'s expected successor to the PlayStation 3, and on personal computers.
Bungie would be entitled to royalties ranging from 20% to 35% of "operating income," the amount left over after Activision deducts its costs, including development, production and marketing expenses.
Under the contract, which may have been amended since it went into effect on April 16, 2010, Activision would also pay Bungie $2.5 million a year in bonuses between 2010 and 2013 if the Bellevue, Wash., studio meets certain quality and budget milestones. Bungie gets another $2.5 million if the first Destiny game achieves a score of 90 or better out of 100 on GameRankings.com, a site that summarizes reviews by game critics.
The contract also reveals for the first time that Bungie is working on a potential successor to its Marathon game, which became a cult hit after it was published in 1994 for the Apple Mac. The document refers to Bungie's right to devote no more than 5% of its staff to develop an action-shooter prototype dubbed Marathon while Bungie remains under contract with Activision.
Well, then. Holy shit. More at the link, of course.
Full contract is right here