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Security guards sent to Infinity Ward. West and Zampella fired for "insubordination"

Talon

Member
Jun 19, 2008
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Well, if it turns out that IW actually was forced out in some degree, Activision ain't getting a dime of my money for MW2 DLC.
 

platypotamus

Member
Jun 6, 2006
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RainbowByte said:
If they are let go, they're most likely being given golden parachutes and signing a no-compete + no solicit former colleagues for at least 1year.
For anyone else not at the top of the food chain that is kept, they'd probably get offered a bonus and need to sign a no-compete+contract to lock them down (prevent them from not quitting or going off to work on battlefield, etc )

no-competes are unenforceable in CA, IIRC
 

silentmac

Neo Member
Jun 24, 2009
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Activision Suit: We are excited to work with you to make Modern Warfare 3 for next holiday season!

Vince: Yeah about that. We would like to move the Call of Duty brand in a new direction for the next release. We've done some storyboarding for Vietnam, World War I, The Future, The Civil War... Hell, even the Revolutionary War. Just please don't make us make another direct sequel.

Activision: What's the problem? You already have the assets. We already told the Treyarch guys to have World at War 2 ready for this Summer.

Jason: We just don't want to burn out the fans or our team.

Activision: But you have a contract to product 6 games in the next 5 years for us under the Modern Warfare brand!

Vince: Come'on! You aren't going to hold us to that. We just made the best selling game ever for you!

Activision: You will have a Modern Warfare game for us this holiday season or we will be forced to shut you down! Oh and by the way, we want you to make the Wii version the lead SKU this time...

Vince & Jason: (Pull out M16s from under conference table)
 

Truespeed

Member
May 6, 2007
7,256
314
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Manos: The Hans of Fate said:
Out of morbid interest, who was the guy at IW who kept talking crap on the people at Treyarch?

That would be the "community" guy or whatever he's calling himself nowadays - Bowling.
 

Instro

Member
Jan 14, 2009
24,478
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This is incredibly strange, if any of this is true Im amazed at how quickly relations between IW and Activision could have gone south so quickly unless this has been brewing for awhile.
 

platypotamus

Member
Jun 6, 2006
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shagg_187 said:
He updated his facebook (or if it indeed is his) the very same day.
When you get laid off, you start looking for a new job instead of crying about the one you lost.

When I last got laid off, I got plastered with a bunch of my fellow laid off coworkers.
 

benjipwns

Member
Jul 11, 2007
24,408
2,055
1,560
Instro said:
This is incredibly strange, if any of this is true Im amazed at how quickly relations between IW and Activision could have gone south so quickly unless this has been brewing for awhile.
http://www.gamespot.com/pc/action/callofduty4modernwarfare/news.html?sid=6232123
"Activision…did not want Modern Warfare," Infinity Ward chief creative officer Vince Zampella told Britain-based Official PlayStation Magazine in an interview, relayed by UK gaming site CVG. "They thought working on a modern game was risky and [thought], 'Oh my god you can't do that, it's crazy!' They were doing market research to show us we were wrong the whole time."

Call of Duty project lead Jason West went on to note, "We had to fight for everything. They wanted it to be World War II. Again."

In fact, Zampella said that Infinity Ward was ready to leave the WWII setting after the original Call of Duty, which received glowing reviews upon its release for the PC in 2003. Notably, Activision announced that it had acquired the Encino, California-based developer for an undisclosed sum one day after the original COD shipped in October of that year.

"With Call of Duty 2, we were dead set against it being World War II," Zampella said. "But Activision really wanted it, the compromise sort of being that we'd get some dev kits for consoles in exchange for doing a World War II game. We always wanted to be on consoles and Activision saw us as more of a PC developer."
 

Sporty

Neo Member
Jan 28, 2008
255
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bhlaab said:
I have a feeling the major players could reform as a brand new company fairly easily.


Well they already did that once from MoH. But it sucks for them to have to start over again now.

I'm sure if they do form another studio they will probably never want to sell again after this.
 

RainbowByte

Neo Member
Jan 23, 2009
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platypotamus said:
no-competes are unenforceable in CA, IIRC
It doesn't stop employers from strong-arming employees from signing them, and company lawyers dragging people into court even if it gets thrown out has a way of still intimidating people.
If the higher ups get let go, a condition of their pay-out is to not tip-off the employees and go into hiding or be 'unavailable' until the employess are let go, etc
 

xbhaskarx

Member
Aug 13, 2007
32,784
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oi39.tinypic.com
XiaNaphryz said:
Well, his LinkedIn now says this (note how it says March 2010 as opposed to Present):

President/Game Director/CCO/CTO
Infinity Ward
Public Company; ATVI; Computer Games industry

January 2001 – March 2010 (9 years 3 months)

Also, said job title is in the "Past" category as opposed to "Current."

wow
 

web01

Member
Jan 20, 2008
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Seems unlikely they would shut down the entire studio, would be more likely they just get rid of any senior members that have been causing them trouble.
 

EmCeeGramr

Member
Jun 25, 2005
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Say what you will about IW, but there's no denying it's been quite a dramatic journey from their founding to this latest development.
 

platypotamus

Member
Jun 6, 2006
8,823
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Kusagari said:
This is the strangest thing I've ever seen. On what planet do you make the fastest selling game ever and get fired a few months later?

I remember the days when that scenario would have surprised me.
 

KratosKilla

Banned
Aug 4, 2009
242
0
0
This is pretty messed up.

Tina Sanchez from 1up tweeted.
My friends are going to be okay. =] fucked up stuff though

But that could be the people she's friends with there or everyone at IW.
 

~Kinggi~

Banned
Oct 22, 2006
23,460
0
0
RainbowByte said:
It doesn't stop employers from strong-arming employees from signing them, and company lawyers dragging people into court even if it gets thrown out has a way of still intimidating people.
If the higher ups get let go, a condition of their pay-out is to not tip-off the employees and go into hiding or be 'unavailable' until the employess are let go, etc

So they disappear for the day until they fire the rest of the staff? Staff gets freaked out wondering where they went.
 

DidntKnowJack

Member
Feb 26, 2009
13,815
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California
Strange days have found us
Strange days have tracked us down
They're going to destroy
Our casual joys
We shall go on playing
Or find a new town



This is all probably going to blow over soon, but it has been a weird 24 hours.
 

monchi-kun

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Feb 17, 2005
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note to developers

When Bobby Kotick comes by and brings cash give him the ASCII "No Thank You" and be on your merry way.

Independence has its risks but the price for selling out to a big publisher is shittier...
 
May 6, 2008
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Truespeed said:
That would be the "community" guy or whatever he's calling himself nowadays .
Unemployed I suspect. :lol

That's evil, but karma is a bitch. I really felt IW had no reason to crap on WaW, but they felt the need too.
 
Aug 24, 2009
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KratosKilla said:
This is pretty messed up.

Tina Sanchez from 1up tweeted.
My friends are going to be okay. =] fucked up stuff though

But that could be the people she's friends with there or everyone at IW.

Well, it could be some were lucky enough to just get moved rather than fired.
 

Tobor

Member
Sep 15, 2006
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Not a Call of Duty fan, but I'm really curious as to what went down here. Very interesting.
 

sdornan

Member
Dec 6, 2009
1,683
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Starkville, MS
monchi-kun said:
note to developers

When Bobby Kotick comes by and brings cash give him the ASCII "No Thank You" and be on your merry way.

Independence has its risks but the price for selling out to a big publisher is shittier...

I wouldn't say that's always the case. Sony seems like a decent publisher to work for, as does THQ and 2K Games. I would say Activision is the exception rather than the norm.
 
Aug 10, 2008
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I really am curious to know what caused the marriage to get sour in the last month. I also would like to know if IW was strictly taking orders regarding the PC version of MW2 or not. Perhaps this info will eventually come out?
 

Kholdstare

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Oct 7, 2009
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Ottawa


Grabbed a screencap.


EDIT: yay for stretching the page.
 

SapientWolf

Trucker Sexologist
Jul 4, 2004
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ronito said:
why would you do this? Your horse finally wins the Kentucky Derby and you take him out back and shoot him?
I think the better analogy would be that they kept the horse and fired the rider.
 

silentmac

Neo Member
Jun 24, 2009
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ronito said:
why would you do this? Your horse finally wins the Kentucky Derby and you take him out back and shoot him?

Activision more likely did something like this...

 

XiaNaphryz

LATIN, MATRIPEDICABUS, DO YOU SPEAK IT
Nov 5, 2005
52,177
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SF Bay Area
Kholdstare101 said:
Grabbed a screencap.

shagg_187 said:
Oh and from the looks of it, Jason has changed his LinkedIn profile. I don't see all that info anymore. Is it just me?
I'm guessing you're not seeing any date specifics because the guy who posted the screencap's not at least 3 degrees away.

You still see the title listed as "Past" though.
 

RainbowByte

Neo Member
Jan 23, 2009
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Averon said:
What developer will willingly sell themselves to Activision after this? :lol
the kind with people at the top that like bags of money, some climb to the top not because they love games, but to make money and cash out
 

Truespeed

Member
May 6, 2007
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Manos: The Hans of Fate said:
Unemployed I suspect. :lol

That's evil, but karma is a bitch. I really felt IW had no reason to crap on WaW, but they felt the need too.

There's a bit more to it than that. I think he didn't like how they were spending all of their time comparing it to COD 4 instead of talking about their own game.
 

~Kinggi~

Banned
Oct 22, 2006
23,460
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Kusagari said:
Yeah, if not even Infinity Ward is safe then nobody is safe from Activision. Perhaps not even Blizzard.
If blizzard is discarded, god help Kotick. PC crew will hack a nuke to launch at his house.
 

platypotamus

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Jun 6, 2006
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I AM JOHN! said:
Out of curiosity, where were you working at the time? Troika?

Correct. One of my favorite topics with my wife: "Would we have gotten married, and would we live in Southern California if Troika hadn't gone out of business? Because I think I'd still want to be working there... and you said you'd never live there."