One of the big stories of 2010 was when the two head executives of Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward were fired. The two men, Jason West and Vincent Zampella, sued Activision for not paying them the royalties owed to them. Activision sued back saying that West and Zampella were in secret talks with rival Electronic Arts.
The case has been sitting in legal purgatory since it was allowed to go ahead back in 2011. There was some movement last week, however, when State Superior Judge Elihu Berle of Los Angeles threw out the fraudulent-inducement claim made against Activision according to Bloomberg.
This doesn’t mean that Activision has won the case though. There is still one promissory fraud claim still being brought against the publisher. That case will go forward on May 7.
This is definitely one of the most interesting video game cases in recent history. If West and Zampella win, it will be a blow to Activision’s image and game library. Part of West and Zampella’s demands is that the Modern Warfare name be returned to them.
If Activision wins, it will be a headache for EA who would have to come clean on whether or not they were courting Infinity Ward talent to come work for them. It would also assuredly have some effect on West and Zampella’s new game for EA.
We’ll keep you updated on any developments in this interesting case. Call of Duty fans in particular will want to pay attention as it could have an effect on their favorite franchise.
The GUNNShop has a great breakdown of the lawsuit and the concerns that gamers may have.
Do you think that West and Zampella have a serious claim? Or is Activision right in that they were conspiring with Electronic Arts? Let us know in the comments.