Trouble at Call of Duty Dev Infinity Ward as Heads Depart Under Odd Circumstances (Updated)

By Brian Leahy, Mar 02, 2010 8:19am PST Original (3/1/10): G4tv.com's Patrick Klepek is reporting that a "tense" situation is brewing at Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 developer Infinity Ward. Citing a "source close to the... developer", Patrick paints a picture of what could be going on between IW and owner Activision Blizzard.

According to the story, "Infinity Ward studio heads Vince Zampella and Jason West reportedly met with Activision this morning and have not been seen by Infinity Ward staff members since." Later in the day, non-uniformed "bouncers" arrived at Infinity Ward, but would not explain why they were there.

No official word has been released by either company at this time.

Update (3/1/10): Earlier today, Activision filed an SEC report that mentioned looking into "breaches of contract and insubordination by two senior employees at Infinity Ward" and noted "this matter is expected to involve the departure of key personnel and litigation."

Additionally, a post on Facebook by Infinity Ward president Jason West, confirmed to be legitimate, mentions being newly unemployed. West has also updated his LinkedIn profile with a March 2010 end-date for his position at IW.

Update 2 (3/2/10) Studio head Vince Zampella has likewise confirmed a March 2010 departure from Infinity Ward via LinkedIn. As before, we'll keep you updated.

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  • In the Activision 10-K:

    In November 2009, the Company released Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, a game developed by one of the Company's wholly-owned studios, Infinity Ward. As noted above, Modern Warfare 2 was the best selling console title in the U.S. and Europe in 2009. Consistent with past practice, the Company intends to release a Call of Duty game in 2010 developed by another wholly-owned studio. The Company is concluding an internal human resources inquiry into breaches of contract and insubordination by two senior employees at Infinity Ward. This matter is expected to involve the departure of key personnel and litigation. At present, the Company does not expect this matter to have a material impact on the Company.