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Judge dismisses one fraud claim in West and Zampella suit

by Steve Watts, Mar 09, 2012 1:30pm PST

A California State Superior Court judge has dismissed one of the two fraud claims raised by former Infinity Ward heads Jason West and Vince Zampella, in their suit against Activision. The two alleged that Activision had made commitments that the company executives never intended to honor.

Bloomberg reports that Judge Elihu Berle agreed with Activision that one claim shouldn't be allowed to go forward, but let the claim of promissory fraud stand.

The fraud claim was added to the suit last April. It claimed that Activision entered a Memorandum of Understanding with them, promising creative control, bonuses, and extra income from hit games. When West and Zampella raised eyebrows at the stipulation that these bonuses relied on continued employment, Activision CEO Bobby Kotick allegedly replied: "Don't worry about it. It's impossible for you guys to get fired."

Activision has also raised a counter-suit, claiming the two were in talks with rival publisher EA to set up a new development studio. West and Zampella's suit, with its remaining fraud claim, and Activision's counter-suit, will come to a head when proceedings begin on May 7.

West and Zampella are currently working at their new studio, Respawn Entertainment, and are teasing a project to be published by EA.





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