Activision Fires Infinity Ward’s Studio Heads

Activision has fired the two studio heads of Infinity Ward, Jason West and Vince Zampella, sighting “insubordination” and “breach of contract”. It’s been rumored that there had been tension between the publisher and developer regarding the creative direction of the Call of Duty series. I’m guessing it went something like this:

Activision: Hey Infinity Ward, Modern Warfare 2 sold like a ton of copies. Can you make them faster so we can get more money?

Infinity Ward: Well, yeah…the thing is, we kind of want to branch out with the Call of Duty series and do something different. Maybe a Call of Duty racing game or something. Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing is sweet as hell. I don’t know…all these FPS are getting kind of boring, we can’t keep doing this stuff. I mean, did you see that totally over the top Airport level, how can we ever hope to beat that?

Activision: Well, yeah, that’s not going to work. I think we’d rather make a bazillion more dollars. Even better, maybe if you could make four Call of Duty games a year…we could make four bazillion dollars! You like money, right? Oh! Don’t forget DLC, we need to be more aggressive with that stuff. Maybe $10 extra to enable online play or something, that would be totally sweet for us.

Infinity Ward: Fuck you.

Activision: No, fuck you.

(physical violence ensues, security gets called, etc.)

Seems similiar to what Bungie went through with the Halo series. I guess I can understand both sides of the issue, but I hate seeing creativity stifled in favor of a quick buck.

Regardless, I can’t wait to see what happens to the Call of Duty series. Probably not a good thing.

Nintendo 2010 Line-Up

Mega-Man-10

Pretty interesting list of games. I think I’m most looking forward to Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey from Atlus on the DS (March 10). Capcom also has some pretty good games coming: Tatsunoko Vs. Capcom on Wii, Phoenix Wright on WiiWare, Ace Attorney Investigations on DS, and Mega Man 10, the sequel to the download-only Mega Man 9.

The whole list, below:

Continue reading Nintendo 2010 Line-Up

VGA 2009 Award List

Game of the Year: Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Studio of the Year: Rocksteady Studios
Best Independent Game Fueld by Dew: Flower
Best Xbox 360 Game: Left 4 Dead 2
Best PS3 Game: Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Best Wii Game: New Super Mario Bros. Wii
Best PC Game: Dragon Age: Origins
Best Handheld Game: Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
Best Shooter: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Best Fighting Game: Street Fighter IV
Best Action Adventure Game: Assassin’s Creed II
Best RPG: Dragon Age: Origins
Best Multiplayer Game: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Best Individual Sports Game: UFC 2009 Undisputed
Best Team Sports Game: NHL 10
Best Driving Game: Forza Motorsport 3
Best Music Game: The Beatles: Rock Band
Best Soundtrack: DJ Hero
Best Original Score: Halo 3: ODST
Best Graphics: Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Best Game Based On A Movie/TV Show: South Park Let’s Go Tower Defense Play!
Best Performance By A Human Female: Megan Fox as Mikaela Banes in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Best Performance By A Human Male: Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Best Cast: X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Best Voice: Jack Black in Brutal Legend
Best Downloadable Game: Shadow Complex
Best DLC: Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony
Most Anticipated Game of 2010: God of War III

I really think best soundtrack should have gone to Brutal Legend and not DJ Hero.

Resident Evil Chopper

RE_chopper_final__sml_

“I like motorcycles AND I like Resident Evil. How can I combine the two?”

Capcom has the answer for you.

Good afternoon,

Wanted to drop you a line to introduce you to Capcom’s latest, possibly most unusual licensing deal in recent history: the Resident Evil custom chopper. Built by Savage Cycles (http://www.savagecyclesonline.com/About.html) in collaboration with Capcom, the Resident Evil Chopper is the ultimate fusion of survival horror and outlaw bike. Each bike is custom built by the artisans at Savage and will be available for purchase in limited number by Capcom fans and chopper enthusiasts alike.

The first RE Chopper will be finished in earl January, but you can catch a glimpse of the design and build process documented on Capcom Unity, which I have Tiny URL’d for your convenience: http://tinyurl.com/y8wo3p5

Tim Schafer’s 20 Years In The Gaming Industry

Tim Schafer's Resume

The man behind Full Throttle, Grim Fandango, Psychonauts and Brutal Legend celebrated 20 years in the gaming industry the other day. To celebrate, he’s detailed his early days, showing off rejection letters from Atari and Hewlett-Packard. He also posted his resume to Lucasfilm, which is totally awesome. The resume clearly impressed, and he started at $27k.

[ Twenty Years Only A Few Tears ]

Microsoft Rumored To Buy EA

ea

Word on Wall Street is Microsoft is going to Buy EA. I don’t know why Wall Street would randomly make up a rumor like this…but it’s driven up the stock prices for both EA and Microsoft (EA is up 8.1 percent, Microsoft 1.1 percent). Even Reuters covered the issue.

“There’s talk that Microsoft might be interested in acquiring Electronic Arts. It’s unsubstantiated chatter, but it’s out there,” said Frederic Ruffy, options strategist at WhatsTrading.com in New York.

If Microsoft did purchase EA I wonder what would happen to all the future games EA is working on that would be released on both the PS3 and Xbox 360, or games coming to the Wii? I’d assume they’d be forced to release to Microsoft only, but who knows.

Halo’s Xbox Live Hub Opens In November

Halo Waypoint opens on Xbox Live This November

Microsoft announced this week that Halo Waypoint, a section of Xbox Live containing all things Halo, will be open November 5th. Halo Waypoint will have Halo podcasts, Halo trailers and Halo screen shots. It will be interesting to see what how it actually works when it’s released, I’m curious about the podcasts in particular.

Shadow Complex Breaks Xbox Live Sales Records

Shadow Complex Sets New Sales Records

Shadow Complex is now officially the most downloaded single-player (I guess some multi-player games must have beat it) Xbox Live game, selling 200,000 since it was released on August 19th. Which is good, Shadow Complex was an amazing game so it’s good to see other people enjoyed it, too.

“Congratulations to Chair Entertainment and Epic Games for creating an outstanding game,” said Scott Austin, director of digitally distributed games at Microsoft. “As the capstone title of the second annual Summer of Arcade program, “Shadow Complex” has raised the bar for downloadable games. We’re proud to offer such high-quality content on Xbox LIVE Arcade.”