Four more development vets flee Infinity Ward

Wednesday, 14th April 2010 04:45 GMT By Nathan Grayson


When it rains and your old bosses open up a new studio, it pours.

Or at least, we’re pretty sure that’s how the saying goes.

Another day, another troop of Infinity Ward veterans packing their bags. Kotaku brings word that today’s fearsome foursome is composed of none other than Modern Warfare 2 lead designers Steve Fukuda and Zied Reike, programmer Rayme Vinson, and lead artist Chris Cherubini.

So far, only Cherubini’s confirmed his departure, but based on recent events, we don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to guess that the others have given Infinity Ward the old “It’s not you, it’s me” speech as well.

Messy break-up, this. Sure, Activision’s probably gonna keep custody of the Modern Warfare license, but at this point, that might as well be the family dog. West and Zampella, meanwhile, got the kids, house, furniture, and car.



  1. Phoenixblight

    The numbers are growing. I need to go change my pants ;)

    #1 5 years ago
  2. JimFear666

    activision dont care about it cause everything they care about is to screw you with unfinished games with a shitload of glitch.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Anders

    How large was the Infinity Ward team before this debacle begun?

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Johnny Cullen

    Give or take, roughly about 100. So with these four now gone, plus the five that left before today – and of course Zampella and West – that leaves 89.

    Numbers are going down fast, innit.

    #4 5 years ago
  5. mojo

    oh i love that!!

    Kotick, u need to suck harder!!

    ” plus the five that left before today ”
    Five? even better, had 4 in mind so far.

    #5 5 years ago
  6. mington

    i’d imagine they are sending out (secret) invites for there top talent back at Activision

    poach there staff back

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Retroid

    ‘Scuse me, but it’s “their top talent” and “their staff”.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. mington

    its “excuse me” and “fuck off” :P

    i also have trouble with to or too…when do you use an extra o?

    school failed me

    #8 5 years ago
  9. Blerk

    This can’t end well for Infinity Ward, I’m sure. The question is, do Activision even care? They can get other teams to make Call of Duty games until doomsday and 95% of the audience won’t even realise that it’s not the same as it used to be.

    If too many people go I can kind of imagine Acti just closing them down.

    #9 5 years ago
  10. Gekidami

    What games are ‘unfinished and full of glitches’? Because you know, if you’re talking about MW2 you might want to point the finger at IW rather then Acti. Acti may own the IP and publish it but IW are fully responsible for making it.

    #10 5 years ago
  11. endgame

    so sad that Blerk is right. there’s a big chance that most of the ppl who buy/bought COD games don’t even know who IW is. so it won’t matter for them if IW closes down and other developers will work at COD games. well, at least we know. at least we’re smart enough not to buy future COD titles. thk fuck for DICE and the BF series and hopefully thk f**k for Respawn Entertainment as well.

    #11 5 years ago
  12. NiceFellow

    Not a surprise. The bigger question is whether it turns out Activision really have killed the goose or whether they can get away with inferior studios producing endless copies?

    I’m fully expecting a slow death for the CoD brand of the most ignominious fashion.

    #12 5 years ago

    They can get other teams to make Call of Duty games until doomsday and 95% of the audience won’t even realise that it’s not the same as it used to be.

    Don’t be so naïve.

    If that’s really the case, then why do Treyarch’s CoD games (almost exact copies of everything IW did in the previous version, bar the graphics) always sell less than IW’s? If 95% of people can’t tell the difference, then why aren’t 95% of people buying the Treyarch made sequels?

    Don’t forget that Treyarch’s only successful CoD was basically a copy and paste job. Who will they copy from now? I’ve seen nothing original from them that suggests to me that they could take CoD forward on their own, so they need to prove that they’re better than a PS2 spiderman game before I’d give them the benefit of the doubt.

    There are literally dozens of CoD clones, but other than BF, all of them just fall by the wayside within a couple of months (and that’s probably down to BF’s hardcore following since the BF2 days). If it was so easy to make an FPS that people like playing, then EA probably wouldn’t waste their million dollar bounties on Zampela and West.

    MW2 is probably the most played full priced game in the world right now, along with WoW (in terms of unique players and hours played). People keep coming back to it because no other dev has been able to make a game which is as addictive. Simple as.

    Not because people like the name, the brand or a few ads during the Superbowl.

    So that’s the game, but what about the brand?

    I’m not convinced that all of these casual gamers who know little to nothing about game devs or publishers are so brand loyal as that.

    If they care so little about who made the game, then why are they going to care which game they’re playing. Those kind of people are more interested in ‘the latest thing’ than remaining brand loyal.

    Look at Championshop Manager. It’s still one of the most recognisable brands in gaming, but it’s now been taken over almost completely by Football Manager.

    Even to the point where some people still even refer to FM as CM, but there’s no way they’d play CM now.

    Why? Because Sports Interactive and SEGA went on the offensive letting people know that ‘the guys who made you love CM are now making FM.’

    ‘Not only that, but your buddies, who made CM for you were ‘done over’ by the greedy, money hungry, corporate beasts at Eidos.’

    So that’s exactly what I’m expecting EA to do.

    I’m expecting millions in advertising and promotion that starts with ‘FROM THE ORIGINAL TEAM BEHIND CALL OF DUTY 2,4 AND MODERN WARFARE 2′.

    I’m expecting media campaigns that ram this very point down people’s throats.

    I’m not convinced that 95% of the people who bought CoD are so brand loyal or stupid that they’d buy a bad game because they like the title.

    If the game is actually good, then that’s another matter entirely, but I’m more inclined to believe that the majority of CoD players are online gamers who will have no problem whatsoever dumping CoD if something better comes along.

    #13 5 years ago
  14. Blerk

    Maybe 90%, then.

    #14 5 years ago
  15. endgame

    lol Blerk!

    but seriously G1GAHURTZ, u’r slightly wrong. although I agree with everything u said I have to remind u that CoD WaW actually sold well. sad and stupid, but true. does any1 know the actual numbers?

    #15 5 years ago
  16. The Hindle

    Soon as Jason West and Vince Zampella left Medal of honour that franchise went shit in terms of quality and sales wise. The same will happen to Cod.

    #16 5 years ago
  17. DaMan

    EA were just generally making crappy games in that time period (early-mid 2000s). Airborne was decent.

    #17 5 years ago

    @ endgame:

    Yeah, it sold well. Not as good as CoD4, but relatively close iirc.

    The thing is though, that WaW was basically just a CoD4 copy and paste job. Treyarch should still be able to copy and paste from MW2 into CoD7 now, so that should sell well also, but what about later versions?

    Who are they going to copy from then?

    I’m expecting Respawn to stay true to form and continue innovating and delivering for their fans.

    As for Treyarch and whoever else gets roped into trying to live up to the old IW’s standards, then they have it all to prove. So my current feeling is that Acti will still only be able to push out re-skinned versions of MW2, while Respawn continue improving what they already know how to do.

    #18 5 years ago
  19. VTHockey411

    @Gekidami – Would have to say that even though IW released the buggy, glitchy game that was MW2, given what West and Zampella claimed in their lawsuit, they were forced to rush the product out before they felt it was ready. Thus, the blame goes back to Activision, again.

    Activision, no doubt, will get their hands on Modern Warfare, but at that point, who will care? It’s already becoming an irrelevant series thanks to a god-awful plot and rising price-points that are far above other games in the industry. $15 for a map pack??? Are you kidding me!!!

    #19 5 years ago
  20. Yoshi

    Maybe Respawn can now think of a better title name than ‘Modern Warfare’ :P

    #20 5 years ago
  21. DaMan

    Medal of crack.

    #21 5 years ago
  22. Dralen

    This is too good.

    #22 5 years ago
  23. Amored

    Hahaha! I’m so amused by this! Poweer to Respawn!!!

    #23 5 years ago

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