Activision are holding off on paying royalties to Infinity Ward, due for the development and success of Modern Warfare 2, to keep staff from walking out following the sackings of ex-heads Jason West and Vince Zampella.
This Kotaku article also states that morale at the studio has hit rock bottom following the dismissal of the pair nearly two weeks ago.
The firing of Zampella and West was never stated, but the reasoning behind it could be breaches of “insubordination”, with unpaid royalties also rumoured to be the reason.
The insubordination breaches may revolve down to rumours that the pair were also looking to join EA, who said at GDC this week it was “disappointed” Activision has handled the situation the way it has.
The studio announced earlier this week it would release the first map pack for Modern Warfare 2 on March 30.
Meanwhile, Zampella and West have both filed a lawsuit against the publisher for $36 million in unpaid royalties, as well as control of the Modern Warfare IP.