Modern Warfare’s Legal Showdown Gets Personal

Modern Warfare’s Legal Showdown Gets Personal

According to new documents released today, the ongoing legal battle between the creators of Call of Duty and the franchise’s publishers is beginning to take its toll on those involved.

Last month, Activision sought to expand the scope of the lawsuit by including Electronic Arts, the publisher that is now home to the new studio run by Jason West and Vince Zampella, as party to the case.

New documents obtained by Kotaku today allege that Activision knew of EA’s alleged involvement in the case over six months beforehand, and that by waiting until December 2010 to amend the case sought to have the beginning of the trial – scheduled for May – pushed back.

West and Zampella are protesting this expansion of the case and any possible delay, stating that the pair “are paying for this litigation from our own funds” and that to date the cost of the case has “[exceeded]our combined annual salaries”.

In addition to the monetary issues, the duo also state that the case is having an adverse effect on their attempts to get Respawn – which now employs “dozens” of employees – up and running.

In closing, they say “any delay of the trial in this lawsuit would increase the financial and non-financial burdens and would continue to distract us from running our business and earning a living.”


  • Well, seeing how as EA are co-accused can’t they field the legal team? or is this a case of each party needing its own lawyers?

    • If EA paid for the legal team, then West and Zampella could no longer use this as financial hardship argument to prevent the case being expanded. So it’s in their (and EA’s) best interest to pay for it themselves. It wouldn’t surprise me if EA pays them some kind of “bonus” after this is all over which just happens to be a similar amount to what they spent fighting the case, however.

  • Zach Levi as West and Jason Segel as Zampella. Seth Rogan as Bobby Kotick.

    Infinitely Warred. Coming soon.

      • Currently trying to find a way to have Christopher Walken as one of the hot shot lawyers…

        “Is. It. True… Mistah Kotick…That. You. Nevvah. Intended. To. Pay. Messrs. West. And. Zampella…?”

  • Typical of a huge company like Activision, they have the money so they can wait until all the funds of the opposition have dried out, then the opposition will have no choice but to settle

    • Yeah but they run the risk of turning West and Zampella into martyrs and furthering the already prevalent view in the gaming community that they’re a bunch of money hungry dicks who care nothing for gamers or games, just profits.

      It could do more harm to their brand than good, but with what they’re filing at this point….I really dont think they care how the community sees them, they just want to hurt EA and Respawn because they got called out on their bullshit practices.

      • Yeah its also interesting to note that, Activision (the first 3rd party developer) originally left Atari for pretty much the exact same thing – the publisher treating the developers like nobodies. Now they’ve become the culprits!

    • Darth Bobby Force gripped Infinity Ward to death, but on the Respawn they’d switched sides. This made Darth Bobby sad so he’s having a tantrum.

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