Activision-Bungie Contract Has Rules About Everything, Even Easter Eggs

The ongoing legal saga between Activision and former Infinity Ward heads Jason West and Vincent Zampella continues to bring all sorts of once-secret documents to light. We already learned that Bungie's 2010 contract with Activision guarantees the delivery of four "sci-fantasy" shooter games, called Destiny. But what other details are hiding in that 27-page contract?

Over at Develop, they've compiled a list of all the details. For example, all Destiny and Comet games were to be designed to aim for a "T" rating, and down the line the series was to aim for the next generation of both Sony and Microsoft consoles (the PS4 and Xbox 720, whatever their true names) as well as PC.

But in among all of the standard "who owns what, when" of the business, budgets and bonuses, a number of other, slightly quirkier terms are outlined in the document as well. For example, the specification about Easter eggs included in any game:

Before commercial release of all games in the contract, Bungie must provide Activision with a list of Easter eggs it has spliced into the game. Activision, following the certification process, must provide Bungie with the same list.

The contract also specifies that "Each Bungie employee will receive two Activision games per year as a gift", and that Valve, Epic and Gearbox are strictly forbidden from developing any adaptations or conversions of any Destiny or Comet game.

Added to executive equity language clearly designed in the wake of the West and Zampella departure, the contract shows that Activision may have been excited about publishing a decade's worth of Bungie's games — but not so excited that they wanted to risk getting burned.

Revealed: The huge promises and secret stipulations of the Bungie Activision deal [Develop Online]

Top photo: Shutterstock


Comments

    Destiny. The extra syllable makes it next gen.

    Boooo.

    the whole point of easter eggs is they are secret from everyone who didn't make them.

      My assumption would be that most publishers would be covering this kind of thing since the Hot Coffee incident

      So they are really just trying to cover their asses

        Hot Coffee wasn't really an Easter Egg though, it was something that was going to be in the game, but they intentionally cut it, the issue is they didn't remove the code for that segment of gameplay and you needed an 3rd party peripheral to access it.

    "spliced in to the game"

    Well gosh, I better go and remove those easter-eggs with my code shears.

    Love it when lawyers try to get technical.

    “Each Bungie employee will receive two Activision games per year as a gift”

    if they were going to be more accurate that should have said

    “Each Bungie employee will receive two Activision games per year as a punishment”

      They need to clear out all the DJ Hero and Guitar Hero bundles somehow! ;)

        The gaming equivalent of a pair of socks and a hideous woolen jumper from your grandma?

          I hear DJ Hero isn't actually that bad, I was given DJ Hero Renegade Edition for a leaving work party (partly requested it, they didn't know what to buy) and I picked up DJ Hero 2 at GAME for $5... I have yet to play either of them, I really should give them a go seeing as though I've spend a total of $5 on the franchise.

          I am a fan of the music genre though, but I moved to Rock Band after GHIII, which was the Activision peak, they just ruined the whole genre after that point.

    The "Reveal all Easter Eggs" clause is a common one to allow the publisher to cover themselves in the event that someone tries to sneak something bad or illegal into the game. People I've worked with said that they once outsourced some work on a game to another company and the testing team found that one of the assets had a picture of gay porn hidden in it when it came back for testing.

    "Valve, Epic and Gearbox are strictly forbidden from developing any adaptations or conversions of any Destiny or Comet game."

    Wow, Acti seems to be really scared of the competition

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