Tuesday, April 27, 2010

P.S. And You Owe Us Money

A postscript to the Activision post earlier today. From G4, news of a lawsuit filed by 38 current and former Infinity Ward employees:
The IWEG [Infinity Ward employees group] is looking "to recover between $75 million and $125 million, if not more, in compensatory damages." That number's derived from:

* Unpaid bonuses from 2009 and 2010 sales generated by Modern Warfare 2 -- fourth quarter 2009 and first quarter 2010, specifically.
* Bonuses "due and owing to them" past first quarter 2010.
* "Bonus/royalty/profit participation" related to "technology/engine" royalties, "other special performance bonuses," "other studio bonuses" or "any other bonus/royalty/profit participation."'
* Lost value on "restricted stock units" that Activision "promised" would vest (read: own it in your own name and purchase it from Activision) when Modern Warfare 2 sales eclipsed Modern Warfare 1, which "has long ago occurred."
* Money owed as it relates to Modern Warfare 2 "sister games, including but not limited to" the oft-mentioned Modern Warfare 3, "if Modern Warfare 3 is ultimately delivered and marketed."
* Interest rates related to the above sums of money.

So if you include Zampella and West, roughly forty percent of Infinity Ward at the time Modern Warfare 2 shipped are currently suing Activision.
This has gone from being somewhat embarrassing for Activision (when the original lawsuit by Zampella and West was filed) to being a complete freaking disaster.

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