It's a comforting to know that there are things in the world that will happen like clockwork, and Infinity Ward employees leaving Activision has become one of those things. Except now they come together and rallied under one banner calling themselves... "The Infinity Ward Employee Group!" Pretty intimidating right? So far, sixteen employees have gone to the new developer company known as Respawn Entertainment and even more have just called it quits. Thirty eight of said employees have filed a class-action lawsuit against their former publisher for between $75 million and $125 million in unpaid bonuses.
The suit alleges that Activision breached their contract to IW employees by not paying all of the royalties owed after the success of
Modern Warfare 2. According to the report by G4, Activision has paid $28 million in royalties so far, but still owes $54 million for 2009, as well as other bonuses based on the first quarter of 2010. The group is also seeking $75 million to $500 million in punitive damages. Bruce Isaacs, attorney for IWEG stated the following:
We have known for some time that Palm has been in trouble, partly because of
Verizon's poor marketing of the Pre and Pixi smartphones. After searching for a buyer and being turned down by everyone, including the manufacturer of their devices, HTC, HP has stepped up and purchased the struggling handset maker for $1.2 billion.
HP feels that Palm has a lot to offer the company who has had nothing but bad luck in the competitive smartphone market. Todd Bradley, Executive Vice President of HP's Personal Systems Group said,
Palm's innovative operating system provides an ideal platform to expand HP's mobility strategy and create a unique HP experience spanning multiple mobile connected devices. And, Palm possesses significant IP assets and has a highly skilled team. The smartphone market is large, profitable and rapidly growing, and companies that can provide an integrated device and experience command a higher share. Advances in mobility are offering significant opportunities, and HP intends to be a leader in this market.
Palm's executive team seems to be excited about this acquisition as well. Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein said,
Since Jason West and Vince Zampella
left Infinity Ward and founded Respawn Entertainment, developers have been leaving Infinity Ward faster than passengers from the Titanic. Today's update brings us another 4, all of which have defected to the EA-backed Respawn.
Preston Glenn, Zied Rieke, Chad Genier and Sean Slayback, all designers, are the most recent batch of defectors. The total number of transfers (that we know of) is now at 16, with several more leaving for other studios as well. Stayback started his tenure with Treyarch, working on their last attempt at a
Call of Duty game, World at War, before leaving and joining Infinity Ward in time to work on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.
The guys over at PCGamerUK put together a video of the end credits to
Modern Warfare 2 with the names of everyone who has left scratched out. They have updated it somewhat, and here it is. It makes it much more obvious how big of a deal this is for Activision. Good thing they have Bungie on their side now.
Hit the break to see all the people that have left Infinity Ward.
Last week I told you about
The Legendary Few, a group of dedicated Halo 2 players who were still playing the game via Xbox Live, despite Microsoft shutting the service down 8 days prior. Well, today marks 16 days and there are still 8 very dedicated players still at it. Their dedication is about to earn them more than just nerd fame.
Microsoft has decided that, among all of the millions of Xbox players and
Halo fanatics in the world, The Legendary Few are the best people to get involved in the Halo: Reach beta program. Microsoft said in a statement,
Warner Bros. has sliced out a small corner of an already crowded party for themselves to release the still un-named third Christopher Nolan
Batman. The movie will premiere July 20, 2012, rounding out possibly the best nerd film season ever.
Already we have
on May 4, The Avengers Battleship's film adaptation on May 25, J.J. Abram's Nimoy-less sequel on June 29 and the Star Trek reboot film on July 3.
July has become a big month for Nolan films.
The Dark Knight opened July 18, 2008 and Inception, his current project, opens July 16 of this year. Let's hope 3 is a lucky number for him.
We covered a couple months ago about how
total music sales were down as well as piracy use from 2007 to 2009 but that was only for the United States. Here's a global stat: 13 markets worldwide saw an increase in music revenue for the year of 2009, including Australia, Mexico, South Korea, Sweden, the UK and Brazil. They all claim, however, that this means there needs to be more stringent anti-piracy laws.
IFPI, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, said, "South Korea and Sweden in particular saw striking returns to growth...showing how an improved legal environment can help impact on legitimate music sales."
This may be true, but the data doesn't show that. Sweden did approve a new law in 2009 that gave rights holders a court-dictated way to get named of accused piracy infringers, which caused The Pirate Bay admins to go on trial. But we've used those tactics here in the States for years. So why did we suffer but Sweden didn't?