38 Infinity Ward employees sue Activision

And so the saga continues.

Jason West and Vince Zampella are no long the only people suing Activision over a lack of royalties regarding Modern Warfare 2. It now appears that a large chunk of the Infinity Ward studio itself is now seeking legal action against the publisher.

The Lost Angeles Supreme Court received a lawsuit filed this morning by 38 plaintiffs calling themselves the "Infinity Ward Employee Group" (to be referred to as IWEG for the rest of this article) against Activision. IWEG is alleging in the lawsuit that the company has performed a breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, violation of California labor code and more. They are also seeking royalties.

"Activision owes my clients approximately $75 million to $125 million dollars," said Bruce Isaacs, one of the IWEG’s attorneys at Wyman & Isaacs LLP. "Activision has withheld most of the money to force many of my people to stay, some against their will, so that they would finish the delivery of Modern Warfare 3. That is not what they wanted to do. Many of them. My clients’ entitled to their money. Activision has no right to withhold their money — our money."

IWEG comprises of "a significant portion of the members of the creative team" who "designed, developed and delivered" Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. The group has been paid $28 million in royalties so far, but claim that they are still owed $54 million based on 2009 profits. The suit however is asking for $75 million to at least $125 million in "compensatory damages".

The suit also claims that Activision has been withholding the royalties from the IWEG in order to keep them with the publisher until Modern Warfare 3 is produced.

"In short," reads the lawsuit, "Activision withheld the property of the IWEG in an attempt to keep the employees hostage so that Activision could reap the benefit of the completion of Modern Warfare 3."

The IWEG doesn’t just want the money they feel owed to them either. They also want, according to the lawsuit, "Activision’s net worth".

Activision’s alleged failure of payment, as believed by the IWEG, is a violation of the California Labor Code.

"Activision has a duty to pay all of the members of the IWEG all of the money they are owed […] within 72 hours of the termination of their employment," reads the lawsuit. "Activision, however, has failed to do so."

The publisher has since been contacted for comment and responded with a statement.

"Activision believes the action is without merit," said a company spokesperson over e-mail. "Activision retains the discretion to determine the amount and the schedule of bonus payments for MW2 and has acted consistent with its rights and the law at all times. We look forward to getting judicial confirmation that our position is right."

Here’s the full list of plantiffs mentioned in the suit:

Todd Alderman, Frank Gigliotti, Roger Abrahamsson, Brad Allen, Mohammad Alavi, Richard Baker, Chad Barb, Keith Bell, Chris Cherubini, Taihoon William Cho, Chris Dionne, Joel Emslie, Robert Field, Steve Fuduka, Robert Gaines, Chance Glasco, Preston Glenn, Joel Gompert, Chad Grenier, Mark Grigsby, John Haggerty, Jacob Michael Keating, Chris Lambert, Ryan Lastimosa, Fairfax S. McCandlish IV, Jason McCord, Brent Mcleod, John Paul Messerly, Stephen Miller, Zied Rieke, Jon Shiring, John Slayback, Richard Smith, Geoffery Smith, Jiesang Song, Todd Sue, Rayme C. Vinson and Lei Yang. 



  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Myspace
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Stumnleupon
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Technorati
Author: Mike Murphy View all posts by
Mike has been playing games for over two decades. His earliest memories are of shooting ducks and stomping goombas on NES, and over the years, the hobby became one of his biggest passions. Mike has worked with GamerNode as a writer and editor since 2009, giving you news, reviews, previews, a voice on the VS Node Podcast, and much more.

Leave A Response

You must be logged in to post a comment.