The lawsuit against Activision over the firings of Jason West and Vince Zampella continues to twist and turn, leaving onlookers confused and scratching heads over who’s suing whom over what and why. It’s maddening, I tell you.
The latest development was reported late yesterday, when news broke that Activision had settled a portion of its dispute with Electronic Arts. Activision named EA in a suit, alleging that they had conspired with West and Zampella to leave Activision with two years still left on their contract, says a report on Bloomberg. The details of the settlement are being kept secret, but Activision’s suit against EA called for $400 million in damages.
Of course, the attorney for West and Zampella, Robert Schwartz, is using this settlement as ammunition for his clients’ case against Activision:
“Activision dragged EA into the case hoping to distract from Activision’s wretched conduct towards West and Zampella. In dismissing EA today, Activision admits that it was never going to convince anyone that EA conspired with West and Zampella to breach their contracts or did anything else improper.”
The developers seek $1 billion in damages for alleged fraud and unpaid royalties. Not only that, but a report on GiantBomb alleges that Activision covertly launched something referred to as “Project Icebreaker,” in which the company actually instructed their director of IT to dig up dirt on West and Zampella as relations between Activision and Infinity Ward began to break down in 2009. In fact, the report claims that Activision even considered staging a fumigation or fire drill to get them out of their offices and break in to their computers.
Let’s just get this out of the way: holy moley. If this stuff is true, that’s some pretty shady stuff. No matter what, this whole thing gives me a headache. Can’t we all just play nice and have fun with Super Mario or something? Or settle it all via Quake tournament? Notch has the right idea, man.