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Call of Duty Rumors Laid to Rest by Activison Announcement

By Elegy - 23rd April 2008 - 04:19 AM

A recent announcement by Activision, the publisher of the notable Call of Duty series, as well as the famous Quake and Doom 3 franchises, laid to rest recent rumors that Infinity Ward was to be the only company allowed to develop games with the Call of Duty name. At the current stage of the series, Infinity Ward takes credit for the development for Call of Duty 1, 2, and 4, whereas Treyarch is responsible for the development of Call of Duty 3 and 5.

The rumors originated from an ex-Activision employee who was laid off when the Activision studio, Underground Development, was notified of its closing. Activision hopes to close the studio completely by the end of May 2008. The Underground Development studio based out of Foster City was responsible for the development and release of the PS3 version of Quake Wars: Enemy Territory, as well as the Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX and Aggressive Inline series of games.

The outline of the rumors was that Infinity Ward had entered into negotiation with Activision over the right to become the sole developer of the Call of Duty franchise. The negotiation was rumored to come into effect after Treyarch release Call of Duty 5. However, the ex-employee from whom the rumors spiraled came from Underground Development studio, which was working on two titles: an underfunded port of a Quake game, and a third-person action game with the Call of Duty name. If the alleged deal had gone through, Underground Development would have been forced to cease all activity and development on their COD project, leaving them with a stalled and uninspired port as their only project. A small studio as it was, such a negotiation would leave Underground with hardly any reason to continue to receive funding for its forty-five member development team.

Another branch of the Call of Duty series would have allowed Activision to release COD titles bi-annually, increasing their revenues from the bestselling franchise a great deal. With the closure of Underground, however, the release of another form of the COD franchise removes or at least reduces the probability of a new off-shoot from the proven series. The vice-president of Activision's corporate communications department calls the rumors "erroneous information regarding the CoD franchise." [Source]

The ex-employee of Activision, who refuses to give his name, seems to be just another disgruntled employee who tried, and failed, to spread false rumors about his former company. Activision and Infinity Ward have both emphatically denied any and all negotiations about this issue and have laid these rumors to rest.