Jason West and Vince Zampella, creators of the multi-billion dollar Call of Duty® franchise, announced the formation of a new development studio — Respawn Entertainment. The move positions the Respawn Entertainment leadership team as the owners of the intellectual property they create. The company will focus on creating state-of-the-art gaming experiences for global audiences.
This is an interesting development, EA has long since admired the success of the Call Of Duty franchise and now they have the folks behind its creation under their umbrella. Electronic Arts has the money, resources and commitment to really give the Call Of Duty franchise a run for its money now. They closed the gap significantly in the FPS market with their latest installment of Battlefield: Bad Company 2 by their DICE studio which could possibly be rolled into this new studio. Whether they take on new properties or reboot existing ones if I was Activision I would be concerned because they are about to find out just how committed gamers are to the Call Of Duty brand, especially since the consensus has been that the Treyarch installments have been inferior to the Infinity Ward versions. At this point, Infinity Ward is bleeding personnel on a massive scale and I will give you just one guess where they are going. The speed at which the marriage came together could either be that Activision’s initial accusations against the co-founders was accurate that they were shopping ideas to EA and violated their agreement or it could be a symptom of Activision believing that and then treating them in such a way that they fractured the relationship. I suppose its no different than when in sports a great player ends up at odds with their team and goes to their rival, but how all this will turn out well guess we will just have to wait and see.
Respawn is pleased to also announce that it has awarded EA, through the distinguished EA Partners program, exclusive worldwide publishing and distribution rights to future games. Terms were not disclosed. West and Zampella are represented by Creative Artists Agency (CAA).
“Respawn Entertainment marks a fresh start for Jason and me,” said Vince Zampella, General Manager of Respawn Entertainment. “For the past decade we led a great development team and poured our hearts into creating an epic game franchise. We’re very proud of what we built – and proud that so many millions of fans enjoyed those games. Today we hope to do it all over again — open a new studio, hire a great team, and create brand new games with a new partner, EA.”
“We’re excited,” added Jason West, President of Respawn Entertainment. “Now that the team is in control of the games and brands, we can ensure that the fans are treated as well as they deserve.”
Frank Gibeau, President of the EA Games Label commented, “This is the start of a great publishing partnership – one that I expect will develop blockbuster game franchises. Jason and Vince are two of the top creative leaders in the entertainment industry. At EA, we’re honored to be their partners and to give them the support they need to hire a team and return to making incredible games.” The studio is currently assembling a world-class team of designers, artists and engineers. Applicants can submit resumes to firstname.lastname@example.org.