Respawn's West And Zampella Sound Off On Upcoming Activision Lawsuit

Schwartz: You'll love this. Summer 2009 - May 2009. Before E3, the big [event] for Modern Warfare 2. Do you know who George Rose is? He was the head lawyer ­for ­[Activision].

So George Rose goes into the office of this guy named Thomas Fenady. He's some kind of IT whiz at Activision. He's sitting in his office and has no idea what is going to walk in his office. [Rose says], "Hey, this comes right from the top. I have a project for you from [Activision Blizzard CEO] Bobby Kotick. Jason and Vince - you know those guys? We're really sick of them. We want to get rid of them; we want to fire them. You need to break into their computers and dig up dirt to be used to justify firing them." [Fenady] testified to this.

So Fenady gets really nervous. He goes to his boss and his boss finds out about it and his boss says, "You should not get involved in something like this - this doesn't sound right." George Rose finds out about this, comes into his office, and goes, "Look, this comes from Bobby Kotick. If you do this, Bobby will protect you if anything happens. But remember, the number one priority is do not ­get ­caught."

I'd be very surprised if Infinity Ward is the only studio Activision's been mismanaging.

Still, it is a rather epic drama.

This is why I won't buy Blizzard games anymore.

Wait, I have to sign a contract to play the game that I just paid for? Do I need to get a lawyer? Can I do something in the game that could get me into legal trouble? I mean, I don't plan on playing public games or anything -- just me in my computer room, killing evil and screaming curse words until I lose my voice.

But I convinced myself it was nothing to get worked up about. It's just there to save their asses in case some random jackoff finds a way to make money off of them via lawsuit. Fine. I got through them all and was immediately taken to a screen that pulled the alarms from the back of my mind directly to the front, and cranked up the volume to "nuclear attack" levels.

No. No, no, no, no, no ... No.

For the six of you who just discovered the Internet today, that's a login screen. It's commonly associated with multiplayer online games like World of Warcraft and ... whatever other multiplayer games exist. Except there's a problem: Diablo III isn't a traditional MMO. You don't sign in to the game and immediately find yourself surrounded by a hundred other players shouting racial and homophobic slurs. You are in your own world. By yourself. Single player.

It is a single-player game with multiplayer options, just like all the other Diablo games. If you choose to play with your friends, you can. If you choose to join public games, you can. Otherwise, you're on your own -- and contrary to what MMO fanatics believe, this is the way millions of gamers prefer it.

So the gamerfolk in my office have been squealing Diablo III! Diablo III! That is, when they're not wandering around like zmobies from not sleeping. As one of these gamerfolk, they give me a shocked stare when I explain that while I'm sure that Diablo III is a polished nugget of Blizzardliness, I have no intention of purchasing it because I don't like where Blizzard has gone since Activi$ion showed up and ate them.

They think I'm silly. And maybe I am, but hey, at least I'm not silly enough to buy a polished game from a company I have ceased to believe in. Except, of course, GW2.

PWE is different, I have never believed in them. I have, however, admired their ruthless sexy evil. ;) That's another thing altogether.