Respawn Entertainment is the new studio headed by former Infinity Ward leadership Vince Zampella and Jason West, who were fired by Activision in March. Respawn has a website but no logo, no office, and no game. Respawn does have a publishing deal with Electronic Arts when the company does begin developing games over the next few years. The deal is with EA Partners, not EA proper, which means Zampella and West get something Activision couldn't provide: control over their creative destiny.
EA doesn't own Respawn's future gaming franchise, Respawn does.
The duo are still caught in a legal battle with their former publisher, but it hasn't stopped them from moving forward. Respawn is open for business as of today, actively accepting job applications, and they spoke over the phone with me this morning, joined by EA Partners head David De Martini, to discuss what life is like after Infinity Ward, their future and what it feels like to be fired from Activision.
G4: Why today? You're just starting. It's just the two of you and the EA partnership. What made it so important to get the announcement out so quickly, given that you also have the legal stuff happening in the background?
Vince Zampella: I think you nailed it on the head with the [idea that] it's just Jason and I. We need to get the hiring going. [laughs] We need to get the word out there that the studio exists and we want people to send their resumes in.
G4: Was it important to you that even though you have the legal situation that you're working out, to publicly say that "we are doing this, we're doing it now, and we aren't fading into the background"?
Zampella: For us, it's about getting back to what we love to do. We're gamers, it's in our blood, we want to get back to it. We don't don't want to sit around idle. It's important for that reason.
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