Contract Between Bungie and Activision Details Sci-Fantasy, Action FPS
Court battles are a funny thing, especially when it involves game companies. Activision and former Infinity Ward head honchos Jason West and Vince Zampella are in a nasty court battle over the Call of Duty franchise, but an interesting document has come to light showcasing a new series under development at Bungie. The studio famous for Halo has a contract with Activision to make a series of four sci-fantasy, action first-person shooters code-named "Destiny" to be released every other year starting in Fall 2013. Four DLC packs code-named "Comet" would release every other year beginning in Fall 2014 were also included in the contract. This is the first mention of any release details set up between Activision and Bungie for the new title, and I imagine is not how Bungie wanted the game to be revealed.
The first game (potentially the second too) would initially be for the Xbox 360 and its successor (listed as Xbox 720 in the contract), with future titles releasing on the PC and PlayStation 3 successor. The contract also revealed Bungie is at work on a possible sequel to Marathon, which originally launched on the Mac in 1994. No more than five percent of Bungie's staff would work on the action-shooter Marathon remake while the rest of the staff would remain under contract with Activision.
If you are wondering what all of this has to do with the Call of Duty case, well West and Zampella argue they took a smaller royalty rate to have more control over CoD. The two designers say they should be entitled to compensation for the "value of the creative authority," which could be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. If the case goes to trail on May 29th as scheduled, this contract and more could be just the iceberg of information to comb over.