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Ex-Infinity Ward heads join forces with EA

West and Zampella spawn Respawn Entertainment

In what's surely one of the biggest megatons of the year so far, fired Infinity Ward heads Jason West and Vince Zampella have announced the formation of a new development studio, Respawn Entertainment in partnership with EA.

The Call of Duty co-creators have signed up with EA Partners for exclusive worldwide publishing and distribution rights for thier future games.

In a sly dig at Activision, the new studio promises to position its 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," it says, adding that it's currently assembling "a world-class team of designers, artists and engineers" and applicants can submit resumes to jobs@respawn.com.

It's not yet clear if other ex-Infinity Ward employees, including lead designer, Todd Alderman and lead software engineer, Francesco Gigliotti, will be joining Respawn.

"Respawn Entertainment marks a fresh start for Jason and me," said Vince Zampella, who'll act as general manager.

"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."

West added: "We're excited. 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 two Infinity Ward founders were fired and removed from the Infinity Ward premises earlier this year after Activision security "stormed the offices".

Soon after the pair launched a lawsuit against their former employer for US$36 million and control over the Modern Warfare franchise.

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