Activision boss Bobby Kotick has claimed that Infinity Ward is still staffed by developers who are "amazingly capable" of making great games - whilst stating that Black Ops studio Treyarch deserves more credit for helping create IW's Modern Warfare 2.
Infinity Ward has lost over 20 staff since founders Jason West and Vince Zampella quit amid a storm of controversy in March.
The pair have since signed with EA Partners for a new title, but are still involved in legal wrangles with their former employers.
"We're in the video game business. If we can't replace 25 people, that would say something pretty disappointing about us as a company," Kotick told Joystiq.
He added: "Well there's at least 60 or 70, super-talented, amazingly capable people who are [still] there. They shouldn't have to suffer for the bad actions of a couple of guys.
"They have a great culture; they're really good independent thinkers; incredible technology base. They can get support like they did from Treyarch, from Demonware and other places."
Kotick also condemned the view that Call Of Duty: Black Ops creator Treyarch is Infinity Ward's "B-team" - and claimed that the firm's work on MW2 had gone unrecognised.
"That's an unfair view of Treyarch. You know it's not really an objective view. Treyarch contributed so significantly to the multiplayer technology that's in Modern Warfare 2 and they didn't really get the credit for that."
Treyarch's CoD: Black Ops out-performed MW2's record-breaking day one sales record earlier this week.