Infinity Ward - Developer Profile

Infinity Ward

It is pretty rare that you encounter a games developer that doesn't at least have a few different titles or series to their name, but this is definitely the case with Infinity Ward, so how are they one of the most successful games developers of modern times? Because this company is home to the team of individuals that were responsible for the original Call of Duty, as well as every successive title that followed. Bearing in mind that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare alone has sold well over 13 million copies since its release, it is difficult to criticise the developer for having such a homogenous games roster, but who cares when the roster consists of some of the best warfare games ever to exist?

Background

Infinity Ward owes some of its origins to 2015 Inc, another games development company from which the company's founders migrated. 2002 is the year that Infinity Ward came into existence, being founded by Vince Zampella and Grant Collier in addition to Jason West. If you look at the original staff at Infinity Ward, you will see that a number of them also worked on the Medal of Honor: Allied Assault project while at the 2015 Inc. There is obviously an undeniable carryover of style from MoH to Call of Duty that goes beyond the fact that they are both war games, and the origin of its staff goes a fair way to explaining this crossover.

Interestingly, fellow video games company Activision partially funded Infinity Ward for a period of time, with figures being released of it purchasing 30% of the Call of Duty developer's stock. It wasn't until 2003 that the first Call of Duty title was released, but it was met with almost universal critical acclaim from critics and soon built up a fan base that was in the millions. It was after this release that Activision then bought the rest of Infinity Ward - the potential of the game was obvious from the start.

Infinity Ward hasn't had a smooth time over the years however, in spite of its successes. 2010 saw a so-called "re-shuffling" where senior staff West and Zampella were effectively fired. The company has also been party to a number of lawsuits including West and Zampella vs. Activision, and lawsuits against EA Games as well as fired employees West and Zampella.

Games

Call of Duty: Ghosts

It may seem superfluous to talk about Infinity Ward's games since most know that it's Call of Duty through and through, from the original right the way through to its most recent title in the series, Call of Duty: Ghosts (not. However, it can sometimes be forgotten just how truly  influential a number of the titles in the series have been on the genre as well as in the gaming industry in general, particularly when it comes to setting standards for multiplayer.

The original Call of Duty simply has to be lauded for its incredible gameplay, which is based on the Quake III: Team Arena engine and concentrates on infantry-level combat during World War II. The game differs itself from Medal of Honour in a variety of ways, the main being that you get to play the campaign from a number of different perspectives, cycling through Soviet, British, and Candian soldiers. You were also accompanied by varying numbers of fellow infantrymen with whom you worked to achieve a variety of mission objectives. Call of Duty received dozens of awards from a variety of sources and garnered almost universal critical acclaim.

While Call of Duty 2 was received reasonably well and Call of Duty 3 was developed by an entirely different company (Treyarch), it was Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare that probably goes down in the book as being perhaps the greatest title of the whole series, even to this day. The aggregate score of 94% from both Metacritic and Gamerankings is a reflection of just how well received the game was by almost all that played it. The game's sequel, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was almost as well received, with some even calling for it to be remastered for next-gen consoles.

The most recent titles to come from Infinity Ward are Call of Duty: Ghosts in 2013 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 back in 2011. Though Ghosts received a relatively disappointing aggregate score of around 74%, Modern Warfare 3 earned an 84% rating of the same kind.