Activision responds to EA Call of Duty trash talk

Gamescom 2011: Publisher CEO Eric Hirshberg calls rhetoric "bad for the industry," says game makers should be supporting each other instead.


With Battlefield 3, Electronic Arts wants to take down Activision's Call of Duty franchise, and it hasn't been shy about admitting as much. However, in opening statements at this year's Gamescom in Cologne, Germany, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg suggested that such rabble-rousing ultimately serves no one.

Hirshberg would like to keep the fighting confined to his games.
Hirshberg would like to keep the fighting confined to his games.

As reported by Eurogamer, Hirshberg said competition was a good thing. However, he added that public statements hoping for a rival's game to fail crosses a line.

"Recently a competitor of ours was quoted as saying that he wants to see Call of Duty 'rot from the core,'" Hirshberg said. "I've been asked countless times to respond to this comment, and I've generally chosen not to. My job is to help our incredibly talented, passionate teams to make the best games they can, not to throw insults around at others. But I actually feel this kind of rhetoric is bad for our industry."

Hirshberg went on to say that publishers should be supportive of each other, because a great game will always sell because it's great, not because it steals sales from the competition. He said that was the mind-set of politics, which necessitates that one side lose if another side is to win.

"We shouldn't be tearing each other apart fighting for a bigger piece of the pie," Hirshberg said. "We should all be focused on trying to grow a bigger pie. If we as an industry act like there's a finite number of games in the world, then there will be."

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Avatar image for XBLACKXVIPERX

thats true it is a businnes i know and its competition but being respectful to each others work makes a person the better one then again it makes you think ..if COD wouldnt be as popular as it is now would they still say tht :)?

Avatar image for GameReviewGuru

Going away from the normal BF fanboys.... This just shows how the Call of Duty developers are superior to their weaker competition. Unlike BF fanboys, Call of Duty doesn't need to insult, inflame, or tear apart their competitors. Call of Duty is just a great series, which is why it still has more pre orders than BF.

Avatar image for AlabamaFan92

Battlefield > Cod. Don't think that has changed or will change...especially with the Modern Warfare 2 DLC pack(some refer to it as Modern Warfare 3) coming :)

Avatar image for RitsukoEX

@BoneyHead95 for people who can't buy pie! :D

Avatar image for BoneyHead95

@RitsukoEX Chocolate Cake better. :D

Avatar image for darckdeth

whats he chalking Cod been dead since COD 4 the rest just been copy and paste geez guess EA didnt play MW2 or Black Ops, nor watch any of the MW3 game play videos they then would see COD is in fact already rotted and withered. Its just waiting for the BF3 wind to blow the ashes away :D

Avatar image for Llama345

I have played CoD for the passed few installments, but I might switch the BF for this one. I read what each had to say about their product but this isn't like politics where you dont know what youll get until you fully buy into one. There will be plenty of reviews for those on the fence.

Avatar image for tonysoprano93

i would actually be more inclined to get MW3 if survival mode, instead of 2, u can roll in with a full party (6 people). that would kick so much ass but the idea of survival mode is fun, but not really creative to me. i dont blame Sledgehammer for trying but Activision was the first start the BF3 vs MW3 rivalry. i think the whole war is stupid. MW3 is gonna be fun but im not gonna pick it up for about a year because I KNOW, im not gonna miss anything important. just a opinion. Still, Spec Ops still looks fun.

Avatar image for MEDzZ3RO

@epic40k Agreed. I'm looking forward to the new Counterstrike a lot more then both MW3 and BF3. Call Of Duty owes a lot to Counterstrike.

Avatar image for NightFox313

Hey Activision, if you want COD to win so much, why don't you start selling them in local fish markets?!

Avatar image for cp198108a

Reading this makes me realy start thinking, i,m used to the daily comments of people here about whats the better console or how COD is better then BF. Now game companies doing the same about their games, this def not going to help realy. To be honest all this verbal virtual word trowing at who,s likes what better is getting realy on my nerves and its also getting boring! If one likes his PS3 or Xbox360 fine thats good, and if your a huge fan of COD thats fine to, if you prefer BF thats fine aswell, but please do everybody a favour stop posting hatred comments about people who likes something else. This whole thing isn,t going better if we keep this up you know. Besides why its not possible to enjoy both games? Or just buy the one you like best when it comes out and just enjoy it and thats it. Fighting over these things is just silly and to me a waste of time realy just do or play what you all like best end of story.

Avatar image for tre802001

One of the things that get me is if you don't play or buy CoD then why do you care if it will be 25 games in the series. Battlefield 3 is a different game and will have their followers. I don't play either game but I'm sure glad somebody is enjoying it.

Avatar image for Ultramarinus

Man, the headlines made me think this was to be another Kotick rage-rousing non-sense. My popcorn and I'm disappointed at the common sense involved with actual statement of this guy. :(

Avatar image for Richardthe3rd

It's funny that he's talking about growing a bigger pie when Activision's been selling the same pie for the last 4 years.

Avatar image for cbb1018

to tell you the truth i think both are going to be good games and everyone has their own opinion so really there wont be a winner between these two games its just a stupid arguement

Avatar image for bramterris

where's the love for games like Rage, Uncharted 3, Gears 3 and perhaps even resistance 3. everyones always talking about mw3, bf3, or just how badly skyrim is going to beat the both of them, but people are forgetting that their are way more games coming out that look not only just as good, but even better then mw3 and bf3, and maybe on par to skyrim

Avatar image for Gelugon_baat

@LtReviews [quote="You"]EA does not own DICE.[/quote]

I know that you were arguing with someone about the relationship between a developer and a publisher, but << LINK REMOVED >>. :?

Avatar image for Ntalikeris666

MW3: Another reheated piece of the same PIE that we had in the previous 4 years, served with a "Fresh" label stuck on it.

Avatar image for DrKill09

"My job is to help our incredibly talented, passionate teams to make the best games they can" firing the head of the developer, and half the staff when they deliver their game on time? :P Yep, you guys sure do care about your developers. :roll:

Avatar image for Catalyst222

Lol you can't tell who is fanboys of what at all in these comments...

Avatar image for epic40k

Counter Strike Global Operations will win in the end for me anyway... who cares I've had enough of this crap.. bring back Office 24/7 please valve and I will pay you gladly. no tanks, no space, no zombies just well placed grenades and p90 rushes!

Avatar image for jasonzilla11

@captain_hitec And it's gonna keep growing! Bad Company 2 had a ton of DLC (7 map packs, Vietnam pack, onslaught, SPECACT). That's 10 DLC pack things. 10 x 10. Holy crap.

Avatar image for olemissman19

Did you know... When the Bible talks of jesus christ's 2nd coming too save us all from the end... it is referring too BF3.The Anti-christ is Activision, and The release of CoD will lead too the end of all things in 2012... God Bless You My Savior Battlefield 3.

Avatar image for gellis1981

KerrinScott Posted Aug 19, 2011 12:04 am ET "It's NEVER going to capture CoD's audience unless it BECOMES a reflection of CoD or finds a way to IMPROVE CoD's model. DICE can make the best Battlefield game in history and one of the finest games ever and it will STILL be irrelevant." There just two different types of FPS'ers....your ridulous statement, "It's NEVER going to capture CoD's audience unless it BECOMES a reflection of CoD or finds a way to IMPROVE CoD's model." Jesus man have you been under a rock? The BF series is one the best, if not the best FPS since 2001 with BF1942, Revolutionized FPS completely and BF2 is still relivant 5 years after its release. Its sounds like to me that mainly game on a console. Anyone who's been gaming on a PC since 2000,who plays FPS clearly knows who's the better franchise. Unfortunately for console gamers they were left out with the "REAL" Battlefield series in years past. If COD wasnt such a cash cow and not keep pushing the same game out every year...while having mindless sheep shellin $60 every year for the same game...maybe they would have already revamped their title as well and maybe they would be saving face right now, but I'm afraid its going to comeback and bite them on the arse. They will still sell alot of copies because 10 year olds dont really know gaming and people are usually scared of change. But mark it down! The King is Back! So hide yo Kids ,Hide yo wife..because BF3 is goin to r@ping everyone up in Activison.

Avatar image for pierrey22

@zaiwen woooo calm down fan boy, both games are awsem, but i think BF3 was the hand this year, oh and DICE have said, and officially not a throw away comment, they said something along the lines of, we are making a game that is what we want to be, we are not trying to make it like call of duty, as we have vehicles, so this game is nothing like the call of duty series or other first person shooters. so EA are like, were will hate on you activition, cause both publishers are annoying bas&*(ds the devs are the good guys :) i do like both games, but BF3 has the hand this year, so EA are trying to shoot down the CoD series, hang on, hate EA and Activition, for being arses about 2 amazing games

Avatar image for Cobretti1818

Way to take the high ground Activision.

Avatar image for MoreThot

hmmm I cant believe I'm saying this about EA, I really like DICE, but I'm behind EA 100% on this one.. They are basically saying that call of duty is trash now and I completely agree, they haven't brought anything new to the table since the first modern warfare, I will give it to them that their first couple of call of duties from 2002 up to and including modern warfare 1 were pretty good FPS games, some really good with a few hiccups. But ever since they did massive marketing and introduced their noob helpers known as kill streaks its gone down hill.. I'm old school FPS and killstreak rewards aren't good for FPS, sure its fun i wont deny that. But i prefer actually shooting someone with my gun, using cover/tactics instead of getting a SR71 so i can see everyone on the map... uhhh legalized wallhacking right there. or how about a Harrier strike.. Its just not the same satisfaction killing someone with your own gun and skill. Having said that I strongly believe that Battlefield will be very very strong in sales as opposed to call of duty, granted people will still buy COD when they bought bf3 but who cares. BF3 will be the better game by far. Call of Duty had its glory days as shooter of the year, game of the year and many other awards. But they are not worthy of holding those titles anymore for the effort they put into their games now. It's time to let it go Activision.

Avatar image for cephas90

I like how EA is calling Activision "rotten to the core" yet is employing even WORSE money grubbing tactics then CoD by making certain weapons and weapon attachments PRE ORDER EXCLUSIVE! THAT MEANS IF YOU BUY IT THE DAY OF BUT DID NOT PRE ORDER YOU WILL NOT GET CERTAIN AMMO AND GUNS. In a multiplayer world where balance is sacred, this is flat out heresy, and my love for Battlefield isn't strong enough to support this absolute corruption of video game sales. I'm not buying this game unless things changes, and here's a link to the BF3 boycott if you're also disgusted. In it are links to Kotaku, PC Gamer, and Forbes articles and more giving press to the boycott. << LINK REMOVED >>

Avatar image for RitsukoEX

@BoneyHead95 PIE is awesome too!!!

Avatar image for Sigil-otaku

All the call of duty fans can complain as much as they want but it's just a stale, bad franchise. I play plenty of FPS and see improvements each game, such as Halo which adds new features like replays before any other console FPS, it added Forge mode, it tried a new thing with the space flight mission, it added skulls, firefight, equipment, armour abilities and other features whereas the only think I can remember COD ever adding was that betting feature. You look at other FPS like Crysis 2 and I see an attempt to add some cool powers and easy on the fly weapon customisation to the fray, I look at BF3 and I at least see a huge push toward the best tech we've seen in a while, I look at Killzone and there's not much new but the cover mechanic in an FPS but at least it's something. Other FPS seem to do things and try new ways of being better whereas COD is just never doing anything and comes out every year to an audience that simply laps it up. I don't get it, I don't think I have to as they simply like the game and that's good for them but why can't some of these 20 million just grow some respect for the industry and admiration for better developers and simply move to these better games.

Avatar image for jonnybutler11

wow, koodos to activision for the professional reply. That said, I REALLY want mw3 to fail.

Avatar image for BoneyHead95

MW3: PIE BF3:Chocolate Cake PS. If you don't know BF3 way better! :D

Avatar image for judahstarguy

The man came out looking like class compared to the EA greed machine.

Avatar image for Taffelost

I kind of understand why EA wants CoD to fail. It's bad for the industry that someone doesn't have to improve or innovate old series while at the same time be able to sell 20million copies. I understand Activision too though. If I could give out yearly "updates" to an ancient product and sell 20 million copies each time I would be doing the same. I would however expect people to complain while doing it, but it wouldn't bother me as I was laughing all the way to the bank. It's our own fault not Activisions that they're rehashing their old manure every year like they do. If we stopped buying their filth they would get off their butts and starting to develop proper innovative games again. With that said I've only ever bought one CoD game and never again. I have already pre-ordered BF3 though.

Avatar image for FusionRain

"because a great game will always sell because it's great, not because it steals sales from the competition." That right there is the smartest thing to ever come from anyone at Activision and it's completely true. You guys that want these two to go at it but like this guy said "I actually feel this kind of rhetoric is bad for our industry." It's silly and may the best game win, which isn't gonna be MW3 or BF3, it's gonna be Skyrim. lol

Avatar image for N07H1NG

I hope also the Call of Duty franchise rots from it's core. They spit out the same recycled stuff every year and shove it in a new case with a new name. And sadly, the average consumer actually falls for it! Anyone with a brain in their head will be buying Battlefield 3 this year. Anyone who's brainwashed by marketing and will buy whatever's popular will be buying Call of Duty. What a mistake!

Avatar image for DaneGamer

He is right, they shouldn't waste time insulting eachother, but CoD is everything but innovative for the industry, it's making the market stale and boring. When games like Battlefield 3 has developed a new engine just to show their fans that they actually improve upon their franchise and product, i can't help but feel that the people who still goes out and buy CoD are morons - you're the reason that developers don't want to invest money in developing as much as just making a copy-paste experience. Modern Warfare 3 looks no different than Modern Warfare 1, and there's years in between - I believe that when seeing games like Crysis 2 and Battlefield 3, there's should be set a standard, and even if Activision are secure in their product (why wouldn't they be, it sells like sugar no matter what) they should still have the decency to upgrade upon several things - i remember another company linked to Activison called Blizzard, who's been seeing nothing but loss of subscriptions in WoW because of this

Avatar image for mtait01

so basically he responded with 'I am not going to respond to the comment'... what a waste of time article, it only highlights Activisions greediness of wanting to make a bigger pie

Avatar image for parkurtommo

I too wish to see the Call of Duty franchise rot from the core. We need some creativity coming from infinity ward/ Treyarch. They seem to lack it.

Avatar image for franzito


Avatar image for aleny2k

very well said. i hope he means what he said

Avatar image for singhellotaku

That might be the most hypocritical thing Ive ever heard, activision does everything it can to kill other developers and take all the pie.

Avatar image for LtReviews

@iEatToothpicks No, EA and DICE are not the same. 1) EA does not own DICE. DICE is a client for EA that is currently under contract. 2) EA is a publisher. They published Portal 2, for example. They weren't chosen as a publisher, however, until after Portal 2 was pretty much completed in development. Yet EA does not own Valve, nor where they involved in the creation of Portal 2. So no, developers and publishers are not the same thing. That is absurd.

Avatar image for dicegamer

so what ya thumb me down i try to me a point of both of my comments what i say is the facts EA which a good company needs to stop saying childish and foolish comments to activision it destroying how people love game i come from a family that show respect and show alot of class iam washing my hands on this one i got alot of thumbs down just i say a good comments which i post on aug 19 that what i will do cause i don't like people and companies who make foolish and childish comments EA should be thrill i still spending my hard earn money on there games

Avatar image for Fantazzm

I always loved BF series, and this game is going to be the game people will play for years to come. Activision really needs to come up with better engine for once, they've been pretty much abusing their customer base by not making any substantial changes to graphics engine nor gameplay, implement actual physics at last. I don't think BF3 will outsell MW3 simply because COD is very noob friendly and does make noobs feel good about themselves, no question. Last COD game I've enjoyed playing was COD4.

Avatar image for rawkfist45

i honestly havent played SP in CoD since cod1, which was released in 2003. EA is bad, but Activision has gotten worse, EA shows they want to improve in the FPS genre, which BF3 that. i would rather see CoD die, than EA, because CoD has become the same game since MW2. EA has improved over the years. so i would rather have BF3 prevail honestly.

Avatar image for olemissman19

Battlefield 1942 was better than all the MW games and that was in 2002... BF3 is on a whole other level from anything activision makes.