Electronic Arts says it made an "extensive" bid to be the publisher of Bungie's newest project, before the Halo studio finally opted to partner with Activision.
Bungie sent shockwaves across the industry when announcing a “ten-year worldwide exclusivity deal” with publishing partner Activision – a contract sealed when controversy surrounding the Infinity Ward scandal reached discomforting heights.
Though working conditions may have been a possible obstacle in the Activision-Bungie deal, EA claims it was financial disagreements which created its own stalemate with the globally renowned studio.
"We had extensive conversations with [Bungie],” EA Partners boss David DeMartini told CVG, “but [we] could never really figure out a deal that made sense for both of us.”
DeMartini put on a brave face when describing how EA lost out on an exclusivity deal with one of the most lucrative studios in the world.
“It just didn't come to fruition,” he said. “Obviously, they were able to come up with some kind of deal that made sense to Activision and made sense to Bungie and we hope they make great games. It's healthy for the industry to have big independent studios that are making great products.”
He added that Bungie would have made a great fit into the EA Partners staple – which already includes heavyweight studios such as Crytek, Valve and Epic Games.
“If you look at Bungie and the profile of the other studios who are part of the EA Partners programme, it would seem that they would have been a great fit into that programme,” DeMartini added.
Most recently, EA PArtners signed an agreement with Respawn Entertainment - a new studio headed up by the former founders of Infinity Ward. The studio was established amid an unrelenting row between Activision and the Modern Warfare studio.