Activision has accused EA of asking Vince Zampella to delay the release of the Modern Warfare 2 Stimulus Package in order to maximise sales of rival FPS Battlefield: Bad Company 2, naming the rival publisher as a co-defendant in the ongoing Zampella/West case. The claim is part of the ongoing suit between Activision and Vince Zampella and Jason West, centred around alleged impropriety during the dismissal of the ex-Infinity Ward bosses by Activision, and their subsequent formation of Respawn entertainment, a studio which EA has signed up to a publishing deal. In this latest twist, Activision has submitted mails to the court which it claims show evidence of a direct collaboration between EA executives and Zampella, resulting in a delay to the release of the Stimulus Package until after Bad Company 2 was on shop shelves. Zampella and West had previously tried to block Activision's efforts to involve EA in the case, claiming the delays were damaging their livelihoods. The court documents, as obtained by Gamasutra, feature a message from Lincoln Hershberger, EA's senior director of global marketing, to EA executives Jeff Karp, Sean Decker, Patrick Soderlund and Frank Gibeau. Also copied in to the mail was Battlefield executive producer, Karl-Magnuss Troedsson. "A couple months ago, I asked Vince to hold back their map pack until after we launched (he owes me one). Given that they've already made a billion, he was cool with that, obviously Kotick took it as being belligerent," the mail allegedly reads. Bad Company 2 was released on 2 March, 2010 and the Stimulus Package was available for download on 30 March. The news of Zampella and West's sacking was made public on 3 March, the day that the mail was apparently sent. EA maintains that the exchange was merely a light-hearted joke, and does not indicate any wrongdoing. In a statement to press, EA's Jeff Brown accused Activision of reading too much into it. "This was obviously sarcasm," Brown told Gamasutra. "It's clear from the email this was a joke and they never spoke. We explained this to lawyers at Activision - who apparently don't have much of a sense of humor." Activision's lawyers are certainly focusing on the serious side. The cross complaint is part of a $400 million lawsuit which accuses EA of "unlawful conduct" at "the highest levels", claiming that "to interfere with Activision's contracts by extricating West and Zampella and gutting Infinity Ward, Electronic Arts worked to subvert the Call of Duty franchise from the inside out." The case continues.[/p] So apparently, a letter was sent out as a joke by EA about holding back the Modern Warfare 2 Map Pack. Activision have of course gotten ahold of this and now putting it out to courts. If it is true, then I suppose Acitivision have a right to do what they're doing but if not then it's just them grasping at whatever opportunity they can to get something fresh into their lawsuit. I just don't know.