We recently spoke with Activision's Eric Hirshberg about the company's desire to create quality experiences that fans would enjoy. We asked about how consumer feedback may have influenced certain titles over the years, and what we learned is that fan reaction led to the creation of Call of Duty's hugely popular Zombies multiplayer mode.
It was something that was an Easter egg in one of Treyarch's games and it just caught fire. It's not something we necessarily designed with the foresight that it would turn out exactly how it has. We sort of followed the heat to a certain extent and then decided to invest more in it. But that's an example of the community having a lot of impact on our creative process.
According to Hirshberg, consumer feedback plays a major role in game development due to the nature of the medium. He stated that there's a steadier flow of feedback than what is found in movies or other forms of entertainment. The various development teams working under Activision are constantly aware of what people are saying about a product, and what they are actually doing.
Sometimes those two things aren't the same. I think it's good to listen to the opinions there and it's also good to watch behavior.
Of course, Call of Duty fans have been asking for more insane action and Activision is happy to oblige. Infinity Ward's Ghosts will feature an all new Extinction mode that pits players against aliens rather than hordes of the undead.