Sledgehammer Games ditched development on its third-person action adventure Call of Duty game to work on Modern Warfare 3 because it was too good an opportunity to miss.
Sledgehammer, co-founded by ex-Dead Space chief Glen Schofield, and Michael Condrey in 2009, was conceived to make a new game in the COD franchise, but the pull of Modern Warfare 3 proved too great.
"The opportunity to work on the biggest thing in the industry with Infinity Ward, that's demonstrated that they know how to do exceptional software, was just an opportunity we couldn't [miss]," Condrey told GameSpot.
"There's a lot of people on the team who have worked on Call of Duty before, who have worked on first-person shooters before, so there's a lot of built-in knowledge about the first-person shooter genre and a lot of passionate gamers. Some guys on the floor are tenth level prestige in Black Ops.
"So it was a nice marriage of experience in the genre and kind of fan desire to work on this franchise."
Schofield said development on Sledgehammer's COD game ran to six months, but didn't make it out of the prototype stage.
"We came on board to make a third person action adventure game, in the Call of Duty franchise, and we were working on it about six months," he said.
"We had a prototype together that was pretty compelling, and it looked really good," Condrey added.
Sledgehammer's COD spin-off was officially shelved in June, but publisher Activision has said it could still see release.
Publishing chief Eric Hirshberg said the project hadn't been forgotten. "They were originally working on an extension of the Call of Duty franchise into an action/adventure genre and that's a game I still want to play," he explained.
"That's a supreme, incredible group doing that. All I can say is right now they're 100% focused on Modern Warfare 3."