An unnamed Activision employee has voiced his discontent with the company's marketing unit interference with the development process in an unimaginative way that hampers creativity.
The source cited changing the gender of True Crime 3's hero from male to female as an example of decisions that were forced on development teams at Activision. "We were all on board, and then Activision killed it, said they don't do female characters because they don't sell," the unnamed source said after explaining that the game's protagonist was originally modeled after actress Lucie Liu and the game was not intended to be a True Crimes sequel until marketing deemed it to be so.
"Activision has no room for 'we are making an open-world game with a Hong Kong action movie feel with a female lead,' because that game doesn't exist right now," another source explained bitterly. "What they do have room for is, 'we are making an open-world game with a gangster main character who can steal cars and shoot people, but it will be in Hong Kong instead of Liberty City. And then they go, 'Hey, GTA IV sold 10 million copies, so that's what we expect from you.'"
Activision refuted the aforementioned claims and issued an official statement stressing that "Activision respects the creative vision of its development teams," and that "the company does not have a policy of telling its studios what game content they can develop, nor has the company told any of its studios that they cannot develop games with female lead characters."