January 11, 2023

After a Six Year Struggle, the Co-Founder of one of the oldest MMOs is leaving Amazon Games Studios

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After a Six Year Struggle, the Co-Founder of one of the oldest MMOs is leaving Amazon Games Studios

By Nick | January 11, 2023

John Smedley, the head of Amazon Games San Diego and co-founder of Everquest MMO, has announced his parting from the on-line retail giant.

After a Six Year Struggle, the Co-Founder of one of the oldest MMOs is leaving Amazon Games Studios

Smedley announced in an email to staff published by Bloomberg News that after much thought, he has decided it is time to try something new. He has yet to reveal what his next endeavor will be but experts predict he will land a senior position with another top gaming publisher.

Smedley joined Amazon Games in 2017 and had a hand in several projects at Amazon Games, but none of them were released during his six-year tenure with the company.

Smedley, co-created EverQuest, one of the world's oldest MMOs, and worked on games such as Star Wars Galaxies, Planetside, Free Realms, and H1Z1 during his 13-year stint as president of Sony Online Entertainment (later renamed Daybreak Game Company) from 2002 to 2015.

Before that, he was CEO of Pixelmage Games. Smedley's departure isn't the first for Amazon as Michael Frazzini, the long-serving boss of Amazon Games, also left the company in 2021.

Frazzini had helped to build Amazon's gaming division into a competitive gaming division but struggled to find success due to staff turnover and internal departmental conflicts.


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