Industry veteran John Smedley has been appointed to run Amazon Games’ brand new studio in San Diego - the third one in the US for the retail giant.
The EverQuest creator has run Sony Online Entertainment (then renamed Daybreak Game Company when Sony sold the company to Columbus Nova) for over 13 years. After departing in 2015, Smedley created indie studio Pixelmage, which was shut down last January after the Kickstarter campaign for The Hero’s Song failed to meet its goal.
Amazon commented in a statement: “John’s pioneering work helped define the modern MMO, and his influence can be felt in thousands of games that followed. He helped create the blueprint for fusing massive game worlds with vibrant player communities, a vision that we share at Amazon Game Studios. That’s why we’re excited to announce that John has joined Amazon Games Studios to lead an all-new team in San Diego.
“His team is already hard at work on an ambitious new project that taps into the power of the AWS Cloud and Twitch to connect players around the globe in a thrilling new game world.
“From the high-fantasy role playing of EverQuest, to the intense FPS action of Planetside, and the brutal survival sandbox of H1Z1, John is no stranger to bucking trends and creating unforgettable games. It’s early days, but we can’t wait to see what John and his team create, and share it with you.”