John Smedley co-founded EverQuest developer Verant Interactive, which morphed into Sony Online Entertainment following EverQuest's huge success. He even hung on after Sony sold SOE earlier this year, turning it into Daybreak Game Company and laying off some SOE employees.
Smedley, however, has now stepped down as president and chief executive officer of Daybreak.
"I can confirm that John Smedley will be taking some time off from the company for the near-term and transitioning to a different role to be determined," a spokesperson for Daybreak told GamesBeat. "Upon finalization of his plans, further communication will be provided."
Chief creative operating officer Russell Shanks will take over for Smedley.