Xbox Reveals Black History Month Celebration Plans

Xbox will celebrate Black History Month by spotlighting Black and African American developers and creators for the entire month of February.

The company announced their plans in a blog post, where content developer and social lead Albert Dankwa said Xbox would be “celebrating gaming as a source of joy, connection, and self-care for many in the community.”

The company has been celebrating Black History Since 2020, highlighting Black industry professionals and their contributions to the gaming industry.

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Dankwa said he relates to finding joy through games: “I have fond memories of summer afternoons spent at a friend’s home playing Halo and later enjoying Gears of War on my own first Xbox. was fascinated by the narratives, drawn to the worlds, and inspired by the heroes and the hope they represented. As a lifelong gamer, it’s important to me to help inspire and uplift others to join the industry or to simply share their love of gaming.”

Microsoft Reward members in the U.S. can earn and donate points to organizations supporting Black communities with Xbox, such as Cxmmunity, Black Girls Rock!, and Gameheads. Meanwhile, Halo will be adding a special emblem and nameplate, and Forza Horizon 5 will be hosting an in-game livery contest. Xbox itself is adding a new Gamerpic, profile theme, and avatar items for the occasion.

In an effort to build diversity within the games industry, Xbox Game Studios’ Game Camp is returning to New Orleans from March 9 to April 7 with the goal of providing people from underrepresented communities with access to experts, tools, and industry connections to aid them through the game creation process.

Xbox is also partnering with Historically Black College and Universities (HBCU) Connect to present a panel featuring Xbox employees from HBCU Connect schools, sharing their journeys into the games industry.

A special feature called “The New Face of Gaming” will also be shown at the Games Developers Conference in March, highlighting a diverse group of Xbox developers. The panelists will share their experiences in gaming and explore how diverse voices are contributing to the industry’s evolution.

Xbox Plays will feature Black streamers, game creators, and nonprofits

Xbox Plays will feature Black streamers, game creators, and nonprofits

Finally, Xbox will be spotlighting Xbox Ambassadors’ stories and celebrating Black History Month on its Twitch channel with a number of stream takeovers.

Among game developers, Xbox has often been at the forefront of issues of accessibility and diversity. Back in 2020, Xbox CEO Phil Spencer called for more diverse leaders in games, reiterating Microsoft’s commitment to the issue. As Black History Month gets underway, Xbox appears set on showing that these comments are more than just words.

Ryan Dinsdale is an IGN freelancer who occasionally remembers to tweet @thelastdinsdale.

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