Black History Month is a celebration. It’s a time to celebrate Black achievements and the central role of Black people in US history. It’s a time to pause and reflect on the rich, vibrant legacy of the Black community. It’s a time to appreciate the contributions of Black people, both past and present, who have presented the Black experience to the world and created space for the future of Black creativity.
Riot Noir, our Employee Resource Group made up of Black Rioters, put on a range of events including stories from the Black community, celebrations of Black culture, and important discussions about the Black experience in gaming.
How We Celebrated
For the Culture: Stories of Creativity from the Black Community
We hosted a panel exploring the unique stories of trailblazing Black creators who are forging spaces for creative expressions of Black experiences. On the panel was Alton Glass, the Co-Founder of GRX Immersive Labs, a creative technology studio specializing in multi-platform media including VR and AR technologies. He was joined by Jasmine “CutiePieSensei” James, an internationally recognized cosplay and concept artist, and Manuel Godoy, CEO and Founder of Black Sands Entertainment, a publishing company that creates books and animation inspired by African mythology.
Game Dev While Black
Co-sponsored by Valence, this hour-long panel brought on Black game developers and content creators from around the country. They shared tips, cheat codes, and battle stories on how to thrive as a Black person in the gaming industry.
You can’t celebrate Black History Month without a tribute to Black culinary ingenuity. Drawing influence from across the African Diaspora and infused with the flavors of the global Black experience, this cuisine intrigued taste buds and satisfied souls. Created by NOMs, our on-campus cafeteria staff, two unique menus cultivated by Riot Noir shared the rich tradition of Black food with Rioters.
Rioters React: What Does it Mean to Be a Black Creator
Over the course of the month, Black Rioters shared their stories about what it means to be a Black creator at Riot, and in gaming at large. Across a series of videos, Black Rioters, ranging from social media managers to software engineers to marketing directors, talked about the opportunity and empowerment that comes with being a Black creator. Riot Noir and the rest of our Black Rioters provide an important perspective across our games to deliver authentic experiences to our players.
Riot Noir also curated a Spotify playlist featuring a wide variety of Black artists encapsulating various generations, influences, and cultural moments.
Beyond Black History Month
Riot Noir is committed to amplifying Black voices and increasing representation at Riot and across the industry. Their impact is made through fostering professional development, increasing community partnerships, and encouraging interaction and relationship building across Riot. They partner with teams across the company on how to best express Black characters like Phoenix and Senna, connect with Black leaders in entertainment, and support current and upcoming Black professionals in games and tech.
We’ll continue to learn how we can support the future of inclusive gaming and entertainment through the lens of Black industry leaders. We’ll also continue to celebrate the achievements and ambitions of Black professionals in gaming and entertainment, especially the entrepreneurs and trail-blazers who inspire all Rioters.
We’re proud to support our communities and ERGs like Riot Noir so they can directly contribute to diversity and inclusion efforts at Riot and enact change in the industry as a whole.