Since the 1920s, Harlem has had a reputation for producing some of the world’s greatest artistic works. The Harlem Renaissance, which spanned the 1920s and 1930s, started this movement by spotlighting African American literature, art, music, and theatre. As per history.com, some of the most notable authors from this period include Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, whose novel Their Eyes Were Watching God is considered a literary classic. Today, the Harlem neighborhood continues to celebrate African American achievements in theatre, art, and music. We are also seeing this celebration in the gaming industry as Harlem’s annual Game Devs of Color Expo returns in September for the seventh time.
The 2022 Game Devs of Color Expo
For the last seven years, the Game Devs of Color Expo has celebrated the creative power of people of color in the gaming industry. The annual event will return on September 15-18, 2022, at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem and it will feature world-class speakers from across the globe, exclusive announcements about upcoming games, and networking sessions with industry professionals. Notable figures who have attended the event in Harlem in the past include video game composer Chase Bethea. Bethea has worked on several soundtracks for popular indie video games, such as Deity Quest (2015), a Pokemon-inspired role-playing game.
Game Devs of Color Expo is excited to announce that submissions for speakers & games are now open for the GDoCExpo 2022.
Don’t miss the opportunity to share your work on an online global stage!
— Game Devs of Color Expo (@GDoCExpo) March 30, 2022
The Power Of Gaming In New York
Harlem’s Game Devs of Color Expo is just one aspect of New York’s thriving video game industry. The city has been featured in many games, including Driver: Parallel Lines and Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater I and II. The video game franchises for Spider-Man and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are also set in New York.
Likewise, New York is home to one of the most popular eSports teams in the United States, the New York Excelsior (NYXL). The Excelsior competes in the Overwatch League, a professional eSports league for the multiplayer first-person shooter video game Overwatch. In May, according to overwatchleague.com, the New York Excelsior will face off against the Los Angeles Gladiators and the Atlanta Reign in league gameplay.
According to Blizzard Entertainment, Overwatch accumulated over $1 billion in revenue during its first year. An Overwatch 2 PVP beta was released this year as Blizzard prepares for its eventual release. Players can read all about the Overwatch 2 beta on gaming and eSports platforms like win.gg, including how to get access via a Twitch drop.
New York’s presence in the video game industry is vast, whether the city is used as a primary location setting or it is where creatives in the industry are celebrated for their work and achievements at annual events such as the Game Devs of Color Expo. This ability to celebrate other people’s work, especially those of color, is one of the great things about this exposition in Harlem. It’s also why it is one of the many must-attend events in New York in 2022.