Darker Hue Studios

Scoring a critical hit for diversity by creating a more inclusive world of geekdom one game at a time.

Darker Hue Studios is an independent company aimed at increasing the level of diversity in gaming and geekdom through building community, developing new material, and promoting inclusion within the existing gaming industry.

Fear and Reality

I am afraid. 

Another police "incident" occurred today, after the one from yesterday, and after the now-countless others. 

I am afraid to step out of my door, to think that I may never see my family, to think of Zora growing up without a father, or to think of Jill living without a husband. 

I am afraid this epidemic of systemic violence and executions won't stop and will continue to go unpunished. That each death is "justified." 

I am afraid that in a couple of days people will forgot these two men were killed in cold blood by those sworn to protect them. 

I am afraid that the world, that we are not doing enough to try to change this. We accept it as a daily part of our lives and move on. We watch those who protest get dismissed as rioters and criminals when they are really people of color trying to promote civil rights. When the people who are standing up for our community are disregarded, how do we stand up and be heard?

I am afraid for my child growing up in this world.

A Mission In Action

My mission (and I chose to accept it) is to bring more diversity into gaming. That has been my goal in establishing Darker Hue Studios and I have been flying the ship while building it because it is a lofty task with no real benchmarkers about how to do it. I just know that it needs to be done and has been needed for a long time. By actively working toward this goal, I've had the opportunity to meet other people who are also dedicated to the cause. It's awesome to find a community where I thought I was the unicorn.

Last weekend, I had a chance to talk to Katrina Stovold about why I am doing this. She asked some great questions and I got to talk about some of my experiences. Then she asked about my mission statement; I've written what I want to do, but not how I plan to do it. She's right.

Honestly, I want to do it in any way possible. Going everywhere to run games, writing games, publishing games, working at Con . . . ruling the world with an iron fist. 

But I realize I need to focus. My plan is to create as much diverse, quality material as I can freelancing for other companies. And I want to create a more inclusive world by giving away stuff on the website and Darker Hue original published stuff.

I've written A LOT this year, mostly for other publishers. But now, it is time to do something on my own. I am working with Nino Malong (our talented Chief Artist Officer) to launch a project up on Kickstarter or GoFundMe in the fall. I can't say what it is right now, just that I am WOKE! FOCUSED! And ready.

The Rebel Angel | My Tribute to Prince

by Nino Malong, DHS Chief Artist Officer

I received word last Thursday that Prince had died. I refused to believe it. To say that this affects me immensely is an understatement. In my grief I wanted to find a way to honor the man that had the most profound influence in my journey as an artist. If it were not for him, I don't know if I would have been the artist that I am now. He taught me to be fearless in my art and to hold myself and my art to a high standard. Once a piece is done, I move on to the next one. It is bittersweet but I hear the next one calling. 

So it went with the piece I called, "Habibi, the Rebel Angel." That was the name of his iconic guitar. I thought if I could capture the spirit of Prince and Habibi together, what would that look like to me? Beautiful with a hint of rebellion and recklessness. 

Prince and Habibi

Prince and Habibi

It's one of those pieces where it was a joy to work on, but I had to stop at times because the pain of loss was too much. A good friend of mine (and a hell of a songwriter), Jason Michael Greene, said to just let it go and see what happens. I started and only stopped when the painting itself said it was time. So I gave it to the world. Saying goodbye in the best way I can. Thank you Prince. I'll stop now and let the art speak for itself.

I think he would've agreed.

Nino has submitted this work for inclusion in Heavy Metal Magazine. VOTE FOR NINO.

© Chris Spivey and Darker Hue Studios, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chris Spivey and Darker Hue Studios with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.