Xbox helped celebrate International World Indigenous Peoples Day this August touching personal stories on the influence of indigenous gamer representation, the increased representation in games like Minecraft and Age of Empires, the showcase of gorgeous custom Xbox controllers designed by Mexico’s indigenous artisans, and the support of the Gerald A. Lawson Fund for Black and Indigenous Students in the # 1 game design program in North America.
As the United States celebrates Native American Heritage Month in November, we’ve partnered with Microsoft’s indigenous community to highlight games, movies, and television inspired by indigenous creators, culture, and protagonists around the world on Xbox and Windows became. This is part of our ongoing work to create more inclusive gaming ecosystems and improve content that resonates with communities while increasing awareness of their unique perspectives and artistry.
View collections in the Microsoft Store on Xbox and the Microsoft Store on Windows in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Visitors can find indigenous community picks at any time by searching for “indigenous” and related terms in the stores. Content is subject to availability by country.
Discover games curated by indigenous communities at Microsoft
Never alone – Native Alaskan storytellers helped develop this game based on the traditional lore of Iñupiat. Never alone shows an Iñupiaq girl named Nuna and her arctic fox companion. Players experience the narrative through a series of atmospheric puzzles that symbolize the intergenerational transmission of wisdom through the gathering of “cultural insights” in the harsh arctic environment. Learn more about how the game came about here
City button – This cute game was created by Shandiin Yazzie Woodward, an artist who identifies as Diné. City button focuses on the true power of friendship and the importance of community building. Subliminal Games aims to raise diverse and marginalized voices within games and is in indigenous ownership.
Whitewash – Whitewash takes its name from a spirit of the forest in Peruvian legend and an indigenous expression that means “fear”. Team up with your friends or play alone in this charming hand-drawn action game with villainous elements. Choose from five unique characters and restore peace to the Amazon rainforest.
Raji: An ancient epic – Play as Raji, a young girl who searches for her brother during a war between gods and demons. This unique game set in ancient India is inspired by Hindu and Balinese mythology.
Windbound – Uncover the secrets of the Forbidden Islands as you find your way home to your tribe as a warrior named Kara in a Polynesian-inspired setting after a shipwreck.
map – Drawing on longstanding indigenous mapping practices and inspired by multiple tribal cultures, Carto must map the world around her in order to be reunited with her grandma as she traverses new lands.
Mulaka – In the midst of the breathtaking landscapes of Mexico, Mulaka is based on the rich indigenous culture of the Tarahumara. The player embarks on a journey as Sukurúame (a Tarahumara shaman), solving puzzles in environments that are inspired by real locations, and taking part in battles against creatures from the Tarahumara mythology.
Lovers in a dangerous space-time – This fun couch co-op adventure for one to four players was developed in collaboration with indigenous game developer Jamie Tucker. Players control a spaceship with a variety of stations to navigate levels and boss fights.
Aritana and the harpy feather and Aritana and the twin masks – Developed by Duaik in Brazil, these games bring the beautiful mythology of indigenous Brazilian culture and folklore to life through tropical forests, underground caves and beautiful mountains.
tell me why – This game is set in rural Alaska and features indigenous characters. The development team worked closely with local tribes and the Huna Heritage Foundation to represent the Tlingit culture. This game features strong LGBTQIA + themes and a prominent intersectional display.
Experience films and TV shows curated by indigenous communities at Microsoft
“Smoke signals“- This was the first full-length film that was written, directed, produced, and starred in by Native American leading actors. The story follows two friends, Victor and Thomas, from the Coeur D’Alene Reservation, who travel to Phoenix, Arizona to collect the ashes of Victor’s father. The film explores identity and complicated family relationships.
“The legend of Korra”- It is not often that we see a strong, complex, and bisexual indigenous woman at the helm of a major animated series. Korra is an avatar, master of the four elements from the Southern Water Tribe, which is based on indigenous arctic cultures. The show touches on deep issues of spirituality and mental health, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. Korra is also a playable character in the recently released Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl.
“Moana”- This family-friendly film celebrates oceanic cultures with a leading role from Hawaii and a Samoan supporting actor. Not only does the film take inspiration from Polynesian mythology, but it also features strong women and a powerful soundtrack that includes Samoan, Tuvaluan and Tokelaui languages in song lyrics.
“Smart man”- Creator Ryan Griffen wanted to create an Australian Aboriginal superhero for his son and he did it! This supernatural thriller draws heavily on the mythology of the indigenous Australians known as Dreamtime.
“Rhymes for young ghouls”- Written and directed by Jeff Barnaby, who identifies as Mi’kmaq, this film touches the story of abuse of First Nations children within the Canadian boarding school system from a teenage girl’s perspective.
“Whale rider“- An unforgettable portrayal of Māori culture and history, Whale Rider follows the struggles of a young girl named Paikea to fulfill her destiny in the shadow of her late twin brother. Pai is named after an ancient ancestor who rode a whale.
We work hard and are committed to improving the experiences of underrepresented communities and increasing the representation of different YouTubers and content in our ecosystems. Stay tuned for more exciting updates over the coming months as we continue to gain momentum!