Mike Richardson, the owner of several comic book shops in the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area, began to publish in 1986 with an anthology series called Dark Horse Presents, investing profits from his stores into Dark Horse Comics. The publisher is based in Milwaukie, Oregon.
Dark Horse publishes many licensed comics, including comics based on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Aliens. Dark Horse also publishes creator-owned comics such as Mike Mignola's Hellboy, Stan Sakai's Usagi Yojimbo, and Michael Chabon's The Escapist. Dark Horse has published several other well-known titles such as Star Wars and Frank Miller's Sin City. From 1993-1996, Dark Horse published a line of superhero comics under the Comics Greatest World imprint, which was later re-named Dark Horse Heroes. After 1996, publication in this line came to a near halt, ceasing production of any books concerning the characters with the publication of the last crossover books involving Ghost, in the early 2000's. Today, the comic arm of the company flourishes despite no longer having their own universe of superpowered characters.