Monday, September 05, 2011

PAX 2011

Another year of PAX gone, and at some level I miss it, but boy did I need sleep afterwards. This year I was joined by my former intern, Scott. He definitely is more into the video game scene than I am. So last year, I did a lot of the talks. In other years, I've done more time on the exhibition floor or in the board game rooms. This year I decided to go a bit more low key and reduce the amount of time I sat in lines and also avoid the exhibition hall as it was an absolute zoo, probably because of the fake badges.

Day one, I tried to hit the keynote, but no luck. I heard it was good along with the Q&A. Instead I started out in the exhibition hall wandering aimlessly seeing anything that would catch my fancy. There was definitely a ton of cool looking games there. Seems like the biggest booths belong to the AAA games and MMOs. Does that mean that MMOs are flush with cash? Either way, it was pretty amazing. I would say that "All Orcs Must Die" is the game I was most surprised by. AssCreed:Rev looked amazing and Skyrim and Lego Harry Potter 2 and ... you get the picture. After wandering the hall, I went and stood in line for Wil Wheaton's talk. Scott decided to bail as he expected to get in later and headed back to hall. As such, Scott missed out on another great Wil talk. Heh. After than I made my way to the Wizards D&D floor. I put in a couple of dungeon delves and I was hooked. It was great fun.

Day two, I did some more D&D and exhibition hall prior to seeing Wil, Mike, Jerry, and Scott doing Aquisitions Inc with Chris Perkins after a 2 and half hour wait in line. I was super impressed by the set they had built and with Paul and Storm with their minstrel prowess. Chris built an absolutely incredible story, but Jim Darkmagic is just a ... supporting humor character and the result was that what could have been an incredibly interesting story was a little bit flat and completely filled with fey guy jokes and dick jokes. That said, the guys are still super entertaining and Wil and Scott's interplay is fun, but we needed more Jerry. We checked out Halofest which was a little disappointing. I am not sure what I was looking for but it just had this weird Museum vibe to it with way more people. Some of the content was very cool, but was just left wanting more. Afterwards, I convinced intern Scott to visit Wizard land again (I said I was hooked right?) and we were right in time for the DM challenge which is where a DM puts together a 3-4 hour adventure and we the players rated him. Kudos to the DM we had as he put together a fun story.

Day 3, I was exhausted and checked out the expo hall again but with an eye towards picking up something for Miranda as well as checking out some of the weird and less well traveled. I did a little more D&D and also wandered through the board game area. Definitely was exhausted at that point.

Overall, I had a great time again. I met a lot of interesting people and played games and listened to some fun talks. There was some incredible cosplay going on and most folks were just super cool. I don't think you can really say that about most large gatherings. I will be going again, and hopefully I can get some more friends to go as it is just a good time to be had.

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