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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

PAX Housekeeping, Impromptu SLOGPAX Nerd Meetup, and Reverse Bleg

Posted by on Tue, Aug 28, 2012 at 5:45 PM

First off: if you don't know what PAX is, you can skip this post. Although geez, peoples: PAX and (its offspring) PAX East are the TWO LARGEST CONSUMER GAMING EVENTS IN THE U.S. It is a Thing One Should Know About, and it started right here, completely fan-powered with nary a copper piece spent on self-promotion—and it sells out ridiculously quickly, packing downtown every year with a complete taxonomy of gamers.

It is a troubling and possibly surprising fact that many exhibitors do not even know that PAX is an acronym and have never heard of Penny Arcade.
  • It is a troubling and possibly surprising fact that many exhibitors do not even know that PAX is an acronym and have never heard of Penny Arcade.

Anyway. Three things:

1. Let's have a beer! And play a game! Slog nerds are awesome (as is massively evident from previous gamer-y comment threads) and they should totally meet each other in the face. Impromptu Slog nerd meetup is this Wednesday (tomorrow) night at the Stumbling Monk, from 6 to 9 pm. Let's talk about PAX plans and otherwise engage in things that let us add BBB to our mana pool. Bringing board and/or card games to share/teach is encouraged, and we will have at least one Special Game Designer Guest and Secret Playtest Demo.

2. The reverse bleg part: If you didn't get tickets this year (or hey, even if you did), tell us in the comments if there's anything you want us to investigate at PAX and report back on. We're like Curiosity and you're like people wearing headsets and bad blue polo shirts. We know we're going to D&D Live, but everything else is still, uh, inchoate. Plans-wise. (Okay, we might go to the Intel presentation, but only because they addressed us as "esteemed press and media members." It feels kind of impolite to ignore that.)

3. Remember the lessons of previous years: Nerf your network connection if you want your phone battery to last. Download the Guidebook app. Use the bathrooms at the Hyatt because they are peeing heaven. Pack plenty of trail mix and whiskey—and, of course, hand sanitizer, because PAX flu kills. What other tips are we forgetting?

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

 

Comments (24) RSS

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Zebes 1
I missed the ticket window this year, then I thought about the dignity and respect with which your average gamer conducts themselves online and decided that maybe I could do without being surrounded by those types.
Posted by Zebes http://www.badrap.org/rescue/index.html on August 28, 2012 at 5:55 PM · Report this
stinkbug 2
The ticket "window" was more like a tiny ticket mouse hole. I too missed out and didn't get a pass this year. (Specifically, I tried the first day tickets were available, but they eventually shut down registration to go back to the old registration system at some future date. I checked almost daily if registration was back up, but of course on a day I didn't check they re-opened it and everything sold out quickly. Blah blah. Lots of people complained about not getting a pass this year. I guess the scalpers are having a good year though.)

Posted by stinkbug on August 28, 2012 at 6:05 PM · Report this
Enigma 3
You had to pick the exact time I'm leading my Guild in exploring the newly released Guild Wars 2. Guh.
But... If you want to extend the party after 9, tomorrow is also the unofficial sneak peak of Raygun Lounge, the offshoot of Gamma Ray Games. I will likely be there after 9 and would love to say 'hi' to fellow Slog Nerds.
Posted by Enigma http://washingtonunitedformarriage.org/ on August 28, 2012 at 6:09 PM · Report this
Mary P. Traverse 4
I will be at the Nerd Happy and also welcome your PAX requests! Also, seriously you guys, WASH YOUR HANDS. OFTEN.
Posted by Mary P. Traverse http://www.nerdhole.org/ on August 28, 2012 at 6:11 PM · Report this
TheMisanthrope 5
Extra batteries, especially if you have the 4S where Apple and AT&T conspired to not let you fucking turn off 4G, and drop down to Edge, allowing you to use your phone for 10 hours instead of 2.

*ahem*

Sorry. Ranty.

Anyways, I'm quite fond of my NewTrent (commercial). It doesn't work for your gaming devices that don't charge through USB, but it is nice for iPods and iPhones.

Anybody else have extra batteries they like?
Posted by TheMisanthrope on August 28, 2012 at 6:12 PM · Report this
evilvolus 6
@4 - No kidding. I caught what was probably H1N1 at PAX in 2009 and was bedridden for three days. I should probably have gone to the hospital, but I couldn't move, and Croc is a terrible nursemaid.
Posted by evilvolus on August 28, 2012 at 6:17 PM · Report this
7
@1 The average online gamer is a 45 year old mom on facebook.

PAX is a gamer love-in, and any xnoxious types that are there are far more quiet while in meatspace. Dignity and respect aren't typically the things that are lacking, rather it's deodorant and mouthwash. Any convention can be bad, but PAX has a slightly higher demographic of the social-nicety-unaware than, say, a dentists' convention and in tight quarters it only takes one.

Bring backpack, rations, water bottle (refill frequently), ibuprofen, ear plugs, eye drops (air conditioing gets to people), spare t-shirt (or grab one from swag), gum, 'energy' drink of choice. Comfortable shoes are key.

Surprised someone hasn't started selling "adventurer's kits" yet.
Posted by dirge on August 28, 2012 at 6:21 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 8
Check on iPad Mini games and how awesome they sound on its speakers.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on August 28, 2012 at 6:26 PM · Report this
DeaconBlues 9
I was going to be at the Roanoke on wednesday but perhaps I'll make an appearance here.
Posted by DeaconBlues http://radzillas.blogspot.com/ on August 28, 2012 at 6:28 PM · Report this
Jessica 10
Love of god, wear deodorant. Shower. It's packed, people are sweaty, and a little extra hygiene effort makes everyone around you grateful. Not perfume/cologne, but an actual shower with soap and everything, and some sort of pits-don't-stink product. Speaking from past PAX experience, nothing turns awesome into "jesus fucking christ, I'm done here" faster than smelling the hair/pits of the person crammed up against you in line.
Posted by Jessica on August 28, 2012 at 7:02 PM · Report this
Knat 11
Seeing as by this time next month I'll probably be on my first day of unemployment, I can't miss the opportunity for a pile of overtime at work over the Labor Day weekend. Otherwise, I'd totally be at the SLOG event. Best wishes.
Posted by Knat on August 28, 2012 at 8:06 PM · Report this
12
Cover the Cards Against Humanity panel please! :D
Posted by notsosupermario on August 28, 2012 at 9:03 PM · Report this
13
Some of us have to work! :-)
Posted by Brodie on August 28, 2012 at 9:59 PM · Report this
JensR 14
You bastards.
I live on the other side of the damn atlantic, not just the continent, the atlantic aswell - and here you are rubbing it in by inviting other nerds to drink beer.

Okokok... I want you to check out indie roleplaying games (the PnP kind) - if they get any love from PAX at all and perhaps talk to some of the developers about how they feel about not only PAX but the market for indie rpg's in the US. Since they are not economicly that effective as larger brands of rpg's and certainly not as well-off as console game studios or computer game studios - do they have any room at all at such a costly event?

Oh and if anyone wants to have a phone on for the meet up with perhaps a video hangout on G+ that would be awesome (I would be ready to get up at 3 in the morning to watch other nerds get drunk)

@1 Zebes, its not just console gamers there - and even if it where they tend to be mild mannered and awkward in real life.
Posted by JensR http://ohyran.se on August 29, 2012 at 12:32 AM · Report this
15
Gotta agree with @1. After the way the gamer culture reacted to Sarkeesian, I'd rather go hang out at that dentist convention.
Posted by sanotehu on August 29, 2012 at 6:11 AM · Report this
Pridge Wessea 16
Check out the new SimCity please! Is it faithful to its previous incarnations or is it a disappointing cesspool of Spore proportions?
Posted by Pridge Wessea on August 29, 2012 at 7:17 AM · Report this
sloegin 17
A little Campho-Phenique under the nose does wonders when navigating a space reeking of gamer funk.
Posted by sloegin on August 29, 2012 at 9:21 AM · Report this
Beetlecat 18
Is Ocean Marketing going to be there?
Posted by Beetlecat on August 29, 2012 at 10:19 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 19
@14 and @16 tied for the Janus double-sided Penny Arcade win!
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on August 29, 2012 at 10:23 AM · Report this
lizlemon 20
Can you check out BattleBlock Theater at the Behemoth studios booth?? I want to play it sooooo bad!
Posted by lizlemon on August 29, 2012 at 10:58 AM · Report this
21
Ironically, your SLOGPAX meetup conflicts directly with the official weekly time for Dungeons & Dragons Encounters at game stores everywhere. Including the one in Overlake where I play.
Posted by K on August 29, 2012 at 11:14 AM · Report this
Durang Durang 22
Follow Official Pax (http://twitter.com/official_pax) and Pax Lines (http://twitter.com/pax_lines)on twitter. They'll keep you up to date on the major session lines. They do some nice giveaways, too.
Posted by Durang Durang http://www.busygamernews.com on August 29, 2012 at 11:35 AM · Report this
MacCrocodile 23
@6 - I kept you from drowning on your own blood, you ingrate.
Posted by MacCrocodile http://maccrocodile.com/ on August 29, 2012 at 3:02 PM · Report this
24
Tips from a PAX goer:
Buy some Zinc tablets and possibly Vitamin C tablets/'Emergen-C'. They may seem like they don't work, but anecdotally, I've not had concrud three years running.

DRINK WATER FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DRINK SOME GODDAMN WATER.

EAT FOOD, ACTUAL FOOD. CANDY AND SUGAR WILL MAKE YOU SICK. Not to mention make you pass the hell out at inopportune times, or worse become angry in the middle of that Twilight Emperium match you FINALLY GOT TO RUN.

Don't be afraid to take a nap. Seriously. But, if you don't sleep this weekend, do yourself a favor and drink more water and eat more food. That flesh bag of yours easily becomes a shambling corpse.

If it's your first year, don't be afraid to just wander about and sit where you are interested. There is something FOR EVERY GAMER, you may just be pleasantly surprised.

Don't be afraid of the Enforcers. They are there to help you and will answer your questions in the most professional manner possible. They will not, nor should not, in any way shape or form, touch you, hurt you, frisk you, or otherwise be like TSA agents. They are volunteers who are there spending their time to make the convention your playground and temple! That said, DO NOT BE A DICK, period. That's a rule.

Consider a shirt and clothing that wicks perspiration from you, especially if you're lugging about a huge costume or prop or bag o'swag. It's air conditioned... but there's thousands of people, within twenty to fifty feet of you at all times. Compression shirts and clothing seem to work really well for me.

Deodorant, seriously. This is not a joke, do yourself a huge favor. DO NOT BE THAT PERSON.

Bring a game you love. You will find more fans, and more converts than you know what to do with if you're willing to share.

BRING A BAG OF HOLDING. Well, a bag, in any case, one that you like to lug things around in, but bring a bag TWICE THE SIZE you normally would. Half of it should be your things you're carrying like games or food or water (bringing your own water bottle and food will save you money and time as well!), the other half should be available for the inevitable stuff you will likely pick up.

The final tip? Have fun. I'm surprised at how many people go to conventions and come back more stressed out.
More...
Posted by Shaman on August 29, 2012 at 3:16 PM · Report this

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