Two cons enter, one con leave!
I’m just kidding. We already knew PAX was the best gaming festival in North America and after today’s announcement from the ESA it’s also the biggest. With a projected attendece of something like 13 thousand people and exhibitors like Nintendo, Ubisoft, Microsoft and ATI PAX is in position to pick up where E3 left off. Apparently we’re not the only ones who noticed either. The site has been pretty wonky and that’s because everyone and their mother is talking about what the lack of and E3 convention means for PAX. We’re used to a fuck ton of traffic here at the arcade but when we get 30,000 concurrent users even our hardware feels the burn.
So what does this mean for PAX? Well honestly I think it’s too soon to say for sure. I personally never thought of E3 as our competitor. The two conventions had very different goals. Now E3, at least as we know it is gone but the focus of PAX has not changed. PAX is about gamers not publishers and geek culture instead of multi-million dollar business deals. We have no desire to turn PAX into a new E3 so don’t worry about that. The only place I think we might see a noticeable change is in our exhibition hall. It’s already quite a spectacle but I think that the lack of an E3 event means our exhibition hall is going to get fucking nuts.
We’ve already started getting phone calls from publishers and developers asking about exhibition space for PAX 2007. There simply won’t be anything else like it. No matter how big it gets the PAX exhibition hall will always be about developers connecting with gamers. It’s also just be one piece in the PAX puzzle. We’ll still have the 24 hour table top gaming, the geek rock concerts, the giant LAN party and bring your own computer rooms, the free console gaming and tournaments, the Omegathon and all the panels. All of that stuff and everything I can’t remember right is what makes PAX special. I’m definitely proud of what it’s become and I’m excited to watch it grow but I’m mostly just thrilled that I get to attend it. It’s the show we’ve always wanted to go to and as long as we’re running things that will never change.
We’ll be closing online registration for PAX 06 on August 3rd at 6:30 PM. If you want to save yourself some money and get your badge early you only have a few more days. Take a few minutes to hit the PAX website. Look around at the exhibitors and the bands we’ve got lined up for this year’s event. Scroll through the list of tournaments and special guests and then figure out some way to get your ass to Bellevue Washington at the end of August for the best three days in gaming.