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PAX parties

KrisstaKrissta New HampshireRegistered User regular
edited March 2011 in PAX Archive
I was just wondering who went to what parties.

We ended up getting lucky and attending two, the Rift party on Friday night, and the Irrational party on Saturday night.

Rift:
This party was at the Blu restaurant. We were debating whether we should even go, but we decided to give it a shot. We ended up in the theater district (really awesome), and we were looking around, trying to figure out exactly where this place was. We look up, and there's a restaurant at the top of a building with floor-to-ceiling windows, lit with blue lights. Well, that's it!

We ended up having to show our PAX badges (we were really glad we brought them with us), then we had to show it, and our ID, before entering.

This place was swanky! Major props to the Rift team for throwing an amazing party! No expense was spared. Literally. Free food (and awesome food to boot), some swag, and open bar. I had two amazing cosmos made with Grey Goose vodka. I won't lie, I was pretty happy. :)

We met a ton of awesome people. To me, it was right up there with the release party for Bioshock at Felt years ago.


Irrational:
This party was at M.C. O'Connors, the Irish restaurant in the Westin. We were very, very lucky to get passes. The free swag at the party was awesome. I walked out with a free shirt and two different Bioshock: Infinite posters, which will soon be matted, framed, and hung on the wall. Yes, that good. I was very, very happy!

This party was different, as it was more just for the fans. As you all know, Bioshock: Infinite doesn't even have a release date! The Rift party was a celebration of the game they released, whereas this was more of an informal get-together.

I was able to speak to many Irrational employees, including the art director, whom I confessed my love of his work. :)

Here, there was free food (which was really good), and limited open bar (beer, wine, soda, juice). Since I had overdone it the last night, I decided water was a good way to go. :)

They had a raffle in which three people won one of three different prizes: a framed, signed Bioshock: Infinite painting (I wanted this sooooo bad), a replica bottle from the new game (I'm guessing some kind of liquor bottle), and a two-foot high Little Sister statue. Really awesome of them to raffle these items!

So how about everyone else? :)

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Krissta on

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    AnarchistAbeAnarchistAbe Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    We also hit up the Rift party! That was pretty tight, and definitely not what I had expected.

    However, my favorite party was the GameScoop/IGN party at Barlow's on Saturday! We got "panda" with Greg Miller and Daemon Hatfield (I have the pics to prove it)!!!! I also got to meet up with one of my personal heroes, Anthony Gallegos, there at the bar as well. It was an incredible party, and I hope they do it again next year!!!

    AnarchistAbe on
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    Local H JayLocal H Jay Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    the brink party on friday night was really really cool, unfortunately despite getting there an hour early i didn't make it in the first 200 and didn't get any food (not a big deal). i did get to play a round though and it was quite fun, there where many devs wandering around mingling with people, and the overall look was very cool and appropriate for the game's style.
    i also snagged some very cool swag here, a very nice brink shirt in black, and a cool facemask like the one characters in the game wear. anyway's here are some pictures i took while there:
    kf5rhw.jpg
    25tf57c.jpg
    2vx3kfa.jpg

    Local H Jay on
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    FastrFastr Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    The brink party was kinda weird. Even being in the first 200 it took forever to get in, even when they opened up they only allowed about 10 peopel at a time in. Then we had to go thru a security check.. which is odd, they only looked for booz/drugs. VIPs where drinking all night tho. The "food" was just the worst slice of pizza i've ever had, you didn't miss anything.

    The 1UP party was really fun tho. Lots of cool people and chatter. I was lucky enough to get a VIP bracelet from Steve from 1up. Good bartenders/venue/people.

    Fastr on
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    cyntheticcynthetic Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I agree with pretty much everything you said about the Irrational party.

    I also went to the SFX360 party, Friday night, and was lucky enough to get a VIP pass. Although, among my complaints, by the time the night was over it seemed like 75% of the crowd had VIP badges around their neck.

    It started of amazingly. Open bar for VIP, and some uncrowded areas to sit, great djs, no food, but we knew that going into it. My fiance and I started the night having a fantastic time. However, the later it got, the more chaotic and unorganized everything seemed to be. It was like... at 10 or so the party just started to unravel from the seems.

    First of all, the had very few stations set up to play games (which is contrary to what advertisements had led us to believe). I not once got the chance to play a single thing.

    There was a lot of unnecessary crowd shuffling. There was some sort of lack of communication going on, because we'd see people (and ourselves as well) be moved by one staff member to a floor, or area, and then moved again by a frustrated staff member, that seemed irritated at our being where we were asked to go.

    There were a lot of amazing prizes to be won... sort of. I had two sour experiences with this. First, they had gobs of stuff on pool tables, and at the one I was standing at we were told that if we walked around the table like a cake walk, they'd start handing out the swag (everything from joystick pads to whole consoles). The table was way too crowded for a steady rotation, so there was a lot of going and stopping. Regardless, the guy running it was being incredibly tight with the swag. Other staff members even came over to tell him to give out more. I stood at that table pressed between two very sweaty individuals for well over an hour and a half, with my eyes set on the PS3 (only console I don't have yet :D) not that I'd be upset if it went to someone else at the table, but I had to try right? Well... like I said, an hour and a half goes by and another staff member walks up to the table, grabs the PS3 and walks off......... w. t. f.? So, obviously I left the table with nothing more than an ugly plastic thing for a PS controller.
    The second prize problem I had was with the raffle (not the Tron console, the one that included everything else). I bought a raffle ticket, and wasn't asked for any contact info, so I asked the woman how we'd be notified who won, and she said, "Oh, they'll make sure everyone hears it." I asked what time, and was told midnight... so just after 12 I go back to the table where I bought the ticket and was told that it had "already happened" and "if you weren't there to claim your ticket, they'd have called someone else." I was quite angry, and my fiance suggested asking for my money back (because I'd rather donate the money to Childs Play than the animal thing, and I felt like I had a right to decide that based on the misrepresentation of the original staff that sold me the ticket.) So I went back up to the hottest room in the building again, and saw Derek Nolan, who was, btw, incredibly nice/helpful the entire night (The one person keeping me from thinking the party was a complete disaster), and spoke to him about it. He contact someone via walkie, and said that I had (AGAIN) been misinformed, and that the raffle would take place on the top floor, they wouldn't call other numbers if you weren't there, and it would be happening any moment. Relieved, I went upstairs and took a seat as the DJ announced "last song." and then "ok one more song" and again "I'm thinking about playing one more." and then "ok ok one more" ...not to mention each "song" is a 8 minute mash-up. I kept my cool though, and waited for the actual last song. Guess what, no raffle. Tired, irritated, and over-all just fed up, I left. And I don't forsee myself going to their future parties.

    The building was incredibly overpacked. I could barely move. The first half of the night, the VIP sections gave an escape from this (don't think I'd have stayed without that access), but like I said, by the end of the night, it seemed like everyone was VIP so it was equally as crowded.

    There were faux strippers. Girls dressed in nothing but bra and panties dancing in the center of the room. At first I thought they were attendees, but later learned that wasn't the case. It actually made me chuckle though, when a guy seated next to me said sarcastically, "So, are we supposed to be tipping them, or what? Because I didn't expect to need my ones tonight."

    Maybe it was the last minute venue change that had everything at SFX working like a broken clock, but overall I'd say Irrational really knows how to throw a good party by keeping it simple, and small. SFX definitely needs to work out some kinks and REALLY work on communication between staff. I feel sort of guilty, writing that I didn't enjoy a party that I was lucky enough to get a VIP pass to, but to say that it rocked would be completely dishonest. I don't, however, plan to bad mouth them all over the interwebs. I've said my peace, and I'll keep it at that. Sorry this is a wall of text...

    cynthetic on
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    lillblillb Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I hit up the Irrational Party. It was pretty awesome. Cliffy B made an appearance, my friend got his picture taken with him before he left. We also drank quite a bit since it was an open bar. My friend also got to talk one of the lead programmers there but unfortunately I didn't also talk to him since it would be nice to get to talk about getting into game programming. Overall it was a good time, i wish I had won one of the items they raffled off though.

    lillb on
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    WaterbornWaterborn Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Cynthetic, thank you for your feedback regarding the Gamers Gone Wild party that we hosted in coordination with SFX-360 and Emminentt Productions. As much as I would love to blame the last minute venue change for the logistical issues that developed over the course of the night, we must accept responsibility for the frustrations that you and others experienced on Friday. We are currently reviewing the event thoroughly so that we can learn from what went wrong (and recreate those aspects that went smoothly). We are looking at a new venue for our 2012 event which, if all goes well, will allow us to provide a more controlled environment, more space for activities such as gaming and a logistically viable way that we can better administer prize give-aways so that they are fair to everyone. For the record, I was the one who removed the PS3 from the SWAG table later in the evening. I did so because people had begun to simply grab prizes off the table and I knew that particular item was to be one of the main prizes for the SFX drawing. That item currently resides with the SFX-360 staff and they are working on a way in which it can be distributed in a manner that is fair to all.

    Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have further feedback or if I can provide any additional assistance.

    Sincerely,

    Dane Tullock
    Community Manager
    www.2old2play.com

    Waterborn on
    http://www.2old2play.com/Blog/Waterborn
    East Coast Correspondent for 2Old2Play.com
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    KrisstaKrissta New HampshireRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    The professional pics from the Rift party are up. Just thought I'd share my personal favorite. ;) This is what happens when you have top-shelf open bar!
    1216044045_ZQNNr-XL.jpg

    Krissta on
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    RaparthRaparth Registered User new member
    edited March 2011
    @Waterborn I figured there was some reason it was taken off the table, it was just very frustrating since it was really the only reason I was standing there so long. I'm glad to see that you guys are so actively trying to get feedback, and respond to attendees. It definitely helps lessen the bitterness knowing that you guys are trying so hard to correct things and make next year better.

    Raparth on
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    adesteradester Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Krissta wrote: »
    The professional pics from the Rift party are up. Just thought I'd share my personal favorite. ;) This is what happens when you have top-shelf open bar!
    1216044045_ZQNNr-XL.jpg

    lol.
    I looked like I was on the sauce myself.
    1216035744_sHr2A-X2.jpg
    I think I still had my pax shirt on underneath too.

    adester on
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    cyntheticcynthetic Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Oops... that comment from Raparth is from me. Silly fiances not logging out of their computers. >.< and silly me for not checking.

    cynthetic on
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    chrismsxchrismsx Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Where exactly did everyone here about these parties from? I often wondered if there was a PAX night life following to convention or at other times. I always felt like I was missing out.

    chrismsx on
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    Mike TooleMike Toole Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I went to the Gamers Gone Wild party on Friday and the 1UP MeetUP on Saturday.

    GGW - I know some of the 2Old2Play crew and enjoyed myself last year, so hitting this was a must. I showed up early, about 7:45, and was pleased to find a modest line with no waiting to get in at 8 sharp. We were given small swag bags and directed up to the 3rd floor, where there was a veritable mountain of goodies. I totally lucked out and got a Sharkoon gaming headset (asking nicely for a goodie paid off midway through the event) but I'd definitely like to see some refinements in how that mountain of swag is awarded - maybe some kind of silly, simple game, like a spin-the-wheel deal? The "cakewalk" approach killed my attempts to socialize on that end of the room, since the staff was constantly urging people to keep moving. My only other wrinkle: All beer was in bottles, and annoyingly expensive ($6 Coronas? Really?). Hopefully the crew can find a venue next year that actually has draft beers and a cool, inexpensive drink special!

    At the same time, I met a lot of awesome people (I may have subjected you to my surefire conversation starter: "So, how do you fit in with all of this?") including possible future business partners, got to play some Gears 3 beta, and had a blast. I knew the crowding was going to get out of hand after 10 or 11pm (same thing happened last year) so I beat a retreat at 10:45. In any event, thanks to the usual suspects for throwing this, it really capped off Friday nicely.

    1UP MeetUP - Nice and close by at Whiskey Priest. The actual branding and sponsorship mystified me - it was a partnership thing with SEGA to promote Shogun 2, but there was only one lonely laptop in the corner demo'ing the game, and nobody from the company to try and explain what the hell I was looking at when I tried it out (man, it was complicated!). No swag, but VIP bracelets were easy to get if you were sharp and found a 1UP staffer to ask for one during the weekend, so the open-bar shindig was packed. Again, I met a lot of really great people, and there was a nice selection of beers to boot (Carlsberg? Harpoon? Dogfish Head? NEWCASTLE? Hell yes!).

    I'm glad we had that party thread - I wouldn't have even known about the MeetUP without it, since I only check 1UP for reviews. I think every over-21 PAXster who craves an escape from the convention should make an effort to hit one of these bashes - just remember, it's gonna be crowded like everything else at PAX, so plan ahead and get there early!

    Mike Toole on
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    MercurialGamerMercurialGamer Registered User new member
    edited March 2011
    I ended up going to the Arena.net/Guild Wars2 meet and greet Friday night. Was pretty cool, had open bar and play sessions for Guild Wars 2. The way play session was setup was really nice. When you entered you got a card that listed the time slot for your play session. So you could go mingle around then when it was your time you just headed over and started playing. It was the 40 minute play demo. They also had swag they were giving out.

    MercurialGamer on
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    ChorazinChorazin Lancaster, PARegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    i was also lucky enough to win passes to the Irrational Games party and it was AMAZING. I was one of the guys playing Ticket to Ride with Tim, the product manager from Irrational. I drank quite a few Guinness' and certainly enjoyed the delicious free food the waiters kepts bringing around! It was so cool to meet Ken Levine and Cliffy B too, as well as chat with tons of Irrational staffers

    That party made my PAX epic level this year!

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