Someone brought up the Disneyland which made me get to thinking... What if your PAX badge came with a fast pass or line hopper or whatever you wanted to call it. You would get one per day and you could essentially skip the line or go in the fast pass line. Your badge would be punched or marked off or whatever. If it works for disney why can't it work for PAX?
Also, super tiny booths doing big raffles.
All this mention of counterfeit badges makes me wonder exactly how many people got in with them. I realize finding out the answer to this is next to impossible, but it would be a nice piece of information to have.
I think the sad thing for me is that I have a massive spinal problem so line wait is not really an option. So if I'm going to play games it is usually medical/media pass day which was Friday this year. The exhibitors were not ready or no swag or we go to the booth and media shut it down. So there was no point really even try play games with any lines. Citizen Skywatch and Square Enix helped me out so I could play and I thank them. I love pax but I've realized that pax will just be there for me to get photos and maybe play a game or two. I still love PAX and will be returning for my fifth year in Prime 2012!
The thing that bugs me about this thread is that people are sound like they are saying "but this ruined MY pax, and it wasn't fun for ME." Unfortunately its not about you, its about 67,000 people as a whole
BETA IS FUCKING CREDIT TO TEAM.
Beta_Angel is awesome. Never doubt this.
I don't think PAX is getting too big, it's more that it encompasses more and more interests all the time, which draws more attendees.
Moe Fwacky wrote:
I agree a lot of negativity has been put on the halofest attendees. Honestly, I think it should be directed to how much space halofest took up for what, from the sound of it, was an underwhelming display, even to halo fans. In the past, that space has been utilized to help spread out and give more space to certain aspects of PAX. This year, that space was taken away for something that was only of strong interest to a minority of attendees.
I'm going to be completely honest with y'all here, it's the only way I know. So here it goes.
This was my first PAX, I enjoyed it thoroughly, the wife and I are already budgeting out next year (going over the receipts from this year, seeing what we can cut out to save cash etc.) I had wanted to attend a PAX for a few years, but just couldn't justify the money involved, especially since last year was the wedding honeymoon time, (money blackhole!) Before that the Wife was in Grad school, etc. When we heard that 343i was doing something Halo related, we cowboyed up, and put in. (FWIW, I enjoyed Halofest, but was a bit underwhelmed, it was like a large spaced out booth.)
Now you're asking "Why did you say all of this in a thread about PAX's relative size?" Because it matters to what I'm about to say. There was a definite vibe this year that my wife and I felt of "Who are are these interlopers on our PAX?" Typically it was coupled with "It's too big this year, they should have had less people" or "It's all those Halofest jerks" (Which I has pointed out above, technically includes me!) or "This is my X PAX, and this one is the worst."
Now there are various reasons I may have been sensitive to this vibe, perhaps it was those I hung out with, perhaps it's becuse I am sometimes very paranoid or perhaps it was because long timers (and mid-timers) really are reflexively circling the wagons against us newcomers. (I discusses this with some others Sunday night, who said that didn't sound entirely unreasonable.)
Which brings me to my point. DON'T DO this.
Allow me to add a few clarifications and a final conclusion. First: No one was openly hostile or even really passively hostile towards me, my wife, my friends, etc. In fact, this is the reason we want to come back, everyone was so freaking nice! But that doesn't prevent this weird hipster geek "I knew PAX before it was cool" vibe.
Secondly on my friends (who know me, know who they are and can out themselves if they want because they do read these forums but will not be named. But I know them, and know they're OK with my candor.) You could say "Find new friends!" but I've known these people for years, longer than I think I've known of PAX honestly. They can be conduits sometimes of the vibe around them. I LOVE this about them, I really do. High energy, they got it, bad juju, also they got it. They had this. That's how I know it was real (and fairly widespread.)
Once PAX was over, and the chatting begin we discussed said vibe. And reached a realization. This is the first time where the generation of Gamers I'm part of (the 1980somethings give or take a few years), the generation I saw most represented at PAX, has come of age. We now have disposable income like I couldn't have imagined 10 years ago for myself. The ability to take vacations. The ability to attend PAX. This means that PAX will continue to grow (even if not at Prime, at other locations) because people who couldn't have dreamed of attending before, can now afford to make the trip. THIS IS NOT A BAD THING, THIS IS A GOOD THING! Those of us geeks from birth, PA readers at 13, now 26, are coming of the woodwork, you're meeting us. This doesn't make us any less a member of your kin. It shouldn't ruin your PAX, it should enhance it! My wife is a actual honest to God rocket scientist, and I'm a crazy, political-junkie, debate lover, reformed Biochemist turned philosopher who has written about how Sci-Fi is the best way to teach bioethics!. (I call that the Asimov career path). Don't you want to meet us? Aren't you glad to have us (and everyone like us. I'm not that egocentric, it's the only examples I know!)
Now, Scalpers=bad, and maybe that contributed to this vibe, dunno (I had hear from an enforcer friend "hundreds" of fake passes, now I'm hearing here "thousands" I can't get my head around how that changes things.) But I needed to point it out, or else I was afraid it'd take hold.
i think one way to address the negativity is really just to look at this issue not as there being 'too many' people somehow ruining pax, but instead as "how can we better accommodate all the awesome people who want to be a part of this awesome thing?" the people are NOT the problem. pax is all about people/community, right?
Do we know that it was the scalpers distributing passes fake passes? And were they promptly addressed? I don't think you can "shut down" can you? I know scalping isn't illegal in some places (nor do I think it should be) but is it illegal if its fake?
They can't really expand because the number of badges legitimately available is basically the maximum amount they can sell without breaking fire code and getting PAX shut down.
As it comes to the amount of people, I still think they should cap attendance at a smaller amount, especially if counterfeits are going to continue to be an issue like this. I have no problem with the crowds, but there is a certain comfort level that I believe could be worked on.