South 2015 Q&A

SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
edited September 2015 in PAX South
*Note: and yes, we mean any sort of question, especially if it's not covered by the FAQ. Please do NOT make a new thread to ask your question, just post it here. I promise it will be answered promptly.

This thread is a place for people to ask questions, and for the PAX experienced to provide answers (and some general PAX wisdom). Please keep focused on the Q&A nature of this thread.


When: January 23rd - 25th 2015

Where: Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center

Wikipedia wrote:
The Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) is an annual gamer festival held in Washington. PAX was created by Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik, the authors of the Penny Arcade webcomic, because they wanted to attend a show that gave equal attention to video gamers, computer gamers, and tabletop gamers. No such show existed, so PAX was born.

Created in 2004, PAX has doubled in size each successive year until it started taking over the Cites of Seattle, Boston, Melbourne and now San Antonio.


All of the information found in this FAQ plus many more interesting tidbits and guides can be found on our PAX Community wiki http://wiki.paxcommunity.net/paxwiki/Main_Page

Penny Arcade,
PAX Website

What this forum is: This forum is for the discussion of PAX, finding people to carpool or caravan with, finding people to split the cost of a hotel room, and general questions and information about PAX as well as community events and gatherings.

Click here for the Official PAX South Page FAQ

Here's a community-based FAQ for those of you who don't want to comb through this thread to see if your question has been answered already.

General Stuff

HOW DO I FIND ANYTHING IN THIS FAQ?!? give me the tl;dr!

Well... that's kinda hard. But you can search for the topic you are looking for using ctrl-f or the forum search function.

When will x be announced?
Soon. Don't expect any definite announcements any sooner than 3-4 weeks before PAX. Don't expect a final schedule and show map until about two weeks before PAX. If you're curious if your favourite game developer, journalist, internet personality is going to be there, shoot them an e-mail and ask, because if it hasn't been announced, we don't know either.

How do I register for PAX?
Soon. Registration will be open on the PAX South website.

Do the PAX passes have my name on them?

It's after Dec 1st, if I ordered my tickets online, where do I pick it up?


I’m from outside of the US and I did not choose the FedEx shipping option, where do I pick up my pass?


Can I apply to be an Enforcer and help out at PAX?
If more enforcers are needed, an announcement will be made.

What are the hours of PAX?

Friday: 10am - 12am
Saturday: 10am - 12am
Sunday: 10am - 6pm

Friday: 10am - 6pm
Saturday: 10am - 6pm
Sunday: 10am - 6pm

What does BYOC stand for?
Bring Your Own Computer. This is a large LAN party within PAX! So bring your gaming computer and get playing!
Hint! Follow @Official_Pax for updates on the BYOC room AND for updates when passes go on sale! These sell out quick!

I bought a BYOC pass but now I don't want it! Where can I sell it??

You have two choices. BYOC passes are being mailed out along with regular passes. You can either give it to a friend or you can ask for a refund, email pax_questions@paxsite.com

What is the EXPO floor like?
The exhibition hall is full of awesome. There are upcoming games, and hardware showcased as well as things for sale from games, to guides, to t-shirts, to dice. Prices are comparable with standard retail pricing, or a little cheaper, even. Also, there are tons of free shirts and other swag being handed out by various companies.

I live outside the United States. How do I fill in my phone number on the registration form?
You just have to split it up the way US numbers are split (###-###-####). It's a 10 digit number if I'm not mistaken. If you've got more than 10 digits, I don't know.

The ticket says the Exhibit Hall closes at 6pm but the Event stays open until 12AM. Does this mean there will be actual things happening and things to look at until 12AM or does it just mean people are allowed to co-mingle in the building until they close the doors at 12AM?
Once you hit the later hours, the Expo Hall will be shut down. However, you'll still have the Concerts, Panels, Console/PC Freeplay, Handheld Lounge, Tabletop Lounge, etc. In previous years, there have also been movie/webisode screenings fairly late as well. Basically, it's "Make your own fun with people" time!

How do we transfer tickets? I bought a registration and BYOC pass, but recently found out I won't be going, and have a friend who wants to buy my tickets from me, but neither of us have any idea how to get the ticket to be transferred.
BYOC ticket registration is done differently than the 3-day pass, look to the BYOC thread for your answer. For the 3-day pass you just have to mail it to the guy when they are shipped out. If you would like to transfer the ticket it's a little more involved. If you have or are buying tickets that must be picked up at will call, email pax_questions@paxsite.com

I have moved since buying my PAX passes. How do I change my address information to ensure that my passes get mailed to my current address and not my previous address?
First, you should submit a change of address through the USPS. This will ensure all mail sent to your previous address is sent to your current address. As far as changing your registration you can log back into your registration page using your confirmation number. Once you've logged in you will be able to edit your address.

I didn’t receive my PAX Badges in the Mail!! What do I do?
If you live outside of the US, or you purchased your pass after the cut off date for badges to be mailed, you will need to pick up your badge at Will Call using your paper ticket with the Bar Code on it AND a valid piece of photo ID. If your badge really is lost in the mail, email pax_questions@paxsite.com

I have my badge; do I need the paper ticket with the bar-code on it?
Nope! You’re good to go.

Will there be WiFi accessible at PAX?
Unlikely, according to the convention centre website, the only free wifi is in the main entrance lobby area...

Are there iphone/android apps for pax?

Yes! There will be an official app announced a week or two before PAX. There are also many unofficial ones that pop up as well. Keep an eye on the forums for an App discussion thread.

Are there going to be a ton of people this year?

There's going to be a ton of people.

Will just one day will be enough PAX?

No matter who you ask on this forum, we're all going to say no. If you don't want to believe us, that's fine, but when you get to PAX for that one day and realize you could have had four days of that, you're going to regret not buying a 3 day pass.

I'm disabled/ have a mobility impairment/ use a wheelchair, how easy will it be to get around PAX?

No problem! Apply for a medical pass, and you get special accommodation getting into panels and the like. You can apply for a pass for yourself and a +1 so you can have someone help you. To register, email pax_questions@paxsite.com

I'm lost, alone and terribly scared! What Do?

Help is never far! Cast your gaze upon the crowd and look for awesome people wearing these sweet blue ORANGE, THE SHIRTS WILL BE ORANGE shirts (They say ENFORCER on the back). They can direct you to where to go and provide any help you need.


I have an amazing idea for a panel!! Who should I contact?!?

Once panel submissions are opened, if you just have an idea email pax_panels@paxsite.com with your pitch! If you actually want to run your own panel head over to south.panels.paxsite.com with your proposal. If accepted you and your participants will receive a complimentary Speaker Pass for PAX South 2015. Good luck!

Just how BIG is PAX?

Excellent question! this may be of interest to you. (Credit goes to @”dyaballikl”)

I was expecting to get my badge in the mail and all I received is this bobcat? Wut??


Bobcat is working as intended.

"we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
zerzhul on


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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    edited July 2014

    How early should I get in line each day?

    Getting in line is something that should be decided by YOU, so many of us can't tell you exactly when you should show up.
    However, I would recommend getting in line fairly shortly after the doors open. If not, then feel free to show up whenever you wake up.
    If you are the more social geek, I would highly recommend getting in line as soon as you can.
    The people are what make PAX, and there is no better way to meet/converse/trade pokemans with these people than being in line. Remember, you are all there showing your love for games in some way, shape or form, so feel free to strike up a conversation with the person next to you!
    However, if you end up befriending these people, I would highly suggest getting their contact info, as I have lost many potential friends this way, watching the people I just spent 3 hours with in line fade off into the crowd of gamers.

    NOTE: doors to the building don't open until 8am!

    My Gods! The Lines! The Crowded Crowded Lines! What do I do about the Lines?

    Whichever venue PAX is in, on whatever coast in whosoever dimension, Crowding is almost omnipresent. Recent PAXes have sold out weeks in advance, and the various convention centers have been unable to contain their awesomeness in a roomy manner. There are lines for almost everything, including lines in order to get into lines (I'm talking to you, Merch line PAX East). There is little you can do to avoid them.

    Neither is there a hard and fast rule for when you need to get in line for a panel or event, as it depends on demand for the individual panel, as well as what day of the Con it's on, what's going on at the same time, and whether Wil Wheaton is involved in any way. For most Panels an hour beforehand is quite sufficient, and you might be able to get away with 30 minutes, if you're lucky. The Make A Strip Panel, any Wil Wheaton Panel, and Scott Kurtz are likely to require a little more time. If you want to get into the keynote on Friday, you'll need to arrive at the convention center when it opens at 8:00am, and go straight to the Main Theatre line up.

    Advice for surviving the lines
    • Relax - Lines happen. Getting angry, impatient or upset will not make them go away. Before you line up, decide whether spending this time is worth it, and then simply go with it. Take the time to plan the rest of your day, read the forums or, better yet, refer to the bottom entry in this list.
    • Follow @PAX_Lines on twitter!! This feed updates constantly about how full lines are around the convention.
    • Plan Ahead and Prioritise - Unfortunately there is no chance that any one person can experience everything PAX has to offer, and any five people would have their work cut out for them. When you're looking at which panels or events to go to, choose a few select things you absolutely can't miss and spend the time in line to make sure you get in. When looking at the timetable try to mentally add queue times to the beginning of each session, to get a more realistic idea of what you can and can't see.
    • Queue Responsibly - Don't impede walkways. If an enforcer asks you to move, he's not taking away your place in line, just trying to consolidate it into something more manageable and less in the way.
    • Get comfortable - If sitting on a hard surface or standing for extended periods of time causes you discomfort, you might want to consider bringing a cushion or potentially applying for a medical badge. Unfortunately, chairs or beanbags can't be provided because they would hamper evacuation in the event of fire.
    • I need to pee - That's not a problem. Just ask your friendly line neighbour to hold your place, and go. Try not to leave it until the doors open, and DO NOT open your DS or check your Facebook whilst enthroned. If you want to be super prepared, check to see where the nearest restroom is before you get in line, and visit it before you settle down to wait. Also, don't dehydrate yourself just in order to hold your place in line.
    • Enjoy the lines - Seriously. There are few places in the world where the next random person standing next to you is likely to be friendly, and instantly grok your rim-shot Monty Python reference, Trade you that last Pokemon, or finally explain THAC0 to your satisfaction. Take your Magic deck, DS, Zombie Dice, Travel Catan and a bottle of water, and hang out with some interesting people for a while.

    There are of course some people who find it impossible to wait in line for any reason. If you have a medical condition which precludes lines, talk to the enforcers, who may well be able to accommodate you. If you are simply temperamentally unsuited to waiting, or don't want to take the time to do so, there are ways to enjoy yourself at PAX without waiting around. Many freeplay areas, especially Tabletop, can easily be navigated without having to wait at all, or with a simple sign-up sheet. Large portions of the expo halls also, and the Concerts have generally been accessible 20 minutes or so after the line has gone in. Play tests for the major developers are essentially impossible to get into You may need to sit or stand nearer to the back of the hall, but if you hate lines you probably aren't all that fond of mosh pits either. Not all the sessions fill up to capacity, especially later in the con. As long as you avoid the big ticket sessions, and are prepared for disappointment, you may simply be able to ask the enforcers on the door if there is any space inside.

    Are the theatres cleared in-between panels / concerts?
    YES! Except for a few back to back panels in the main theatre (ie, the Keynotes goes right into the first PA Q&A) all theatres are cleared out between panels.

    zerzhul on
    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular


    I heard the concerts were loud. Is this true?

    Yes, and maybe. It's all relative, but the concerts can get pretty loud. It's a big space, with a lot of people, and everyone wants to be able to hear, right?

    Can you turn the volume down? It's hurting my ears!

    No, unfortunately, the volume cannot be turned down; the knobs on all the amps were taken off by sneaky Rock Gremlins. If you think that volume might be an issue, we suggest this time-tested concert junkie trick: bring a set of earplugs to help muffle the sound. Convenient personal sound dampening, available in several fun colors! Make sure you get "musician's earplugs" or "high-fidelity earplugs". These are earplugs with channels in them that attenuate all frequencies equally. Basically, they just make everything you hear quieter, without changing how it sounds. These can be found on Amazon for about $10.

    How do the concerts work?

    Much like everything else at PAX, concerts are first come, first served. However, please don't attempt to line up for them more than a reasonable time prior to the start of the concerts. Ask an enforcer in the area where the concerts will be taking place and they can tell you when you will be allowed to start lining up.

    What happened to concert wristbands?

    Wristbands have been done away with in favour of the new first come first serve system.

    How Late do the concerts go?

    Concerts are scheduled to end around 2330-midnight though sometimes they can run a tad late.

    Where will the concerts be?!?


    What is the schedule for bands performing?

    To be determined. This will be updated as soon as this information becomes available.

    When should I show up to see performance X?

    The Main Theatre has a very high capacity during concerts, as well as a higher turnover than during panels. More often than not, you can simply walk right in. However, to be safer, for any given band, you should attempt to show up around a half an hour to an hour before they are scheduled to start (earlier if you want to be toward the front).

    What happens if the theatre fills up?

    We do take count of attendance, and new admission will be temporarily denied if the theatre is full. However, concerts tend to have high turnover, and new people will be allowed in on a roughly 25-out, 25-in schedule.

    Are there medical badge accommodations for concerts?

    Absolutely! Just like with any other panel, if you show up before the line is capped, anyone with a medical badge will be allowed in early to find a seat.

    What is the policy on moshing?

    Please don’t do it. PAX concerts are intended to be a fun, enjoyable experience for everyone. Moshing is not fun for everyone, and puts people at risk. If any violent or aggressive behavior is witnessed in the crowd, you will be asked to stop by an Enforcer. Repeated action will result in a minimum of removal from the concerts. We simply ask that you control yourself and allow EVERYONE around you to have a good time!

    Is food allowed in the concerts?

    While food is not expressly prohibited, we ask that you use good sense and do not bring it into the crowded parts of the concert. Drinks (soda, water, etc.) are allowed, and are ok in the crowd, but please, if you bring food or drinks, do not leave them on the ground, especially in crowded areas. This often results in people tripping or slipping on them and potentially getting injured. As with anywhere else in PAX, alcohol is not permitted.

    What if I see something potentially hazardous or have other questions/concerns?

    This is the same at concerts as with anywhere else in PAX: talk to an Enforcer! Enforcers are friendly, and they are there to help and to do their best to make sure you have a great PAX experience.

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    Merch Booth

    The PA merch booth has ITEM X that I really really really want. When should I get it?

    As soon as you can. Typically this means Friday morning on your way to the queue line. If what you want is guaranteed to be in limited supply (like the PAX East scarves, merch hats, or uncommonly sized tee shirts) get it first.

    What will be for sale at the official merch booth?
    The PA booth generally stocks a healthy supply of the books , the most popular tee shirts from the website in sizes S-4XL for men and S-2XL for babydoll, some other items limited items such as merch hats and select hoodies (hats are one size, hoodies are unisex sizes S-3XL), and of course the coveted, limited PAX-specific goodies such as tee shirts and/or scarves.

    Will there be a PAX exclusive item?

    Maybe. Follow @Official_PAX twitter and they may give sneak peeks!

    The merch line is longer than longcat! When will it die down?

    There may be a lull on Sunday afternoon, when much of the stock is depleted. Don't worry! The line moves quick and it's a good way to meet other people with pokewalkers/magic cards/beach balls/THAT THING YOU LIKE.

    Why is ITEM X sold out?! I really wanted it!

    A lot of other people wanted it too. Brian the Awesome Merch Master Guy does his best to estimate demand, but he is a genuine meat human. If you really want ITEM X, buy it early and don't wait until the end of the show. If it is not PAX-specific, you can probably find it on the PA Merch website. Last PAX East, when the merch booth ran out of scarves, they implemented an online order system on site. The same MIGHT happen again, but no guarantees.

    I waited in line for a half hour and NOW you're telling me you don't have ITEM X? Sad Boosh.

    This happens sometimes. It could be it sold out while you were waiting in line. It might have been the guy in front of you. It might have been 10 minutes after opening on Friday (in which case there will hopefully be a sign posted). Don't fret. There is plenty of other stuff for you to get. Think ahead and have a Plan B of How To Spend Your Money.

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular

    When do I sign up for tournaments?

    Tournament registration is Friday or Day of. Look out for each departments Tournament thread for specific information. Get there early, most tournaments fill up within an hour or two of PAX opening.
    Hint! Follow @PAX_tourney for more tournament information!

    Will x tournament or event be happening at PAX?

    Possibly, announcements will be made about 4 weeks prior to PAX. Keep an eye on the forums for details! each department that does tournaments will make it's own post.

    What is the Omegathon?

    The Omegathon is a grueling test of "skill" in which 20 randomly selected pre-registered attendees will battle for an amazing prize, in past years, this prize has been an all expenses paid trip to the Tokyo Games Show in JAPAN. They mostly make them play crazy games like Mario Kart, Bananagrams, and Operation for their amusement. If you are not selected to be an Omeganaut, it's still a lot of fun watching and enjoying their torment!

    How do I become an Omeganaut?

    Just check the button that says, "I want to be considered to be an Omeganaut" when you pre-register. Then you just have to hope you are one of the lucky people to get the call. Please NOTE: if you do not get a phone call from Mike or Jerry asking you to be an Omeganaut, then you are not an Omeganaut. There are only 20 for PAX Prime!

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    Should I Bring my Children to PAX?

    PAX is open to all ages, and many parents choose to bring their children and infants, but before you haul little Timmy and Amanda down to the showfloor, a few things to consider:

    - PAX is LOUD. Little ears tend to be sensitive, so take this into consideration if your child doesn't like noisy environments.

    - PAX is CROWDED. People don't tend to look down; be prepared to keep the little ones from being stepped on if they're on the shorter side. This is true of any crowd situation, not just PAX. You will need to be aware of all people at all times. Also, per the preregistration site (Interactive Ticketing), "Strollers are not permitted on the show floor at any time". Perhaps try a front pack?

    - PAX breeds GERMS. Again, true of all crowded/convention situations. PAX Prime '09 saw a fairly large outbreak of H1N1 and other flu strains; keep this in mind before exposing any little ones that might be in concern categories for illness.

    - PAX is full of SWEARING. The typical demographic of PAX, while fairly diverse, does contain a large number of younger people with a tendency swear. Profusely. About everything. If language is a concern for you, be aware that epithets are a time-honoured PAX tradition, and will be overheard everywhere.

    - PAX is FREE for kids 6 and Under. Conversely, PAX is FULL PRICE for kids 7 and older. So, budget accordingly.

    Now, taking everything into consideration, it's up to you! A little planning ahead and your kids can have just as much fun at PAX as everyone else! Just be aware what hurdles there may be, and prepare appropriately!

    I'm under 18. Will I be able to get into a panel for/play the demo of <insert M-Rated game here>?

    It is convention wide policy to follow the ESRB ratings, even if your parents are present. Be aware that some exhibitors may ask you for your ID.
    It should also be noted that there is no way for a minor's guardian to allow the minor to play/view M-Rated content without the guardian physically present for the content; there is no "permission form" or similar thing available. Also, some exhibitors might still not allow minors to view their M-Rated content with the guardian present.

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular

    What should I bring with me to PAX?
    CatBoy wrote:
    I better get this in just so everyone is kinda prepared and in the know of what to bring to PAX or any con that may come their way. (I'm sorry for the huge post, but a lot of people don't know what to bring.)

    The Top Twenty Items Forgotten by Convention Attendees Checklist
    1. Personal Towel (We know the hotel provides them, but if you're sharing a room with several people, this guarantees you your very own towel. Also, if you plan on using a lot of makeup for a costume or dying your hair *and* use hotel towels, you will be charged a hefty fee for damaging hotel property. Please bring your own towels if you plan to do this.) You may also dip the ends in liquid vitamins and suck on the corners when needed.

    * A pretty cool tip involving this is bringing a small clothespin with your name on it to attach to your towel so people can differentiate between yours and theirs. In fact, bring a couple, so you can share with people.

    2. Shampoo and Conditioner (Again, the hotel provides these, but the bottles are quite small. Bringing your own ensures you will have some, especially if you use a lot of shampoo or have long hair.)

    3. Toothbrush and Toothpaste (You'd be amazed at what going three days without brushing tastes like. Gross.)

    4. Deodorant (If you don't bring and use this, don't be surprised when people start edging away from you in packed rooms and theaters. Don't forget the strange looks and cringed noses you'll begin to see.)

    5. Razor and Shaving Cream/Gel

    6. Comb and/or Hairbrush (some people do use both. You'd be surprised.)

    7. One shirt for each day of the convention, plus an extra. (3 days = 4 shirts)

    8. Pants (Same number as shirts.)

    9. Underwear (3 sets, plus an extra.)

    10. Socks (One pair per day plus an extra pair.)

    11. Swimsuit (You never know.)

    12. Jacket or warm sweater

    13. Shoes (If you plan on spending a lot of time dancing or on your feet, make sure you have comfortable shoes with you. Your feet will hurt if you don't have comfy shoes to at least change into.)

    14. Any prescribed medication (Make sure to tell your traveling companions/roommates about any medical needs you may have.)

    15. Tylenol/Aspirin/etc

    16. Photo ID / Driver's License / Checkbook / Car keys

    17. A phone card (Not only is this cheaper than having calls charged to your hotel room, but having several people using one phone can lead to billing confusion with long distance calls. Bring a phone card so you can let your parents/significant other know you made it to the con safely.)

    18. An extra pillow and blanket if several people are staying in your room.

    19. Some non-perishable food from a supermarket (Like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chips, pretzels and bottled water or juice. While there are a lot of restaurants close by, this is an easy way to save money. In addition, you'll be able to have your midnight snack without leaving your room.)

    20. Your best public manners. (You'd be surprised how many people forget to bring these along.)

    I'm flying to PAX, how soon should I book my flight?

    6-8 weeks before your date of travel seem to be the "sweet spot" of prices. However, keep an eye on prices with sites like http://www.kayak.com/ and you can figure out the best price for your flight from there.

    Is it safe to put your DESKTOP PC into an airplane? Can you check it with your airline carrier and see it in once piece at it's destination? Can you ship it to your hotel safely and timely? What other alternatives are there?

    The safest way is driving it and bringing it with you. The next safest is taking it and having it professionally packed, lots of Styrofoam and bubble wrap and shipping it one of the quicker (2-3 day) options as opposed to the 6 day or so ground transport. The absolute worst way is on an airplane. First, it's going to cost you since just about everyone is charging for bags now, second, chances are TSA is going to open whatever you have it carefully packaged in and third, baggage handlers hate you.

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    edited July 2014
    What Hotels are available for booking?
    At this time, Unknown! Once hotel registration is live, this will be updated

    How do I get the PAX discount on my hotel room?
    All information on hotels offering a PAX discount will be available at PAX Hotel Site
    All pricing given is per night

    How much do the hotels cost?
    Until the hotel website goes live, we don't know. However in the past hotel prices have ranged from $180-$210 per night. If you are driving, be aware that hotels will charge you for parking. This ranges from $30-$50 a night.

    What days can you book for at the discounted rate?
    Depends on the hotel! Some have from Tuesday Check-in - the following Wednesday Check-Out (note: There are more rooms available for Fri-Sun than other days)

    Do they charge my credit card when I reserve my room?

    It depends on the hotel; most only use your credit card to hold the room. When you check in, they put a hold on the card you present them at that time for the amount of your stay and when you check out they charge that, plus any billable charges (phone calls, pay per view, room service) to your card at that time. Some hotels have started requiring a deposit equal to one night's stay. If this is the case, it should be clearly noted on the hotel's website.

    How far away are the hotels from the convention center?
    *To be updated once hotel list goes live*

    How many people can stay in one hotel room?

    Most hotels allow four, however be aware when you reserve a room with four people per room, they tack on an additional charge. The Sheraton will charge for every key over 2 per room that you ask for.

    When/where should I book my hotel

    As soon as at PAX hotel site opens registration. Sooner the Better! Watch the forums & http://twitter.com/official_pax for when this happens.

    X Hotel's website says the PAX rate is sold out for date x. What does this mean?

    This means that the hotel will not honour the PAX rate for date x. If you're having trouble with the website, call the hotel.

    What time is check in at these hotels?

    Most hotels have check in at around 3pm. If you're going to be arriving in town later in the evening or at night, be sure to let the hotel know when you make your reservation. If you are arriving early, most hotels will hold your luggage if you want to see the city before check-in time

    I want to find people to share my hotel room, or find people to room with! what should I do?

    Once Hotel Registration goes live, a “Room Share” Thread will be posted.

    Is there any way for me to confirm that the Hotel got my booking and it’s correct?

    Yes! About 2 weeks before PAX, the hotel booking service On Peak will transfer its bookings to the Hotels. Once that’s done you can call the hotel directly and confirm your reservation. This is highly recommended as sometimes OnPeak makes mistakes and it’s better to correct these a couple weeks before PAX vs the day you try to check in.

    zerzhul on
    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    edited July 2014
    San Antonio River Walk

    Much thanks to paxer @Wickersham for this detailed write up!

    Oh God, I can't leave! I might miss something important! But, what is this land you call... this land?!

    Before the big announcement, when people speculated about a PAX in Texas, San Antonio rarely came up. But it really is the perfect choice. It’s bigger than Austin, meaning it can better accommodate a large number of guests; it’s cheaper than Dallas for organizers and guests alike; and the weather is more pleasant than in Houston. It’s very tourist-friendly, tourism being one of the city’s biggest industries, and the convention center is undergoing a major expansion that will make a lot of brand new exhibition space available. San Antonio has attractions for those interested in history, music, art, cuisine and sports, as well as a uniquely multicultural character found in few other cities.

    What's the weather like in San Antonio during PAX?

    I wish I could tell you! The truth is the weather in much of Texas is extremely hard to predict. Temperatures at the end of January can fall as low as the mid twenties; on the other hand, highs in the seventies are not out of the question. Maybe it will be rainy, maybe not. I’d lean on the local forecast in the days immediately prior to your departure, and plan accordingly. Be sure you bring at least one set of winter clothes and one set of spring clothes no matter what, because the weather can change incredibly quickly.

    Is there any free parking downtown?

    Alas, free parking will be extremely hard to come by. My plan, even as a resident, is to get a hotel room within walking distance of the convention and forego the car altogether.

    How much does it cost to park?

    There are a large number of lots and garages in close proximity to the convention center, and on weekends they typically run $5 to $10 for all-day parking. That said, depending on how many people attend PAX South, parking purveyors may increase their prices. The highest I have ever seen charged for parking was $25 for the day, though that was during Fiesta, when attendance reaches the hundreds of thousands.

    Where can I get something to eat in San Antonio?

    The following are all within a short walk or cab ride of the con:
    Fast and cheap: Taco Haven, Whataburger
    Budget Conscious but Willing to Spend: Mi Tierra, La Gloria, Alamo Street Eat Bar
    Willing to Splurge: The Boiler House, Stella Public House, The Monterey, The Granary
    Just Won a Huge Cash Prize at the Omegathon: Restaurant Gwendolyn, Bohanan's

    If I want to leave the River Walk, how do I find my way around on the Transit System?

    VIA Metropolitan Transit

    What are some good places to drink beer with lots of people in San Antonio that are near the Convention Center?

    Again, all within foot or affordable cab range:
    For a cheap-ass beer: Leapin Lizard Pub, Durty Nelly's, Bar America
    For a good glass of wine: The Monterey, Zinc Bistro, the Boiler House
    For a good microbrew: Stella Public house, The Monterey
    For a kickass cocktail: 1919, The Brooklynite, The Esquire Tavern, TBA (that is not a placeholder, TBA is actually the name of the bar)
    Best happy hours: Luke, Liberty Bar, Cured
    Best Ice Houses: The Friendly Spot, La Tuna Ice House

    SmallLady on
    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular

    I'm above the average age of 26 by a decade or more. Will I be the oldest person there?

    No, plenty of the older gaming crowd come out to enjoy PAX as well. You are not alone. PAX is geeks reveling in geekery. Age isn't much of a concern.

    PAX was awesome! I want to see everything next year! Should I apply to be an Enforcer?

    Enforcing means that you are likely to see less, not more, of PAX. When considering becoming an Enforcer it's very important to remember that you go from attending PAX for fun to attending PAX for work, and that has certain implications. Rule #2 of Enforcing is: PAX Is Not For Us - it's for Attendees. (Rule #1, of course, is 'Don't be a Dick'.) If you want to see the maximum number of things at PAX, you should consider coming as an Attendee instead of applying to be an Enforcer. That being said, the below picture is 100% true.

    Should I buy a Nintendo DS/bring my DS to PAX?

    Is anybody going to be doing anything before PAX opens/after PAX closes or ends?
    Yes, there will be tons of stuff going on, keep an eye on threads in this forum to find awesome stuff to do with other PAX-goers.

    A bunch of people are getting together at an area bar, but I'm under 21. Will I still be able to go and hang out if I'm not drinking?

    I actually have no clue on this one. I spent a summer in San Antonio when I was 14 and my Aunt took me to bars all the time. HOW DOES THIS WORK? I DON'T KNOW. Somebody who is local please tell me.

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    edited July 2014
    PAX Costume Weapons policy

    Weapons Check Policies
    All prop weapons brought to the show MUST be approved at the Info Booth as soon as you arrive. We will be looking for the following criteria:

    It cannot fire any sort of projectile. (Nerf guns are only allowed if they have been deactivated and cannot fire.)
    It cannot be an airsoft weapon. (Yes, even if it’s deactivated.)
    It cannot be sharp or pointy enough to cut or pierce someone with moderate pressure. This includes all real swords, daggers and knives. It also includes ceramic blades, needles, syringes and anything that can pierce (for example, a Little Sister syringe made of wood would not be allowed)
    Upon approval, your weapon and badge will be tagged and cataloged.
    AaronC wrote: »
    The method of checking will be a booth (location TBA) which will be staffed by from 1 hour prior to the show to the close of Expo Hall. All attendees who have costume weapons will directed there. The Security Management Team will also be checking the exterior line and the expo line before the doors open to alleviate any delay for people who show up before the show opens.

    Anyone who has a costume weapon needs to be verified even if its an allowed costume weapon.

    Attendees who weapons are allowed will have one or two methods to show that they have been checked and Ok'd. Any Enforcer can check to see if the costume weapons have been checked.

    If an attendee's weapon is ok they will either get a zip tie (color TBA) placed on the weapon and/or a sticker on the back of their badge with a short description of the item and the name of the Enforcer who checked it.

    If there are any questions, please feel free to ask them here.


    zerzhul on
    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular

    I just bought a pass on craigslist / ebay, how do I know if it's legit?

    This really won't apply until after PAX SOUTH passes sell out, but I wanted to put this out there anyways. If you purchase your pass from a second hand source, you are putting yourself at risk of purchasing a counterfeit pass. Second hand sources also include this forum, which is why there will no longer be any pass selling or buying here.

    Please be aware that there may/will be repercussions for attempting to sell or buy badges on the forums.

    Remember, buying a pass from anybody except Penny-Arcade means you are potentially buying a counterfeit pass which can be confiscated and you will be asked to leave the show.

    Last PAX Prime, there was a Badge Checking Station so you could check the badge before purchasing while AT PAX. However, this won't help you much if you've already paid for the badge and it is counterfeit.


    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular

    READ IT.



    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    PotatoemanPotatoeman Registered User regular
    I live in San Antonio, I can provide some insight on the SA general questions.

    What's the weather like in San Antonio during PAX?

    We honestly won't know until it gets to be January. Usually, it gets quite cold even though we're in the south. It fluctuates very wildly though, it could be anywhere from 30-80 degrees. This past January, on PAX weekend, it was from 30-40 Low temps, and High temps were from 40 to 80 between 3 days. It's impossible to tell, but it WILL be cold. San Antonio is very weird during the early spring.

    Is there any free parking downtown?

    I've worked downtown in the past, and during holidays there is sometimes free parking, but goodluck. It's always quite packed, and you will almost certainly have to pay to park anywhere close to PAX. There are tons of options though; we have many parking lots and garages.

    How much does it cost to park?

    It varies wildly. When I commuted, I always parked in a lot that was $8 for 12 hours, and was always open in the morning. Garages will cost more, but shouldn't be over $20 for a day.

    Where can I get something to eat in San Antonio?

    Downtown has tons of food options. There's cheap quick stop places and fast food if you just want to stop and go, but there are a VAST variety of options downtown around the river walk, and much of it is quite good. The closer you get to the Riverwalk though, the pricier it will get. There's a lot of different types of food, but we're huge on BBQ and Mexican food.

    How hard is it to get around San Antonio? Will I need a car?

    You'll be fine to stick around downtown, unless you want to go to a supermarket. We don't have a lot of big grocery places within walking distance, just very light shopping areas. Also, there honestly isn't a whole lot to do outside of downtown San Antonio, so I wouldn't really bother renting a car to sight see, as you can walk or taxi around downtown pretty easily.

    If I want to leave the River Walk, how do I find my way around on the Transit System?

    We've recently updated our transit a bit, so the buses are much better than before. However, that's pretty much it. We don't have as nice transit as Seattle, no trains or rails to traverse the city. You'll need to scout a hotel for bus information, or use taxi service. Either way, I don't personally recommend it.

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    DeciusDecius I'm old! I'm fat! I'M BLUE!Registered User regular
    It would appear that OnPeak has locked the hotel booking system to one hotel reservation per email address, as I have to use a different email address if I want a second reservation to cover the days I'll be there. Otherwise it just recognizes my existing name/email combo, prompts me to login, and then just shows my existing reservation.

    Just FYI I guess.

    I never finish anyth
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    quaziquazi Registered User new member
    edited July 2014
    Quick question that I feel like is mostly answered but I just wanted to be more specific: Does the name of the purchaser/customer used for online registration have to match any of the attendees? For instance if passes were bought as a gift by somebody not going or a parent buying passes for their children?

    quazi on
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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited July 2014
    No it does not, HOWEVER, if you are picking up at will call, the person picking up has to match the registration. Also only the person who paid for the registration is eligible for the omegathon.

    zerzhul on
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    KylsixKylsix The Redneck Gamer San Antonio, TXRegistered User new member
    Advice on weather for San Antonio (and the SW US in general): The weather will range from 30 to 70 degrees F, and it will often make that switch within a 24 hour period. Average temperatures in January are in the mid-40s, though I've definitely seen them as high as the mid-70s and below freezing. Be prepared for that. Because you'll be in a convention center, bring something you're okay with carrying all day. I've made the mistake of wearing my totally awesome and warm jacket to a convention only to be burdened with carrying it all day.

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    PathosPrimePathosPrime Registered User new member
    SmallLady wrote: »
    I have an amazing idea for a panel!! Who should I contact?!?

    if you just have an idea email pax_panels@paxsite.com with your pitch! If you actually want to run your own panel head over to panels.paxsite.com with your proposal. If accepted you and your participants will receive a complimentary Speaker Pass for PAX South 2015. Good luck!

    Ah, hello. Wanted to ask, panels.paxsite.com seems to be giving php errors and saying panel submissions are closed. Did submissions really close this quickly or are you still accepting them?

    Ryan "Pathos" Prime, Technical Coordinator
    Vitamin H Productions - http://VitaminH.info
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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    For PAX South specifically, panel submissions are not yet open.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Ok, question answered. That site is no longer used exactly, but it still shouldn't be broken the way it is.

    When pax south panel submissions are open, it will be at http://south.panels.paxsite.com

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    PathosPrimePathosPrime Registered User new member
    Ah, thank you. Any estimate on when submissions will be open, and will it be announced on Twitter @PennyArcadeFeed when they are?

    Ryan "Pathos" Prime, Technical Coordinator
    Vitamin H Productions - http://VitaminH.info
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    AmberxAltF4AmberxAltF4 Durham, NCRegistered User regular
    Just for clarification-

    The post says
    Friday: 10am - 12am
    Saturday: 10am - 12am
    Sunday: 10am - 12am

    But http://south.paxsite.com/schedule indicates that it closes at 6pm on Sunday (like East). I'm guessing that the original post was copy/paste'd from Prime and that the south schedule site is correct, but I just wanted to be sure.

    Trade me pins: Lanyard!

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    MegatinMegatin Registered User regular
    The Expo Hall hours are from 10am to 6pm, but the rest of the convention (panels, concerts, free-play, etc) is open later.

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    SmallLadySmallLady Registered User regular
    Just for clarification-

    The post says
    Friday: 10am - 12am
    Saturday: 10am - 12am
    Sunday: 10am - 12am

    But http://south.paxsite.com/schedule indicates that it closes at 6pm on Sunday (like East). I'm guessing that the original post was copy/paste'd from Prime and that the south schedule site is correct, but I just wanted to be sure.

    You are correct! I'll fix it! :)

    "we're just doing what smalllady told us to do" - @Heels
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    whypick1whypick1 PAX [E] Info Booth Manager ~2' from an LCDRegistered User regular
    Ah, thank you. Any estimate on when submissions will be open, and will it be announced on Twitter @PennyArcadeFeed when they are?

    @Official_PAX would be a better bet.

    Is it PAX <insert nearest future PAX here> yet?
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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    yeah, the official pax twitter is http://twitter.com/official_pax

    pennyarcadefeed is not an official PA twitter account as far as I know.

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    Ezra355Ezra355 Registered User regular
    Okay so this will be my first PAX adventure yay! :D anyways I was lucky to snag a 3 day pass but my friend wasnt so lucky. Would buying a one day pass for each day (even though slightly more expensive) work? just curious. Thanks! :D

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    darkinferodarkinfero BOP-IT Malden, MARegistered User regular
    Ezra355 wrote: »
    Okay so this will be my first PAX adventure yay! :D anyways I was lucky to snag a 3 day pass but my friend wasnt so lucky. Would buying a one day pass for each day (even though slightly more expensive) work? just curious. Thanks! :D
    That will work, it will act as a 3 day passes but cost more. I hope you enjoy your first pax.

    My Pin collection
    Pinny Pal since PAX Prime 2013
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    YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    And in case you were wondering. No, 3 single-day passes cannot be converted to a 3-day one. I only say it because I see a ton of posts asking about that.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Ezra355 wrote: »
    Okay so this will be my first PAX adventure yay! :D anyways I was lucky to snag a 3 day pass but my friend wasnt so lucky. Would buying a one day pass for each day (even though slightly more expensive) work? just curious. Thanks! :D
    It is equivalent, yes.

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    gunadicgunadic Registered User regular
    If I want to leave the River Walk, how do I find my way around on the Transit System?

    VIA's page on downtown bus service.

    Also, SA has a pretty robust bike-share program as well with tons of stations right around the Convention Center and Hemisfair park (which is just south of the center proper). Granted, getting a bike/empty stall might be difficult when PAX is in full swing. That said, biking around downtown is pretty easy and safe. There are signs pointing to the nearest docking stations all over, and traffic is never really an issue given the cow-pathy nature of the roads. Also note that bikes are allowed on the Riverwalk EXCEPT for the downtown core (It's not bike friendly with steps and narrow sidewalks anyways) so its an easy way to get to and from downtown if you're staying in the Pearl/River North area.

    A bunch of people are getting together at an area bar, but I'm under 21. Will I still be able to go and hang out if I'm not drinking?

    Many bars in SA are also restaurants (Bar 1919 and The Esquire fall into this category) and its up to the wait staff to card. Also, a number of places in SA are open air yards (The Friendly Spot and The Beethoven) so I wouldn't worry too much about it.

    Don't eat on the Riverwalk. With the exception of some higher end places, most of the food is a ripoff. That said, that doesn't mean that there isn't any food to be had in the downtown area. Here are a couple places that I really really dig.

    Walking Distance:
    - Whataburger: Open 24 Hours. Late night(after 11)/breakfast? Get the Honeybutter Chicken Biscuit.
    - River Center Food Court: Your typical mall food court. On the Riverwalk, great for people watching and listening to Pan Pipes.
    - Alamo Street Eat Bar: Food Truck park, good beer selection, 10 minute walk from the convention center
    - Tre Trattoria: Some of the best Italian/Pasta in the city.
    - The Monterrey: American Gastropub in Southtown, great outdoor seating area.
    - Fritte: Belgian Food, also in Southtown.
    - Hot Joy: Hipster Asian Fusion. Really, really good.
    - The Beethoven: A side of San Antonio most people never see, or even think about. Old school German beer garden in Southtown.

    Further afield:
    - The Pearl Brewery: Walk up the riverwalk towards the Museum Reach. Big new complex that has a number of restaurants: La Glora (Mexican Streetfood), The Granary (Micro-brewery and modern BBQ), Green (Vegetarian, closed Saturdays) and more places I haven't had a chance to try. Also has a Farmers Market on Saturdays if you're into that.
    - Taco Taco Cafe: Local institution on Hildebrand. Parking is a bit of a pain, but they've got my favorite breakfast tacos in the city (I'm a Trinity kid, so sue me.)
    - Central Market: Upscale Grocery store with great prepared foods. Prices for normal grocery stuff also fairly reasonable.

    I'm going to be in town a couple days early, what else is there to do in San Antonio?
    - Theme Parks: Six Flags and SeaWorld are probably going to be closed. Sorry :neutral_face:
    - Outdoorsy Stuff: The Sunken Garden, Botanical Gardens and Zoo are all a quick cab ride from Downtown. The Riverwalk also extends south about 9 miles along the river if you want to go check out the Missions.

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    MidanMidan Registered User regular
    edited July 2014
    This will be my first time going to pax well any big convention in general and I have a question about the cosplay I wanted to do. My costume would have a small metal pale I was going to put a handle on and wear like a messenger bag. My question is: is metal objects like buckets allowed? Or should I find a different pale?

    Midan on
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    GhostDanGhostDan Registered User regular
    You should be fine with a bucket. Follow wheaton's rule.

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    MidanMidan Registered User regular
    Could you tell me what Wheaton's rule is? I haven't seen that one yet.

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    MattauiMattaui Dallas, TXRegistered User regular
    Guess I wouldn't be so quick to steer folks away from wandering along the Riverwalk and eating there, but maybe I'm just the sort of tourist from DFW that keeps those places in business. It has gotten more expensive in recent years, but there's tons of selection.

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    Ezra355Ezra355 Registered User regular
    So when does the schedule and announcements usually come available? such as special guests, panels, and such :o or is everything usually a surprise when you get there?

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Midan wrote: »
    Could you tell me what Wheaton's rule is? I haven't seen that one yet.
    Wheatons Law states: Don't be a dick!

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Ezra355 wrote: »
    So when does the schedule and announcements usually come available? such as special guests, panels, and such :o or is everything usually a surprise when you get there?
    About a month prior to the con

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    WickershamWickersham Registered User regular
    Mattaui wrote: »
    Guess I wouldn't be so quick to steer folks away from wandering along the Riverwalk and eating there, but maybe I'm just the sort of tourist from DFW that keeps those places in business. It has gotten more expensive in recent years, but there's tons of selection.

    I would qualify your statement by adding that a walk along the river is a worthwhile experience, though the downtown Riverwalk is crowded with tourists and the restaurants along the river, in my opinion, aren't the best use of your diner's dollar. There are fantastic restaurants a block off the river, like Luke, The Esquire, and Biga on the Banks, that I would recommend instead. Or you could walk along the river at Museum Reach, north of downtown, where there are fewer people and better scenery. It's also right by the Pearl Brewery, which is full of phenomenal restaurants. But hey, some people like the touristy stuff, and if that's you then go for it!

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    BekerBeker Child's Play Program Director SeattleRegistered User, Penny Arcade Staff regular
    I've only ever been to San Antonio a couple times, and always in the summer. How much Tourist activity will be happening\available in January? Do things shut down, just slow down?

This discussion has been closed.