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First PAX! Anyone have suggestions?

Sergeant_SlashSergeant_Slash Registered User regular
edited May 31 in PAX West
Hey all!

I'm heading down to PAX West from Canada with a couple friends, we've got our tickets, we've got our hotel, but none of us have been to PAX before! Any veteran PAX attenders have some advice for a couple clueless Canucks? Places we need to eat? Things we need to bring? Booths we simply have to visit? Booths we really shouldn't?

We'd love to hear from you!

EDIT:

Thanks all, I've heard some great things so far! I might as well start a list of the responses I've got seeing as I'd guess there may be some more first timers checking this thread out!

Here's what I've got;

* Bring a small backpack or shoulder bag
* Bring lot's of water
* There's game music concerts! I didn't know about that and it sounds awesome!
* Scout out where you want to go on day 1 then run there when the gates open on later days
* Bring snacks (healthy ones too)
* Bring a handheld game system
* Hand sanitizer and deodorant
* Feel free to talk, people are friendly
* Look for the people in bright blue shirts, they're the PAX enforcers and will be super helpful
* Have an emergency plan, hopefully you don't use it but better safe than sorry
* Wear comfy socks and shoes, you'll be on your feet all day
* Don't forget the Indie games!

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Posts

  • sediroxsedirox Registered User regular
    There should be a Guide to PAX thread going up soon with some tips for first timers.

    Pack essentials: toiletries, clothes etc etc
    During the con: carry a bottle of water and some snacks, a portable gaming device (Switch, 3DS, Vita), extra chargers.
    If you are waiting in line for a demo, don’t be afraid to talk to others in line or to the devs. Everyone at PAX is super friendly and willing to strike up a conversation.

    I can’t remember which booths were a must see last year but I personally like to do stuff that was shown at E3 that the devs brought to PAX.

    Sergeant_Slash
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    Highly suggest a small backpack (sling bag) but make sure it's no too bulky. Put some non-perishable snacks in the bag to keep yourself up during your crazy time.

    You'll want a water bottle with a filter in it, hydration is incredibly important.

    I highly suggest hand sanitizer. Use it any time you touch anything other people have been using (controllers, tvs, books, etc...). It's also a good icebreaker for talking with people.

    Comfortable shoes and socks are a MUST! You'll be on your feet most of each day.

    Eat at least one highly nutritious meal per day, you'll thank yourself!

    Those are the immediate things that come to mind. That and HAVE A BLAST!

    Sergeant_Slash
  • Nfan10039Nfan10039 SaskatchewanRegistered User regular
    Hey! Welcome to the PAX Forums! I'm from Canada and manage the Challenge Coins for PAX West. This is my 3rd time going (1st time was in 2015, 2nd time was in 2016). Every time I go, I always go to the concerts. Hearing video game music is always awesome(at least to me)! There will be a schedule posted shortly about all the events, panels and other stuff happening at PAX. It is tough to do it all, and you have to really pick and choose what events you want to go to. Make sure you leave yourself room for lunch and supper. People get so busy, that they forget to eat. I was one of those people in 2015, but luckily I was able to find a 24 hour eatery. It was a bit of a walk, but I needed food. Another thing to remember, is that there will be games and booths that showcase some games from E3. Since some of these games aren't out and people are hyped to play, it's important to scout out the area the first day, so that you can run to the area the moment the WSCC opens its doors. You can do everything at PAX that most gamers would want. Attending panels and playing unreleased games is but a small part of PAX. You can eat, play board games, listen to video game music at the concerts, and anything else you could want. You could even explore the great city that is Seattle if you want. Just remember that your time is limited and it is impossible to do it all.

    dvsc4pf0lp8i.png
    Just a nerd into anything Nintendo, anime, MCU, Star Wars, and board games/card games.
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    IncreaseBlueSergeant_Slash
  • AshrackAshrack Enforcer Deputy Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    Hi! There will be lots and LOTS of advice and things to read for first timers. The show is HUGE, spread across a few city blocks and 4 days long. Take care of yourself first, physically and mentally, do what you need to be happy, safe and keep on having fun. Have a backup plan if you get separated, and a basic emergency plan. Not saying there are lots of emergencies - but would hate for your first time to end badly!
    Then, stay active, read, ask questions, don't plan too much, and when you get there, if you need help, find an Enforcer in the bright blue shirts - we're here to help.

    Sergeant_Slash
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    Ashrack wrote: »
    Enforcer in the bright blue shirts - we're here to help.

    PAX is an incredible community (last year was my first PAX, this will be my second) and every interaction I had with people was an awesomely positive one. That goes twice for the Enforcers, such incredible people.

    Sergeant_Slash
  • SweetCosmicPopeSweetCosmicPope Just Some Dude Lake Stevens, WARegistered User regular
    edited May 31
    Went to my first PAX last year. Let me echo that you should bring water and snacks, and games to play. Depending on how long you're going, bringing board games could be a waste of space. We did one day last year, and my son was dying to sit and play some D and D or pokemon cards, but we just didn't have that much time to sit still.

    Cheesecake Factory is right across the street, and subway is right outside, but the lines for both get ridiculous.

    Oh, and since nobody else mentioned it, do yourself and everyone a favor and wear deodorant and bring extra.

    Edit: I wanted to add to this, as well. Don't overlook the indie games! I went to PAX on a mission. I knew I wanted to play at the Nintendo booth, and I knew I wanted to play Cuphead, and see what else MS had up their sleeve, and the Sony booth. I got to play a ton of the big name stuff, but I think I was surprised to find that I had the most fun playing upcoming games that I'd never even heard of before.

    SweetCosmicPope on
    Sergeant_Slash
  • Sergeant_SlashSergeant_Slash Registered User regular
    Indie games are one of the things I'm looking forward to the most! Glad to hear there's a strong presence!

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  • DreamwriterDreamwriter Registered User regular
    Indie games have a *very* strong presence there. The "indie megabooth" is just as large as any of the huge booths from Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft.

    If you need to use a cash machine, the ones right around the convention center sometimes run out of cash. One block over (7th and Pine) is a Barnes & Noble bookstore, go inside, downstairs, and out the back, and there's a cash machine there.

    There's a convenience store across the street from the convention center entrance, useful for snacks/drinks, cheaper than buying drinks at the convention center

    The Gameworks arcade (across the street from the convention center) is open until 1am (12 on Sunday), and that part of downtown is perfectly safe late at night. At 10pm they kick out kids under 18.

    Your first year, you won't get to see or do everything you want. There just isn't time, many panels overlap, many games have hour-long lines to play. However, you will find other things you didn't plan on, that are just as good or even better. The first year is a great time to explore and experiment.

    vespachica
  • Sergeant_SlashSergeant_Slash Registered User regular
    Couple questions if ya don't mind? Should I be bringing a decent amount of cash in, or can I expect to be able to use credit most places? (I know that in particular is supposed to be a pretty big difference between Canada and the US, up here I've legitimately seen a lemonade stand that took tap credit). And just to clarify, you're allowed to bring your own food and drinks in? I know some places don't allow that to make money off of food sales
    Indie games have a *very* strong presence there. The "indie megabooth" is just as large as any of the huge booths from Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft.

    If you need to use a cash machine, the ones right around the convention center sometimes run out of cash. One block over (7th and Pine) is a Barnes & Noble bookstore, go inside, downstairs, and out the back, and there's a cash machine there.

    There's a convenience store across the street from the convention center entrance, useful for snacks/drinks, cheaper than buying drinks at the convention center

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  • whypick1whypick1 PAX [E] Info Booth Manager ~2' from an LCDRegistered User regular
    Most places take credit.
    You can bring in (a reasonable amount) of outside food and drink. There's even a couple food vendors inside the building, just expect their lines to be loooooooooooooooooooooooooooong during the show.

    Is it PAX <insert nearest future PAX here> yet?
  • DreamwriterDreamwriter Registered User regular
    edited June 1
    Yeah, you don’t really need cash in Seattle these days except to pay for the bus or tip hotel cleaning staff. Merch booths at the convention also take credit cards. Though if your bank is paranoid, they may flag card purchases as fraud because the merch booths charge as if you were at their home state, so to your bank’s fraud department it looks like you’re spending money all over the US.

    The convention center is fine with bringing in your own food/drink, but note the PAX “main theater” (where the biggest panels are) is in a concert hall a ways away from the convention center (assuming the location hasn’t changed this year), and you’re not allowed to eat or drink in the actual concert area (you can have food/drink while waiting in line beforehand though).

    Dreamwriter on
  • ctiwolfctiwolf Registered User regular
    Sounds like your on the right track as far as preparedness goes. Good shoes and a change of socks during the day goes a long ways but then youll have a sweatty sock in your bag if you dont bring a baggy but feels awesome. if you are going all day a personal charger is a must for playing video games in line with portable devices and your phone by the end. If your doing more of the handheld lounge a power strip never goes awry. Scout out twitter for cool things going on for after hours. Other than that downtown area by the convention center has ok food but nothing to write home about so unless you want to head a bit your going to get over priced food that you can get cheaper anywhere else. Hope you have a great time and meet lots of cool people.

  • ctiwolfctiwolf Registered User regular
    Almost forgot the 521 rule. Plan on five hours of sleep two meals a day but three is better as some people get hangry and one shower for other peoples comfort. The rule is unwritten but should be law

    vespachicaanettie76
  • Rhea_starstormRhea_starstorm Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    Small thing that makes a huge difference imo bring a water bottle. The convention center has lots of fountains and bottled water is ridiculously expensive in the convention center/nearby.

    vespachicaanettie76
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular

    Your first year, you won't get to see or do everything you want. There just isn't time, many panels overlap, many games have hour-long lines to play. However, you will find other things you didn't plan on, that are just as good or even better. The first year is a great time to explore and experiment.

    In fact, large popular events are intentionally scheduled opposite each other to help manage the crowds. Simultaneous one will be in the Sheraton, one in the Westin, and another in the Hyatt.

    vespachica
  • DashDDashD Dread Pirate Chef Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    On the note about comfy shoes and socks..

    Make sure your shoes are good for walking and just standing, as you will be doing quite a bit of both. And for the socks, bring two pairs for every day and change them at some point mid-day. Your feet will last much longer.

    Also, if you are super attached to canvas sneakers (Chucks being the most common) but find them uncomfortable for long periods of standing/walking, I suggest trying PF Flyers. I have high arches and cannot wear Chucks for more than an hour or so, but PF Flyers have become my go-to shoes for all conventions. They are fantastic.

    "Brilliant! Oh wait, if we were meant to fly, we would have been born with little bags of nuts."
    "Pinky, you are a little bag of nuts."
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  • littlemisslionlittlemisslion Bay Area, CARegistered User new member
    edited June 1
    Welcome to your first PAX! This will be my third year attending and these are some of the tips we picked up...
    • We have camelbak backpacks - good for storage, snacks and we have the water bladder so we stay hydrated all day. If you get the waterpak, make sure to get the cover for the water nozzle!
    • Hand sanitizer - I always purchase the naturals one so it wont dry out your hands as much but it's per preference.
    • Walking/Hiking shoes - Our first year, it POURED rain and my trail runners kept my feet dry. Not to mention, our group walks 10mi-15mi a day while at the convention and attending surrounding events.
    • Buying at PAX: Certain merch sells out quickly, mostly from the PAX merch booth, but usually you'll be safe waiting a day or two before buying. If you're buying big stuff, wait until the end of the day so you don't have to carry it around.
    • Agree on meeting spots - You will most likely not stick together as a group as many people have different things they want to do.. Pick a meeting time and location ahead of time! Cellular reception at the convention center is usually overloaded and most of the time, it will drain your battery before sending a text.
    • BEWARE of solicitors - My first year was HORRIBLE but last year, it was much better. There are some people who "giveaway" their CD's or mixtapes to con patrons but then try to make you pay for them. They can be a little aggressive at times, just be mindful of it and say no thank you.
    • Most importantly, HAVE FUN! There is so much to do, see and eat in Seattle.

    Enjoy your trip with your friends and see you at PAX!

    littlemisslion on
    IncreaseBlue
  • vespachicavespachica SeattleRegistered User regular
    Pretty much for anyone hawking wares or pamphlets outside the convention center I just pretend I don't hear them or don't speak English. I'm not obligated - and neither are you - to talk to nor acknowledge anyone I don't want to.

    ufq9gj8383nh.png

    littlemisslionDruidsFlame
  • midnamidna Greater Seattle AreaRegistered User regular
    I've been attending PAX West every year since 2012, so this is my 7th year in a row (I can't get my counter working in my signature - how do??). I totally agree with what everyone is saying so far, especially about the snacks and hand sanitizer. I would even go so far as to bring a couple of hand towelette cleaning wipe things - most places wipe the controllers after someone tries something, but there are a few indie booths where that is just not always possible. So if you for sure notice that a booth did not wipe their controllers between players, you could probably give it a quick wipe.

    I totally agree about snacks. Crackers, fruit, or anything that will keep okay in your backpack for 4-5 hours is a good idea. But at some point you might want lunch. I HIGHLY recommended skipping anything within a 5 block radius of the Convention Center, or even more. It will be overcrowded, and it will take a long time to get food or even a table. Sometimes even the Starbucks will simply run out of food due to the crowd size. Your best bet is to take our handy-dandy bus tunnel down to the International District, or take our light rail to Capitol Hill. You'll need exact change for the bus, as they don't take cards. The bus tunnel actually stops at the Convention Center directly across from the Paramount Theater (it will be in your convention program - the Paramount Theater holds some events for PAX West.); just make sure you're going south towards the International District. You can take any bus going south in the tunnel, as it doesn't turn anywhere else, and the buses are forced to stop at every stop in the tunnel (it goes Convention Center Stop > Westlake Stop > University Street Stop > Pioneer Square Stop > International District Stop). This makes travelling very easy. I can get from my work in Pioneer Square to Westlake or the Convention Center within ~7 minutes. I would recommend keeping your wits about you, however. The area can be a little sketchy, but if you just keep your bags closed and close to you, you shouldn't have an issue (I'm a 23 year old girl who goes to the ID all the time alone. It's mostly sketchy at night.)

    The International District has a lot of good Asian food, and an Uwajimaya, which is a local Japanese grocery store. Luckily the one in the International District has a really good Asian cafeteria, where you can get chicken curry katsu, a banh mi, crepes, yakisoba, and a lot more. It's all really affordable (around $5-$12 per plate), and very quick. It would probably only take you 30-40 minutes to get there, eat, and then ride back up, as opposed to waiting 30-40 minutes just to get a table and your order taken.

    Your other option is go to north to Capitol Hill. Capitol Hill has good bars, and pricier restaurants than the International District. It's good for bar hopping, if you want to do that after the exhibition hall closes. You'll need to find the Westlake station, which is, incidentally, the same tunnel you would take to go to the International District (but going north). The light rail does not stop at the Convention Center station, so don't go there if you plan on taking the light rail anywhere. It's just one stop up on the light rail. You'll need to purchase a ticket before you get on - they have ticket dispensers on the upper floors of the station (not down at the tunnel).

    Sorry this is so long!! I just figure it's better to have more information than less when it's your first PAX. Hopefully the lunch thing will help. Have a good time!!!

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  • DracilDracil Registered User regular
    If you can afford to spend $100+ I would recommend going to Sushi Kashiba for some really good sushi. It's a thing my friends and I do when we visit Seattle. Taking a pic of the bill is almost a tradition!

    I think lately they've been doing some sort of game thing with their app (last year and 3 years ago I saw them, didn't go 2 years ago). This is rather hit and miss because cell reception can be quite terrible.

    Popular panels can fill up early (Markiplier was full like 3 hours before he was supposed to start I think). Linecon everywhere so bring something to do. Make use of the game library! It's a fun thing to do when the exhibit hall shuts down if you got friends. A portable battery is very useful at most cons.

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  • midnamidna Greater Seattle AreaRegistered User regular
    Dracil wrote: »

    Popular panels can fill up early (Markiplier was full like 3 hours before he was supposed to start I think). Linecon everywhere so bring something to do. Make use of the game library! It's a fun thing to do when the exhibit hall shuts down if you got friends. A portable battery is very useful at most cons.

    On this note, some people bring little camping, fold-up stools to the con. I personally don't (I just sit on the ground), but it's an idea.

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    Hoboking006DruidsFlame
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    midna wrote: »
    On this note, some people bring little camping, fold-up stools to the con. I personally don't (I just sit on the ground), but it's an idea.

    I brought one with me last year, and I did actually find it useful when I was willing to wait in a few of the huge lines (which I generally didn't want to do much because it was my first PAX and there was a LOT of other things I wanted to do). I'm currently pondering if I want to bring it again or not.

  • Sergeant_SlashSergeant_Slash Registered User regular
    midna wrote: »
    Sorry this is so long!! I just figure it's better to have more information than less when it's your first PAX. Hopefully the lunch thing will help. Have a good time!!!

    Oh man don't be sorry about that! (Now you're sounding like the Canadian haha) That is fantastically helpful, and we are almost certainly going to follow a bunch of that!

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    midna
  • DuelLadySDuelLadyS Registered User regular
    Leave some space in your luggage for swag/souvenirs. Depending on what you think you might buy, a foldable bag might be a good idea.

    Bring a backup USB battery to re-charge your phone or other important tech away from your hotel room.

    Bring a power strip. A full hotel room means lots of phones & things getting charged.

    Make use of restaurant reservation apps to prevent long waits for meals.

  • DracilDracil Registered User regular
    edited June 2
    Right! A power strip is another good thing I always pack. The portable stool thing I've never done myself. But maybe it's because I'm not completely averse to just sitting on the floor. A stool may be a great place to put your Switch on though.

    Dracil on
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  • JaysonFourJaysonFour Classy Monster Kitteh Registered User regular
    I've never been to PAX, but I've been to a few conventions, and I always share the same advice:

    -Pack one outfit for each day, then pack one extra outfit and double that number of socks.

    -Please, remember to leave yourself enough time for the biological things in life: leave yourself enough time to eat, drink, hit the facilities (please wash your hands, everyone remembers the swine flu epidemic from a few years ago), and for the love of anything, leave yourself enough energy to bathe, preferably nightly. You don't want to be that person, do you?

    -Eat. If you manage a solid breakfast, the less likely you'll be to binge on expensive on-site food, and if you get a solid dinner, you're not going to be tempted to buy overpriced snacks. And no, a handful of crap from the snack machine does not a meal make. Also, you'll feel more energetic if you're not running on garbage food.

    -If you need things to help you stay awake, there ought to be a market or gas station nearby where you can buy things like energy drinks or energy shots instead of pounding down soda- or better yet, hit up a Wal-Mart and buy a bunch for cheap (you can get a ten-pack of energy shots for eighteen bucks- less than half of the cost of buying them at a gas station!)

    -Get plenty of sleep! Not everyone will be able to do the late night/early morning thing and run the entire convention on twelve to sixteen hours of total sleep. If you have to, budget extra time in the morning unless there's an event that you absolutely can't miss.

    -Leave time for looking around! If you stuff your schedule, you miss the best part of a convention like this- wandering around, checking out booths, and meeting awesome people! Pack a handheld or some card game decks (Magic or Pokemon are good ideas), and just stroll around looking at stuff!

    -Snacks are good, but pack the right snacks. Sugary garbage will just leave you hungry again and spike your sugar to make you tired. My usual go-tos are Odwalla bars and soft beef jerky, with a bottle of water to wash it down.

    -If you're going to buy art, have a way to either store said art or transport it with you- like poster tubes, binders with plastic pages, etc.

    -If you're buying anything else, either have a way to haul said purchase back to your room or have a way to haul it with you.

    -Pack the night before the day you leave, but leave out enough stuff so you can shower, bathroom, and then relax for a few hours before you take off and just shove the rest of it into a bag.

    -Bring your own bags. Otherwise you'll have to buy a bag from somewhere in town, and they'll happily charge an arm and a leg.

    -As far as meds, pack stuff like tooth pain reliever and other situational things just in case- better to have it and not need it than bust a tooth on a popcorn kernel and be in agony until you get home or have to search out an emergency dentist. Refill prescriptions before you go and take extra, just in case.

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    IncreaseBlue
  • kaZombiekaZombie AlbertaRegistered User regular
    I'm coming down from canada for my first pax also! Me and my friend grabbed fri and sat tickets. That exchange rate is too crummy to do a whole weekend.

    Me and my friend are both cosplayers. Would people suggest skipping over the cosplay for our first year? What is the cosplay scene like with PAX west?

  • Nathan WindNathan Wind Colorado Springs, CORegistered User regular
    The more cosplayers the better. Gives everyone something to look at while in line all day.

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  • vespachicavespachica SeattleRegistered User regular
    I'm seriously thinking of a portable stool this year although they seem like a pain to carry around. I'm getting too old to sit on the ground.

    ufq9gj8383nh.png

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  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    vespachica wrote: »
    I'm seriously thinking of a portable stool this year although they seem like a pain to carry around. I'm getting too old to sit on the ground.

    Just get a slingbag that can fit the stool inside of it.

  • H4W7DuhmanH4W7Duhman Registered User regular
    KopeAcetic wrote: »
    Ashrack wrote: »
    Enforcer in the bright blue shirts - we're here to help.

    PAX is an incredible community (last year was my first PAX, this will be my second) and every interaction I had with people was an awesomely positive one. That goes twice for the Enforcers, such incredible people.

    Glad you can say that man, last year was my first PAX and the one enforcer I talked to was not polite whatsoever

  • 10KStreams10KStreams Minnesota, USARegistered User regular
    If you have a 3DS, I can't over emphasize how awesome it is to bring that with StreetPass running. You can't clear through the Miis fast enough!

    RiDEH4W7Duhmananettie76vespachicaKeroan
  • Hoboking006Hoboking006 Registered User regular
    edited June 5
    Alot of good suggestions have already been mentioned but theres one thing I've found useful for any con. Physical Conditioning.

    You got those comfy shoes, but are you used to being on your feet for 6 hours straight? You packed light but thats still 15 lb of weight on your back that your not used to. You brought snacks, but if your used to eating two full meals a day can you be comfortable subsisting on a bunch of peanut granolla bars and tap water?

    In the month leading up to the con try and walk around your block for an hour with a couple of books in your pack, if it's easy ramp up your pace, time, weight, go up and down stairs, etc. Regardless of your physical fitness level, directly practicing your con routine before hand can make life alot easier.

    Hoboking006 on
    May PAX be upon you.
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  • IncreaseBlueIncreaseBlue Registered User regular
    edited June 6
    Alot of good suggestions have already been mentioned but theres one thing I've found useful for any con. Physical Conditioning.

    You got those comfy shoes, but are you used to being on your feet for 6 hours straight? You packed light but thats still 15 lb of weight on your back that your not used to. You brought snacks, but if your used to eating two full meals a day can you be comfortable subsisting on a bunch of peanut granolla bars and tap water?

    In the month leading up to the con try and walk around your block for an hour with a couple of books in your pack, if it's easy ramp up your pace, time, weight, go up and down stairs, etc. Regardless of your physical fitness level, directly practicing your con routine before hand can make life alot easier.

    Following up on this, I have slowly introduced cardio into my regimen. I usually lift so my stamina is real garbage right now.

    When you buy new shoes, break them in like a real good month beforehand. It really makes a world of difference to have the heel worn in, especially due to the amount of standing you're doing.

    Everyone is suggesting snacks and I agree, but don't stop at snacks for your bag. Stock up your room! There's a Target and several other shops where you can buy water and essentials (or Amazon Prime Now to the hotel!). This will help you save money in the long run instead of bleeding 15 bucks a day for breakfast (but hey, it's your vacation, you eat what you want :D)

    This is a weird one I learned the hard way but bring an amount of cash. Yes card is accepted everywhere, but there have been several times when a vendor's Square wasn't working or it was just easier to hand a few dollars to the Cookie Brigade. I would especially recommend smaller bills for tipping! If you plan on going to parties, bars, etc. it's always easier to have cash to tip folks. It's a high volume event and having a little bit of money has really done wonders for me than relying on plastic the entire time.

    And this is entirely a personal preference but smartwatch or wearable has helped me out a ton during Pax. The event (especially the main floor) is super loud, so I tend to miss a lot of stuff on my phone. Line alerts, texts from friends, calls, and reminders of panels all go straight to my smartwatch. It's been a great way for me to stay on top of things. Again, this is a personal thing but something to consider if you already have one or were thinking of getting one.
    kaZombie wrote: »
    Me and my friend are both cosplayers. Would people suggest skipping over the cosplay for our first year? What is the cosplay scene like with PAX west?

    Cosplayers are awesome at PAX! Often times a lot of exhibitors will bring cosplayers as part of their exhibit, like last year Maul Cosplay came as his Geralt with a Yennefer cosplayer and walked the devs to their seats at a CDProjekt panel. The year before that, ItsRainingNeon dressed as Cindy with the Hammerhead to hype the huge FFXV presence. Bungie also hosted a panel where they welcomed Destiny cosplayers to show off their costumes last year.

    So yes, cosplay is definitely present at Pax. If you and your friend really want to dress up, you will certainly be in good company :D

    IncreaseBlue on
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  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    When the schedule comes out look over the maps provided. My first year at PAX I really didn't get out of the main convention space (expo hall and the 2nd & 3rd floor tabletop areas). But PAX is way bigger.

    This is a map of where all the PAX spaces usually are.
    4lsuk05bbnwc.png
    All this info is based on previous PAXen and is just meant to give a sense of where you'll want to look/go.
    The Annex across the street usually has the Magic tournaments, PC freeplay, BYOC, and some indie dstuff.
    The Paramount was totally Bungie in 2017 (and MTG in 2016). There are usually a couple food trucks over here. They tend to not be the same every day, and the popular ones (Cheese Wizards) sell out.
    The Westin is where a lot of big signing events happens. Panels, the staff pin tradeing, and any celebrity YouTubers (those lines are the hugest, if one of them is on your itinerary line up now).
    The Grand Hyatt has some of the bigger panel rooms
    The Sheraton has a number of panels, plus it contains Merch Lite. Merch lite is the only place you can buy the show's Limited Edition Pinny Arcade pins. And the line starts earrrrly.
    The Olive 8 has tabletop spaces. I believe it's usually quite in the day, but after the expo hall closes and regular Tabletop fills up, it fills in.
    Benaroya Hall hosts the biggest panels.
    And the WSCC itself has a 6th floor, which usually has a host of indie games and Bandland. Bandland is where friends of PA (and some of the bands playing that year) who don't make games get to set up booths for meeting fans and selling loot. LoadingReadyRun, Katie Rice, MC Frontalot, Kris Straub, Extra Credits, and Bill Amend are all frequent exhibitors there.



    IncreaseBlue
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    I usually look up local theaters in the area to see what is going on since PAX presenters/guests sometimes rent space to put on events. jacksepticeye is doing a show at the Moore theater (easy walk) on Sept-3rd. There are a small (<30) number of tickets still available.

  • KeroanKeroan Chicago, IllinoisRegistered User regular
    The lessons I learned after my first PAX was:
    1. Don't wear new shoes or shoes without sufficient arch support. It hurts. A lot.
    2. Related to above, if you throw a fresh pair of fluffy socks in your bag and change in the afternoon to the new socks, it makes your poor feet feel refreshed
    3. Eat! At some point you should eat. Not eating is easy, but will make you feel bad afterward
    4. Sleep! If you're tired, nap. Your health shouldn't take a back seat to video games
    5. Leave the convention. Seriously, go see something else! PAX will be there when you get back and you don't have to overload yourself with experiences.

    IncreaseBlueanettie76
  • KopeAceticKopeAcetic Registered User regular
    Keroan wrote: »
    Leave the convention. Seriously, go see something else! PAX will be there when you get back and you don't have to overload yourself with experiences.

    We have talked a lot about eating, and I do also agree with leaving the convention. I HIGHLY recommend going to the market and getting some fresh fruit/veggies to munch on throughout the day that are both delicious and nutritious.

    Keroan
  • jukkakhanjukkakhan Registered User regular
    Definitely check out old threads as there are tons of first-timer advise and it's all good. Off the top of my head:

    -Accept you can't/won't see everything. Pick a few must-do items and focus on them, fill in the time around them with other stuff. If it's going to be a popular thing, plan accordingly. There will be long lines.
    -PAX is not just the Expo Hall. There's so much to do, don't limit yourself by only staying in there. Go out and check out stuff going on in the other areas. Attend a panel, try out a type of game you haven't tried, go to a community or industry event.
    -If you like art/posters, bring a poster tube ahead of time. The Fedex Office in the convention center will run out.
    -Bring an external battery to keep your devices topped off to last though the day.
    -Check out the events and other things that get coordinated on this forum. The PAX community is awesome and is one of my favorite parts of PAX.
    -Enjoy! PAX is quite the experience so soak it in and go with the flow. If you're not having fun, you're not doing PAX to its fullest.

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    IncreaseBluevespachicaanettie76ClannMorgansediroxbacon_avengerCroatian Sensation
  • wolfemancswolfemancs Registered User regular
    I'm thinking about trying something new this year. I watched the 20 years of StarCraft panel from PAXEast on Twitch this year since I was at home in Seattle and not at PAXEast. I found it 95-98% as good as actually being at the panel. The only real downsides are if you want to ask questions (and the panel actually saves time for them) and any swag they're giving out.

    So my idea for this year is to skip any panel that's streamed on twitch, and just watch it in the following weeks from home (or work at lunch), and then use that time to actually play some more tabletop games. I love playing games, but usually don't end up making time to go play games at PAX. This idea is also much more time efficient, as it'll only take me an hour to watch the panel later, whereas it'd take 2+ hours at the con by the time you factor in transit time and line waiting time.

    I'll probably chicken out and still go to a bunch of panels, but the idea seems good in my head right now.

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