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Pax Prime veterans, what would you do differently this year?

Hoboking006Hoboking006 Registered User regular
The die is cast and PAX Prime 2015 is upon us.

How have your past experiences shaped your approach to this years event and how will you make it a unique experience?

May PAX be upon you.
«13

Posts

  • The_RatThe_Rat Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    The thing I've learned to do is just find groups of people playing a board game or whatever random activity and ask to be included in the next round. Also, bring some kind of simple game to play in the various lines: it's another great way to meet cool people. A couple years ago I brought a copy of that Jazz Singing Card Game, and it's perfect for stuff like that. I've found that trying new things and spending as little time as possible waiting in lines is what's worked best for me.

  • The_ReflectionThe_Reflection Registered User regular
    Skip everything in the main hall. It's all recorded for later and seeing anything there live as opposed to recorded is not different at all. The time you have to spend waiting is better spent somewhere else.

    Just my opinion.

    SYSOP wrote: »

    "The_Reflection has a story, that must be told"..."He is already a legend, and he ain't even old"
    "He can drink a river of blood and not burst"..."He can swallow a desert and never thirst"
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  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    Maybe going to try to: Give myself more scheduling slack. Get more sleep and take more breaks during the nonstop PAX marathon. Drink more water. Line up absurdly early for sessions that have been stuck in tiny rooms. Read PAX press releases from any of my favorite game companies before the show starts. Learn to play some new and unfamiliar games. Do paint-your-own-miniature before they get really crowded. Actually play a pick-up game at the secret hidden offsite tabletop area, location still unknown. And try to balance a) playing more tabletop with b) trying to find and play some really good stuff on the expo floor. Go to console free play for the first time ever. Maybe watch a tournament match (previously I got to watch LoL, Starcraft 2, and some Omegathon, but I didn't catch any of those last year.)

    And what I'm almost certainly going to do exactly the same again: Acquisitions Inc. and D&D !! And be open to any spontaneous fun and awesomeness which I might stumble across. :D

    Keroan
  • Desert LeviathanDesert Leviathan Registered User regular
    #1 most exciting piece of new PAX gear - folding tripod stool for lines.

    Realizing lately that I don't really trust or respect basically any of the moderators here. So, good luck with life, friends! Hit me up on Twitter @DesertLeviathan
    IncreaseBluemcdermottKeroanAlazullKaollasu78ClixBluemeaneTheJackalMan
  • LazorzLazorz Tokyo, JPRegistered User regular
    edited May 2015
    I really want to get more into the pin trading community. For the last two years my friends have been resistant to my pin adventuring ideas (that is, waiting in demo lines just to get freebies), but this year I'm going to go all out, even if they refuse to come along to the events. I'm coming for you, pinpals!!!

    Lazorz on
    Keroan
  • pogoplaypogoplay Writer/Blogger/Gamer Calgary, AlbertaRegistered User regular
    Attend more panels; Get more drunk; Have more fun.

    At my own expense.

    Attended: PAX Prime 2010, PAX Prime 2011, PAX Prime 2012, PAX Prime 2014.
    Attending: PAX Prime 2016
    Twitter @Pogoplay
    draklanPerestroika
  • DreamwriterDreamwriter Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    My original plan to do differently this year was to get Saturday and Sunday passes instead of Friday and Saturday, because last year kinda sucked with Friday/Saturday. The Q&A/Draw a Strip panels (my favorite PAX activity) were Sunday and Monday, so I only got to see them online afterwards.

    Dreamwriter on
  • The_SavesThe_Saves Magistrate of Crazy Town KirklandRegistered User regular
    Skip everything in the main hall. It's all recorded for later and seeing anything there live as opposed to recorded is not different at all. The time you have to spend waiting is better spent somewhere else.

    Just my opinion.

    No lie, I was debating this while at the Pax East Storytime. Just five minutes later they passed out Tell Tale Collection Steam codes for everyone in attendance though. Because of attending that panel I now have lots of great games from a studio I respect. GearBox also has swag for attendants I believe.

    Ummm...
    SkeleVaderKeroan
  • alkihaulalkihaul Registered User new member
    If you want to eat out anywhere with a group of 4 or more, plan ahead, make a reservation on Open Table. No waiting for tables or downgrading where you eat just because of lines. I organize a group of 10 of us, and it is a massive waste of time waiting to eat at a restaurant with out a reservation. Plus you can make them months in advance :)

    mcdermott
  • DashDDashD Dread Pirate Chef Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    #1 most exciting piece of new PAX gear - folding tripod stool for lines.

    I always say I'm going to get one, and have yet to do so. Maybe this will be the year.

    This year I might try to find the elusive tabletop area. And spend more time in the classic arcade room.


    "Brilliant! Oh wait, if we were meant to fly, we would have been born with little bags of nuts."
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    minisplat
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    Skip the AAA games on the expo floor. The lines are very long, most of them are coming out pretty soon, and you've already heard of all of them. Indie games have much shorter waits and there will be many you've never heard of that are awesome.

    TOGSolidCabezoneThe_Reflectionadias.angelSpiritfireMalgarasjukkakhanPerestroikakimeDarkAonJobiwanKenobiAiouaNotoriusBEN
  • fueledbyginfueledbygin Registered User regular
    Not so much doing something different as doing more of the same: avoid the mad rush to get into the convention center, and trickle in after lunch every day.

  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    Not so much doing something different as doing more of the same: avoid the mad rush to get into the convention center, and trickle in after lunch every day.

    I like to do a leisurely stroll of the expo hall, merch booth, or some other area before lunch personally. But yeah, no desire to do the queue-up thing. I'll stroll up about 1015 or 1030.

    Geth
  • bacon_avengerbacon_avenger Defender of Pork Products Pacific NW, USARegistered User regular
    Get to the centre earlier this year in case there is limited edition pins or some such thing so I don't spend the rest of the convention stressing out trying to get one of myself (10 year pin anyone?)

    PAX Prime 2021 Checklist:[ ]Hotel [ ]Time Off [ ]Bobcats [ ]Challenge Coin [ ]Forum Badge
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  • PavioPavio Registered User regular
    I love the Expo Hall. I know there are a decent number of people that rag on it on the forums, but there is a reason it is packed all day every day.

    I find I get the most out of it by planning. I put my top things as my first stop for each day and hurry straight there. It has worked out awesome almost every time. Then, I load up Friday with the things I think I'll have the longest waits for and knock a few of them out. It's awesome, I'm on the PAX high, and then the rest of the weekend no matter what I do, I'm not bummed and I don't feel like I missed out on something. I also don't feel like I wasted time.

    Tournaments and concerts=amazing. Sign up for some, they're worth it.

    Panels=hit or miss, but the hits are so worth it.

    dfa8x4zsakr9.jpg


    Hoboking006mcdermottBeighTheJackalMan
  • nixternixter roughly Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    As an older attendee, I have been really happy with this folding stool:

    http://www.amazon.com/Allstar-Marketing-Group-PC011712-Amazing/dp/B00GVJGPWQ

    It's not really pocket-size; I stick it in my backpack.

    aka Avidguru from Twitter and elsewhere

    O1vSeKm.png
  • TOGSolidTOGSolid Drunk sailor Seattle, WashingtonRegistered User regular
    edited May 2015
    This is my seventh year doing this so..uh...drink even more?
    YoungFrey wrote: »
    Skip the AAA games on the expo floor. The lines are very long, most of them are coming out pretty soon, and you've already heard of all of them. Indie games have much shorter waits and there will be many you've never heard of that are awesome.

    ThisThisThisThisThisThisThisThisThisThis

    Save the AAA stuff for the last day when the expo hall clears out more and the lines get short. Alternatively, try and get into PAX early and hit the big stuff first when the lines are just forming. I usually do the last day thing because getting up early means getting up with a hangover, usually. And yeah, the indie booths are ridiculously fun and full of stuff you've never heard of.

    TOGSolid on
    wWuzwvJ.png
    adias.angelfirewaterwordFenrisfang
  • IncreaseBlueIncreaseBlue Registered User regular
    nixter wrote: »
    As an older attendee, I have been really happy with this folding stool:

    http://www.amazon.com/Allstar-Marketing-Group-PC011712-Amazing/dp/B00GVJGPWQ

    It's not really pocket-size; I stick it in my backpack.

    I was considering getting a stool like this as well. I saw several people at PAX South lines with these and thought it was a great idea. Thanks for the recommendation.

    nixter
  • The AviatrixThe Aviatrix Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    I'm gonna do more table top stuff! I had a great time at South playing demo tabletop games with no wait. And having great conversations with people while playing - who I then ran into the following day in line for something else.

    And I'll avoid the Expo Hall on Saturday completely. (Unless there's an omg awesome photobooth like the Lichdom booth last year... In which case I will need a photo in my Saturday costume.)

    The Aviatrix on
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  • Rogue_hunterRogue_hunter Registered User regular
    Spend more time with the friends I've made through the forums and twitter, spend less time aimlessly wandering the expo hall and freeplay areas and actually plan to see a few panels instead of just dropping in if there's space available. Spread out my drinking and carousing instead of blasting it all in at night.

    Spend more time with random internet friends.

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  • jthom252jthom252 Registered User regular
    Go attend the stuff outside the convention, last year the VR party and the Seattle Six expo were both highlights. It's a good place to meet new people and see a whole lot of things that you just can't on the show floor.

    Panels are really only great if it's something you really want to see or if you want to fill some time. Smaller panels are usually more interesting since they aren't recorded and you can have a more in depth Q&A if they're interesting.

    TOGSolid
  • TOGSolidTOGSolid Drunk sailor Seattle, WashingtonRegistered User regular
    Go attend the stuff outside the convention,

    Also good advice. The community events and various parties are good stuff and usually pretty fun. They've generally become more interesting to me than the con itself.

    wWuzwvJ.png
    mcdermottMvrckDarkAonNotoriusBEN
  • adias.angeladias.angel Tech-Savvy Wife Kalamazoo, MIRegistered User regular
    Do more research ahead of time for the TT area and/or hound the TT admin to post more info. Last year randomly found out from someone that there were social board game meet ups every night at a certain time. Pure luck I even found out about it.

    Prime '12, '13, '14, '15, '19 .. East '12
  • firewaterwordfirewaterword Satchitananda Pais Vasco to San FranciscoRegistered User regular
    Going to be watching this thread! Headed to pax prime this year, going to be the first time I've gone. I kicked it with some forum duders before pax east last year (had a long layover in Boston) and it seemed like good times!

    Definitely more looking forward to events/concerts/parties/community stuff than waiting ages in line to play a game, that's for sure.

    Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
  • bubblegumnexbubblegumnex Registered User regular
    Drink more. Pants optional.



    I am looking forward to whatever pubcrawl is at Prime this year.

    <@zerzhul&gt; bubblegumnex: you were so very fucked up
    <@zerzhul&gt; you win at twdt
    adias.angelbacon_avengermyxTOGSolidjumbotopeetsnack
  • jamsyarbotsjamsyarbots Wilmington, DERegistered User regular
    Do more research ahead of time for the TT area and/or hound the TT admin to post more info. Last year randomly found out from someone that there were social board game meet ups every night at a certain time. Pure luck I even found out about it.

    Was this something that came up in the forums? I'm curious because this sounds like something my group would be into.



    adias.angel
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    Do more research ahead of time for the TT area and/or hound the TT admin to post more info. Last year randomly found out from someone that there were social board game meet ups every night at a certain time. Pure luck I even found out about it.

    Was this something that came up in the forums? I'm curious because this sounds like something my group would be into.
    Yes. And moreover, a lot of things are organized in these forums.
    Usually:
    • Pub Crawl
    • General City Tourism
    • A nice Pre-PAX catered dinner
    • A post-PAX Party
    • Forum Badges to identify yourselves to others
    • A food exchange since people come to PAX from all over the planet.
    • A Brewery Tour
    • A Challenge Coin(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Challenge_coin)
    • A big boardgaming meetup the night before PAX

    One of the things notably *not* organized on the forums are most of the parties. Those are usually announced via the organizing company. So if you getting on the list for PAX parties is your thing, I'd follow all the companies you care about that usually throw them.

    YoungFrey on
  • adias.angeladias.angel Tech-Savvy Wife Kalamazoo, MIRegistered User regular
    Do more research ahead of time for the TT area and/or hound the TT admin to post more info. Last year randomly found out from someone that there were social board game meet ups every night at a certain time. Pure luck I even found out about it.

    Was this something that came up in the forums? I'm curious because this sounds like something my group would be into.

    Apparently it was a pre-planned event but most people didn't know about it. I just happened to talk to girl at the TT who was there searching for the social board game area. I can't remember if she said she read it or if it was a word of mouth thing.

    Prime '12, '13, '14, '15, '19 .. East '12
  • SolelronSolelron Wandering Gamer Cornelius, ORRegistered User regular
    I'm actually hoping to try more social events this year. I am not the drinker but I'm usually limited to the Pre-Pax board gaming, and the MMT. I spend a great deal of my time helping out at the Corral with SJ games (COME play games with me!) but I'd love to check out some of the other social activities.

  • forbiddenvoidforbiddenvoid Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    My wife and I were talking about this last night. I think we'll do Story Time this year. In the past, we stood in line for the expo hall and just felt like it wasn't worth it. Going to Story Time will feel like a real beginning to PAX.

    We'll put off playing the AAA titles until Monday as well. We sat in line for ESO for 2.5 hours in 2013, and while it was a fun experience to play the game (45 minutes of playtime was pretty good) it was frustrating to spend such a large portion of the day in line for one title. I'm going to walk through the Expo Hall on Friday this year and figure out which booths I'm interested that look like they'll take some time and plan for those for the end of the weekend.

    More tabletop, more Magic, more meeting new people.

    PAX. PAX. PAX. Boom.
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    Bring some portable games to play in the lines (dice,cards, etc..). Of course if you have a 3DS/Vita/etc that works too, but physical ones are more social and you're more likely to make some friends.

  • Hoboking006Hoboking006 Registered User regular
    Each year I find out about more stuff, in particular last year was the first year I attended parties, met people from the forums, and did buttoneers. So I try to make it a something old something new.

    This year my new thing will be to try and go to concerts but part of the reason I started this thread to was to get ideas from other veterans on what new things to try.(it's all about information, perhaps the new thing is just being more active on the forums!)

    But every year theres one thing I try and hone, my expo hall skills. It's not just about demoing games and getting free stuff, it's about the hunt, strategically mapping out my battle plan for each day to maximize the number of unique experiences and cut down line time. The pax prime subreddit was a great resource last year, so this year I plan on making a swag lookout thread on these forums for fellow expo hall hunters. Not just material swag to, but unique experiences offered by booths to keep a look out for(like last years videoball competition, that guy was hilarious).

    May PAX be upon you.
    adias.angel
  • Dr.RocktipusDr.Rocktipus Registered User regular
    I went the pre-pax board game night for the first time last year, not being much of a board game guy then. That night and the rest of the con got me really into board games, so this year I'm bringing my own for the night. Also I got roped into MTG this year so I'll be checking some of their stuff out.

    I wouldn't really change anything else except that I am definitely not skipping the giantbomb panel this year. I opted for the Evil Within party last year and that was a disaster. I am not waiting 4 hours in line getting accosted by homeless crackheads while Jessica Chobot and friends gets to waltz in as a "VIPs" again.

  • TimoonTimoon Occupied Canada Registered User regular
    This will be my 4th Pax, I am about 2 hours north of Seattle, so the last few I came in on Friday Morning. This year, springing for the extra night in the hotel and looking to do some of the pre pax table top events.

  • krae_mankrae_man Registered User regular
    I find my legs/butt fall asleep faster in a slacker stool then sitting on the floor. Also every inch of space/pound of weight in your bag is meaningful. I just plain forgot my stool two years ago and ended up liking that better.

  • GreatfritoGreatfrito Registered User regular
    Last year was my first PAX, and I went with friends who've gone to a handful of them. They're mostly board game people, hate lines, and don't do -any- panels.

    THIS year I'm dragging along a slightly different group of friends (and my wife, hopefully). We're going to plan things out a bit in advance, and actually try to STICK to the plan this year. Hit up way, WAY more panels, do more organized events. Actually bring (and own) a 3DS for lines. Participate more here, on the forums, and find more of the community stuff.

    Basically I'm treating last year as a "test run", and this year as a real convention.

    I figured out how to actually manage to get badges, so now I need to figure out how to... get into parties and such, I guess.

  • MalgarasMalgaras Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    So this coming prime will be PAX #8 for me now, and I think the biggest thing I've learned over time is that PAX is about the people. Yes, you can play that new game that isn't out yet, but it will be released eventually, and you will be able to play it any time you want. The opportunity to immerse yourself in a group of thousands who are really passionate about the same things you are is far harder to come by. In the more practical sense this means:
    • PAX is more than the expo hall. Yes, there is cool stuff there, but there is so much more. Check out the freeplay areas, tabletop, concerts/panels, etc. There is a ton to do and you'd be surprised what you wind up liking.
    • I'm going to go against the grain on this one, but waiting in lines can actually be pretty nice. The trick is simple, bring games. Honestly, my first PAX was kinda a blur, but one of the things I remember most fondly doesn't sound lime much, but it was meeting some really cool folks in the line for the keynote, and some really fun games of Munchkin. Phone numbers were exchanged, and more games were had all throughout the weekend, and it was just a lot of fun.
    • Do some community events if you can. PAX has grown from a few days to a whole week for me. Some of my favorite parts occur before PAX starts and after PAX ends. Now the fact of the matter is people have limited time, but if you are going to be up in Seattle even Thursday night, there are tons of events going on to check out. Plus there are parties and such going on all during PAX too, although that becomes a tougher call at least for me.
    • Don't stress too much about a schedule. If there are a few things you REALLY want to do, cool, but trying to plan out your entire PAX beforehand is only going to limit you, and I guarantee you you won't get it all done anyways. Don't be afraid to wander. Our group got in to some great games of Jonathan Sebastian Joust this PAX east by wandering in to a random side room just because we saw some lights. Little things like that can really add up to an overall great PAX

    Malgaras on
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    Lazorzbacon_avengerHoboking006adias.angelfirewaterword
  • LazorzLazorz Tokyo, JPRegistered User regular
    edited May 2015
    Malgaras wrote: »
    • Do some community events if you can. PAX has grown from a few days to a whole week for me. Some of my favorite parts occur before PAX starts and after PAX ends. Now the fact of the matter is people have limited time, but if you are going to be up in Seattle even Thursday night, there are tons of events going on to check out. Plus there are parties and such going on all during PAX too, although that becomes a tougher call at least for me.
    This!

    So, a story. Last year I went to PAX Dev for the first time. My friend and I showed up Tuesday morning the week of PAX and ended up staying until Monday night after everything had closed. And man, being in Seattle for a week was an incredible experience! The entire trip felt like a week-long PAX (which with Dev and Prime being a total of 6 days, it kinda sorta was), which was so, so cool. And you don't have to go to Dev to experience a longer PAX than just the four days, because anytime that week you can meet other PAX-goers who are willing to hang out, talk, play games, etc., because the whole reason we all came to Seattle was to hang out and have an awesome time!

    So my point is, going to community events is a great way to get more "PAX" out of your trip and feel like your PAX was week-long rather than just four days. My favorite community event by far is the Pre-PAX Board Game Night, which happens pretty much all Thursday evening until late, late at night. It's great to just sit down and play some games with random people that you instantly feel connected to. I've always felt that it gave me a taste of PAX before the show even started, because just being in a giant room with a bunch of tabletop games going on is pretty much the PAX experience, just not in the convention center. I've also heard the Pokecrawl, Triwizard Tournament, and other bar crawls are a blast.

    So the moral of the story to all you first timers or vets looking to make changes is: don't be afraid to go to community events! They're really an awesome time. Trust me, if you're looking for something new to experience, just pick one and go!

    Lazorz on
    bacon_avenger
  • BeighBeigh Bloomington, ILRegistered User regular
    The_Saves wrote: »
    Skip everything in the main hall. It's all recorded for later and seeing anything there live as opposed to recorded is not different at all. The time you have to spend waiting is better spent somewhere else.

    Just my opinion.

    No lie, I was debating this while at the Pax East Storytime. Just five minutes later they passed out Tell Tale Collection Steam codes for everyone in attendance though. Because of attending that panel I now have lots of great games from a studio I respect. GearBox also has swag for attendants I believe.

    Firaxis passed out Civ: Beyond Earth posters after their panel at East last year too.

    CVpdlHm.png76561197996811040.png
  • slash5150slash5150 Registered User new member
    First thing I'd do is bring one of those water bottles that filter as you drink.

    Then bring two of them.

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