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Constructive Feedback - West 2017

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Posts

  • MarsDragonMarsDragon Registered User regular
    vespachica wrote: »
    Huh:
    -I feel like we have reached a tipping point with badges. I had an extra set and couldn't sell them on Reddit and could barely give them away. On the other hand, I worry if it becomes less popular it will eventually stop.

    I wonder how much of that is because no one expected E3 to take that much pressure off PAX, and if that will continue next year or not. I think long-time attendees (and scalpers) got caught out by low demand this year, which may or may not change next year.

    I don't mind PAX badges being less in demand, since they were very difficult to get for a few years in there. Some release of pressure is a good thing. It will be interesting to see if the situation continues.

  • zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    I am just getting too old and cranky for morning lines.
    I think this has been me for years, and I'm probably not even old!

    EC0T4r7.pngoW9G6G8.png
  • vespachicavespachica SeattleRegistered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    I am just getting too old and cranky for morning lines.
    I think this has been me for years, and I'm probably not even old!

    Waiting in the line to get in 2/4 days was circumstance. Usually I like to roll in around 11 because, I, too, am far too old for that stuff.

    ufq9gj8383nh.png

    Madpoet
  • MagnusCarterMagnusCarter Registered User regular
    I'm pretty sure the annex line fills the annex, but the times I've been near the front (not this year) they had security/enforcers on the escalators so you couldn't get to Expo until the main line had finished loading.

  • PavioPavio Registered User regular
    It was definitely moving while we were not. I am six four and can ssee over the crowd :p

    That being said, minor thing. I think I am just getting too old and cranky for morning lines.

    The thing you have to consider is that the outside line to the main entrance that can see the Annex is very far back in the main line. They started the main line on time, at the same time as the Annex, each day. Fewer people waited at the Annex at first but by Monday I was pretty far back even with being there about 45 minutes early.

    PAX Prime '07, '12, '13, '14, '15, '16, '17, '18
    PAX South '15
    PAX East '16, '17
    vespachica
  • PavioPavio Registered User regular
    I'm pretty sure the annex line fills the annex, but the times I've been near the front (not this year) they had security/enforcers on the escalators so you couldn't get to Expo until the main line had finished loading.

    No, the Annex line lets you right up to the Expo Hall, I went in that way each morning and it was great. This is the first time they've tested it and it helps a lot.

    And here's why it's awesome: they NEED more entrances. The Expo Hall fills up so slowly that they tell people not to show up until an hour later! But, if they keep adding entrances, then you can plan for that--make sure people know (which they did announce), and then they can choose which entrance to go to so that if you want to line up early you can choose the one you think will be fastest.

    Basically, more entrances helps everyone and fills the Expo Hall faster and gets people to early panels faster, while meaning a shorter wait time for EVERYONE. It's win-win.

    PAX Prime '07, '12, '13, '14, '15, '16, '17, '18
    PAX South '15
    PAX East '16, '17
    vespachica
  • The AviatrixThe Aviatrix Registered User regular
    For at least the last two years you've been able to line up at the annex for access to expo hall.
    It's always a matter of where in expo we want to go that decides which line. Bethesda? Annex. Warhammer? Main.
    But the point where the Annex line is visible to the Main line has been very far back in the main line - as somebody said. I did not enter the main line at all this year, but last year it went through Freeway Park before it went to the street side of the convention center. And the Annex line gets capped at a much shorter length due to limited space. (Probably less than what was in Freeway Park last year.)

    x5XpZBK.pngjQS3i1Y.pngSDWaWa1.png
  • PavioPavio Registered User regular
    For at least the last two years you've been able to line up at the annex for access to expo hall.
    It's always a matter of where in expo we want to go that decides which line. Bethesda? Annex. Warhammer? Main.
    But the point where the Annex line is visible to the Main line has been very far back in the main line - as somebody said. I did not enter the main line at all this year, but last year it went through Freeway Park before it went to the street side of the convention center. And the Annex line gets capped at a much shorter length due to limited space. (Probably less than what was in Freeway Park last year.)

    Yes, you've been able to line up there, but they haven't opened the doors right away. The last couple years before this one it was about a 30 minute wait before opening the Annex doors, which because of the shorter line still meant getting in to the building earlier. I've done that line every day every year for the last few years, and this year was an awesome change.

    PAX Prime '07, '12, '13, '14, '15, '16, '17, '18
    PAX South '15
    PAX East '16, '17
  • The AviatrixThe Aviatrix Registered User regular
    edited September 2017
    Pavio wrote: »
    For at least the last two years you've been able to line up at the annex for access to expo hall.
    It's always a matter of where in expo we want to go that decides which line. Bethesda? Annex. Warhammer? Main.
    But the point where the Annex line is visible to the Main line has been very far back in the main line - as somebody said. I did not enter the main line at all this year, but last year it went through Freeway Park before it went to the street side of the convention center. And the Annex line gets capped at a much shorter length due to limited space. (Probably less than what was in Freeway Park last year.)

    Yes, you've been able to line up there, but they haven't opened the doors right away. The last couple years before this one it was about a 30 minute wait before opening the Annex doors, which because of the shorter line still meant getting in to the building earlier. I've done that line every day every year for the last few years, and this year was an awesome change.

    Last year I went in at 10am every time I was in the annex line o.O
    I mean, you have to go up the escalators, but that's not a big deal given you end up where you want to be rather than on the opposite side of the expo hall.

    The Aviatrix on
    x5XpZBK.pngjQS3i1Y.pngSDWaWa1.png
    vespachica
  • AldDaedrothAldDaedroth Registered User new member
    I'll start by saying I really enjoyed PAX West 2017. Great show, as always.

    A few things that I especially liked:

    The Enforcers were great this year, especially the ones helping with the Bethesda VR line. I finally got into the line on the last day and everyone was super nice to us.

    People at the PAX merch booth were really nice, too, though I bought two shirts and didn't realize until I was packing to leave that they'd given me the wrong size.

    The demos: I loved the demos I played this year, especially the Bethesda ones (VR and Evil Within 2).

    Some negatives:

    The swag bags: to be honest, some years I just skip them because they're always in some far off location (okay, maybe not that far off) and the contents never seem worth the walk. This year when I picked up a bag after hoofing it all the way to the Westin, I made the mistake of looking inside it -- you know, to see if there was actually something in there -- at which point this woman immediately barked, "No digging through the bags!" Sorry, was I digging? I thought I was looking. I assume this was an Enforcer; I didn't look up because I didn't know what other minor infraction I might have been in the process of committing. And though most Enforcers are awesome, every so often you come upon one who is just dying to declare martial law. (Again, this was the only Enforcer I was less than thrilled with.)

    No D&D: this was a bummer. I know PAX Unplugged is a thing now, but what if you can't go to PAX Unplugged?

    No Blizzard: I very much missed the awe-inspiring spectacle that is the Blizzard booth.

    The Bioshock party disaster: in short, this event required tickets and tickets were given out. The number of tickets given out exceeded the capacity of the venue but that in itself is not such a big deal. Not everyone shows up, afterall. It's like overselling a flight. I don't love the idea, but I see why they do it. The real problem was that IGN/2K changed their collective mind about who they wanted to admit. They decided they didn't want to admit all the ticket holders. Instead they wanted to admit all the people in costume. Imagine opening night of a new Star Wars movie. It's sold out but you have a ticket. You show up for the movie only to find that lo and behold, the theater has decided not to honor tickets. They've decided to admit these other people instead, the ones dressed up like Wookies and Jawas. They can tweet pictures of all the Wookies and Jawas and it will look way cooler than pictures of regular ticket holders. That's essentially what happened. A lot of us showed up two (or more!) hours early even though we had tickets because we knew they'd given out more tickets than they had room for. I didn't go in costume, but I had bought clothing specifically for the event. A t-shirt and specific pants -- we're not talking hundreds of dollars here, but still. Other people paid for transportation specifically for the event. Upon arrival (again, hours early), the word went out that suddenly tickets weren't required. What?! That's right, no tickets required. Instead, you needed to be in costume. Or you needed to have gotten there about 4-5 hours early so that you were one of the first people in line. Everyone else wasted an evening in line with no hope of ever getting through the door. I went back to my confirmation email and I think that's where I found a link to contact the organizers. I wrote a civilized complaint about the way the party was handled and submitted it, after which I got an autoresponder message from someone named Kiersten Slader. I waited a few days for a response. When I didn't get one, I sent an additional email message (still civilized) and received no response to that one either. I was really bummed out initially but due to the complete lack of response, I'm now just really really angry. It's put me off IGN, a site I've been reading in one capacity or another for well over a decade, and I'm sad to say it, but it's put me off Bioshock and 2K as well. I will no doubt reach the point where I am able to look at one of those games (previously among my favorite) again, but it won't be any time soon. I can't say the same for IGN. I've unsubscribed from their email lists and deleted their app from my devices. I'm done. Thanks Kiersten for wrecking this for me.

    How late the dates for PAX West were announced: I understand why the ticket sales have to be sprung on us. I don't understand why we can't know the dates of the show in general. The longer you wait to get a plane ticket, the more expensive it is. You also have to request time off from work. That, too, must be done in advance. The earlier we know the dates, the better.

  • alchahestalchahest Edmonton, CanadaRegistered User regular

    How late the dates for PAX West were announced: I understand why the ticket sales have to be sprung on us. I don't understand why we can't know the dates of the show in general. The longer you wait to get a plane ticket, the more expensive it is. You also have to request time off from work. That, too, must be done in advance. The earlier we know the dates, the better.

    this right here is a huge issue for me - I have a very hard time booking time off in the late summer/early autumn, especially around september long weekend. if I don't book in january it requires a heck of a lot of begging and pleading and working extra hours elsewhere to make it work. but if I just book off that time and it turns out not to be over september long, then I am very unlikely to be able to reschedule it. And of course the more expensive booking for being closer to the date.

    BLaZuRECroatian Sensation
  • SkeleVaderSkeleVader Your Friendly Dark Lord of Destruction Registered User regular

    How late the dates for PAX West were announced: I understand why the ticket sales have to be sprung on us. I don't understand why we can't know the dates of the show in general. The longer you wait to get a plane ticket, the more expensive it is. You also have to request time off from work. That, too, must be done in advance. The earlier we know the dates, the better.

    I asked this question during Ryan's AMA before South.

    He said:
    "Yeah historically we've done it to prevent people from scooping up rooms ahead of time, or trying to undercut the show. Plus it's nice to be able to make it a big announcement and everything. You aren't wrong though, it's something to consider."

    I understand wanting to make it a big announcement, but they really need to do it earlier so we can all lock in travel instead of having to cross our fingers and hope it is on Labor Day weekend again.

  • Spokane_SnowManSpokane_SnowMan Registered User regular
    Pro tip... The convention center lists their upcoming events on their own calendar. While they DON'T list PAX until after it's dates are announced, you can see what OTHER EVENTS are scheduled... So if you see events scheduled for the weekend before and the weekend after Labor Day... Then you know PAX is on Labor Day weekend even if they don't announce it.

    CKingvespachica
  • DustyStarrDustyStarr Registered User regular
    For the most part PAX was awesome, but there were a couple of things that made it a little less enjoyable.

    A big thing was the line for Nintendo. I'm not sure if this was a PAX problem or a Nintendo problem, but the line space provided for Nintendo, when they have like 10 games they invite you to play all of and probably one of the hottest games there (Mario) was just TINY. Most indie booths had longer line space than Nintendo had, I just don't understand that at all.

    Not to mention that I do not understand the line capping procedures; when there is a huge space open to get in line, at the moment there is no one out there holding the "line is capped" sign, and I get into line but am then told to leave because it is not open yet... and I was just supposed to know, like, telepathically or something? So I'm asked to leave and I do and as I wam walking away they open the line and it fills up and caps instantly when I am not even a few steps away... like, what was even the point of not letting my friend and I in, to hurt our feelings? This happened a NUMBER of times honestly, where I would politely ask "do you know when the line will open?", they say not sure, and it opens and closes while I am walking away. Once would be one thing but that happened over five times.

    I had a friend with me who really just wanted to go to the Nintendo booth, and he was not having the best time because he has issues with crowds and loudness (he has a form of Autism), and when I tried so hard to do what I could to get him in but it always ended in disappointment or feeling like we were lied to or intentionally deceived... just mad me feel so bad.

    We also had one enforcer who was a jerk (only one though, the rest were awesome), who just totally bitched me out because I was trying to ask a question about the line. I get they probably got it a lot but it was Friday, I have not done PAX West in years, and I just wanted some info and we were treated like shit. I guess that's the big thing really; we were treated like garbage just because we wanted to do what we came to PAX to do.

    Sorry I kind of went on a little rant/tangent there, but that was the biggest thing that soured the experience for us. Line capping was an issue in general though, and I suppose it might be the nature of the best, but it made certain parts of the expo hall just feel pointless. Feels like there should have been ways to allow more people to actually play the big upcoming games.

    Aside from that as sad swag bags were a pathetic joke.

    Anyways I don't want to sound too negative, I had a great time, but I really think the lines and availability for getting into the big company's booths should be addressed and made a bit easier.

  • MadpoetMadpoet Registered User regular
    I really appreciated the booths that had a reservation system. The VR Freeplay was the best of them, with the combination of reserved slots and a standby line. I would love to see an official PAX reservation system that the convention could offer to all booths, to make this the norm. I know the lines are tradition, but we have been shown a better way.

    Rhea_starstormPavio
  • oldskoolboarderoldskoolboarder Registered User regular
    Annex entrance definitely gets you in faster. BUT, we hit the Bethesda line at 10:05 AM on Monday and by then, it was already at 3 hours from the overflow line.

    Online VR reservations would be nice.

    The Sony Experience app reservation is a joke. We got 1 res for Sat and they always seemed to get booked in about 10s.

  • HeadhunterHeadhunter Registered User regular
    Hoping the line update feature in the app is updated more frequently.

    I missed out on a couple of highly anticipated panels by relying on the status, which turned out to be inaccurate when I got to the theatre and capacity had been reached long before I arrived.

    "Perception is reality." -unknown
  • BekerBeker Child's Play Program Director SeattleRegistered User, Penny Arcade Staff regular
    DustyStarr wrote: »
    A big thing was the line for Nintendo. I'm not sure if this was a PAX problem or a Nintendo problem, but the line space provided for Nintendo, when they have like 10 games they invite you to play all of and probably one of the hottest games there (Mario) was just TINY. Most indie booths had longer line space than Nintendo had, I just don't understand that at all.

    Amount of line space, number of demo stations and length of demo are all things that are up to the exhibitor. But even then sometimes not even up to the same person. One person might design the booth based on information or assumptions, and then another person might decide to change the length of the demo, making the line space inadequate.

    Lines and the capping\uncapping situation is hard. We don't have space often for everyone who wants to line up for a thing. If we tell people when the line will uncap, then we have the problem of people hovering nearby or circling the booth over and over which causes traffic problems. Its a challenge we continue to try to find the best solution for, and i'm sorry in this case it did not work for you.

    I'm extremely sorry you had a bad experience with an Enforcer. Manning the capped lines in the Expo hall is one of the hardest jobs we ask of them, and sometimes they don't hold up well under the pressure. In the future, please come to the info booth if you have a bad experience, with a description of them, what happened and where it was, and we will escalate. It might be that we need to get them moved to a different spot where they can be more successful.

    Far as allowing people to play the games they came to PAX to see, let me help you with a sense of scale. Expo is open for 8 hours, for a 10 minute demo with a 1 minute turn over, thats about 44 demo's per station. I don't know how many stations Nintendo had, but even 20 would only be 880 demo's a day. Likely much less then the number of people who would like to play. Super popular things (and people, ie youtubers) don't often have the capacity to cater to everyone that might want to interact at PAX. Tis the nature of the beast.



    -Beker/Erick
    mV2y6kv.png
    Rhea_starstorm
  • BekerBeker Child's Play Program Director SeattleRegistered User, Penny Arcade Staff regular
    Headhunter wrote: »
    Hoping the line update feature in the app is updated more frequently.

    I missed out on a couple of highly anticipated panels by relying on the status, which turned out to be inaccurate when I got to the theatre and capacity had been reached long before I arrived.

    Sorry about that, if you want to send me ([email protected]) the panels you noted this for, and if possible, the time you showed up, we can follow up with the Enforcers who were supposed to update it and see if we can do better. It could be there were disruptions or connection problems that made updating it hard, but we want it to be a useful tool (as I think it is in many cases) so as always we will work on improving.

    -Beker/Erick
    mV2y6kv.png
  • serylisserylis Registered User new member
    PAX was an interesting experience for me this year.

    Pros:
    The Enforcers, as always, were awesome.

    The Exploding Kittens/Bears vs Babies booth was entertaining, both to watch and to participate with.

    It was slightly easier to navigate around the expo halls, although the thick carpet pads are horrid with wheelchairs, but we made due.

    The "strategy guide" was a neat addition to the lineup, and I actually pulled it out to use every once in a while (even though it was my 10th PAX this year).

    Cons:
    There were no booths/groups showing up and coming trailers. I know there really weren't any last year either, but for me that is a way to sit and relax while still in the expo hall. Honestly, I'm more of a lone gamer, so I don't really like demoing things with hundreds of people walking around me (I have bad anxiety), so that part of the expo hall has never really drawn me. Granted, if its a game I really like, I will demo, but still. Didn't bother at all this year.

    Charging money for a raffle. I'm sorry, but that is skirting the Washington State Lottery Laws very closely, especially since this is an all ages event. Also, it completely put me off of their raffles to begin with. I've never won anything in any of the raffles over the last 10 years, why would I pay to not win anything this time too? And yes, I know that this was only one or two booths, but still. I feel they need to look a little closer to the laws before doing that again.

    Another thing with one of the booths: I was at Coolermaster for almost 30 minutes trying to ask them some questions about one of their mice, and was completely ignored by both of the men working that booth. They helped men and women while I waited, and then helped more people who showed up after me, and finally I just left. I figured, well if they don't want my money, they don't get my money. It was frustrating and set the tone for the rest of that day for me.

    I felt Twitch had way to much space on the expo hall floor, and was rarely in use (at least whenever I walked by it wasn't). That whole area could have been moved to a different location and still would have done the same. But, they probably paid a bunch of money, so thats what we got.

    I missed the Reaper Paint your Mini, and the DnD stuff, and all of that. I understand that they will most likely be prominent at PAX Unplugged, but honestly the only reason I can come to this PAX is because I live in Seattle.

    (Cards Against Humanity not in the theater below PAX was something that was sorely missed) I know, it hasn't been an official part of PAX for a while, but still!

    What swag bags? I miss the days when they actually tossed in deodorant samples (some people still need reminding sometimes)

    Things to consider for next year's PAX:

    The AFK room is nice and all, but honestly a lot of your attendees are parents who would appreciate a room to go where they can let their toddlers run around like crazy for 15 minutes or so. Not a daycare or anything like that, but an out of the way room where we can let the little ones play with blocks, or jump around like a crazy child for a while so they don't get so cranky while strapped to a carrier and unable to press buttons while mom or dad is demoing a game. I'm sure if you ask nicely, there are plenty of people who would donate gently used toys or coloring books or something to this cause, I know I would.

    I feel like I have a lot more negative things to say about this years PAX, but most of them have already been mentioned in previous comments in this thread.

    Rhea_starstorm
  • bacon_avengerbacon_avenger Defender of Pork Products Pacific NW, USARegistered User regular
    My thoughts on this year:

    - This year seemed to be a lot less 'crowded' and less 'intense', as it were. I know it was sold out, but the 'spectacle' wasn't there this year IMO. Getting around felt a lot easier, both in and outside the expo hall. While I missed seeing all the things that were there in previous years (which probably isn't something that PA has much control over), being able to actually get around without having to almost shove my way through people was good.

    - I noticed a lot more attendees that bought their smalls with them, very cool to see.

    - There seemed to be a lot less scalpers and people trying to guilt me into buying their R&B CD's, this I liked as well.

    - Disappointment was had by the lack of banner hangings. I only saw the 'whimsey' one around the convention centre itself, and just happened to see the 'graphics' one by chance as I happened to pass by the Westin on my way home, and even then it was one, maybe two, around both areas. Never did see the 'welcome home' one at all, which was a huge disappointment.

    - The Prime (it will always be Prime to me, #SorryNotSorry) exclusive merch. I got my LE pin and shirt, obviously, but I really didn't care for the design of the pin graphic or the shirt construction and graphics (uninspired and 'generic' come to mind). The first one with the west branding, the polygon design, was fairly different, and I really liked the retro cartridge designs from previous years as well. This year, not so much, and seeing what was basically the same design as last year on things like the bag and water bottle, left me underwhelmed.

    - What was with the messages that were played at the beginning and end of the panels that were in the steaming theaters? 'Please silence your phones', 'leave via the doors', and 'this panel is listed as 13+' things? Yes, it's the polite thing to do (I do recall one panel that had a bunch of people talking rather loudly in the back that drowned out the talk at times). I don't know if this was a local law thing, ReedPop, or what, but it took away from the 'community vibe' and made things feel more 'commercial' and 'impersonal' than before, especially at panels that took place later at night.

    I know that several of these things may not be under PA's control, but I wanted to get my thoughts and observations out there.

    PAX Prim..err, West 2019 Checklist:[ ]Hotel [ ]Time Off [ ]Badges [ ]Challenge Coin [ ]Forum Badge
    (Holy crap, it's been 7 years now)
    wcn5c8r1la7v.png
    Rhea_starstorm
  • TOGSolidTOGSolid I didn't choose the tiki life, the tiki life chose me Inside a bottle of rumRegistered User regular
    edited October 2017
    I'm super late to the party here but honestly, I don't have much to complain about.

    I really liked how chill the Expo hall felt. It was more spaced out and there weren't any competing sound systems making noise just for the sake of making aggravating noise. I had a ball at the Blizzard party, the TWDT did well, and yeah. Go PAX!

    My only gripes are, as usual, loot bags just feel super wasteful. People are ripping through them to get the one thing they want out of it and then ditching the rest of the paper and plastic in the trash. I still feel that the time and money that goes into them would be better spent elsewhere.

    The shirt design this year just felt super uninspired. It was just a rehash of last year's so for the first time ever I didn't bother getting one.

    Finally, the Twitch booth was gigantic and didn't seem to serve a purpose except to give Twitch streamers a place to hang out in.


    If I had to make one big suggestion it would be to try and drum up PAX forum traffic. This place is an incredible tool for old and new PAXers alike and as the old guard has left, we haven't gotten a whole lot of new blood in to make up for it. We used to have all sorts of community events but now it's just a handful of us keeping the traditions alive. Advertising the PAX forums along with the event would be a great thing to help keep the PAX community vibe going and prevent PAX from ending up as just another convention. The way PAX is kind of a big geeky family is what made the event unique in the first place and it'd be a shame for that to die off.

    TOGSolid on
    PuddlemakerjamsyarbotsJobiwanKenobiCKingCroatian SensationIncreaseBluemig0PavioMoridin889
  • JeiCosJeiCos Registered User regular
    I know I'm a bit late here, but one thing really bothered me. So I had a friday badge that a friend bought, then on saturday I went in the free zones where a badge isn't required, which I found out is actually a LOT of space. So long as it wasn't past the blue archways with the PAX logo on it, I was allowed to be there. The bathrooms on the 2nd floor and 4th floor in the same locations as the escalators were WITHIN the free roam space. But WSCC staff refused to let me use them without a badge. They literally told me that even though there are areas that do not require a badge, basically using the restroom was a privilege only people with badges were allowed to have.

    Other than that I had tons of fun. I didn't get to play any games because lines are crazy, but it's not a problem. I go to look around and hang out.

  • whypick1whypick1 PAX [E] Info Booth Manager ~2' from an LCDRegistered User regular
    The first floor and areas surrounding the N-S escalators are open to the public, but the WSCC staff can restrict access to areas outside that, as you found. That's building policy, not a PAX thing.

    Is it PAX <insert nearest future PAX here> yet?
  • JeiCosJeiCos Registered User regular
    whypick1 wrote: »
    The first floor and areas surrounding the N-S escalators are open to the public, but the WSCC staff can restrict access to areas outside that, as you found. That's building policy, not a PAX thing.

    Well see that's just it..The bathrooms are IN the areas open to the public. I even asked them and they said it was considered public space, but still refused to let me use them. They can't just not let you use the restroom in a public space..Basically what that'd mean is, you can be here around this event, and have no way to get to a bathroom, and they'll just let you suffer..That can't be legal.

  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    edited April 24
    As far as I know. It is perfectly legal to restrict bathroom usage (and the permission to be there at all) on private property (which I believe the WSCC is). "Open to the public" comes with the caveat "as long as we feel like it".

    YoungFrey on
    SkeleVader
  • IncarnadineIncarnadine Registered User regular
    My experience with the convention center is that they do the same thing during every show I've been to there.

  • wolfemancswolfemancs Registered User regular
    Yeah, I'm pretty sure there are signs posted on the 2nd and 4th floor that say those restrooms are for convention attendees only. The bathrooms on the first floor are open to the public though, PAX or no.

  • ScunosiScunosi WashingtonRegistered User regular
    My experience with the convention center is that they do the same thing during every show I've been to there.
    They do, the same signs were up during Sakuracon at least late at night, including Thursday when the event hadn't even started yet and people were just picking up badges. WSCC has been doing it for years, likely just to keep general "undesirables" from wandering into the con space just to use the bathroom either legitimately or for illegitimate reasons. This thing isn't that uncommon for Seattle businesses in general though, a lot of places even have key codes you have to enter just to get in, typically obtained by being a customer.

    Now as far as enforcement goes, it seems like sometimes there's someone there enforcing it, sometimes there's not.

  • Invictus88Invictus88 Registered User new member
    My PAX experience generally mimics my feelings during the lifetime of a shopping mall.

    When it first arrives:
    • There's an intangible excitement. Everything is new. You get a real sense of exploration as you walk the corridors/halls. Surprises around every corner.
    • Vendors flock to the event; Nobody knows how it will turn out but there's a real sense of opportunity to be had.
    • Since these are uncharted waters, the vendors do everything they can to entice customers; animated employees; swag left and right; brand new displays; presentations for new games / entertainment opportunities fill the schedule.
    • There's not enough time to take it all in.
    • Owners of the mall are still hard at work brainstorming ways to bring in new customers.

    Now:
    • You've been down this road before. The landmark stores are still there for the most part (Expo Hall, Panels, Acquisitions Incorporated, Omegathon, Tabletop area, etc);
    • The ones that leave (Riot, Blizzard, WOTC, Paizo, etc) are mourned. The vendors/stores that come in to replace them aren't quite as good as before.
    • It's been a while since you've been really surprised by the venue. A vendor might have a new product -- neat. But the moments of awe seem to be missing somehow?
    • The vendors have seen this dog and pony show too. Their budgets more tightly refined; Less excess means more profit after all. Their predictions of revenue / exposure are likely on target. Their sense of urgency is lacking.
    • As attendees we know what to expect. We make beelines for exactly what we are looking for instead of browsing all of the wares. A brief look at the mall map/PAX schedule reveals the same layout as previous years for the most part. The plan is set. We have other stuff to do after all...
    • The folks running the event also have it down to a science. Sure, a new wrinkle might be added here and there but at this point this is a refined machine. "Let's package it up and take it on the road!" Open up venues on the other coast or down south; maybe even WAY down south.. Instant profit. Just add water. The scenery is a bit different but the formula is the same...
    • Somewhere along the line the soul kind of got lost...

    Note that this isn't a dig at any of the wonderful people who volunteer for this event. They have all been spectacular. Every year. But as a person who has gone to what used to be Prime and now is West since its inception the enthusiasm isn't where it was. The innovation just isn't what it used to be.

    nixter
  • every day's greatevery day's great Registered User regular
    edited May 18
    Agreed that West seems to have "matured" a bit since the days of Prime, and it seems that some of its magic has possibly been diluted and diverted to other PAX locations and elsewhere. That being said, it is still pretty great!! I also like the idea of it not being completely impossible to get tickets!!

    What I would really like to see at "West" 2018:

    Bring back massive, official, organized D&D games!!! Those were incredibly popular two years ago and sorely missed. If anything they needed to be expanded greatly rather than eliminated entirely!! Also bring back Pathfinder, Reaper miniatures, and any other tabletop RPG goodness that you can find!! But WOTC is local - why the heck aren't they there??!! I also note that Acquisitions Inc. is massive promotion for D&D - it's only fair that they actually show up at PAX!!

    More tabletop in general please!! The beauty of PAX is a meeting of minds (and hearts) via all dimensions of gaming - tabletop, console, handheld, PC, mobile, online, offline, tournament, streaming, semi-pro, whatever!!! But what has been particularly wonderful in my opinion has been the crossover between the digital and analog worlds!! Tabletop has been one of the best things in previous years but there wasn't as much of it in the WSCC last year. I'd like to see more tabletop exhibitors, more demos, more tabletop panels and sessions, more learn to play, etc.!! Also if you pre-announce where the auxiliary tabletop locations will be, then people can plan their hotel stays accordingly if they are interested.

    Fewer ticketed demos on the main floor!! Nothing is more frustrating than rushing to get to your favored game at 10:01am, only to find out that all of the demo and play slots for the day have been filled!! Nintendo was a particular nightmare boss battle last year - you had to register with club Nintendo and show up at a magic time and location to get a ticket before they ran out. In previous years Final Fantasy/Square Enix and D&D Adventurer's League (organized tabletop sponsored by WOTC) have been horrendous nightmares of tickets running out instantly. Oh, and I still have never managed to get one of those exclusive PAX pins - I've kind of given up after too many wasted hours.

    The Twitch thing has been weird for me. I like Twitch, and Amazon is local, but I'm not sure if it has been rolled out in the optimal way. Some of it seemed like a party that I wasn't invited to.

    More spontaneous Switch gaming!! So I know that the Switch is missing things like StreetPass, PictoChat and other convention-friendly networking features of previous Nintendo handhelds, but come on people!! We need more MarioKart, Splatoon, Bomberman, whatever spontaneous local multiplayer games are available!! I was stuck in various lines but nobody seemed to have a Switch or want to play. Of course 3DS can also do MarioKart and Super Smash Bros....

    More learn to play for all games There are lots of games I'd like to get into but they seem to have a steep learning curve. I was entranced by the retro game areas as well but some of those games seemed opaque and/or fiendishly difficult. I'd love to see players who are passionate about particular games run learn to play sessions as well as tutorials with advice on how to ascend these often daunting learning cliffs.

    Better directories, maps, and schedules for everything! PAX isn't bad, but I ended up missing some things because they were misprinted, missing others because I never knew about them, etc.. I'd like to see a list of all tutorials and learn to play opportunities.

    Better tabletop (and console and PC) free play matchmaking The tabletop (and console) lending libraries and free play spaces of all stripes are really great, and most games are more fun with more players, but how can you fill out your favorite game with another player or two, or find a table where people need players, or find someone who might be interested in teaching beginners to play a new game they had never tried before, or find people who might like you to teach them how to play your favorite game? I think there is supply and demand here but connecting the two could be assisted, perhaps by analog and/or digital lobbies and bulletin boards, or a standardized system of some sort.

    Meetups and birds of a feather opportunities. What is better than meeting up with a bunch of fans of your favorite game? Meeting hundreds of them and then playing massive amounts of said game, maybe even with the some of the game developers in attendance! PAX could definitely enable this.

    Anyway PAX is already great but I do think it can be made great(er) again!!

    p.s. Another thought: maybe this is more of a Dev thing, but I think it would be cool to have a game jam where PAX attendees could interact with game developers as they were creating new games in real time; then we could try them out and vote for the winning entries.

    every day's great on
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular

    Bring back massive, official, organized D&D games!!! Those were incredibly popular two years ago and sorely missed. If anything they needed to be expanded greatly rather than eliminated entirely!! Also bring back Pathfinder, Reaper miniatures, and any other tabletop RPG goodness that you can find!! But WOTC is local - why the heck aren't they there??!! I also note that Acquisitions Inc. is massive promotion for D&D - it's only fair that they actually show up at PAX!!
    WoTC was almost certainly busy preparing for HASCON, which was the week after PAX in 2017. There is no HASCON this year, so I think the odds are good WoTC will be back.

    vespachica
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