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PAX East 2013: Day 1

April 1, 2013

in Blog,PAX

After losing our sweet kitty Inari, we kept ourselves busy with work and preparation for PAX East. We knew that nothing would make us feel better than meeting awesome people and playing awesome games at PAX East.

PAX East 2013

The letter says "So, what's going on, attendees of the REAL PAX?!"

We flew into NYC on Thursday 3/21 so I could get a haircut before PAX and had ramen at Minca.

PAX East 2013

It's been more than 5 months since the last time we had ramen at Minca.

Then we hopped on a BoltBus and arrived at the hotel in Boston around 8:30 PM. We had dinner with my tired but excited co-workers who had been in Boston since Tuesday to set up the booth at the convention center.

Even though I now work for The Behemoth, Derek and I still come to PAX as attendees. The Behemoth has a super experienced staff and usually don’t need my help, besides we love going to panels and checking out games as much as we can.

A couple of days before PAX East, there were many exciting announcements flying around the internet. The Behemoth announced the release date for their new game BattleBlock Theater (which is April 3rd. Mark your calendar!) Supergiant Games announced the new game they’re working on. And Double Fine and Capybara Games announced a super limited game bundle box set. It comes with a floppy disc with a steam code for the bundle on it. Also the floppy contains a racing game with characters from Capybara games and Double Fine games.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

View from the room

PAX East 2013: Day 1

This was taken around 8:15 am.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

By 8:30 am, the line was wrapped around and extended towards the hotel.

Friday morning, we entered the Exhibitor hall early with exhibitor badges and walked around to take some photos before the place got PACKED.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The glorious Behemoth booth (pre-show)

PAX East 2013

Cat Guard statue! (pre-show)

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Supergiant Games' new booth featuring gorgeous art from their new game, Transistor. (pre-show)

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Double Fine / Capy booth (pre-show)

PAX East 2013: Day 1

2 headed Capy!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Brutal Legend station (pre-show)

After we checked out our favorite booths on the floor, we headed to get in the line for the Keynote by CliffyB. I knew that the game bundle box set by Double Fine and Capybara Games was going to be super popular… So for the very first time, I decided to skip the Keynote and ran to the booth of Double Fine and Capybara Games while Derek attended the Keynote. I was soooo glad that I did this. There were only 200 of the bundle box made, and they were sold out pretty much right away.

PAX East 2013

10 of 200! High-five!

PAX East 2013

Also I bought all the T-shirts they had at the store for Derek and myself.

Penny Arcade Q&A
After that, I headed to the main theater to join Derek and our friends for the Penny Arcade Q&A. The Q&A was filled with moving stories, awkward questions, food gifts, and laughter as usual. Even though the Qs are always very similar in each PAX, we still go because of hilarious As by Jerry and Mike. This year, Jerry showed up in the “Penny Arcade robot” costume because of one of their Kickstarter reward stretch goals.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

"I know someone will come up and tell us a heartwarming story and I look like this." And yes, it happened.

After the Q&A, we headed to the next panel!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

On the way to the next panel. The view of the entrance to the Exhibitor Hall.

Get Hired in Video Games Marketing
Pete Hines [Vice President, PR & Marketing, Bethesda Softworks], Cara Scharf [President, Fearless Media], Ed Davis [Account Director, AKQA]

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Their advice: Don't burn bridges in the online world.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Question time! There wasn't enough time for everyone but Derek got to ask them a question afterwards.

Then we hit the Exhibitor Hall to check out some games.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Behold!! The first booth entering the Exhibit Hall was the Behemoth booth!

PAX East 2013

Look at the line to the Behemoth merch!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

We had tons of new merch, including the Bitey Bat Hat and the Behemoth chicken plush I designed!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Long lines to play the game too!

PAX East 2013

I don't know who this is but an awesome costume!

There were some upcoming AAA games like Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, The Last of Us, Saints Row IV, Watch Dogs, etc… but what we were really looking forward to was the Indie Mega Booth. We really enjoyed playing tons of indie games at the Indie Mega Booth at PAX Prime 2012 and when they announced the list of games for PAX East 2013, we checked out the trailers of each game and made a list of what we wanted to check out. Here are some photos of the booths of the game we checked out before or are looking forward to.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Guacamelee! by Drinkbox Studios

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Don't Starve & Mark of the Ninja by Klei (Derek looooooves Mark of the Ninja)

First game we checked out was Contrast by Compulsion Games. It’s a puzzle/platformer game where you can enter the world of shadows to solve the puzzles. The art style is very noir-esque and really pretty and the game mechanic looks very interesting too!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Contrast by Compulsion Games

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Hard to tell in this photo but your shadow can jump onto the shadow of the carousel horses.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The Swapper by Facepalm Games

PAX East 2013: Day 1

I don't play Hawken but their booth looked awesome.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Check out the detail on the stations!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The detail was crazy even at the bottom of the station.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Tengami by Nyamyam

PAX East 2013

And of course, Octodad: Dadliest Catch

PAX East 2013: Day 1

This time, they had an Xbox controller hooked up on one station.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Apotheon by Alientrap

PAX East 2013: Day 1

It was very stylish and the animation was smooth. We liked it a lot!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Electronic Super Joy by Michael Todd Games

We then walked by the Supergiant Game booth which had a 2 hour wait to play the demo!!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

O_O

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Lines for the demo and their merch booth.

PAX East 2013

Simple setup but very efficient.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The line got longer and longer as PAX East went on.

At the Double Fine/Capy booth, we got to play Double Fine’s new game Dropchord. It was hard to understand what was going on in the trailer but after playing the demo, it was actually pretty simple and made me want to keep trying to get better scores. You hold out two fingers to the monitor and the motion sensor called Leap Motion detects your fingers as you move them around. You have to control the line between the your fingertips to hit & avoid certain symbols. It’s simple but can be pretty hard at the same time. Each time I make a mistake, I’d be like “Oh crap! Okay I can do this better next time…” It was definitely addictive.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

You'll kind of look like a conductor when you play the game.

PAX East 2013

The two dots on the edge of the circle are where your fingertips are.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The Super Time Force stations were right behind us.

PAX East 2013

We played this at PAX Prime 2012, but this was a new build. I like how at each PAX we can watch a game as it evolves.

When we finished playing Dropchord, we chatted with Greg Rice of Double Fine and met another Double Fine staff member, Patrick Hackett. He thanked me for the 2-Headed Baby plush I made. I couldn’t be more flattered. Nothing makes me happier than meeting the people I make plush for. As we were chatting, Tim Schafer was just leaving the booth so Greg called him over. We had a chat about the plushes I made for the Behemoth, gallbladders, and a possible gallbladder plush.

As we were wandering around, we stumbled upon the Tearaway booth.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The Tearaway booth was so colorful and super adorable!!

Tearaway is an adorable PS Vita game by Media Molecule, the studio that created Little Big Planet. I absolutely love love love Media Molecule. Perhaps finally we’ll get a Vita when Tearaway comes out…! Their booth was completely covered by handmade papercraft! I can’t imagine how long it took them to set it up and I suppose they had to just throw it all away after PAX East was over.

PAX East 2013

One of the staff members was creating and adding papercraft during the show.

PAX East 2013

The details were absolutely crazy!

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Then we stopped by at The Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness booth to say hi to Jeff. I’m not saying this because I like Jeff, but I really do love the style of Rain-Slick. I grew up playing old school RPGs, so Zomboid’s art style and Jerry’s writing are like the ultimate combination of an RPG for grownups.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

The Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness booth

PAX East 2013: Day 1

And we walked around some more.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Sam Fisher from Splinter Cell

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Assassin's Creed: Black Flag. I can't really imagine a pirate assassin but sure...

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Twitch, I love your service but I really hope in the future you don't broadcast interviews and games SO LOUD throughout the show that I can't hear myself talk by your booth.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Square Enix had Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut for WiiU

After the Exhibit Hall closed, we joined the Behemoth staff for the mixer. Over drinks and snacks we chatted about how the first day went. Derek and I visited Supergiant Games to play their upcoming game, Transistor. While waiting for our turn, we talked to Jen Zee, Darren Korb and their new 3D artist Camilo Vanegas. We don’t know how many times we watched the trailer of Transistor after the announcement. The trailer has a Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex feel to it, and Jen Zee’s art is just breathtakingly gorgeous. After playing the demo, we felt that 2014 couldn’t come soon enough.

Wish we could’ve stay longer for the mixer but we had to leave for the last event of the night.

Actually, there was another thing we had to do before the concert. Which I’ve been meaning to do a little after Jamie Dillon was hired at Penny Arcade. I’ll write about it after I’m done with my PAX East posts.

Friday Night Concert
We never missed the V.G.O (Video Games Orchestra) concert at PAX. We are such huge fans that we even went to Boston for the full orchestral concert in October last year. This time, they had a small choir which was super awesome. Yes, they did play One Winged Angel. (a.k.a. “Sephiroth’s theme”)

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013: Day 1

Ingrid Gerdes sang Distant Worlds from FFXI and Snake Eater from Metal Gear Solid 3.

PAX East 2013: Day 1

PAX East 2013

The concert ended with "Still Alive".

After VGO, we went to get dinner with our friends, hung out for a bit and called it a night…

To be continued to the PAX East 2013: Day 2!

Check out PAX East 2013 set on my flickr to see more photos!

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