PAX Prime 2013 Coverage by Victoria Chik

September 23, 2013
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PAX Prime 2013 Coverage

Penny Arcade Expo, or PAX, is a large convention show that focuses on gaming, comics, and nerd culture. Since its first show nine years ago, PAX has grown to four events, two in Seattle, one in Boston, and another in Australia (which Beethy covered for us). Events range from a three-room Expo Hall, industry panels, video game tournaments, and open play areas where fans can gather and play together. This year Cosplay Photographers (Al Lin, Victoria Chik, Wei He, and Adam Patrick Murray) were fortunate to attend PAX Prime over this Labor Day weekend.

Into the Fray

As my first out-of-state convention, I didn’t exactly know what to expect of PAX Prime. Others had told me it was an amazing video game centric convention, that it was definitely worth the trip, and that I would have fun. I hadn’t been told that the Washington State Convention Center was a massive four or five stories. With every level holding delightful nerd activities put on by so many volunteers. After quickly regaining my composure from the happy place I had traversed to (there also might have be a moment where I was overwhelmed as well) I decided to explore. PAX offered a lot to explore and with only four days, easy it was not.

The Expo Hall was amazing where booth after booth showcased new technology and future games. While the amount of attendees at PAX were high, that didn’t deter anyone from waiting in line just to try out the newest games (or collecting swag, let’s be honest). Enforcers were extremely helpful as I found myself lost quite frequently the first day before I fully grasped my bearings. My personal favourite section of the Expo Hall was the Indie game section; where I found Contrast, ESJ, and Foul Play.

Cosplay and Photography

There is no denying that Washington State Conference Center provides so many beautiful locations for both photographers and cosplayers alike. Over PAX’s weekend the weather was wonderful that it was hard to believe we were in Seattle! Walking outside behind the convention center (getting past the smokers) provided a park area that made beautiful backgrounds for any video game cosplay. There were many League of Legends cosplays to be seen but equally, there were many impressive video game cosplays roaming PAX.

Tournament? Video Games? Where?

PAX Prime housed many tournaments during its four day span. From tabletop to PC, there was always a competition somewhere. Whether it be at the booths or in the console rooms, there was a game for everyone. If one wasn’t into watching or participating in a tournament, there were many free play rooms that, for staking your ID, would provide a daily game playing fix. Tabletop booths outside of the expo hall even provided game demonstrations that proved to make any rest enjoyable! There were Magic: The Gathering packet tournaments that laid hidden to those who sought to find it in the Annex as well.

Conclusion

PAX Prime, despite packed, was an enjoyable convention that literally left no nerd behind. It is geared towards gamers so don’t expect to see a whole lot of anime cosplays. Enforcers are there to answer your questions and they do a very good job at it. Plus they don’t bite (as far as I know). Do bring a handheld console or a friend, as the wait in line for games can be a while. PAX does have events that run through the day and night, so make sure you rest and be prepared for panels or events throughout the day but then again that goes for every convention!

You can also see more coverage photos on our PAX Prime 2013 Facebook Album.

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