So, PAX was a rousing success for the second year in a row. I survived on three hours of sleep a night and copious amounts of Bawls
, Bawls mints
, and the occasional cup of coffee. A big part of any Penny Arcade event is always seeing all the cool people you've gotten to know at previous PA events, and this year certainly held that up. There was lots of hanging out with Jacob
, Mike F., Robert, Mike O., Richard, Kristen, Bill, and (of course) Mike & Jerry themselves, plus lots of new people, like David and the awesome jedifreeman
, who was nice enough to let me sleep on his floor in Redmond so that I didn't have to try to bus back and forth from Seattle every day.
Thursday I spent most of the morning setting up console space in the freeplay area and the tournament area, much like I did last year. Just so you know, if you ever need tvs unpacked and 3 consoles hooked up to them and secured from theft, I'm your man. There was also some general lugging about of various crates and boxes in the exhibition hall. During the three days of the con itself, I never got above the 2nd floor, as I was constantly working in either the Exhibition hall (Bobby D. at the AA booth, you're awesome!) or as security in the theater. Friday night I was one of four enforcers who worked the Turbine party in a bar at the Doubletree. Turbine is a game company that (from what I hear) used to be a division of Microsoft in some way, but is now its own entity. They're best known for Asheron's Call 1 & 2, but they are also the current developers for two upcoming MMORPGs -- Dungeons & Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online. The party was to showcase DDO and included free alcohol for attendees over the age of 21. The Turbine people are really cool, and they all seem to be really in this business for the love of games, which is always gratifying to see in a developer. Plus, I got free t-shirts and dice from them.
I got to see preciousjade
while I was there. I'm afraid I wasn't too entertaining for them, as they arrived during one my lulls, where I was exhaustedly sitting in a chair guarding two doors from unauthorized entry. I think I may have seen covenantscave
from across the room in the exhibition hall, but at the time I was unable to leave what I was doing, and by the time I got to where I thought I had seen him, he was no longer anywhere to be found.
Strike on Sunday night and Monday, and it was pretty low-key, as everyone was already completely exhausted. Tearing things apart after the con is always a little sad, but it's also a great deal easier than setting them up. You also get to see who the really hardcore people are, who will continue to desert work and push their bodies past the breaking point in order to finish things up. There was a great after-party at Mike F.'s apartment building Monday night, which included beer, pizza, a lot of Mario Kart Double Dash, and general fun and hijinks with a great crew of people.
I will definitely be putting in a 3rd appearance next year if at all possible. Much love to my Dark Lord Felauher, my wingman Richard, PRD, the whole PA Inc. crew, and all the Enforcers who made this such a great event. I'll see you all at Child's Play