PAX Prime 2012: A First-Timer's Experience

By Mike Rosenberg

I've heard many stories of amazing displays, tons of games, and great vibes from the Penny Arcade Expo. However, it wasn't until this year that I finally managed to make it to Seattle for everything that PAX Prime had to offer.

Also, it was my first trip to Seattle. I think I found my new favorite city. This place is amazing! The food, culture, and atmosphere in the city are unlike anything I've experienced yet. Of course, it's never too difficult to find a good cup of coffee either, and as a certified coffee snob, I approve of the selection.

Back to PAX Prime: the scope of how many people are here, checking out the latest in gaming, is something I was not prepared for. As an exhibitor, I got a chance to look around at the fairly empty booths of the two main exhibit halls. But then, once those doors opened...

They came to game. They all came to game.

Cryptozoic's booth, located in the Skybridge that is nestled between the two major exhibit halls, gets a lot of foot traffic. A lot of foot traffic.

On display this weekend are our latest games, Hot Rod Creeps and the 3012 Deck-Building Game, as well as the much hyped DC Comics Deck-Building Game, which will be due out later this year. Fans has been dropping in since the convention doors opened, and the crowd around the tables for the DC Comics Deck-Building Game has yet to die down.

At one of the tables, volunteer Brittanie Boe called me over to sit in for a round or four of The Big Bang Theory Party Game while one of our hard-working volunteers took their break. I joined in on some four player action...and was positively served. There was no way I was going to compete against my opponents and their hilarious responses to the many scenarios that came up. All being said, however, I did feel like I scored a minor victory in one of the rounds. The scenario was "Cupid should shoot these two", and my two cards were "Enchanting Bunny and Rabbit Whisperer". A match made for the ages!

Volunteers have been enjoying The Big Bang Theory Party Game this weekend. 

All that said, The Skybridge is just one small part of a massive convention center. The Washington State Convention Center, unlike many, is built upwards. Rather than expanding out into an open area of the town, it is built in the heart of downtown, and accommodates its large events with six floors of space for attendees and staff.

If you haven't seen the convention center in all of its glory, take a look.

Simply massive.

PAX Prime, famous for its video game action, is playing host to many great displays this year. Perhaps the biggest of all of them is from League of Legends, as Riot Games was running their regional championship event at PAX Prime. It was pretty hard not to know what was going on for League of Legends that weekend since there were sweet banners everywhere, but what really put a smile on my face was seeing this.

Amumu found a friend!

The cosplays, both from professionals hired to promote for the various companies as well as the fan-made ones, were some of the best I had seen. Plenty of great designs were represented. Amumu, featured above, was amazing, and it was not the only one either. Brand ambassador Christina "VanCleef" Sims was also on the show floor, and ran into some pretty amazing costumed characters.

Scary!

I also have to comment on the attendees. Now, I've met some pretty awesome people at conventions in the past. But PAX Prime goes beyond that; everyone has been a joy to meet. Plenty of nice people have come by the Cryptozoic demo area as well as the tournament room in 310. You guys are all amazing!

There is no question that I will attend PAX Prime next year as well. The number of video game displays, demos, free arcade games, tabletop action, panels, chats, and all parties left me speechless, and I still feel like I missed a few things here this weekend. I guess I'll have to add some new things to do into my schedule for next year, but it's just so hard to find the time to do everything.

Well done, PAX staff. You've got me hooked!

Rosenfloggen's picture Mike Rosenberg

Mike Rosenberg has been a long-time trading card game fan and an active freelancer in the hobby game industry since 2004. He wrote, editted, and managed web content for Cryptozoic Entertainment from March 2012 until October 2013.