If this sounds like a sales pitch, I apologize.
PAX East is a phenomenal time for any gamer. Casual or old, strictly old school or exclusively current gen, there is no better convention in the Northeast to celebrate our beloved hobby. The collection of people, personalities, game reveals and games to buy create a feel-good atmosphere.
If you are a first time attendee and feel a little overwhelmed, don’t be. Then again, it is a massive convention center. And there is going to be plenty of chubby dudes taking up space. And a lot of standing in line.
Crap. I just gave myself anxiety. Which is how I felt about certain aspect of PAX East last year. What do I do, what do I say, what do I…wait.
These are things I was worried to say to Alanah Pearce. And the convention. Anyways, getting off topic.
Everyone out there has their anxieties. No one is perfect. Heck, I have so many paranoid ticks I could double as Tweak from South Park.
To reassure any first timers out there, I will tell you there are five parts of PAX East that you either shouldn’t be afraid of or just shouldn’t do. Or go ahead and do. I mean, I’m just some goofy bald guy who really likes Castlevania.
1. DO NOT be afraid to go up and meet your favorite gaming personality!
Remember, they are people just like us. They were in your shoes once too, and for some of them, they still get nervous and excited around other gaming personalities. They love to interact with fans and talk games just as much as we do.
For any aspiring game journalists out there, this is also a great way to start breaking out of your shell and talking to people.
2. DO NOT be afraid to ask questions at panels!
Ever go to a panel that is just so awesome that you want to say something, but then get dry mouth and embarrass yourself in front of everyone. Or is that just me?
Projecting aside, never be afraid to think you’re question is dumb or silly. In fact, most panelists would love a silly question once in a while!
3. DO NOT expect to play the games immediately!
Uncharted 4 was one of my most anticipated games last year. The inclusion of the demo made me psyched to play.
Now, I wasn’t excited to stand in line. At all.
If you really want to play a game, and if you’re a huge fanboy/fangirl, it’ll be worth the wait! Just tough it out! If you’ll feel bored, take a couple of goofy SnapChats.
4. DO NOT bring a small amount of cash!
Retro game collecting is expensive. Heck, gaming is expensive. You want some sick gaming schtuff from PAX East? Bring some cash. A good amount of cash. Don’t make it rain or anything, but be prepared to spend a decent amount of money if you want to pick up a retro game you’ve been eyeing.
Or in my case, half of my tax return for Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance.
5. DO NOT go alone!
I swear to Lemmy (Airheads reference, look it up!), nothing is more boring, or lonely, than going to a convention alone. Eating alone is fine. Watching a movie alone is fine. Going to a gathering like this one is not.
Gaming is one of the most friendly and diverse subcultures out there, but it won’t feel like that if you don’t out and interact with others. Going with a group of close gaming friends is even better and it makes the whole weekend that much more special.
I attended my first PAX East with the Lifecast Fam, (before we were the Fam actually…weird…we were just…friends) and it’s a memory I will hold for a long time.
For anyone attending for the first time, or the first time in a long time, stay safe, have fun and enjoy some games!