10 Tips for future PAX Attendees
Attending PAX is a dream come true. The event its self is a festival of booths, cosplayers, panels and more. The atmosphere is filled with the happiness and excitement of thousands of gamers all coming together to celebrate video games. It is impossible to have a terrible time at PAX (unless you are Mr./Mrs.Cranky Face) but there are key factors you will need to know to make your experience the most stress free and enjoyable.
Buy your pass early.
Three Day PAX passes are a hot commodity. They sell out quick and every attendee wants one. Make sure you check the Penny Arcade Expo website and twitter often for updates on pass availability http://east.paxsite.com/ Purchase your pass as soon as possible. Waiting until the last minute may limit you to a 1 day pass. NEVER risk buying a pass from a scalper. They may be counterfeit and 2-3x more the cost.
There is nothing worse then sweaty, sore, swollen feet to ruin your happy day of fan boying and frolicking through the Exhibition floor of PAX. I would recommend bringing 1-3 different pairs of shoes to wear depending on how many days you are attending. Having a fresh pair of shoes to change into every day will help keep your feet clean and comfy. I think the best shoes to bring are 1 pair of closed toed tennis shoes or flats for one day and then switching to a pair of cushioned sandals the next day to give your toes and feet a chance to breath and be free from the confines of close toed shoes. I DO NOT recommend foam flip flops.
Staying hydrated is very important especially with all the walking and talking you will be doing at the event. Drinking water will ensure a long day of energy and will also keep you from feeling cramped and tired the next day. I recommend bringing a water bottle or Nalgene that is easy to carry. There is water for sale at the convention center as well but there are often large lines anywhere food is being sold so if you do not want to wait in line to purchase water it may be best to bring your own and refill at a drinking fountain or bathroom sink if you don’t mind tap.
PAX is an experience you will want to remember forever but it is a bummer when your cell phone camera turns your epic picture with your favorite gaming celeb or dev into an unrecognizable blurry mess. Bringing a suitable camera with a flash is ideal for capturing every memorable moment of PAX. Also remember to charge your camera and bring the charging cable as well. There are usually free outlets around where you can plug in and charge up.
It is important to keep yourself fueled with good energy creating food during the event. You don’t want to find yourself feeling shaky and weak mid line to play Lollipop chainsaw so I suggest packing some fiber/granola bars and fruit to take with you as a healthy and energizing snack. The food sold at the convention center is usually fast food.
Comfortable fitting back pack or satchel.
Whatcha gonna do with all that swag? All that swag inside that bag? We all love swag but we don’t love to carry it around on our fore arms! Bring a back pack or comfortable fitting satchel to toss all your new T-shirts, posters, plushies and other great PAX swag in!
Come prepared to wait.
Several developers will have their latest upcoming titles available to play at their booth but due to the large volume of PAX attendees you will mostly likely have to wait in line to play any new game that is being show cased. Make sure you get to the event early enough to get in line. The exhibition floor closes at 6pm so make sure you give yourself plenty of time.
If you plan to attend PAX bring a friend! PAX is fun regardless but it is even more fun when you have another person to share your adventure with. Don’t have any IRL friends that want to go? Don’t be sad! There are thousands of other gamers at the convention and plenty of opportunities to meet and chat with other attendees. A great way to see who is planning to attend PAX is via twitter by discovering the #PAX hash tag.
Taking a taxi around the city can be expensive especially with heavy traffic you may end up paying a lot of money to go a short distance. The best way to lower the cost of traveling around is to walk. Booking a hotel within walking distance of the venue is ideal. It may cost a bit more but will save you time and money rather than taking a taxi miles to the convention center. If you must take a taxi the best way to cut down the cost is to share with other people.
Make sure you get plenty rest before you leave your home to attend PAX. Pulling an â€œall nighterâ€ before you leave may not be the best idea. You don’t want to spend all of Friday PAX day sleeping and missing out on the event all together. It is also important to have some down time during your visit. With all the excitement you may find yourself up until the AM hours of the morning so make time for a nap and keep yourself energized and feeling well.
With these tips in mind I hope you have the best PAX experience possible.