My boyfriend John and I made the easy trip from NYC to Boston again
this year for a combo PAX East/John-family visit.
For those of you unfamiliar, PAX East is the east coast version of the
gaming convention put on by gaming webcomic heroes Penny Arcade. It’s
good geeky fun. And no, we didn’t cosplay as Jaina Proudmoore and
Here’s some fun stuff we did.
The good people at Reaper had set up tables where anyone could grab a
free primed plastic mini, plop down, and get lost in painting it for
an hour. It was a relaxing zen thing to do in the middle of the crowds.
I painted a burly warrior dwarf and John painted a glowing green
Will Hindmarch, a writer for some of the Fiasco playsets, among other
things, did a great job running us through our first Fiasco session.
Fiasco is a Role Playing game in which you use dice, index cards, and
a few lists of choices to determine the relationships between
characters, needs, objects, and locations that you tie into your
story. Then you simply take turns constructing and resolving scenes
for each other and before you know it, you’ve written a pretty
engaging Coen brother’s knock off in 45 minutes.
Here’s a sketch of my character’s pivotal scene.
Having an experienced player/writer/GM lead us through is invaluable
and one of my favorite things about demoing games at PAX and GenCon.
We were even able to play on our own, with John’s brother, the next
day, having learned some tips from that first session.
The ACAM Arcade!
The American Classic Arcade Museum in new Hampshire hosts a room full of free-to-play arcade classic cabinets, and it’s probably my favorite thing at PAX. I love those old games. I had a chance to play Ms. Pac-Man and Galaxian and Frogger. These old games always impress me with their difficulty, elegance, and ability to illicit a lot of visceral lever-pumping.
We went to the ACAM panel later and enjoyed listening to the game designers wax nostalgic about those early days of video game design.
This game got a ton of support on kickstarter and should be coming out soon. There are a lot of zombie games out there, but this one may stand out because it pushes you to strategize around terrain and traps.
Those are my PAX highlights! I didn’t make it to everything I would
have liked, like the Wow Insider Panel or other game demoes, but I
think we rocked the PAX/family visit balance nicely.