09/29/2010

PAX Prime, SPX 2010, Wrestling Rings, & Broken Arcade Sticks Part 2

by Matthew Hawkins

All right, part two of my big personal photo dump!

PAX Prime 2010 (continued)

It didn’t really hit me how big PAX Prime was till I went outside to score a bite to eat…

… The entire city was crawling with gamer dorks at every street corner. Including cosplayers; caught this Merly Silverberg about the cross the street (the still cute MGS1 version, before she became mannish in MGS4)….

It’s a Daft Punk!

Back inside, I ran into this totally amazing zora get-up. The eyes actually blinked!

And here’s Frank West…

The always popular nurse from Silent Hill…

Back on the show floor, I was blown away by the Castle Crashers arcade unit; the HD display contained inside was HUGE

Like I said before, sorta avoided all the big name games. Instead, concentrated on the indie crop, and quite a few gems could be found. Like Retro City Rampage…

Then you had Solace, which could be best described as a Cave shmup and flOw. As the creators told me, it’s not so much a bullet hell but “bullet heaven”

I unfortunately never found the time to play Monaco…

… Nor Super Meat Boy, nor the new Jonathan Blow games. I know, I know. BUT, did get the chance to finally check out Retrograde…

… Game of the show for me, most definitely. For those who have never heard of it, it’s basically a reverse shump; everything is going backwards in time, so the primary action is to make sure your ship is in the right position to receive bullets that were expelled during the normal flow of time. In that sense, it basically becomes like Guitar Hero/Rock Band, since there are three colored lanes and is very rhythm oriented (guitar controllers are supported). Coming out eventually for PSN. And maybe also XBLA, which I hope, since all my Rock Band gear is for the 360.

Meanwhile, over at the Nintendo booth, didn’t play a thing due to the long wait for everything. Which meant no new Kirby for me, but I at least got the chance to gawk at it…

Now, despite it not being my thing, I could totally understand the long-ass lines for, say, Halo Reach. But for Metroid: Other M, a game that had already been released? Boggled my mind. At least the booth had the rather delectable looking Zero Suit costume from the equally superb live action commercial on display…

All throughout the convention you could find large assortments of folks, sprawling out in beanbag chairs and engaging in multiplayer adventures in Dragon Quest 9…

… Unfortunately, was never able to get close enough to see what was in that displayed, seen way towards the back. Oh well. Meanwhile, upstairs, in the free-play console gaming room was where I found this…

… Which most of you have probably already seen by now via my post a week and a half ago. And because all my other pics within the console gaming room came out like crap (am super lucky the ones of the R2 unit came out fine), here’s a not so bad one of the PC one…

Every year they have a contest to see how has the most tricked out PC case mod. And here was this year’s winner, in the form of a working scooter…

Each year PAX also sponsors a… get this… dress up your My Little Pony contest. Here we have last year’s winner…

Back at the table; here’s Mar? doing a Pokemon sketch while sitting on a chair that has both a Genesis 2 and Sega CD 2 that either Cory S passed along to Adam (he had one just lying around, not doing much with it)…

That’s also where I finally met Ashely Davis, and dressed up as Prinny no less!

… Here’s a side view of her most excellent garb…

There was also a Peter Pan found near our table (who was happy that I knew who she was supposed to be; everyone had been mistakenly calling her Link)…

Yet another super fab on the spot poster for us, courtesy of Corey L

By this point, things had gotten ridiculously slow for a late Saturday afternoon, which was when we expected to be busiest. Even Pete from Anamanaguchi had little to do, except pose for pictures…

Adam actually let Pete get a sneak peek at Return Of The Quack, which finally became public recently!

Unfortunately he didn’t stick around for long and totally missed his biggest fan. Who at least left behind a little piece of himself…

Pete also totally missed Adam trying to eat his new Genesis/Sega CD combo…

It was time again to call it a day. Afterwards was dinner with the Fangamer crew, then drinks with Cory, Corey, Mar?, and Jacob, plus John Green (who was part of the PAX 10 indie circle, to help promote Puzzle Bots) joined us! That night was also when I ran into a Spaceballs cosplayer, a dude dressed up as Barf…

We all ended up walking up north, away from downtown and towards the college area (I think), to some bars that the natives we were with frequent. It was quite the trek, but it was no big thing for the dudes (nor myself as a hardcore pavement pounder), and that’s when it hit me: I was with folks who can deal with Seattle sans an automobile! They either just walk or use mass transit, an idea that seemed completely preposterous to past friends when I asked if I could live in the Emerald City in the same fashion as I do in the Big Apple (and I basically took their word for it). Which now makes my idea of returning back to my home state no longer such an insane idea. Though that’s still quite a few years off… but it’ll be nice to know that I have some cool new folks to hang out with if I ever do so!

Anyway, onto day three; much like the previous two mornings, the cast from Halo Reach made sure our area was safe and sound…

The first cosplayer of the day was dressed as a character that everyone knows I’m gaga for, Claire Redfield…

Everyone, meet Sam; here’s easily Anamanaguchi’s biggest fan! Check out Sam’s homemade Pete Berkman pin…

For perhaps obvious reasons, I found this dude’s shirt pretty funny…

Back to cosplay; it’s Peach with Mario…

Hey, someone from Valkyria Chronicles!

Yet another RE hottie; Ada Wong…

I found C. Viper and Juri just hanging out by the console gaming room floor…

Saki and Aya from OneChanbara…

A Pokeman and her trainer…

And a bunch of Team Rocket members…

… In case anyone was wondering: the overabundance of female cosplayer pics as compared to male ones. What else can I say? There were hardly any dudes dressed up, don’t ask me why. Hell, I barely saw any dressed up as the Team Fortress 2 clan, that’s almost a given at any convention. Though there were plenty of dudes where these silly looking construction cones, given out as part of some Plants vs Zombie’s promotion (I think). Anyway, a pair of pics from the MMO portion of the show floor; I thought these EVE Online models were fairly hawt…

… And I’ll admit it; I stood around for way too long, watching folks play some Warcraft-like game (could be the real deal, I honestly don’t know) on the gigantic screen…

Back at the Attract Mode table, here’s Cory S showing off EXP, aka the greatest game zine that the whole world has yet to experience (yet). And which he only had one copy of, the bastard…

… I cannot emphasize enough how f’n beautiful the thing is. And here’s Corey L with some Street Fighters…

So in addition to his prints, plus a few mini comic/zine, Corey was selling buttons. All of which were contained in this…

Hey, it’s Gerritt and Reid from Fangamer, paying us a visit…

As the show began to window, I felt the need to once again pull out my favorite animu molestation game for the iPhone (you know, that one). And here’s Corey giving it a spin…

… Hey Hilary, good news: your record is far from being broken.

Eventually, that was that; PAX was officially over! As Adam and I packed things up, the place quickly become a ghost town, hence why I really have no idea how Cory S got ahold of this Mega Man arm cannon…

The very last pic from the show…

… Like I said before, PAX Prime 2010 was a mixed bag. Attract Mode didn’t do nearly as well as we had hoped, but a bunch of new business opportunities came about during the trip, so it wasn’t a total loss. Plus I got to hang with Adam yet again, which is always tons of fun, plus made a bunch new friends, easily the best part! We”ll be back next year, for sure, but with one key addition: our women folk, front and center. Cuz the strong sales during day one, when Jen De La Vegetables was around, made one simple fact crystal clear; conventions don’t have booth babes for nothing!

BTW, I didn’t even get the chance to talk about the nightmare it was getting out. I guess for those details, simply go back a few weeks in my Twitter feed, in which I live-blogged how my luggage almost got stolen, right in front of me, in a crowded city bus in Harlem, on my way to the airport (which I swear to God I will NEVER do again; the amount of money saved was so not worth the aggravation). As for the most condescending bags of pretzels ever that highlighted the crappy themselves (btw, do yourself a favor and avoid Air Tram like the plauge as I’ll be doing from this point forward) would take too long to explain, without visual aides.

But enough about PAX, onto SPX! To be concluded (right over here to be exact)…

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