I am sad to say that PAX East is over once more and it is time for me to head back home. This weekend I was the Editor-in-Chief and the guild leader. Wednesday I go back to being an engineer. I am very happy to say that this was, without a doubt, the most successful con Epic Slant Press has ever had on both a business and personal level. Everything went so smoothly and I’m pretty darn sure that everyone had a great time. I did and saw so much I know I’m going to miss things but I’m going to try my best to cram it all in. Over the next day or so all of our media articles will be coming out for you to enjoy. Klassi (Patrick) did a lot of interviews and he has a whole notebook to write up. Until then, enjoy my disjointed timeline.
PAX in a blur
We arrived on Thursday after a very smooth flight. The con itself was not open but we got settled in and started making contact with others. We met up with our good friends Matt, Will, and Stephen (Au). Once we found them, we got in touch with Stephen (GL), Mike, and Richard from Guild Launch. They invited us all over to their hotel to play Small World so we went there. Teams were formed, alliances were made, and we played until the wee hours of the morning. Team shrimp (Matt and Mike) ultimately won but not as big as we thought. Team undead-flying rat was a close second. Team troll (Kristen and I) lost horribly.
We woke up early Friday so that we could get down to the media event. We had one hour before the show to go and play anything we could. We left Kristen at the booth and headed out. Patrick bee-lined for Borderlands 2 while Stephen (GL) and I checked out a few of the independent games. The one that really caught my attention was AirMech. It was clearly inspired by Robotech/Macross and looked like a really zoomed in version of Star Craft. I thoroughly enjoyed it. You could transform from a plane to a mech and kill your opponents. After that we checked out Smite from HiRez Studios. Imagine League of Legends but in a third person style of play. It was outstanding. The characters are all based on different ancient pantheons and it played pretty well. No tab targeting. Just swinging the blade. I’m hoping to connect Patrick with Todd Harris to do an interview about it. It wasn’t too much longer after that when the doors opened and people started flooding in.
The morning was pretty busy for Guild Launch with a lot of people coming in to check out their guild hosting service and my books. That also gave the opportunity for people to come find me as I had a book signing each day from 1 to 2 pm. From my guild I had: Dresden, Grim, Jaego, Kayin, Miric, Mist, Slainte, Starla (and his lady friend not-April). Starseeker and Vandrek from Midnight Aeternus also came to visit us. We also met up with Tramell from Press2Reset and exposed him to our insanity. He handled it well! It was also my distinct pleasure to meet Green Armadillo in person! He made time in his busy schedule to come see me and it was great! I was also very pleased to meet Dellmon from EQ2 Talk. He was a hell of a nice guy and a lot of fun to talk to. We shared podcasting strategies and I left Aliscious a voice mail I hope she received. Stubborn from Sheep the Diamond also came out to see me and that was just awesome. We didn’t get to speak too long but he and his friends were great. Kristen and I were also lucky enough to have lunch with Linda Carlson, her friend Rich (who is as awesome and as nice as she is), and Seraphina Brennan from WB games. It was great to catch up and have some quiet time. Linda has always been so kind to us. Any chance I get to spend with her I consider time best spent. The folks in the booth next to us (International Publishing Marketing) were super awesome. They were writers like me and put up with all the insanity that we carried out at the booth. They truly are great people that I look forward to staying in touch with! Beyond those named we had a ton of people come by the booth to talk to me about The Raider’s Companion, raiding, guild leading, and life. I’m certain I’ve forgotten someone and for that I apologize. There were just so many people there it was amazing!
In the tradition of DragonCon Stephen (GL) and Mike asked if I would be the raffle caller for their raffle. I of course agreed and it went exceptionally well. The highlight of it was me throwing inflatable swords at people in the audience after screaming, “CLOSE YOUR EYES, SWORD INCOMING!” Thankfully, the folks in the IPM booth next to us filmed the whole thing and will be putting it on YouTube. Expect that link to come sometime soon!
What I played
I make it no secret that I’m not really a console gamer. If it isn’t a PC title I don’t care. I’m also not interested in sitting in a four hour line to play something. No… when I’m at PAX I want to play in the table top area! In that area we were fortunate to have a really great “Learn to play D&D 4e” GM named Jason. He was hilarious, fun, and we had a great time. We also talked them into letting us bring 12 players to a game where we had another great GM! We also played a late night and this silly game of Hero Clix. Suffice to say I said “I’m Spiderman” about 30 times and took 3rd place. The guy running that game was exceptional. We enjoyed it. Kristen bought a card game called “Kittens in a Blender.” It was outstandingly fun. No actual kittens are harmed and part of the sale goes to a no-kill cat shelter. Miric bought a game called “Who is the traitor” which is a bit different but very fun as well. Mike also bought this game called Epic Spell Battles which was hilarious and insane. On the video game front I played the AirMech game, Smite, Neverwinter Nights online, Raiderz, and maybe a handful of other things that weren’t really memorable. This doesn’t count as playing but Reaper Miniature was running a “pick one / paint one” booth. They let you pick a free miniature and paint it for free for an hour. So a huge thank you goes out to them for that. I also achieved my victory of not coming home with a ton of Magic cards. I only have the deck from the swag bag.
Things I’ll never forget
The things I will remember most (in no particular order) are:
-Lunch with Linda
-Epic Spell Battles (You have to buy this game)
-Holding Kristen and Mike’s hand as we walked down the hall
-Dinner with everyone (The only time we got to see Jaego)
-Just hanging out in the booth with the Guild Launch guys (They’re great people)
-Kittens in a blender
-Running past the tank to smack the dragon in the face with my mace and living.
-Mist bringing me my crown
If I missed you, misspelled your name, improperly assigned you, or any other slight please don’t think it is intentional! I am just trying to remember all of the wonderful things that happened on this trip and there are just so many. I truly was happy to talk to everyone I met and look forward to following up with everyone I can. Everyone have a safe trip home and I’ll see you on the other side!