The sun sets over the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre as PAX Australia comes to an end for another year. Here’s our wrap up of the last two days.
Although our schedule was roughly the same as day 1, things seemed a lot more relaxed. The first bit on our agenda was the For The Love of Gaming panel that I was a part of. We got there early and met with fellow panellists, Al Caynes of Hittin’ Crits, Tash Reyn of Save Game and Ben O’Brien of Big Head Mode. Matt Sainsbury of Digitally Downloaded was also to attend but unfortunately could not make it. As we were settling in, we were all wondering how many people would attend our small, humble panel. We settled at around seven people. As the theatre doors opened, we were very surprised to see 35+ attendees come in and listen to us. If you did come to our panel, many thanks for coming along. You were a wonderful audience.
We made our way to the expo hall after the panel and checked out a new upcoming indie title, called Black Annex. Created by Man Fight Dragon, the game is an isometric action title, themed around deception and espionage. The game is still in development, however we highly recommend you check out the latest news about this game from their official site.
Towards the end of day 2, we were starting to feel very exhausted from constantly walking through the sheer size of the convention centre. This however didn’t stop us from looking forward to the final day.
Our schedules were cleared, and it was time for us to chill and see PAX through the eyes of a regular attendee. The third day was spent mainly on attending panels. The first one we checked out was ‘The Changing Face of Games Journalism’, hosted by the GameSpot AU crew where they discussed how the course of video games journalism has shifted over time into different areas, including YouTube and streaming. The team also discussed about how each of them got into the jobs they have now, as well as how anyone can get into video games journalism.
Soon after, we made our way over to the ‘Game Reviews: Criticising the Critics’ panel where topics such as objective and subjective reviews, and numbered scores were discussed by a number of notable games reviewers within the industry (photo above). It was an insightful and entertaining panel, and overall I was really glad to have been there.
It was starting to get close to the expo hall closing, but we checked out one last game. We stopped at Bethesda where they were showing off their upcoming title, BattleCry. It’s a free to play, online combat game that is based around the dawn of the 20th century, where you select a warrior character and its class to level up. We got to play two matches of BattleCry and we were impressed with how intuitive and enjoyable it was. We think it will become a real hit for LAN parties. The beta will launch early next year, with Australia and New Zealand being the first to receive access to the game. We’ll have a preview article for BattleCry up soon.
6pm struck and the doors closed for the final time. Post PAX depression caught up with us, realising that such an awesome weekend was done and dusted for another year. The only bit of optimism we could scrape was knowing we could relax, have a sleep in and put up our feet before leaving Melbourne the next day.
PAX Australia is guaranteed to be in Melbourne for the next five years and from our view, everything was planned incredibly well. The expo hall layout, choice of venue, and the use of panel halls. But most of all, it was the lovely gaming community that came to the event. There were so many courteous, open-minded people wanting to meet up and socialise with fellow gamers who really made PAX all the more amazing. We definitely plan on attending next year’s PAX and we highly recommend you come along as well.