This will be my 2nd PAX South. I enjoyed the first one, but mainly spent my time people watching, connecting with college friends, and playing the demos in the TableTop Showcase. Since I’ll only be attending Saturday this time, I’ve decided to better plan out my limited time. This year, I’ve also got my CheeseViking Games Instagram to capture the moments. The true highlight of the trip will be hanging out with old friends.
10:30-11:30 Scouting for Game Design: A look at how game design and game theory promote critical thinking, creativity, and organizational skills for Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. (Or anybody, really). The focus of the panel is on learning the basics of game development and how people can start projects in their communities.
11:00 -1 I’ll scoot out of scouting a bit early to catch Magic: The Gathering PAX MTG Open: MniMasters. It’s been some time since I’ve played MTG casually and even longer competitively, but hey, it’s a free tournament. We’ll see if I’ve still got something left!
11:30-12:30 Assuming I bomb out of the tournament, there are two interesting panels at 11:30.
Esports are for Everyone: I am terrible at the popular Esports games, but I want to see the genre thrive and become more main stream. Activision is launching a full blown professional Overwatch League this year, so we might be closer to mainstream than we think!
Introduction to Modern Board Gaming: It’s always interesting to hear fresh perspectives on the industry and how it continues to be a growing force. This panel will focus on interesting gateway games and mechanics to lure people out of the “You play board games? Like Monopoly and Life??” mentality.
Nothing really jumps out that start at Noon, so if I’m done with my panels, I’ll head over to the open gaming area and try to squeeze in some games with friends…or possibly strangers (GASP!)
12:30- 1:30 Streaming 201 – I’ve got a ways to go on my Twitch channel but it never hurts to learn and plan for the future. It’s a shame I will miss the Streaming 101 introduction on Friday
There’s not much that catches my eye in the early afternoon, so a good time to grab lunch and see what the rest of the crew is up to.
3:30-4:30 – Everything You Wanted To Know About Kickstarter. I have a Love/Hate relationship with Kickstarter. It’s a great platform for indie developers and creators to launch ideas and fund their dreams, but, at least in the board game space, it’s increasingly being used as a pre-order system for the bigger companies. Funding an interesting idea is not hard if the idea is worth funding, but truly building a brand and string of successful projects is incredibly difficult and time consuming.
Another lull in the action until 7:00PM means dinner, a swing by the TableTop Showcase, and people watching!
7:00-8:00 – Playing Games with Weird Controllers – A guilty pleasure of mine is watching people play games in really bizarre ways. Super Mario on a DDR pad?! Modding the Guitar Hero guitar to play other games? Sounds awesome.
8:30 – Video Game Concert – Can’t miss this! Live video game music played a String Quartet, Substituting live music on a Castlevania speedrun, including death music, and a video game rapper. Sounds like the best part of the convention to me!
Here’s the full schedule for Saturday See you there!