PAX 2008 Day 1 Impressions


Posted August 29, 2008 - By Brian Leahy

PAX 2008 has kicked off and is actually still underway. The activities don't let up until 3AM PST tonight and there's plenty to do for gaming fans of all ages. PAX is best described as part games convention and part LAN party. It isn't a news-based show like E3, Leipzig, or Tokyo Game Show, but if you are looking for a show to get your hands on the latest and upcoming games start booking your tickets for PAX 2009 now.

A reported 50,000 gamers will attend PAX this year and the atmosphere is staggering. It's a convention, party, and concert series all rolled into one under the common banner of gaming.

Where else is the public going to get serious hands-on time with upcoming games like Gears of War 2, Resistance 2, Tom Clancys' EndWar, Left 4 Dead, StarCraft II, Guitar Hero: World Tour, Rock Band 2, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, Warhammer Online, and so much more?

Whether you're an old-school PC gamer, hardcore console gamer, casual gamer, or even board gamer... there's something at PAX for you.

Today, we got some games of Gears of War 2, Epic and Microsoft's upcoming Xbox 360 exclusive. Overall, the multiplayer game impressed us with a nice fit between new gameplay and comfortable recognition from the first game. Stay tuned for our in-depth hands-on report with the title.

We also got to play the latest build of Resistance 2, which was noticeably better than the already great E3 build of Insomiac's marquee shooter sequel. The PS3 game should make a big splash with its expanded multiplayer offering later this year. We also got to try out the newest version of the long-awaited StarCraft II, but we weren't able to play long enough to give you a good report. We will be checking Blizzard's RTS at Blizzcon in October, but rest assured, the game is looking phenomenal and looks even better in person.

There's almost too much to do at the Penny Arcade Expo. Upon entering the convention center, you'll come upon a decently equipped food court. Sitting on top of this first level, however, are three floors of gaming bliss. Floors 2 and 3 house the open gaming lounges, which let gamers check out games and controllers for almost every console to play with friends and strangers. There's a large room for the Bring Your Own Computer LAN party with several tournaments.

The fourth floor holds the exhibit hall with booths that evoke memories of the E3 of old. PAX is decidedly what E For All wants to be, but it comes with the nerd cred required to pull an event like this off. This is an event for gamers, by gamers.

Kick back, enjoy the rest of your Labor Day Weekend, and ask yourself why you didn't book tickets to PAX 2008.

Friend of G4, Jonathan Coulton, encourages you come see him at PAX!

PAX 2008 Day 1 Impressions


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