' Tara Donovan - Animator: PAX East 2010 Gaming Conference - er, "Festival" in Boston

PAX East 2010 Gaming Conference - er, "Festival" in Boston

March 29, 2010

I had an amazing time attending PAX East 2010 in Boston with my fellow animation-vet husband, Phil, who's an avid gamer and Penny Arcade fan. Not known as a huge gamer or Penny Arcade follower myself, I decided it was high time I went looking for a community of gamers who were more my speed -- i.e. nerds. The PAX event has a reputation as a smaller, more indie event than, say, E3 which is the size of a small city. Still, at last count, somewhere in the range of 60,000 nerds like us showed up to play and watch people playing, all sorts of different games on every kind of platform, even board games.

I loved the vibe at PAX, even if it involved about 2 hours of waiting for every hour of actual entertainment. We made the most of our waiting and did what everybody else was doing... played video games. Ok, I mainly got stuck playing Tap Tap Revolution on my phone and reading my book, but it's a start! Tell you the truth, a lot of stuff was completely sold out. Looks like they've outgrown the Hyde Convention Center...

My original mission was to discover independent game products targeted at my demographic. Total strike out! Oh well. My quest will continue!

My secondary mission: to hang out with a gaming community in their natural habitat, was a smashing success. Fun people. I had a great time. People who like beanbags are cool.

I also had a wonderful visit to Boston -- we found a great B&B close by, squeezed in a quick visit to the New England Aquarium, ate tons of seafood, and did a swift walking tour of the old part of town before the weekend was over. We also had a blast at the oldest jazz club in Boston, Wally's Cafe. This weekend getaway in the middle of an intense project really helped restore my spirits.

Oh, and at $50 for a weekend pass, the PAX conference has to be the best deal in game town.