There are plenty of wonderful articles on people's experiences at 2014's Penny Arcade Expo in Melbourne, Australia, such as PAX Australia 2014 - The Return of Awesome by Blue Room Games, so here is short account of the immense fun and celebrity run-ins that 93 Made Games had at this year's expo.
Thursday, 30 October
Touched down in Melbourne, found beer and food, spent most of the night at the Games Laboratory discussing the future of game design in Australia with the Tabletop Game Designers Australia group and then partook in gaming until late. Oh and we also met Mad Men actor Rich Sommer who played Sye Robertson's new game Robots and Rockets with us. Ended up playing Magic into the wee hours of the morning with Sye and Tish Robertson from Syelon.
Friday, 31 October
Happy Halloween! OK, so we didn't dress up... basically, because we were recovering from the previous night. Eventually made it into day 1 of PAX at 2:30pm. Quickly scouted the Expo Hall and then settled into the Tabletop Area to catch up with some local game designers, including Wez Lamont who had Ludicrous COGZ set up for giant-sized play, Allen Chang from Rule & Make who was showcasing Rise To Power, Nathan Hawkins who had a booth full of people playing Conjure and Al Caynes who was demonstrating his latest game El Luchador Fantastico Grande. We strongly recommend you head over to Kickstarter and back Al's project so you can get your own copy of his awesome game.
After the afternoon stint of gaming, we found more beer and food and then returned to PAX for Sean's panel on the Quest to fund Indie Board Games. He was joined by Alex and Paul from Blue Room Games, Wez from Raez and Phil from Adventureland Games. Check out the video of the panel below. Capped off the night by playing Magic and drinking alcoholic bevvies. No trend forming.
Saturday, 1 November
Rocked up at PAX at a more respectable 10am and made use of the time to check out all of the amazing offerings from indie developers of electronic and tabletop games. Played a bit of Gauntlet and Cards Against Humanity and, after finding ourselves engrossed in so much fun, realised that it was time for Anthony's panel - The Indie Board Games Panel - with Kate from Games We Play, Dann from Game Salute, Phil from Adventureland Games and Anthony (the other one) from Handwritten Games. After the panel, touched base with artist and graphic designer Lily McDonnell from My Beautiful Monsters. Surprise, surprise, finished the night playing Magic with Sye & Tish Robertson and Kim Brebach from Secret Base Games.
Sunday, 2 November
Finally a day free of panel obligations. Arrived at PAX at 11am and bummed around the Tabletop Area playing and demoing games. The big event was the Kangaroos vs England in the Rugby League Four Nations. High-fived Sam Thaiday in the street early that day, which obviously gave him the extra luck needed for the Aussies to knock over the Poms by 16 points to 12. Wound up at the Games Laboratory playing more games with Sye & Tish and Jason Kotzur-Yang from End Game Games. So. Much. Gaming.
Monday, 3 November
Departure day. Grabbed a quick meal and headed for a long Virgin Australia check-in line. Finally made it through to the departure lounge. Located medication for a manky cough, disappearing voice and puffy eye. Who says gamers don't know how to party hard?! Finished off our Melbourne adventure by playtesting Simon's new game whilst Matthew Lee from The Campaigner magazine watched on and took some snapshots.
Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) is a celebration of electronic and tabletop gamer culture. Go to the PAX website for more information on all Penny Arcade Expos.
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