In Pictures: 13 weird and wonderful sights at PAX East 2015

In which the author indulges in gratuitous nerd nostalgia.

  • PAX East 2015! I mean, right?! For a festival set up by a couple guys who have a popular gaming-focused webcomic, PAX (the Penny Arcade Expo) sure has grown fast. Started in 2004 in Seattle, PAX is now a group of four annual festivals of nerd culture, held in Boston (PAX East), Seattle (PAX Prime), San Antonio (PAX South) and Melbourne (PAX Australia.) Here’s a look at the expo floor from PAX East 2015.

  • Heavy and Medic (Team Fortress 2) This heavy is in a good mood, likely because he’s got a medic close by – key for pushing the front of the enemy position. Pretty good team.

  • You can buy a mustache! I wish I’d known it was this easy – the world would have been spared lot of awkward, peach-fuzzy experiments. Should’ve gone to PAX sooner.

  • Kratos (God of War series) I’d have asked this guy about where he got the makeup done, but then I suddenly decided to walk the other way very quickly. Sure, he seems calm enough now, but have you SEEN what he does in those games?

  • The Ghostbusters The good Drs. Perry ensured the place was largely free of specters, wraiths, ghouls, ghasts, and other apparitions. At least, as far as that is possible at a place like PAX East.

  • Dr. Gordon Freeman (Half-Life) Dr. Freeman graciously took time out from his game of Magic: The Gathering to show off the gravity gun for this picture, instead of using it to fling me out of the building and into Boston Harbor. Perhaps unsurprisingly, he didn’t have a lot to say.

  • All of the dice! Tabletop role-playing-games use complex systems of dice rolls, involving dice with four, six, eight, 10, 12 and 20 sides. Suffice it to say that the author at 15 years old would have found this display immensely exciting, and even in his present incarnation, he found it merited some serious study.

  • It’s “Weezer!” I got asked to leave after I heckled them and demanded they play stuff from Pinkerton. (Not really. I actually really like “My Name is Jonas.”)

  • The lines! There were some crazy long lines to get into various events – this one is for something involving Magic: The Gathering that was never fully explained to me.

  • Walking in This is what you see when you enter the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center for PAX East. It’s a pretty busy convention floor, I think you’ll agree.

  • From above Part of the show floor. I think Row 12 is the line for people who liked the new Thief game.

  • The mobile lounge PAX was kind enough to provide plenty of beanbags and other sittables in various locations away from the expo floor.

  • Settlers is serious business The serious boardgame for serious geeks, Settlers of Catan was being played in a lot of different places at PAX East. Note the range of emotions even on the three faces most visible.

  • This is a big LAN party Ah, LAN parties, where everyone lugs their bulky gaming rigs over to somebody’s house for big rounds of Warcraft III and Unreal Tournament. Or, these days, everyone apparently goes to play much newer games on one of the 700-plus pre-made machines at PAX East’s LAN.

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