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Conventions: PAX 2012 was a great, I say, a honkin' good time

This year was--I say--was a heck of a time, the best of times, even. I had a whole gaggle of fellas hanging around with me (good people, really good people, just a little kooky sometimes, if you get my meaning). Now listen up now, everybody. I say, boy, are you paying attention!? Look sharp here!


Okay, we're done with that for now. I love The Fog to death, but I can't write a whole blog like that. It'll drive me insane. PAX was awesome, though, as I was saying. I had upwards of five guests staying at my place this year, and upwards of 15 piling in for the nightly parties. I'm going to give a whirlwind tour here of what I saw and did. I started out with the aim of going easy on the words, but they just kept flowing!


Tuesday?! That's right, in a surprise turn of events, Occams made it in late Tuesday night. I picked him up from the airport, promised to grill him some sausages when I got home, then abruptly fell asleep, leaving him to fend for himself. Luckily, he's a resourceful guy and ate some chicken nuggets.

I guess Tuesday was pretty short, huh guys?


Corduroy, COM, and Steezy also flew in this day to do some early sightseeing. They grabbed Occams from my place while I was toiling at work and whisked him around Seattle to see everything. They brought back some weird doughy thing that they put in my fridge and which later evolved into some kind of beating club.

My wife drove six hours to pick up our weird friend Colton Phillips from the faraway Port Angeles. Dag yo, we like having guests. WORTH IT.

In the evening we all went out to a rad local BBQ joint and got some delicious smoked meats for dinner. Across the street was this convenience store, where they tanked up on beer and Slim Jims.

I think the rest of the evening was spent basically playing Hidden in Plain Sight, right, guys?


Monk, SQID, and bbain all showed up on Thursday. I picked them up from the airport. Dixon drove up from wherever the heck he lives. Beyamor condensed out of a passing cloudmass sometime in the evening. Things were shaping up pretty well.

We hit up a pho place for lunch. Oh hey, I guess Bloodspray came along with us... visibly drunk, at that. It's like noon, hahaha.

The elusive Bloodspray came to Pho too.

We all went out to Dim Sum Thursday night. As my first experience with it, I was annoyed at how long a wait there was, but it was totally worth it. Dude, that stuff is mad good. Pork buns, dude. That's what it's all about. Unfortunately it was while we were out that Beyamor showed up. Being a cloud, he had no problem floating into my house and making himself at home.

SQID actually got in pretty late on Thursday, and had some kind of crazy adventure at the airport where he managed to walk out on a level that shouldn't have been accessible to arrivals. Dude is less a squid and more a ninja, apparently. When we got back home, people were all playing Cards Against Humanity. Fame Designer and Wolf Girl were also able to join! This went on for quite a while, so I guess it's pretty fun? It was real late when they left, and PAX proper hadn't even begun yet!


Bright and early, I started rousing people to get up and shower and make sandwiches to pack for the day at PAX. I'm kind of a fan of sandwiches, so I was well prepared with a selection of lunchmeats, spreads, bread, vegetables, and cheeses to make yourself the perfect PAX lunch. I think all of us availed ourselves of the ingredients, and let me tell you: it was very convenient not to have to take a break to get food!

He's probably thinking about code.

It wasn't exactly legal the way we crammed everyone into my poor, belabored Honda to get to PAX, but it was a beautiful day outside, and we had a nice little walk over. All of us had something pretty early we wanted to see. For me, it was the Idle Thumbs panel, my favorite pocast. You can't actually tell, but the dude on the far right happens to be Doug, from the Walking Dead games (caution: spoilers for the game farther down the page).

The Monk himself.

The big highlight of Friday at PAX was, of course, the Destructoid panel. Actually, to be honest, I was expecting a lot more craziness. I guess Dtoid got in trouble last year for too much craziness, so they had to tone it down. To be perfectly frank, the panel itself was a little boring, but the announcement of the animated Podtoid shorts was super cool, since I was already a fan of his previous works.

Bey and Law get friendly.

Funk approves of Isay Isay.

Max can't be bothered with Isay Isay. Fantastic photobomb by Swishiee.

The community picture afterwards is always pretty neat. In the interest of space, I'll just link to another post that has it covered adequately.

I spent a lot of time in the indie game area of the exihibition hall. I would tell you all about it, but bbain's done a much better job, so I'll just point you to that! Of course, Antichamber was my most anticipated game, carrying over from last year. It was nice to talk to Alexander Bruce, the dev. He spotted my "knutaf" periodic table nametag and was like, "oh, you're that guy from Twitter." That was neat.

Conrad is seriously distracted by something over there.

But my newest most anticipated game was definitely Quadrilateral Cowboy. Any game that lets me drop down a laptop and literally telnet into various devices to hack them gets me drooling. It's like my dream come true.

At some point during Friday there was a Geometry Wars 2 tournament. I always enter, and always have a pretty good time. This year as I was walking into the tourney room I turned to Corduroy and said, "yo, what's with all the people? I wonder what game they're here for." Turns out there were over fifty people in the GW2 tournament. WAT. I made it into the top 8, then got eliminated by a guy who was really very good. It was still a close game, though, and he was a cool guy.

All these people are here to play Geometry Wars. Am I in heaven?

I also watched Corduroy in the Trials Evo tournament. Unfortunately, they were using boring, simple tracks, so no real skill was shown off, mostly luck. Oddly, I ran into Freddie Wong, creator of one of the coolest shows I've seen recently, Video Game High School. He was just as crazy in person as he acts in his part on the show. Jeez. Apparently he's some Trials Evo hotshot? I dunno.

The dinner parties are maybe my favorite part of PAX. This year I cooked my Indian chicken again for about 15 people who came back to my place on Friday night. We played Smash Brothers and ate good food and had a great time. Again, everyone left pretty late, leaving us more and more hollow for the coming day.


Saturday is always the longest, fullest day of PAX, and this time was no exception. I saw a number of panels, none of which I can really remember, because it was such a blur. I remember spending most of the day with Bbain and Beyamor, though. We saw more indie games, wandered the expo hall, and sat in various panels.

Bey has a real knack for these kinds of shots.

I also took advantage of some free time to find out what Isay Isay was up to. Seems he was pretty busy!

Isay Isay gets a photo with Ezio or whoever.

I don't even know what this is from. I guess it looked kind of cool.

Mr. (Mrs.?) Destructoid showcases Isay Isay.

Monk totally fell asleep standing up. Come on, Monk. Wake up!

In the evening, we of course came back for another dinner party. This time, we made homemade burgers and did beer-soaked brats! God, those burgers were good. I just need to be careful about grease fires... oops. Heh heh. People played Smash Brothers and board games, then we of course moved into Rock Band later. There were some pretty stunning renditions of songs, let me tell you.

Coheed and Cambria - Welcome Home

Tenacious D

Gorillaz - Clint Eastwood

At some point we got the crazy idea to do a podcast. Well, we had like a bajillion people in the same place. Why not!? It was a short, sweet success, though we could have chosen the microphone a little better. Oh well.

Weary and dead on our feet, we slept like rocks. Some of us more than others.

Actually, Law passed out after one beer like 15 minutes into the party.

Sunday and Monday

Yet again we got up early and headed in. We seemed to always have something early in the morning. Beyamor and I went to the Spacechem tournament. I knew I was middling to bad at Spacechem, but I really didn't have that confirmed until I saw some of the incredibly elegant, beautiful solutions people came up with. Wow.

Isay Isay always wanted his very own mech.

Everyone, including Isay Isay, is pumped for Borderlands 2!

Speaking of beautiful, Bbain entered in the Beautiful Katamari tournament and made it all the way to the finals. He's good, you guys. Here's his semifinals win, followed by his unfortunate upset in the last match of the finals. His opponent really knew how to smash. His opponent was also very quick.

Bbain demolishes this guy at Beautiful Katamari

But not against this dude :(

I think we saw a few other panels on Sunday, too, but we were starting to get tired at this point. We were mostly split up during the day, and half the group headed home on a Sunday afternoon flight. That sucks! Dinner that night was a melancholy affair of leftovers. Too bad. Monk, Bbain, and I had a great time finishing off the last third of Rayman: Origins, though. It's pretty rare these days that I actually finish a game...

Isay Isay with one of the bikes from Lococyle

I honestly can't remember who left Sunday and who left Monday. Occams had to leave at the buttcrack of dawn, so that was fun. I think Monk was the last to leave, and Colton a bit before. Those last bits are always depressing. The kind of close-knit friendship in our group cannot be understated. I honestly feel like even though we live thousands of miles apart, the people in this group are every bit as good friends as many of my local ones.

I LOVE this picture.

I think every one of us suffers from some degree of post-PAX depression. Ah well, at least we have PAX 2013 to look forward to, right guys!? Oh yeah, and Borderlands 2, heh heh...
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About knutafone of us since 6:45 PM on 03.01.2010

I'm a dad in my thirties.
I work for MS on the Xbox, making features and fixing bugs.
I have a cat and two dogs.
I sometimes make Twitter bots: 1, 2, 3

Groundhog Day: Wave After Wave, This Is My Ocean
Obscurity: Nobody has ever heard of Lemmings

Currently playing
Stephen's Sausage Roll

Dark Souls
Geometry Wars 2
Burnout Paradise
Rayman (original, Origins, Legends)
Tetris Attack
Metroid Prime series
Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3
Descent 1-3
English Country Tune
The Witness

Other places you might find me:
Twitch.tv livestream (PC indie games and Dark Souls)
knutaf on YouTube
@_knutaf on Twitter
Occasionally, I am part of a podcast
I watch a fair bit of anime.
I sometimes listen to music.
Xbox LIVE:knutaf
PSN ID:knutaf
Steam ID:knutaf


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