PAX South: 5 Things We’re Excited For

It’s getting dangerously close, campers! PAX South is only a few short days away, and we couldn’t be more excited. GameWisp will be hosting a booth of our very own, and we’re pumped to show off the awesome new tools we’ve been working on. We’re also raffling off three, count’m, three brand new Snowball iCE mics from Blue Microphones and a handful of Steam cards, in addition to the sweet, sweet swag we’ll be handing out to guests, so if you’re going to be in the great city of San Antonio this weekend for the festivities, be sure to stop by and say hello!

Of course, there’s a lot more to PAX than the opportunity to finally bring our site to the masses; it should be a weekend packed to the brim with amazing gaming experiences, first looks, previews and demos, panels and shows. It’s going to be a three-day video game party! Here’s just a handful of things we’re looking forward to about this amazing expo.

Mindcrack Comes to the GameWisp Booth

Of course, it’s our own booth that we’re most excited for, particularly when the incredible gamers from the Mindcrack community take it over for an amazing autograph session! As the Let’s Play world has exploded over the last couple years, few, if any, have managed to build as effective a collaborative community as the folks of Mindcrack. They’ll be talking all about their special partnership during their panel on Saturday, but if you want to get an autograph you’ll have to come by the GameWisp booth the next day at 2PM. All of your favorites will be there! We’ve got Guude. We’ve got Coestar. We’ve got Aureylian. Too many to name! If you want to get up close and personal with your favorite creators, remember to stop by. We’ll certainly be there, with bells on, laughing maniacally, as we always do when merry and filled with mirth. Best weekend ever? Best weekend ever!

YouTubers Live!

One of the most interesting developments over the last few years, when it comes to YouTube celebrities, has been the innovation of live tours. Digitour, in particular, has made a name for itself organizing international circuits for celebrities from YouTube, Vine, and other social media platforms to further engage their fans and give them a unique, satisfying live experience. It’s been gratifying to see the obvious appeal of these new media stars translated into a new medium, distinct from the online space. PAX South will be fun, in part, because we get to see similar “experiments” from gaming YouTubers. We’ll be lucky enough to experience live performances from Markiplier, LordMinion777, Muyskerm, Dodger and the rest of the Friendzone, Cox n’ Crendor, and many more. These kinds of live appearances and shows will soon be an integral part of the business, and having the opportunity to, in a way, be there as it’s all beginning, to see how all of these big, successful brands play with these ideas, to see how they translate the appeal of their online presence, will be truly spectacular. Plus, you know, we get to watch all these really cool shows. Hard to complain about that.

Gearbox Is Packing Surprises

PAX and conferences like it can provide incredible opportunities for AAA developers to reach out to their fans and give them a kind of back-stage experience. At PAX South, the company taking that opportunity and running with it is Gearbox, creators of the Borderlands series. For all three days, Gearbox will be there in full force, with a dedicated community theatre, just for them, and an additional “Community Fun Zone.” Just what will be on display is a bit of a mystery; the just released new-gen versions of Borderlands 2 and the Presequel are sure to be on display and playable, but other announcements are likely, in addition to industry Q&A sessions and panels with creators and artists. Throw in a themed cosplay extravaganza, behind-the-scenes looks at Homeword and the aforementioned Borderlands, and who knows what else, and you can rest assured that we’re going to keep a close eye on these sneaky buggers the whole weekend. I can’t wait to see what surprises they have in store.

Tournaments Up the Wazoo!

eSports are exploding, with million dollar prize-pools at major tournaments and scholarship programs for players popping up at universities here and there, but even if you’re not a world-class gamer, everyone gets a kick out of a good old fashioned showdown. PAX is all about giving the every-day gamer that opportunity, with multiple open tournaments being held at any given time. We’ve got Mario Kart. We’ve got Smash. We’ve got Marvel vs. Capcom, Geometry Wars, even Powerstone. The weekend will be filled to the brim with down-to-the-wire finishes, comeback victories, and epic confrontations. We’re looking forward to being there, recording a match or two, and taking in all the highs, the lows, and everything in between. There’s nothing quite like sitting down with a big group of friends and seeing who’s skills are the sharpest, even when those friends are strangers. That’s what PAX is all about.

Exhibitors Everywhere!

PAX has itself one hell of a lineup when it comes to panels, shows, and tournaments, but I’d by lying if I said it wasn’t the exhibition hall that has me the most excited. We’re going to have a lot of fun in our booth, and I’m anxious to walk around the floor and meet all of our neighbors for the weekend. In addition to your awesome tech superstars like Intel and Alienware, the floor is going to be filled by smaller companies showing off their awesome gaming accessories or other nerd ephemera. I’m excited to get my hands, and my camera, on all sorts of new toys, and equally pumped to share those things with you. Plus, there will be no shortage of indie developers, small, passionate groups building games from the ground-up that push boundaries or try something new. It’s an exciting time for indie-gaming, and it will truly be a pleasure to see some of the new games on the horizon. I’m sure I’ll come away with some new favorites.

That’s what we’re looking forward to. What about you? Are you going to be in San Antonio this weekend and are looking forward to something we left out? Are you, instead, not able to make it, but want to be sure there’s something else we don’t miss? Let us know in the comments below! Otherwise, get ready! It’s almost time…

Originally published at Jan 21, 2015.

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