You’ll hear a lot about all the cool games, tech, and gadgets you’ll get to try out at the PAX East show floor, but you won’t hear much about is everything beyond the show floor. PAX prides itself on offering the all-encompassing gamer experience, which includes a wide variety of things to do when you’re a little tired of trekking through the mobbed expo hall or have some time to kill between panels.
Here’s all the “other stuff” I found worth checking out around the convention center this weekend.
Using consoles and titles generously lent by the lovely and amazing PAX Enforcers, the Console Freeplay area has pretty much every game for Xbox 360, Wii, and Playstation 3, including Kinect and music game peripherals. Whether you’re looking for a group to play some Call of Duty, want to play some Bayonetta on your own, or just want to listen to some people rocking out on Rock Band, the Console Freeplay area is open late into the night.
One of my favorite discoveries at PAX is the Handheld Lounge, and the giant, uber comfortable Sumo beanbag chairs that are always abundant. Here, you can kick back with a DS, PSP, or your cell-phone, whip out some knitting, or just take a load off from all the walking and sightseeing.
Out of all the freeplay areas, tabletop was the most expansive, and the busiest. Here, gamers could sample all the glorious delicacies that tabletop gaming has to offer, whether it was some D&D, Magic the Gathering, or some sort of Pokemon-type chess. While PAX has a lot to offer in the realm of videogaming, tabletop has just as strong of a presence at the con, making the tabletop freeplay area a really exciting place to visit, whether you’re a seasoned vet or have never played any sort of tabletop gaming before. And like console freeplay, tabletop is also open late into the evening.