Saturday, April 7, 2012

PAX East 2012 Day 2 Synopsis

Well, another day is done, and what a day it was!  Between a multitude of interviews, playthroughs, and delightful conversations, we found today more eventful than perhaps the entirety of our first trip to PAX East two years ago.  And now, while I am capable of using the Internet and my ancient laptop together, here are the quick notes for how our second PAX East day went.

First, we ventured to Naga Theater where we watched the StreetPass Network panel, complete with discussion from n-Space and Jools Watsham in regards to StreetPass in software.  Following the panel, we were able to have two insightful interviews with both the StreetPass group founders and Jools Watsham.  Of course, attempting an interview in a hallway where the Epic Games panel was being lined up was probably a bad idea, but we had fun regardless.

After the interviews, all of us decided to have a bit of lunch together, and there we got to witness firsthand one gamer's first live impressions of Mutant Mudds.  We also got to try out Renegade Kid's newest, unreleased project, Bomb Monkey, and without saying too much, it was a blast for everyone at the table (it almost had to be forced from one of our grasps).  Keep an eye out for that when it releases soon!

Actually getting onto the showfloor, we ventured to the Mega Indie Booth, where we got to try out Retro Affect's Snapshot, Gaijin Games' Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien, Locked Door Puzzle's Kairo, and Drinkbox Studios' Guacamelee!  All were good in their own right.  Snapshot felt like a Super NES game upgraded for HD resolutions, and the photo mechanics have plenty of potential.  Runner 2 feels like BIT.TRIP RUNNER but incorporates a bit more; we will see if we can play it some more tomorrow for an even more in-depth experience.  Kairo was intense mentally, and the minimalist architecture acted as a unique muted style to the harsh contrast of Antichamber, which sat beside it.  Meanwhile, Guacamelee's cooperative mode was a bit early, but despite that, the game moved smoothly and shows great promise.

At Microsoft's booth, we got to try out Dust: An Elysian Tail and Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition.  The former was fairly difficult but came with the delight of great animation and a smooth game experience; its creator confirmed that the demo was probably a bit hard for a demo though it did show a lot of the game's elements adequately.  Meanwhile, Minecraft was a bit of a complicated endeavor.  The controller does not replicate the keyboard as well as it could, but having 4-player split-screen felt like a good enough trade-off for now.  The game did crash a couple times while we were there, but what can you do with an earlier build?

We got to look around the showfloor some more, and in that final moment, we were able to try out Rock Band Blitz.  It is a different breed compared to its predecessors, and it might require a second playthrough tomorrow for me to get my impressions fully placed on it.  So far, my impressions are leaning more positive, although I need to continue to restate that it is no band simulator this time around.  Not even close.

Anyways, that summarizes our second day at PAX East 2012.  Tomorrow, we will be dropping by the showfloor one more time before we get ourselves headed back to the dark place in which we, or whatever you call your home.

Until then, have fun with fun stuff!

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