Maddy’s Adventures at PAX Aus
It’s been an exciting weekend at PAX Aus with a lot of super cool stuff to see and rad games to play. My focus over the weekend is Indie games so I rarely left the PAX Rising area but here are some of the more notable parts of PAX.
Mitchell and I kicking Alex and Justin’s butts at Push Me Pull You
For those who haven’t seen Push Me Pull You it’s a 2v2 co-op game played with 2 people on 1 controller each controlling the end of one long sausage person. The goal is to keep a ball on your side of the court for a certain amount of time to score more points than the other team. None of the team had played the game before and it was a valuable bonding experience to start of the weekend.
Games from last year
I interviewed a bunch of indie developers last year (which you can find up on Omny or Itunes) some of which have returned to PAX this year. Goat Punks was back in a new and improved form, Rogue Singularity has entered Early Access and is in the final stages of development and the developers from Phantasmal have a new co-op survival horror game Outpost. It was awesome to see how these projects have evolved and see the developers continue on to new and exciting things.
I haven’t played much VR since the original Oculus Rift so it was amazing to get the chance to play some games on newer VR platforms. Firstly there was Symphony of the Machine is a zen puzzle game based on the Vive involving changing the weather. Later I played The American Dream which is a game on the Oculus which plays with the idea of doing everything in life with a pair of guns in hand. Whilst these games were distinctly different they both showed of the experiences VR can offer. And they give you very attractive goggle marks.
Yeah, I like Overwatch a lot. Every time I saw a D.VA or a McCree walk past I might have geeked out a bit. To my estimate the Overwatch cosplays comprised about half of all cosplayers over the weekend which is awesome to see as a fan of the game. One of the best I saw was a to scale Reinhardt in in full armour, as well an amazing taken of two teams of cosplayers bopping up and down and waving to each other from opposite sides of a window.
The indie section at PAX always features a number of multiplayer party games and this year was no different. We had rematches at some returning games from last year such as Swordy, of which I remain the reigning champion. Who needs modesty when you’ve won Swordy four times in a row. We also got the chance to try a few new ones such as Blockpocalypse, which features co-operative and competitive block stacking, and Brief Battles, a competitive multiplayer underwear fighting game.
After the exhibition hall closes each day it’s a great opportunity to spend some time in the tabletop section of PAX. It’s even better when you also get a chance to sit down. Reaper Miniatures were providing free miniature painting all weekend which gave newcomers and veterans of mini painting the opportunity to sit for a while and do something creative. Everyone on the team was new to the art but it was a lot of fun regardless. I painted the most generic bard ever whilst San took a bold new direction with his tan Wizard.
Objects in Space
Most games are played with a controller or a mouse and keyboard, but not all of them. Objects in Space was something I was really excited for going into PAX this year and it definitely delivered. It features a handmade spaceship bridge with all the switches, dials and buttons you can imagine. Whilst this isn’t compulsory to play the game (the developer was adamant about it being playable with just the keyboard and mouse) it was awesome to be able to feed my love for space by sitting at the console of a spaceship. My playthrough of course ended with my ship being hit by a missile and exploding into a million pieces.
The Just Dance stage at PAX is always a fun thing to take part in. After a wonderfully silly and romantic rendition of Careless Whisper last year my friend and I were seeking to re-live the magic this year with You’re The One That I Want from Grease. Alex joined me for a while and whilst we didn’t get a whole team dance going we managed to sufficiently amaze everyone with our sick dance moves. The best part of the stage is always when groups of cosplayers get up as a group and dance to something ridiculous allowing for some wonderful and very confusing photo opportunities.
The Omegathon Finale
The Omegathon starts at 7:38:00
This years Omegathon final was a fun one. It was the final out of the PAX’s to feature a VR game as well as the first time it has been between two female Omeganauts. The face of was a best of three in the (in beta) game Cowbots and Aliens and it was one of the most intense things I have ever watched. It was incredibly close right until the end and despite not being in the main theater (we had a small but excited group in the media lounge) it was a great watch.