Friday, 31 October 2014 10:59

PAXAUS 2014 Day zero


PAXAUS has just opened in Melbourne Australia with a seething mass of gamerdom pushing forward into the new venue.

This year the show-for-gamers has moved from the more rustic setting of the Melbourne Showgrounds to the heart (or at least a major artery) of the CBD, the Melbourne Exhibition Centre.  The PAXAUS show also spills into the adjoining Melbourne Convention Centre for shows and panels.

For the only PAX outside of North America there is already a slightly different vibe.  After playing a bit of a wait-and-see card last year, the success has attracted more big-name publishers to the show floor, most notably Xbox, 2K, Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment, Oculus VR and Bethesda join Ubisoft, Wargaming, Riot games with League of Legends and Nintendo with the large electronic gaming booths.

There are real military tanks on the show floor.

Of course, PAX makes a big deal about the Indie developers and has positioned them prominently using the very successful display booths from last year, expanding into traditional booths and giving these fresh faces the opportunity to shine.

In the short time the media had prior to the main crowd descending onto the floor we spoke to a few indie folks.  In particular the guys at Dead End Alley who want to use all the technology.  Running an Oculus Rift DK2, a hand built chainsaw controller and a Xbox One Kinect controller I was thrust into a zombie game where my ability to swing a tool made for cutting down trees was the difference between virtual life and death.

The freegaming areas, and tabletop arenas are back, perhaps slightly modified for space from the previous year, but as popular as ever.  There are a great deal of excited faces, a few apprehensive ones on the booth population and the whiff of an interesting potpourri in the air as PAXAUS kicks off in Melbourne. 

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Mike Bantick

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Having failed to grow up Bantick continues to pursue his childish passions for creative writing, interactive entertainment and showing-off through adulthood. In 1994 Bantick began doing radio at Melbourne’s 102.7 3RRRFM, in 1997 transferring to become a core member of the technology show Byte Into It. In 2003 he wrote briefly for the The Age newspaper’s Green Guide, providing video game reviews. In 2004 Bantick wrote the news section of PC GameZone magazine. Since 2006 Bantick has provided gaming and tech lifestyle stories for, including interviews and opinion in the RadioactivIT section.

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