Like any self-respecting Director of a Nintendo website, my first stop was Nintendo's booth. Surely it'll be a sizeable setup, with all of those Wii games from the last Media Summit, right? Let's have a look from one end of the booth.
Hold on a minute, it looks like the booth is really small, only has a bunch of DS kiosks, and there aren't any Wii games to be found. Surely this can't be the case; let's go down to the other end.
Yep, don't blink that's the entire booth. I guess I'll have to wait until E3 to play Super Mario Galaxy 2, Sin & Punishment 2, and Metroid: Other M. Don't worry, Pokemon, Picross 3D, Photo Dojo, and WarioWare D.I.Y. will more than satisfy me in the meantime. *COUGH*
Thankfully, the disappointment of the Nintendo booth meant that we had plenty of time on our hands to check out some of the community-driven aspects of the show. This is stuff that you would only see at PAX, which is a show by video game lovers, for video game lovers.
A great example is the Free Play room for the uber-rare Xbox title Steel Battalion: Line of Contact. Amazingly enough, ten owners of the game DONATED their pricey setups (the huge controllers are worth hundreds of dollars on their own) for use in this Free Play room. Check out the monstrous controller.
The game is as complicated as that controller looks. I played on the same team as Jonny and James (it was a 5-on-5 match each round), but I never saw them on the battlefield.
Our next stop was the Free Play Checkout area, which is simply brilliant: when your number is called, you give the folks at the desk your badge and sign out any game you want. There are dozens of consoles of all types set up in this massive room, and you find the one you need and go at it. We played some Boom Blox: Bash Party, but there were people playing everything from Heavy Rain to Bioshock 2. However, there was this really cool Forza Motorsport setup at each end of the room.
That's right, that's THREE monitors. To do this you need three Xbox 360s, three copies of the Forza game, and of course three monitors. Utterly ridiculous, but absolutely incredible to watch.
Probably our highlight of the evening was the retro console room. This room was exactly like the Free Play Checkout room, meaning you could give them your badge in order to sign out a retro game of your choice. Virtually every old-school console is represented here - hell, they even have a JVC X-Eye - but what caught our eye was the one and only Vectrex, which Chris Kohler discussed on RFN 173.
Vector graphics never looked sweeter. In fact, I think we all fell in love with vector graphics after playing the Vectrex, and came to like them even more after hitting the retro arcade room...but it's late and I'm tired, so that will have to wait for another video blog. Tomorrow will be another crazy, jam-packed day at PAX East 2010, so we'll see you then!