Win a pass to PAX 2016 in Melbourne
IF you’ve ever grinded for xp, had heart palpitations over epic loot, tanked and spanked, complained about a nerf, cared more about your toons gold than your own bank balance, quickscoped, stutter-stepped, strafed, backstabbed, group healed, double-jumped, lagged, farmed, gone afk, sniped, laned, pvped, quested, or have a deep hatred for campers and bots, then chances are, you’re a gamer.
Hello to you, kindred spirit. When I was in school, my friends and I still lived in an age where video games were the sole province of nerds, and nerds weren’t the cool kids.
Fast forward to today, and the video game industry has shot past the Hollywood box-office, and is now one of the largest entertainment industries worldwide, raking in billions upon billions of dollars per year.
Alongside this, esports (professional gamers playing competitively in front of a live audience) has grown astronomically, and was worth $612 million in 2015, with the top
ranked gamers earning up to $1 million per year.
All of this translates to gaming having become a staple form of entertainment for many households, and a hobby that is no longer contained to any particular demographic.
It may even surprise some to learn that the average age of a self-professed gamer is 37.
With this growing enthusiasm for all things gaming comes the events, conventions, and expos that celebrate them, the largest of which is PAX (Penny Arcade Expo).
First held in 2004 in Seattle, PAX has grown exponentially each successive
year, and expanded internationally to Melbourne in 2013.
This year’s event, held November 4-6 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, promises to be the largest for Australia yet, with an incredibly exciting line-up of events, concerts, and panels.
Gamer musicians Tim Shiel, 7Bit Hero, and Axis of Awesome are ready
Sock puppet theatre will offer insights into game development.
If you’re looking to kickstart your own indie game, there’s a panel dedicated to the ins and outs of crowdfunding.
And you can even find out what it takes to amass an audience for your livestreaming on Twitch.
On top of all this, there will of course be all the latest and greatest upcoming
games and hardware on display, and plenty of dedicated gaming PCs, consoles, and handhelds to play with.
And if tabletop gaming is more your thing, there’s even a variety of board games and miniatures to check out.
Finally, with virtual reality becoming such a huge thing these days, PAX have a dedicated free play area where you can try out all the latest tech.
I’m glad to see gaming becoming such a huge form of entertainment for people from all walks of life.
Long live nerdom, and until next time - ‘GG’ everyone.