Wow. Once 10am rocked around, the expo hall of PAX Australia got busy. Real busy. The tide of bipeds was slow at first, steadily filtering between the booths like grains in a sand frame and just when you thought everyone was in, more bodies would deposit themselves around you. Negotiating the floor, an easy task just 30 minutes before, now requires a dexterity score of 18 and a roll of 10 or more on the dice.
The first photo I'm going to show from my next batch is of the Xbox One. Well, its display case anyway. I'm not entirely sure when it's going to make an appearance, but even in its incorporeal state, it still managed to attract the odd bystander. Said wandering souls would hang around for a few moments, perhaps thinking they could conjure it into being via sheer strength of will, before realising the impossibility of such a task and departing for, well, cases with something in them.
World of Tanks developer Wargaming.net is one of the larger exhibitors. As we saw earlier today, it has plonked sizeable chunks of automotive metal in the centre of the expo hall, but in case people actually want to play its caterpillar-treaded MMO, it has a bunch of PCs set up for that. Bonus points to anyone who can spot Father Christmas getting his sabot on.
For League of Legends fans — and going by the crowd here, I'm going to say there's more than a few of them — your needs are catered for. Along with the massive presentation area, showing off a live game complete with commentary, is a big screen on which to watch the action. I wanted to get closer to see exactly what was going on, but I feared for the structural integrity of my puny, underdeveloped body and the various gadgets strapped to its delicate frame.
Ubisoft has a decent bit of floor space, but this play session of Splinter Cell Blacklist definitely comes in on the intimate side of things, relative to the extravagant displays of those around it. In fact, this area is just across from LoL, so any feelings of inadequacy Ubi might have are well warranted.
Even with the smaller area, Blacklist drew a healthy crowed, both seated and standing.
Those of you worried about the somewhat empty-looking show floor — the following images should put those concerns to bed. The image on the left is taken from the stairs near the main entry, while the other two are random photos from around the expo.
Finally, I was escorted from the show floor to the media room by a pair of bounty hunters in Mandalorian armour... OK, I wasn't escorted so much as trapped behind, but hey, a guy can dream of having his own personal guard.