From after parties to VIP spaces to exhibits galore, TTG’s handiwork was hard to miss at PAX West
When it comes to gaming conventions, it doesn’t get much bigger than PAX West. Nicknamed “Woodstock for gamers,” the four-day event attracts tens of thousands of video game fans who come to play, score some swag and hang out with other gamers, streamers and cosplayers. Attendees also look forward to checking out the hottest new games and exhibits from video game developers like Blizzard, Elex, Riot Games, UbiSoft, WB Games and more.
Originally called PAX Prime, the event was renamed PAX West after Penny Arcade added events in Boston (PAX East) and San Antonio (PAX South) to accommodate an ever-growing number of fans.
The Trade Group (TTG) has been supporting the exhibiting needs of game developers and streaming services, such as Twitch, since the early days of PAX. As the PAX events have grown, so has TTG’s involvement. In fact, TTG supported more than 20 clients at PAX West 2017.
Along with exhibitor support, TTG coordinated events, experiences and a whole lot more at PAX West
According to TTG Event & Exhibitor Services Manager Miriam Wagliardo, “The gaming industry has continued to rely on The Trade Group for a wide variety of needs at gaming and esports events, and PAX is no exception. Over the years, we’ve built a solid reputation as a reliable partner, known for our ability to problem-solve, bring creative solutions to the table, and keep costs in line.”
Along with designing and building a variety of trade show exhibits for the show, TTG was called upon to conceive and execute a number of live events and experiences at PAX West. Highlights include:
Photo ops with LIFE-SIZE replicas of T-Rex, velociraptor, dragons and aliens.
Photo ops are a big hit with gamers, especially when they include “life-size” creatures or characters from their favorite games. The Trade Group facilitated the build of several custom 3-D creations to bring different games to life. Fans loved taking photos with these creatures and regularly shared them on social media (more details below).
Riot Games Cospitality VIP Lounge.
A concept originally utilized during last year’s PAX East, where we first introduced the League of Legends Riftwalk Tour, TTG designed the Cospitality Lounge as a space where cosplayers could relax, mingle, refresh makeup and repair costumes. The space included comfortable seating, dressing rooms and a designated spot to take photos.
Riot Games After Party.
Held at the Showbox SoDo in Seattle, Riot Games’ After Party was open to PAX attendees and all League of Legends fans. It was a huge draw, with people lining up for blocks to get in. According to buzz on social media and via industry bloggers, Riot Games (and TTG) didn’t disappoint. TTG conceptualized, created and coordinated the entire event with a number of activations for fans, including:
- VIP section with vintage game-themed living rooms including the Pac-Man Room, the Moon Room and the Galaxy Room. Streamers were able to live stream from the different living room style spaces.
- Full LED performance stage with LED backdrops where the world-famous Glitch Mob played.
- “Glowing” vibe, thanks to readily available UV sensitive (glowing) accessories, paints, costumes and complementary, strategically-placed black lighting.
Blizzard Entertainment After Party.
Held at Showbox at Market, Blizzard’s private event was less night club, more low-key. The catered affair offered food and beverages and also included several unique activations for guests to enjoy, including:
- Photo booth where attendees could insert themselves into scenes from Blizzard games and share on social.
- 360-Slo-mo action video reel op with custom-made weaponry from Blizzard games.
- Caricature station where artist would draw guests live.
- Themed drinks based on the World of Warcraft
UbiSoft press room and exhibit featuring most of their games.
Open to the press only, this activation was set up at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. TTG provided fabric walls and gaming stations to promote several of UbiSoft’s games. At the show, UbiSoft’s exhibit included a mini stage for live streaming and several stations to demo their games. The space also included a life-size, faux water tower and white chapel, so fans felt immersed in the middle of their favorite game.
Elex – Clash of Kings knight fights and photo ops.
In the atrium and grand entrance of PAX West, dramatic signage and a land dragon greeted fans of Clash of Kings. TTG collaborated with the Armored Combat League to stage medieval duels in front of the dragon to amuse fans during select times. Larger brawls were staged outside the venue and inside near the beer garden. Knights also mingled with fans on the show floor, where they explained medieval weaponry and armor. Fans could also take photos with the knights and the land dragon.
WB Games – 50’x50’ exhibit featuring Shadow of War game.
The WB exhibit’s design featured dramatic, transparent, fabric drop graphics and accent lighting, as well as gaming stations. TTG hired actors to dress up as characters from the game. Fans could take pictures with the characters, as well as a large, “rideable,” 3-D dragon positioned at the front of the booth.
Digital Extremes 40’x50’ exhibit featuring Warframe game.
The client wanted to feature a new game (Warframe), along with Amazing Eternals, one of its vintage games, so TTG designed a split space to highlight both. For the Warframe side, TTG created custom alien statues and game weaponry to be used for photo ops, as well as a photo kiosk and merchandise store. For the Amazing Eternals side, TTG created custom monitor boxes that looked like old, retro TVs with antennas and working channel knobs. The space also featured large, hanging fabric graphics and gaming stations.
Studio Wildcard 40’x70’ exhibit featuring Ark Survival Unleashed game.
The space included several gaming stations and a designated area for players to live stream the game on social platforms. TTG created two photo ops, a 10-foot tall “rideable” raptor and a massive, 30-foot tall T-Rex, which was a fan favorite at past shows. The T-Rex was so popular at PAX West that #PAXRex photos were trending big on Twitter.
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