PAX East 2012 Schedule is up!

Conventions, Gaming


Gamers from all over will be pouring into the Boston Horbor on Easter weekend (4/6 – 4/8) for the 2012 PAX East gaming convention!

Continuing a proud tradition of bringing gaming fans face to face with the creators as well as giving them a look at what is ahead, the cool peeps over at Reed POP (the people that bring us NYCC, C2E2, PAX Prime, as well as many other trade shows) look to have really out did themselves this year.

For me personally, Friday is the day to go as the panels feature BioWare’s Mass Effect and Dragon Age, but Sunday will have a LIVE taping of G4’s X-Play show.

Tickets are still available for the event for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday individual day passes at only $35 each (weekend passes are sold out). To register be sure to click here.

Here is the full schedule as of 3/1/12 but be sure to keep an eye on this site for any update and cancellations.



Nintendo World Report Connectivity Jeopardy Live!
Arachnid TheatreFriday 10:00am – 11:00am

Have you ever wanted Jeopardy to be Nintendo/video game-focused? Then come and check out a modified Jeopardy-style round hosted by the staff of Nintendo World Report. If you’re lucky, you could even be a contestant and win prizes! Oh yes, there will be prizes. With topics testing your knowledge of everything from the release date of Ocarina of Time to the amount of games released for the Virtual Boy, it is a panel worth checking out.
Panelists include: Neal Ronaghan [Director, Nintendo World Report], Scott Thompson [Podcast Editor, Nintendo World Report], Lauren Ronaghan [Contributing Writer, Nintendo World Report]
Talkin’ ’bout My (Content) Generation
Naga TheatreFriday 10:00am – 11:00am

It’s not just Doom and Halo maps anymore. The Rock Band Network, and the many other user-generated content platforms out there, have built up a whole world of dedicated gamers producing and selling high-quality content right inside games. Not only does user-generated content keep games alive even longer, it can make rock stars out of diehard fans. And while it’s not easy being (or working with) rock stars, the crazy idea and crazy people behind the Network have changed what user-generated content can be, and not just for rhythm gaming. Join Rock Band Network authors and some Harmonix staff as they look back at over two years of content and discuss the lessons they’ve learned, the hurdles they’ve faced, and what it all means for bringing more user-generated content to even more games.
Panelists include: Rob Witko [Owner, Fairwood Studios], Carolyn VanEseltine [Associate Producer, Harmonix], Owen Douglass [Owner, Ozone Entertainment], Jeff Webster [Musician/Author, independent], Erich Sherman [Author/Podcaster, Rhythm Authors]
Story Time with Jordan Mechner (aka the PAX East Keynote!)
Main Theatre

Friday 10:30am – 11:30am
Jordan Mechner began his game making career in a college dorm room building the seminal 80s hits Prince of Persia and Karateka. He revisited Prince of Persia decades later as a AAA title and a blockbuster summer film, and this year will return to his indie roots with a remake of Karateka. In this session, Jordan will reflect on a lifetime of entertainment industry experiences, from having his dad score his first game to collaborating with Jerry Bruckheimer to the 20 years in between.
Panelists include: Jordan Mechner
Massachusetts: The Play State
Wyvern Theatre

Friday 10:30am – 11:30am
Massachusetts is getting in the game! Over the past year, dozens of stories online, in print and on the air have elevated the Commonwealth’s visibility within the game industry. Why has the state’s game industry attracted such attention? What’s going on in Massachusetts? What is the state of the state as it relates to the game industry? Come hear game industry executives, government officials and academic leaders talk about all of the above.
Panelists include: Timothy Loew [Executive Director, MassDiGI], Hiawatha Bray [Technology Reporter, Boston Globe], Robert Johnson, Ph.D. [President, Becker College], Ken Surdan [Vice President of Operations, Turbine], Aaron St. John [CEO, Hitpoint Studios], John Mahoney [Representative, 13th Worcester, Commonwealth of Massachusetts], Greg Bialecki [Secretary, Housing and Economic Development, Commonwealth of Massachusetts], Timothy Murray [Lieutenant Governor, Commonwealth of Massachusetts]
Online Gaming Communities and ‘Real Life’ Relationships
Cat TheatreFriday 10:30am – 11:30am

Are you are a member of one or more online gaming/website communities? Perhaps the friendships and relationships you’ve formed online have made their way into your everyday “real life”. You are certainly not alone. We will discuss the communities we have created and support, and how they help to form and impact real life relationships for gamers of all types. This popular panel from the past 2 years at PAX and PAX East makes a triumphant return with all new panelists.
Panelists include: Derek ‘DSmooth’ Nolan [Co-Founder / Host, 2old2play / 2old2type Radio], Faith ‘Phoenix’ Harrison [RTX Event Organizer / Frag Dolls Biz Dev, Rooster Teeth / Ubisoft], James Stevenson [Community/Marketing Lead, Insomniac Games], Jon ‘Weezul’ Long [Social Media Manager, Seagate Technology], Alexis ‘Tart’ Hebert-Ruiz [Community Manager for Xbox LIVE Arcade, Microsoft], Will ‘raczilla’ Kinsler [Community Manager, Epic Games]
Finding the Soul of your Game
Manticore TheatreFriday 10:30am – 11:30am

Look at yourself in the mirror. You look pretty different now than you did as a kid. The same is true of your games! Sure, they’re fun now and look great. But man, if you saw your games in their gawky preteen phase you might not even recognize them. Come listen to four veteran game designers talk about inspiration, sudden left turns, and serendipity… as well as sleepless nights, tough decisions, and saving throws. It’s all part of the process in finding the soul of your game.
Panelists include: Matt Boch [Project Director, Harmonix], Dan Chretien [Game Designer, Demiurge Studios], Josh Glavine [Game Designer, Demiurge Studios], Andrew Ziegler [Game Designer, ImaginEngine], Tom Lin [Creative Director, Demiurge Studios]
Selecting Save On The Games We Make
Naga TheatreFriday 11:30am – 12:30pm

Arcade cabinets, game consoles, cartridges, floppy discs, production documents and source code – These are the artifacts that make up the games we play. Learn about the challenges of preserving these artifacts from preservation panelists Gary Vincent, Raiford Guins and Joe Santulli. Hear what the industry is doing to preserve its video game heritage from Gamasutra contributor John Andersen and why the game preservation realm needs your support. Learn about the many game museums popping up around the globe from our preservationists and why they’re becoming the new hotspots for tourists. Get an exciting inside look (and perhaps even a sneak peak) at game preservation projects from our panel that wants to put a spotlight on saving the video game.
Panelists include: John Andersen [Contributing author of “Selecting Save on the Games We Make”, Gamasutra], Gary Vincent [President, American Classic Arcade Museum (ACAM)], Raiford Guins [Associate Professor of Digital Cultural Studies, Founding Curator of the William A. Higinbotham Game Studies Collection, Stony Brook University], Joe Santulli [Organizer, Classic Gaming Expo; Founder, Digital Press, Digital Press Videogames]
Penny Arcade Q&A #1
Main TheatreFriday 11:30am – 12:30pm

Two mics on stage, two mics in the crowd. Line up for your questions and Gabe and Tycho will do their best to accommodate! And God, please no “who would win in a fight” questions. If you can’t make this particular Q&A, be sure to catch the second Penny Arcade Panel Sunday at 2:00pm. Note that the theatre will not be cleared before this session as it runs immediately after the keynote address.
Panelists include: Gabe and Tycho!
Metacritic’s Standardization Problem (And How To Fix It)
Arachnid TheatreFriday 11:30am – 12:30pm

Metacritic has been criticized for a lot of things over the years, but one of its biggest problems is how it tries to standardize different scores from different outlets. An 85/100 from a site with tough grading standards is very different from an 8.5/10 from a site that gives good scores out like candy, and both scores are extremely different from a “B” grade from a site that doesn’t even use numeric scoring. Yet each of these scores becomes a simple “85” in MetaCritic’s calculus. This presentation will lay out a new system, dubbed “Percentwise,” which converts scores using a percentile rating based around how outlets actually distribute their own scores across the entire scale. Under the Percentwise system, a game is judged based on an outlet’s actual average review score, rather than what that outlet says should mean “average.” Under the Percentwise system, 50% really is the middle-of-the-road!
Panelists include: Kyle Orland [Founder, Percentwise]
Indie Game Development: A Day in the Life – Part I
Cat TheatreFriday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

An international collection of prominent indie developers come together to discuss what it’s like making it day to day in a suddenly budding corner of the gaming industry. Across three sessions a different trio of devs will speak personally on their experiences, as well as take questions from all who have interest in pursuing independent game development as a sustainable career. Whether you’re into the creative or the business side of the industry, there’s sure to be plenty of valuable advice and info to take in.
Panelists include: Alexander Bruce [Designer/Developer], James Green [Cofounder/Developer, Carbon Games], John Krajewski [Studio Head, Strange Loop Games], Erik Johnson [PR/Marketing and Development, Arcen Games]
Gamers With Jobs Presents: Gaming For Grown-ups
Manticore TheatreFriday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

Who said this was a young man’s game? The gaming industry is getting older and so are its players. How have we changed as gamers as we become parents, responsible employees, business owners and *horror* adults? Do we spend more to play less? Do we wax nostalgic for an era that never really existed? Join us as we delve into what gaming means to us in our 30s, 40s and *gasp* 50s as we stumble ever closer to the grim reaper’s dark embrace.
Panelists include: Shawn Andrich [Co-Founder, Gamers With Jobs], Ken Levine [Creative Director, Irrational Games], Jeff Green [Director of Editorial and Social Media, PopCap], Sean Sands [Co-Founder, Gamers With Jobs], Julian Murdoch [Co-Host, Gamers With Jobs], Cory Banks [Co-Host, Gamers With Jobs]
Fitocracy Presents: Gaming and Fitness – A Surprisingly Awesome Marriage
Wyvern TheatreFriday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

“Oh, he’s a gamer. He must be a fat slob who hasn’t seen his feet in years.” Do you know anyone who thinks that? Of course you do – everyone thinks that! Unfortunately, gamers often think that fitness and gaming are mutually exclusive. We’ll show you that not only can you achieve both, but people with the gamer mentality can actually be the fittest, sexiest people out there. Our panel consists of two WoW-nerds-turned-ripped, a Guinness Book of World Record gamer who deadlifts over 300 lbs, and Dance Central’s superfit representative. Come learn about the newest revolution in fitness from this Fitocracy-sponsored panel!
Panelists include: Richard Talens [Co-Founder, Fitocracy], Roger Lawson [Founder, RogLaw Fitness], Matt Siegfried [Founder,], Annette Gonzalez [Fitness Community Manager, Harmonix Music]
Doing it the right way first
Naga TheatreFriday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

So you think you have the talent and skill to be a game developer but you don’t know where to start or keep getting rejection letters? Come and talk to the people that are responsible for the gates to the studios. Learn how to prepare yourself with tips, tools and straight advice from the game industries top Recruiters and Hiring Managers.
Panelists include: Jim Rivers [Hiring Manager, Obsidian Entertainment], Lindsey McQueeney [Manager of Talent Acquisition, Big Huge Games/38 Studios LLC.], Dino McGraw [Global Staffing Manager, Foundation 9 Entertainment]
Rooster Teeth
Main TheatreFriday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Join the Rooster Teeth crew for an hour of fun, including new content, Q+A with the staff, and the most clever humor you will ever experience- so much so that everything in your life will seem dull and boring after this. We’ve been to every PAX since the dawn of time, and they probably wouldn’t keep inviting us back if we had a crappy panel, so if you know what’s good for you… be there.
Panelists include: The rooster teeth folks
Gaming and Mental Health
Merman TheatreFriday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Is gaming a threat to your mental health? What constitutes healthy use, and what do psychologists think of as obsession and even addiction? What questions do gamers have about the psychological impact of the hobby? Mark Kline, PsyD is Clinical Director of the Human Relations Service in Wellesley, MA and has responded to questions about gaming and mental health through his column at The Escapist, AskDrMark. He will discuss his work with gamers and their families and his own experiences in gaming.
Panelists include: Mark Kline, PsyD [Clinical Director, Human Relations Service, Inc]
How to Start Playing D&D
Cat TheatreFriday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

Let’s face it, all those rulebooks and funny-shaped dice can be intimidating. What do I roll to kill the goblin with my sword? What does Magic Missile do again? Why is that gazebo attacking me? The truth is that all tabletop roleplaying needs is a creative gamemaster and some players willing to go on an adventure. We’ll help you make sense of esoteric game manuals so you can stop just lurking on RPG websites or hearing about other gamers’ campaigns and start actually roleplaying. If you used to play D&D in the 80s or you’ve trouble with a male-centric hobby, we’ll show you how to find a group that matches your playstyle and gets you back into gaming. New dungeon masters can learn how to form a group, while we’ll show all prospective players that there’s no reason to be afraid of rolling a few dice on a Friday night.
Panelists include: Greg Tito [Games Editor, The Escapist], Ethan Gilsdorf [Author of Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks, journalist and critic for New York Times, Boston Globe,’s GeekDad], Alex Guzman [RPG Networker / Game Organizer, Bad Wrong Fun], Shelly Mazzanoble [Author of Everything I Need to Know I Learned From Dungeons and Dragons., Wizards of the Coast]
How to Run a Child’s Play Charity Event
Wyvern TheatreFriday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

Want to hold an event that will benefit Child’s Play Charity, and help out sick children all over the world? Have a cool idea, but don’t know where to start in terms of organization or promotion? Well we are here to help with that! Get together with some veterans of Child’s Play Charity Fundraisers as they give you advice on how to develop your event idea, how to get the word out, and how to ensure that everything goes as smoothly as possible!
Panelists include: Joseph Valenti [Webmaster and Head of Staff, g33kWatch], Katie Valenti [Event Coordinator, g33kWatch], Yogi Menghani [Jack of All Trades, g33kWatch], Jamie Dillion [Project Manager, Child’s Play], Kristin Lindsay [Foundation Coordinator, Child’s Play]
Design an RPG in an Hour
Merman TheatreFriday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

We’re making a pen and paper RPG, and you’re invited to the design meeting! During the panel, you’ll address the problem-solving and analytical questions required to design a successful game in a seat-of-our-pants, fast-paced environment. During the discussion, we’ll cover the basics of game theory and how to outline, centered around an example you’re participating in.
Panelists include: David A. Hill Jr. [Game Designer, Machine Age Productions]
Take Over Kotaku (For One Hour)
Manticore TheatreFriday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

Kotaku is the discerning gamer’s favorite news and opinion site about video games, but why should the people who work at Kotaku have all the fun of running Kotaku? For one wonderful hour at PAX East, anyone can be part of Kotaku. For one ridiculous hour, a room full of gamers can get their best stories, craziest photos and wildest essays on our site. If you attend, you might even be able to interview a big-name gaming person at the panel… and then get that interview on the site in the same hour! Join Stephen Totilo, editor-in-chief of Kotaku, and several of the site’s best new writers for an hour of the absurd that will result in either the greatest 60 minutes of posts in Kotaku’s history or 60 minutes of defacement that will ruin Kotaku forever. (If we’re lucky, there’s a middle ground.)
Panelists include: Stephen Totilo [Editor-in-Chief, Kotaku], Tina Amini [Editor, Kotaku], Kate Cox [Editor, Kotaku], Chris Person [Editor, Kotaku], Jason Schreier [Editor, Kotaku]
Best of the 2012 D.I.C.E. Summit
Naga TheatreFriday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

Description: Martin Rae, president, Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences, will be bringing to PAX East a speaker from the 2012 D.I.C.E. (Design, Innovate, Communicate, Entertain) Summit stage. Martin will begin with a short introduction about the history of the conference. Richard Hilleman, chief creative director, Electronic Arts, will follow with his session titled: “Games as a Language” and will share how a Hippy, a Chinese World Champion, a New Hampshire Engineer, and two Nobel Prize winners invented the modern video games business, by accident. Following is an audience Q&A with Rich.
Panelists include: Martin Rae [President, Academy of Interactive Arts and Science], Richard Hilleman [Electronic Arts, Chief Creative Director]
It’s A Trap? Transgender Issues In Gaming
Cat TheatreFriday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Whether it’s Street Fighter, Guilty Gear, Resident Evil or Final Fantasy, video games have a long history of transgender characters. You’ll find no shortage of transgender people working in the industry too. Join a panel of game designers, writers, and fans to learn about some of the most interesting characters in gaming, and the impressive lineage of transgender game makers. We’ll also discuss the impact of sex and gender in blockbuster games that let players choose their sex.
Panelists include: Charles Battersby [PC/Xbox Department Lead, Player Affinity], Chris Avellone [Creative Director, Obsidian Entertainment], Rebecca Heineman [Founding Member, Interplay], Jennell Allyn Jaquays [Lead Level Designer (World of Darkness MMO), CCP North America], Morgan McCormick [Owner, Translabyrinth], Eric L. Patterson [News Editor, EGM Media, LLC]
BioWare and Dragon Age
Manticore Theatre Friday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Join the developers and creative minds behind Dragon Age: Origins & Dragon Age II as they discuss a behind-the-scenes look at the series. They’ll also detail exciting projects outside the main game such as the comic series from Dark Horse and anime film from FUNimation as well as the latest book “Dragon Age: Asunder”. Fans attending in Dragon Age costumes will be given special recognition during the panel. For Ferelden!
Panelists include: TBA
Stuff Your Criticism, I Want A Review!
Wyvern Theatre Friday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Is there a difference between a game review and game criticism? Do you expect reviewers to talk about why a game is important in the annals of development or do you just want to know whether it’s worth your $60 or not? Should game reviewers even CARE if you’re going to purchase a title? As the video game media matures along with video games themselves, the purpose of a review isn’t as clear as it once was. Come hear what a panel of experienced reviewers and games media pundits have to say about these questions, and then let them know what *you* want out of your game reviews.
Panelists include: Dennis Scimeca [Freelance Writer, G4, The Escapist, Gamasutra], Chris Dahlen [Freelance Writer, Kill Screen (co-founder), Pitchfork, Onion AV Club], Susan Arendt [Managing Editor, The Escapist], Mitch Krpata [Video Game Critic, Boston Phoenix], Kyle Orland [Senior Gaming Editor, Ars Technica]
Educating Through Play: The Future of American Education
Arachnid Theatre Friday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

Our educational system is broken. It is based on a model that was designed for a time before the combustion engine, much less the personal computer or the Internet. Games inherently challenge us to use the skills children will need in the 21st century: Teamwork, Lateral Thinking, Systemic Problem Solving, Creativity. They’re also a solution that scales (it costs as much to build a game for 1 user as for 10,000,000) which is important in our cash starved educational system. So how do we build better games? How do we get them into schools? And if we succeed, how do we stop people from thinking that games alone can be the answer? This panel of experts will address these questions and will also be putting out an open call for suggestions from the audience to help them as they tackle these problems in their daily work.
Panelists include: James Portnow [CEO, Rainmaker Games], Leslie Redd [Director of Educational Programs, Valve Software], David Samuelson [VP of Games and Augmented Reality, Pearson]
An Uncharted 3 Story: The Chateau, Creation to Ashes
Naga Theatre Friday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

Come hear the behind the scenes story of how we created the Chateau level, from beginning concept to final implementation. Justin Richmond, Game Director, and Eric Schatz, Game Designer, will take you inside the fun and occasionally terrifying process of game design at Naughty Dog. We will give a never before seen tour of one of Uncharted 3’s set piece levels, The Chateau. From first idea all the way through to the final burning husk of the level, you will see it all in videos and screenshots. Gasp at our missteps! Laugh at our silly side ventures! Ask us questions! All this and more when you come to The Chateau, Creation to Ashes: An Uncharted Story.
Panelists include: Justin Richmond [Game Director, Naughty Dog], Eric Schatz [Game Designer, Naughty Dog], Arne Meyer [Community Strategist, Naughty Dog]
BioWare and Mass Effect
Manticore Theatre Friday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Voted the Most Anticipated Game of 2012 at the Spike TV Video Game Awards, Mass Effect 3 is finally here! Join developers for an exciting look at the evolution of the series. Bring your burning questions about Mass Effect 3! Fans wearing Mass Effect costumes will be given special recognition during the panel. Spoiler Alert, Garrus is calibrating and cannot attend.
Panelists include: TBA
So You Want to Get into the Game Industry?
Wyvern Theatre Friday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

So you want to get into the gaming industry? There are job opportunities not just in design, programming, and art – but for testers, marketing and PR, trade show coordinators, community managers, office managers, and more. Learn what skills are needed, what tasks are involved and how to apply. Hosted by some of the finest (or well, experienced) minds in the industry, they’ll give suggestions and answer whatever questions you throw at them.
Panelists include: Sue Bohle [The Bohle Group], Lincoln Davis [NCSoft], Susan Arendt [Themis Media], Chris Avellone [Creative Director, Obsidian], Dan Amrich [Social Media Manager, Activision], AJ Glasser [Inside Network]
American Classic Arcade Museum — Pinball Panel
Cat Theatre Friday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Join Mike Stulir of The American Classic Arcade Museum as he discusses pinball with the team from Retro Pinball LLC of York, PA. Retro Pinball recently released a reproduction of Gottlieb’s classic “King of Diamonds.” They will be speaking at length about why their pinball machines are unique, the process to reproduce pinball parts and the steps involved with manufacturing pinball machines.
Panelists include: Mike Stulir [Board of Directors, The American Classic Arcade Museum], Gene Goodman [Retro Pinball LLC], Mike Patz [Retro Pinball LLC], Herb Silvers [Retro Pinball LLC], Jafet Camacho [Retro Pinball LLC]
GameSpot presents Escape From Mount Stupid – Video Journalism
Arachnid Theatre Friday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

A live episode of GameSpot’s Escape From Mount Stupid series where Danny talks about starting a new video franchise on GameSpot. From breaking into the industry, to writing, presenting, editing the show and reacting to feedback. Presented in the style of the show, with audience interaction and appearances from GameSpot staff members. Q&A Follows.
Panelists include: Danny O’Dwyer [Video Journalist, GameSpot]
Video Games Aren’t Just for Playing: Gameplay as Spectator Entertainment
Naga Theatre Friday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

There’s a revolution happening in video game culture right now: gameplay and video game content are becoming immersive spectator entertainment. From major gaming leagues like MLG and ESL, to gaming media organizations like Destructoid and Joystiq, to game developers like EA, 2K and Blizzard, the video game industry has embraced gaming video like never before. There is a huge and growing audience looking for video game content, and a growing list of gaming organizations who are waking up to the opportunity. Join TwitchTV and other video game industry leaders to learn about this important development.
Panelists include: Kevin Lin [COO, TwitchTV]
Chiptunes! From the square wave to the stage
Merman Theatre Friday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

Touring chiptune artist Danimal Cannon (also of Metroid Metal) discusses the wondrous world of chiptunes! How do I get started? Just what are they doing with that Gameboy on stage? What different kinds of chiptunes are there out there? Where can I find badass music online? These answers and more shall be revealed to you. There will be something for everyone including the budding chiptune performer, tracking veterans, and especially appreciators and fans of bleeps bloops. Even if you’ve never heard a chiptune before, you’ll walk out a fanboy I promise.
Panelists include: Daniel Behrens [Danimal Cannon, Danimal Cannon]
Why Socially Enabled Games are Important to Gamers With Disabilities
Cat Theatre Friday 6:00pm – 7:00pm

We will explore the needs of the 33 million gamers with disabilities in the United States, and how they play games. We will focus on gaming that has a social component, from the true “Social Games” found on Facebook, to the power of the MMO’s on building meaningful friendships and sense of belonging.
Panelists include: Mark Barlet [President, The AbleGamers Foundation], Steve Spohn [The AbleGamers Foundation], Jill Henderson [Henderson Community Consulting], Johnny Richardson [Jack Morton Worldwide]
Ask the Dungeon Masters
Wyvern Theatre Friday 6:00pm – 7:00pm

Being a great Dungeon Master requires a variety of skills. Part referee, part storyteller, and part actor; the art of the Dungeon Master is in combining these talents to become a superhuman, D&D-propelling package. Join D&D staff members Mike Mearls, Chris Lindsay, and Chris Youngs as they discuss various tips and tricks to bring the best adventure to your players, as well as ways to make them equal participants in the story. A Q&A session will follow the panel discussion.
Panelists include: TBA
PAX Game 2012!
Manticore Theatre Friday 6:00pm – 7:00pm

Get ready to match the stars! Join a hilarious collection of writers, pundits, and comedians for PAX Game, the live version of classic TV game show Match Game. Members of the audience will be selected as contestants and challenged to predict how the panelists will answer excessively silly questions. Whoever matches the most answers wins! For a raucous evening of raunchy fun, stop by – and bring your sense of humor.
Panelists include: Susan Arendt [Managing Editor, The Escapist], Graham Stark [Loading Ready Run], Kathleen DeVere [Loading Ready Run], Bob Chipman [Escape to the Movies, The Escapist], Kyle Orland [Senior Games Editor, Ars Technica], Mike Wehner [Tecca], Dan Amrich [Activision], Russ Pitts [Features Editor, Vox Games]
Fix Your Tabletop RPG with the RPG Doctor and the Gamer Assembly
Merman Theatre Friday 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Do you have a problem with your RPG group? Looking for ways to make your games more awesome? Thinking of expanding your experiences? The RPG Doctor has played dozens of games (and designed a few), and will lead a panel with the RPG players of the Gamer Assembly, answering your questions about RPGs.
Panelists include: Brent P. Newhall [The RPG Doctor, NASA], T.W. Wombat [Gamer Assembly Steward], Brian Liberge [Gamer Assembly Steward]
Extra Credits
Naga Theatre Friday 7:00pm – 8:00pm

An interpretive dance extravaganza!!! …or maybe this will be the Extra Credits crew talking game design, development and what more we can do with games. I guess you’ll just have to show up to find out.
Panelists include: James Portnow [CEO, Rainmaker Games], Dan Floyd [Animator, Pixar], Allison Theus [Concept Artist, Vigil]
DLCs: Continuing the Story
Manticore Theatre Friday 7:30pm – 8:30pm

Downloadable content is an opportunity to continue the experience of the core game and equally important, continue the narrative. What are the challenges and the rewards? Join Obsidian’s Creative Director, Chris Avellone, as he discusses the design methodology and narrative constraints for DLC creation, citing examples from Fallout: New Vegas, and other titles in the industry.
Panelists include: Chris Avellone [Creative Director, Obsidian Entertainment]
Design a Dungeon
Cat Theatre Friday 7:30pm – 8:30pm

Create a whole adventure in an hour! Even if you’ve never DMed or played D&D, you can still participate in mass-brainstorming with your fellow gamers. We’ll take suggestions from the crowd for colorful non-player characters, terrifying monsters, as well as the big bad guy and weave them all into a complete dungeon-delving adventure. Join experienced RPG designers from Wizards of the Coast, Margaret Weis Productions, White Wolf and more as they help pick ideas for the adventure we design together.
Panelists include: Greg Tito [Games Editor, The Escapist], Mike Mearls [Head of Dungeons and Dragons Development, Wizards of the Coast], Philippe-Antoine Menard [Chatty DM, Critical Hits, Margaret Weis Productions, Wizards of the Coast], David A. Hill Jr. [Game Designer, Machine Age Productions]
Star Power in Marketing
Wyvern Theatre Friday 7:30pm – 8:30pm

As the gaming audience has widened, the instance of celebrities participating in their promotions has grown. From sponsorships to spokesmen, celebrity launch events and Twitter accounts, some celebs a natural fit, others are headscratchers. But more importantly, what does it really mean for gamers? We will discuss the role, relevance and reach of celebrities in games marketing, and what other cultural arenas gaming will soon invade.
Panelists include: Ed Davis [Account Lead, AKQA], Pete Hines [Vice President, PR and Marketing, Bethesda Softworks], Cara Scharf [President, Fearless Media]
AppNation LIVE! : The Best and Worst of Mobile Gaming
Naga Theatre Friday 8:30pm – 9:30pm

Appaholics represent! What happens when mix a couple of rabid app fiends with the gaming industries most opinionated reviewers? Chaos… and quite a few laughs. Come join us as we discuss portable gaming’s clunkers, hidden gems, and outright disastrous attempts at game making. There’s even stuff that’s not even out yet! Be sure to take part in a LIVE show of iTunes #1 App Review Podcast, the show that started at PAX, AppNation.
Panelists include: Seven [Host, AppNation], Aaron Morris [Host, AppNation], Mack Collins [Host, AppNation], Russ Frushtick [Senior Editor, Vox Games], Dale North [Editor-in-Chief, Destructoid], Patrick Mulhern [Co-Creator, Lorehound]
Friday Night Concerts
Main Theatre Friday 8:30pm – 2:00am

Concerts, be there, or be square. YOUR PAX EAST 2012 FRIDAY CONCERT STARTING LINEUP! Supercommuter Minibosses Metroid Metal Protomen
Panelists include: The power of Rock
From Lurker to Leader: A Frags to Riches Story
Arachnid Theatre Friday 8:30pm – 9:30pm

Online communities have become an extremely popular method of interaction for gamers, but with thousands of sites and millions of fans it is easy to feel like a single square tile in a enormous game of Tetris. While most people lurk, there are a handful of gamers who maneuver their way into leadership positions and become administrators for their favorite fan-site or even community managers for a game developer. How does this happen? How do you go from lurker to leader? Join community leaders as they have an open discussion about how they rose through the ranks, from being members of the community to leading it. Learn how you can follow in their footsteps and how community managers can engage their own fans to create the next generation of leaders.
Panelists include: Kelli Dunlap [Content and Community Manager, GrifballHub], Jeff Easterling [Administrator, Halo.Bungie.Org], Barbara Dunkelman [Community Manager, Rooster Teeth Productions]
The Takedown Tribunal: Three Indies Talk About Their Upcoming Stealth Games
Cat Theatre Friday 9:00pm – 10:00pm

Do you love lurking in shadows, stabbing guards in the back and/or stealing the stuff they’re supposed to be protecting? We do! Stealth games have a vocal and passionate following, but among developers, they’re notoriously difficult games to create. Even experienced AAA studios with hundreds of developers and multi-million dollar budgets will avoid stealth games in favor of more clear-cut genres. However, at least three small independent developers have thrown caution (and their sanity!) to the wind and set out to not only make stealth games, but rather non-traditional stealth games. So now we want to discuss the genre we love with an audience passionate, or simply curious, about these new takes on stealth. Andy Schatz’s IGF award-winning Monaco demonstrates through 4-player coop just how well a heist can go with a good plan and how much can go wrong with a bad one. Klei Entertainment’s Mark of the Ninja takes stealth action into 2D with style, flair and blood (and ninjas). Boston locals Lantana Games’ upcoming 2.5D platformer Children of Liberty takes an historical approach to stealth, detailing the story of four young spies in the events leading up to the American Revolution. Matthew Weise, MIT’s GAMBIT Game Lab’s Game Design Director and the creator/host of a podcast documenting the history of Looking Glass Studios (creators of Thief, one of the most important games in the stealth genre), will moderate.
Panelists include: Nels Anderson [Game Designer, Klei Entertainment], Andy Schatz [CEO, Pocketwatch Games], Dan Silvers [Resident Game Designer, Lantana Games], Matthew Weise [Game Design Director, Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab]
Dragon Age: Dawn of the Seeker
Manticore Theatre Friday 9:00pm – 11:30pm

In a land where battles are fought with swords and magic, a young heroine rises to glory as Templars, mages, and dragons clash. Cassandra, a brash and beautiful warrior, must stop a conspiracy that threatens the realm’s most powerful religious order. Accused of treasonous crimes and hunted by friend and foe, Cassandra must clear her name and overcome her rage in order to save the day and take her place in legend.” RUNTIME: Approximately 90 minutes RATING: TVMA for scenes of graphic violence and some language
Panelists include: TBA
Penny Arcade’s New Rain Slick Precipice Game
Wyvern Theatre Friday 9:00pm – 10:00pm

Jonathan Gabriel, Tycho Brahe and the Startling Developments Detective Agency are returning to the Rainslick Precipice of Darkness! Jerry Holkins and Jeff Kalles from Penny Arcade will be joined by Robert Boyd and Bill Stiernberg from Zeboyd Games to bring you behind the scenes of this fresh new installment of the continuing game series and talk about its past, present and future!”
Panelists include: Jerry Holkins [Penny Arcade], Jeff Kalles [Penny Arcade], Robert Boyd [Zeboyd Games], Bill Stiernberg [Zeboyd Games]
Naga Theatre Friday 10:00pm – 12:00am

The makers of JourneyQuest and Gamers: Dorkness Rising present a number of fan-supported web series! Watch episodes and clips from Transolar Galactica, &@, Standard Action, Aidan 5, The Collectibles, GOLD, and an exclusive sneak peak at JourneyQuest Season 2. Q & A with stars of the shows afterward.
Panelists include: Tony Becerra [Producer, Dead Gentlemen, Zombie Orpheus Entertainment], Jen Page [Actress, Dead Gentlemen, Zombie Orpheus Entertainment], Kat Ogden [Producer, Dead Gentlemen, Zombie Orpheus Entertainment], Anne Kennedy [Actor, Zombie Orpheus Entertainment], Andy Dopieralski [Publicist, Actor, Zombie Orpheus Entertainment, Rude Mechanical], Clancy Bundy [Actor, Transolar Galactica]
Going Cardboard: A Board Game Documentary
Arachnid Theatre Friday 10:00pm – 12:30am

In 1978, the German press and board game makers created the Spiel des Jahres, or “Game of the Year”, award for excellence in board game design. Competition for this award contributed to an explosion in the variety and sophistication of “Eurogames.” With the arrival of The Settlers of Catan in the United States in the mid-nineties, more people began to discover the new breed of board game that had been quietly evolving in Germany for the past 30+ years. Going Cardboard takes you into the world of “designer” board gaming, from the community of enthusiastic fans to the publishers and self-publishers, and of course, the designers.
Panelists include: Lorien Green [Owner, T-Cat Productions, LLC]
The Escapist Movie Night
Wyvern Theatre Friday 10:30pm – 12:30am

Meet the stars of The Escapist’s Loading Ready Run, Movie Bob, Editors and more at The Escapist’s Movie Night. You’ll see never-before-seen videos from The Escapist’s most popular web series, including Zero Punctuation and The Big Picture. Plus see favorite episodes from Unskippable, Feed Dump, Escape to the Movies, Miracle of Sound, Jimquisition and more, hosted by LoadingReadyRun and the staff of The Escapist.
Panelists include: Bob Chapman [Content Creator, The Escapist], Shamus Young [Content Creator, The Escapist], LoadingReadyRun [Content Creator, LoadingReadyRun], Susan Arendt [Managing Editor, The Escapist], Greg Tito [Editor, The Escapist], Janelle Bonanno [Biz Dev and Promotions Manager, The Escapist]
StreetPass Network: Connecting Nintendo 3DS Gamers
Naga Theatre Saturday 10:00am – 11:00am

It started with one guy’s trip to Japan. Now it’s a worldwide phenomenon! Hear the true story behind StreetPass Network, see how it’s connecting Nintendo gamers in unprecedented ways, and learn the surprising influence it’s having on Nintendo 3DS game development. (Or just come collect a bunch of StreetPass tags!)
Panelists include: Joshua Lynsen [Founder, StreetPass Network and StreetPass DC], Jordan White [Founder, StreetPass NYC], Dan O’Leary [President, n-Space], Jools Watsham [Co-Founder and Director, Renegade Kid]
How to Build an Arcade Stick
Cat Theatre Saturday 10:30am – 11:30am

Fighting games are huge right now, and good fighting game controllers are expensive! Why go out to the store and buy a hundred and fifty dollar fight stick, when you can do it yourself for less than a hundred dollars and customize it to play exactly how you like! This panel will serve as an introduction to stick making and modding and will go over the basics of what makes a joystick including buttons, case, stick and stick parts, and wiring. It will also give you all the resources you need to attempt to make or mod their own stick at home and will provide step by step instructions on how to make a stick from scratch.
Panelists include: Angelo D’Argenio [President, Disorganization XIII (Also a writer at Cheat Code Central and], Michael Keiderling [Senior Member, Disorganization XIII], Dustin Huffer [Owner, Hit Box Arcade], Shawn Huffer [Owner, Hit Box Arcade], Joel Whit Davis [CEO, Ember Games], Skip Smith [Junior Member, Disorganization XIII]
Harmonix and the Evolution of Beatmatch Gameplay
Manticore Theatre Saturday 10:30am – 11:30am

Join Harmonix developers as they discuss and dissect ten years of beatmatch gameplay creation, tracking their long and glorious tradition of designing music rhythm games like Frequency and Amplitude right up to the first public reveal of a brand new title! The panel will include gameplay examples from internal prototypes, honest discussion of our design process successes and failures, insight into how we create and test our games in development, and a synopsis of the design history of a title on public display for the very first time at the Harmonix booth. Q & A to follow.
Panelists include: Matthew Nordhaus [Project Director, Harmonix], Chris Foster [Design Director, Harmonix], Brian Chan [Senior Designer, Harmonix], Jyllian Thibodeau [User Experience Specialist, Harmonix]
Penny Arcade – Make a Strip!
Main Theatre Saturday 10:30am – 12:00pm

Ever wonder what goes into making a Penny Arcade comic? Join Gabe and Tycho in the Main Theatre and take part in creating Monday’s comic!
Panelists include: Gabe and Tycho!
The WoW Insider Show Live! Podcast
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 10:30am – 11:30am

The WoW Insider podcast comes to life as hosts Michael Sacco and Mathew McCurley, along with special guests, create a home away from Azeroth at PAX East. Join with the most popular World of Warcraft fansite for an hour of WoW news, views, laughter, and lots of WoW talk. There are more World of Warcraft fans at PAX than we can count, so come on down to talk all things WoW!
Panelists include: Mathew McCurley [Contributing Editor, WoW Insider — Joystiq], Fox Van Allen [Contributing Editor, WoW Insider — Joystiq], Mike Sacco [Senior Editor, WoW Insider — Joystiq], Alex Ziebart [Editor-in-chief, WoW Insider — Joystiq]
Radio Free Nintendo: Panel Edition Tridux
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 11:30am – 12:30pm

For the third straight year, the world’s greatest Nintendo podcast (or so we’re told) comes to PAX East for a live panel celebrating the joy and frustration of loving Nintendo! Come join us for insightful commentary, informed speculation, illuminating Q&A, and ill-informed attempts at humor as we dive ever deeper into the illogical-yet-delightful world of Nintendo.
Panelists include: Jonathan Metts [Contributing Editor, Nintendo World Report], James Jones [Senior Editor, Nintendo World Report], Jon Lindemann [Contributing Editor, Nintendo World Report], Guillaume Veillette [Associate Editor, Negative World]
Irrational Games: Making a Monster
Manticore Theatre Saturday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

What makes a good bad guy? Join the creative team for Irrational Games’ upcoming BioShock Infinite as they explore the game’s unique antagonists, enemies and villains. In this engaging discussion, you’ll see what goes into making a world class monster, from the initial sketches to combat animations and sound effects. Learn how everything from SHODAN to Big Daddies to the Songbird fit into the tradition of classic bad guys from cinema, fiction and games, and get a glimpse of what surprises may lie in wait for you in the world of Columbia.
Panelists include: Julian Murdoch, Ken Levine, Nate Wells, Shawn Robertson, Pat Balthrop
Comedy, Video Games and the Internet: A Steamy Love Triangle with CollegeHumor & Dorkly
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

What makes video game comedy so popular online?’s biggest viral video hits are based on video games–from the TV RPG series to the Mario-Princess Sex Tape–and broadcasts game-themed comedy videos & comics to millions of fellow nerds. Join us as we explore the common pitfalls and surprising tricks to making fun of video games, including important questions like “Why does the internet hate everything?” and “How to write an Excitebike joke without getting death threats from ExcitebikeLovr83.” We’ll also be screening new Dorkly videos and presenting our most embarrassing game-themed ideas that never made it out of the writers’ room.
Panelists include: Patrick Cassels [Staff Writer,], Kevin Corrigan [Staff Writer,], Brian Murphy [Editor-in-Chief,], Owen Parsons [Co-Editor and Illustrator,], Caldwell Tanner [Editorial Illustrator,]
Indie Game Development: A Day in the Life – Part II
Cat Theatre Saturday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

An international collection of prominent indie developers come together to discuss what it’s like making it day to day in a suddenly budding corner of the gaming industry. Across three sessions a different trio of devs will speak personally on their experiences, as well as take questions from all who have interest in pursuing independent game development as a sustainable career. Whether you’re into the creative or the business side of the industry, there’s sure to be plenty of valuable advice and info to take in.
Panelists include: James Silva [Lead Dishwasher, Ska Studios], Erik Johnson [PR/Marketing and Development, Arcen Games], Ichiro Lambe [President, Dejobaan Games]
The Campaign Doctors
Merman Theatre Saturday 12:30pm – 1:30pm

The Doctors are IN. Award winning RPG designers Luke Crane (Burning Wheel), Jack Graham (Eclipse Phase), and Joshua AC Newman (Shock) team up with RPG blogger Tracy Hurley ( to solve all of your campaign problems! Players, how do you get what you want out of your GM? GM’s, how do you keep all of your players happy? An RPG group is a tricky organism to care for and feed; how do we keep them alive and vibrant? Bring your questions up on stage — or tweet them to the moderator, if you’re shy. The Campaign Doctors have the answers — even if you might not like them!
Panelists include: Jack Graham [writer and game designer, freelancer], Luke Crane [publisher and game designer, The Burning Wheel], Joshua AC Newman [publisher and game designer, Glyph Press], Tracy Hurley [blogger and game designer,]
Epic Games: Past, Present and Future
Naga Theatre Saturday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Presented by the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Fans of the Gears of Wars franchise will have a chance to get personal with Epic Games Design Director, Cliff Bleszinski and President, Mike Capps. Listen as they answer 10 questions from their biggest fans on topics relating to design, inspirations and the secrets to staying around for 20 years! Following the 10 questions, Martin Rae, President, Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences, will get even more in-depth with these two on the past, present and future of this EPIC studio.
Panelists include: Cliff Bleszinski [Design Director, Epic Games], Mike Capps [President, Epic Games], Martin Rae [President, Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences]
The Future of Dungeons & Dragons
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

The next iteration of Dungeons & Dragons is on its way! Join D&D Senior Manager Mike Mearls in a Q&A about the next D&D, and how the open playtest is using fan feedback to help shape the future of the game.
Panelists include: TBA
Nerdcore Hip-Hop
Cat Theatre Saturday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

Nerds making music, and making a living off of it? See how these geeks have managed to captivate popular culture. Hear how Nerdcore Hip-Hop began from its godfather himself, MC Frontalot. Video games, movies and music combine to form Nerdcore.
Panelists include: Raheem Jarbo [Artist,], Damian Hess [Artist, Mc Frontalot], Kyle Murdock [Producer, Neosonic Productions]
GameTrailers’ Presents: Bonus Round LIVE!
Manticore Theatre Saturday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

The renowned video game discussion show featuring the biggest names in the industry goes LIVE in Boston for the first time! From debating the most important topics the industry faces, to challenging the convention of the business, Bonus Round has always been known for rallying the facts, the insight, and the future forecasts. In this live discussion, our panel tackles the most relevant industry topics and also gives you a chance to take your questions straight to Geoff Keighley and our esteemed industry insiders!
Panelists include: Geoff Keighley [Executive Producer / Host, Spike TV / GameTrailers]
Trailers: The Final Frontier
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

If you’ve bought a game, chances are you saw a trailer for it at some point. And love them or hate them, they’re one of the most important tools in the marketing of video games. From CG to gameplay to live action, we will discuss what elevates a trailer to epic status, some insight into the process of their creations, and what trends are coming in the future.
Panelists include: Edward Davis [Account Lead, AKQA], Pete Hines [Vice President, PR and Marketing, Bethesda]
Mega64 Panel Celebrating The Resurrection
Naga Theatre Saturday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

Easter weekend signifies the end of Lent. If you gave up Mega64 videos for the past 40 days, then what better way to fall off the horse than coming to their panel to see new videos and celebrate their almost-10 year anniversary?
Panelists include: The Mega64 dudes!
N00dz or GTFO! Harassment in Online Gaming
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 2:30pm – 3:30pm

Warning: NSFW! Let’s be honest for a minute; harassment from gamers is woefully common, often creepy, generally stupid, and sometimes so absurd that it’s funny in a morbid oh-god-is-this-what-humanity-has-come-to sort of way. Maybe it’s because they sent you a message about their assuredly impressive “dingaling” or your “big gonglerz.” Maybe it’s the fact that most of the message looks like it was typed with a foot. Maybe it’s that you only got the message after that sweet headshot. Join us as we take a look at harassment in gaming and the reactions to it, and feel free to join the discussion on how best to approach the problem.
Panelists include: Elisa Melendez [Ph.D student of Sociology, Rock Star, FIU], Jenny Haniver [, Founder], Morgan Romine [eSports Maven and PhD Candidate, Red5 Studios and UC Irvine], Grace (gtz) [, Co-founder]
American Classic Arcade Museum — Video Arcade Panel
Cat Theatre Saturday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Join Mike Stulir of The American Classic Arcade Museum as he discusses the development of arcade games with legends in the video arcade industry.
Panelists include: Mike Stulir [Board of Directors, The American Classic Arcade Museum], Steve Golson [Co-creator of Ms. Pac-Man], Eric Pribyl [Programmer of Cruisin’ USA/World/Exotica], Jonathan Hurd [Programmer of Food Fight]
Healthy Games: Lose Weight, Live Longer, and Level Up
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Are you a gamer who wants to get healthier? Or a game dev who wants to access a massive new market? This panel will highlight the work of companies that are making going to the gym as exciting as a trip to the World of Warcraft. Learn about new products, services, and communities dedicated to making fitness more fun. There are hundreds of apps and tools for gamers to use and hundreds of billions of dollars in opportunity for developers, this panel will help you learn more about both.
Panelists include: Joseph Flaherty [Sr. Manager, Strategic Marketing, AgaMatrix], Matt Boch [Lead Design/Director, Dance Central, Harmonix], Michael Sheeley [COO/Founder, RunKeeper], Nina Walia [Experience Producer, Nike Fuel Band, Nike], Alex Gourley [CEO/Founder, Bit Gym]
Joystiq Show Live
Manticore Theatre Saturday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Joystiq staff present its popular podcast The Joystiq Show Live for all to enjoy. Segments include “With a Q?” and the chance to stump JC Fletcher in “Ask JC.”
Panelists include: Alexander Sliwinski [News Editor, Joystiq], Richard Mitchell [Reviews Editor, Joystiq], Dave Hinkle [Associate Editor, Joystiq]
Legal Issues in the Game Industry
Merman Theatre Saturday 3:30pm – 4:30pm

The game industry has been affected by legal issues since the beginning. People were fighting over who owned Pong in the 1970’s. In the last year, we have had SOPA/PIPA, the worst privacy breaches ever, copycat cases, and Schwarzenegger defeated in the Supreme Court. This panel gathers some of the best known game industry attorneys to discuss these issues and more.
Panelists include: S Gregory Boyd [Attorney, Davis and Gilbert], Seth Krauss [EVP and General Counsel, Take-Two], Wade Callender [EVP and General Counsel, Gearbox], GC To Be Named [General Counsel, Similar to T2]
Pitch Your Game Idea!
Naga Theatre Saturday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

You’ve got 45 seconds to deliver your idea to our panel of experts. The top three pitches will be picked for prizes and swag! (Please note that this is an open forum – there’s nothing keeping anyone, judges and attendees alike, from stealing your ideas! If you’re not comfortable with this, please don’t pitch your idea!)
Panelists include: Jeff Kalles [Penny Arcade], Gordan Bellamy [Executive Director, IGDA], Greg ‘Porkfry’ Hjertager [Microsoft]
The Runaway Guys’ Thrown Controllers
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

Let’s Players Chuggaaconroy, NintendoCapriSun and Proton Jon (The Runaway Guys) invite you to try your luck at “Thrown Controllers”, a panel similar to the show Nick Arcade where two teams go head to head and answer various videogame trivia questions, play various videogame challenges and even go head to head against the audience. Don’t forget the all-important Brutal Challenges and Screws! Do you have what it takes to be the best?
Panelists include: Emiliano Rosales [The Game Station], Timothy Bishop [The Game Station], Jonathan Wheeler [The Game Station]
Wizards of the Coast – Magic: The Gathering Panel
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Come and talk with the Magic creative team and get insight the world of Magic. Get a preview of the new Avacyn Restored expansion and much more. You’ll see new art, new cards, and you’ll even have a chance to pick up some Magic swag!
Panelists include: TBA
Reimaging X-COM with XCOM: Enemy Unknown
Manticore Theatre Saturday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Reimagining one of the best PC games ever made is no easy feat, but the team behind XCOM: Enemy Unknown at Firaxis Games has the experience, know-how and perfect amount of fan-boy enthusiasm to bring new life to the beloved franchise. Meet the team at Firaxis Games who’s up for the challenge of re-envisioning X-COM as they discuss topics including their experience with the franchise, the inspirations behind XCOM: Enemy Unknown, what fans will see in XCOM: Enemy Unknown and what they are able to do with the game today that wasn’t possible when it came out more than 15 years ago.
Panelists include: Jake Solomon [Lead Designer], Garth DeAngelis [Lead Producer], Greg Foertsch [Lead Artist], Casey O’Toole [Programmer]
Noobz the Movie – Exclusive Quick Look and Q and A
Main Theatre Saturday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Written and directed by Blake Freeman, and co-written by Marvin Willson, noobz tells the story of four friends and their outrageous escapades as they journey across America in order to compete in and earn the Cyberbowl video game championship.
Panelists include: Jason Mewes, Zelda Williams, Matt Shively, Blake Freeman
Let’s Play Money Making Games
Cat Theatre Saturday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Games can make their money many ways, but how do these models affect, intentionally or not, the design choices of the game makers themselves? What about the players? Do you play a game differently depending on how you paid for it? Free to play, pay once, subscription, or silly hats, what do these different models mean to games at their core? Only ten rupees; hopefully you won’t have to pay the door repair charge.
Panelists include: Scott Rubin [Host, GeekNights], Brandon Rym DeCoster [Producer, GeekNights], Chie Fujioka [Designer, GeekNights]
Paint the Line TCG: Making the Game
Merman Theatre Saturday 5:00pm – 6:00pm

Have you ever wondered how crazy someone would have to be to decide to take a sport like Ping Pong and mash it together with a Card Game, and then merge it with the Cold War and Penny Arcade IP? Wonder no longer! Come feast your eyes upon the forms of Lead Designer Steve Bowler and Penny Arcade’s very own Kiko Villasenor as they try and relate to you the story of how this card game came to be. Hear! How it started! Laugh! At the crazy pitch meeting! Ask! All the questions that cover all the stuff we forgot to talk about! You’ll get to see the evolution of the cards (from Steve’s first index cards to early prototypes to Kiko’s amazing final layouts), some of the gorgeous artwork done by the artists on the game blown up real huge-like on the purdy projector thingy, how the project got started over a game design seminar and a chance meeting between old friends at a Starbucks, and there may or may not be a showing of the famous “Football” briefcase that once contained the original nuclear prototype.
Panelists include: Steve Bowler [Lead Gameplay Designer,], Kiko Villasenor [Art Director, Penny Arcade]
Community Management 2012: Game Journos Living In Captivity
Naga Theatre Saturday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

One day, you’re living the dream, reviewing games for a living… and the next, you’re living the OTHER dream, working at a publisher or developer as the official voice to and from the community. Uh, okay – how does that happen? How do you go from your message to “on message” and still keep, you know, your soul? A few of the ex-journos who are figuring that out as they go will tell you what they’ve learned so far, and how they use what they learned as editors in the service of The Man.
Panelists include: Dan Amrich [Social Media Manager, Activision], Andy Salisbury [Community Writer, WB Games], Jeff Green [Director of Editorial and Social Media, PopCap], Brett Elston [Online/Community Manager, Capcom], Gabe Graziani [Community Developer, Ubisoft]
Plot vs Play: The Duality of Modern Game Design
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

How do you tell a story to somebody who can control the way it’s told? How do you blend a game’s narrative with its mechanics without forcing prominence on one over the other? How do you seamlessly tie the two elements together? Does it even matter? Join BioShock creator Ken Levine and Mass Effect lead Casey Hudson alongside Joystiq’s Ben Gilbert and Kotaku’s Jason Schreier for a conversation about the never-ending war between narrative and gameplay — and how the two can finally make peace.
Panelists include: Ben Gilbert [Senior Reporter, Joystiq], Jason Schreier [Reporter, Kotaku], Ken Levine [Creative Director, Irrational Games], Casey Hudson [Game Director, Electronic Arts/BioWare label]
The Future of Online Games
Cat Theatre Saturday 6:00pm – 7:00pm

2011 launched several major Online games into the market. Now in 2012 brings together some of the top games and developers in the industry to discuss the next decade of online games and their growing mass market appeal.
Panelists include: William Murphy [Managing Editor,], Jon Peters [NCSoft / ArenaNet], Curt Schilling [38 Studios], Scott Hartsman [Trion], Brian Knox [En Masse Entertainment]
Major Nelson
Manticore Theatre Saturday 6:00pm – 7:00pm

It’s baaaaaaack: Join Larry Hryb, Xbox LIVE’s Major Nelson, e and lollip0p for another hour of dysfunctional audio! We’ll be recording the international sensation ‘Major Nelson’ radio LIVE in front of you the studio audience. No idea what will happen, or who may or may not show up. So drop by and be a part of Team Dysfunction.
Panelists include: Lary ‘Major Nelson’ Hyrb
The Boston Indie Showcase
Merman Theatre Saturday 6:30pm – 7:30pm

Chances are you’ve got one of those smart phone doohickeys, meaning you know what we mean when we say there are some really incredible games being developed for the platform. Many of these have begun to transcend the casual/social stigma, as games for the hardcore start to rival the experiences found on dedicated hardware. Unfortunately, while there are all sorts of indie game competitions out there, not many seem to focus specifically on the mobile platforms… and that seemed like a problem we might be able to help with. Join the creators of those games LIVE and on stage! Questions will be asked! Answers may appear!
Panelists include: Jeff Kalles [Penny Arcade], The Boston Indie Showcase winners!
How Not to Succeed as a Freelance Game Journalist
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Making a successful go at being a game journalist involves more than just good ideas and proper grammar. Join experienced editors (and former freelancers) Susan Arendt (The Escapist) and Justin McElroy (Vox Games), Kyle Orland (Ars Technica), Andrew Hayward (MacLife), AJ Glasser (Inside Network), and Rob Rath (freelance) as they discuss the common pitfalls, gaffes, and mistakes that give potential employers the wrong impression of you. Think it’s all common sense? Think again. If you’re interested in game journalism, this panel should not be missed!
Panelists include: Susan Arendt [Managing Editor, The Escapist], Justin McElroy [Managing Editor, Vox Games], Kyle Orland [Senior Games Editor, Ars Technica], AJ Glasser [Managing Editor, Inside Network], Rob Rath [Freelancer], Andrew Hayward [Editor, Mac|Life]
Raising the Next Generation of Geeks
Naga Theatre Saturday 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Should you let your toddler play Skyrim? What’s the best way to introduce your child to RPGs? How do you handle it when your kid doesn’t want to play a game because he thinks he’ll lose? What do you say if your daughter says she likes “Twilight” more than “Buffy?” These questions and many more will be discussed by writers for,, and geek parents in the audience. Come share your stories and advice for how to ensure our kids grow up to be geeks like us! Don’t have kids? Show up and find out what may be in store for you if you ever do!
Panelists include: Matt Blum [Managing Editor,], Corrina Lawson [Senior Editor,], Rebecca Angel [Core Contributor,], Doug Cornelius [Contributor,], Curtis Silver [Core Contributor,], Nicole Wakelin [Core Contributor,]
Road to the Independent Games Festival
Cat Theatre Saturday 7:30pm – 8:30pm

Making a successful indie game is goddamn hard! Indie success requires more than just luck, and more than just “talent.” In this panel, a group of finalists from this year’s Independent Games Festival will share how they got their start developing games. The panelists, hailing from a wide variety of different backgrounds, will reflect on their award-nominated games (Antichamber, Johann Sebastian Joust, Ridiculous Fishing, and WAY). They’ll also offer tips and insight for aspiring indies.
Panelists include: Douglas Wilson [Lead Game Designer, Die Gute Fabrik], Rami Ismail [Business and Development, Vlambeer], Jan Willem Nijman [Game Designer, Vlambeer], Zach Gage [], Chris Bell [Designer and Producer, CoCo and Co. / thatgamecompany], Alexander Bruce [Demruth]
Transmedia, Alternate Reality Games and Storytelling–Why Players (and Creators) Should Care
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 7:30pm – 8:30pm

The idea of expanding a video game world beyond the confines of its platform has been explored with various degrees of success (e.g., “The Potato ARG” for Portal 2, “Assassin’s Creed: Lineage”). Done correctly, a transmedia approach can enrich the game experience for players and create considerable good will between game creators and the player community. However, a flawed campaign can end up alienating the player base or even hurt the property by generating negative reactions from those players. We will look at some past attempts to expand game worlds, talk about what worked and what didn’t, and ponder the future of this kind of storytelling.
Panelists include: Marie Lamb [Founding Partner, Dog Tale Media, LLC], Geoffrey Long [Lead Narrative Producer, Microsoft Studios], Jan Libby [Storyworld Creator/Experience Designer, Vodville]
Retrogame Roadshow: Are Your Old Games Actually Buried Treasure?
Naga Theatre Saturday 8:30pm – 9:30pm

Television shows like “Pawn Stars” and “Antiques Roadshow” have captured the imagination of Americans who would love to find a priceless collectible at a yard sale. There’s just one thing missing – classic videogames. No longer. Bring the rarities from your collection, and you’ll have a chance to come up on stage and have your games appraised and evaluated by our handpicked panel of experts. Along the way, the whole audience will learn some fascinating tidbits about gaming history!
Panelists include: Chris Kohler [Editor, Games, Wired], Mike Mika [Director, Other Ocean], Frank Cifaldi [Writer, Freelance], Steve Lin [VP Operations, Gree], Joe Santulli [Videogame History Museum]
Saturday night concerts!
Main Theatre Saturday 8:30pm – 1:00am

The concerts continue on the second evening of PAX East, this evening you can rock out with or Saturday night cast of characters: Video Game Orchestra Paul and Storm Jonathan Coulton MC Frontalot
Panelists include: The PAX East musical guests
Vantage Point Productions: PA The Series
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 8:30pm – 9:30pm

Come meet Vantage Point, the guys behind “Penny Arcade: The Series” and “The Kris & Scott Show”. They’ll talk about their filming experiences and showcase some exclusive behind-the-scenes footage. Ask them questions, offer them praise, shine their shoes.
Panelists include: Vantage Point Productions
Fallout: Nuka Break the series screening and Q&A
Cat Theatre Saturday 9:00pm – 11:00pm

Watch the first season of the popular videogame themed web series Fallout: Nuka Break! We’ll screen the original fan film, as well as all 6 episodes of the webseries! Afterwards, there will be a Q&A with the creators of the show!
Panelists include: Zack Finfrock [Co-Owner, Wayside Creations], Vincent Talenti [Co-Owner, Wayside Creations], Aaron Giles [Actor – Ben], Tybee Diskin [Actor – Scar], Kevin Brooks [Actor – Mayor Conners], Doug Jones [Executive Producer], Melanie Wagor [Producer], Evan Zissimopulos [Producer], Cameron Diskin [Assistant Director], Aaron Moorhead [Director of Photography], Chris Avellone [Fallout Game Designer]
Screening: Standard Action Webseries
Wyvern Theatre Saturday 9:00pm – 10:00pm

The comedy-fantasy webseries Standard Action launched a first season on the web last year that blew all expectations out of the water. With gorgeous cinematography; lovable characters; quirky, intelligent writing; and costumes and makeup to put big-budget sets to shame; this tale of misfit adventurers quickly gained a fan following and set the bar high for Canadian new media with its nearly three hours of episodic content. Come and watch selected episodes from the first season!
Panelists include: None (it’s a screening!)
Giant Bomb Easter Weekend Safe and Sane Family Funfest 2012
Manticore Theatre Saturday 9:00pm – 10:30pm

Celebrate Easter weekend with the traditional Boston tradition of a Giant Bomb PAX panel! Time Magazine, Good Morning America, and The New Yorker all agree, the Giant Bombcast “…is a thing!” You won’t want to miss it!
Panelists include: Ryan Davis [Commodore, Giant Bomb], Jeff Gerstmann [Founder, Leo, Giant Bomb], Brad Shoemaker [Vocalist (Baritone), Giant Bomb], Vinny Caravella [Italian Stallion, Giant Bomb], Patrick Klepek [WILDCARD, Giant Bomb]
An Evening with LoadingReadyRun
Naga Theatre Saturday 10:00pm – 12:00am

A PAX tradition! LoadingReadyRun (producers of Unskippable, CheckPoint, Feed Dump and Desert Bus for Hope) lead a Q&A panel featuring brand new videos. Then the evening continues with a screening and live commentary block. Come hang out!
Panelists include: The LRR crew!
Demoscene: The Art of Algorithms (film screening)
Arachnid Theatre Saturday 10:30pm – 12:30am

It’s a digital art subculture. It’s an incubator of game industry talent. It’s the birthplace of the chiptune movement. And now, it’s the subject of a film. “The Art of Algorithms” is a glimpse inside one of the oldest and most underground digital art movements: the demo scene, in which coders, musicians and artists collaborate on real-time, executable “demos” as a showcase of their technical and creative skills. From the early days as part of the 8-bit cracking scene, to today’s game developers coding demos in their spare time, this movie follows the evolution of the demo scene from the ’80s to 2012. Along the way, we’ll meet Conspiracy: a crew who burst onto the scene in the 2000s and beat the odds to become one of the most respected demo groups there is.
Panelists include: Simon Edwards ( [Musician, Kraftfeld / 3LN], Michael Woytowich ( [Coder, Capped.TV], Andy Voss ( [Coder, DC5 /]
Damage Report — How Crisis Management Defines Your Game
Naga Theatre Sunday 10:00am – 11:00am

Every week it seems we see some new public crisis in the game industry that blows up all over the internet and social media. The way companies respond to these crises build their public identity, for good or bad. Hear “war stories” from industry experts and get an inside look at game industry crisis management.
Panelists include: Rich Weil [VP of Client Services, Metaverse Mod Squad], Linda Carlson [Sr. Director of Global Community Relations, Sony Online Entertainment], Adam Mersky [Director of Communications, Turbine Entertainment], Wendy Rutherford [Director of Public Relations, Cartoon Network]
Borders, Bigotry, and Body Dumps: International Videogame Controversies
Merman Theatre Sunday 10:00am – 11:00am

As videogames become an international hobby, games are increasingly running into problems of representation and localization. FPS games like Call of Duty and Call of Juarez: The Cartel increasingly use international conflicts as their backdrop, igniting controversy in the countries they portray as well as raising questions about the portrayal of foreign people and the nature of conflict in digital space. This panel will explore the more worrisome aspects of this trend, look at how overseas game developers have responded, and discuss possible solutions the industry can use going forward. Find out why the Arab world loves Assassin’s Creed and Civilization, why Mexico banned GRAW 2, why The Red Cross thinks you’re a war criminal, and what hot new game the Hezbollah militants are playing.
Panelists include: Robert Rath [Freelance Writer, Freelance], Steve Watts [Freelance Writer, Freelance], James Portnow [CEO, Rainmaker Games], Elisa Melendez [Ph.D student of Sociology, Rock Star, FIU]
GuildLaunch Presents: How to Make Gaming Sites That Don’t Suck
Arachnid Theatre Sunday 10:00am – 11:00am

Starting a video game site is easy right? Everybody loves a good animated GIF, a picture of your cat, and some Comic Sans font! Learn the do’s and don’ts behind building a video game site from those behind the scenes and in the industry. Get the answers on how to build traffic, establish a community, launch a podcast, and forge relationships with developers. It’s like having a support group for that Geocities page you’ve been meaning to launch again.
Panelists include: Seven DeBord [Creator, Guild Wars Insider, Wildstar News, AppNation Podcast], Pete Trerice [Creator, Darth Hater], Eliot Lefebvre [Senior Contributing Editor, Massively], Justin McElroy [Managing Editor, Vox Games], Martin Kerstein [Community Team Lead, ArenaNet]
The Inner-Demons and the Tribe: Dealing with Depression as a Gamer
Cat Theatre Sunday 10:30am – 11:30am

An open, heartfelt discussion about gamers dealing with depression. Using the panelists’ personal experiences as successful people diagnosed with mental illness and depressions, we explore strategies to overcome the encroaching darkness, especially tapping into the gamer’s tribe of family members and friends.
Panelists include: Philippe-Antoine Menard [Blogger, Freeelance Writer, Game Designer, Chatty Studios]
State of the Game PAX Edition
Wyvern Theatre Sunday 10:30am – 11:30am

Competitive gaming has always been a community shunned by mainstream press but it’s still continued to grow. In 2011 we saw the biggest growth for the industry from all angles. We’re looking to get even more mainstream gaming eyes on the industry by featuring journalists, casters, players, and other industry professionals for a night of laughs and learning as we talk all things competitive gaming.
Panelists include: JP McDaniel [Caster / Host, MLG / State of the Game], Sean Plott ‘DAY[9]’ [Caster, DAY[9] TV], Dan ‘Artosis’ Stemkoski [Caster and one-half of Tastosis, GSL], Geoff ‘iNcontroL’ Robninson [Pro SC2 Player, Team Evil Geniuses], Mark ‘MarkMan’ Julio [Sponsorship Manager, FGC Community Leader and MadCatz], Kevin Lin [COO, Twitch.TV], Marcus ‘Dj WHEAT’ Graham [Caster / Representative, Twitch.TV], Brad Shoemaker [Editor,]
Dragonlance: May Dragons Fly Ever in Your Dreams
Manticore Theatre Sunday 10:30am – 11:30am

A discussion of one of the most popular shared worlds ever created.
Panelists include: Margaret Weis [President, MWP]
If I hear “Gamification” one more time I’m going to scream
Naga Theatre Sunday 11:30am – 12:30pm

Love it or hate it, if you haven’t heard the word “gamification” this past year you must be dead. Or a zombie. Heck, it was short-listed to be added as Oxford dictionary’s “Word of the Year”! So what exactly does it mean for gamers and non-gamers that business people and educators are trying to make everything a game? This panel will explore what’s good and what’s bad about gamification and what it means to gamers, non-gamers, developers and people entering the game industry.
Panelists include: Tyler Vogel [Game Designer, Muzzy Lane Software], Chris Parsons [Product Manager, Muzzy Lane Software], David Martz [VP, Muzzy lane Software], Monty Sharma [Managing Director, Mass Digital Games Institute], Bill Sabram [Game Designer, MeYouHealth], Aaron Dignan [CEO, Undercurrents], Mark Sivak [Academic Specialist, Creative Industries Program, Northeastern University]
Real RPGs: Sexuality, religion, and race in design and play
Merman Theatre Sunday 11:30am – 12:30pm

The real world is full of all kinds of people- shouldn’t your game be, too? Talk to some world-class designers and serious gamers about how to make the world you create a more realistic and cosmopolitan place. Whether you’re trying to build a D&D game that feels rich and diverse or designing a game about a tough topic, eventually you face the same questions: how do I build something realistically different than my own viewpoint? How can I tackle this controversial subject honestly and well- and make it fun in the process? Join professional ladies/brown people/bisexuals (with bonus white dude!) from a wild array of religious traditions as we discuss the games we’ve made, the games we love, and how My Little Pony may be the platonic ideal of race relations in popular media. We’ll also open it up to Q&A to help you puzzle over the religious wars between your fantasy races and the age old question: how do I play a [person of another religion/gender/race] well?
Panelists include: Elizabeth Shoemaker Sampat [Partner, Two Scooters Press], Nora Last [Another Feminist Blog], Julia Bond Ellingboe [Owner, Stone Baby Games], Meguey Baker [Owner, Night Sky Games], Vincent Baker [Owner, lumpley games], Shreyas Sampat [Partner, Two Scooters Press]
The Harmonix Podcast – LIVE!
Arachnid Theatre Sunday 11:30am – 12:30pm

The Good Time Charlies at Harmonix have been producing a regular podcast for years now, bringing you the latest in Rock Band and Dance Central news, mixed with a healthy dose of irreverent banter. For the first time ever, we’re bringing you the Harmonix Podcast LIVE at PAX East! That’s right, now you can see all the stupid hand motions Eric Pope (Harmonix Community Manager) makes when describing things! You’ll also be able to feel like you’re part of the show, sharing knowing glances with John Drake (Director of Brand Management) when Aaron Trites (HMXHenry, Manager of Community Development) talks about pogs and M*A*S*H. We’ll be bringing special guests and maybe even SOME SECRETS?
Panelists include: Eric Pope [Community Manager, Harmonix], Aaron Trites [Manager of Community Development, Harmonix], John Drake [Director of Communications and Brand Management, Harmonix], Annette Gonzalez [Community Manager, Harmonix], Nick Chester [Publicist, Harmonix]
Indie Game Development: A Day in the Life – Part III
Cat Theatre Sunday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

An international collection of prominent indie developers come together to discuss what it’s like making it day to day in a suddenly budding corner of the gaming industry. Across three sessions a different trio of devs will speak personally on their experiences, as well as take questions from all who have interest in pursuing independent game development as a sustainable career. Whether you’re into the creative or the business side of the industry, there’s sure to be plenty of valuable advice and info to take in.
Panelists include: Eitan Glinert [Founder/Creative Director, Fire Hose Games], Matt Gilgenbach [Cofounder, 24 Caret Games], Richard Perrin [Designer/Developer, Locked Door Puzzle], Erik Johnson [PR/Marketing and Development, Arcen Games]
The Genre Divide: Reassessing how we Define Videogame Genres
Wyvern Theatre Sunday 12:00pm – 1:00pm

Ever try to describe a video game genre and wonder why your answers seem to come up short? Ever think that some of the categories review sites put games in make as much sense as a star nosed mole? Well, that’s because we’ve never taken a close look at what game genres might actually mean. Today we define game genres by mechanics, camera placement and even by what platform they’re on, but in this lecture James Portnow will look at the question of if there’s something more fundamental to game genres that might lead to a more coherent understanding of them and whether that might let us better understanding of the medium as a whole.
Panelists include: James Portnow [CEO, Rainmaker Games]
X-Play: Live Show Taping
Main Theatre Sunday 12:30pm – 1:30pm

Be a part of deep cable history and join X-Play as we tape a brand new episode in front of a LIVE audience. Spanning 13 years, 3 name changes, and over 1,300 episodes X-Play has persevered as the most watched videogame show on television—and a HUGE reason is the fans. Join hosts Adam Sessler, Morgan Webb, Blair Herter, and Kristin Adams as they take questions from the audience, give away free stuff, and welcome special surprise guests (HINT: Big game developers). So come be part of the show! X-Play’s coverage of PAX East kicks off G4 Monday, April 9th at 6:30pm.
Panelists include: Morgan Webb, Adam Sessler, Blair Herter, Kristin Adams, Wade Beckett
Admit It – You Play Social Games. Let’s Talk About Them.
Naga Theatre Sunday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Social games are like the HPV of the video games industry: At least 50% of us are infected, even if we show no symptoms. Unlike that awful sexually transmitted disease, however, social games don’t cause cancer, embarrassing skin blemishes or awkward phone calls with exes. They’re actually fun — so come to this panel and learn how the best social game devs are helping the rest of the industry make better video games.
Panelists include: Brandon Barber [SVP of Marketing, Kixeye], AJ Glasser [Managing Editor, Inside Network], Arjun Sethi [Chief Product Officer, 6waves Lolapps], Braden Moulton [CBO, 5th Planet Games], Susan Arendt [Managing Editor, The Escapist]
How D&D Saved My Life — and How It Could Save Yours!
Merman Theatre Sunday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Ever wonder how to explain to your spouse/parent/loved one why you dig Dungeons & Dragons? Why it’s important to you? And what the game has given you that you can use in real life? D&D taught Ethan Gilsdorf how to emerge from his -5 Shell of Introversion and become a confident, decisive, even cocky, creative soul. If you can run a D&D campaign – a months-long series of adventures requiring infinite attention to detail, exacting execution and on-the-fly problem-solving – you can run an advertising campaign, an IT company, or a freelance life. ?In this humorous, self-deprecating and inspirational talk – punctuated by Gilsdorf’s own 1970s and 1980s-era slides and movies of maps, dungeons and character sheets and snapshots — Gilsdorf will take you on a nostalgic trip through his own love affair with D&D and his personal transformation, and show you how to feel good about all those years spent in the dungeon.
Panelists include: Ethan Gilsdorf [author, Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks, journalist/writer/critic/blogger]
Game Development Runs in the Family
Arachnid Theatre Sunday 1:00pm – 2:00pm

There is something unique about Demiurge Studios’ Senior Designer Evan Nikolich. He is a second generation game developer. Evan’s mother, Laura Nikolich, worked in games back in the early 80’s and brought the classic Spider-Man to the Atari 2600. Laura has amazing stories to tell about making games when there was only 128 bytes of RAM and an 8-bit CPU running at 1.19 MHz. Come learn about game development from a unique perspective as Evan and his Mom talk about making games, the similarities and differences in their development experiences, and how one game development pioneer inspired a new generation to go forth and make games.
Panelists include: Evan Nikolich [Senior Designer, Demiurge Studios], Laura Nikolich [Mom]
Saving Your Campaign By Game Designing
Cat Theatre Sunday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

Sometimes, you keep running into issues with your RPG sessions that no amount of GMing skill can fix. You and your players are getting frustrated, and you’re ready to toss out the campaign, the game system, or both. Before you toss the core book across the room, come listen to us talk about how you can change the rules to customize any game to the needs of your own group. Some techniques like making failing interesting, adding relationship rules to a game, or adding personality rules to otherwise flat characters can help fix your campaign before it implodes.
Panelists include: Dave Chalker [Editor-in-Chief, Critical Hits], Phil Menard [Content Manager, Critical Hits], Quinn Murphy [President, Thoughtcrime Games]
Kickstarter and the Future of Independent Games
Wyvern Theatre Sunday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

It’s an exciting time to make independent games, and an even more exciting time to support them! The rising success of game projects on Kickstarter has opened developers, designers, and studios to an entirely new way of raising funds, building communities of new players, and putting more games out into the world. As more people consider alternatives to traditional publishing models, game makers of all stripes are rethinking how games get made. Join Kickstarter’s Community Director Cindy Au as she moderates a lively discussion with Paul Levering (2 Player Productions, Double Fine Adventure), Fred Hicks (Evil Hat Productions), Matt Blum (Wired’s GeekDad), and Max Temkin (Cards Against Humanity). We’ll look into questions of ownership and creative control, the unexpected success of niche genres, and how unprecedented levels of transparency and fan engagement are literally changing the business of games.
Panelists include: Cindy Au [Community Director, Kickstarter], Fred Hicks [Game Publisher, Evil Hat Productions], Max Temkin [Writer, Game Designer, Cards Against Humanity], Matt Blum [Managing Editor, Wired GeekDad], Paul Levering and/or Asif Siddiky [Filmmaker, 2 Player Productions]
From Pixels to Props: Creating Realistic Gaming Replicas
Manticore Theatre Sunday 1:30pm – 2:30pm

Haven’t you always wanted a Battleaxe? How about your favorite space marine’s trusty Assault Rifle? Our world of gaming is filled with amazing and wondrous artifacts, from the glowing weapons of Azeroth to the rusting scrap in City 17. If you’ve ever wanted to know how to make your very own, this is the hour you’ve been waiting for. Join our panel of experienced propmakers as we guide you through some of the methods and techniques needed to bring these items off the screen and into your living room. Topics covered will include planning your project, materials selection, basic processes and tools required, as well as painting and finishing techniques. We’ll also be hosting a Q&A brainstorming session to tackle your more detailed prop questions!
Panelists include: Harrison Krix [Lead Artist, Volpin Props LLC], Zander Brandt [Freelance Industrial Designer, Z Props], Bill Doran [Replica Prop Maker, Punished Props], Matt Munson [Independent Contractor, The Replica Prop Forum], Kelly Jean [Community Manager, Volpin Props]
Penny Arcade Panel #2
Main Theatre Sunday 2:00pm – 3:00pm

Wait, who are these guys? Yes, it is time for the second Penny Arcade panel. BASK IN IT’S GLORY!
Panelists include: Gabe and Tycho!
How Young Is Too Young for Games?
Cat Theatre Sunday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

HEY GAMER PARENTS: Are you excited to tabletop with you kids? Do you wonder if an iPad game is better than TV for your children? Come join the discussion/ranting as an all-star cast of leading Kid Games Developers, Wizards, and Mad Scientists discuss parenting issues and opportunities around gaming and the development of games specifically for kids.
Panelists include: Dave Schlafman [Creative Director, CloudKid], Naomi Greenfield [Director of Marketing/ Creative Strategist, FableVision], Eric Hardman [Director of Digital Marketing, Games/Preschool, Hasbro], Traci Lawson [Game Designer, Arkadium], Scott Traylor [Chief KID, 360KID], Dave McMahon [Art Director, 360KID], Scot Osterweil [Creative Director, MIT Education Arcade], Jason Wiser [Creative Director, Yaya Play]
OC ReMix: Making Sweet, Sweet Love to Video Game Music Since 1999
Wyvern Theatre Sunday 3:00pm – 4:00pm

You don’t need the London Philharmonic Orchestra for “The Greatest Video Game Music.” OC ReMix has been doin’ it for years! 2012 is planned to the biggest year for our community EVER, so come get a heaping helping of awesome VGM with OC ReMix founder David “djpretzel” Lloyd, community manager Larry “Liontamer” Oji & OCR’s elite staff of video game music ninjas! You want live music TOO? Our OCR Live crew aims to please with some sweet live performances! Preview upcoming OC ReMix albums from soundtracks like Donkey Kong Country 3 and Final Fantasy 9! If you’re elite, you can also win FREE limited edition physical copies of our Sonic the Hedgehog album, The Sound of Speed (Sonic 1, CLASSIC)! Come rock out with us & win some swag!
Panelists include: David ‘djpretzel’ Lloyd [Founder and President, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Larry ‘Liontamer’ Oji [Community Manager and Judge, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Andrew ‘OA’ Luers [Head Submissions Evaluator and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Shariq ‘DarkeSword’ Ansari [Judge and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Deia ‘DragonAvenger’ Vengen [Judge and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Stevo ‘Level 99’ Bortz [Staff Coordinator and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Vinnie ‘Palpable’ Prabhu [Judge and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], José ‘Bronx Rican’ Felix [Media Editor and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC], Andrew ‘zircon’ Aversa [Judge and ReMixer, OverClocked ReMix, LLC]
Trading Card Games: Delivering the Digital Promise
Merman Theatre Sunday 3:30pm – 4:30pm

How do trading card games adapt to the digital environment? Forecasted to reach $2.6 billion worldwide, the worldwide trading card game business is facing several new platforms. But how well do game card mechanics translate to digital platforms? We will hear from leading trading card game developers how they are formulating a digital strategy for iOS, browser, Facebook and consoles. Confirmed panelists include senior level people from Pokémon, Playdek, 5th Planet Games and To Be Continued. Anyone interested in understanding the unique combination of complex game design and new-fangled technology will not want to miss this!
Panelists include: Joost van Dreunen [Managing Director, SuperData], Brian David-Marshall [Owner, To Be Continued], George Rothrock [Director of Product and BD, Playdek], Joey MacArthur [Senior Producer, Pokémon], Stephen Pladson [CEO, 5th Planet Games]
Taking the Long Toad: The Penny Arcade Report Discusses Long-Form Journalism
Naga Theatre Sunday 3:30pm – 4:30pm

Ben Kuchera discusses why writing fewer, longer pieces is an effective strategy in video game journalism, and shares some of the strategies and thoughts behind the recently-launched Penny Arcade Report.
Panelists include: Ben Kuchera [Senior Editor, Penny Arcade Report]
1UP Presents: Retronauts in Your Favorite Games… Are Awesome
Arachnid Theatre Sunday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

Last year, we told you why your favorite games suck. But with the world slated to end before 2012’s up, Retronauts is turning over a new leaf. A kinder leaf. A leaf that involves celebrating your favorite games, even if we actually kind of hate them. Join us in this delightful audience-participation romp of gentle words and good cheer as we celebrate the best that gaming history has to offer.
Panelists include: Jeremy Parish [Editor-in-Chief, IGN/1UP], Chris Kohler [Game | Life Editor, Wired], Kurt [Editor, Hardcore Gaming 101]
The Indie Rant: Indie Developers Gone Wild
Naga Theatre Sunday 4:00pm – 5:00pm

What happens when you gather a number of over-the-top independent developer personalities in one spot and ask what’s wrong with the current state of the industry? We’re about to find out. Watch with mouth agape as 8 highly regarded indies step on stage with nothing but a microphone and a conviction. Things will get ugly. Words will be had. Things will be said that cannot be unsaid. Get ready for the rants.
Panelists include: Alex Schwartz [Responsible for Smuggle/Snuggle Truck, Owlchemy Labs], Tim Ambrogi [Responsible for Jamestown, Final Form Games], Matt Gilgenbach [Responsible for Retro/Grade, 24 Caret Games], Eitan Glinert [Responsible for Slam Bolt Scrappers, Fire Hose Games], Jamie Gotch [Responsible for Fieldrunners, Subatomic Studios], Ichiro Lambe [Responsible for AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!!, Dejobaan Games], Andy Nealen [Responsible for Osmos, Hemisphere Games], Richard Perrin [Responsible for Kairo, Locked Door Puzzle]
The Good. The Bad, The Community Manager/PR Rep. AKA How Keeping it Real Can Go So Wrong
Wyvern Theatre Sunday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

It’s hard to be a Community or PR Manager – especially when it comes to video games, where the community can go from passionate fan to angry, cursing individual faster than your 360 can power on. This panel will discuss all the good things CM’s & PR SHOULD be doing and discuss all the other stuff that just plain needs to stop. We don’t need any more incidences like a certain sea-based marketing representative! Let’s bring back the sanity, shall we? Our panelists will reach into their bag of tricks and offer helpful tips on how to handle tough situations and we will go over the right and wrong way to get ahead in the Community Management sector of the Video Game Industry. We will also discuss some of the more grey area topics like, is it okay to ask your community to boost your metacritic score? How do you effectively handle trolls in your community? How can you get them to be active and WANT to participate? How far should you go to defend your studio/game? Is it ever okay to lie? This is also a great time to bring your toughest questions for us to answer!
Panelists include: Stephanie Bayer [Customer Engagement Lead, PopCap Games], Collin Moore [Community Manager, Zombie Studios], Emily Halpin [PR Manager, 5th Cell], Logan DeMelt [Community Manager, Signal Studios]
Strategy Games: What’s Changing. What Needs To.
Cat Theatre Sunday 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Is there more to the modern strategy game than yet another round of Civilization and Starcraft? There darn well better be. Join the hosts of the Three Moves Ahead podcast, Rob Zacny, Julian Murdoch and Troy Goodfellow, as they discuss the innovations that are changing the face of the modern strategy game. They’ll be joined by special guests representing two poles of strategy games – Chris King (Paradox), a hardcore strategy dev targeting niche PC strategy gamers, and Rob Daviau (Hasbro), a board game designer trying to reignite the masses with daring (even blasphemous) twists on old classics.
Panelists include: Rob Zacny [Columnist, PC Gamer], Julian Murdoch [Contributor, Kill Screen], Troy Goodfellow [Publisher, Flash of Steel], Rob Daviau [Game Designer, Hasbro], Chris King [Designer/Producer, Paradox Interactive]
Omegathon Final Round and Closing Ceremony
Main Theatre Sunday 5:30pm – 6:30pm

Last year we had teams face off in Ikaruga, over the years the final round has been everything from retro to unreleased. What will this round contain? Come to the main theatre to learn the final terrible* secret of PAX East 2012! *not that terrible
Panelists include: The final 4 Omeganauts. TWO SHALL WIN!

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