PAX South 2016 & San Antonio Impressions from an Exhibiting Indie Game Dev

Last week I flew to San Antonio, Texas to exhibit Karaski at PAX South! It was an exhausting blast. Here's my experience.

Last week I flew to San Antonio, Texas to exhibit Karaski at PAX South! It was an exhausting blast. Here's my experience.

The Night Before Christmas

I flew in a day early with my friend Matt (big big BIG thanks to him for saving my sanity during the show). Because of a delay, we got to our hotel rather late and decided to take it easy, explore San Antonio a wee bit.

San Antonio at night

First stop was an obligatory Tex Mex with some Mariachi bands walking from table to table. Legit. I've never been a huge fan of the cuisine, but after a long day of journeying, it definitely hit the spot!

San Antonio TexMex Mariachi restaurant

We also got some delicious Texan beers and Ciders to ease into what would soon be a busy, busy morning...

Day 1

Karaski PAX South Booth Decor

AAAH getting ready! AAAH collect badges! AAAH press hour! Lots of scrambling and hanging things up, and realizing that my plan for decorating the booth in a 1920s decor (complete with gaudy wallpaper) simply didn't work. We rolled with it, wearing fancy suits and pocket watches, but in the end it felt a little cheap. Here is my favorite quote of the day:

Oh my gosh, I love your setup. All of this it just... it reminds me of my dead wife...

Yeeea... that was wee bit awkward. But aside from that, people really enjoyed Karaski! Even tho it took a bit of effort and pitching to get people to stop by, those who did were really hooked! Numerous folk stayed and played for good 10-20 minutes. Our flyers were, well, flying. Good sign?

Even Megaman liked Karaski at PAX South 2016

Even Megaman liked Karaski :)

Twitch Afterparty

We were relieved to hear the announcement for the showfloor finally closing and headed for some quick appetizers and mingling with other exhibitors. Soon, however, we moved to an afterparty proper at a nearby pub, sponsored by Twitch.

PAX South 2016 OMG the crowds
OMG The Crowds...

Needless to say, the event was Awesome™ and definitely one of the reasons to go to an expo! We got a chance to get to know some cool devs, press folk and publishers over complimentary drinks, of course. A shoutout to the fun and chatty hosts of Video Game Awesome as well as TinyBuild reps who made the night especially memorable. Seriously, go check their stuff out, they are really cool!

The Saturday of Hell

Lots of drinking plus busy morning do not good combination make. Still, we had stuff to do! After first day's lackluster setup we decided to make a detour to the nearest Walmart and get a big flat panel TV. It was not an easy decision with my already overstretched budget but I rationalized it was a necessary investment. I hope...

Pax South 2016 Karaski Booth

Saturday proved the most crowded of the days, and hellishly exhausting. Still, good feedback kept rolling in, and it was nice to see some of the folk whom we met the night before (equally hungover).

At the end we joined a group of Quebec devs right next to our booth, exhibiting Kona, Light Fall and Stories: The Path of Destinies. We chatted over pasta and beer, having a nice lo-key evening. I got a chance tho check out their titles next day and can highly recommend them all, especially Kona for the fans of the first-person immersive world exploration aspect of Karaski!

Light Fall, Kona and Stories

The Last Supper

Sunday definitely felt more lax with everyone already tired from the first two days. I finally got a chance to wander around the expo a bit more (thanks to Matt's excellent showmanship manning the booth in my absence), say hi to the folks I met earlier, and check out the intriguing "Emergent Narrative Via Horizontal Content" talk by James Pianka. It was encouraging to see a few press folk from before come back for a 2nd round of Karaski and interviews!

PAX South Game Church
Let the one without sin cast the first frag!

Nothing crazy happened that night; exhausted after the three days and cleanup, we retired back to to the hotel early. The morning before our flight, we grabbed some nice German breakfast (mmm, schnitzel) and climbed the Tower of the Americas to get a full view of San Antonio.

San Antonio Bird Eye View

And then, just like that, it was time to get back on the plane and fly my butt home. The PAX was, sadly, over...

Most Promising Plot Award

Shortly after PAX we got awarded the Editor Choice "Most Promising Plot" Award from Without the Sarcasm! Thanks guys, we hope to deliver on the promise on February 17! :)

PAX Award Most Promising Plot Karaski: What Goes Up
Without the Sarcasm

Big THANKS to everyone who stopped by, played, and critiqued our game! I've already implemented a bunch of tweaks from your suggestions (Controller Y-Axis Invert!) Just a reminder we are Releasing on Steam on February 17 and you can Pre-Order NOW!


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