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Games, cosplayers, and a penguin in a bow tie. PAX had everything this year!

If you spent some time at PAX Prime this past weekend, odds are that you saw some pretty crazy stuff. There were some massive booths, insane crowds, lots of swag, and … me. The penguin in a bow tie. Hey, I’m Winston. How’s it going?

Contrary to popular opinion, being a penguin isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. At least, it isn’t when you’re also a gamer. The controllers don’t fit your flippers, electrical sockets aren’t all that easy to come by, and … well, it’s really cold. Basically, it’s exactly like the final panel of this recent Penny Arcade strip. I needed a change of scenery, so when I found out that Mike “Pretty Princess” Thompson was going to PAX Prime this year, I asked if I could tag along.

Mike was able to sneak me in as a member of the Escapist’s news crew (his Special Lady Friend even made me a matching bow tie so people would know that we were part of the same team, as well as a sign that I could use to communicate with everyone). As we meandered – OK, I may have waddled – around the show floor, I got to meet a lot of amazing folks and see some great new games. Mike was good enough to to grab some photos my adventures and new friends, all of which are included here.

To everyone I got to meet: Running around the show and meeting all of you was amazing, especially since everyone was so great as to pose with me. I hope I get to see you all next year at PAX Prime 2012!

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Credit where credit is due: This photo was originally taken by BioWare, and Genny Prom came up with my caption.

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The Game Bakers crew, the makers of Squids

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I had a ton of fans at Sega’s Rise of Nightmares booth, but they were a little grabby.

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Carl from Automata. The binary spells “hello.”

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Hanging out with Erin, one of the Dead Gentlemen crew.

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Dead Gentlemen Productions, just after their screening of JourneyQuest.

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Hanging out with Jennifer Hale, voice of Commander Shepard.

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Russ Pitts, Editor-in-Chief of The Escapist.

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Daniel Erickson, Writing Director of The Old Republic. He was wearing a Jedi shirt, which meant we were natural enemies.

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Mike Vaillancourt, the man who created Cthulhutech. He drew a Cthulhu portrait of me on the inside of the book we bought!

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Chilling out with one of the Colonial Marines at the Sega booth.

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I was offered a part in March 32nd, so I got to be filmed on the green screen.

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Here’s the final screenshot!

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At the GOG booth, they had grannies doling out delicious cookies. They even offered me an extra cookie for helping out with the line!

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I don’t think the TIE fighter pilot realizes how much he stuck out like a sore thumb.

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This is Mikey, the dude who runs Game Church. He’s actually one of the coolest guys you could ever hope to meet. Seriously. Oh, and he’s got some seriously cool ink on his arms.

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OK, it wasn’t actually the Master Chief himself, but this was one of the best Halo costumes I saw at the show.

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These ladies from Umbrella finally let me go, but only after they took a stuffing sample. If Nemeguin eventually shows up to terrorize Raccoon City, it’s not my fault.

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I honestly had no idea what character this was, but his costume was pretty amazing.

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At Privateer Press’s booth, they had a game called Monsterpocalypse where you control monsters battling in cities. It was an epic battle, but I eventually reigned triumphant.

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And then I met Voltron. It was epic.

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Privateer Press also had a life-sized Warjack on display. He and I are pals now.

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Jonathan Coulton? Yeah, he’s as nice as you think he’d be.

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Paul and Storm. These guys are also super nice.

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Molly Lewis, musician extraordinaire. If you don’t get the sign caption, then you need to watch this video. Right now.

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Waiting for Greg Tito’s Dungeons & Dragons panel to begin in the Raven Theater.

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I was cosplaying as Navi.

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This lovely woman was part of the Aliens: Colonial Marines crew.

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Q from Street Fighter III.

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These women were hanging around the BioWare booth, but impressed me a lot when they said they hadn’t been hired by the company. Instead, they were just super-talented fans who made their own costumes.

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I tried to tell them I wasn’t the droid they were looking for, but they wouldn’t listen.

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Sneaking around the Bioshock: Infinite booth.

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I’m gonna go out on a limb here and guess that her favorite color is red …

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These guys made their armor from pins they picked up at show booths. When I asked how long it took, they said it was about three hours worth of work.

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On Sunday, there were some extra police walking around the show floor. This officer was incredibly friendly and agreed to pose with me (I had to reassure him that I wouldn’t say anything mean on the sign, though).

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This guy was super nice, but I’m not sure who he was supposed to be. He wasn’t sure either, since someone else dressed him up! Update: Apparently he was dressed as Soul from Soul Eater.

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The ever-present Final Fantasy cosplayers. These young ladies were exceptionally nice.

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Renegade Fem Shep didn’t seem to like me very much …

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The Soldier and I are hoping to be part of the next Krossover group when some more DLC is released for Mortal Kombat.

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Arthur and The Tick! And they had a spoon with them!

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When I met this guy, all I could think of were the words of Professor Farnsworth from Futurama.

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Mulder and Scully were an unexpected find at the show.

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