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PA's Khoo Reacts To 'E For All' 2008 Date

Zonk posted about 7 years ago | from the not-so-much-with-the-truth dept.

Games 34

The last weekend in August has been the comfortable home of the Penny Arcade Expo since the event began. This year, the new 'E For All' event is planned for October, but in 2008 the IDG-run convention is scheduled for the same weekend as PAX. FiringSquad had a chat with Penny Arcade's business manager Robert Khoo, who explained why he's not worried. "If we change our dates at all, it won't be because of this- it's always a challenge to wrestle and negotiate for as much space as possible at the convention center, and since we're expecting 45-50k next year, we take what we can get. Right now we are planning for that same weekend, but if for some reason even more space opens up two weeks before, we'll take it. But I'll be honest with you- since PAX started I've seen my fair share of consumer shows come and go (take IGNLive for instance). It's super hard to run one of these things, and I'd be surprised if E For All lasts longer than this year." They're expecting a mind-boggling 45k-50k people next year.

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I guess (2, Funny)

earnest murderer (888716) | about 7 years ago | (#20654437)

IDG want to be sure they have an easy time of it.

E for All is giving up? (1)

PhoenixOne (674466) | about 7 years ago | (#20654449)

Either the people from "E for All" think they are strong enough to crush PAX (unlikely), or they just want to end it all.

Or they are too clueless to care...

50000 is mind-boggling? (2, Interesting)

Sciros (986030) | about 7 years ago | (#20654469)

Hmm... OSU's Horseshoe stadium seats over 100,000. MUSE sold out two 90,000-seat shows on one weekend at Wembley. 50,000 is awesome, and very successful, but it's not "omg my brain hurts I can't picture so many people."

Though, to put it in perspective, any info on how many people E3 2006, 2005, etc. saw show up?

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (4, Insightful)

heinousjay (683506) | about 7 years ago | (#20654559)

You're aware they're calling for 45-50 thousand people to show up to what is essentially a party thrown by a couple of geeky webcomic writers, right? I mean, sure, you can find 100,000 people willing to cheer for Ohio State (bless their black shriveled hearts) but that's a big money event. PAX was built by the community.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

Sciros (986030) | about 7 years ago | (#20654693)

Hmm nothing to say about the 3 skinny Brits, eh? :-P

P-A is hella popular; I'm not exactly surprised by the large number of attendees to their convention, especially since it's now quite well-established. I'm more interested in some comparison numbers for other cons...

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

shinma (106792) | about 7 years ago | (#20655149)

I'm fairly sure Dragon*Con, the largest sci-fi/fantasy/insert-geeky-ass-thing-here convention in the US had around 37k this year.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

Sciros (986030) | about 7 years ago | (#20655315)

Hmm.. no way it's largest. Comic Con breaks 100,000 easy. That's kinda geeky too.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

shinma (106792) | more than 6 years ago | (#20696899)

Comic Con is a completely different beast. It's really more of a trade show than a convention in the sense that PAX and Dragon*Con are.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

Chyeld (713439) | about 7 years ago | (#20655845)

While looking for comparison numbers I found this blog article [] which has breakdowns for several conventions of a fan nature (as opposed to say, the annual Florida Dental Association Convention).

Hope this helps.

Compared to Burning Man.... (2, Funny)

ivan256 (17499) | about 7 years ago | (#20659951)

What amazes me is that it's about the same number of people as attend Burning Man, but Burning Man gets about 1,000,000x more press.

Even if you get 50,000 geeks together for a party, it still isn't as "popular" as nudity.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

MuNansen (833037) | about 7 years ago | (#20654571)

Last year 1.4 billion people lived in China. I'm sorry, but your OSU, MUSE numbers are not impressive. (re: get some perspective)

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (0)

Sciros (986030) | about 7 years ago | (#20654609)

d00d and like over 6.7 billion people live on Earth right now! And, omgz0r, there are like a bazillion stars in the universe! Indeed the numbers I presented of people gathering in one place for some event are meaningless in this GRAND SCHEME of things!1

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20654617)

according to the wikipedia page, around 60,000 showed up to E3 last year. ...spike

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (4, Informative)

Chyeld (713439) | about 7 years ago | (#20654663)

2006 - 60,000
2005 - 70,000
2004 - 65,000

From informal google searching. So PAX is not quite E3 levels yet, but given PAX's popularity and E3's current lack thereof, they could easily swap roles in a few years.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (4, Informative)

Palshife (60519) | about 7 years ago | (#20655835)

Now compare that to PAX's numbers for the same years, keeping in mind that PAX's first year was 2004.

2004 - 3,300
2005 - 9,000 (triples in size)
2006 - 19,323 (doubles in size)
2007 - 37,000 (doubles in size)

I think the growth speaks volumes.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

Artaxs (1002024) | about 7 years ago | (#20654689)

PAX is awesome, and the 40,000 people who were at this year's event is "mind-boggling" when you consider that it started as just friends and supporters of a gaming webcomic. However, even the old E3 pales in comparison to the Games Conference at Leipzig, which saw 183,000 people this year [] .

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20655275)

The stench man...he's talking about the stench.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

GreyyGuy (91753) | about 7 years ago | (#20656041)

You know there is a difference between 100k people mostly sitting in seats watching one thing and 50k people milling around at a convention, right?

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

ZachPruckowski (918562) | about 7 years ago | (#20656181)

We're talking an expo here, not a concert or a sports game. Having worked concerts and fairs of various sizes in an organizational and production capacity, I can say that 50,000 people sitting on their asses watching sports or a band is vastly different from 50,000 people actively wandering around a venue doing dozens of different things. When you have a mobile, active crowd instead of a seated, passive crowd, then 50,000 is a whole heck of a lot of people.

Re:50000 is mind-boggling? (1)

Sciros (986030) | about 7 years ago | (#20659059)

Having been a correspondent at E3 (and an OSU graduate, haha), I know exactly what you mean with the comparison. My comment was merely that "mind-boggling" isn't really the term that comes to mind with even a number like 50,000. "Impressive," sure. :-)

meh. (4, Interesting)

bitterfun (413118) | about 7 years ago | (#20654767)

I saw them whorin' around outside PAX. It was pretty pathetic. For the price and the content, PAX will win hands down. There is also a better feel at PAX than you get at most conventions. The security are run by people that enjoy the crowd and the content. You still get some of the Exhibitor snobbiness from some of the bigger names, companies like CDV, Naughty Dog, and Mythic(believe it or not) took the time to chat with the con-people and got excited with them for the games that came out.

Goes to show they don't really give a crap (4, Insightful)

brunes69 (86786) | about 7 years ago | (#20655083)

Robert Khoo: It was in early June that they announced their 2008 dates, so by that time we already realized PAX 2007 was going to be insane because of the prereg ticket sales. I actually gave (IDG World Expo CEO) Mary Dolaher a ring and told her that for the past four years PAX is on the last weekend of August. She actually had no idea who we were, but I told her that it would be in everyone's best interest if she reconsidered the date given our size. She said she would call me back "next week..." and that was 4 months ago, so I don't know- maybe she lost my phone number?

How can you be running a huge gaming expo, under the banner "E for All", and not even know what PAX or Penny Arcade are? They obviously know nothing about their target audience at all.

Re:Goes to show they don't really give a crap (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | about 7 years ago | (#20655659)

Maybe the target markets aren't the same. Maybe what they mean when saying "everyone" is that it's really "lowest common denominator". That kind of person might not be a PA reader at all.

Re:Goes to show they don't really give a crap (2, Funny)

Ruds (86067) | about 7 years ago | (#20661111)

It's really "lowest common denominator". That kind of person might not be a PA reader at all.
Yeah, Penny Wang is pretty high brow...

Re:Goes to show they don't really give a crap (1)

FireIron (838223) | about 7 years ago | (#20656243)

How can you be running a huge gaming expo, under the banner "E for All", and not even know what PAX or Penny Arcade are? They obviously know nothing about their target audience at all.

Yeah! I what PAX is and who the Penny Arcade guys are...but who are these "IDG" nudniks anyhow?

Re:Goes to show they don't really give a crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20656391)

Give me a break. Penny Arcade sucks, and I am happy for anyone who doesn't know who they are. BaDOING!!1!

Nail in the Coffin (2, Insightful)

shidarin'ou (762483) | about 7 years ago | (#20655701)

This is the last nail in the coffin for E for All. With the success of PAX growing exponentially, and the amount of companies involved in E for All decreasing just as fast, it reeks of desperation to try and schedule E for All on the same weekend of Pax,

Or does it? E for All is already dead. It is basically going to be a local convention now. If you already live in LA, whats a little traffic congested drive for a day full of some free cool swag and games?

Perhaps by changing the weekend to the same weekend as PAX, they hope that all the hardcore gamers will be at PAX, leaving E for All to be for the less hardcore, the very very casual gamers. Expect a lot of second life and sims players from Southern California, and very little else.

I'm still debating checking out E for All this year. I'm in the area, so why not?

Re:Nail in the Coffin (2, Informative)

Rallion (711805) | about 7 years ago | (#20660327)

I'm still debating checking out E for All this year. I'm in the area, so why not?

Because the cheapest ticket will cost you $50?

Re:Nail in the Coffin (1)

shidarin'ou (762483) | about 7 years ago | (#20662293)


Well forget that.

Excellent insight Rallion!

Dead in 2008 (if it survives 2007). (1)

PhoenixOne (674466) | about 7 years ago | (#20664925)

Pay $50 to get some "free swag" and walk around in the world's biggest GameStop? No thanks.

I've already turned down free tickets to this event because, honestly, I don't think it is worth the LA traffic or the cost of parking (which can run you $30-$50 if the main lot is full).

I doubt many "very very casual gamers" will think its a good idea either...

PWND (1)

zombie_striptease (966467) | about 7 years ago | (#20657653)

Robert Khoo: This is where I tell you she is a liar.
You have to admit, as far as take-downs go, that was pretty smooth.

Ecstasy for All? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20665163)

No wonder so many people showed up

What in Hades is 'E for All'? (1)

Kamineko (851857) | about 7 years ago | (#20672319)

Are they giving drugs to everyone or what?
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