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Penny Arcade Expo 2009

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The Penny Arcade Expo is now the largest video game event in North America. Recording over 75, 000 visitors, PAX 2009 easy over shadows E3 2009, which only had 41, 000 in attendance.


The Big Show

The Exhibition Hall, which was the main attraction and the busiest part of PAX, was doubled in size this year. Developers and publishers, big and small, were present, showing off their wares.


Some games made their debut at the show, including Nintendo's Pokemon Rumble for WiiWare, where you test your twitch reflexes as you dodge attacks and fight back, eventually defeating and recruiting some Pokemon to your team.


There were many Free-to-play games, including the new Hello Kitty Online MMO and Nexon's Dungeon Fighter and Dragon Nest, one of the highest quality free-to-play game available.


Also playable were Scribblenauts, Forza Motorsports 3, No More Heroes 2, Nostalgia, New Super Mario Bros., Mario & Luigi: Bower's Inside Story, The Beatles: Rock Band, LEGO Rock Band, Tatsunoko Vs. Capcom, and Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days.


The Side Shows

Outside the exhibition hall there were panels running and the annual Omegathon, where pre-selected attendees played various video games in order to eliminate each other. The final round, which involved a secret game, was revealed to be an epic battle of Skee-ball and the two remaining Omeganauts put their childhood Chuck-E-Cheese training to use to earn $5000 and a trip to the Tokyo Game Show.


A few publishers were also hosting events just outside PAX. At a press dinner, Hudson revealed a whole slew of new games that will be coming out this year and next year, including Deca Sports 2, Deca Sports DS, Bomberman Live, and a brand new Bonk game, Bonk: Brink of Extinction. As well, they showed an entirely new series with Lost in Shadow, a puzzle platformer where you play as a shadow and manipulate objects and light sources to make a shadowy path for you to travel upon.


Big Encore

PAX 2009 proved to be an amazing event and it will only get better next year as there will be two PAX shows, one in Boston and one in Seattle.


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