Penny Arcade Expo, better known as PAX, is shutting down PAX South for the “foreseeable future.” The annual Texas-based gaming convention was first hosted in 2015. It even established a PAX record for the highest attendance for an inaugural year on its very first day. But the pandemic and Covid-19 global lockdowns adversely affected the event. The company announced the news earlier today.
In a heartfelt Twitter post, the PAX team shared the unfortunate news with all fans and enthusiasts. The post read, “While each of our other events has flourished, some of them drawing hundreds of thousands of attendees from around the world, PAX South hasn’t expanded and to some extent has remained the same show that it was when we opened it in 2015.” PAX South had faced cancellations on multiple occasions and this time, it appears like the teams involved thought it’s best to permanently close the Texas-based gaming convention. While sadful as the news is, the event had not “expanded,” and mainly remained a local Texas-based gaming event.
The announcement was made via Twitter
We have made the difficult decision to bring PAX South to an end for the foreseeable future. See the full statement below: pic.twitter.com/hW8J6wBzxb
— PAX (@pax) October 29, 2021
PAX was created initially in 2004 by two Penny Arcade webcomic authors Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik and was all about gaming culture comprising tabletop, arcade, and video games. Jerry and Mike came up with the idea because they wanted to visit a show exclusively for gaming. PAX’s very first show was hosted in Bellevue, Washington and its attendance rapidly grew to over 9,000 attendees in 2005. On the back of this tremendous rise and popularity, the event was extended into several arms.
More PAX events were held in different cities through PAX East, PAX Unplugged, and even over in Melbourne through PAX Australia. PAX South was an event that was held in San Antonio, Texas. The recent few years had been demanding for PAX events in general, primarily due to travel restrictions and heightened safety measures. As stated by the team on their Twitter post, PAX South remained a smaller-scale event than its counterparts. The size of the event has not seen much growth since its inauguration in 2015. The number as per the team remained stagnant.
For PAX South, the COVID-19 pandemic seems to be the final nail in the coffin. News rules and social distancing norms have made it all the more difficult for in-person events. This year E3 was broadcast on the web rather than having an in-person larger-than-life event. Nonetheless, it is disheartening to hear that we won’t be getting a PAX South anymore.