Penny Arcade Has Officially Retired PAX South

Penny Arcade and ReedPop announced this afternoon that they have officially decided to retire PAX South. At least, for now. The company posted the statement you see below on both the event's main page as well as their social media, essentially explaining that due to the pandemic and the fact that the event hasn't really expanded since it was founded, they've made the tough call to retire it for the foreseeable future. While it is a bit of a loss to the convention scene (especially in the middle of winter having an event in a city that wasn't covered in snow or blasting you with below-freezing winds every morning), they do touch on a subject that's been a sore spot for a while. And that is the fact that the event's audience and its collective participation from exhibitors and attendees never really grew to the size of the others.

Whether or not this will affect attendance for any other PAX events is too early to tell. One would assume those who wished to go to PAX South in January might be tempted to now go to PAX East in Boston when it happens in late March/early April. But like every other convention on the planet, East comes with its own issues that some people just don't find inviting, which is why they attend South, West, and Unplugged instead. Maybe one day the event can come back, but for now, its time to tip the cowboy hat down and say "adios".

Penny Arcade Has Officially Retired PAX South
Credit: Penny Arcade

When the first PAX was held in 2004, we expected at most a hundred locals to show up. Never in our wildest dreams did we anticipate more than 3,000 passionate fans to arrive, or for our one-time event to turn into a series held in five cities around the world. While each of our other events have 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.

Faced with that reality, and compounded by the impact of COVID-19, we have made the difficult decision to bring PAX South to an end for the foreseeable future.

The heart of PAX South lives on in the incredible memories we made in our Texas community and with the international fans and Enforcers who came out to support the show. We're sorry to all our friends who were looking forward to the show's return in 2022 – we join them in that – but we hope to see you again at our other events as PAX returns. You will forever be part of our family and the legacy of PAX. We learned a great deal from you, and future shows will be better for it.

Thank you, San Antonio, for always embodying the PAX spirit by welcoming home gamers and the people who make the things we love.

– The PAX Team

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About Gavin Sheehan

Gavin is the current Games Editor for Bleeding Cool. He has been a lifelong geek who can chat with you about comics, television, video games, and even pro wrestling. He can also teach you how to play Star Trek chess, be your Mercy on Overwatch, recommend random cool music, and goes rogue in D&D. He also enjoys hundreds of other geeky things that can't be covered in a single paragraph. Follow @TheGavinSheehan on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vero, for random pictures and musings.
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