There is so much to love about PAX West: the sneak peaks, the amazing booth installations, the camaraderie, the merch. But if you're like me, the best part is the free stuff. Incentives are often the best way to lure attendees to your game, as there are hundreds of demos available and only so many hours in a day. Some swag is given away just for visiting the booth, while other require some kind of social media engagement. The best of the best require participation beyond just showing up, which may include actually winning the game you're testing, even if you've never played it before.
We covered the complete list of PAX West 2019 swag in a previous article, with a list generously provided by Swag Maps creator Megaferret777. This is a list of our personal favorite swag from PAX West 2019, some of the harder swag to get, and some of the most desired by attendees this year.
Get A Cool Token, Then Risk It In A Game Of Crucible
Destiny players know that The Drifter is a man who likes a wager, so to honor him this year at PAX, Bungie designed a challenge that rewarded an awesome prize, then took it back if you didn't bring your A-game.
Starting with a game of 6v6 control, all participants were rewarded an authentic Gambit token. The token was metal, weighty, and came on a necklace. This was an awesome piece of swag by itself, but the real prize was there for the taking to those who were willing to risk it all. After receiving a gambit token, players had the option to wager it on a game of 3v3 Gambit. Win, and take home a very nice crucible emblem. Lose, and you lose your token. We got the gambit token, but didn't risk it on the game of Gambit, because, well, we're cowards.
FFVII Remake Had Fans In A Frenzy
Every morning there was a bum rush when to doors opened to get to Square Enix's booth for a Final Fantasy VII Remake line ticket. These tickets, which look like large old-timey theater tickets, are a great memento by themselves, but the prize every convention goer seemed to be seeking was a reversible mini-poster for the game.
Admittedly, the poster is gorgeous, but there's something about Sephiroth that just works people into a frenzy. This was the first time fans were able to play the game, but almost all the conversations surrounding it were about the poster. We played the demo as well, which is the same boss fight that was shown off at E3 earlier this year. The new combat system feels fantastic, and in our longer coverage of the demo, we thought that it would make an excellent translation to the Kingdom Hearts franchise.
Teppen Duel For An Awesome Shirt
Teppen showed up to PAX West in a big way, considering that Capcom didn't have all that much to show this year. Iceborne, which releases later this week, was definitely the headline came for the Japanese studio, with sprinklings of Mega Man and Resident Evil ports on the Switch available to demo. With so little to show, Teppen took the opportunity to go big.
The booth, which was massive and centered on the show floor, drew tons of attention for the livestream stage and professional cosplayers hired to pose for pictures as Capcom's most famous characters. Anyone who jumped into the ring to battle it out with a standard deck was rewarded a pin of their choice, but only the winner got a Teppen shirt.
A Print Worthy Of A Frame
Disintegration is an upcoming competitive FPS game with an interesting RTS twist. After playing the game, attendees were rewarded with a beautiful print of the game's protagonist. The quality of the print inspired many to cycle back through the booth in order to get it signed by the game's designers. If Disintegration turns out to be as good as it looks, this may end up being a collector's item worth holding on to.
Psycho Mask For Your Next Masquerade Ball
Before the doors even opened, Gearbox employees were passing out Psycho Masks from the upcoming Borderlands 3 to every attendee. All weekend long these mask were ubiquitous at the conventions: they would be crushed in a bag and are too large for a pocket, so everyone was wearing them on top of their heads. By Monday, it was starting to look more like a psycho convention than a gaming convention even after it seemed like every person there had a mask, there were still piles of them to be found at the entrances.
Pins, Pins, And More Pins
Most booths were giving out pins to participants, a tradition at PAX West, and one that has spawned a large community of pin traders that attend the convention every year. Some of the best pins up for grabs this year include the Velkhana pin from the Monster Hunter: Iceborne booth, the Luigi's Mansion pin from Nintendo, and the Tetris 35th Annivesary pin from Red Bull.