PAX West, the popular gaming convention, will take place as a physical event in September, the event organizers announced via a press release today I probably don't need to tell you why this isn't exactly the best idea

PAX West is scheduled to take place over Labor Day weekend (of 3 to September 6) at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle Tickets go on sale this week: 230 $ for the whole four-day weekend, or $ 60 for day passes If that's all you need to know, well, here But, like any other long-standing in-person event, PAX's position over the past year has been on shaky ground

In December 2020, PAX organizers, Reedpop et Penny Arcade, were optimistic about the PAX schedule 2021. PAX East would take place in early June, PAX West early September and Pax Unplugged mid-December, all provided that the covid-19 pandemic abates, or at least reaching manageable levels This plan was sketched out as a second wave of the pandemic – boosted by vacation travel and the relaxation of social distancing regulations – involved the United States By then, about 300 000 Americans have died from covid-19

In March, PAX organizers have canceled PAX East, citing extremely reasonable health and safety concerns (For the perspective, if the plans had advanced quickly, the PAX East would have taken place three weeks ago) It was replaced by the fully digital PAX Online next month., organizers remained optimistic that a PAX West in September could still take place

This optimism, at least according to health rules, does not seem to have been in vain Personally, I can't help but think it's too early to gather by the thousands in a cramped and sweaty convention hall

To be sure, in the USA, we're booming Vaccine distribution sped up dramatically during winter and into spring These vaccinations did a tremendous job of reducing hospitalizations and deaths, especially among the most vulnerable populations And even without vaccinations, evidence suggests that our collective understanding of how covid works – and how to manage it in those who contract it – significantly reduced the death rate compared to the worst periods of the disease, although these numbers are still not quite at the levels before March 2020

But we still don't know some key variables We don't know for sure how long covid-19 vaccines last, according to the CDC (Vaccine makers seem to think that somewhere in the field of « not forever» is a safe guess) We know the vaccine is effective against some variants, but not necessarily all In particular, we don't quite know yet how that behaves in relation to the new one «delta variant” (However, a UK According to a study, Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines provide some protection)

And that doesn't mean anything about the insidious and infuriating anti-vaccine campaign that is about to screw up the hard-earned progress we've made.Recent poll suggests that one in five Americans have no plans to quit at all. get vaccinated According to data compiled by NPR, about 45% of Americans are fully vaccinated For « collective immunity» – the threshold at which enough people in a given population are vaccinated to the point where transmission is unlikely, thus stopping the disease in its tracks – we would need to hit a target between 70 and 80% of the population Experts now think it's inaccessible in the US It's no wonder that publications like Vox, Bloomberg and The Washington Post have argued that the country could face a resurgence of covid-19 this fall

” While covid-19 remains a major obstacle to the safety of gatherings at one of our lounges, we won't or we will take it virtual “, PAX organizers wrote in a tweet in December « As much as we miss, even greedy, the friendliness and magic of PAX, we will not put the participants, exhibitors or our guests at risk for the good of an event if things don't go well.”

We are open or not, and since we are, people need to stop trying to make people feel guilty for taking over their life You don't feel comfortable ? Stay indoors There is nothing wrong with having a convention as long as they require proof of vaccine

PAX, 2021

News – US – PAX West is in person this year, Nevertheless


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