Conventions have had a rough time since the start of 2020, as the idea of being crammed shoulder-to-shoulder in a hall while a highly-infectious virus wreaks havoc across the world has seen many an event close its doors. For PAX South, those doors will remain shut for much longer as the Texas-based incarnation of the convention won’t be around for the “foreseeable future.”
The official PAX Twitter account uploaded a statement confirming the news, while also highlighting that the event hadn’t expanded in a meaningful way since it debuted in 2015.
“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,” the PAX organizer ReedPop explained. “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.”
Video game and pop culture events had to adapt with the times last year when the pandemic saw countries go into lockdown and large public gatherings were discouraged. Last year’s PAX was an online event that ran for several days, while this year’s PAX West returned as an in-person convention but on a much smaller scale. While some big names in the convention scene are making a cautious return in conjunction with virtual gatherings, other shows like BlizzCon are being forced to reimagine how they operate.
Next year’s BlizzCon has been canceled, as Blizzard faces ongoing lawsuits and investigations alleging widespread sexual harassment and discrimination at its company and at Activision. Blizzard says that it will refocus its energy towards “supporting our teams and progressing development of our games and experiences.”