PDXLAN: Spring Break Fun - Gamer Style

Spring Break is widely considered a time of excess, as many students and others plan vacations to sunny beachfront locations, and go to parties filled with wine, women, and song. As this reckless abandon takes over, responsibilities take a back seat, allowing everyone to cut loose for a week of fun. Gamers, however, don't need to head to Florida - they need look no further than their own backyards to find bliss.

So it was with PDXLAN, a celebration of all that is excess in the world of gaming. On the weekend of March 18-21 in beautiful Portland, Oregon, gamers from all around the rain-soaked Pacific Northwest were drawn by promises of tournaments - both online and off - prizes, and all the free soda they could stomach.

The man who started it all: Matt "Vector" Conwell

The story of PDXLAN begins with Matt "Vector" Conwell and a marketing class. Vector was an MBA student at George Fox University when he was assigned a project to create a business. Rather than follow the lead of his fellow classmates to dabble in conventional business ventures, Vector opted instead to create a business based on something he loved, LAN gaming, and PDXLAN was born. "PDXLAN's about the average gamer, not the professional gamer, " Vector remarked. "We're here to have fun with each other. That's what it's all about."

The party was held here, at the Columbia Conference Center in Portland, Oregon.

Two years later, the event is still going strong. Four sold-out events over the past few years has cemented PDXLAN as one of the premiere LAN gaming events in the Pacific Northwest. This year it was bigger and better than ever, and the most highly-sponsored LAN party in North America. 500 gamers from both near and far commandeered the convention center at the Holiday Inn in Portland. The main convention room served as a temporary home away from home for gamers for four days.

There was an offbeat feel to this LAN party, and some of the staffs' case mods reflected this.