Cosplay Contest and Masquerade
One of the crown jewel events of the weekend, the Matsuricon Cosplay Contest will not disappoint! With a whole new set-up, new categories and divisions, and the addition of Hall Cosplay, the Cosplay Contest is the most ambitious yet!
One of the best things you can do at a con is cosplay, I mean, you get to be someone else for a weekend. We have many awesome events for cosplayers this year and promise a great time, whether you just like to dress in costumes or you like to compete.
General Cosplay Rules
Whether you compete or not, there are some rules everyone must follow to ensure safety, fun times, and children retaining their innocence, because Matsuricon does love to see the next generation of otaku wandering it’s halls. Follow these simple rules and we won’t have any issues.
• Women’s costumes cannot show less than what a typical bikini shows. If you wear a revealing costume, please make sure you are not going to have any wardrobe malfunctions.
• Men cannot wear anything less than what boxer shorts would typically cover. If a costume calls for anything less, please invest in a body suit or tights.
• Genitals and nipples must be covered at all times. Gentlemen, if you feel like walking around shirtless, we reserve the right to give you duct tape to put over your nipples. (This is not our rule, this is the convention center’s rules, so we cannot sway on this)
• Any costume that restricts your vision or peripheral vision must be accompanied by a handler who can navigate you through the hallways without any trouble. Costumes with stilts must have a handler, as well, and stilts MAY NOT be worn in elevators. Any other costume which is large and bulky (such as large amor/wings) must have a handler.
Weapons and Props
Any and all weapons/props must be approved by security and tagged. This is for the safety of you and others.
• Absolutely NO projectile weapons what-so-ever. This includes, but is not limited to Real guns, Pellet guns, Paintball guns, Air guns, Water guns, Cap guns, Dart guns, Crossbows
The ONLY exception is for an on-duty officer.
Replica guns are permitted after being checked by security with the following requirements:
1. They have no clips or moving parts
2. They can not fire a projectile
3. They have a non-removable orange safety tip
• ABSOLUTELY NO LIVE STEEL – All bladed replicas must be made of a non-metal material, must be non-sharp, and must adhere to the prop length rule. Weapons bought in the dealers room must be peace bound and taken immediately to your hotel room or car.
• All prop weapons must be checked with Security. (we want to make sure gues, blades and such are also peace bonded)
• Props mays be NO MORE than 24 inches taller or wider than you. If you are five foot tall, your prop must be under 7 feet. If you have wings, they cannot extend from your body more than 2 feet.
• Use caution with your props. Any props seen used in an irresponsible manner which may result in anyone being harmed will be taken from the owner until the end of the convention
• Metal is permitted on your clothing as long as it is dull and does not extend more than 2 inches from you.
• Flammable materials (flash powder, cotton, fireworks) are strictly prohibited.
• Your costume must not shed. If we can follow a trail of feathers or other materials and find you, you will be asked to change.
• Signs that are not a part of a costume are prohibited. Fandom signs, personal signs, and non-cosplay specific signs will not be allowed. This includes any signs promoting solicitation (Free Hugs, Kiss for $1, etc)
• Costumes that contain offensive or inappropriate messages are not permitted. Matsuricon staff reserves the right to ask you to cover up or change your costume. Failure to cooperate will lead to your badge being revoked.
Cosplay Competition Rules
• You must have a valid Matsuricon badge in order to compete
• You must have a costume in order to compete
• You may enter both Craftsmanship and Preformance, but you can only enter one costume.
• All costumes must fit into either Eastern or Western animation, video games, or manga. If you are unsure, feel free to ask the cosplay staff.
• Costumes which have won a major award (Best in Division, etc) at any convention are ineligible.
• All participants must meet at the cosplay green room at the designated time cosplay staff gives you for further instructions. If you are late, you risk being disqualified.
• Slots are limited; we cannot promise that we will have enough room for everyone. Failure to show up for your designated judging time will result in disqualification. We will try to get you into another time slot, but we make no promises. Please let us know beforehand if you are going to be unable to make your judging time.
Registering for the Competition
• To compete in the cosplay competition you must complete a cosplay registration form and receive an entry number.
• Online prereg will open soon, so keep an eye out!
• At-con registration will be held on Friday and early Saturday at the info desk. Forms and rules will be available at this location.
• Gophers, badgers and other low teir staff may enter the competition on Saturday afternoon, after we have given everyone a chance to sign up, and as long as it does not interfere with your staffing duties.
• Group entries are limited to 8 participants.
• Skits may be no longer than 3 minutes and 30 seconds. If they are longer, points will be deducted from your score. If they exceed 4 minutes and 30 seconds, you will be disqualified.
• No live steel on stage. Props must be checked by security.
• Skits must be rated PG-13. Matsuricon is a family convention. Anything said, done, or explicitly implied will be disqualified. The Cosplay Head reserves the right to deem what is and isn’t appropriate for our convention.
• Do not throw anything off the stage, or leave anything behind. Matsuricon is not responsible for anything stolen or damaged while you are on stage.
• Skit entries must attend the mandatory skit approval. During this rehearsal, we will be seeing what you are doing on stage. If you deviate from the skit you presented to staff, you will be disqualified. Staff does not like surprises.
• Any fight scenes or acrobatics must be approved beforehand so we can prepare the needed safety requirements.
• Inform staff if you have prerecorded material. All prerecorded material must be in CD, MP3, or WAV format. No other format will be accepted.
• You must have made 70% of your costume in order to enter craftsmanship. Purchased or commissioned costumes are ineligible. The judges know the difference between something you’ve made and something purchased, so don’t try to trick us. Lying to us will result in permanent banning from all future Matsuricon cosplay contests.
• Fanart, Original Characters/Designs and Alternate Universe designs will not be allowed.
• Please have references for our judges, so we can see the character you’re portraying. Your best option is to have printed references. Other acceptable references are figures, models, etc. Unofficial artwork is not permitted. Coming to judging without a reference will result in points being taken from your score.
• Groups are limited to 5 people, and all costumes in the group must meet the 60% crafted rule.
• A seamstress/tailor may use someone else as a model for their costume, however, the person who made the costume must be present at judging and be able to tell the judges how it was crafted.
• Please arrive 10 minutes before your judging appointment and let the staffer who is at the designated judging area know you are there.
• If you are entering craftsmanship, you are required to participate in the cosplay walkons, so our attendees can see your beautiful costumes.
Divisions and Division Requirements
Novice: Contestants who have won zero to 1 major awards in novice category (Best or First place Novice) or up to 2 minor awards (Judges award, best prop, honorable mention etc)
Journeyman: Contestants who have won 2 or more major awards in novice division, have won any award in Journeyman, or have won 3 minor awards.
Masters: Contestants who have won 2 major awards in journeyman division, have won any masters awards, have won 4 or more minor awards, or who have ever won Best in Show.
• If you have entered in a group, the competitor with the highest skill level will mark the division for the group. (If a novice enters with a master level competitor, they will be judged as masters)
• If you enter both craftsmanship and skits, you must enter both in the highest division you have place in. You cannot enter novice in skits and masters in craftsmanship.
• Cosplayers who feel their skill level is higher, may bump themselves UP to a different division, however, they cannot compete in a lower division.
• Cosplayers 12 and under will be entered in the Juniors division.
• The cosplay judges and head reserve the right to move anyone up to a different division if they feel you are competing in the wrong division. Cosplay staff will notify you of any changes made to your division.
Any questions or concerns can be sent to the cosplay head at email@example.com
Cosplay is NOT consent. Please do not touch a cosplayer, their costumes, or props without permission. Cosplayers may be dressed up as your favorite fan servic-y character, but they are still real people. Anyone who disregards respecting cosplayers (and anyone else) will be dealt with by our security team. Anyone who continues these actions will have their badge revoked and be removed from the convention.