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  • Animeleague Cosplay Rules

    Animeleague Cosplay Masquerade Guidebook


    1a. Overview

    This guide contains information on how to signup, how the masquerade will be judged, and all props/weapons rules for cosplaying in general. Please make sure to read through the guide beforehand. If you have any questions then just email us on cosplay@animeleague.com or visit our Cosplay desk on the day of the event!


    1b. Pre-Sign Up Form

    Note you do not need to pre-sign up, we allow signups on the day at the cosplay desk as well.

    Please fill this form in and email it to cosplay@animeleague.com of who you are cosplaying. If you want us to play a specific music-track please ensure you also send it before the close of signups (typically 2 days beforehand) the email, we will not provide it on the day. Note whether we allow specific music will depend on the event:


    Convention & (If more than one contest) Days Entering:
    Name/s: (if you're a group enter all names)
    Character Series:
    Character Names:
    Is your Costume Handmade (least 80%)/Altered or Bought:
    (Optional) List 3 distinctive things about your costume: (ie: maybe something you handmade, why you selected the character, etc)
    (Optional) If doing a Skit (Performance), the details:
    Do you give your consent to be contacted about further Cosplay opportunities? Y/N

    If your character is not well-known, we advise to attach a reference picture/photo to assist our judges. You may also wish to include photos of your preparation and annotate this, but we stress this is purely optional and will not heavily affect judging unless otherwise stated.

    2a. Registrations

    - Signups take place before the event via sign up forms OR you may also signup on the day. On the day signups are usually closed half an hour before each masquerade unless otherwise stated.

    - Please turn up at the Cosplay Desk/Area at least half an hour before the masquerade is due to be start to be ordered and prepared for the event.

    - All types of costume may be entered unless otherwise stated; Costumes from film, anime, video games, music, TV, comics, books and theatre.

    - The competitions are open to all ages unless otherwise stated. If you are under the age of 13 please make sure your parent/guardian gives full consent for you to enter the Masquerade. This can be done by getting a parent or guardian to sign the application form or verbal consent on the day.

    - A hand made costume must be 80% your own work, and we do check! Bought costumes (as a whole or separately-acquired outfit from a shop or from e-bay) or altered costumes will be eligible for judging but will not be eligible for the 'craftsmanship' category. Specific components of the costume if fully crafted or heavily altered (such as an intricate weapon) may receive marks within the 'craftsmanship' category, given at the judges discretion. It is advisable to include information regarding hand made elements within your application form.
    All costumes will qualify for the categories of 'character likeness' and 'performance'.

    - If you are doing a skit and it has been approved via e-mail please make sure you visit the Cosplay deak NO LATER THAN 1 hour before the masquerade so we can check through your tech requirements. (see note under 2b for 'cues')

    2b. Performance

    - During the masquerade itself we highly encourage you to perform/pose however you wish. We ask for a minimum of three poses. If you are uncertain as to where to present your poses you are advised to use the three point system, typically enter stage from one side, pose. Walk to the other side, pose and finish centre stage (in the middle), pose, before exiting on the other side. This is unless you are doing a skit.

    - You may come on to your own specific music you have provided (provided we are not doing generic music only). Note if you don't provide music beforehand then you'll come on to generic regardless.

    - Skits (planned performances) are entirely optional. If you are doing a skit, you must tell us the full details of what you have planned and we reserve the right to decline your skit or stop it if it is/becomes inappropriate.The maximum skit length is two minutes for an individual entry and three minutes for a group. We will cap skits to a maximum of five per masquerade unless otherwise stated.

    - Setting up music 'cues'. This ONLY applies to music that has been sent to us. We encourage anyone with a music-track to visit us well before the Masquerade event, this is also vital if performing a skit. There are two basic types of cues, you begin your performance off stage and we will start the music-track. You begin your performance on stage and give us a signal to start the music-track. Please make sure you state this either under additional requirements on your application form or you notify us on the day.

    - You may be filmed or photographed during the masquerade and Animeleague or the event may wish to use your image. By entering these events you agree to this.

    2c. Judging

    Costumes will be judged in three areas by our professional judging team;

    Craftsmanship - The quality of the costume and how well it is made. If costume is bought from a shop then this receives 0, if it is altered this is marked at the judges discretion.

    Character - (Including character likeness and character concept) How true the costume and cosplayer is to the idea of the character. Note this does not necessarily mean they should look exactly like the character; we allow your own creative interpretations (crossplay for example), as long as it recognisably feels like the character and the changes made are creatively done.***If you are presenting your original interpretation or character this will be marked based on likeness to information/concept provided to us.

    Performance - Takes into account audience and performance reception, as well as how well in character you act. For example your mannerisms, movements and generally how you present yourself/perform to the audience.

    Pre-judging does not occur at most Animeleague masquerades, (although there are some exceptions) as it is time consuming, however we have a team of very capable and skilled judges who will examine your costume before the event itself and while on stage. The 'list three distinctive things about your costume' on your application allows each entrant to highlight specific points about costume, character likeness & performance.

    3. Props Rules

    Due to health and safety, these rules apply unless otherwise stated by the event.

    All weapons and props must be checked at the Cosplay desk on first arrival and approved by staff before allowed into the convention.

    Your prop may not be allowed to enter the Convention for one or more of the following reasons:
    • Too large/unwieldy
    • Blocks corridors/doorways or is likely to hit or inconvenience others
    • Too heavy
    - If it's heavy, it can hurt, especially if dropped
    • Too hard
    - No props made of hard wood, or any sort of metal
    • Too sharp or spiky
    - No sharp bits or edges, make sure they're sanded/rounded/padded/covered or otherwise protected adequately
    • Too realistic
    - No realistic replica weaponry without obvious 'Blaze' (brightly coloured) tips and the weapon itself being out of use, of course.
    • No actions which may lead event staff, attendees or members of the general public to believe you are in possession of a real live weapon, even at a distance. In these cases it is not only up to our (Staff) discretion; we do also have Venue Security in place who will have to approve it.
    • No pyrotechnics, explosives (including cap-guns) or incendiary items
    • Actual weapons (including airguns, deactivated guns, blunted/sharp knives or swords, live bows or slingshots) are expressly prohibited

    In all cases, the weapon or prop must be no longer than 1.6 m (5.2ft). Any items longer this may be used in the Masquerade only and must be handed in to Registrations & Help Desk for safekeeping until then. If they are not handed in prior to the Masquerade they will not be permitted in the event itself

    Please know that these rules are here to assure we have a safe Conventions for both Staff and Attendees. If you have been asked to put your prop away please be so kind and do so or in an extreme case you might risk being escorted from the Convention.

    A general safe rule is;
    ‘If you were to be hit with it repeatedly, would it break before you do?’
    - If your answer is ‘no’ here then it means that someone could get hurt were this to happen. In which case we would recommend you leave it at home just so you don’t get disappointed once at the Convention.

    If you are in doubt whether or not you would be allowed to bring your prop please send photos and a description of the prop to cosplay@animeleague.com


    All Information contained within this document is property of Animeleague and should not be used in whole or part for an event without our prior consent in writing.
    Comments 7 Comments
    1. Redback's Avatar
      Redback -
      So I'm guessing something like a guitar or a bass would be too heavy to be allowed as a prop?
    1. MaskedWarrior's Avatar
      MaskedWarrior -
      So no Metal prop weapons of any sort any where in the Convention? regardless of whether it is a blunt convention piece.
    1. Snowcat's Avatar
      Snowcat -
      @MaskedWarrior
      Here's a basic "rule of thumb" to work by :- If someone was hit on the head with the prop, what would break first?

      Breaking props is unfortunate, breaking heads is not allowed...
    1. Danuzumi's Avatar
      Danuzumi -
      I got a short plastic rifle as part of my Gun Gale Online cosplay (not a real one obviously) but no brightly colored tip. Been fine at other cons but i assume it might be a problem here?
    1. UrbanGamer15's Avatar
      UrbanGamer15 -
      Would a very light, small master sword made from blunt sanded wood be ok?
    1. Princekohi's Avatar
      Princekohi -
      I've made a roughly 45 inch tall hammer for my cosplay and the handle is made of pine wood (the actual hammer head is just cardboard), I will be able to add padding or a rubber cap to the ends of I did this would I still be able to carry it around the con, I really want to get pictures with it at the con since it took a lot of hard work to make
    1. Major Eazy's Avatar
      Major Eazy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Snowcat View Post
      @MaskedWarrior
      Here's a basic "rule of thumb" to work by :- If someone was hit on the head with the prop, what would break first?

      Breaking props is unfortunate, breaking heads is not allowed...
      you seem to have some knowledge on cosplay props would it be allowed to bring in like a full size toy gun made of plastic ?
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