1. All contest participants must be a registered attendee of Rob-Con.
2. The cosplay competition will be divided into different categories reflecting the cosplayers’ relative experience, based on recommendations from the International Costumers’ Guild. The divisions will be Novice, Journeyman, and Master for individual contestants.
Novice division is for entrants who are new to cosplay and costume creation. You would not qualify for the novice category if you are a professional costumer, you have placed more than twice in the Novice category at any other cosplay competition, or if you have won “Best Novice” or any higher award at any other cosplay competition. Anyone meeting these criteria should consider entering the Journeyman division.
Journeyman division is an interim division for contestants who have consistently won awards in the Novice division, but who feel they are not yet ready to compete in the Master division. You would not qualify for the journeyman category if you are a professional costumer, you have placed more than three times in the Journeyman category at any other cosplay competition, or if you have won “Best Journeyman” or any higher award at any other cosplay competition. Anyone meeting these criteria should consider entering the Master division.
Master division is for anyone who wishes to enter, including professional costumers. A contestant may always choose to compete in a higher division than is recommended by these guidelines, but they may not choose to compete in a lower division.
Any questions about which division you should enter should be directed to Cosplay Event Staff.
3. No nudity. No costume is NO costume. Body-paint costumes are not eligible.
4. To compete to win prizes in the judged portion of the cosplay competition, you must pick up a sign-up form for the competition at the registration desk. On the form, you will indicate which skill division you wish to enter, as well as provide contact information. Once the form is completed, you will be directed to the Judging area where you will be given a number. Judging will be first-come, first-served between the hours of 9:30 and 1:30. All contestants will be given time before the judges, which allows them to see your cosplay up close, ask questions, and listen to you talk about the techniques you used to make your cosplay.
5. It is not required, but strongly recommended that you bring full-color reference pictures for the character you are cosplaying to judging. You may not be eligible for full accuracy points if the judges are not familiar enough with your character to make a determination without a reference picture.
6. It is not required, but you are permitted to bring pictures showing your costume creation process. No more than 6 pictures will be considered. Pictures must be printed in color. No electronic files or devices will be accepted. Keep in mind that the judges will not have time to read a lot of text if you choose to make a full portfolio. Not having progress shots will not adversely affect your score, but they do offer a much better view into all the work you have put into your cosplay.
7. Costumes need to be at least 75% crafted by you. Commissioned costumes are not eligible in scored competition.
8. All genres of costume are allowed, including original designs, however, it is recommended that contestants entering original designs bring a reference picture (or two) of the character or style that inspired the design. (For example, Steampunk Batman or Lady Loki)
9. Surprise the audience, but never surprise staff! Any ‘surprise elements’ must be run by the event coordinator and approved. Violating this may result in disqualification from future contests.
10. No profanity allowed. This includes messages on signs or clothing. Anyone who violates this may be disqualified from the competition and may be asked to leave the convention area.
11. No political or religious statements. Anyone who violates this may be disqualified from the competition.
12. Costumes must be self-contained. Any electronic elements must be wired to a battery pack and integrated into your cosplay design. Contestants will not be allowed to plug in any electrical elements for competition.
13. Nothing is to be left on the stage after the performance including, but not limited to, glitter, confetti, and streamers.
14. All prop weapons must conform to the Rob-Con Props and Weapons Policy.
15. For safety reasons, the following are not allowed:
Substances which might damage or stain
Projectiles of any kind.
Pyrotechnics, including but not limited to: fire, flash powder, explosives, smoke bombs or fireworks.
Entries that could potentially damage the facilities, other participants, or the wearer.
16. Each contestant may only enter one costume into competition, appearing on stage once in a single entry.
17. Large elaborate costumes must be handled by the contestant and/or assistants the contestant brings to help. No assistants will be provided.
18. Tech rehearsals are not offered.
19. All contestants are asked to report back to the Judging area at 2:00 to line up for presentation on the main stage. The stage walk portion of the contest will begin at 2:30.