Cosplay Contest

Onsite Registration will be available!

Saturday July 29, 2017
Main Events
Online Pre-Registration:
On site registration will be available:
  • Friday: 11:00AM - 3:00PM
  • Saturday: 10:00AM - 1:00PM
Pre-Judging timeslots:
  • Friday: 11:00AM – 12:00PM
    1:00PM – 2:00PM
  • Saturday: 10:00AM – 11:00AM
    11:00AM – 12:00PM
Cosplay Contest Start Time:
Seating will begin at 2:15PM, The contest will begin at 3:00PM.

MechaCon 2017 Cosplay Contest Information

Thank you for considering MechaCon’s Main Cosplay Contest. To ensure your experience is made easier, more fun, and more memorable, please familiarize yourself with the information below.

General Rules

Costumes may draw inspiration from any genre, book, anime/manga, video game, or historical/cultural source. Original characters are welcome.

Groups can include up to 6 individuals.

Participants may only enter the Walk-On OR Skit division. Entering in both categories or in multiple groups will lead to disqualification of all parties.

Entries including cosplays that have won an award at any MechaCon Cosplay Contest in the past will be disqualified, unless that cosplay has been heavily altered.

Cosplays should be self-contained with no external electrical hookups. Any excessive flashing/strobing lights must be reported to MechaCon Staff at the time of entry for warnings to be issued to the audience. Participants must demonstrate electronics for safety purposes upon request.


Walk-On entries will be allowed 30 seconds on stage and will compete to music provided by the convention.


Skit entries will be allowed up to 3 minutes on stage and will compete with the audio file they submitted online. Any audio MUST be submitted online by (July 8, 2017). NO audio will be accepted On-Site. Audio must be in MP3 format and cut to the exact length of your performance before submission. There will be no substitutions for audio at the convention.

Skits may submit their scripts to MechaCon for approval before starting audio. Send scripts to for review. Skits/audio will be screened to ensure family friendly content.

Category Classification

Cosplayers are welcome to enter a higher category if they feel their skill level is appropriate. In the event that judges deem an entry to be a higher level than initially applied, they reserve the right to bump the entry to the appropriate skill level.

  • Novice: For Cosplayers with little or no experience in cosplay contests. Has won no more than one minor award (i.e. Judge’s Award) and no major awards (i.e. Best in Show).
  • Intermediate: For Cosplayers with some experience with cosplay contests or a few awards. Has won no more than two major awards.
  • Advanced: For Cosplayers with a great deal of contest experience. For anyone who has won more than 2 major awards.
  • Exhibition:  For Cosplayers not competing for craftsmanship awards. Cosplays are not required to be handmade and this division is open to everyone.
  • Children:  Only open to those under the age of 13. (Special needs teens may compete in this category if they feel more comfortable in this division.) Parents MUST accompany their child to the Pre-Meeting and at all times backstage.



The Cosplay Team is humbled and grateful for the overwhelming response to Pre-Registration. If you didn’t get a chance to Pre-Register, don’t panic! There will be a few spots available On-Site for all Walk-On categories as well as exhibition. Email confirmations should be sent to all those who entered very soon. Your enthusiasm towards this event is deeply appreciated. Questions can be directed by email to

On site registration will be available:

  • Friday: 11:00AM – 3:00PM
  • Saturday: 10:00AM – 1:00PM

All entries will pick up a Contestant Packet that contains crucial information about your contest entry. The packets will be available for pickup at the Cosplay Registration Desk and packets MUST be picked up before the contestants Pre-Judging timeslot in order to participate. Failure to pick up the Contestant Packet at the Cosplay Registration Desk will result is the dismissal of your entry. Youth, Exhibition will sign up On-Site and must receive their Information Envelopes at the Cosplay Registration Desk at time of registration.

A total of 70 entries will be accepted. (Skits/groups will be considered a single entry.)

There will be slots available for:

  • 10 Children Walk-Ons
  • 25 Novice Walk-ons
  • 10 Intermediate Walk-ons
  • 10 Advanced Walk-ons
  • 5 Skits
  • 10 Exhibition Walk-ons

Because the number of spots in each category is limited, it is suggested that prospective contestants register for the contest A.S.A.P. to ensure they will be judged in the category they belong. Skits MUST Pre-Register online. There will be NO on-site registration for skits. 

All submissions will be emailed by June 30, 2017 to confirm or deny entry into the contest. This email will contain the entrants’ timeslots for Pre-Judging. Please note: time slots will be given on a first come, first serve basis. We will try to put contestants in their preferred timeslot, but we can make no guarantee that everyone will be in the timeslot they requested. Failure to respond to this confirmation email by July 8, 2017 will result in automatic revocation of your entry. Once you have confirmed your entry, no aspects of your entry details may be altered.


The goal of prejudging is to display the full extent of a cosplay’s craftsmanship to a panel of judges in a face-to-face environment. In order to qualify for craftsmanship judging, and walk-ons must have made/remade at least 70% of the costume(s). Pre-Judging will take place in a private room featuring the contestant and the panel of judges. Youth, Exhibition,and Skits will not be Pre-Judged. Each Pre-Judging timeslot will be 5 minutes for each entry. Please arrive at the beginning of the assigned timeslot and wait to be called in for judging.

Pre-Judging timeslots:


  • 11:00AM – 12:00PM
  • 1:00PM – 2:00PM


  • 10:00AM – 11:00AM
  • 11:00AM – 12:00PM

Pre-Registered Contestants:

The preferred Pre-Judging timeslot requested on your application is not guaranteed, and you will be notified before the convention to confirm your official Pre-Judging time.

On-site Registered Contestants:

Your time slot will be given to you at the convention upon signing up. Please note that signing up on Friday will get you a Friday timeslot and signing up on Saturday will get you a Saturday timeslot. Do not wait to sign up, as remaining timeslots will be limited.

Being late to the assigned timeslot does not disqualify a contestant from entering, but it will forfeit all the contestant’s Pre-Judging benefits. This means you will not be eligible for major awards that require a craftsmanship score, no exceptions.

It is not required the cosplay be worn during Pre-Judging. It may be brought on a hanger or in a box to be inspected by the judges. 

Portfolios are highly encouraged, but not required. Portfolios are helpful because they allow up close and personal views at costume construction and give a lot of information in a short amount of time. Because the judges’ time is limited, this allows them to view and review an entry more closely.

Judges must be informed during pre-judging if a cosplay(s) have won any awards previously. The judges’ discretion will be used to determine if the entry is eligible to win additional awards.


The Contest Pre-Meeting will be held in the Main Events Room at 1:30PM sharp. Contestants will be prompted on rules, regulations, and instructed on the flow of the contest. Entries will be placed in order and lined up backstage. ALL CONTESTANTS ARE REQUIRED TO ATTEND. You will find sections with signs labeled with your division and wait there for instruction by a Cosplay Staff member. Please be aware no food or drinks will be permitted during the Pre-Meeting or backstage during the contest. Water Stations will be available. It is recommended you eat before the Pre-Meeting. Please inform Staff if a medical issue requires you to deviate from these rules.

General Contest Information

Seating will begin at 2:15PM. The contest will begin at 3:00PM. The program of events is as follows:

  • Welcoming
  • Children Walk-Ons and Award
  • Novice Walk-Ons
  •  Intermediate Walk-Ons
  • Advanced Walk-Ons
  • Skits
  • Exhibition Walk-Ons / Halftime Show / Judges Deliberation
  • Awards Ceremony
  • Closing Statements: If you must leave before closing statements, please notify cosplay staff.

Awards are as follows:

  • Best in Show – $1,000 + Trophy
  • Best Skit – $200 + Trophy
  • Best Advanced Walk-On – $100 + Trophy
  • Best Intermediate Walk- On – $100 + Trophy
  • Best Novice Walk-On – $50 + Trophy
  • Best Individual Walk-On – Trophy
  • Best Group Walk-On – Trophy
  • Judges’ Awards – Trophy
  • People’s Choice Award – Trophy
  • Platinum Choice Award – Trophy
  • Best Children’s Walk-On – Trophy

Please direct any questions regarding the Cosplay Contest to

Staff has the right to refuse/disqualify any entry, at any time, for any reason. In the event that any foul play or unfairness is detected, the incident will be handled based on the severity of the infraction.

All rules for the MechaCon Cosplay/Masquerade are subject to change without notice. While we will attempt to keep you abreast of any changes via the MechaCon website, these changes may occur at any time.

Join your fellow competitors and attendees in the MechaCon Cosplay Contest Facebook Group!