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Hall Cosplay Contest

Unlike the Masquerade, the Hall Cosplay Contest does not require you to perform on-stage. If you want to get judged for your craftsmanship and your craftsmanship alone, this is the contest for you! You may choose to be part of a "Fashion Show" at the start of the official masquerade if you wish, but participating in it is not mandatory.

Judging will be based on costume quality and accuracy. All contestants must follow security policy on weapons and apparel. Winning contestants can receive awards at the Masquerade or on Sunday morning at the Masquerade HQ.

Participating in the Hall Cosplay Contest:

  1. Registering (Pre-con Expectations for Participants)
  2. Checking In (At-con Expectations for Participants)
  3. Rules
  4. Divisions
  5. Awards
  6. Judging Process
  7. Masquerade Fashion Show
  8. Special Requests

  1. Registering (Pre-con Expectations for Participants)
    • You must pre-register for the Hall Costume Contest online. Online registration begins on December 1, 2013 and closes on February 1, 2014 (or when all spaces have been filled). Participants are chosen on a first-come, first-serve basis.
    • There will be no at-con registration for the Hall Cosplay Contest.
    • Hall Cosplay Contest winners are announced during the Masquerade.
    • There are 35 spots available in the Hall Costume Contest.
    • We have a "wait list" of 15 groups in case last minute cancellations occur. Any slots that open up due to cancellations before the convention will be given to waiting list groups in order. Cancellations are not uncommon, so the first ten groups on the waiting list have a very high chance of being in the show, and the next five have a reasonable chance. If you are in the first ten spaces on the waiting list, you are required to check in at the convention to see if there is space for you.
    • The Hall Cosplay Coordinator will be e-mailing the primary contact for your group on a regular basis with important updates. You must keep your contact information updated. If your e-mail is bouncing and/or your phone number no longer works, we will be forced to remove you from the Hall Costume Contest or the Waiting List. You can update your contact information on the Cosplay HQ page or by sending us an email alerting us of any changes. If you happen to misplace the Coordinator's email please contact them via our Contact Page.
    • The deadline for changes to group lineups will be MARCH 1ST at MIDNIGHT. Any changes submitted after this time may result in your group being dropped from the lineup. Cancellations will be taken up to the start of the convention, and the remaining spaces will be filled by wait-listed groups.
    • All contestants must be attending members of Anime Boston 2014 and will need to present their badge at both check-in and at their judging time.
    • By registering, all Hall Costume Contest participants agree to let Anime Boston and the New England Anime Society use their images for promotional purposes. This applies to both photography and video.
    • Minors under 18 years of age may not participate in the Hall Costume Contest unless given written permission by a legal guardian. Forms will be available at the convention and online prior to the event. Please bring the signed copy with you to registration check-in if you are less than 18 years of age.
    • If you are interested in participating in the Fashion show at the Masquerade, please indicate this on your application. There will be a period of time where you can change whether or not you wish to be in the Fashion show.
  2. Checking In (At-con Expectations for Participants)
    • You must check in at Masquerade Headquarters during operating hours on Friday of the convention before your judging time.
    • Craftsmanship judging will occur on Friday or Saturday. Participants will be given the option of a morning or afternoon slot when they register. Please note your preferred judging time on your application. We will make every attempt to honor the request.
    • The Hall Costume Contest awards will be announced on Saturday at the Masquerade. An exact start time will be posted closer to the convention and the times will be listed in your convention guide. Hall Costume Contest participants may show their badges at the door to get special seating near the front of the main events auditorium. If your group is planning to participate in the Fashion Show, this seating is a requirement.
    • If you are not present at the Masquerade to pick up your award please come Sunday morning before 11am to Masquerade HQ to pick it up!!!
  3. Rules
    • Anime Boston is a Japanese Animation convention, so all costumes must be based on Anime, Manga, Japanese-origin video games, OR live action series based on Anime or Manga (such as Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon or Cutey Honey.) Generally, if the series and/or character originated anywhere else than Japan, it doesn't qualify. (Obviously, Japanese adaptations of foreign material are permitted-- such as Rose of Versailles, Gankutsuou, or RomeoXJuliet.) If you have doubt as to whether your costume qualifies, please contact the Hall Cosplay Coordinator.
    • J-ROCK AND J-POP IS PERMITTED in the Hall Costume Contest.
    • We do allow costumes based on promotional art for anime and manga, even if the costumes do not appear in the actual series. In these cases you must notify us ahead of time that you will be using promotional art as the basis of your costume and be certain to bring the promotional image with you to judging as a reference picture. This does not include fanart!
    • Costumes based on original characters are not eligible.
    • You may not wear a costume at the Anime Boston Hall Costume Contest that was worn for any previous competition at Anime Boston. (This pertains to the Masquerade and Hall Costume Contests. Costumes that received ribbons in the Staff-Vote costume contest are still eligible.) You may, however, wear a variation of a costume you have worn before. If, for instance, you participated in the Masquerade last year as Edward Elric, in order to participate in the Hall Cosplay Contest as Edward Elric this year you would need to have a completely new and different costume.
    • You may not enter both the Hall Costume Contest AND the Masquerade.
    • YOUR COSTUME MUST BE HOME-MADE. Costumes purchased or rented or any costumes made for you by a professional designer or seamstress are prohibited. Ignoring this rule will result in disqualification of your group even if only one person in the group has an ineligible costume. Please tell us if one person in your group made all the costumes. That person (as long as they are a member of your group and not a professional seamstress or tailor) is eligible for the Crafstmanship Award.
    • You may wear a costume that was made for you by a friend or relative as long as the maker of the costume is present for craftsmanship judging. In this case, any Craftsmanship award is presented to the creator of the costume, not to the model wearing it. Remember, no costume made by a professional tailor is eligible, no matter who wears it.
    • All members of a group must be wearing costumes from the same series.
    • Each contestant may wear one and ONLY one costume. The only exception to this rule is a group of people wearing a large costume all at the same time.
    • The maximum number of members allowed in one group is 10 people.
    • Costumes must be self-contained. Connections to electrical sockets will not be available.
    • Please review Anime Boston's Props Policy & Prohibited Items List. All costumes and props used in the Hall Costume Contest MUST COMPLY with the these policies.
    • No costumes that would be banned in a "PG-13"-rated film will be allowed. The State of Massachusetts DOES have public decency laws. If you are on stage please adhere to the Masquerade restrictions against lewd gestures (ie: explicit sexual gestures and nudity). Breaking this rule will result in an escorted expulsion from the convention center with a permanent ban on future Masquerade and Hall Cosplay events.
    • Please show respect to your fellow cosplayers backstage and during judging. Any heckling or threatening of other participants will NOT be tolerated, and may result in your dismissal from the Masquerade/Hall Cosplay.
  4. Divisions
    All entries will register under ONE of the following skill Divisions:
    • Novice: Your group may compete in the Novice division as long as:
      • No member of the group has won more than one minor award at Novice level at previous conventions.
      • No member of the group has won more than ONE (1) major award at any previous convention.
      • No member of the group has won any award above Novice level (Intermediate, Advanced/Craftsman or the equivalent).
    • Intermediate: Your group may compete in the Intermediate division if:
      • No member of the group has won MORE THAN THREE (3) total major awards at any previous convention.
      • No member of the group has won more than one major award at the Intermediate level at any previous convention.
      • No member of the group has won any award above Intermediate level (Advanced/Craftsman/Master or the equivalent).
    • Master: Your group will be required to compete in the Master division if:
      • If any of the group members have won more than one major award at Intermediate level at previous conventions.
      • If any member of the group has won more than THREE (3) major awards at any past convention
      • If any member of the group has won any award in the Master division at any previous convention.
    • Youth: Your group may compete in the Youth division if all group members are age 14 or younger. (If there are less than three Youth entries you will all be bumped to Novice.)

    Please Note: that the definition of "Major Award" is any award that starts with the words "Best," "Most," "First," "Second," or "Runner-Up." Honorable Mentions count as Minor Awards. Three minor awards equal one major award. Both presentation and craftsmanship awards count. When in doubt about your eligibility for a division, contact the Hall Cosplay Coordinator.

  5. Awards
    • First place, Novice Division
    • Second Place, Novice Division
    • First Place, Intermediate Division
    • Second Place, Intermediate Division
    • First Place, Master Division
    • Second Place, Master Division
    • First Place, Youth Division
    • Best Overall
    • Judge's Award - Four awarded

    You may always choose to compete at a higher level than that for which you qualify. For instance, if you think the quality of your skit or costume is above the usual standards of Novice level (due to extra preparation, a more ambitious project, extensive stage experience, etc) then you are encouraged to participate at the Intermediate or Master's level.

    • If you have opted to register and compete in a higher skill division (Intermediate, Master etc.) in the past, and won ANY AWARD in that division, you are obligated to compete in the same Division (or higher) thereafter. Knowingly entering Novice division when you ought to be in Intermediate or Master's is grounds for disqualification.
    • While it is not technically against the rules, please refrain from competing with a costume that won a major award at another convention. It is frowned upon and in poor taste to do so.
  6. Judging
    • You must indicate on your registration application what time you would prefer to be judged. You will be assigned a time slot by the Hall Cosplay Coordinator, and will be notified of this time slot before the convention. Craftsmanship judging will be held in Masquerade Headquarters.
    • Craftsmanship judging will occur on Friday afternoon, and Saturday morning. If you miss your craftsmanship we will attempt to reschedule, but we cannot promise that we will have time to judge you.
    • All Hall Costume Contest participants must bring at least one color picture, preferably two, of each character. A black and white image is acceptable if you have designed a manga-based costume for which no color image is available. We recommend that the images you choose be full length (including shoes). You should bring an actual image from the anime or manga - a screen cap, a manga page or a piece of promotional art (same goes for Jrock/Jpop cosplayers). Failure to bring a reference picture may disqualify you from craftsmanship judging, since the judges can't judge your costume if they don't know what your character is supposed to look like.
    • One of the major craftsmanship judging criteria is how closely the costume matches the original source material. If some portion of your costume is never shown, such as the back or the shoes, then you should design the missing components as best you can.
    • Every contestant needs to be prepared to answer the judges' questions about his/her role in the construction of his/her costume.
  7. Masquerade Fashion Show
    • Hall Costume Contest participants will be invited to wear their Hall costumes to the Masquerade and participate in a fashion show to be held before the Masquerade.
    • How this will happen: A section of seats in Main Events will be set aside for anyone wanting to participate. You will be able to gain access to these seats by arriving to Main Events before Masquerade seating begins.
    • The music for the fashion show will be pre-recorded. You will not be able to bring your own music.
    • All entrances are from Stage Right, exits are from Stage left.
    • Upon being announced, you will cross to center stage (which will be marked), pose, and exit. The time period for posing should be no longer than 30 seconds.
  8. Special Requests
    • If you have any special requests or concerns (such as requiring large props, those who are rendered blind in their costume and need an assistant, or needing to be judged early or late on a given day, or anything else unusual) contact the Hall Cosplay Coordinator before the cut-off date given to you when you apply or place the request on your registration form. Because of the complexity of the event, few special requests will be able to be met, but the sooner you notify us about them, the more likely it is that we can accommodate you. Please contact us in advance. Special requests made at the convention itself are likely to be impossible for us to accommodate.