Swansea Comic and Gaming Convention Cosplay Rules

This year at Swansea Comic and Gaming Convention we will have two competition categories for contestants to enter, which are Craftsmanship and Masquerade.

The Craftsmanship competition consists of judges assessing the contestants handmade cosplay costumes, while the Masquerade will invite everyone to parade their costume. You may only enter one category, not both.


All entrants must pre-register for the competition in advance, by completing the entry form and emailing back to

Your entry form should clearly list; Your Name, Your Age, Your Contact Details and also Your Cosplay Character and Your Character’s Source (e.g. what comic/film/rpg are they from). Please make sure that you indicate which category (Craftsmanship or Masquerade) you wish to enter.

You should also complete the publicity waiver section to enable us to use photos of your cosplay to promote SCGC 2018. Incomplete entries may be disqualified at the judges’ discretion.

The Masquerade

Entrants should report to the ticket desk 30 minutes before the start of the Competition for marshalling (See event programme for times)

The Masquerade will be judged in three categories, Kids (12 and under), Teens and Adults.

The Masquerade will take the format of a catwalk, followed by a short break for judge deliberations, followed by a prize giving.

The Judges’ decision will be final.

Prizes have not yet be confirmed, but will be announced on the day of the Convention, prior to the start of the Masquerade.

Craftsmanship Competition Rules

Commissioned and bought costumes are not permitted in the craftsmanship competition.

To enter the Craftsmanship category costumes needs be mostly self made (roughly 80%). For example wigs and shoes can be bought, but the main bulk of the costume must be self made. Some assistance from friends or family is permitted, but must be explained to judges.

Permitted source materials accepted for the competition include comics, video games, movies, animations, TV shows and other fictional sources. As a contestant you must provide a accurate reference photo or photos of your character (or concept art for original or self-created characters)

The Craftsmanship competition will consist of prejudging, photographing and stage presentation.

Contestants will be allocated an appointment time for a maximum 15 minute slot with the judging panel during the first half of the convention. They will be sent this appointment by email, at least 1 week before the convention.

Photography will be undertaken by CHIC photography immediately after their judging slot.

Stage presentation will take place after the Masquerade Competition.

Contestants are expected to arrive at the convention in time to take part in all stages of the competition.

Please note no performance is required and on-stage charisma is welcomed but not judged.

The Craftsmanship contest will be strictly limited to 16 contestants. Make sure you get your application in early!

Judging Criteria for Craftsmanship contest

There are a maximum of 20 points available to be scored. Judges will be looking at the following areas;

  • Quality Stitching (2) – Stitching is neat outside and inside the costume
  • Material (2) – Carefully selected and skilfully used materials have been used.
  • Fit (2) – The costume fits the contestant well and does not look to big or too small.
  • Hair/Wig styling (2) – Hair/Wig has been styled skillfully and fits the concept.
  • Make-up/Painting (2) – Any painting or make up applied has been executed with great care and looks tidy.
  • Accuracy Reference Picture (3) – The costume on the contestant looks like the costume from the reference picture.
  • Colour matches (3) – Colours match and materials chosen reflect the reference accurately.
  • Effort and Time (2) – Contestant shall share how much time they have applied on each piece.
  • Variety of methods (2) – Variety of methods applied when constructing the costume. Have many methods been applied on single items or multiple items

Prizes have not yet be confirmed, but will be announced on the day of the Convention, prior to the start of the Craftsmanship Competition.

Costume and Prop Rules (These apply to both Craftsmanship and Masquerade competitions)

(with thanks to MCM Comic Con, whose rules we were heavily influenced by)

Attire and Costume Rules

Attire and costume must be suitable for a family event. Nudity is not permitted, nor are exposed costume or prosthetic genitalia, or extreme BDSM gear.

Skimpy costumes are permitted though concessions to accuracy are needed if skimpy to the point of negligible coverage i.e. less than typical swimwear. Take extra precautions beneath a skimpy or delicate costume to avoid exposing yourself completely should something go amiss.

If a costume is bulky, made of hard materials, or includes parts outside of usual human dimensions you must have at least one person with you as a guide.

Allowed Items

Items that people normally carry such as umbrellas or walking sticks, as well as small mundane items such as vegetables, pans, rolling pins, and racquets are

allowed up to a length of 150cm.

Lightweight plastic or foam bats, paddles, and clubs are fine.

Weapon Props

With the exception of items mentioned in the Banned Items list, weapon props are permitted. All Weapon Props should either be;

  • Foam weapons built round a core such as those used for live action roleplaying, or;
  • Unrealistic and toy guns (made of brightly coloured plastics, with flashing lights and stickers), or that are clearly science fiction based (phasers, plasma guns, blasters), and foam firing toys

The maximum size permitted is 150cm, or 180cm in the case of a staff. Larger items must be capable of being dismantled into smaller pieces and be so dismantled if the event is crowded.

Scythes are a particularly difficult item to carry safely. As such, they must be made to disconnect into two parts for carrying regardless of size.

Shields are allowed as long as they do not exceed 1 metre in height or width, and any hard edges and corners are suitably rounded off and padded.

Banned Items

  • Roller skates, roller blades, skateboards, scooters, go-carts, and similar wheeled items (due to venue restrictions)
  • Metal blades whether sharp or blunt e.g. swords, axes, and knives.
  • Actual guns, rifles, or artillery.
  • Heavy bats, paddles or clubs including wooden or metal baseball bats.
  • Heavy items that could be used as weapons e.g. iron pokers, heavy cast iron pans, or crowbars are not permitted. Nor are power tools such as actual chainsaws or hedge trimmers.
  • Bokken- a type of hard wooden (or toughened plastic) training sword.
  • Explosives and incendiary devices.
  • Functional strung bows or crossbows, sharp arrows or bolts.
  • Heavy gas canisters.
  • Protruding nails or other sharp items
  • Any other items restricted or prohibited from being carried in public by UK law

If you have any queries regarding the display or transportation of a weapon or prop outside of the event, contact the relevant authority. Police may destroy confiscated items without warning.

Attendees bring items to an event at their own risk

If you have a question about anything not covered by these rules, please email it to