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World Cosplay Summit

World Cosplay Summit (official website)

The World Cosplay Summit (WCS) is an annual cosplay event promoting friendly international exchange through Japanese pop culture. Starting in 2003 with only a handful of countries, it has since grown to include countries from all over the globe.

Otakuthon brought the WCS to Canada in 2014 with its winners participating as an observer nation in 2015. Canada was then promoted to full participating nation status in 2016. The winners of the WCS Canada Competition at Otakuthon 2017 will go on to represent Canadian cosplay and compete against cosplayers from 34 other countries for the chance at the title of Grand Champion of the 2018 WCS Championship in Japan!

To register, please click here!


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If you have any questions, please email



Note: All times in Eastern Time

  • Registration opens on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 12:01AM
  • Registration closes on Saturday, June 17, 2017 at 11:59PM.
  • Teams selected to participate will be notified by Saturday, June 24, 2017.
  • Selected teams must submit:
    • a description of their presentation by Friday, July 7, 2017.
    • their presentation audio file by Friday, July 21, 2017.
  • The 2017 WCS Canada Competition will take place on Sunday, August 6, 2017
    • Interviews: Saturday, August 5, 2017, time TBA
    • Prop and large item drop off (optional): Saturday, August 5, 2017 at 10:00PM
    • Stage rehearsal time and costume construction judging:  7:30AM
    • Stage competition time: 12:30PM
    • Times are subject to change
  • Winners will be announced on Sunday, August 6, 2017 immediately after the competition.


To participate in the competition, your team must complete the WCS Canada 2017 Registration Form during the registration period as specified above. In the form you will be asked for the following:

  • Team Information: name, short biography
  • Contact Information: name, date of birth, gender, postal address, telephone, email address
  • Cosplay History: paragraph about why you love cosplay, short history of major costumes and awards, descriptions and photos of four of your favourite past costumes
  • Alternate Member: name, email, date of birth
  • Acknowledgement that each member has read and agrees to follow the rules of the competition as outlined below


General Rules

  1. Only teams of two (2) people are permitted to enter.
  2. Teams are NOT allowed to bring their own helpers or stage ninjas on stage with them.
  3. We will be allowing twelve (12) teams to participate. This is subject to change.
  4. Winners of the 2017 WCS Canada Competition will represent Canada in the 2018 WCS Championship in Japan.


Eligibility Rules

  1. Each team member must be a registered attendee of Otakuthon. You will be asked to present your badge (or proof of registration) when you arrive for the competition.
  2. Each team member must be at least 18 years of age on July 1, 2018.
  3. Each team member must either be a citizen or permanent resident of Canada possessing a valid passport or permanent resident card.
  4. Each team member must be eligible to travel to Japan during the months of July and August 2018, and must possess a valid passport for that period of time.
  5. No team member may have participated in another country's preliminaries nor finals for the 2018 WCS Championship in Japan.
  6. No team member may have judged another country's preliminaries nor finals for the 2018 WCS Championship in Japan.
  7. No team member may have been a member of Team Canada in the previous year. Example: Members of Team Canada for the 2017 WCS Championship in Japan may not compete again until the competition for the 2019 WCS Championship in Japan.

Costumes and Props Rules

  1. Costumes are to be constructed by the entrants. Assembling a costume from store-bought pieces is not allowed.
  2. Costumes worn by the team must be for characters from the same source material.
  3. Teams must abide by the Otakuthon Convention Rules and Weapon Policy.
  4. Costumes must be from Japanese anime, manga, video games, or tokusatsu. The following sources are not allowed:
    • coterie/theater works, fan art, doujinshi, and live-action movies based on manga, anime, or games
    • games with non-Japanese source material, for example, Disney or Star Wars, even if the game may have been made in Japan
    • any work unfit to be sold to persons under the age of 18 years
    • costumes derived from Shueisha series (i.e.: Bleach, One Piece, Naruto, etc.) are not permitted at the World Cosplay Summit in Japan.
    • All costumes, props, and equipment for both team members combined is limited to a maximum of 40 kilograms (88 pounds).
  5. All props need to be self-contained. Items which require external power sources are not permitted. The use of any convention property as a prop will also not be permitted.
  6. It is not permitted to use unrelated trademarked illustrations or logos on equipment or props.
  7. When in doubt, contact with images of the costume in question.
  8. NEW for 2017: To give contestants more time on Sunday morning, teams will be able to drop off and construct large props in the greenroom on Saturday, August 5 from 10:00PM to 11:30PM.

Presentation Rules

  1. The performance time limit is 2 minutes 30 seconds.
  2. Only the two team members are allowed on stage during the presentation. Stage ninjas are NOT allowed to participate in any way during the performance.
  3. Stage ninjas will be available to place items on the stage prior to the presentation and remove items from the stage after the presentation. In both cases, a maximum of three (3) large stage props where setup and/or removal can each be done in at most 40 seconds is allowed.
  4. It is prohibited to enter the audience area as part of the presentation.
  5. The use of fire, water, lasers, strobe devices, and smoke-related special effects is prohibited.
  6. The act of staining, marking, or damaging the stage, the props or costumes of other competitors is prohibited.


Audio Rules

  1. All audio used in the presentation must be recorded in advance of the competition. Speaking on the stage is not allowed.
  2. Audio must be recorded in a common format such as mp3, wav, or wma.
  3. A performance sheet describing what will be performed must be submitted as well.
  4. Original voice tracks from the source material are NOT allowed.
  5. Audio must be submitted by July 21, 2017.
  6. Teams are expected to bring a backup copy to the event in the form of a CD and/or USB device.

Media Rules

  1. Resume information, such as cosplay alias, photos, experiences, etc., may be used for press. Real names and personal contact information will be kept private. If you want to use your real name for press, please note this in your submission.
  2. Media such as TV programs, websites, newspapers, magazines, etc., may use photos and images of the Canadian Finals. By submitting your resume, you agree that no compensation will be provided should your likeness be used.
  3. After the World Cosplay Summit Canada, all media, including but not limited to images, photographs, footage, programs broadcast, DVDs, etc., of the contestants will become property of the WCS Canada organizational team and Otakuthon. No compensation will be provided should your likeness be used.


All cancellations must be made at least 72 hours prior to the competition. Failure to do so will result in exclusion from the following year's competition.


In addition to the two members, teams can specify an alternate member. This individual can replace an original team member if one individual has to step down for some reason. Please note the following:

  1. Alternates must be listed on the resume submission and cannot be changed after the fact.
  2. If no alternate is specified on the resume and one member has to step down, the team must withdraw from the competition.
  3. If the alternate competes as a team member and the team wins, the original partner who stepped down may no longer participate further in that competition year.
  4. Exceptions may be made in the case of a medical emergency.


Teams will be scored out of 30 points as follows:

  • Performance - 10 points - quality of performance, inventiveness, entertainment value on stage
  • Costume Stage Expression - 5 points - look and flow of costume, how it moves, and general visual impact of the costume on stage
  • Fidelity - 5 points - faithfulness to the original character's personality during performance
  • Costume Construction - 10 points - design, faithfulness to the original costume design, craftsmanship and technique

For costume construction judging, teams will have a total of ten (10) minutes. Teams will have five (5) minutes to present their costumes to the judges. The judges will then have five (5) minutes to ask questions. Because teams are required to prepare PowerPoint presentations with progress photos for the WCS Championship in Japan, teams participating in the WCS Canada Competition are also required to do so.

NOTE:  Because teams are required to prepare PowerPoint presentations with progress photos for the WCS Championship in Japan, teams participating in the WCS Canada Competition are also required to do so.


NEW for 2017: In addition to the costume and performance components, there will be a short interview portion as part of the WCS Canada Competition. While WCS is a stage competition,  Team Canada, like all other participating teams, will also be acting as national “cosplay ambassadors” who may meet important members of Japanese corporations and government, as well as be interviewed by Japanese and other participating nations’ media.

Participating teams in the WCS Canada Competition will be provided with a complete list of possible questions in advance of the convention. At the convention during the scheduled interview slot, the teams will be asked a few of these questions to evaluate how the team responds.

NOTE: Because the official languages of the WCS Championship in Japan are English and Japanese, the interviews will be performed in English. That said, the level of English fluency is not a factor, only how the teams present themselves.

If you have any questions, please email