Zookastar welcomes Cosplay.


If you’re a fan of Cosplay, then you’re in for a treat at Zookastar: the art of dressing up as iconic characters from films, anime, videogames and comics (in case you’ve never heard of it before) will feature at our event.


The Cosplay at Zookastar won’t just be confined to random, unpredictable outbreaks of exotically costumed characters parading around the main festival floor (although there will be plenty of those). On the last day, at 4pm, we’ll be holding a Cosplay Masquerade in Zookastar’s main movie theatre. It will last for an hour, and will be a riot of obscure, cyberpunk anime protagonists, dwarves from World of Warcraft, cute Japanese videogame icons and unforgettable movie characters made flesh in front of your very eyes.


And that’s not the end of Zookastar’s Cosplay revelry: we’ll also be enacting a game of Cosplay Chess, with each of the pieces represented on a giant chessboard by a selected Cosplayer, controlled by two serious chess-players. Keep your eyes skinned for details of when this will take place, and how you can get involved, which we will make available closer to the event.


MASQUERADE: The details


If you fancy entering the Cosplay Masquerade, please pay close attention to the rules, order of events and Terms & Conditions below:


Zookastar Cosplay Masquerade –


The Cosplay Masquerade will take place on the last day of the event at 4pm, the winner or winning group receiving a great prize of £100 worth of special gifts from our Traders. The Cosplay Masquerade will be a main stage event.


How to Enter


To enter the Cosplay Masquerade, simply fill out a form at the event registration desk before 13:30 on the final day of the event.


You will need a photo or colour printout of your character or group.


A generic music track will be played for the parade and performances.


If you would like specific music to accompany your performances then please email info@zookastar.com to find out how to submit it.


There will be 2 categories for judging: Parade and Performance. Either category can be as a group or an individual.


All entrants must meet in the Main Screening-Room foyer area 45 minutes before the Masquerade begins for an explanation of the rules, stage etiquette, health and safety, and an example dry-run of the event.


Cosplay Masquerade Timetable


Time                      Event                                                      Location


13.30                    REGISTRATION DEADLINE               Main Registration Desk


15.15 – 15.30     COMPULSORY BRIEFING                  Main Screening-Room Foyer


15.30 – 16.00      BACKSTAGE PRE-JUDGING


16.45                     AUDIENCE ARE SEATED


16.00 – 17.00      COSPLAY MASQUERADE                  Main Screening Room




  • Best Individual Cosplay Parade
  • Best Group Cosplay Parade
  • Best Performance


Judging Criteria

All entries will be judged on the following criteria:

Attention to detail, Presentation, Styling and Make-Up, Craftsmanship, Performance. Construction and accuracy points will be awarded before the parade off stage during the waiting period. The judges’ decision is final and extra points may be awarded for creativity.


You may be filmed or photographed during the Cosplay Masquerade, your image may be used for advertising and promotional purposes or to otherwise distribute or sell. Your consent to this is a requirement of taking part in the Masquerade; by applying you agree to this.

The Cosplay Team reserve the right to reject applicants at their discretion. Failure to provide evidence in a timely manner that your costume is eligible if asked may result in losing your place.



  1. Group entries are limited to a maximum of five people, who must all be from the same published work.
  2. The parade is open to children over 7, but the competition is only for those over 13 and only those will be judged.
  3. The maximum allowed stage time is 90 seconds.
  4. Costumes must be based from a published or broadcast source that has been commercially licensed. Original characters, or designs based on derivative works will not be judged.
  5. A clear photograph or colour image of the original published or broadcast source must be supplied along with each application.
  6. Only self-made costumes and props will be judged in the Parade category. Street clothes as part of the costume must be significantly altered in order to be accepted. Small items such as wigs, spectacles, jewellery may be bought.
  7. Bought costumes are only considered in the performance category or for under 13s.
  8. No costume is no costume. Although there are many popular anime/fiction characters that wear what many would consider “street clothes”, these costumes will not be judged.
  9. All costumes must adhere to the guidelines as laid out in the Costume Policy, and all props must adhere to the guidelines as laid out in the Props and Weapons Policy.
  10. All performance material must be suitable for a PG-13 audience. No harsh language will be permitted. Anyone violating this rule will be immediately disqualified, including mid-performance.
  11. All material brought onto the stage must be brought off immediately after performance without causing any undue delay. For safety reasons, items such as food, lasers, flash paper, lighters, confetti, rose petals, water, and other small messy objects are strictly forbidden from the stage area.
  12. Performances can be of your design such as a sketch, a scene, a dance or dance off, a mime or song or a musical performance or a choreographed fight scene* this must be pre-arranged with the organisers.
  13. A microphone can be provided. If you would like to submit a pre-recorded performance please email info@zookastar.com for the submission details.





Zookastar wants to celebrate many fabulous and talented cosplayers every year. Most costumes are fine, however we do have a few rules that we request that our attendees bear in mind when it comes to their costume.



Costume Policy

Also, please read our Props and Weapons Policy for rules with regards to props:


  1. No costume is no costume. No clothing is no clothing. Nudity is not permitted.
  2. Offensive and/or revealing clothing (including costumes) is prohibited. All clothing (or costumes) must be tasteful and appropriate for a general audience. Appropriate undergarments must be worn. Your clothing (or costume) must cover you at least as well as a modest swimsuit would, with no transparency. Ineffective underwear or a lack thereof constitutes indecent exposure, per Section 18 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1935.
  3. Suitable footwear must be worn at all times within the convention centre. No bare feet. No rollerblades, skates, skateboards, scooters, “heelies”, or any form of bladed or wheeled footwear. These may be used as props for costumes, but may not be worn within the convention centre.
  4. Signs or other materials that can be interpreted as solicitation or panhandling are not permitted – except those considered an established part of a costume. This applies to all types of signs and objects affixed to attendees. Any signs found in breach of this rule may be confiscated by convention staff, and may be destroyed.
  5. No real equipment of any military unit in existence after 1900 is permitted.
  6. No individual may be directly or indirectly connected to another person – this applies to chains, leashes, ropes, or anything else that limits mobility.
  7. Individuals with costumes that are bulky, difficult to manoeuvre, restrict vision, or have mascot-type heads or projecting shoulders, are requested to be accompanied by an unencumbered escort in all high-traffic areas of the convention centre.


Props and Weapons Policy


This policy is in effect in order to keep a safe and fun environment for all Zookastar attendees, committee, volunteers and guests. We would request that everyone abide by the rules outlined in this policy. Most props are permitted, however we request that attendees exercise caution and discretion with their props.


  1. If a prop/weapon is not permitted, you must immediately return it to a safe location – for example, your vehicle or accommodation. Zookastar will not store props/weapons that are deemed unsafe.
  2. All props must be able to fit though a normal-sized door unhindered and without assistance.
  3. All props must not be so large as to be over-encumberable.
  4. All props must be able to be carried by a single person.
  5. Anyone found to be misusing props/weapons (horseplay, duelling, fighting, running/swinging, brandishing threateningly etc.) will have the prop/weapon confiscated, and may be removed from the convention centre.
  6. Any prop purchased in the Traders Hall that would be considered a prohibited prop, must be boxed and removed from the convention centre immediately after purchase. These props must not be unboxed within the convention centre.





Prohibited Props/Weapons


Real firearms Working, replica, disabled, or otherwise.
Projectile weapons BB guns, pellet guns, cap guns, paintball markers, crossbows, dart guns, blowguns, slingshots, tasers.
Live steel Knives, swords, bayonets, daggers, switchblades, axes, skuriken, kunai.*Bokken, shinai and other forms of wooden/bamboo practice swords are permitted.
Blunt weapons Batons, clubs, paddles, nunchaku.
Liquid weapons Water pistols, water guns, water balloons.
Explosives Fireworks, firecrackers, sparklers, stun grenades, smoke bombs.
Chemical weapons Tear gas, pepper spray.
Laser devices Laser pointers, laser-aiming devices
Other Any Weapons prohibited in under the Restriction of Weapons Act 1961.
*Anyone found in possession of a prohibited weapon will be reported to the Police.
Signs not considered an established part of a costume.
*An example of a sign considered part of a costume would be the sign carried by Gemma the panda.
Chalkboards or whiteboards.


Please note that we cannot pre-approve individual props and weapons before the convention. We can only determine permissibility upon viewing and inspecting the prop/weapon. If you have any questions, please contact the Information Officer at info@zookastar.com