A Peek into the World Cosplay Summit 2013 National Finals

by Rizwan Merchant

Ever since I first learned about the World Cosplay Summit last summer, I have made it a personal goal to see one in person. However, due to the accursed constraints of money and time, I don’t see this happening any time soon. Even with the 2013 National Finals occurring four hours away at Anime Matsuri 2013, I was unable to muster the time to attend between school and work.

Thankfully, Anime Matsuri staff put together a live stream service for their cosplay contest as well as both the qualifier round and nationals round of the World Cosplay Summit. Despite some very unfortunate technical difficulties on AM’s part that caused live streamers to miss the entire cosplay contest Saturday night and the first skit of the qualifier round on Sunday afternoon, the competition for title of USA Representative in the WCS was phenomenal.

For those that are unaware of how the World Cosplay Summit is structured, there are three levels of competition held throughout the year: regional, national, and international. Regional competitions are broken into Mountain Qualifiers at Nan Desu Kan, Hawaiian Qualifiers at the Hawaii Entertainment Expo, the Eastern Qualifier at Katsucon, and a Gulf Coast Qualifier at Anime Matsuri. Each qualifier round then sends one representative team to the nationals which were hosted at Anime Matsuri this year, directly following the Gulf Coast Qualifier. The winner of the nationals then move on to compete in Japan for a week over the summer. Each entrant is comprised of a two person team, who must not only showcase their skills in craft as a cosplayer, but also their stage presence by performing a skit in cosplay. We’ll be publishing another article with more details about the World Cosplay Summit and how it works in the coming weeks.

I must say the two competitions I watched on live stream courtesy of Anime Matsuri were very intense. There was a great deal of amazing talent all around, and the level of competition was exactly what I imagined when I’d read about prior WCS events. The winning team and runner up team of the Nationals Round, Cupcake Cosplay andWild Garden Cosplay (both pictured), were just spectacular. I highly encourage you to check out these amazing teams, as well as the rest of the eight teams from today’s competition listed below.

2013_USA_repsCupcake Cosplay after being named Team USA, Photo Courtesy WCS USA Twitter Feed

2013_USA_runner_upsWild Garden Cosplay being named Runner Up Team USA, Photo Courtesy WCS USA Twitter Feed

If you ever get the chance to attend a convention hosting a World Cosplay Summit Qualifier or National Round, you should definitely check out the performances. Also to all you cosplayers out there, I just want to thank each and every single one of you out there. Without the countless hours and painful work of crafting your cosplays, there would not be any events like this. Keep up the good work!

Stay tuned for more coverage from Anime Matsuri once our Agents have returned from Houston!