Article 01: General points & definitions
1.a) The present rules describe the progress of the European Cosplay Gathering Finals and show, below named ECG Finals. It may be completed or modified without prior notice.
1.b) Participation to the ECG Finals depends on the approval and respect of the present rules.
1.c) Any Cosplay show is a show of people or groups of people parading and performing in costumes, below named shows.
1.d) The festival and Cosplay contests staff work for the organization and good progress of the shows, they are below named Cosplay organizers.
1.e) The ECG Finals is a live show produced by SEFA Event.
Article 02: Themes, categories & number of participants
2.a) Participants may perform in costumes representing characters from anime, manga, comics, video games, movies, TV series, comic books, J-Music. The costumes must have official reference therefore, personal creations and fanarts are not allowed in this contest. Each entry will have to be submitted and validated by the Cosplay Organizers.
2.b) Figurines and dolls, if suggested as the main source, must be produced from the original copyright owners, not from a third-party company buying or renting the license. Figurines and dolls may serve as additional references as long as they are identical to the original source. An approval from the ECG main organizer is mandatory when it comes to this situation to ensure the guidelines are respected.
2.c) People may participate solo, or in a duo or trio. People wishing to participate as duo or trio must wear costumes from 2 or 3 characters of the same source (for example, Kamui from X and Lina from Slayers cannot belong to the same group). This restriction applies also to sources from the same global license (example: You can’t mix characters from two different Soul Calibur games…).
2.d) In case of litigation about the legitimacy of the material, the Cosplay Organizers have the final decision.
2.e) Each country taking part in this contest will be represented by one solo and one group (duo or trio).
2.f) These limits may be modified without prior notice by the Cosplay organizers depending on the general organization of the festival.
2.g) The shows are open to any public, of any age and sensibility, therefore the participants’ costumes must be made for the widest audience.
Article 03: Participation to the shows
3.a) The representatives will have to confirm their participation to the Cosplay Organizers, who will validate their costume and performance.
3.b) In case that the selected representatives wouldn’t be able to attend the event, the first runner-up will take their spot.
3.c) The representatives’ nationality must be the same from the country of the event. Participants from another nationality but owning a “Permanent residency card” (or equivalent document depending on the country legislation) are allowed to enter the selections from the country they live in. However they are not allowed to take part in the selections of their nationality country for the same season.
3.d) The participants will have to provide all the documents and material required by the Cosplay Organizers. Failing to do so will result in penalties or disqualification.
3.e) For the group category, one member will be designated leader and will have the responsibility to send all the required documents and material to the Cosplay Organizers on behalf of his/her group.
3.f) The leader must respect and make the other members of the group respect the present rules and the instructions that may be given to him/her by the Cosplay organizers, under any conditions.
3.g) On the premises, he/she has to make sure that all the members are present and that all the documents given for the performance actually work.
Article 04: Performances & accompaniment
4.a) The participants are required to make a performance for the ECG Finals.
4.b) For individuals, the performance can last 1 minute and 15 seconds at most. For groups (duo/trio), the performance can last 2minutes and 30 seconds at most.
4.c) The performance duration on stage may be modified at any time.
4.d) Should participants exceed this limit of time; the Jury will inflict a penalty on the participants’ score or to disqualify the participants.
4.e) The shows are open to any public, of any age and sensibility, therefore the participants’ performances must be made for the widest audience.
4.f) mp3 audio files only are accepted.
4.g) mp4 video files only are accepted. Full HD video files are required to ensure the quality of the show.
4.h) No audio or video montage will be made by the Cosplay organizers, before or during the shows.
4.i) We are not allowed to lend you a microphone for your performance. If it contains some voice, we suggest you to record it. It is allowed to use the official voice and dubbing in your performance.
4.j) If the exhibition media includes voices, they will have to be recorded in English or French so that most of the audience will be able to understand their performance. The participants must provide the script of all speeches of the performance.
Article 05: Compulsory elements
5.a) A picture or illustration in good quality of the cosplayed character must be provided to the Cosplay organizers.
5.b) An accompaniment media in one of the allowed formats (article 4.f and 4.g) and lasting the allowed time for your category (article 4.b) must be sent to the Cosplay organizers.
5.c) All the files must be clearly identified in the following way: Country name – Category (solo or group) – Series – Name of the character
5.d) Script and dialogs of your performance must be given to the organizers so they can make a translation and subtitles for the ECG Finals.
5.e) Work in Progress pictures of the costume for the ECG Finals must be provided to the Cosplay Organizers (up to a maximum of 30 pictures per costume).
5.f) Some additional documents will be required by the Cosplay Organizers like lightplan and costume listing. The original documents will be sent by the Cosplay Organizers.
5.g) The registration will be invalidated and the participants disqualified if any of the documents required is not provided at a precise date given by the Cosplay Organizers.
Article 06: Prizes for the shows
6.a) The ECG Finals will reward:
- Solo category podium (1st, 2nd, 3rd)
- Group category podium (1st, 2nd, 3rd)
The content of the prizes will be announced later by the organization.
6.b) Some additional prizes may be added by the organization without prior notice.
Article 07: Rating criteria
7.a) Each final jury can give 30 points for the costume and 30 points for the performance.
- For costumes
- Accuracy (10)
- Finishing details (10)
- Complexity and techniques (10)
- For Performance
- Acting and Staging (15)
- Quality of Media and use of the stage props (5)
- Creativity and Entertainment (10)
7.b) Stage props are not included in the costume grading, but will be considered and have impact on the performance mark depending on their usefulness during the performance.
7.c) Simple customization to enhance the look on stage or the performance will be tolerated as long they don’t modify or look inappropriate compared to the general aspect of the costume, otherwise penalties will be applied on the costume mark at the appreciation of the jury.
7.d) One final criteria that will influence the jury decision is “the balance”. It represents the amount of efforts that were made on the costume as well as the performance. If one of the criteria is completely overlooked, the balance will be negative; if efforts were made but could have been clearly improved the balance will be neutral; and finally if the participants gave their all in both domains the balance will be positive.
7.e) The cosplay presented during the costume judging must be identical to the ones used for the performance on stage. Any modifications will be penalized, this includes make up, special effects, props, accessories & shoes.
7.f) During the costume judging the costume must be worn the same way it will be worn once on stage for the performance.
7.g) Accessories or props not used/displayed during the stage performance won’t be accepted for the costume judging.
Article 08: Jury and rating
8.a) The official Jury is made of 5 persons from different countries. An official ECG Officer will be present during the deliberation to make sure the criteria are well respected during the discussions.
8.b) The members of the official Jury cannot take part in the contest.
8.c) The winners of the Finals will be chosen by a general decision of the Jury.
8.d) The number of members of the Jury may be modified by the Cosplay organizers at any time without prior notice.
Article 09: Participation restrictions
9.a) Each participant must compete with the costume he announced during his/her registration.
9.b) Apart from the costume used during his/her selections, each participant is not allowed to enter the ECG Finals with a costume previously awarded by a selection or a prize at any other International competition event.
9.c) The Cosplay organizers, as well as the members of the Jury, cannot take part in the shows.
9.d) Any costume presented by the participants has to be mostly hand-made. Each participant must have made at least 80% of his costume himself/herself. Help from friends or relative is tolerated as long as majority of the work done by the participants. Any purchased or commissioned costume will be refused for the registration. Any part of the costume not made by the participant will have to be declared. Failing to do so will result in penalties or disqualification.
9.e) Any representative from the previous year is not allowed to enter and be selected in the same category he/she was selected in last year. (A solo representative can’t compete in the solo category in the year following his selection, however he’s allowed to enter the Group category).
9.f) Any representative selected twice in three consecutive years, regardless of the category, won’t be allowed to enter for two years. After this two years restriction, he/she will be then be allowed to enter any category.
9.g) A group representative is not allowed to enter the group selections category the year after he was selected, even if he/she changes partner(s).
Exceptional changes for Season 10 (2019~2022) and Season 11 (2022-2023) selections:
- Due to the pandemic the restrictions as stated in 9.e, 9.f and 9.g are lifted.
9.h) Each participant must be 18 at the time he/she gets selected.
9.i) Participants aren’t allowed to alter their skin tone with the intention of portraying or matching a character from an ethnicity, existing or similar to an existing one, other than their own. This aspect of portrayal doesn’t have any incidence on the scoring regarding accuracy to the original source material.
Article 10: Props and limitations
10.a) Stage props are categorized into 3 sizes:
- Big size props, can't exceed 20 kilos and require 2 staff to carry it in AND off the stage in one go in 15 seconds max.
- Middle size props, can't exceed 10 kilos and require 1 staff to carry it in AND off the stage in one go in 15 seconds max.
- Small size props, can't exceed 3 kilos and must be carried by the cosplayer in AND off the stage in one go in 15 seconds max if no staff is available.
Each entry at the finals will have the help of up to 4 staff members max to carry the stage props in and off the stage.
Weapons and accessories held in hand don't count in this limit.
10.b) The participants are responsible for the construction and resistance of their props on the stage. These accessories must be solid and stable enough to be carried without special care.
10.c) The participants must send detailed information as well as pictures for the accessories and props. These accessories will have to be validated by the Cosplay Organizers. Any props or accessory not declared/validated beforehand through the official forms and documents won’t be allowed on stage, even if they fit within the designated limitations. The participants have to make sure these equipment are not too heavy, harmful or dangerous for them, the audience or the staff members.
10.d) The Cosplay Organizers are the only ones to decide if a prop fits the rules & guidelines are not.
Article 11: Safety
11.a) Regarding safety issues, pyrotechnics (fireworks, firecrackers, lighters, inflamed or incandescent objects, candles) is forbidden.
11.b) Liquids are forbidden on stage (water guns, full bottles…).
11.c) Weapons (sword and blade replicas) are forbidden, except the ones made by the participants as long as they are no threat to anyone.
11.d) Confetti, glitters are forbidden on stage.
11.e) The organization has the right to interrupt any performance that could be dangerous to the participants or the nearby audience.
11.f) For their own safety, participants are not allowed to get closer than a meter to the edge of the stage.
11.g) Each participant is responsible for their own medical care and the costs related to it.
It is advised for each participant to make sure they are covered on the French territory in case of emergency.
Article 12: Disqualification
12.a) Every participant not complying with one of the articles from these rules exposes himself/herself to getting permanently disqualified.
12.b) Every participant not complying with the Cosplay organizers’ directions can be instantly disqualified.
12.c) Every participant guilty of vandalism, theft, act of aggression (physical or verbal), offending behavior, or any other offense during the festival will be instantly and permanently disqualified. Pursuits will be enforced against him/her according to the current laws and rules.
12.d) Plagiarism regarding the performance is not allowed. ECG participants are required to enter with an original project. Inspiration is of course encouraged and legitimate (from previous cosplay or any other kind of performances), but a plain copy from an existing cosplay performance will end with a disqualification. The sanction can happen post-event after a thorough investigation by the Cosplay Organizers and the ECG Officials. After investigation, the ECG Officials are the only ones with authority to arbitrate on the situation and take action.
Article 13: Image property
13.a) By agreeing with the rules, the participants allow every picture or video taken during the festival to be used for means of communications or promotion of this contest without any financial compensation.
13.b) After the ECG Finals, videos and photos from the participants will remain the Cosplay organizers’ property and could be used in various uses as promotional material. In addition, in the event of a DVD, website, photobook or other material production, there won’t be any financial compensation.
13.c) As for the organizers, they promise that the pictures comply with the ethic and the law. Every picture degrading an individual, pornography and violence are strictly forbidden.
13.d) These rules must be filled in and signed, and then handed to the Cosplay organizers for each participant.
13.e) This authorization lasts for three years. The Cosplay Organizers may ask to prolong that period with the agreement of the participant.
Article 14: Additional Information
14.a) The participants are allowed to compete in a different costume than the one worn for the selections, provided that the Cosplay Organizers approve it. If they wish to do so, they will have to provide pictures of the characters.
14.b) The participants must be able to come to France for a period of one week in early July.
14.c) All the participants shall cooperate in a positive way in order to ensure the success of the ECG Finals. The participants will be coached during the whole ECG Finals trip by the official ECG officers. The participants will have to follow their advices.
14.d) The participants agree to provide as soon as possible every documents the local or ECG organizers could ask (identity card, official documents, …).
14.e) Every participant must bring 3 costumes in France for the different days and events during the ECG Finals.
14.f) Excess baggage at the airport due to the weight of the costumes will have to be paid for by the participant, and not by the organizers. One alternative would be to ship the costumes to France prior to the Finals, but the shipping fees will entirely be paid for by the participant. The participants are asked to keep this in mind when making and registering their costumes.
14.g) Only the participants and the Cosplay organizers are allowed to be in the backstage during the Finals. Helpers are tolerated, but will be asked to leave if they interfere with the good progress of the show or with the work of the Cosplay Organizers.
14.h) The organizers or any other outsider are not allowed to help you during your exhibition.
14.i) Performance order will be chosen by draw at your arrival in Paris.
14.j) The schedule of the ECG Finals will be communicated to the representatives by the official Cosplay Organizers. Participants will have to respect the planning and activities scheduled by the organizers.
14.k) For the costume judging during the ECG Finals, participants are allowed to bring books, portfolios, samples… However, these document and material can only be viewed by the jury during the participant interview time and cannot be left to the jury for examination at a later time. After their interview time, the participants have to leave with all the document and material they brought.