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Hi everyone - another little PSA regarding the cosplay contest, from your friendly neighbourhood judging team volunteer. The armageddon cosplay gmail account is monitored year-round by volunteers, and gets a reasonable amount of activity concerning non-competition stuff (ideas for events, general enquiries about Armageddon as a whole, etc). If it’s not in the immediate lead-up to a convention (so more than three weeks before a show) you may end up waiting a few days, but we try and keep on top of things as much as possible.

As far as comp queries go, I answer these as soon as I see them. If you’ve asked a question and haven’t gotten a reply within a day or two, and it’s within a few weeks of a show, one of two things has happened: either I am checking something out before I get back to you, OR your email did not come through. This can (and unfortunately does) happen, and it’s bollocks for everyone involved, so please; if you need to know something and haven’t heard back in a couple of days, send a follow up and make sure we’ve received your message.

This also applies to entry forms - we acknowledge the receipt of all entries, and I keep a really close eye on the inbox in the weeks leading up to a con when Michaela is prepping the judging stuff. You will get a response, often same day

ON THIS NOTE: please please PLEASE try not to leave your entry form until the very last second! If we need more information, or don’t receive the email, you still only have until 10pm on the Wednesday before the show to get the final form to us! We enforce this deadline really strictly, and will not allow late entries for any reason. It’s not fair on everyone else to bend the rules because someone’s made a mistake, or hasn’t supplied enough information. This means that if you don’t hear from us, follow it up BEFORE THE DEADLINE or you won’t be accepted into the contest. Make it easier on everyone, including yourself, and allow a couple of days extra time.

And remember: YOUR COSTUME DOES NOT NEED TO BE FINISHED FOR YOU TO ENTER! Just tell us what you’ve done and what you plan to do and how, and we’ll talk about it at judging.

Cheers and beers, and good luck to everyone getting ready for Hamilton and Wellington!

- Sylvie

Hello everyone!

Finally had a rest and recovery myself so I hope everyone is doing well after Christchurch! I have many thoughts and ideas and will be soon text spamming through here (having experience of on site venues and the implications for cosplay choices) also a peak behind the curtain in to what goes on that no one sees and what we do and don’t ask of volunteers.

Just another thank you to every one who entered the contest, to those who made it through the day (it was a hot and cold weekend!) and also to those who put so much work in but were unable to participate. Your forms were truly inspiring and I’d love to see you be able to share your work in any way (whether it be at another contest or online or whatever you feel most comfortable doing.)

~Many thanks again,

Michaela

Christchurch Cosplay Comp
Hi everyone! Some last minute details for the comp tomorrow :) Unfortunately we don’t have a dedicated space…we are sharing with the zombie alley. Hooray! Signs will be up, through Twiggers to the temporary fuzzy wall and up the ramp.

Good luck everyone!

Hi everyone - with the 2014 events fast approaching, here’s another sample registration form for the contest :) Bear in mind that this particular form is a few years old, so doesn’t strictly adhere to the new rules - but it is a fantastic example of how much information we’d like when you submit your registration. This form has been truncated - it was originally 14 pages long. Registration forms often get very large, but unless it exceeds about 60 pages, don’t worry about it being too long. The more information you provide, the better.

Again - you are largely judged on what you include in your form. You only have a small amount of time to talk to the judge, and that time is used to chat, to follow up on details in the form, and see things up close. If you skimp on the form, you are selling yourself extremely short in terms of judging - you can’t be awarded points if you haven’t told us what you’ve done!

This is all included in the registration pack - please read everything carefully before submitting your entry.

Please see the other sample forms for more information.

Registration forms.

For some reasons the inbuilt pdf reader in Firefox cannot read the file properly. So I have added the pdf to the email’s drive.

You can access it here or on the website.

Please use the latest form. Old forms will not be accepted as the rules have changed. Please also include the reference images of your original characters.

Dunedin and CHristchurch fast approaching!

Please remember this year there are *no* hand ins accepted. It’s a big job juggling 6 contests a year across two countries so there can be no special exceptions because that would apply to everyone. And been there done that lost lots of volunteers along the way! So please spread the word- images of the character and how you made it are all that the rego really needs!

Also just a reminder about the rules. Yep, the rules for official events are tougher than for other but this is not just about safeguarding children (which it is- there are numerous little ones at cons that are shorter than adult eyelines) or the venues or the general public but about protecting the cosplayers who enter. Because we can say “No. No it is not the contestants that get in the media for causing trouble” because the rules are such that you can’t.

And yes, sadly people in costume are getting a lot of negative press again- look at the Rugby Sevens in Wellington this past weekend.

Good afternoon!

The new rules are finally up! You will need to read them even though the core reasoning behind the rules has not changed some wording has. The “metal” issue now does include costume clearly.

http://armageddonexpo.com/nz/special-events/2014-cosplay-contest/

The big change is that there will be no more hand ins of entries for anyone. For the last seven years these have caused the most stress because I was usually up until midnight the night before the contest and the paperwork we rely on during the judging and contest couldn’t be finalised until about that time so often we would have to then also get up at 6am to print off the paperwork which mean even more stress right up through judging that did not have to happen.

In previous years it was kept as part of tradition but now it is used by maybe one or two people each show. It often winds up as a loophole for people who only learnt about the contest on the day (so there will be more pushing for more information to be given on the facebook page and tweets etc).

The time to email the form is extended to 10pm on the Wednesday and that does take in to account Aussies- so confirmation may be delayed until Thursday morning because staying up until 2pm is never fun. Which I also still have to do quite often as so many people leave their forms to the last second.

Please remember your cosplay does not have to be complete! It never has been, only the form. Simply explain what you hope to do in the last few days before the contest and during the interviews we can talk about if it worked or if you had to change.

These changes also mean I can work out the order of entries including any special requirements to be at the start or end much more easily. And the whole lot of information can be passed to our organisers and sponsors rather than trying to do all this during the hours of competition. This can all be done before all of us are busy during the hours of the show and can relax the night before also.

I have increased the time limits for skits to hopefully encourage more performances. Again these will need to be put in with your form so we can screen it and make copies for every possible format the tech guys prefer.

Hopefully the rules are clearer, there is just one rego form and I have expanded a little on what the “how did you make it” question needs to be answered. There is now also a nice clearer page on what happens during the day so hopefully it can ease some of those nerves we all get in the morning of competition!

Next update will be calling for volunteers to help regionally- because there are so many shows. The most demanding shows are Wellington and Auckland and possibly Melbourne this year.

Happy New year everyone!

So with the new year comes the start of cosplay planning- well the physical roll up sleeves and start making my own gear and also get the info from the last few months worked over and put in print and file for the contest.

Yes, I am overhauling the rule this week (in between being tech support of this house) and they will be ready and up when the whole Armageddon website is updated.

The basic rules will not change!!! So if you are worried about having started and planned for the existing rules don’t! The rule overhaul is mainly to make a few distinctions clearer (eg original vs original, in one case the character you are referencing and the other a character you made up- it’s about the context).

There is one rule that is changing but I hope by making the pdf pack easier to read and understand that this won’t be an issue. It is to help avoid a major loophole and a lot of work and worry including having files not be able to be played on the day…. This should also be fine by also by making it clear that a registration form needs to be complete but that the costume doesn’t (I think that has been one of those unwritten things that needs to be written!). I know I can be gluing/polishing/sewing/cutting tattoos the night before!

The other benefit of this one change will be to have a list of judging times to be able to be sent out to contestants before the show and keep contact info on file for any media enquiries we get.

So, expect a bit more info but in a clearer format.

Now if I could just figure out how to make an app for registrations that would be super bonza.

Rejigging the contest a little!

Still in discussions with Bill but I am hopefully going to have a plan of action to help eliminate as much confusion as possible!

If you have been keeping copies of the rules over the years you’ll note the basic rules comes down to safety, respect of fellow contestants and making your gear.

It sounds really simply but the problem, and amazingly wonderful thing, with cosplay is everyone comes in from a different background. Even the term “self made” can be grey even if you take to to mean I put this together from pieces I made. That could mean a kit put together through to weaving and dyeing your own fabric. By hand. People do.

I was also in discussions with Jess of the cosplay games and I hope to have more behind the scenes discussion about general cosplay events. But I would like to also be clear about not being involved with them and that these are run by Jess and Kylie and it is all their hard work :) Jess and Sylvie also totally stepped up to the mark for the panels and Ange at Melbourne for being organiser on Saturday and not having an easy job!

Back to the rules! The rules have changed to be more detailed then less detailed in an effort to help everyone have a fair start, and now I am looking at making a far more intuitive form. I’d dearly love to create an online registration to type in fields and have a confirmation page right after (if all fields are filled in) and then be able to do the human reading and parsing of information.

This will most certainly be offsite so I want to look in to safe options.

There may also be scale stick figures indicating some of the reasons for the safety rules. Sorry if people identify themselves. I will be in there going heels over head on icecream (part of our stage safety demo)

I also have not done this before but there will also be a breakdown on where marks come from. I have said I am an additive judge elsewhere, meaning you get more marks the closer you get but also more marks the more you do. It’s simply fair on those who go to extreme lengths to detail and construction.This will not be a :how to win” list but I hopeit will then break down any fears new cosplayers or cosplayers prone to stressing the night before thinking they’ll be marked down for missing detail.

And the registration form will also be clear that the costume doesn’t need to be completed by the rego cut off date! I will add a “to do” field in what ever format is chosen.And then we can discuss this in the room.

In the last two years the numbers of hand ins on Saturday has dwindled to barely the digits on one hand. By making it easier to get your forms in a\electronically, and to tell with tech by having all skits recrecorded and on a single drive/player. And there will be automated posts through here (queued posts, brilliant idea!) to remind people. Everything that can be done to make this change pain free is being done. But it will close loopholes of people entering the day before with rule bending and also mean a whole lot of info can be sent to cosplayers including their viewing time and so again make the Sunday far less stressful

I also will then have a record of every contestant for eery show so that when media come a calling I have your emails!

Next year you may only have me and a couple of volunteers from the Armageddon pool. There are several reasons for this. So please do not fear when you can suddenly see me looking at your work while asking questions. I personally find it rude to be asked a question and then apparently have the judge not hear so I don’t like to appear dstracted when I really am interested. I do hear! I just have to also see. So I’ll practice the art of asking and looking and scrawling notes that cannot be read by anyone. It’s the part of judging I want to be least stressful but it can still be the most.

I would still like to ask any volunteers to help out in their regional city. I only have passes, occasionally food bribes) and this does make things tough.

This also means I am only judge, organiser of the contest and not a go to for general con safety. That is a safety and security issue and I personally do not have the power to stop people. I can be a conduit for concerns to pass to organisers or security. But the decisions and information source for safety is best dealt with thinking what you would wear/carry to a family friendly school fund raiser. There are kids, lots of kids and lots of uneven surfaces and crowds. And 99.9% of the property on site is not yours, please be mindful of your surroundings. That’s as much as I can say.