This past weekend I found myself at Oz Comic-Con Sydney doing something I haven’t done in my history of cosplay. I did my first ever group cosplay and it was certainly a different experience.
However different doesn’t always mean bad. This one experience shared with the lovely people of the group has easily converted me to group cosplay. It’s a case of the more the merrier in group cosplay and while solo cosplay is still just as fun as ever there are some definite pros to be had with a group. To give you an idea of these Pros and Cons I’ll be sharing my experience with you. Hopefully it will help you decide if a future group cosplay is right for you.
Overwatch Suits doing the Dab.
The Pros of Group Cosplay:
Cosplay is fun. We all know this, but in a group it is even better. Cosplaying in a group seems to take the fun you can have doing something in a solo capacity and multiplies it by the amount of people in the group. Who wouldn’t want ten times the laughter, happiness and smiles? Group cosplay gives you all of these great things that it is hard to come away from it with a bad memory.
The fun is elevated and the confidence that comes from being part of a group cosplay vs. cosplaying alone is phenomenal. Ever wanted to try out the ever-present Just Dance set up at your local convention, but haven’t had the guts to do it alone? Don’t worry, your cosplay group has your back. You can all dance terribly together in your matching costumes without fear. Feeling a little self-confident when posing for photos? The group is there to photobomb and make you laugh. You’ll forget that the pictures have the potential to end up all over social media. Having a drama with something you made completely falling apart? The group is there to offer moral support and let you know you look fabulous no matter what.
Playing Just Dance as a group. Photo by Ampersandy.
That last point was particularly relevant to me as I was feeling self-confident about my costume since it was revealing and out of the ordinary. With the rest of the group there to offer encouragement that fear disappeared instantly. Like any good support network they made all problems better or completely non-existent in the first place. There was no worry, just laughter and fun.
Apart from laughter, fun and sugar what else do cosplayers like? Photos! We LLOOOOVVEE photos and a group cosplay assures you of that. Whether it is selfies from others in the group or professional photographers nothing is more certain in a group cosplay than lots of photos. Everyone will want a picture of your group giggling and having fun together. Even if they have no idea who you are all meant to be!
Even with all this the most important pro that I discovered from group cosplay is the friends you make. Going into a
group of over 10 cosplayers when I only knew two of them before hand was truly a daunting thing and I wasn’t the only one in that position within the group. At the end of the day those strangers had become friends to me and that is a truly wonderful gift if nothing else.
Heros never die? Photo by Ampersandy.
The Cons of Group Cosplay:
I know what you are thinking. How can something with so many amazing pros have any cons at all?! Well let me put your mind at ease. The cons I found with group cosplay are few and far between and they are more like minor inconveniences. And by they I mean one…one that is solved very easily.
The biggest con of group cosplay is actually meeting up with the group. There are thousands of people at conventions all packing into one area and finding and coordinating more than one or two people in that sort scenario is a challenge. Trying to organise ten is a waking nightmare. The fact that they are in matching costumes does not help either. In a convention hall you see as many cosplayers as you do regular people and it is impossible to pick out one outfit in a sea of others.
Overwatch Bunnies. Photo by Ampersandy.
Social media is the saving grace of this problem and easily resolves it. Through Facebook it is as simple as a few taps on a smart phone to let your group know where you are. Gotten lost or separated in the overwhelming crowds? You can easily send a picture to your group to let them know where you are. This happened to me once or twice.
See? The problem (or minor inconvenience) is easily solved. Just make sure not to waste all your phone battery taking pictures with other cosplayers and you will be fine. The urge to do so will be beyond tempting.
If you are given a chance to join a group cosplay welcome it with open arms. It is daunting at first but I can guarantee three things from it.
One: you will make some great friends.
Two: you will make some great memories.
Three: you will smile so much your face will hurt.
All these wonderful things are well worth the fear in the beginning. I encourage you all to try cosplaying in a group at least once during your cosplay career. I promise you won’t regret it and I cannot wait to do my next one.