Why do people Cosplay?

It can’t be ignored that geek culture is definitely on the rise. Super hero movies rake in so much cash at the box office, video games are also the highest grossing form of entertainment. It is hardly uncommon to know someone who hasn’t watched a bit of Star Wars or have a certain interest into a fantastical story. Despite some sneering and confusion from people who just don’t get the devoted love people have for fiction being a geek is practically the norm.

Interestingly enough, the extras that played Stormtroopers in the original Star Wars films are a little perplexed by the cosplaying scene. Paul Kirby who attended his first autograph signing at Collectormania Milton Keynes. described his role as just another job. To him seeing fans dressed up at the convention made the people he worked with on set look normal. From his perspective the job was an absolute grind. Having to stay in a boiling hot costume for hours on end was not fun or desirable. At the time Paul had no idea how iconic the Stormtrooper character would’ve become.

The growing trend of cosplaying is testament to this. For those unfamiliar Cosplay is short for ‘costumed play’ which involves a fan of a particular film, T.V show, anime or video game to dress up and embody that character. Describing what cosplay is about is the easy part, describing why people do it is a challenge. It is more than likely a sense of conveying the ultimate passion for a certain fandom. This makes it fun and exhilarating even though to some not versed into the inner workings of what you’re replicating you look like a bit of a plonker. What can’t really be denied though is the extreme effort put into certain cosplays. It takes weeks, days and maybe even months in producing a creative replication of your favourite character.

Emancipation is another reason cosplay is so appealing. Once stepping into the guise of something or someone else you immediately feel different. It’s a form of self-expression that boosts confidence along with breaking the mundane aspects of everyday life for not just yourself but for others around you. It’s similar to living out an online avatar by becoming someone else. Seeing a guy dressed up, as Spiderman on the London Underground is a personal highlight. It makes that trip to work a whole lot more memorable.

Some cosplayers may have low self esteem before donning there get up. They dress up as a character to become someone else for a while. It may sound childish but what’s the point in being grown up if you can’t be childish sometimes.

Local Split-screen Multiplayer Vs. Online Multiplayer

The amount of choice video games provide is very broad. Players can choose how they want to play a certain game through a variety of methods. Characters can be customised and different paths can be taken to traverse through levels. Gaming is very much influenced by choice but the options provided in playing games socially bares two possibilities. There is the old-fashioned split-screen co-op or versus, where a certain amount of players huddle around a T.V and play the same game locally. However since the boom of Xbox live and the Playstation Network there was a radical new way of playing with your mates by connecting online to play the same games. Distance barriers could now be ignored but it led to the ‘player 2 press start’ option to fade away. This is where the old vs new debate comes in. Which one of these gameplay experiences is the most superior in bringing gamers together? There is only one way to find out! Through looking at their pros and cons.


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Arcade, Indie and Retro galore at Play Blackpool.

It’s a celebration for gamers young and old at the Norbreck Castle Exhibition Centre with the Play Blackpool entering it’s second year.

Tickets on the door cost:

Adult: 1 day £14 – 2 days £24 – 3 days £32

Child: 1 day £9 – 2 days £15 – 3 days £20

Family: 1 day £36 – 2 days £60 – 3 days £75

The event will take place May 2nd – 4th with a whole host of games to play. Many rare arcade classics will be playable including Virtua Fighter, Afterburner, Frogger and the Atari Star Wars arcade game, which is over 30 years old. The arcade cabinets will also be set to free play, resulting in no coins needed to play.

It’s not just old school games that Play Blackpool have on offer, the latest indie games in the Xbox One Zone will be playable, some of these include Child of Light, Goat Simulator and the terrifying Slender: The Arrival.

Indie Developers are also on hand to show off demos of their latest games, along with gaming tournaments giving the event a competitive edge. Gamers can show off their skills in Fifa Halo and Super Smash Bros, receiving a prize pot on the Sunday of the event.

For the die-hard gaming enthusiast out there mark the first weekend of May in your calendar for a day of enjoyment no matter what kind of gamer you are.


Norwich Gaming Festival Fully Loaded At The Forum

The past, present and future of gaming were all on offer at the Norwich gaming festival, with classic consoles such as N64 alongside the high tech Playatation 4’s The forum showcased a plethora of gaming history to please avid gamers and non-gamers alike.

Robin Silcock, co-organiser of the festival talked about the importance of making less knowledgeable people aware of games, talking to Mustard T.V she says,

“Something we’re trying to do at the festival is to include the gamers but also their family and friends to sort of bring people who might not play games usually to come along and see what it’s about”.

The festival ran from the 6th-12th April and is in its second year.

Aspiring games designers also get first-hand insight from developers within the industry at gaming talks that were held on the Saturday and Sunday. Attending the talks was Dan Pearce developer of 10 Second Ninja and winner of the BAFTA Young Games Designers competition.

Admission was free however donations were graciously accepted for Games Aid a UK based video games charity which acts as an umbrella to support a number of smaller charities who help disadvantaged and disabled children and young people.

For more coverage take a gander at Breakthrough Gaming’s interviews with Katie Goode, Dan Pearce, Elliot Johnson, Robin Baumgarten and many more.