Video game cosplay is an artform that we tend to encounter time and again in publication, online, and sometimes, in person. It obviously takes much practice – the preparation, the skill required, the material handled, and of course, the actors behind the costume. But still, let’s continue on.
What is cosplay?
Cosplay is the art of wearing the clothes and acting as though one is a character of a video game or a video franchise. It is imitation, and not just so – it also includes being “one” with the character, being in “tune” with the character to talk about. To act like the character that the person is exemplifying is also to know what the character likes, hates, and in a way, to be the character themselves, if only for a second.
According to cosplay artist Angelo Ampil, cosplay is about “intricacy in detail.” He thinks the point is to see the small details in between the lines. “Say, for example I make a Genji suit, I have to see the small details in it.”
Cosplay in society
Cosplay has been around for ages. In history, since the time of Shakespeare, laypeople would act as though they were theater actors in the middle of the street. These days, however, we laypeople act as though we are “theater” actors, albeit of the theater of television and video games.
Ampil says, “it’s about the friendships (made) during the conventions.”
Cosplay goes a long way, too. It gives us a way to signify what kind of person we truly are. What kind of person do I want to be? Who do I plan on being? Who have I always wanted to be? Cosplaying is simply more than just “wearing.” It is, also, in a way, “being.”
Ampil shared his experience with cosplaying in his earlier days. “I found people with similar fandom.” He shared about how his Overwatch cosplay has led him to more friends in the game.
Cosplay in our lives
Cosplay is a central part of the life of some people who actually do cosplay for a living. Some make costumes for cosplayers on a daily basis or in a client basis. This allows for stimulating and cohesive interaction between the cosplayer and the artist who will make the costume.
Now, is Cosplay harmful or harmless? Ampil says, “It depends. There really aren’t harmful cosplays, just harmful cosplayers!”