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Ideal 'Setup/Loadout' for cosplay at PAX East?

AkaiatanaAkaiatana Registered User regular
Hello friends,

I'm currently speculating going to PAX East 2018 as my first PAX. I know it's early, and that's kind of the plan. I'm a cosplayer in Ontario, Canada. My cosplays tend to be involved (long suit-up/undress times, large props, low mobility, and prosthetics). If you wouldn't mind, could you answer some outsider questions for me? (I've already looked up the cosplay weapon rules)
  • When I'm at the con itself, I'm there to cosplay. Is there any sort of premium/VIP attendee pass that cuts through lineups so that I can get to a place safely on the show floor?
  • Is the Westin the closest/most accessible hotel to the con? Is any hotel directly attached?
  • Are there cosplay recovery/break lounges at the BCEC? (No photography allowed, place to sit down and redo straps)
  • Is there any sort of official bag/coat check where you can pay to store things?
  • Is there any official costume contest?
  • I know that any crowd is a throng, and PAX is dense with people. In general, though, are they generally aware of the cosplay =/= consent? I will have a handler if I cosplay. Will that be enough to stay safe?
  • Does the convention centre openly allow outside food (store-bought snacks and the like?)
  • Are there any infamous and known (BAD/scammy) photographers to say no to?

    Followup questions:
  • If you tell me which hotel is the most accessible, should I book it before or after I have tickets in my inbox? Should I book them the day the official dates are announced?
  • Are there any cosplay events outside the con worth going to over the weekend?

Any other advice is welcome.

Posts

  • MrBroadstoneMrBroadstone Registered User regular
    edited July 31
    When I'm at the con itself, I'm there to cosplay. Is there any sort of premium/VIP attendee pass that cuts through lineups so that I can get to a place safely on the show floor?
    No. All attendees are to be treated equally.
    Is the Westin the closest/most accessible hotel to the con? Is any hotel directly attached?
    Westin is closest, followed by Element and Aloft. It is directly attached but the attachment is not always open.
    Are there cosplay recovery/break lounges at the BCEC? (No photography allowed, place to sit down and redo straps)
    Usually no. Occasionally a company sponsored a cosplay lounge, but this hasn't happened lately as that company was Riot. There's frequently been a repair shop, but I think it is dependent on a group willing to run it. People are expected to use courtesy about photography everywhere but it isn't prohibited anywhere.
    Is there any sort of official bag/coat check where you can pay to store things?
    There's several coat checks. Depending on weather they can fill up.
    Is there any official costume contest?
    No. A specific company, if present, may have their own contest they put on, but that isn't guarenteed.
    I know that any crowd is a throng, and PAX is dense with people. In general, though, are they generally aware of the cosplay =/= consent? I will have a handler if I cosplay. Will that be enough to stay safe?
    Contact you speak of is prohibited by rules and it taken rather seriously. Exercise as much caution as you like. Can't say **everyone** is aware fully aware as would be ideal, but harassment is prohibited. Written on all the badges and on entry signs.
    Does the convention centre openly allow outside food (store-bought snacks and the like?)
    Formally outside food and drinks are prohibited by most convention centers, but they turn a blind eye on snacks at pax. I'd advise against entering with huge bags of outside labeled food.

    Followup questions:
    If you tell me which hotel is the most accessible, should I book it before or after I have tickets in my inbox? Should I book them the day the official dates are announced?
    If you want the Westin or another very near hotel, I advise booking by whatever means neccessary. The hotel block for all the nearby hotels is extremely competitive. Moreso than the tickets.
    Are there any cosplay events outside the con worth going to over the weekend?
    Often there are interesting events, but they're depending on just what happens and who runs an outside event.


    Other bits:
    The weapons rules generally apply to all parts of the costume. Sharp bits on the costume are also prohibited. If you were to have spikes and bump into someone with those spikes and that would hurt someone, it would be prohibited too. You mention low mobility and a handler. I'd make sure you have no risk of falling over if you are bumped/jostled accidentally by a crowd. If the costume would injure someone when you fall over, that would be bad. I've seen a cosplay of some giant 10ft willowy character in jumping stilts. As you can never stop moving in jumping stilts, they were actually restricted from leaving an open area and couldn't just walk through the exhibit hall. If a crowd forced them to stop, they'd fall on people.

    MrBroadstone on
    AkaiatanaTopherRocks
  • AkaiatanaAkaiatana Registered User regular
    Thanks so much for answering my questions. It gives me a lot of info to prep around.

    Re: costume build details and low mobility, that part I've got covered. I'm a 501st member, if that speaks to anything. Handlers are just a blessing to have, to notice if a piece falls off, carry water and bags, or to redo a strap in the middle of my back. Low mobility means slow walking and elevators rather than escalators. Maybe to be a rear view mirror if a helmet reduces visibility.

    I'm really excited to give this a shot.

  • MrBroadstoneMrBroadstone Registered User regular
    Ahh in that case you should look into Boston's late 2015 law on replica firearms. Makes replicas require bright orange tips. I'd ask around on what others experiences were with fantasy guns/blasters rifles and Boston Police during pax East this year.

  • AkaiatanaAkaiatana Registered User regular
    Whichever costumes I bring will likely not have firearms. Besides getting through customs, they are a lot of hassle on show floors or people are uncomfortable with them being pointed at them. I prefer melee weapons overall. Besides, if you have the room to set up a fight pose between characters, action shots don't need to have projectiles digitally added in.

    Thanks again for all your help.

  • BekerBeker Child's Play Guy and PAX VR Freeplay Manager SeattleRegistered User, Penny Arcade Staff regular
    Just to make sure you know, we don't allow people to stop and take photos on the Expo floor walkways. It causes pileups in an already extremely crowded place. If possible with a complicated or impressive cosplay, I'd recommend exploring the show floor on a day or time that you are not in costume. There is a tremendous amount of PAX content not on the show floor to enjoy. The hallways and foyers have plenty of traffic but have plenty of room for crowds so work much better for cosplay.

    If you do have any issues with harassment, please let some Enforcers know, Info Desk is ideal for reporting if its not an emergent issue as they have the best tools to respond, but feel free to let any nearby Enforcer know if you need more immediate help. We want PAX to be a safe place for everyone.

    -Beker/Erick
    NDoOjUb.png
    Akaiatana
  • AkaiatanaAkaiatana Registered User regular
    Beker wrote: »
    Just to make sure you know, we don't allow people to stop and take photos on the Expo floor walkways. It causes pileups in an already extremely crowded place. If possible with a complicated or impressive cosplay, I'd recommend exploring the show floor on a day or time that you are not in costume. There is a tremendous amount of PAX content not on the show floor to enjoy. The hallways and foyers have plenty of traffic but have plenty of room for crowds so work much better for cosplay.

    If you do have any issues with harassment, please let some Enforcers know, Info Desk is ideal for reporting if its not an emergent issue as they have the best tools to respond, but feel free to let any nearby Enforcer know if you need more immediate help. We want PAX to be a safe place for everyone.

    Thanks, Beker. Noted about the expo floor. When I was saying, "Get onto the floor," I was thinking of what you suggest: a good place to be seen. 90% of cons I've been to have been small enough that the expo floor is the only major area.

    I've heard of the legendary enforcers and excited to see them in action. Thanks for providing a safe con experience.

  • klzklz Registered User regular
    If it helps, due to the insane crowd levels, the far ends of the top floor have been heavily used for cosplay gatherings/picture taking opportunities because those areas are not as heavily trafficked and have enough space for the cosplayers to gather relatively comfortably.

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