Welcome to the Colourful World of Cosplay!

Cosplayers are an integral part of the Leipzig Book Fair and especially of Manga-Comic-Con. They fill the busy exhibition halls with their imaginative costumes, leaving groups of amazed visitors as they go. Cosplay is derived from a combination of "costume" and "play" and involves dressing up as characters from manga, anime and games or even films and books. The idea behind this wonderful hobby is to create elaborate costumes that resemble the original as closely as possible. At Manga-Comic-Con, you can see for yourself how successful they are each year.

Our Cosplay Rules for a Successful Community Festival

To ensure that all visitors to the Leipzig Book Fair will remember Manga-Comic-Con as a great event with many wonderful experiences, we have a few extra rules compared to other conventions which must be observed regarding costume design and weapons regulations. These may be stricter than at other similar events. We ask for your understanding because of the close cooperation with the Leipzig Book Fair. Alongside cosplayers and manga/anime fans, there will be many other visitors including small children, pensioners and politicians at the trade fair grounds. We ask you to keep to the rules to ensure that our colourful MCC festival remains wonderfully colourful for everyone.

Our Cosplay Rules

Costume Design Rules

I. Prohibited

  • Gasmasks and motorbike helmets; any other masks completely covering your face must be agreed in advance with the MCC team.
  • Sharp corners and edges on clothing
  • Fake injuries more than 10 cm in diameter
  • Any artificial blood, similar-looking liquids, or make-up on body, clothing, accessories and props
  • Zombies are generally not permitted to be portrayed.
  • We reserve the right to reject excessively frightening cosplays (e.g. Pennywise)
  • Costumes depicting or inspired by army uniforms and combat suits from after 1900 are not permitted.
  • We kindly ask all cosplayers to observe §86a of the StGB (German criminal code) regarding political signs and symbols.
  • Costumes must not be too revealing, i.e. the upper body, private parts and buttocks must be sufficiently covered by clothing – this applies to all genders.

II. Permitted

  • Fur, morphsuits and zentai costumes are generally allowed in all halls. Suits that are frightening or unsuitable for children must be agreed in advance with the MCC team.
  • Everyday objects such as walking sticks, musical instruments and umbrellas are permitted.
  • Contact lenses of all kinds are allowed.

III. Other

  • Maximum dimensions for extravagant costumes:
    • Skirts/dresses: max. 2 m diameter
    • Trains and tails: max. 1 m long from feet
    • Fixed wings: max. 1 m width per wing, i.e. 2 m total wingspan. Extendable wings should only be opened for photos when space permits.
    • Max. costume height incl. wings and crowns: 2.5 m
    • Spikes on bracelets and/or chokers may not be longer than 5 cm or sharp.
  • Metal armour must be firmly affixed to the body, loose parts must be presented to the Cosplay Check.
  • Make-up and "dirt" associated with a costume are not permitted to rub off.

Prop Rules

IV. Prohibited

It is forbidden in public to carry weapons as defined by German weapons laws. Some prima facie weapons are also banned from our event:

  • Items made from prohibited materials. These include:
    • all types of metal (when metal is the predominant component). In these cases, the MCC organisers will make a final decision based on an individual request with a photo and description.
    • Plexiglas (due to its sharpness, particularly for the imitation of cutting and stabbing weapons)
    • Wood with a thickness greater than 3 cm (e.g. baseball bat)
  • Weapons that exceed the permissible dimensions in total length (see III. and V.) are prohibited, even if they can be dismantled into individual parts
  • Softair, paintball or Gotcha weapons, regardless of functionality
  • Gas and stun guns
  • Real ammunition
  • Loose, bulky metal chains
  • Slashing and stabbing weapons regardless if they have a sharp or blunt blade
  • Genuine and decorative swords
  • Nunchakus
  • Tanto and decorative sabre knives
  • Handcarts, bobby cars, inline skates, scooters, skateboards and scooters

V. Permitted

Imitation guns and weapons that are not included in the Weapons Act can only be brought to the fair if they comply with the regulations mentioned here and with the Leipziger Messe (PDF, 197 kB) rules. The following are permitted:

  • Imitation weapons made from wood, cardboard, plastic, soft materials, foams or thermoplastic materials (e.g. swords or scythes) and combinations thereof (e.g. foam or latex replicas with stabilisation core) up to a total maximum length of 1.5 m.
  • Pointed tips made from flexible, yielding material
  • Walking sticks and poles up to 2 m long, provided they do not have bulky attachments (e.g. scythe blade, skulls, etc.)
  • Scythe blade max. 80 cm long
  • Shields up to a maximum diameter of 80 cm
  • Non-functioning bows without strings max. 1.5 m and quivers with dummy arrows
  • Throwing weapons made of soft, flexible materials without a solid core

Further Information

  • Any person carrying a weapon as defined by the Weapons Act will be denied access to the venue.
  • Play-fights are only allowed on stage during cosplay competitions and performances.
  • Anyone found on the grounds with an unmarked prop must immediately go to the Cosplay Check. Any refusal to have props checked and labelled will result in confiscation.
  • All prohibited items will be stored at the Cosplay Check for a fee and can be retrieved at the end of your visit.
  • Any decision made by the security personnel at the Cosplay Check is final and cannot be contested.
  • All visitors carry their props at their own risk and are liable for any damages caused.
  • Props for participants in selected cosplay competitions will be stored separately and brought to the cosplay stage in time for their performance. Props will be returned when you leave the exhibition grounds. Cosplay competition organisers will inform participants as to which competitions are subject to this regulation

VI. Cosplay Check Opening Hours

  • Thursday to Sunday: 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • The collection of confiscated or surrendered cosplay equipment is only possible between 5 and 6:30 pm.

You are welcome to print out these rules and bring them with you.

Cosplay Check

Many cosplay costumes require an imitation weapon. However, the laws of the Federal Republic of Germany and our duties as organisers and operators result in guidelines that must be strictly followed. This is why we will be carrying out the Cosplay Check at Manga-Comic-Con (see below).

Cosplay Check Opening Hours Thursday to Sunday: 8:30 am to 5 pm, from 5 to 6:30 pm it is only possible to collect confiscated or surrendered cosplay equipment.

Cosplay Manager for the Duration of the Trade Fair

Our Cosplay Manager will be available throughout the trade fair to answer all your questions. If you have any questions on the Cosplay Check, the cosplay rules or other issues concerning cosplay while you are here, just contact your buddy on 0341 678-6955.

Rules on Photography at MCC

It is tempting to take out your camera for every costume and capture these masterpieces for eternity. But don't forget that behind every costume is someone with personal rights. We have therefore put together the most important rules on photography for you here.

Rules on Photography at MCC

  • If you take a picture of another visitor, you must ask their permission first. Each person has the right to control the use of their own image and may not wish to appear on other people's cameras without knowing.
  • Photography is permitted anywhere, as long as it doesn't disturb the flow of visitors. Please avoid busy locations such as the glass tubes, walkways and the main entrances to the halls.
  • At the request of the community, stationary props such as screens and ladders are forbidden everywhere on the grounds (result of a survey in January 2019).
  • If you would like to publish photos after the event, you will need a declaration of consent (ideally in writing!). This is because in Germany the right to control the use of your own image applies. This states that every person has a basic right to control whether and in which context photos of themselves are published. In the case of children and young people under 18, a declaration of consent must be obtained from the parents.
  • By the way, publication does not only cover websites and magazines. Facebook and other social media channels are public!
  • Disregarding the personal right to control the use of images can lead to severe penalties.

Our Tips for Cosplayers:

  • Don't take your personal rights too lightly. We understand that you want to show your lovingly created cosplay costume to the entire world. But have a think in advance about who you would like to be photographed by.
  • Ideally, you can ask for the contact details of the photographer and ask what they what to use the photos for. That way you can keep an eye on where your photos have ended up.