Rules on costume design, props and imitation weapons at Manga-Comic-Con

Cosplayer:in schminkt sich auf der Manga-Comic-Con 2024

To ensure that all visitors to Leipzig Book Fair remember Manga-Comic-Con as a great event with many wonderful experiences, we would like to give cosplayers specific information on costume design and weapon regulations.

These rules may be somewhat stricter than at other events. We ask for your understanding, as Manga-Comic-Con is closely linked to Leipzig Book Fair. This means that in addition to cosplayers and manga/anime fans, there will also be a large number of other visitors on the exhibition grounds, such as families with small children and senior citizens.

We ask all cosplayers to adhere to these rules for the sake of fairness towards other cosplayers.

Cosplayer:in vervollständigt ihr Kostüm und setzt eine bunte Kontaktlinse ein auf der Manga-Comic-Con 2024

Basic information

Many cosplay costumes cannot do without "imitation weapons" (hereinafter referred to as props). However, the laws of the Federal Republic of Germany and our duties as organisers and operators result in guidelines that must be adhered to at all costs. We therefore carry out a "cosplay check" at Manga-Comic-Con (see below).

Please dress, style and apply make-up at home or in your hotel rooms, as there will be no changing rooms available on site. Those responsible for contaminated sanitary facilities will be held liable.

Cosplayer:in vor Blütenbaum auf der Manga-Comic-Con 2024

Our cosplay rules

1. Costume design rules

1.1 Prohibited

  • Gas masks or motorbike helmets; other full-face masks must be agreed with the MCC team in advance.
  • Sharp corners and edges on clothing
  • Depictions of injuries with a diameter of 10 cm or more
  • Any artificial blood, similar-looking liquids or make-up on the body, clothing, accessories and props.
  • Zombies may generally not be depicted.
  • We reserve the right to reject too scary cosplays (e.g. Pennywise or horror characters).
  • Costumes depicting or based on army uniforms and battle dresses from the period after 1900 are not permitted (e.g. Umbrella Corporation).
  • We ask all cosplayers to observe §86a of the German Penal Code (StGB) when depicting signs and symbols.
  • Costumes must not be too revealing, i.e. the upper part of the body, private parts and buttocks must be sufficiently covered by clothing or costume parts - this applies to all genders.
  • Depiction of natural skin colours that do not correspond to one's own (e.g. brown- / blackfacing).

1.2 Permitted

  • Fur-, morphsuits/centais are generally allowed in all halls. Suits that are deterrent or not suitable for children must be agreed with the MCC team in advance.
  • Everyday items such as standard walking sticks, musical instruments and umbrellas are permitted.
  • Contact lenses of any kind are allowed

1.3 A place of tolerance

Manga-Comic-Con is a place of diversity and tolerance. When designing your cosplays, please make sure that you do not discriminate or shame any population group, ethnicity or culture. Our world is diverse. Please treat it with respect.

1.4 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 shar
  • 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.

2. Prop rules

2.1 Prohibited

It is forbidden in public to carry weapons as defined by German weapons laws (WaffG). 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.
    • plexiglass (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 1.4 and 2.2) 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

2.2 Permitted

Imitation guns and weapons that are not included in the Weapons Act (WaffG) can only be brought to the fair if they comply with the regulations mentioned here and with the Leipziger Messe (PDF, 243 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.
  • walking sticks and poles up to 2 m long, provided they do not have bulky attachments (e.g. scythe blade, skulls, etc.)
  • attachments on walking sticks, poles or similar may be a total of max. 80 cm wide
  • 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
  • pointed tips made from flexible, yielding material

Further Information

  • Any person carrying a weapon as defined by the Weapons Act (WaffG) will be denied access to the venue.
  • Show 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. However, if there are any disagreements, the MCC Cosplay Representative may be called in.
  • 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

You are welcome to print out these cosplay rules (PDF, 209 kB) and bring them with you.

Cosplay questions?

Concrete requests as to whether or not a specific costume or certain props may be worn can be sent to with a photo as well as the full name.

Please understand that our security staff on site have the final decision-making power.

Cosplay Check opening hours

Thursday to Sunday: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

From 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm, only the handing out of cosplay equipment that has been handed in or retained will take place.

Cosplay Representative during the fair

Do you have any questions about the cosplay check, the rules for costume design or other cosplay-related issues? Our Cosplay Representative will be there to advise you on site. You can reach them during the fair on +49 341 678-6955.

MaCoCo posiert vor einer Wand in der Jubiläumsausstellung der Manga-Comic-Con 2024 für einen Fotografen mit einem Smartphone

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.