Vibrant characters at the Tokyo Game Show

  • Matthew Hillian

Not being a big video game fan, I was hesitant to head all the way out to the Makuhari Messe convention centre (a 1000 yen train ride each way) for the Tokyo Game Show. I didn't know what to expect. One of the industry leaders in video game art and design, what dominated Tokyo Game Show were the vibrant characters, brought to life quite literally by models and cosplayers abound at the event. Photographers snapped away busily around the displays of robots, virtual reality and anime characters dancing on giant LCD screens. Watch the video here.

Many game companies hire models to promote their products, but cosplay is a more individual display. Costumes and uniforms have carried importance for a long time in Japan, but the cosplay (Costume Play) trend we see today began around the early 2000's, when specialty shops devoted to cosplay started popping up around Akihabara. It continued to grow, with more and more cosplayers dedicating themselves to perfecting their craft, personifying their favorite anime, manga and game characters to the smallest detail. Events such as the Tokyo Game Show allow the cosplayers to get their name out there, with some even building a level of celebrity status in the cosplay community and its dedicated followers. Set up outside the event was a cosplay area in the open air, which led everyone to shuffle for cover when a slight downpour arose. (source)