Kumoricon - 9th Annual Anime Convention - Labor Day Weekend - Sept. 3-5, 2011 - Hilton Vancouver Washington & the Red Lion Vancouver at the Quay

Cosplay Chess Rules

Come see your favorite characters battle it on a giant chessboard stage! Cosplay Chess is an event where convention attendees in cosplay serve as the pieces, and at the direction of two chess masters, will move, fight and die live on stage. The combats are not pre-scripted—anything can happen!


The event is open to all registered convention attendees. You must have a valid Kumoricon badge for the day of the match.

Kumoricon Staff may participate if it does not conflict with their Staff responsibilities.

General Information

How to Participate

The participants in the chess match are chosen from among the convention attendees. No knowledge of how to play chess is required—the two chess masters will direct your movements. If you are interested in participating, you must submit an application, along with an image of your costume. Registration for Cosplay Chess is not first-come, first-serve; participants will be selected based on popularity of the characters, as well as the quality of the costumes. Be certain to read the Chess Rules before you submit your application.

The Game

There will be 32 chess pieces, and two chess masters who will be controlling the moves of the pieces on the board. Alternates will also be selected in the event participants drop out or miss the pre-meeting, and for special attacks.

The Battle
  1. There shall be little or no physical contact between pieces not currently engaged in battle. During a battle, you may not touch the piece you are “fighting” unless you ask and they consent first. If you hurt, injure, or inflict any discomfort on another player in any way, shape or form you will be removed from the game immediately, no exceptions.
  2. When a move is made by the chess masters that results in a piece being taken, a battle will take place.
  3. All pieces, except the two involved, will remove themselves from the board and the two pieces will battle. The use of special attacks and moves is encouraged, and the back-up players, if called on, can join in the battle.
  4. The attacker will always win.
  5. The two pieces will battle and put on a show for the audience, and the loser will “die” in a dramatic way. Battles should last no longer than 3 minutes—if the battle exceeds the time limit, the attacker will be called on to “Finish Them”.
  6. The loser will leave the board and observe the remainder of the match; they can get back into the game if a pawn makes it to the end.
  7. After the losing piece leaves the board, all the remaining pieces will return to their previous positions. Positions will be marked, so you will have to remember the number of your space before the battle started.
  8. Being in character is encouraged, as is play-acting. It would be impossible to provide microphones for all participants, so battle cries and the like should be loud. Other characters can also be used (i.e. for special attacks), except for those already on the board. However, do not get overly enthusiastic and harm someone (see #1).
The Rules
  1. All entries must be easily recognizable characters from a manga, anime, or Japanese video game.
  2. All costumes must:
    1. Be PG-13—any entries that disregard this will rule will be discarded. All costumes must follow the convention policies.
    2. Be self-contained, with no electrical plugs or other outside support required. A costume should be something that the applicant can move in; chess is, after all, a fighting game, and movement will be necessary for the role-playing. If your costume is bulky, heavy, heavy looking, or awkward, an explanation should be included with the application explaining in detail how the design of the costume makes quick movement possible.
    3. All weapons must adhere to the convention’s weapon policy, and must be peace-bonded. If Staff believes the player is violating the rules of peace-bonding, that player will be removed from the board and replaced.
    4. No props or stage accessories will be allowed which scatter. This means no confetti, no fake blood, no rose petals, and nothing else that could disrupt everyone’s footing.
  3. Images of your costume must be submitted with your application. You will not be considered without all the information on your entry, as well as images. Remember to include your name and contact info, and the name/series of the character you are playing. You may submit more than one costume for consideration.
  4. Costumes will be selected on quality and construction, as well as popularity of the character and show. Costumes not completed at the time of the convention may not be allowed to participate.
  5. Participants will be decided and notified of their position the week before the convention, and will be required to attend a mandatory pre-game meeting. If you do not attend the meeting, you will forfeit your place and it will be given to someone else.
  6. Any decisions of the Cosplay Chess Coordinator and Director of Programming are final.

Portland Police Bureau Sunshine Division

Our charity recipient:

Mascot art by Ha-Young Lee, Brenna Goche