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This category is for all ages. The point of this category is to be judged on the basis of make-up and prosthetics, NOT your costume. You can have a store-bought costume, handmade costume, full-body prosthetics, or street clothes. The only important thing is the make-up and prosthetics. 

All contestants ages 10 or under, whether competing in Youth or Make-up, MUST have their parent either on stage with them or be standing just off the stage.

Youth (10 & Under):

This category is for contestants ages 10 and under. However, depending on how the contestant is dressed up, they may be asked to compete in make-up. For more information, please consult one of the judges or the cosplay director.

All contestants ages 10 or under, whether competing in Youth or Make-up, MUST have their parent either on stage with them or be standing just off the stage.

Novice (First-Timers!):

This category is for beginners ages 11 and up. This is your category if this is your first or second time competing in a cosplay competition. Your costume can be store-bought, handmade, or partially made, but you must be in costume.

Intermediate (50% or more must be handmade):

This category is for slightly more experienced competitors ages 11 and up. If you’ve competed a couple of times and want to try your hand at being judged in a higher tier, but don’t feel you are ready for advanced, this is the category for you.

If you are a more experienced contestant, but are under the age of 18, this category is also for you.

Your costume can be fully handmade, or partially handmade, but no more then 50% of your costume can be store-bought.

Advanced (85% or more must be handmade):

This category is for experienced cosplayers ages 18 and up that want to try for the “Best in Show” award. Your costume must be a minimum of 85% handmade. No more than 15% of your costume can be store-bought.

The reason for this age restriction is because some of the vendor-donated prizes include adult-only items and tickets to adult-only events.


* For any questions about category placement, please consult either the cosplay director or one of the judges present at the sign-up table.



Weapons Guidelines


Weapons NOT permitted at Sinister Creature Con include, but are not limited to the following:

No live steel in the form of, including but not limited to:

 - Knives, swords, star knives, shuriken

 - Any form of metal weapon made to take an edge.

 - Chains must be cleared with Masquerade director and be peace bonded accordingly.

No guns or projectile launchers of any kind will be permitted. Including but not limited to:

- Actual firearms including ammunition for said firearms. (Handguns, rifles, shot guns etc.)

- Airsoft guns (Any and all, functioning or not, even with no moving parts.)

- BB guns and Pellet guns

- Bows*, crossbows*, dart guns, and blow guns (Prop Bow and crossbows with no strings are permitted but must be cleared and peace bonded)

- Functioning water guns or pistols.

- Stun guns and Tasers

- The only exception to this rule will be Prop or resin models that are easily identifiable as toys, provided they are clearly marked with a non-removable orange tip.

No “paddles” of any sort

No NUNCHUCKS of any kind

No EXPLOSIVES or CHEMICALS of any kind, including but not limited to:

 -smoke powder, sparklers, or fireworks of any kind

If it is illegal outside in the City of Sacramento and/or state of California it is illegal inside the convention



Weapons That Are Allowed

Staves, Bo sticks, Shinai, and wooden swords will be permitted as long as they are handled responsibly.

Fake, prop, and made-up weapons (i.e. made of foam, cardboard, cloth, etc.) are permitted if they are safe and not dangerous.

Examples of dangerous conditions include but are not limited to: Items that may trip others, items that can snag on people or surroundings, items that obstruct doors and halls.

Pros shall be limited to less than six feet, six inches (6’6”) in height and less then 50lbs in weight.

Any metal chains are to be less than three feet (3’) in length. Any chain longer than that will be peace bonded shorter.

When in doubt just ask one of the cosplay staff. Also, if you don’t get stopped by cosplay staff that doesn’t mean the item is allowed.

Note: Any and all weapons policies are subject to change at any moment at the discretion of Sinister Creature Con staff and Cosplay staff.

Peace-Bonding Policies

Sinister Creature Con wants to provide the best possible con experience while maintaining a safe Family friendly environment. We ask that any and all things that can be considered a weapon be taken to Cosplay staff for peace bonding. If you purchase something and want to use it as a prop, please bring it by the table and we will be happy to peace bond it if it falls under our guidelines and policies. We ask any weapon that is purchased that can be considered dangerous be taken and put in your vehicle 

We do not allow concealed weapons. Your cosplay weapon may be zip tied to the holster or sheath. All props must be certified by the Sinister Creature Con Cosplay staff even if they have previously been peace bonded at other conventions.

These policies and rules are in place to ensure the safety of all the attendees. We are very lenient on our weapons policies compared to other conventions because we want you to focus on enjoying the convention so please let’s continue to have good and SAFE fun.

Peace-Bonding Guidelines

The effectiveness, or ineffectiveness, of the item or the skill, or lack of skill, of the person in possession of the item is irrelevant when determining whether or not it is a weapon.

All weapons & props must be approved at the peace bonding table upon entering the convention.

If you purchase a weapon or prop such as: swords, knives, stars, air soft guns, plastic pellet guns, gun blades, wooden katanas, Kendo sticks, etc. and you intend to carry it around the convention as a prop you need to take it to peace bonding to have it approved. 

If you do not intend to use it as a prop, we would appreciate it if you kept it in the packaging and placed it in your vehicle.

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