As a major center for Japan’s anime culture, Ikebukuro has gone for a slightly more Japanese approach to this imported annual festival. Expect to see more people dressed up as their favorite manga or anime character rather than the more gruesome costumes that you’ll see elsewhere.
Do I need a ticket?
While it’s free to see cosplayers outside of the special event venue, if you want to enter the area, dress up, or take photographs you’ll need a special ticket. Details to be confirmed.
- A simple photographer’s license costs ¥2,500 in advance.
- A regular cosplay ticket offering changing-room access costs ¥2,500 in advance.
- For an upgrade you can purchase a Premiun Pass which includes a photographer’s license as well as early entry, luggage storage, premium dressing rooms, separate powder rooms, cosplay conceirge staff and more — it will set you back ¥3,500.
As is standard for most cosplay events, organizers are very particular about not arriving to the area or leaving it in cosplay, so you’ll have to change in the provided dressing room. You have to register first, after which you’ll usually get a badge, stamp, wristband, or whatnot to signify that you changed in the dressing room and can therefore participate in the event. You may also only be allowed to roam about in designated areas; some restaurants and shops may not want cosplayers to enter in costume, so organizers will usually list which establishments allow cosplayers to enter.Organizers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.