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Nadia's Midboss Musings: Best of Otakon 2017 Cosplay!

Let's all dress up and freak out.

This article first appeared on USgamer, a partner publication of VG247. Some content, such as this article, has been migrated to VG247 for posterity after USgamer's closure - but it has not been edited or further vetted by the VG247 team.

I attended Otakon 2017. "Otakon" stands for "otaku convention." An otaku is a girl like me who likes Japanimation.

Actually, I don't know if I'd classify myself as an otaku; I watched some of My Hero Academia over the weekend, and that's the most anime I've consumed in months (outside of episodes of Dragon Ball Z Abridged).

But Otakon has gradually become a celebration of geek culture in general, so it's hard to feel left out if you're a kid at heart. Besides, many aspects of Western entertainment are intertwined with anime, manga, and Japan in general, so Otakon's just kind of become a warm, gooey mass of games, anime, manga, comics, movies, and TV.

If it's on TV, or if it's ever been on TV, it's fair game for cosplay.

In fact, Overwatch was one of the most popular cosplays at the show this year – and Overwatch isn't an anime, a comic, or even Japanese. I've been going to Otakon for thirteen years now (give or take a year), and it's been interesting to watch cosplay evolve and branch out. We're well beyond the days of seeing ten thousand Gokus wander the show floor (though Dragon Ball Z characters are still very popular cosplays).

For this week's Midboss Musings, I'm highlighting some of the best game-related cosplays I saw at the show. Maybe it'll get you in the mood for the fall cosplay season, AKA Halloween.

Final Fantasy XV was a popular cosplay choice, and more than a few of those cosplayers dressed in Noct's "Moogle-Chocobo" carnival get-up. Final Fantasy XV may be a technically imperfect game, but the draw of its beautiful boy cast cannot be denied.

I saw a Neku cosplayer from The World Ends With You on my first day. Good start! Relevant, too; we just talked about the game on Axe of the Blood God.

Unsurprisingly, there was a lot of Persona 5 cosplay this year. Much of it was conventional, but a few costume choices were a bit bizarre. For example, why cosplay as a Phantom Thief when you can cosplay as the Velvet Room?

I cosplayed as Fox, incidentally. Look! I found friends! We're starting a band.

More Persona 5. This beauty went viral when I posted it on Twitter. Why? Look closely at the baby's head.

I blame this picture for the fact Otakon sold out of "GET SMOKED" hats before I could buy one. Congratulations Nadia, you played yourself.

Persona 5's Futaba was, uh, a popular cosplay choice. So much red. Like a sea of blood.

The "Otakon Simulator" guy returns every year with a new "box." Towards the end of the con, he slaps a Steam discount sticker on his costume.

The Happy Mask Salesman from The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask cursed me with a terrible fate: A blurry shot. Sorry.

My husband cosplayed as a Shyguy / Jason Voorhees mash-up (does that make him a Jason cosplayer-cosplayer?). Mario sure is a trusting fellow.

There's always a handful of remarkable Mega Man cosplayers at Otakon. This Shadow Man is nifty, and there was an incredible Sigma I unfortunately missed. A friend grabbed some video footage. They know what I'm about.

This was the only Night in the Woods cosplay I saw, but it's all I needed.

Phoenix Wright has been a strong cosplay choice since the first game's (English) release in 2005. Even though his popularity ebbs at times, the spiky-haired lawyer always comes raging back with a hearty "OBJECTION!", usually after a new game is released.

Undertale was a monstrously (hah) huge cosplay theme last year, and it was no slouch this year, either. At least the photoshoot was indoors this time; last year, some cosplayers suffered heatstroke. In one noteworthy instance, an onlooker asked a sweating Mettaton cosplayer if they needed a fan. Mettaton said, "Darling, I have plenty of fans!" before passing out.

It was funny, but also worrying. They were fine, though.

Other than Overwatch, Pokémon Sun and Moon was probably Otakon's #1 most popular cosplay this year. Specifically, Team Skull. So many Team Skull cosplayers. I'm not surprised; Team Skull is Pokémon's best-ever villain troupe. I appreciated every Team Skull cosplayer, but here's a shout-out to the folks who went out of their way to stand out – like these guys posing as Alola's bus stop thieves.

Final Fantasy always has a commanding presence at Otakon, and thanks to Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood, Red Mages were in fashion! I think this guy's feather fluttered off somewhere, though.

Look, I'm just really into Neko Atsume, all right? Mazel Tov on your cat-maid baby, Otakon attendee.

Here's Spark, Team Instinct's leader in Pokémon GO! By the way, people have asked me why I joke about Spark being an Arby's-scarfing stoner. This is why.

The current political and social climate probably has you believing there's nothing good or pure in the world any longer, so here's a gang of Final Fantasy VI cosplayers to lift your sagging spirits.

Finally: Another Team Skull throw-down, this time with a boombox-toting Ursaring. The text boxes say, "It's your berry-thief boys, back … back again!" and "Team Skull, represent! We can't pay the rent! Had a lot of fun, but our youth was misspent!"

Oh, Team Skull. Never stop being hilarious and tragic.

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