Just before I continue with this article, I want to give out full disclosure: I was invited to be one of the judges at the event.

Now, with all that cleared up, I know there were question marks rising on top from some of the people in the crowd at the SM City Cebu Cosplay Carnival. Why didn’t the cosplayers with the best armors win?

Given that they’ve put much effort into their armor and time, one of the major factors in the event was the “Characterization” – meaning, they have to do their best to portray the characters they’re impersonating on-stage for the contest in which some failed tremendously.

Here are the criteria: 40% for Characterization, 40% for Accuracy/Craftsmanship, and 20% Audience Impact. The latter is more objective (in which I have to know if the audience reacted better to the cosplayer on-stage) than the 2 aforementioned categories which are more on the subjective views of the judges. There were 3 judges including me, I had my own favorites and they also had theirs.

It’s more than just an “armor”, it needs to have “personality”.

However, let’s put “characterization” aside, there were impressive cosplays at the event; displaying one of the best crafts there is!

Here are my 5 top picks from Cosplay Carnival.

5. Hellboy from Hellboy: The Science of Evil

Probably one of the most solid cosplay of Hellboy I’ve seen at a local event. The cosplayer managed to get the video-game sense of the character from Hellboy: The Science of Evil. What I like the most is the well-detailed craft of Hellboy’s Right Hand of Doom. Even if the cosplayer didn’t get to portray our red devil hero fully, the sleek design was impressive.

Cosplayer: Ron Sarsaba’s Daughter


4. Pulse Pilot from Titanfall 2

I’ve been a fan of the Titanfall franchise, but here’s a catch: there’s no bias. No. It’s merely because the accuracy of the Pulse Pilot from John Claude Basina’s cosplay is almost on-par to the Titanfall 2 actual 3D model. Scarfing up with the CAR submachine gun, the weapon and armor/helmet were made out of craft-foam. Impressive, isn’t it?

Cosplayer: John Claude Basina


3. The Red Queen from Alice Madness Returns

The menacing antagonist of Alice Madness Returns. By far, the most spectacular costume and portrayal of the character at Cosplay Carnival. Hitting the 3rd place among 50 cosplayers, Kurk Mage Tan had the most eye-catching character of them all.

Cosplayer: Kurk Tan


2. Junkrat from Overwatch

With the popularity of Overwatch, it’s apparent that there are a lot of cosplayers out there who are trying their best to craft the best Overwatch costumes. However, this Junkrat cosplayer had the best level of accuracy. I’m honestly disappointed that he didn’t get into the Top 5.

Cosplayer: Alan Vilarias


1. Spider-Man from Marvel Future Fight

No doubt, Spider-Man was the crowd’s favorite. With his daring moves and hilarious set on-stage, he didn’t just get the accuracy of his costume 100% but also Spidey’s sense of humor and childlike personality from the movie Spider-Man Homecoming. This version of Spider-Man is also in the iOS/Android game, Marvel Future Fight.

Cosplayer: Bardge Restauro

Hot Toys is considered to be one of the best toy manufacturers for its great level of accuracy.

If there were doubts why he got 1st place at Cosplay Carnival, let me take this stage to show you guys why. Let’s start with the level of accuracy (Craftsmanship/Accuracy = 40%), even if the craftsmanship was simple, you have to get the right accuracy of the character you’re cosplaying. With the picture above, you can see that the cosplayer got every inch of detail correctly.

Since “character personality” is part of the criteria (Characterization = 40%), the person behind the mask perfectly portrayed Peter Parker/Spider-Man. With the character’s wittiness and daring personality from the Spider-Man Homecoming movie, we certainly got our own friendly-neighborhood Spider-Man in Cebu.

Lastly, the audience impact. Spidey was the crowd’s favorite. Everyone went wild when he went on with his on-stage performance, even my co-judges were blown out with wonder. When he jumped from the stage and he took selfies with the crowd, he showed us that he was not our typical Cebuano local but he was the real Spidey himself.

As I said, it’s not the coolest armors and the best looking ones who gets to win. “Never judge a book by it’s cover“. Just like critiquing video-games, it’s not all about how visually stunning the game is. If your game doesn’t have that replay value and captivating gameplay mechanics, but it looks tremendously awesome, then it’s utterly lackluster.


There you have it guys! Who are your favorite cosplayers at the SM City Cebu Cosplay Carnival? Let us know down in the comments section!

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to Sirus Gaming as a whole.