Cosplay competitions have become a staple of MMO fan festivals, showcasing some extraordinary skill and creativity. Even so, the contest at the European leg of this year’s Final Fantasy XIV FanFest was especially challenging, as time became a crucial factor. Some creators drew inspiration from the recently released Shadowbringers trailer, giving themselves a few short months to build an outfit.
Even producer-director Naoki Yoshida got in on the act, dressing up in Thancred’s Gunbreaker outfit from the same video.
This FFXIV FanFest also saw the introduction of a Glamor Competition for in-game costumes, as we all know that fashion is the true MMO end-game. Titled ‘Eorzea Spring Collection 2019’, entries from far and wide were based on a light and fresh theme to welcome in the new year. It was great to see virtual fashions celebrated in this way, with the outfits even shown off on a virtual catwalk.
In the cosplay contest, entries were phenomenal. 30 finalists were chosen from a huge crowd of applicants at the Paris-based event, with the final decision left to a panel of judges. Naoki Yoshida, global community producer Toshio Murouchi, and character concept artist Ayumi Namae all chose a runner-up, with the winner being a joint decision between all three. At this level, competition was intense.
The three runners-up all showed immense talent, mastering both the costume and the presence of the characters they chose. Zenos Yae Galvus, Master Matoya, and the firebird mount (with over 400 LEDs used!) were all very strong contenders.
Even so, there could only be one winner. With only a limited amount of time to craft a costume, this Kuribu based on the Stormbringers teaser trailer was absolutely breathtaking. Not only that, but her stage pose was a perfect match for this formidable stone avatar.
However, we didn’t want to leave it there. Below are the remaining 26 finalists from the Paris 2018 FFXIV Cosplay Contest. Have a look at these incredible entries in this incredible gallery and let us know which ones you’d pick in the comments. Enjoy!