Whether we grew up with the original Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, or PlayStation 2, for many of us, playing video games was a large part of our leisure time and escapism as we grew up and well into our adult years. With so many genres, platforms, and price points, video games have never been more accessible to creators and consumers, with countless games released each year (many of which are created by independent, or indie, developers!)
The video gaming industry is only getting bigger and bigger, with some able to gross half a billion (that’s billion with a B!) dollars just on their first day on sale! As a result, countless people have been inspired to create impossibly gorgeous cosplays!
For those of you who don’t know, cosplay (short for costume play) is when fans are driven to create phenomenal costumes of their favorite characters, and it’s become the highlight of any convention! Some fans go well above and beyond, crafting cosplays that defy logic, whether it be because of a character’s absurd scale or proportions.
Here at TheGamer, we’ve scoured the web to find professionals and amateurs alike that were able to pull off the most outrageously impossible video game cosplays from a wide variety of fandoms, including Portal, Borderlands, and Overwatch!
In our list of 15 cosplays that seem impossible, including everything from massive communism-hating robots to holographic narcissists, which one is your favorite? Be sure to let us know down below in the comments!
15 Frostbite Cosplay's Reinhart
Blizzard's Overwatch is one of the biggest hero shooters right now and is known for its larger than life characters (which turns out to be quite large in Reinhart’s case)! Reinhart is the definition of the word “tank,” wearing a massive suit of armor would be quite the daunting task for any cosplayer, but Frostbite Cosplay was up to the challenge when they made their very own costume earlier this year! Along with their other Overwatch cosplay, Mei, Frostbite Cosplay was able to win the Best in Show award at Fan Expo Dallas earlier this year. We can all thank Fili’s Photography for the gorgeous photo of Frostbite Cosplay and a Bastion. Be sure to catch them at the Fan Expo Dallas Fallout Meetup next April!
14 The Brother's Cosplay's Liberty Prime
Anyone who has played through Fallout 3’s add-on Broken Steel or its sequel, Fallout 4, should know about the towering communism-hating robot, Liberty Prime. Originally designed to fight the Chinese army invading Alaska in the fictional Sino-American War of 2072, in the nuclear wasteland it acts as the Brotherhood of Steel’s ultimate weapon and The Brothers Cosplay’s inspiration for one of the coolest cosplays we’ve ever seen! @eetherbiail did a fantastic job taking the photo to emphasize the sheer scale of the suit. These two brothers from Maryland have made appearances at many conventions and other events, so be sure to check out their attempt at a world record for the largest gathering of wizards at The Official Wizard Party at MAGFest 2018 this January.
13 Oz Cosplayer's Big Daddy
You could be forgiven for thinking that the Big Daddy in that photo was part of the fantastic edit by Spartan Jenzii, but the fully functional suit by Oz Cosplayers features lights that change between green and red as well as a working drill. For those who don’t know, the Big Daddys were some of the most fearsome enemies in 2K Games' BioShock. They were originally called Protectors because they were conditioned to defend the Little Sisters and escort them around the city of Rapture. Oz Cosplayers perfectly capture the dramatic size difference between the characters with their massive Big Daddy paired with the adorable Little Sister. While their Facebook page says that they are dedicated to the BioShock duo, it also cryptically states, “oz cosplayers will be bringing out something New and Big and Awesome.” We’re excited to see what comes next!
12 GuzzardiArt's Thane and Garrus
GuzzardiArt & Cosplay combined their fantastic cosplay and photo editing skills to create these gorgeous edits of their Thane and Garrus cosplays. If you’ve played through the Mass Effect series (ignoring the latest installment), you’re familiar with two memorable squadmates. Thane Krios was an assassin that enjoyed getting close to his targets, praying before and after each mission. Following the outlaw theme, Garrus Vakarian was a member of the Citadel’s Security Services before going rogue. The identical twins from Australia have brought these characters to life with their amazing costumes. Since then, GuzzardiArt & Cosplay has astonished fans with their flawless cosplays of everything from Overwatch’s Mercy and Junkrat to Life is Strange’s Max and Chloe, and even covering Devil May Cry’s Virgil and Dante!
11 Tipsy Critic's Alice Angel
The Meatly’s Bendy and the Ink Machine has grown in popularity with its third chapter releasing in the past few months. After the buildup she received in the second chapter, fans may have been expecting Alice to be a cute and charming angel; what we got instead was a demoness with half of her face melting off. Alice isn’t the most sympathetic character as she threatens to murder your companion (again) before sending you on what may be the longest series of fetch quests. TipsyCritic has transformed herself into Alice to create a haunting resemblance to the murderous demon, fitting with her established history of cosplaying as less than cordial characters like her earlier renditions of Welcome to Nightvale’s Kevin and Reverse Falls’ Mabel Gleeful. Be sure to stay up to date to see her next cosplay, the Altean Princess Allura from Voltron!
10 Psykitten, Eikomomo_, And VapourChillMusic's Cuphead, Mugman, And King Dice
While we are no stranger to people humanizing characters, we rarely see it in cosplay and almost never done as well as Psykitten, Eikomomo_, and VapourChillMusic as Cuphead, Mugman, and King Dice! For those who don’t know, Cuphead is a platformer and boss rush that has been praised (and criticized) for its difficulty and early animation-inspired art style. It tells the story of two cups who play gamble at the devil’s casino until they lose a bet and have to give up their souls or collect on the devil’s list of debtors. The debtors serve as the game’s unique and inspired bosses! Each member of the trio has a history of creating fantastic cosplays of characters from tons of different anime and video games like Evangelion and Overwatch!
9 Skai_Cosplay's Isaac Clarke
Despite what people are saying about Electronic Arts now, in 2008, they launched a series that would terrify fans for years to come, Dead Space (to the point that it may have saved the horror genre on consoles!). Anyone who’s played the game remembers the first time they were attacked by an enemy that they had thought was dead. A series with all of the hidden secrets, creative monsters, and engrossing plot of Dead Space (and its sequels) was bound to inspire cosplayers despite the sleek design of the suit. Skai_Cosplay was able to craft his suit to the precision of the original game as we can see in the photos taken by Kolbaya. We can see this precision with his cosplays of Overwatch’s Reaper and, more recently, World of Warcraft’s Kalecgos.
8 Shadow Circus Cosplay's Eve
The Binding of Isaac was a macabre, but exciting take on the dungeon system from the early Zelda games. It combined the camera angle and design of the dungeons with a unique art style, biblical themes, and procedural generation. Going along with such themes, one unlockable character is Eve, carrying the title “Whore of Babylon.” Many cosplayers may be deterred by the idea of humanizing a character that isn’t even 40 pixels tall, but Shadow Circus Cosplay was able to create her Eve outfit utilizing an analogous color scheme and including multiple props from the game. While a cosplay may be complicated because a character is too complex, it may be equally difficult if the source material is too simple. This didn’t stop Shadow Circus Cosplay from making a phenomenal cosplay!
7 The Ronin Cosplay's Kratos
In 2005, God of War introduced Kratos, The Ghost of Sparta and successor to Ares. The beat ‘em up notably allowed players to tear apart the Greek Parthenon with epic Shadow of the Colossus style fight scenes, eventually usurping them. While the character’s body is simple, the meticulous detail in the makeup and props make this a remarkable build nonetheless. Anthony James Beull, also known as The Ronin Cosplay, dons several layers of clothes adorned with intricate patterns over his precise red and white body paint. His props include an ax etched with exact glyphs and a large shield with low scales between high relief spokes. With every detail in place, Gil Photography flawlessly emphasized the bright makeup with the dark background.
6 Red Reaper Cosplay's Clicker
The recipient of multiple Best Game awards and adaptations, many fans praise The Last of Us as being a surprisingly realistic take on the zombie genre. The fungus-based design of The Infected gave birth to The Clicker, the 3rd and most iconic stage of the infection. The monster had to revert to echolocation due to its blindness, creating the haunting clicking sound from which they get their name. While the outfit is simply tattered clothes, the head has to look realistic, which wouldn’t be an easy task on this scale. This didn’t scare off Red Reaper Cosplay from creating a gorgeous Clicker cosplay that they paired with a nurse from Silent Hill at PAX. While unexpected, the style of the two characters blends remarkably well! With the help of Emily Ott, they were able to showcase the fantastic costumes. Be sure to check them out at SupaNova Melbourne!
5 Derpkind's Holojack
The antagonist of Borderlands 2 charmed us with his over-exuberance and wit that bordered on psychotic. Doing everything from buying a literal diamond horse and naming it “Butt Stallion” to spite the player to returning as what is effectively a holographic Tyler Durden in the spin-off, Handsome Jack may be one of the most memorable video game baddies. In the TellTale spin-off, Tales from the Borderlands, players meet the holographic AI made to be Jack’s successor, Holojack. Through one of the character’s cybernetic implants, Jack is able to have some influence over the world in his attempt to return to his role as president of his company. Derpkind was able to capture the intricate makeup and photo editing work to achieve the holographic, almost cel-shaded look of the hologram.
4 Gingersnap Cosplay's Pyramid Head
Whether you had first heard him called “Red Pyramid Thing,” “Red Pyramid,” or most commonly, “Pyramid Head,” almost every survival horror fan is familiar with Silent Hill 2’s juggernaut antagonist. While we can go on and on about the grander implications of the symbolism, we can all agree that this would be a rather meticulous build. Despite the relatively simple outfit (basically just a torn skirt), Pyramid Head’s massive helmet and weapon make this an intimidating task for a build. Even if a cosplayer manages to create the prop and helmet, they would be hard-pressed to be able to capture the dark surrealism of the game. With the help of Twisted Cosplay’s nurse and Food and Cosplay’s camera, Gingersnap Cosplay was able to create haunting images pulled straight from the early PS2 title.
3 Maddy Cat Cosplay's Pharah
Like the Reinhart mentioned above, Overwatch’s Pharah has an impressively complex set of armor, her Raptorion Systems, complete with a jetpack. The sheer mass of the suit and weaponry would be daunting for any cosplayer, but Maddy Cat Cosplay has done an unbelievable job perfecting every detail of the character, even down to her eye of Horus makeup, captured by Eurobeat Kasumi Ebk. She wore the Raptorion Systems, to BlizzCon after cosplaying as other Overwatch characters like D.Va and Mercy. If you don’t understand how complex of a build this was, check out Maddy Cat Cosplay’s YouTube channel where she is in the process of documenting her making the entire suit! Be sure to check out her pages to stay tuned for more of her work!
2 BonnieBandit_'s Nick Valentine
One of the most memorable companions from Fallout 4 was the Gen 1 synth, Nick Valentine. Nick had a unique perspective on the story as the first synth implanted with another person’s memories.The noir-inspired private investigator is crucial to the main quest of the game, so almost every player has come across him, but if players finished the story, they could learn about the extensive backstory of both Nick and his brother, DiMA. Most cosplayers would be put off by the project of cosplaying him as a result of his torn skin and inhuman appearance. This wasn’t the case for BonnieBandit_ who flawlessly emulated his rough, yet mechanical look. Globalcosplayaus helped bring the character to life with their gritty photos. Aside from Fallout 4, BonnieBandit_ has cosplayed characters from Borderlands, BioShock, and other first-person shooters.
1 Enayla's GLaDOS
Finishing off our list is a fantastic rendition of Portal’s GLaDOS. The robotic antagonist of Portal hangs from the ceiling, often taunting the player with threatening, but witty quips. The charming, if not homicidal, robot inspired Enayla to create one of the most complex costumes we’ve ever seen. A common obstacle for cosplayers is dealing with character designs that are abnormally large, but not many have to grapple with the inhuman proportions of GLaDOS. The costume consists of a helmet with a light and two body pieces that are entirely suspended. With the help of Darkain Multimedia, Enayla was able to show off her hauntingly gorgeous cosplay. You can see Enayla’s excellent craftsmanship in her other works like Guild Wars 2’s Asura and Golem. Be sure to check out her page for her next cosplays!