The first ever Overwatch League Mei Gala took place on Thursday (13 May), featuring cosplayers from around the world as their favourite characters.
With the Met Gala postponed this year until September, the Overwatch League stepped in to bring fashion and cosplay together in one event.
The virtual red carpet featured nine top cosplayers in their best Overwatch fashion.
They were judged by an esteemed panel, including principle character artist Paul Warzecha, Bustle deputy fashion editor Jessica Andrews and Drag Race royalty Jinkx Monsoon.
The event was hosted by Overwatch League host Soe Gschwind.
Said Jinkx Monsoon: “I’m very excited because I’m not just a drag queen, which is cosplay adjacent, but I’m also a big fan of Overwatch myself. I play daily and I main as Moira and I’m so excited to be a part of this.”
Warzecha in particular was able to give some interesting insight into the making of each iconic character during the judging, with Andrews and Monsoon offering views on the fashion and the craft.
Speaking to each cosplayer also revealed the process behind each look: the construction, the design, 3D printing and more.
The looks include AznProblems as the gala’s titular Mei complete with 3D printed Snowball robot; thecrayonthief as the game’s poster child and LGBT+ hero Tracer complete with Pride flag cape; and Zibartas as a gender-swapped Mercy with working wings.
Said thecrayonthief on their Tracer cosplay: “To me representation does matter. Growing up I’ve always played video games but never felt represented in a way. Sometimes we see representation but it’s not in a good light… I like that Tracer is part of the community but that’s not her thing, she’s a person, she has her own personality.
“She’s not a stereotype and I love that, because that’s, I feel like, what we need to see.”
Check out images below to see some of the exceptional looks from the virtual red carpet.
You can watch the full Mei Gala event on the video below.
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