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10 Quirky Photos of Japan’s Insane Cosplay Festival

Halloween eat your heart out! The crazy costumes at Osaka’s Nippombashi Street Festa—Osaka’s biggest cosplay event—are seriously out of this world.

At Osaka’s Nippombashi Street Festa, you can meet a real-life Pikachu, Super Mario, or just about any other anime, manga, or video-game character you could think of. Bringing together over 200,000 fans and 10,000 cosplayers each year, anime and manga lovers celebrate their nerdy streak as they take over the streets of Den Den Town (electric town) in their elaborate costumes, portraying their favorite characters with uncanny accuracy. The otaku (anime and gaming nerd) army come out to play on this day, photographing posing heroes and heroines like a hungry gang of paparazzi (you’ll never see so much expensive camera equipment in one place!). Roaming the streets of Nippombashi during this event is one of the most surreal, only-in-Japan experiences you can have.

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A mimic from the video game Dark Souls terrorizes unsuspecting treasure seekers.

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Cosplayers strut their stuff in the Nippombashi Street Festa Parade that stretches all the way down Sakai-suji Street, which is closed to traffic for the big event.

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One of the best parts of the festival is meeting all the pet dogs wearing adorable pooch-sized costumes! This pug is dressed as Sailor Moon.

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Batman’s archnemesis the Joker with his main squeeze Harley Quinn.

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Pretty in pink: a cosplayer strikes a pose for her adoring fans.

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Heihachi–the original big boss from the Tekken video-game series–flexes his muscles for the crowd.

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Many cosplayers spend the entire year perfecting their outfits for the Nippombashi Street Festa. When it comes to makeup, props, and accessories, no detail is overlooked.

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A furry four-legged friend struts his stuff along Sakai-suji street in a slick tiger-print jumpsuit (like a boss).

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The Stormtroopers capture Chewbacca and take him away.

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Doc from Back to the Future sitting in the DeLorean time machine.

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