BoxplayS

Yes, I'm aware I said I wouldn't go back to the cosplay crutch so soon. Then that thing appeared at Fan Expo a couple weeks back. An anthropomorphic box cover? We can't let that one go stale. Fire up your Photoshop, GIMP, or whatever you use and meet us inside!

We're never at a loss for creative entries, so I'll let you freelance this one, and go with whatever comes to mind. But if you need guidance, we have two shots of this gentleman cosplaying as a Call of Duty: Black Ops box below. We also have cosplay galleries featuring plenty of video game characters at Comic-Con (more here, and here) at Gamescom and PAX (more here), should you think of another game box that deserves this treatment. Callbacks to other 'Shop Contest subjects, like the Half-Life 3 protest guys or the Nintendo 3DS pro wrestler are fair game. All I ask is, for those of you inevitably thinking of Catherine, please keep it clean (i.e. non-porny.)

Alternatively, you could put Blops Box Boy into some other humorous setting, swap his face, swap the box, go to town. Again, the key ingredients here are high fructose funny and partially hydrogenated irony.

Source Image: Black Ops Box Cosplay at Fan Expo 2011, by Dannychoo via Flickr.

Source Image: Alternate view, Black Ops Box Cosplay at Fan Expo 2011. Seen via Agent M Loves Tacos.

You know the rules: The 20 best will get rounded up and published at the end of next Saturday. Meantime, I and the rest of the starred commentariat will approve and promote as many as we can so folks can see them and pass judgment.

This is your no-frills step-by-step procedure to participation in the Kotaku 'Shop Contest.

1. Create your 'Shop.
2. Upload it to a free image hosting service. I suggest imgur. It's stupid simple. No account is necessary.
3. This is very important: You must use the URL of the image itself. In imgur, this is the second URL it gives you after you upload the image. It's under "Direct Link (email & IM)"
4. At the beginning of the comments roll, click "Start a New Thread"
5. To the right of your name, select "Image."
6. Paste the imgur URL in the image URL field. It's the field that says "Image URL."
7. You can add editorial commentary if you want, but then just hit submit and your image will load. If it doesn't, paste the image URL as a comment.
8. This is important: Keep your image size under 1 MB. It will not upload to comments if it is over that size. What's more, we're getting reports that if your 'Shop is more than 1000px tall (vertical), it won't upload. If you're getting the broken-image icon, try resizing to a smaller dimension.

As an added inducement, I want to let you know I do star commenters who send in worthy/funny submissions - whether or not they're chosen for the final 20. This may not happen immediately. I usually start rounding up a gallery by the middle of the week. This is my subjective call, but I do want to recognize as many contributors as possible, and show gratitude for making this such a popular feature on weekends.

Now, Gentlemen, start your 'shopping!


You can contact Owen Good, the author of this post, at owen@kotaku.com. You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook, and lurking around our #tips page.