Zack from Dead or Alive 2: Hardcore

In Costume Photos
Reference Pics
Debut: Ani-Magic 2002
Awards: Metreon 2002 Festival of Animation - Second Place: Best Male Costume

Why Zack?

Well to be absolutly honest, this idea sort of started aftering seeing some amazing Japanese cosplayers do characters from DOA2 at AX02. They did fantastic costumes for Tina, Leifang and Kasumi and were in the hotel lobby posing for pictures for over an hour. I was gushing about how good they were in my Anime-Expo 2002 page.

Afterwards I was playing DOA2 with my friends and I saw the Zack costume. I've played the game before AX02 and always found his silver skin amusing. Me and my friends would refer to it as the "Tinky Winky" outfit. This reminded me of the Japanese cosplayers I saw at AX02. That's when I decided to try and do Zack in his silver costume. Boy, I didn't know what I was getting into...

Also, my friends know that I'm easily amused by shiny objects. I guess this is the ultimate expression of that! :D

I do hope that I'll be able to see those cosplayers again and hopefully get some group pictures. Unfortunatly, DOA2 is a rather old game and I hear DOA3 for the XBox hasn't been doing so well in Japan, so it may never happen. We'll see at next AX I guess.

How did I make Zack?

Unfortunatly, I don't know how to sew well enough to do a body suit, so I had to buy one. I eventually bought it from River's Edge Dancewear. They list the unitard under the "ultimate unitard" with an open face. You can then request the fabric to be the "silver metallic" for that reflective effect. There's literally little bits of glitter like things on the fabric. It's actually really sturdy and I don't notice any patches where the glitter has worn off, however I do tend to leave bits of glitter around where I sit or when I have a shoulder bag, glitter would be on the bag.

I then had to get similar silver fabric from Joann's. Unfortunatly, it's not the exact same color or texture, but it's good enough and most people don't notice it. With that fabric I made boot covers for rubber rain boots that I brought at REI. I was actually hoping to use snow boots, but I couldn't find them. I may redo the boots if I can find the proper snow boots.

Zack's antenna

My friend helped me do the boot covers, which is my first major sewing project other then doing minor hand sewing. This was the first thing I've ever actually made from scratch out of a peice of fabric. I was very excited! I then made a covering for the antenna. I wrapped a foam bendy toy with the fabric covering. I then attached a small purple Christmas ornament to the end and held it there with thread and some duct tape. I then attach the antenna to my head with velcro, that way I can detach it for washing. Eventaully I'd like to make the purple ball glow. But that'll be for later.

Zack's Chest Symbol Zack's Wrist Band

My friend helped me find the right neon green material at Britex Fabric in San Francisco. Since it's like wet suit material it doesn't fray. I cut out the shape of the symbol on Zack's chest and my friend helped me pin it on me while I'm wearing the suit. I could then later sew it down so that it doesn't go anywhere. I also made the wrist bands out of strips of the same neon green fabric.

Since it is a body hugging outfit, measures were nessessary to prevent me exposing myself to people. Not literally, but I didn't want the impression of my manhood showing through the unitard. So from the advice of some cosplay web sites, I got a dance belt to wear under the unitard. It does properly pad out everything so that nothing indecent is showing. The down side of it of course, is that the dance belt is a thong so it tends to accentuate my back-side. Oh boy, do I get hell for that later. :P

I have to say, getting into the suit is an amazing adventure in itself. It's one piece with the only opening for the face. There's two zippers one in the back and one for the head. For a while I needed a second person to zip me up. I later put a cell-phone strap into the zipper so I can close things up myself. The fit is actually ok, after a bit, it molds to your body and becomes quite comfortable. The dance belt doesn't bother me anymore either.

Other modifications that I've made include shortening the fingers. When the suit came, the fingers were about an inch longer then where my actual fingers ended. It makes it look weird and makes grabbing things very difficult. So I basically hand sewed the fingers to the proper length and cut off the excess bits.


Oh boy, were the reactions interesting. I debuted the costume at Ani-Magic 2002 and people actually recognized me! Someone told me that they had never seen anyone do Zack's silver outfit before. There was also someone who wanted my picture, and told me that his friend uses Zack's silver skin all the time. I met up with some other DOA cosplayers and they told me that they just couldn't believe someone cosplayed in Zack's silver skin. Hehe.

I got some other random reactions as well, from people yelling, "What the hell is that!" and getting lots of praise. A lot of the comments were people giving me props for even wearing that costume in public. I have to admit, it was very difficult at first to walk out of that Ani-Magic hotel room.

I also went to the Castro Halloween Street Fair this year (2002) with AJ and Tony. They were really great about having a tag long. AJ was dressed up as Ten from Batman Beyond and Tony was dressed up from King of Fighters. We all got some really cool reactions from people. Lots of people recognized AJ! Of course, I got hit on by a drag queen and there was a lot of cat calling from random places by men and women. Hehe. It was a very interesting experience.

It's definitely a fun costume and it did turn some heads.

During Katsucon 2003 we had a Dead or Alive Photoshoot which was just a lot of fun. We had a lot of characters from the game (Ayane, Bayman, Jann-Lee, Kasumi and Lei Fang) and some great pictures. It was a lot of fun!