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AIE Breaks Guinness World Record

On May 5th, 2012 the Academy of Interactive Entertainment in Melbourne organised a Guinnes..

AIE Breaks Guinness World Record



On May 5th, 2012 the Academy of Interactive Entertainment in Melbourne organised a Guinness World Record attempt called COSGAME 2012 for “Largest Crowd Dressed as Video Game Characters” at Federation Square. This was a challenging event as there were hundreds of people to verify and take photos of, horrible weather throughout the entire day and a range of other hiccups after the event was over. Putting together all the evidence, forms, photos and paperwork required has been a year long process for Mark Libman the Event Coordinator. Last week the AIE Melbourne campus sent the evidence to Guinness Head Office in London to be officially recognized for this particular attempt. On May 5th, 2013 Guinness Officially approved and recognized the attempt of 470 participants. We sit down with Mark to have a chat about this great event, what it means to him and what will happen next.



What was it like putting together this record attempt and what was involved?

This was an amazing event to put together as I had a lot of flexibility thanks to AIE giving me the freedom and opportunity to make a lot of the decisions. We came up with the idea in February, 2012 and decided that May would be a good time to run the event. Initially it was supposed to be a simple dress up day for all of our Year 1 and 2 students. The idea then grew very quickly by thinking of ways to get family, friends and other students dressing up as well at the one location where we could collectively break a world record. After visiting the Guinness World Record website we discovered that there was a current world record that we thought would be appropriate for AIE to attempt to break.

I then contacted Guinness and completed some online forms to get their approval to make the record attempt itself. After Guinness gave us the go-ahead I had to very quickly organise a location at Federation Square. I decided to organize showbags for all the participants and have hundreds of dollars of items inside. This would be the main incentive to get the people of Melbourne to dress up and participate in the event. I managed to organise Games, Gift Vouchers, Codes, Discounts, Magazines, Comics and more valued at over $500. Companies such as Microsoft, Red Bull, Nova, Ubisoft, THQ Australia, GameTraders, MadMan and many more were happy to jump on board and help donate prizes as well as advertise the event online and in newsletters, for which we can't be more thankful!

On the day of the record attempt we had NOVA Radio station organize a dance off on the stage, Red Bull giving away sample drinks to people and random game give-aways. 



What did you enjoy most about the day?

I would have to say that I enjoyed seeing all the video footage and photos of everyone smiling. It was honestly amazing to see hundreds of people dressed as their favourite video game character having so much fun and interacting with each other. Even with the horrible rain against us everyone still had a great time. The Nova dance off would certainly be one of the highlights, it was great to see this one moment where a bunch of participants were on the stage dancing in front of everyone.


Why has it taken so long just to submit the evidence?

Unfortunately due to unforeseen circumstances I was unable to complete the required paperwork as per the guidelines required by Guinness. This was completely out of my hands and I spent many months trying to get everything required. Eventually I contacted Guinness and asked them for help and advice. They gave me permission to organize an affidavit from a Notary Public as a way to verify all the evidence. He had to view all the paperwork, videos, photos, registration forms and more.


Wouldn't any other major expo break this record?

Surprisingly No. For some reason a lot of people assume that this was an easy record to achieve and that expos like OzComicCon, Supanova, Armageddon etc. could achieve the same record in the thousands. Whilst they may have a great number of people dressed up in costumes, there are actually very specific guidelines that must be followed. For example, it takes 10 minutes to break a record, all participants must be in full costume in a closed off area and all the costumes must follow the rules of what a Video Game Character actually is.     


What did you learn from this experience?

At the end of the day I learned that the video games culture in Melbourne is very strong. There were so many people that thought this would be impossible for us to pull off and accomplish. Not only did we break the previous world record but we did it in the worst kind of weather conditions imaginable. It was great to see Melbourne come together and get involved.


Would you want to do this again?

Absolutely Yes! If Guinness informs me that someone else breaks this same record attempt then we will definitely organise it again. Although maybe sometime in the summer may work out better for everyone.


The current record for "Largest Crowd dressed as video games characters" is 470 participants and was achieved by The Academy of Interactive Entertainment (Australia) in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, on 5th May 2012.