Splicer - Bioshock

Cost: $70
Time to Make: 15 hours
Timeline of Construction: March - May 2012



I first played BioShock in 2009 and I really enjoyed the game. I though the gameplay was fun and I loved the underwater and 1950s aesthetic. For the longest time I wanted to Cosplay a Little Sister, but I never found fabric that I liked to make the dress so I put the idea aside. Fast forward to Con-G 2012 when my friend Chris surprised all of my friends, including me, by making a Splicer costume. He suggested the idea of doing a big Splicer group for AN 2012 and I happily joined in on the idea.

Several of my friends decided to join the group and we decided to Cosplay the Splicers by following the 1950s formal wear fashion trends instead of Cosplaying specific game character models. I decided to roughly follow the dress style of the Baby Jane character from the first BioShock game. My dress isnít really that much like Baby Janeís, but the collar shape and bodice are similar. For the costume, since we were doing it more for fun, we all decided to buy second-hand clothing as opposed to making things from scratch.

I originally bought a long white dress with a black bodice to use for the costume, which I purchased at a Value Village, but my friends all agreed that the dress was too pretty to destroy for the costume. No idea what to do with it now, but I had to agree. XD Instead I searched on eBay and ordered a blue dress from a UK seller. It still had a similar bodice and neckline as Baby Janeís and it seemed like the sizing would work for me. I ended up paying nearly twice as much as my original dress to get the new one, but when it arrived it definitely wasnít as nice as my original dress so I wouldnít have to worry about thinking it was too nice to ruin. XD

My ďnewĒ blue dress turned out to be a little too big for me so I opened the lining and adjusted the bust seams and 2 back seams. It was still a little too big so I pinned and sewed a little more in the back. It was really annoying to try to adjust this dress and the fix didnít look as nice as I would have liked. Next time I need a dress with a bodice like this, I'll get it locally where I can try it on before I buy it.

Once the dress sort of fit me, it was time to destroy it! I decided to tea and coffee stain the very bottom of the dress to try to imitate the dress being worn in damp, dirty environments with it touching the floor. The dress didnít take to the staining very well. The fabric just didnít pick up the stains, although it did gain a bit of a greenish hint with some minor staining around the bottom. I also decided to stain the dress with fake blood. I applied the blood using a paintbrush as well as dabbing and flicking at the dress with a painting stick to create blood streaks. I also applied a bit of real dirt and brown acrylic paint to make slightly brighter dirt spots. Since my dress was a somewhat dark shade of blue, stains needed to be bright to show up so I added a few dots of red acrylic paint to act as bright fresh bloodstains. Our family dog was even ďkind enoughĒ to grab my dress while it was drying outside and dragged it across the lawn. XD Itís nice when the whole family pitches in to help with a project!

Baby Janeís dress is very ripped in the game and I didnít feel like cutting my dress as high as hers, but I did cut up the hem of my dress and rip the dress in several places at the hem and around the collar. I was hesitant to cut into the bodice or higher on the skirt of the dress, though, but I think overall the effect worked for what I wanted.

The other major component of the costume was the mask. I debated for a little while about what sort of mask I wanted and I finally settled on making a cat mask because I loved the shape. I purchased plasticine, clay mache and plaster wrap to make a mask by hand like when I made my ANBU mask years ago. My friend Adrien mentioned that one of his roommates had made a Splicer costume, however, and had a plastic cat mask that she didnít need any more and she let me have it. I had to remove glitter and some trim from the mask, but it was a perfect base once it was sanded. Adrien helped me break up the mask a bit especially on an ear to imitate battle damage.

Adrien and I then primed and spray painted the mask. I picked to paint it black instead of white because I found a really neat concept sketch of the cat mask that was black with gold detail. I used clay mache to add the design details to the mask around the eyes, the cheeks and to act as a border. It was kind of hard to shape and apply the mache so some of the details are bit cracked or lumpy, but Iím overall happy with the design. When it was dry, I painted a base coat of gold paint over the details and I finished it off by applying gold leaf over the designs to make them stand out more. It was Adrienís idea to use gold leaf and I love the results! The final touch for the mask was adding 2 black pipe cleaners on either side of the mask for whiskers and I attached black elastic so the mask would stay securely on my face.

I completed the look with dark navy pumps that I purchased with my original dress at a thrift store and I bought black fishnet stockings to wear with the costume which I ripped in spots. For a wig, I decided to go with a black bob as modelled by the Baby Jane character to match the era. I used eyeshadows on my skin to imitate bruises and dirt and some fake skin and fake blood for cuts. I used a fake gun as my weapon prop and I also used a prop replica of the Eve Hypo, which I bought online a couple of years ago, as a costume accessory. It was so much fun to Cosplay with! Iím really happy with the look that I came up with for this costume.

The group was a blast to be a part of. We really were quite a sight when we all assembled and we succeeded in creeping out and entertaining a lot of people. XD Iím really happy to have Cosplayed a Splicer given how long Iíve liked BioShock. I appreciate that my friend suggested that we form this group!

Events/Conventions this costume was worn to
Anime North 2012 (Sunday)

Photo Credits
Elemental & SolarTempest