A promotion to take advantage of the open cafe space and stoke the excitement of fans
The popular manga known as Space Brothers has been being published since 2007 in Morning magazine by the manga publisher Kodansha. It’s a story about brotherly love. The older brother has decided to rededicate himself to his dream from childhood, with the support of his faithful younger brother. It’s also an enchanting tale that uses outer space as a backdrop for a deeply human drama. Space Brothers is a huge hit in Japanese, and has sold over 20 million copies.
The manga artist management company Cork, Inc. has united passionate fans using the popularity of Space Brothers. Yohei Sadoshima founded Cork, Inc. after working as an editor for Kodansha on many hit works.
Yohei Sadoshima came to FabCafe Tokyo with the suggestion: “I’d like to use the open space of a café to form a strong connection with the fan community.” With that, we worked together to create a friendly user experience that would allow fans to experience the atmosphere of the manga in real life.
The FabCafe X Space Brothers experience brought over 5,000 people into the café every month it has been held.
Create, eat, shop, play, watch, and enjoy a full experience that you can enjoy with multiple senses and will not be soon forgotten
1. Use of all kinds of fabrication machines to make original Space Brothers goods
During the campaign period, fans were able to experience making original Space Brothers goods while using a number of digital fabrication machines.
Fabs made tote bags using silk screen printing and stamps with the laser cutters. They made photo blocks with UV printers and a number of things with the 3D printers such as goods that were shaped like cookies. People of all ages and backgrounds were able to enjoy the process together as Space Brothers fans.
2. Sell exclusive Creator X Space Brothers items
A number of Space Brothers goods were produced and sold thanks to the creative network of FabCafe Tokyo and Space Brothers collaborators. Seven creator teams participated to make a number of limited edition items that could only be purchased during the campaign. The items were a popular topic between Space Brothers fans and creators.
3. Limited fan events and workshops
The fan community hosted reading events for the newly released chapters of Space Brothers. We also offered special workshops which allow fans to create something unique and limited to that particular workshop.
For example, the embroidery mission was a workshop that allows fans to make Space Brothers characters into embroidered goods. In the printing workshop, fans could make custom cards with their favorite characters. It was a day of fun conversation with fellow fans sitting all around you.
4. Apollo 11 X Space Brothers VR experience
In collaboration with Autodesk, we hosted an event to experience the world of Space Brothers through virtual reality. Autodesk, together with the Smithsonian museum has completely digitized the real Apollo 11 command module. The module was faithfully reproduced down to the scribbles and codes written on the walls by crew members. Messages were hidden among them for Space Brothers fans.
5. Taste Space Brothers food mentioned in the manga
In the café, we offered a menu that allowed fans to experience the manga through food. A number of items on the menu were faithfully reproduced from the show as well as being inspired by characters and space itself. During the campaign period, the Space Brothers originals menu became the most popular menu in the café.
6. Experience the atmosphere of Space Brothers from inside a café
During the event month, FabCafe proudly displayed Space Brothers everywhere. From the entrance display, the merchandise corner, the menu display, all the way to the book corner featuring the full run of Space Brothers. For those people that still haven’t heard of Space Brothers, we offer a welcoming introduction to the series.
7. Design & operate a special campaign website
A website was made for the campaign. It aims to allure people with the 2D characters from Space Brothers to the 3D location of FabCafe.
Attempting to offer something of value to the passionate fan community brought together by Cork, Inc. was a unique and challenging project.
We were able to offer unique events thanks to our specialty as a café that brings in many casual customers. Thanks to collaborations with creators and technology companies, we were able to create a space for fans to share experiences and projects in a fun and unique environment.
Thanks to Kodama and everyone at Cork, Inc. for coming together as a team and making a project that the fans were really looking for.
FabCafe Tokyo COO Toshimasa Kawai