Big Top Sans Letters in Japanese Font Ikaho2


I found a Japanese font called Ikaho2 that includes these big top Latin letters and numbers.
I don't know whether they are an original design or based on an existing font. I looked at Big Top Acrobat, Comedy, Dreamland, Showcard Gothic, Laff Riot NF, Startling and a couple of other Fun Fonts, but they are different. Any ideas?


A name is: IkahoAL from Maniackers Design by Masayuki Sato and Mami Kobatyashi.
(Do I get extra credit for finding your font, Don?)

Unfortunately, no credit for this one Dick. I already named it in my ID request. But you do have a clearer pic of the letters, which I appreciate.

That's what made it so easy to find.

I don’t think Maniakers Design create fonts based on an existing font.
BTW, it seems the font is included only in a book, Design Font Mania. You need to buy the book to use the font and can’t download it anywhere.

Thanks Akira & Dick. In the absence of any other comments I will put this alphabet in the original design category and credit Masayuki Sata and Mami Kobatyashi. Now for my probably presumptuous comment of the day: This font seems completely unknown outside Japan and will continue to be so as long as its sales are limited to purchasers of a book where most of the fonts are for Japanese use. If the designers want to make some sales to rest of the world they should consider releasing a the Latin letters version of IkahoAL as a stand alone font sold through one or more of the big resellers. In my opinion the design is very competitive with the other big top fun fonts mentioned in my ID request and could be a solid seller.

My pleasure.
To be precise, the designers are Masayuki Sato and Mami Kobayashi. Japanese names are difficult for those overseas.

Thanks Akira for the spelling correction. I wish both designers good fortune on their future work.

Don - Years ago I used to monitor many websites for new releases of free fonts - including several favororite Japanese websites like Maniackers and iAi (check out Kivart's font Punition - as well as the wallpapers and artwork).

Occasionally, on a site like Maniackers, I'd come across a font that I really liked but that was not free. Despite my willingness to pay and try as I might, I could never find any way to pay Western money for these fonts.

A decade later nothing seems to have changed. In this day and age that seems crazy. Do you know why this is, Akira? Why does Japan seem to be isolated from international sales of fonts?

Mike I totally share your frustration at Maniackers' bundling practice. Even more extreme than the problems with the Solo fonts bundled with the Dover alphabet books.
BTW many thanks for the Punition link. Unique design, Germanic blackletter as if it were reinterpreted by an Arabic calligrapher!

The reason might be that a lot of Japanese don’t speak English well. But, I’m not sure.

Anyway, I don’t recommend Latin fonts Japanese designers designed. Most of them are low-quality.
Akira Kobayashi who is a Monotype Type Director, Kunihiko Okano who graduated from KABK, and Toshi Omagari who graduated from Reading and works for Monotype UK are, of course, brilliant exceptions. They are great designers.
And some of the younger designers create high-quality Latin typefaces. (Two Japanese are studying at Reading MA Typeface Design now.)

I’d say Morisawa and Fontworks, two largest type foundries in Japan, don’t sell their fonts to overseas people. I don’t know why.
Several Japanese foundries, e.g. Jiyu Kobo, Iwata, TypeProject and Motoya, sell thier fonts at

Thanks Akira for the guidance notes. I will keep them on my sources & designers file.