Japanese Hanafuda Flower CardsHawaii Hanafuda – Sakura
Hanafuda cards are approximately 2.5 x 3.5 inches in size. Half the size of traditional american playing cards, but are of very heavy stock, thicker than a credit card. There are many types of games than can be played with hanafuda cards. Each similar to matching suits, but with different strategies and styles.
Card games played with a standard numbered deck were banned throughout Japan as the government deemed multiple aspects of Western culture illegal. Japanese people developed an alternative to playing cards called Hanafuda; they played in secret.
When the card game ban was lifted in the late 1800’s an avid hanafuda player named Fusajiro Yamauchi, was thrilled to be able to play the game legally. In 1889 he stared up a company that would print & distribute high quality hanafuda cards. That company’s name was Nintendo.