In the internet era there are now many Hanafuda brands that are produced on a small scale. Most of the production is outsourced to larger firms, and the designs aren’t made by the themselves. Thanks to the rise of crowdfunding, the variety of designs has greatly expanded from the traditional patterns.
Blank’s Art Project have created several Hwatu decks with custom art: Pebble (2016), Golden Toad (2018 & 2019 editions, crowdfunded on Korean site ‘wadiz’), and Pebble Film Edition (2019). They have also created custom promotional decks for Jeju beer (2017).
Produces two different decks: Hanafuda Hawai‘i Style (2009), and Hanafuda Nā Pua Hawai‘i (2016).
Hanafuda Hawai‘i Style recreates the traditional Japanese deck with bold artwork, including scores printed on the cards and with helpful icons to identify scoring combinations on the cards. In the rules given with the deck, there are not “5 Brights”, so the “4 Brights” are reproduced here:
The cards of November show more of the style of the cards (note the ‘rain man’ is worth a mere 5 points with the Hawaiian rules):
Hanafuda Nā Pua Hawai‘i is probably my favourite of all the modern Hanafuda decks. It recontextualizes the game with the flora and fauna native to Hawai‘i, matching visual puns to the bold art of the Hawai‘i Style deck: in the month of March, for example, the cherry blossoms become ‘iliahi (sandalwood) flowers, and the curtain becomes the traditional kapa cloth.
Indianwolf have so far produced the Hanami Hanafuda (2018) and Sensu Hanafuda (2019) decks, in poker-sized cards printed by Legends Playing Card Company. Both of these are available in a plain version, or one that has indices to aid new players.
After another successful Kickstarter campaign, Indianwolf also produced the Night Parade deck (2020). The four cards of each month combine to form one wide tetraptych. The deck is themed upon traditional Japanese monsters (yōkai), and it also comes with rules for a new game called “Orochi”.
Jamaistore produces ridiculously-cute cat & dog themed hwatu decks. Each of them comes with an additional six joker cards, appropriate to the theme. Both decks were crowdfunded on the Korean site ‘tumblbug’.
Modern Hanafuda (2012) was one of the earliest Kickstarted Hanafuda decks. It was designed by Sarah Thomas, and the cards are decorated with bold flat colours and geometric patterns. The cards are larger and longer than normal playing cards.
This redesign by Hanako of estudio artes produced the only 3-way standard/Hanafuda/Kabufuda deck that I know of, which is printed on poker-sized cards. There is also a Hanafuda-only deck, in a traditional format.
Yongjaeng Hwatoo produce hwatu decks in three varieties: Classic, Cute, and Style (pictured below). These designs have been produced in several editions over the years.
Japanese paper design house Cochae produces Kokoyo (2019), a deck with bold, crisp visuals and faces on everything. The cards are coded by background colour so that Bright cards have a gold background, Tane have silver, etc.
Junior have produced a ground-up redesign of Hanafuda into a poker format deck, printed by USPCC. The first edition is called the Phoenix deck (2019). Each different type of Hanafuda card has a different background, and all are identified by suit marker indices, which helps to clarify the cards for new players.
To fill out the full 54 cards of a standard poker deck, there are an additional 6 ‘bamboo’ cards including an additional Fuji Bright and second Oni card:These were inspired by the extra cards of the Universal deck.
After the successful completion of a Kickstarter campaign in 2020, two more Junior decks are being produced: Dragon and Tiger.
Ryan Sartor has produced Pixel Hanafuda, which is currently available from The Game Crafter. The art is inspired by 8- & 16-bit video games, and the cards are designed with a 29×44 pixel grid. The full set includes two decks, one each with black and red borders, and an additional 12 cards with “palette-swapped” colours, as an homage to the artistic techniques of the era. These additional cards can be used to play or invent new games; the set also includes rules for three original games invented by Ryan.
Tetsufuda (鉄札, 2020) is a train-themed deck created by Kotsu Shimbunsha, the publishing arm of the Japan Railways group (JR).
Each month features a real train that runs on a JR line, and the cards show attributes or specialities of the different regions of Japan. The four cards of each month combine to form a tetraptych.
This deck was designed by Korean design firm Utmost, and was first crowdfunded on wadiz. The name is a reversal of the standard Korean name Hwatu (화투). There are several editions of the deck available — v2 (2018) and v3 (2020) (“v1” appears to have been a small or private printing) — and each features different art based on traditional Korean art styles. The cards are much larger than those in a standard deck, and are made of plastic like other Korean decks.