Hon-Bana - 本花 [ほんばな] is a Hana-Awase variant originating in the Nagoya region of Japan. It is described in a 1927 Department of Justice document as being the most typical hana-awase game of the region. As with other games from Nagoya, it uses an alternate suit ordering from what is typically considered standard today, along with a different distribution of card points compared to popular games like Hachi-Hachi and Mushi. It is most often played with 3 participants; as such, this page describes the 3-player version of the game.
First, prepare the deck by removing the three Paulownia Chaff from a standard hanafuda deck, leaving a 45-card deck. Then, choose the first dealer by whatever method the players prefer. (In subsequent games, the dealer is the player who scored the greatest number of card points). If the game is to be played for money, determine collectively what each Point is worth.
The dealer shuffles the deck, and places it before the player to their left, who then cuts the deck and returns it to the dealer.
Then, the dealer places three cards face-up on the field, followed by four face-down stacks of three cards each in front of him/herself, and then another two face-down stacks of three cards each in front of those. Next, the dealer places three more cards face-up on the field, and adds three more cards to each of the six face-down stacks. Finally, the dealer places the final three cards of the deck face-up on the field.
At this point, there should be nine cards on the field, along with six stacks of six cards each. Each player takes the two stacks closest to themselves, and chooses one of them to become their hand. The stacks not selected return to the play area to form the draw pile.
With 9 cards on the field, 6 cards in each player’s hand, and 18 cards in the draw pile, the round is ready to begin.
Gameplay proceeds in much the same manner as other fishing games, with the dealer going first. On your turn, add one card from your hand to the field, followed by the top card of the draw pile, matching each of them with a card on the field if possible. If a pair is made, capture those cards and add them to your scoring area.
Play then continues counter-clockwise around the table, with each player repeating the above steps in turn, until all cards have been played.
Note that since the Phoenix is the only Paulownia card used, the player who plays or draws this card simply places it directly to their own scoring area without first sending it to the field. If it is dealt to the field at the beginning of the game, the dealer automatically captures it.
At the end of the round, the draw pile, field, and hands should all have been exhausted, and all cards have been captured. The scoring process has two steps.
First, each player sums the values of their captured cards according to the below chart. The player with the most card points collects 2 Points from each other player, and becomes the dealer for the next round.
Second, each player checks for yaku, according the chart further down the page, and collects Points from each other playing accordingly. However, if any player has made the Imperial Messenger or Four Brights yaku, any yaku made by other non-dealer players is negated. If the Imperial Messenger and Four Brights yaku are each made by a different player, whichever was captured first will negate the second.
Once all calculations have been completed, money changes hands according to the Points scored, and if desired, players prepare for the next round.
Thus, there are a total of 300 card points per round.
|Point Value||Name of Yaku||Composition|
松島 [まつしま, matsushima]
|1||Four Cherry Blossoms
桜島 [さくらしま, sakurashima]
|1||Four Plum Blossoms
梅島 [うめしま, umeshima]
一杯呑 [いっぱいのみ, ippai nomi]
|and one 30-point card.|
二杯呑 [にはいのみ, nihai nomi]
|and two (or more) 30-point cards.|
表御老中 [おもてごろうじゅう, omote gorōjū]
裏御老中 [うらごろうじゅう, ura gorōjū]
|3||Front Three Brights
表三光 [おもてさんこ, omote sanko]
|3||Back Three Brights
裏三光 [うらさんこ, ura sanko]
勅使 [ちょくし, chokushi]
四光 [しこ, shiko]
Tobaku Ni Kansuru Chōsa. vol. 121, Shihōshō Chōsaka, 1927, National Diet Library, dl.ndl.go.jp/info:ndljp/pid/1269696. pp. 8-13, 62-64.