9 Lives

9 Lives is the 2nd game I've published. This little pocket game of only 36 cards can be played with up to 6 players, takes 30 seconds to learn, and only 3 minutes to play.


To develop & publish a game that can be played with 2 - 6 people, is simple, and fits in your pocket.


Creating a game people would want to play is never easy, especially when it comes to a micro-game. How do I achieve that while keeping the card count to only 36?


Game Developer
Q&A Organizer

The Results

Positive Feedback

Early in the test playing process it was clear players were enjoying the game.


We started to receive pre-orders as soon as the first professional prototype was printed.


9 Lives can be purchased through our online store through The Game Crafter.

Project Details

Decision #1

Design, Playtest, Polish

Whenever I have an idea brewing in my mind, I first try to draw it out. This helps me to better understand what I’m trying to achieve.

Once I understood the concept for the game, I used playing cards to run play tests with friends.

Soon after that it was clear the mechanics of the game had no obvious holes so I proceeded to design a more polished version using Photoshop & Illustrator.

Decision #2

Deciding On A Theme

Originally the name of this game was “4 For 9.” Since 4 players, used 4 cards to reach the number 9 without going over. While the game was great it was the name that made it hard to market.

While monitoring a playtest group, I heard them joke that there was some sort of cat involved in the game and it had 9 lives and that’s why they needed to avoid losing.

It was then I realized I could easily incorporate some sort of cat theme into the game. It served as an easy way to explain the game’s core concept while providing a fun theme to engage with.


9 Lives has completed its test play phase and is currently being reviewed for publication. I hope to have the game fully available for sale in 2020.