The card game was created by the Pickett family – Lola, Tigre, and their kids, during the early months of COVID-19 quarantine in San Diego, California, after missing enough variety with the existing games in their collection. Ironically, the game became a welcome distraction when Tigre’s father and mother both fell victim to COVID-19. Fortunately, they’ve both since recovered, although Tigre’s dad required 17 days of ICU treatment and was initially not expected to survive.
The card game was designed and created with an intentionally diverse, all-virtual team of collaborators, including Germany-based artist, Sarai Sánchez and Logo Designer Meds Villafranca from the Philippines.
The game art was designed with inclusivity and equal representation in mind, approaching the virus with a playful tone – turning anti-bodies into superheroes and contagion into something you actually want in your hand. The gameplay is fast-paced and fun, with the goal being to end the game with the smallest stack of cards (named “viral load”) in order to win. As an added bonus, Power Cards bring what the creators call “infectiously fun twists of fate,” using all-too-familiar pandemic terms in playful ways, to shift gameplay and keep players engaged.
“We came up with It’s Contagious! to alleviate boredom and death-by-screen-time during quarantine, and it’s since become a welcome distraction and a coping mechanism after our family’s difficult encounter with COVID-19. We hope other families will be able to make light of this dark situation as much as possible,” said Tigre.
For his father, Rich (who was nearly taken out by COVID-19,) sense of humour has been paramount throughout this experience: “Hey, I’m glad I survived, so that I can join in on the laughter as my grandkids beat me (again) at this game!”
For more information on It’s Contagious! and how to pledge your support, please visit the Kickstarter campaign page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/menageriecollective/its-contagious-…
Lola and Tigre Pickett launched the creative project as part of The Menagerie Collective, their small company founded in San Diego. In 2018, they ran another successful Kickstarter campaign, with their Wild Messengers Tarot Deck and Guidebook raising over $30,000 in just 30 days.