As you grow as a lotus, your strategy will have to grow as well if you want to gain control of the pond. You’ll want to outwit your opponent and quickly become the best lotus around in this intricate, abstract 2-player game.

Can you plan ahead well enough to come out on top? Can you thrive long enough to be the lone survivor? It’s time to find out! Let’s check out Thrive!

What Is It?

A 2-player abstract strategy game where players build their movement possibilities throughout the game to plan ahead just enough to win over their opponent.

Players want to capture their opponent’s pieces (like in Chess/Checkers) to be the new controller of the pond!

Who Is It For?

I’d recommend this to lovers of classic abstract strategy games (again – like Chess/Checkers, or even Onitama or Hive), especially those who frequently play 2-player only games. If you’re into “thinky” games that really challenge your brain – this one’s for you!


I do have a prototype copy of the game, which is important to note, but overall the quality is pretty solid so far, so I can only imagine it will further improve in final production!

The cloth board is a nice quality, seems long lasting. The lotus pieces are 3D printed, so some of the holes are a little tight for the pegs, but it’s manageable. The pegs are very solid/sturdy quality overall, but the wood is a little uneven in some spots, so could use a bit of sanding; no major hiccups. Finally, the box is clearly handmade and thus a little thin/flimsy, but hold everything in nicely, so I’m sure the higher quality final box will be even better.


  • The cloth board is a very unique choice and I think definitely takes the aesthetic of the game up a notch
  • Overall, I think the gamer is aesthetically appealing and has a nice table presence
  • Solid game design/mechanics; everything works well together
  • The concept is easy to understand, but it really challenges your brain too because you do have to think ahead and plan out your future moves
  • Very different every time because you choose your move possibilities differently in each play


  • It’s an abstract game, so the theme doesn’t really add to the mechanics (but it did make for a cute background story and appealing colors/graphics)
  • Definitely on the harder side if you don’t have experience with or a mind for abstract games; the board is very tight and you really have to check all your options before making decisions
  • Very different every time because you choose your move possibilities differently in each play – yes, you saw this one previously above. I’d call it a pro for replayability, but a con because it definitely makes it harder to play a lot since there’s no “best strategy” or way to plan further ahead (until your opponents makes their moves). Depends on how you view it!


The bare bones of the concept is pretty simple and easy to grasp. However, because of the always-changing movement possibilities, I’d have to give it 5/5 for difficulty. It can leave you prone to analysis paralysis, constantly trying to outwit your opponent and avoid them claiming your pieces. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, at all! Just something to keep in mind before picking this one up.

Final Thoughts

Overall, I think it’s a pretty neat game, and while similar to classic “capture” games like Checkers or Chess, it brings a lot of uniqueness to that style of game with the cute board, fun theme, and variable movement.

The game is all about setting yourself up as much as possible for the most optimal moves and not getting trapped by your opponent.

If you like abstract games, I’d really recommend trying this one out because it does change things up a little bit and is a bunch of fun!

Happy Gaming~

Additional Information:
Designer – Martin Grider
Publisher – Adam’s Apples Games, LLC

*I was provided a prototype copy of this game to do this preview*
*All components shown are subject to change*

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