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Fabledom Review | Deserves A Happy Ever After

Value for Money
$ 21
Clear Time:
8 Hours
Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, there was a fairy-tale city-builder called Fabledom who had some of the most solid city-builder mechanics in all the land. It was a competent game with many innovations to boast, but it never overreached and made sure to put its best foot forward always. It wasn’t perfect, having bland music and missed opportunities with some of its ideas, but it was nonetheless worthy of a happy ever after. The End.

Fabledom is a cutesy fairy tale city-builder where you rule over peasants and woo royals from distant lands to create your very own happily ever after. Read our review to see what it did well, what it didn't do well, and if it's worth buying.

Fabledom Review Overview

What is Fabledom?


Fabledom is a grid-based fairy tale city builder featuring detailed fantasy aesthetics, a robust in-game economy of resources, and a uniquely modular approach to building construction. In addition to the game’s basic city-builder features, Fabledom also includes a minor social system between territory leaders, allowing the player to socialize, gift, declare wars, and even woo leaders from foreign lands.

Fabledom features:
 ⚫︎ Solid grid-based city-building mechanics
 ⚫︎ Various citizen types with their own social tiers
 ⚫︎ Random realm-wide events and sidequests
 ⚫︎ Fairy Tale-based hero exploration and combat system
 ⚫︎ Modular building design and customizable residential plots
 ⚫︎ Seasonal cycles and weather patterns

For more gameplay details, read everything we know about Fabledom's gameplay and story.

xxx Platform IconSteam $20.99

Fabledom Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
Checkmark Robust City-Builder Mechanics
Checkmark Fairy Tale Premise Executed Perfectly
Checkmark Quality of Life Heaven
Checkmark Absolutely Glacial Pacing
Checkmark Wonky Road Tool
Checkmark Hero Mechanics Feel Underdeveloped

Fabledom Overall Score - 80/100

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, there was a fairy-tale city-builder called Fabledom who had some of the most solid city-builder mechanics in all the land. It was a competent game with many innovations to boast, but it never overreached and made sure to put its best foot forward always. It wasn’t perfect, having bland music and missed opportunities with some of its ideas, but it was nonetheless worthy of a happy ever after. The End.

Fabledom Story - 7/10

Despite having its visual design and premise heavily based on fairy tale characters, the story of Fabledom isn’t anything worth noting. However, it does get points for having one at all. City-builders don’t often have the best opportunities to tell good stories, but Fabledom at least lets you live out the fairy tale ending your ruler desires. Gingerbread cookie-cutter of a story as far as fairy tales go, but is that so bad?

Fabledom Gameplay - 9/10

The cutesy vibes and vibrant colors may lead you to think otherwise, but Fabledom’s city-builder mechanics are among the most well-executed, well-connected, and well-designed I’ve seen. It heeded the cautionary tale of trying too hard and mostly stuck to the basics, only venturing out with a new idea if it could do it well.

Fabledom Visuals - 9/10

Fabledom’s storybook aesthetics are presented front and center, with most buildings looking like they burst out of an episode of Sofia the First. However, this stylization is tempered with a little bit of gritty realism, as seen with its muddy roads and ramshackle architecture. This makes for a unique visual style that’s neither derivative nor subversive of storybook designs.

Fabledom Audio - 7/10

Fabledom’s audio evokes the bardic tunes of the late-renaissance period—a time often attached to the stylings of fairy tale culture. While appropriate and well-performed, the singular track that plays during your hours of storybook city-building is simply insufficient.

Fabledom Value for Money - 8/10

$20 is the right ballpark for most city-builders and Fabledom hits the nail on the head with how much quality city-building content you’re getting. I’m inclined to think that the game’s glacial pacing somewhat inflates this value, but it is worth its price from the sheer quality of craftsmanship alone.

Fabledom Review: Deserving A Happy Ever After


I think it’s safe to assume that we’re all familiar with the classical storybook aesthetic; Knights in shining armor, rosy-cheeked princesses with conical hats and long hair, jolly kings with golden crowns, red dragons with fiery breaths, the works.

I’d love to say that Fabledom is a storybook simulator that lets you experience all that but, honestly, it’s just a really darn good city-builder that just so happened to have fairy tale stylings and I mean in the best way.


Once upon a time, city-builders all started to look the same with their modern buildings and strict adherence to grid-based city planning. There’s nothing bad about that per se, but when even the mechanics all started to feel too similar, novelty became the name of the game, sparking odd innovations designed purely to set this particular game apart.

Enter Fabledom, a city-builder that followed the formula but still managed to set itself apart. How? Well, we’ll get to how. For now, tuck yourself in and get comfortable. We’ll begin our story the way most fairy tales do, in a kingdom, far, far away…


Fabledom lets you build your own fairy tale kingdom from scratch. You start with a few citizens called "Fablings" and work your way from there, building homesteads and resource collection buildings to fuel your budding economy.

As you unlock new buildings whenever your population reaches a certain threshold, more options to move forward are presented to you, though the lack of a tech tree means that unlocks are more or less predictable.


The game operates on a strict grid-based system without diagonals for its buildings and roads, creating a city plan that could be confused for a modern city if it were not for the game’s unique aesthetics and mechanics.

Of these mechanics, the most prominent one would be the game’s modular building system (not its official name), which lets the player decide what accouterments go with each residential building. These add-ons can affect anything from appeal to food production initially, but things take a complicated turn when you unlock Townhomes, which let you design everything within a 3x3 foundation.


This offers a whole new level of complexity to the standard city-building format, allowing you to essentially tailor any group of buildings to any need. A whole residential area can be made self-sufficient or incredibly appealing simply by choosing your add-on structures carefully.

This modular configuration also extends to each building’s area, creating a variety of floor plans that prevent your city from looking like a chessboard despite its strict grid-based building system. Paired with the staggered expansion of your territory, your cities gain a natural expansion that defies what a grid could usually make.


Another of these unique mechanics is the hero system, which lets you find points of interest on the map and allow your hero to explore them. No good story is without its protagonist after all. Your hero levels up the more they explore, granting you new boons to your citizens and unlocking unique structures whenever they do. It even has an inventory system for all the fairy tale-related items you pick up along the way.

Honestly, I feel like the Hero could have been utilized more in this game. As it stands, it’s just a goon that you can send to find things and occasionally kill a famous fairy tale baddie. The hero is good for combat too, though costs a pretty penny to resurrect them. I’ll elaborate more on my gripes about the hero system later. For now, let’s talk about the rest of the game’s city-building.


Fabledom has some serious statistical and overview tools for a game about making a cute little fairy tale hamlet. It’s got everything a "serious" city-builder player needs, including a centralized menu for your city’s population, approval ratings, job assignments, production limits, and treasury.

It even has a way for you to track which building is consuming what, a means for you to find every citizen in real time, a way to track and project your gold expenditure, and most notably of all, a means to contact and delegate with other leaders. Yeah, this cute fairy tale game has political intrigue.


It’s not exactly Europa Universalis or Crusader Kings in terms of Byzantine political processes, but you can earn and lose favor with other leaders as you would in Sid Meier’s Civilization games. You can send gifts and well wishes if you so choose and, heck, you can even woo a princess or prince from a neighboring kingdom and get yourself a happy ending.

All that is basically what Fabledom is, a fairy tale story with zoning commissions and emissaries. It’s every bit the Sleeping Beauty or Cinderella story you expect it to be with its charming visuals and unique designs, but it’s also the minutiae of running city. It’s the parts of the story that aren’t being told, the beating heart behind the setting’s main narrative beats of saving princesses and vanquishing dragons.


I’m glad that Fabledom leaned into the fairy tale aspect, but not so much that it lost sight of what it’s supposed to be. It’s a city-builder first and a storybook second. Neither half suffers the shadow of the other and both facets get realistic and well-executed innovations to supplement their robust foundations.

Unfortunately, there’s no such thing as a perfect story. I’ve mentioned the missed opportunities with the game’s hero system, but the same could be said for the game’s actual narrative and music. The former falls into the narrative void that most city-builders fall into and the latter simply lacks variety.


Still, these flaws aren’t enough to unmake this game completely, not when it has so many other good things going for it. Call it a cliche, but I’ll end this review the only way a fairy tale should end.

And they all lived happily ever after. The End.

Pros of Fabledom

Things Fabledom Got Right
Checkmark Robust City-Builder Mechanics
Checkmark Fairy Tale Premise Executed Perfectly
Checkmark Quality of Life Heaven

Robust City-Builder Mechanics


City-builders are made and unmade by their mechanics. Aesthetics are well and good, but if your governance of a city does not prove to be at all satisfying, it’s a bad city-builder. Fabledom could’ve banked on its premise entirely and would’ve ended up a mediocre game.

Fortunately, it chose to dig into the basics of city-builders like grids, logistical tools, charts, and worker assignments BEFORE applying the storybook filter. This resulted in a game that had a good understanding of what makes city-builders tick and was supplemented, not supplanted, by its premise.

It’s this robust body of city-builder mechanics that allowed the game a surprisingly detailed breakdown of every aspect of your fairy tale city.

Fairy Tale Premise Executed Perfectly


Fabledom executed the fairy tale idea perfectly by tempering its whimsy with usability. The game could very well have veered into areas that made sense for a fairy tale but not for a city-builder, but it didn’t. It also could’ve gotten lost in the sauce of playability and shed the whimsical sheen of its premise altogether, yet it didn’t do that either.

The key is balance and knowing what could be storybook-ified and what should be left well enough alone. For example, the city-building is played completely straight, having no in-game lore on why you’re looking at line charts in the late Renaissance. Meanwhile, there’s a massive beanstalk growing in the middle of your city.

Quality of Life Heaven


To cap things off on Fabledom’s accolades, we have the game’s impressive suite of quality-of-life features. This includes a planning mode that lets you set buildings even if you can’t afford them yet, an upgrade tool that lets you paint over lower-tier roads and wells in a snap, and even a way to accept which kinds of new citizens get into your city based on what dwellings are available.

The game’s mechanics are as smooth as Rapunzel’s silken hair now but these extra quality-of-life features make it all the easier to play.

Cons of Fabledom

Things That Fabledom Can Improve
Checkmark Absolutely Glacial Pacing
Checkmark Wonky Road Tool
Checkmark Hero Mechanics Feel Underdeveloped

Absolutely Glacial Pacing


I’ll be fair, it is a city-builder, so I was never going to finish this in a reasonable amount of time. That being said, it took me nearly 4 hours just to unlock the Townhomes, which is the second tier of residential buildings in the game. I’d expect that very same tier to come around the 1-hour mark in any other city-builder.

It’s not a deal breaker by any stretch of the imagination, but it could alienate players who expect faster progression or those who simply don’t have the time to sink into this game.

Wonky Road Tool


It’s a bit of a nitpick, but the road tool in this game is a bit finicky with how you use it. It’s not like in Cities: Skylines where you just drag and draw on the grid line as you please. Here, you need to highlight the stretch of road where the path goes and click.

That’s not too bad, but it also has no confirmation step where you can confirm the road’s layout before it gets built. It also defaults to a continuous road-building mode that assumes I want to make corners even if I don’t want to.

Hero Mechanics Feel Underdeveloped


As I’ve mentioned earlier, I feel as if the Hero mechanic is a bit underdeveloped. Right now, the hero is a glorified explorer who mostly hangs around town. You’ll get an accumulation of places to visit at the start, but the hero takes no time to go over them and you’ll be getting one per territorial expansion, tops.

That happens once every couple of hours or so depending on your playstyle, which is way too slow to justify having the hero at all. The hero does more for combat scenarios, but that doesn’t get introduced until much later in the game, leaving you with a decked-out guy who does nothing 90% of the time.

Is Fabledom Worth It?

Definitely, Ask Your Fairy God Mother For a Copy


Fabledom offers a whole lot of fairy-tale city-builder goodness for just over $20. That’s a great ballpark price range for city builders in general but you’ll get more mileage from Fabledom in particular due to the sheer quality of its craftsmanship. It’s a happy ending for the twenty bucks, no promise of your first born necessary.

Platform Price
xxx Platform IconSteam $20.99

Fabledom FAQ

Does Fabledom Have Multiplayer?

No. According to the game’s developers, multiplayer is unlikely to ever be included in Fabledom due to them being a 2-person operation.

How Long Does it Take to Play Fabledom?

Although the exact time may vary between playthroughs, the game’s developers estimate that a full playthrough of Fabledom will take anywhere from 10 to 30 hours.

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Fabledom Product Information

Fabledom Cover
Release Date May 13, 2024
Developer Grenaa Games
Publisher Dear Villagers, Doyoyo Games
Supported Platforms PC (Steam)
Genre City-Builder, Strategy, Simulator
Number of Players 1
ESRB Rating RP
Official Website Fabledom Website


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