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Strategy games and City Builders are seeing a revival in the indie format, with new changes to spice up the genre. The genre is receiving a big boost with the launch of Age of Mythology: Retold in September by Microsoft. 2024 has already seen one of the biggest launch in the form of Manor Lords, which adds strategic depth to the otherwise chill city-building genre. Another upcoming game with huge promise is Frostpunk 2, the sequel to the game that revolutionized strategic city-building as we know it (with the post-apocalyptic theme being an added bonus). Bulwark: Falconeer Chronicles is yet another successful second entry that changes the formula of the original game yet keeps it fresh. We have ourselves thought that the game, “tries to carve its own niche with in-depth world-building and a post-apocalyptic theme that blends very well with its various elements”. Another promising new indie entry in the otherwise dying genre is Fabledom, where you build and manage a fairytale village.

Fabledom is an indie strategy city-building simulation developed by Grenaa Games and published by Dear Villager and Doyoyo Games

Fabledom is a city-building strategy game developed by Grenaa Games and published by Dear Villager and Doyoyo Games. Fabledom was released on May 13, 2024 for the PC. The game is set to release for the PS5 and the Xbox One X on September 9, 2024.

Settlers beyond the AAA universe

Fabledom borrows heavily from Settlers and Anno. A common observation in most city-building games is that they seem to borrow heavily from both of these series and add certain new twists to keep their version interesting. Placing of city buildings of a certain population type to keep up production of goods is borrowed from Anno 1800, while resource extraction, tax collection, expanding to new regions and manual command of military units are taken from Settlers 6. The main aim is to gather raw resources with primitive buildings, then transform that into better resources. Farms can produce wheat, which can be harvested and threshed at a mill into flour. Finally, the flour needs to be baked in an oven into bread.

The higher up in a queue a resource is, the more advanced are its requirements. Iron can be extracted from an iron mine, while coal can be extracted from a coal maker’s hut with the help of peasants, but commoners are needed for making weapons at the blacksmith. Naturally, commoners have higher living standards than peasants, so they require condominiums to live in and entertainment needs in the form of theatres — by comparison, peasants need only a homestead and can enjoy themselves at the inn. As the population increases, more buildings are progressively unlocked, allowing even more complicated production queues to be set up.

Fabledom allows you to progress slowly, unlocking more advanced buildings in the process as more fablings move in.

Fabledom also allows the player to control a hero unit from early on. The hero can be spawned from his tent by paying a price in gold. The hero can explore abandoned structures, ruins, and quest items to start quests. Most quests have several steps where decisions need to be taken for progression. Some quests can be triggered by interacting with an object in the world with the hero, while others are automatically triggered as random events. The quest design is a bit bland, mostly requiring additional resources to complete the whole or part of the quest. Some random events also reward a resource called “honor”. Honor, in turn, can be used in other quests to achieve a certain outcome. It is always good enough to stockpile this honor through completing quests, as they can be spent on better outcomes later on.

Fabledom allows the player to start in a given region on the map. This map is generated from a random seed, and can be regenerated if the player feels like it. Different regions have different starting advantages—some may be closer to the ocean, while others may be closer to the mountains. Personally, I always built on land that has a balance of both mountains and is reasonably close to the ocean while having enough flat land to build upon. The other regions will be ruled by a different character. Diplomacy with these regions can be pursued through several actions. Eventually, the player hero can flirt and eventually get married to one of these characters, allying the two regions. High relations with one region do not mean other rulers in the area will like it — they can (and probably will) retaliate, and the player needs to be ready to defend in such a case.

Fabledom has a lot of diplomacy besides the usual resource management of a strategy simulation.

Fabledom has a lot of content that the player can unlock gradually as they progress through the game and gain additional fablings (or villagers). The gradual content drop ensures players stay hooked by inducing the “fear of missing of out”. Many advanced resource queues are unlocked much later in the game, when the player has risen their small fabledom to the rank of a city and has unlocked nobles as a tier for the fablings. Even accessing the commoner tier of production is going to take a while of careful planning. Luckily, there is a very handy time control mechanic which allows the player to slow down or speed up time.

Tales of future past

Fabledom uses a cartoonish template for designing the various models used. All the fablings look like something straight out of a fairy tale. Even the houses and other structures look like three-dimensional illustrations of the pictures in a book. The game’s visuals are pretty dated, yet they look somewhat in place considering the setting. Even the music matches the medieval vibe that the game was aiming to achieve.

Fabledom runs smoothly for the most part. Even with a very high density of fablings on the screen, there was no observable slowdown in performance. There is an observable amount of motion blur, which makes it difficult to see possible areas where framerate might drop – but there were no noticeable issues even after playing for a while with a sizeable population (and while trying to zoom in and out).

Fantastic fables

Fabledom is a city-building game that borrows heavily from the positive points of previous AAA games yet has its own unique twist and setting to make it stand alone. The game offers some fantastic city-building mechanics to players who are new to the genre, and some well-deserved nostalgia for older fans.



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Set in a wholesome fairytale world, Fabledom is a laid-back City builder. Enjoy the growth of your settlement, interact with your neighbors and defend your kingdom from magical creatures. All to find true love and live happily ever after
Set in a wholesome fairytale world, Fabledom is a laid-back City builder. Enjoy the growth of your settlement, interact with your neighbors and defend your kingdom from magical creatures. All to find true love and live happily ever after
Total Score

The Good

  • Intricate resource management that gradually become more difficult
  • Delicate internal and external diplomacy options
  • Detailed UI that allow a wide range of functionalities (including the ability to slow down or speed up time)
  • Story-telling in a style similar to that of a visual novel

The Bad

  • Too much motion blue
  • Graphics slightly dated
  • Progress to the next population tier takes some time
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