Fairies of the Mistglade review: a charming children’s tabletop RPG
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Fairies of the Mistglade‘s stepped difficulty for kids of all ages
In Fairies of the Mistglade, tiers of play are built into the game, so difficulty increases as children develop. This tiered system gives an awesome way to introduce tabletop RPG’s (including D&D) to young kids or new players of any age without it becoming overwhelming.
Tier 1 is aimed at children ages 3-5 and focuses on the story-telling and problem solving aspects of tabletop RPGs with a few special skills per character. Conflict resolution follows a peaceful track and encourages constructive role-playing. This was the level that I played at with my kid (who, at the time, was almost 3 years old), and he was able to clearly understand and use the mechanics to participate in the story.
Tier 2 is aimed at children ages 5-8 and adds a few extra skills and advanced mechanics to the tier 1 foundation. It also gives an option for combat if the players and game leaders choose to starting introducing combat into your tabletop RPGs.
Tier 3 is aimed at players ages 8+ and adds the full set of the game’s abilities along with a d20 dice system. This last tier is closely approaching the D&D 5e rules, and it gives a good transition step before jumping into more complicated tabletop RPG mechanics.
These tiers can be mixed in your game (i.e. someone at tier 2 and someone at tier 3 can play in the same game) and are all D&D 5e compatible if you wanted to use this mechanic to introduce your children into your regular D&D sessions.
Fairies of the Mistglade‘s fantasy inspired and kid-focused setting
Fairies of the Mistglade takes place in the land of fairies! Each player is a fairy who is trying to help the town solve mysterious happenings through their puzzle solving skills, magical prowess, and conflict resolution abilities.
In the first adventure, The Cursed Garden, players must seek out the source of a corrupting force that is ruining the town’s harvest in order to keep the annual festival going! Then, in the second adventure, The Bothersome Boggle, goods are disappearing, and the party must investigate who or what is the source of the thefts! Both adventures are fun tabletop RPG stories that encourage children to help draw out and influence parts of the map between goals, and the stories were easy to lead while keeping my kid engaged with the fun pictures and rhymes.
Your fairy character in Fairies of the Mistglade:
In this tabletop RPG, different tiers have different character builds, increasing in complexity depending on your child’s age. As the tiers increase, players can add to their core and class abilities.
Your character’s abilities:
Core abilities align with the primary D&D 5e stats and are: strength, dexterity, wisdom, intelligence, and charisma. For Fairies of the Mistglade, instead of assigning numbers to each core ability, you pick two that you are proficient in and are able to use a list of skills based on the abilities chosen. The rest of the skills are unused for that character.
This helps children not get overwhelmed with a big sheet full of numbers like they may when playing D&D or another tabletop RPG and allows them to focus on the storytelling aspects. It also encourages teamwork since everyone has different abilities that need to be tapped.
Class abilities are special abilities unique to the type of character you choose. These can be used to help solve role-play puzzles or unleash special abilities during combat. For example, one of the unique classes created for Fairies of the Mistglade is the Rune Warrior. Rune Warriors have a special ability to enchant items, and no other class has that ability. It is that hero’s unique superpower.
This also helps encourage teamwork to tap into everyone’s class abilities to solve puzzles, and it gives each player a sense of having something very special that only they can do. It promotes the collaborative side of tabletop RPGs and helps children to focus on sharing the glory and playing together instead of playing next to other players.
Tier differences for your character:
Tier 1 is the foundation for your character and gives you a list of 6 skills (based on your core abilities) and 2 class abilities (based on the class you choose). There is a list to mark everything on, making it easier for kids to track as well.
Tier 2 adds a little more complexity. You now have an additional 4 skills and an additional class ability that does damage, facilitating combat introduction. You would introduce this step to kids once you’re sure they can handle the number of abilities used in teir 1.
Tier 3 gets closer to typical D&D layout. You still have only 2 core abilities in order to keep things easy for kids to track, but you now also have spell dice, ability checks (i.e. arcana, history, perception), and a list of 5 spells to tap into. Once your kids master this level, they should have the background to tackle other tabletop RPGs as well.
Unique mechanics in Fairies of the Mistglade:
In addition to tiered tabletop PRG gameplay and it’s focus on kid-friendly adventures, Fairies of the Mistglade also introduces map creation and puzzles as extra items to play with and learn from. This helps kids participate constantly and rotates focus so short attention spans don’t take over.
Collaborative map creation with help from the kids!
Once the general plot is revealed, the game prompts drawing a map, and it is important to let kids help with this part. Fairies of the Mistglade is really good at providing questions to ask your children that will create a map that fits the story while still allowing your child to be creative.
Players are a lot more likely to feel engaged if they have a hand in creating the world that the tabletop RPG is played in, and…. It also gives a really nice “coloring break” so children aren’t just sitting and listening the whole time. It’s a fantastic way to let kids get the fidgets out of their system mid-game.
Educational puzzles to help your kids learn and play!
Throughout Fairies of the Mistglade there are periods where it calls for a puzzle to be completed by your kids. This might be a maze, word search, color by number, etc depending on the tier of play that you are on.
Like with map creation, these puzzle breaks give a good change of pace in the game’s story to allow for some activity, and it is a great educational tool. The puzzles teach counting and ABC’s, so they provide a game context around learning core educational skills. In particular, the tier 2 number maze in The Cursed Garden got my kid over a bit of a roadblock where he was having trouble counting into the teens – previously he wouldn’t even try, but he did it for the puzzle!
When we played, if my kid ever started getting too fidgety, we let him color the puzzle sheet or redo a puzzle too. Having activities readily available to pull into the game that have fitting context and pictures really helped combat the short attention spans that can sometimes end a session short.
What did my kid think about Fairies of the Mistglade?
Fairies of the Mistglade went over really well with him! My kid was interested in the story, and having the puzzles on hand meant he had an outlet for his fidgeting. He loved the puzzles and wanted to do them again by the end of our first game.
My kid also got super involved with the discussions and started getting really comfortable with changing things and making decisions. In The Bothersome Boggle, he even asked if the boggle could work at the makeup stand at the end. It ended the game with a good laugh, and it also showed that he was connecting with the story and having fun with the game.
My overall impression of Fairies of the Mistglade:
Fairies of the Mistglade is a great kid-focused tabletop role playing game that incorporated educational elements while also just having fun together! There was a lot of attention paid to the story, the art, and the extra activities to make this a kid-friendly adventure, and our family had a lot of fun playing. My kid was engaged through the whole game, and it provided us with some space to have an awesome family-bonding experience.
I would definitely recommend Fairies of the Mistglade as a great family-friendly tabletop RPG or as an introduction into D&D, and I’m looking forward to future releases!!
Where to a copy of Fairies of the Mistglade:
You can pick up a copy of Fairies of the Mistglade and The Bothersome Boggle on DriveThruRPG
Check out a video on how to play Fairies of the Mistglade on youtube!
Check out their latest release, Dino Riderz, as well!
This game was a lot of fun, and I hope you get the chance to check it out! If you do, please let me know in the comments below what your thoughts are!
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9 thoughts on “Fairies of the Mistglade review: a charming children’s tabletop RPG”
Wow. A rule set that attempts to span the gap from basically birth to being able to play D&D 5e… That’s something any parent would want to check out. I’m in. Thanks for another great article.