Welcome to the Playmobil Playroom, where we occasionally take a peek inside those impressive blue boxes and see what treasures await within. Sometimes we’ll have step-by-step photos walking you through assembly, maybe we’ll discuss and review a particular set or theme, or maybe we’ll have an unboxing video.
Fairies is a fairly new Playmobil theme, and the Magical Fairy Forest is the centerpiece of that line—which also includes a friendly dragon with baby, mystical fairy glen, enchanted fairy with horse, enchanted fairy ship, and unicorn-drawn fairy carriage.
It’s Playmobil’s latest attempt to attract girls, I guess. Lots of flowers, baby animals, pinks, purples, and pastels. Granted, we haven’t featured many of the “girls themes” because I honestly don’t like the unnecessary gendering of toys. Want to attract girls to a set? Maybe include more female figures (which I’ve commented on before).
Still, the Magical Fairy Forest is undeniably pretty, and it immediately appealed to both me and my son. Neither of my kids is a fan of fairies in general, so I wasn’t sure how this one was going to go over. So let’s take a look, shall we?
- Product Number: 9132
- Number of Pieces: 214 pieces
- Number of figures: 3 adult fairies (2 female, 1 male)
Ease of Build:
On a scale of 1-5, this set clocks in around a 4. There are a LOT of little flowers, plants, and tree pieces, which is why the total piece count is so high. The trees each consist of three or four pieces, and it just takes a while (and a lot of dexterity with mini bits of plastic) to assemble. It’s not exactly difficult; it’s just time-consuming and potentially maddening if you don’t like dealing with all those little fiddly pieces.
- It’s a beautiful set; no lie. It’s almost entirely built of foliage, so if you’re a fan of Playmobil’s flowers and other flora, there’s a LOT to like here.
- The animals. You get two unicorns (one of them’s a baby!), three foxes (two babies!), a peacock, two dangling snakes, and a couple dragonflies and butterflies. In all the Playmobil sets we’ve opened, I don’t think we’ve ever gotten a unicorn or peacock before.
- The cauldron and “gemstones.” The set comes with a little baggie filled with colorful pebbles, which is like kid crack. At least in this house.
There are three hidden caves at the bottom of the set, beneath the base. And there are a few places up in the trees where the fairies can hang out—including a cool swing. Other than that, there’s not a whole lot of true interaction. This set relies more on imagination than actual fun, playable gimmicks built into the set.
There’s nothing wrong with that, but I know the Fairies line is marketed primarily to girls. And when you compare this to something that’s more heavily marketed to boys, such as The Explorers Hidden Temple, it’s not even a fair comparison. I hate the “boys toys” and “girls toys” status quo that’s unfortunately still prevalent in the toy industry, but it exists. And as such, it only makes sense to make the two as equal as possible, right?
Why load up the “boys” sets with cool action features that reward engaged play, yet the “girls” sets get colorful animals and an insistence that kids create their own imaginary scenarios?
Plus, as pretty as this set is, it will not last long in one piece. The trees consist of 3-4 pieces each, and none of the leaves or branches are all that secure. Try moving this set from room to room, and I guarantee pieces will start falling off. There’s also no “home” for all of the accessories and extra pieces. In other words, there’s no place to store all those animals, instruments, and magical accouterments.
So playability is marginally high once it’s first assembled, but I’d say it drops off quickly over time. It also doesn’t exactly blend in very well with other Playmobil themes. It’d take a lot of imagination to see the Fairies sets work together with Family Fun, City, History, Wildlife, or any of the others. MAYBE with the Princess line, but that’s still a stretch.
Despite my playability complaints above, this set went over fairly well with the kids (both the girl and boy). They enjoyed putting it together, and they’ve enjoyed playing with it. Neither is a huge fan of fairies or princesses in general, but the beautiful details of the Magical Fairy Forest won them over, I guess. I’d say this gets two hesitant thumbs up from them (but a qualified meh from this adult).
(Disclosure: This Playmobil set was provided free of charge for review purposes. All opinions remain our own.)