In a nutshell
- Play Time: 15 minutes
- Game Type: Competitive, Dexterity
- Maximum Number of Players: 4
- Youngest Player Age: 3 Years Old
- Rules Difficulty: Easy
- Language Dependence: No in-game text
- Game Setup: Easy for adults, slightly challenging for kid hands
- Clean up: Very fast (kids can do it themselves)
- Future Gamer Skills: decision making, deductive reasoning, competition
- Some call it educational: counting, color identification, fine motor skills, counting
- Replay value: High
- Manufacturer: HABA
The Long Story Long
Dragon’s Breath is a great little competitive game by HABA. The story goes that the 4 dragon kiddo’s find an ice column filled with gemstones. Like all good dragons, they want all the shiny things. Unfortunately, ice columns are heavy. Upon realizing that the best way to get the gems is to melt the ice column, they enlist their fire-breathing dad to help. When the column is melted, they will be flush with treasure. And because kid dragons need to make everything into a competition, whoever gets the most treasure wins.
Dragon’s Breath is an amusing game that encourages observation, turn taking, color recognition, counting, and fine motor control. The rules allow for sportsmanship, as well as younger player variants. As long as your kiddo is not inclined to eat plastic pieces, the players can be as young as 3 years old without too much difficulty. Younger children will need help setting it up, as it is not the easiest thing to get all the gems into the ice column. The only required reading is the instructions. Once the kiddo is taught the rules of the game, there is no further reading required. In order to play completely independently, they will need to be able to count to 30, be able to stack small objects, and take turns without argument. Otherwise, an older player will be required. As this is a super fun game, there is usually little difficulty getting an older sibling to comply.
Logistically, this is a small, light game that makes it easy for your kiddo to pick up and put it away without adult intervention. The components are high quality with nice tactile feedback. The gameplay is quiet, and really only as loud as the kids. The gameplay footprint is small, so you don’t need much more than a box sized flat surface to play. The clean up is about as easy as it gets, as a majority of the gameplay actually involves stashing pieces back into the box.
Our 4 year old has been playing Dragon’s Breath for about a year, and it is still in heavy rotation. It is a fantastic game that doesn’t dumb things down for little ones and can be fun for most ages.
Please note: This is an unsolicited, uncompensated endorsement of this game. We are recommending this game because it’s super fun, and it makes parenting easier.