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Pony Stories 414

16 May

Huh. Up to 199 posts over on Fimfiction. So much reposting. But got one guy who says to keep flooding his feed with old reviews, and not a single complaint. Just figure I should do something to commemorate the big round number. That is something of an obsession of mine after all, and I would hate to be inconsistent. Oh, and a question out to the audience. Thinking of sending the big master review list over to Equestria Daily. Good idea/bad idea? And if I do, should I send it to the central submissions or the fan fiction one? Wouldn’t be for another month or two, but I think it might be a good way to find some non-Fimfiction review sources.

Big Master Review List stats: Authors: [2212], Stories [5090], Total Reviews: [8133]

  • All Dead, All Dead by Nathan
  • It Is Tomorrow by Sharpened Quill
  • No Heroes Book IV: The Crystal Empress by PaulAsaran

All Dead, All Dead by Nathan

Him, didn’t expect the direction that went. Not really a story. More of just a thought experiment. As short stories often are. It also had the interesting concept that Nightmare Moon and Luna’s banishment was actually a deception the Princesses worked together for a goal of Celestia’s. Worth reading with a high idea/length ratio.

It Is Tomorrow by Sharpened Quill

Eeehhh… Cool concept, but author skill not quite up to giving it justice. Writing was not so good. Interesting idea though, Princess Celestia inflicting a repeating day on the whole world to keep Twilight Sparkle alive. Still, not recommended.

No Heroes Book IV: The Crystal Empress by PaulAsaran

Aside from a few parts, I liked this one. Given it was the action packed ending of the series, the rapid pacing worked to its advantage this time. It was a good conclusion to the series and I’m glad I didn’t give up on it after the first one. Comments on the series as a whole: Really cool ideas and I liked the villains for the most part. I think that a few of them could have been tweaked, Mane Archon for one was a little plot device-y for my tastes.

Still, the big bad was neat. I might have complained about the unknown powerful magical artifacts in another context, but that’s pretty much just how things go in a magical fantasy world like this and they were actually worked in through the whole series as the villains goal. So, not quite as good as other epics such as Upheaval or Immortal Game, but worth a read in its own right. For the concept of building a new team, I prefered Dusk Guard for being closer to the kind of thing I personally like. Biggest reaction? I think the author was too worried about the story’s length. This could have used more filling out.

Nothing felt contrived, as in almost everything that happened came from established events and character decisions, but it felt very linear. Everything that happened was very much for a specific purpose, either plot or character, and I never really got the feeling that events were unfolding naturally. As I said, very little was contrived so I often got immersed in the story, but I also never had any investment in the characters because even when I was enjoying the story I knew that it would all unfold the way the author wanted it to go. So, no tension is what I’m trying to convey. Now for some specific complaints: (some spoilers from this point on) I think he went a little overboard with Upper Crust’s special talent. I agree with the direction he took it, but not how far he took it. A mention in the fight about how clumsy Twilight was with combat magic would have done a lot to even that out.

As for Princess Luna and Princess Celestia, for all his attempts to avoid fandom cliche this is one point he totally went with the common but about Princess Celestia being the more powerful sister. When actual canon leans towards Princess Luna being the more powerful warrior. Little things in the show (Princess Celestia needed the most powerful magic in the works to defeat her sister), to big hints in the comics where Princess Luna fights monsters all night and Princess Celestia does paperwork and public relations all day. Having Princess Cadance have a moment of payback was sweet though.

Three magical mcguffins, three alicorn princess against the main villain, and two of the magic stones go to Fine Crime for his duel. Not how I would have done it.

About the ending: Overall, I thought the ending was okay. Having the reptile monster be Jormungand was on one hand pretty cool, but how he devastates everything around the world felt kind of out of nowhere. Sort of a “good guys won by the author thinks there should be a downside so boom lots of people die and massive property damage everywhere” sort of thing. Ways to accomplish something similar, because hindsight is just the thing to backseat-writer after a story is finished. Have the fight between alicorns be very destructive with collateral damage. Heck, have Luna and Cadance fight Celestia across half of Equestria, slip bits and pieces of that fight between everypony else fighting each other to handle the long fight without it dragging on. Or do the same with Riptide/Jormungand with the freed monster heading out to the ocean through one or more cities and have a disaster movie type situation where they are trying to stop him before he crushes a major city.

If you wanted to go the darker “we are not heroes” route, have them fail. Riptide disappears into the ocean, even the royal sisters can’t find him in the depths but they know he’s down there. Princess Luna’s team has saved Equestria, but with such a toll of destruction and lives, nopony is feeling very good or thankful. Especially since Silma hadn’t even conquered all of Canterlot yet. As far as most of Equestria and the rest of the world is concerned, the giant monster just wrecked everything because they didn’t stop it.

As for the new lunar republic, eh, I see what the author trying to do. I just think that was not a very good way to do it. At first I was kind of interested, but then it kind of fizzled out. I would have had it be Princess Luna bringing the espionage side of things into the light a little. Basically dissolving the Dark Archons and building a new organization of spies and monster hunters. Build on the concept of Princess Luna defeating nightmares to give Equestria a group that hunts in the night, who will be there for those who no one will believe and those that society has forgotten. A organization for hunting down the mobster under the bed, basically. To sum up. I enjoyed it, liked the core at the heart of the story, but I would have done nearly everything differently.

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8 Comments

Posted by on May 16, 2015 in Ponies, Reading 2015, Reviews

 

8 responses to “Pony Stories 414

  1. Present Perfect

    May 16, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    If you do send it in, send it to general submit, we can’t do shit with it at Ficbox. :B

     
  2. Anonymous

    May 16, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    This is no. 414, isn’t it?

     
    • Griffin

      May 17, 2015 at 3:02 pm

      Right, forgot to change the title when I swapped days with another post.

       
  3. iisawiisaw

    May 16, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    Definitely send it to Equestria Daily!

     
  4. Pascoite Fics

    May 18, 2015 at 9:40 am

    I’m not sure what you want to send it in to EqD for. Just a one-time highlight that the thing exists? Or were you hoping it’d get periodically posted again, maybe with the story updates post? I don’t know how interested Seth would be in linking fanfiction reviews, since he generally hasn’t featured reviews of anything, aside from the episode discussions, which are pretty much cast in a positive light. That might be the toughest sell: that there are plenty of negative reviews.

    By the way, the formatting kind of broke here. The reviews aren’t in separate paragraphs.

     
    • Griffin

      May 18, 2015 at 11:37 am

      The formatting does that every now and then. Not entirely sure why. Thanks for pointing it out.

      As for the list, my primary goal is getting the attention of non-fimfiction text reviewers that might be out there. Get a bit more diversity mixed in. Plus, you know, the validation and letting people know about it is always nice. Really, it comes down to there is no downside and there are at least possible upsides to it.

       
  5. PaulAsaran

    May 21, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    Considering No Heroes was my very first story on the site (counting all four parts as one story), I’m only surprised that your overarching view came out so well. I figured you’d roast me or something with that one.

    Also, really glad you enjoyed Lightning’s Bolt. It’s one of my favorites, and I also feel it’s a turning point in that my writing went from what it used to be (not very good) to what it’s become (getting there).

     
    • Griffin

      May 21, 2015 at 8:11 pm

      Nah, I only roast the really bad stuff. Someone a bit more critical could tear it apart, but I mostly enjoyed it.

       

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