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[GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Retl on Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:24 am

I am not an observant reader:

I had listened to this chapter on loop five times before I finally realized that Echo did not die after stopping those earlier bots, and that he had betrayed Blackjack for a chance at returning to his body and continued survival. Though considering that last minute plan failure, he might not survive very long afterwards. Which really shifts my sad feelings from 'awww, I liked him why did he die' to 'aww he actually went against her, he's probably not gonna be focused on anymore'.

Also, I can't remember if I rambled on about my desire for Rampage Tribute and undrawn Scotch Tape that must be drawn. Because there's dozens of fun pic ideas between the two, and there's probably not gonna be a whole lot more to see out of either as things wind down. and the whole Rammyrams really wanting to die.

Also can't remember if I did the whole thing in my previous post where I fixate on the fact that the word balloon showed up in a chapter. But it did. Bursting too. I was amused. Confound these obsessive interests.

YAY FILLY TIMEOUT DEVICE

20 hours of looping later, it's still entertaining and I'm still finding new things I missed before. So I feel something went right.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by JadedPony on Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:24 pm

You know what I would love to see, and this is totally random: The Sweetie-bot's original personality reactivate and have a conversation with Boo. The Bot and the Boo together would be comedy gold. Also having Sweetie-bot become Boo's sidekick, that would be great.


Last edited by JadedPony on Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:37 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:29 pm

JadedPony wrote:You know what I would love to see, and this is totally random: The Sweetie-bot's original personality reactivate and have a conversation with Boo. The Bot and the Boo together would be comedy gold.
When the lights turned off due to Cogs being denied full control of EC-1101 for the second time I lobbied for Sweetie Bott reactivating just long-enough to yell "OH, COME ON!"
Sadly, I was denied.

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by JadedPony on Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:46 pm

swicked wrote:
JadedPony wrote:You know what I would love to see, and this is totally random: The Sweetie-bot's original personality reactivate and have a conversation with Boo. The Bot and the Boo together would be comedy gold.
When the lights turned off due to Cogs being denied full control of EC-1101 for the second time I lobbied for Sweetie Bott reactivating just long-enough to yell "OH, COME ON!"
Sadly, I was denied.


I was totally waiting for SB to say, "That's not a word!" to whatever name Blackjack was going to come up with.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:04 pm

swicked wrote:
JadedPony wrote:You know what I would love to see, and this is totally random: The Sweetie-bot's original personality reactivate and have a conversation with Boo. The Bot and the Boo together would be comedy gold.
When the lights turned off due to Cogs being denied full control of EC-1101 for the second time I lobbied for Sweetie Bott reactivating just long-enough to yell "OH, COME ON!"
Sadly, I was denied.
Actually, it turns out that Somber did add that, though I only found out when Icy Shake reported an error in it.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:08 pm

O. Hinds wrote:
swicked wrote:
JadedPony wrote:You know what I would love to see, and this is totally random: The Sweetie-bot's original personality reactivate and have a conversation with Boo. The Bot and the Boo together would be comedy gold.
When the lights turned off due to Cogs being denied full control of EC-1101 for the second time I lobbied for Sweetie Bott reactivating just long-enough to yell "OH, COME ON!"
Sadly, I was denied.
Actually, it turns out that Somber did add that, though I only found out when Icy Shake reported an error in it.
...pretty sneaky, Somber...

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by FeatherDust on Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:51 pm

Dekshuduph wrote:
He turned towards Boo and me.
‘me’ to ‘I’
No, it's correct.  The pronoun doesn't change when you add another person.  You wouldn't say "He turned towards I."  You'd say "He turned towards me."  So you still use 'me' when you add Boo to it.

As immortal as me.
‘me’ to ‘I’
Honestly, this can go either way.

If you assume there's only one implied verb, "[She is] as immortal as me," then he's using himself as the direct object, so 'me' is correct.

But it's equally correct to assume a second implied verb at the end, "[She is] as immortal as I [am]."

In fact, even if you made the first verb explicit, you could still correctly say "She is as immortal as I," because it can be read as an implied 'am'.

Since it's some kind of correct any direction you go, there's no point changing the author's words.

...and anyway it's always iffy to talk about the grammar in a direct quote, since the character might be speaking ungrammatically while the author is perfectly aware of that and doing it intentionally.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Dekshuduph on Wed Apr 02, 2014 2:21 pm

FeatherDust wrote:
Since it's some kind of correct any direction you go, there's no point changing the author's words.
...Oh.
...and anyway it's always iffy to talk about the grammar in a direct quote, since the character might be speaking ungrammatically while the author is perfectly aware of that and doing it intentionally.
I already know about that, but I was thinking at the time that Discord should know how it would be correctly used (due to omnipresence and immortality); then again, he is also Discord, so this point is valid just the same for that.

I keep being disappointed by how many of what I feel are valid corrections being turned away by Hinds, but then again it's helping me learn and I still point out valid mistakes. Back to lurking.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Wed Apr 02, 2014 2:47 pm

Sorry.

Speaking of Discord's speech, though, we nearly had him saying "an connoisseur of wrongness", but we eventually decided to use the correct article.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Somber on Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:26 pm

Is a sneaky, sneaky pony....
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:54 pm

:)
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:21 pm

I just realized I'm having Alicorn Twilight angst over BJ. "Does this change the core of the character? After this, is she still going to be the same pony we know and love?"

I'd like to think that the concern is more valid in this case... Shy

Icy Shake wrote:“You know, I was never supposed to stay a villain.  My role was very clear.  Open antagonist to challenge Twilight Sparkle’s presuppositions of friendship and make her face having her friends turn on her at the outset, and then I was supposed to grow into a grudging ally of sorts.  I had the scripts, and I was quite looking forward to my time with Fluttershy.  Rehabilitation.  Yay,” Discord said sarcastically, pressing her hooves together and fluttering her eyes, then slumping.  “Only it never happened.  I stayed a statue, and things went… wrong.”  I arched a brow at her, and she rolled her eyes.  “Oh, don’t give me that.  I’m a spirit of chaos.  I’m a connoisseur of wrongness.

I . . . really don't care for this, but let's see how it goes.
I headcanon that Discord's knowledge of "what should have happened" is evidence that this is one of many possible worlds, each just a mirror's breadth away from the Equestria of Princess Twilight. I sort of think of this one as Equestria-235.

chinman wrote:Crazy Fan Prediction 1:  Okay I'm going to call it now, when Pinkie's message mentioned that "just because ponies do bad things doesn't mean they aren't still your friend", she wasn't talking about Rampage, she was talking about Echo, whom I suspect will play a key role in helping BJ out of this mess.
Why not both?

chinman wrote:Crazy Fan Prediction 4:  This is the big one,  Cogs, Steel Rain and even Amadi/Vitiosis are all going to find out the hard way that yes, the Tokomare is indeed more than just a machine to be exploited, probably in the most painful way possible when some or all of them become the first victims of a newly re-awakened star.
Fairly sure Amadi is firmly on board with the Eater. His denial of Goldie's ranting sounded suspiciously like telling him exactly what he wanted to hear.

Which isn't to say he won't be eaten by it.

Dekshuduph wrote:And that leads me into Blackjack.  This is really the only thing that bothers me about this chapter, yet ironically I view it as a great part of her character.  This is the first time I've read something this big by typing it out, so although it took me two days straight to read through, I caught a lot more details and was able to enjoy the read a lot more.  It is, in turn, also the first time I could really appreciate a writing method I've theorised about but could never really appreciate in use.  And that, fellow readers, is character stupidity.  The author comes from a set level of intelligence, and they control the world that they are going to write about.  Usually, good writers are going to have pretty high intelligence or are pretty clever in how they write, so the characters they create to fill the roles of the story can never be as intelligent as the writer themselves.  This makes the reader able to be on the same level of basic knowledge as the lead character and sympathise with them; this, however, is broken when the reader is overanalysing the story and can see through what the author's doing.  It makes the main character seem stupid, when in reality they just don't have enough time to think as you do.  Even if you're not as intelligent as that character actually is, you as the reader can still lose your suspension of disbelief; after all, knowledge ≃ intelligence × time.  Or I could be completely wrong and everything this paragraph says is bullshit.
Well, this is part of the balancing act of writing, I think. I don't think it's true that a character can never be smarter than the writer. Since the author has total control over the world, he can simulate high intelligence by letting them catch on quickly to secrets and deceptions, and the reader will accept it as long as there's a logical path to the knowledge. Picture Sherlock Holmes, for example. Conversely, writing a character as slow, foolish, or innocent can make the reader feel smart for working things out before the character does. The author can then use that to set up dramatic irony.

Dekshuduph wrote:
Snip’s skull whispered.
I feel like ‘Snip’s’ should be ‘Snips'’.
Possessives are always 's, even if the word ends in an s. So the correct form would be "Snips's". The s' construction is only used for the plural possessive. (i.e. The zebras' guns.)

O. Hinds wrote:
swicked wrote:When the lights turned off due to Cogs being denied full control of EC-1101 for the second time I lobbied for Sweetie Bott reactivating just long-enough to yell "OH, COME ON!"
Sadly, I was denied.
Actually, it turns out that Somber did add that, though I only found out when Icy Shake reported an error in it.
What? That's... not in there now...
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:36 pm

SilentCarto wrote:What? That's... not in there now...
...
I'll go look...
edit: No, it's still there. Just search for "OH, COME ON".
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:40 pm

O. Hinds wrote:
SilentCarto wrote:What? That's... not in there now...
...
I'll go look...
edit: No, it's still there.  Just search for "OH, COME ON".
You mean this?

Then everything went dark all at once.  The hologram.  The terminals.  Even the maneframe.  Cognitum turned her head wildly in bafflement, the only illumination coming from the stream of lights circling the spire and Cognitum’s red glowing eyes.  “OH, COME ON!” she screamed, then whirled and demanded of me, “What is going on?”

That's CogJack saying it, not Sweetie Bot...
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:59 pm

Well, that's a compromise.
A lot of my ideas end up like that. Still fun Lyra

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Evilgidgit on Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:06 pm

What I love is that "Knowledge" displayed the desperation individuals may gain in the wasteland and we had Rampage, Echo (yay for getting his body back!), and Snips (!) all cross the line to get what they want. Now I just hope that they, along with Dawn...and Charm I suppose...can get redemption.

Also, I hope we get to see a full reunion of the surviving Marauders.  Spike
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:14 pm

SilentCarto wrote:
O. Hinds wrote:
SilentCarto wrote:What? That's... not in there now...
...
I'll go look...
edit: No, it's still there.  Just search for "OH, COME ON".
You mean this?

Then everything went dark all at once.  The hologram.  The terminals.  Even the maneframe.  Cognitum turned her head wildly in bafflement, the only illumination coming from the stream of lights circling the spire and Cognitum’s red glowing eyes.  “OH, COME ON!” she screamed, then whirled and demanded of me, “What is going on?”

That's CogJack saying it, not Sweetie Bot...
Ah, sorry; I didn't realize that you wanted Sweetie Bot specifically.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Evilgidgit on Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:32 pm

Oh, a question I forgot to ask. Will we find out who the soul was that talked to Blackjack as her mother? Or was that just a random soul trapped among millions?
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by JadedPony on Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:57 pm

Evilgidgit wrote:Oh, a question I forgot to ask. Will we find out who the soul was that talked to Blackjack as her mother? Or was that just a random soul trapped among millions?


Spoilers!:
It was Princess Luna. Her soul later appeared in the story when the bad guys captured it and discord broke it free. Luna controlled dreams as part of her soul's talents. She also controlled the ooze ponies because they are souls with no real minds, trapped in a primal dream like state.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Thu Apr 03, 2014 8:18 am

O. Hinds wrote:Ah, sorry; I didn't realize that you wanted Sweetie Bot specifically.
Oh, sorry. Swicked had mentioned her, so when you said that was in there, I thought that was what you meant.

Evilgidgit wrote:Oh, a question I forgot to ask. Will we find out who the soul was that talked to Blackjack as her mother? Or was that just a random soul trapped among millions?
FeatherDust dropped some compelling evidence that it was Luna dreamwalking.

JadedPony wrote:It was Princess Luna. Her soul later appeared in the story when the bad guys captured it and discord broke it free. Luna controlled dreams as part of her soul's talents. She also controlled the ooze ponies because they are souls with no real minds, trapped in a primal dream like state.
Ummm... you're not wrong, but you're not entirely correct either. When BJ got sucked into the Tokomare after Hightower Prison, she saw something at the center, being attacked by green lightning, that made her freak out.

The closer to the center I moved, the more frequent and terrible that lightning became, but I started to suspect it wasn’t as if this place was singling me out.  I was just getting caught by stray fire.  Whatever the lightning was targeting lay right in the middle of this sea.  Slowly, the motes thinned out more and more until…
No…
It couldn’t be!
A dozen bolts of lightning struck the center, and for the first time I realized that the scream Lacunae had been hearing hadn’t been a what.  It was a who.


And then in this chapter,

In the center of the platform was a strange, vaguely familiar design etched in the metal floor plates: a circle with a six-pointed star in the middle.  Six unicorns, one standing at each point, were trying to keep a ball of brilliant white contained in the middle.  Green lighting from their horns raked across it, forcing it back whenever it drifted.

So, having seen the outside, real-world version of the same place, it sounds like the "who" in the center was Luna. Which means she's been held here a lot longer than BJ's been in the Core. In fact, it sounds a whole lot like she's been held this way for 200 years.

I'm not saying she didn't visit BJ's dream, but I don't think she's in command of the fleshmobiles. They're just good ponies who did what they could to help BJ when she needed it. We saw in the previous chapter, even bare souls are fully capable of understanding speech, and Glass carried on a conversation, such as it was.

I looked around at the motes swirling around me.  They were like the glowy interiors of memory orbs.  As they drew near my horn, I pulled back.  “Please!  Please don’t.  I think I know what you are, and I don’t want to see how you died.  I’m... I’m really... really sick of horrible things.”
Some of them pulled back a little.  Others seemed more interested in my belly.  Could they sense it?  “Can you tell me if my baby’s okay?  I was in that Enervation, and...”  One of the motes swept into my belly, and I felt a warm glow and fluttering.  “Okay... that’s odd...” I gasped.  The mote reappeared out my back and bounced up and down in front of me.  “That means yes?”  More bobbing.  I felt more relief than I had in ages from a simple floating light.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Guest on Thu Apr 03, 2014 11:05 am

I was thinking what if discord put BJ's soul back in her augmented body?

Not the way it was of course. No. That based on what we've seen couldn't be the case.

But what if he did something similar to what Rarity did and disguised BJ's soul to "look" like Luna's. I think earlier in this chapter BJ sees instead of RD, Pinkie, Twilight, AJ, FS, and Rarity like she usually does she saw five pallette swapped Rarities and the original. Seems like it could be foreshadowing.

Snips was there so I think it may be possible he picked up a trick or two from him.

Again Sorry if someone else brought this up. I don't keep up with this thread too much.

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by FeatherDust on Thu Apr 03, 2014 12:32 pm

I was just thinking about our Immortal Warrior and his relationship with the Eater. Blackjack said in this chapter that Vitiosus has "a phoenix talisman", naturally a bit slow on the uptake that this guy is way older than Project Phoenix.

That got me thinking, though. I'd been thinking of his immortality as just a blessing/curse from the stars; but maybe it isn't. Maybe it really is a physical talisman that lives inside him the same way Rampage's does. And if so, then it's almost certainly some kind of gift from the Eater of Souls created for the purpose of making him an ally and pawn. And if that's the case, it's almost certainly made out of starmetal.

That got me thinking; if I recall correctly, the Phonenix Talisman's physical form is a massive jewel wrapped in bands of starmetal, right?

So I think I know how to kill Rampage, and by extension, the Immortal. (I'm just gonna call him that, because names are slippery things for a guy who's lived thousands of years.) You just need to shoot a moonstone bullet into the Phoenix core. Soul jars are supposed to be unbreakable, but that's because they use the power inherent in a soul to keep the physical form stable. We know the starmetal sword could cut soul jars, so clearly soul magic must defeat soul magic, to paraphrase Uncle. The moonstone reaction is all about soul energy, so a soul-energy-powered invincibility effect just wouldn't work against that. It would not only make a nuke-sized blast, but vaporize the starmetal part of the jar and, presumably, disrupt the regeneration effect even if it didn't completely incinerate the core.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Thu Apr 03, 2014 6:56 pm

Last wrote:I was thinking what if discord put BJ's soul back in her augmented body?

Not the way it was of course. No. That based on what we've seen couldn't be the case.

But what if he did something similar to what Rarity did and disguised BJ's soul to "look" like Luna's. I think earlier in this chapter BJ sees instead of RD, Pinkie, Twilight, AJ, FS, and Rarity like she usually does she saw five pallette swapped Rarities and the original. Seems like it could be foreshadowing.

Snips was there so I think it may be possible he picked up a trick or two from him.

Again Sorry if someone else brought this up. I don't keep up with this thread too much.
I don't see how that's possible. Cog's been holding that soul here for a long time, and if she got BJ put in her again, she would have felt the same conflict that made her go into convulsions the first time.

Anyway, without her soul, BJ was... nobody home.

FeatherDust wrote:That got me thinking; if I recall correctly, the Phonenix Talisman's physical form is a massive jewel wrapped in bands of starmetal, right?
Not a bad idea, but it's gold, unfortunately.

Something hard and heavy landed on my chest.  I coughed and hacked as I looked at an egg of pink quartz wrapped in golden wire and glowing with an eerie pink-tinged light.  A strange glyph in the egg’s center, a twisting whirlpool that throbbed like a heart, glowed more brightly than the rest, and there were more lights within.

Though now I kinda want to see Rampage riding Tom down, waving her helmet like Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove.

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:02 pm



I'm just a soul
Yes, I'm only a soul
And I'm sitting here inside of a hole
Well, it's a long, long way below the wide, open spaces
It's a long, long wait while I'm hovering in stasis
But I know I'll have a mind someday
At least I hope and pray I'll be whole
But today I control
Just a soul...
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Guest on Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:34 pm

SilentCarto wrote: and if she got BJ put in her again, she would have felt the same conflict that made her go into convulsions the first time.

I disagree on this part. It's inconsistent with how the figurines have been presented in both FO:E and PH. If disguising the soul had them behave in the same manner as the soul's original owner we'd expect BJ to have six Rarities in her head instead of the main six.

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Meleagridis on Fri Apr 04, 2014 12:24 am

Chapter Reactions:
Called Coyotl=Coyote=Trickster. Can't believe I didn't see the blank connection, though...

Discord misses fingers and it is the best

"My power flashed, flickered, and went dark, leaving me in the depths where no one… not Boo, not Cognitum, not even Rampage or the Legate, could find me."
I look at the words below me and know it continues, but there is some part of me that can't shake the feeling that this is the chapter end, a shameless cliffhanger. Anyways, what a fight. An excellent example of scenery gorn slipped into an action sequence. And those meat-ponies? This raises so many interesting questions!

Dream, sister... Luuuuuna?

Not sure what to think about "Discord as Bard." He really seems to waffle back and forth between encouraging BJ to be the hero and gagging whenever she says hero-isms.

"“Well, that’s hardly what I was thinking,” Discord replied, indignantly.  “I was thinking that marmalade would go wonderfully on pizza.”
I laughed quietly.  “That does sound good, actually.  We should have that when we get done down here.”
Discord stared at me, skeptically, but then nudged my shoulder with a hoof.  “Deal.”"
Oh. My. I've become attached now. From this point forward, I will lose it if Discord doesn't make it.
I dunno, I've just never been able to pinpoint such a moment so clearly before.

" But if it so much as farted a spark at me, I’d whack it with a missile till it behaved"
I'd like to pause here to remember Sparklefarts, a wonderful curse word years before its time.

"“No.  No… please no…” Dawn whimpered as she struggled against the spear pinning her through the middle of the jar.  “Please…”"
Christ, man.

Aaaaaw yeah, immortal Snails. In his few lines of dialogue, I already like him again.

Surprised nobody mentioned the repairasprites [specifically, when Golden Vision Blackjack was tearing people apart with them]. Sure didn't seem all that easy to see Cog's point of view when BJ was... um, seeing from Cog's point of view. Tearing people apart with robot bugs isn't very sympathetic.

"The cavity that surrounded us was more immense than anything I’d ever seen, in any memory or in person. "
Shadowbolt Tower.

“Trottenheimer’s firing trajectory is unaccommodating for interception,”
I can't put a finger on why, but this makes me smile. The thought that Trottenheimer, one of my favourite supporting characters, is- even in death -still striving to keep things sane.

"Otherwise, even if we are lucky enough to intercept the projectile, it would simply become whatever form was last programmed into the Tokomare.”
Shit son. Can I just point out that we have no idea what this very brief and casual mention could possibly lead to? Other than something terrible and ultimately climactic?

“It’s not about you, Cognitum.”
Haha! Oh, wow. She learns. And better yet- she teaches!

“I… do.  I’m sorry, Blackjack.  The necromancy is all I have left now,” he whispered hollowly
Snails.
Honestly, I've been a little dissapointed by his silence so far. The very first thing he said when he got pulled in, despite being locked inside a TORTURE CHAMBER, was "Hey. You do that thing I asked you to do? Good. Also, don't listen to the robolady. She's crazy." It's so snarky, stout, and dripping with personality. But now he's saying that he doesn't have personality anymore or something. Maybe I'm just bitter- I like Snips.

"Then Discord turned his attention to Snips.  “This one isn’t even finished yet!  Let me see.”  And he snapped his claws.  From the storm, a cloud of tiny motes swept through the side of the jar and into the skull.  “There we go.  Really, you need to be careful with that dark magical stuff, old sport.”  He snapped his claws again, and the jar vanished in another flash."
Squeaky wheel gets the oil? I love any well done Discord scene, and this one certainly counts! It's great to get both a characteristically silly and over the top display of godly might with the sweat'n'stress of a good bluff. And... oh. Yeah, saw this coming. Now I'm getting all blubbery. Thrush, Rover, Fifi, Discord, in the span of... what? Five minutes?

“Fools!  Fools!  All of you, fools!  I am the Queen of the Night!  And this world is mine!” she crowed, her wings spreading as her red and black magic mane and tail snapped in the air behind her. "
Holy crap Viti saw this coming.
Why wouldn't he just say so?! If Blackjack just had mind-reading this could be so much easier.

"Amadi."
Hm.
Ah.

Afterthoughts:
SnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnips. A clever turn for Discord, and (I think) a great example of how he’s learned from Blackjack. At this point, Snips seems to be doomed to step into villain territory with no hope of return- FO:E is still a fantasy setting, and fantasy has a thing about bone-heads with powers over life and death. But… isn’t that just so boring? The standard solution would be to kill him, or at best to somehow give his spirit rest. But wouldn’t fixing him just be so much more original? Really looking forward to having a skeletal necromancer on Team Good Guy.
I… really hope those were holograms of everyone dying. But given how Cogs acts out in other spots of the chapter I can’t really put my faith in that.
Anybody else notice how Echo specifically said he didn’t want to die? When put next to the likes of Blackjack, Deus, Gorgon, Rampage, and all the other suicidally determined, it’s no wonder his inferiority complex hasn’t been helped.

Also, is this a typo?
"Okay.  Now my blasé attitude began to melt away as I saw, in the image, the bottom of the shaft below the projectile exploded."
She saw the projectile exploded, or explode?

replies:

SilentCarto wrote:Okay, wait just an apple-buckin' minute.
Ch. 65 Spoilers:
The whole "Maiden of the Stars" thing was total BS, right? A prophecy Vitiosus made up himself. And yet, he was able to pick out and target the mare who would ultimately become the vessel for Princess Luna.

There's still something screwy going on here...
When you’re as old as the prophecy, things do tend to break down. But sometimes even the timeless immortal can’t fight fate. I think it’s safe to say that both Viti and Cogs have opposed goals. Cogs wants a city to rise from the ashes of a star, Viti wants the star to rise from the ashes of a city. Or something. But I doubt he’s been honest with anyone.

I do think it’s strange how he seems to be on the exact same wavelength as Steel Rain. I wonder if they’ve been talking.

FeatherDust wrote:
Do we know if Blackjack even started going by that name before she got her cutie mark?  Actually does anyone recall where her cutie mark story was given?  I can't recall and searching for "cutie mark" is a needle in a haystack operation.
Maybe look for Hatches, or “her real name”
Nevermind, looks like Carto covered this already.

SilentCarto wrote:
FeatherDust wrote:Ghouls are essentially a soul wandering around with a decaying or even missing brain (that is to say, mind).
That's not entirely accurate. "You gotta shoot 'em in the head", right? The brain is the only weak spot on Canterlot ghouls (which are a totally different thing, I know.) While ghouls often have missing bits of soft tissue, the brain seems to be critical.
Hrm? I'm remembering something completely different. I thought you had to sever some part of them, head or limb, or otherwise disintegrate or rip to shreds. Like the Ghosts in Dead Money.

SilentCarto wrote:
Icy Shake wrote:“You know, I was never supposed to stay a villain.  My role was very clear.  Open antagonist to challenge Twilight Sparkle’s presuppositions of friendship and make her face having her friends turn on her at the outset, and then I was supposed to grow into a grudging ally of sorts.  I had the scripts, and I was quite looking forward to my time with Fluttershy.  Rehabilitation.  Yay,” Discord said sarcastically, pressing her hooves together and fluttering her eyes, then slumping.  “Only it never happened.  I stayed a statue, and things went… wrong.”  I arched a brow at her, and she rolled her eyes.  “Oh, don’t give me that.  I’m a spirit of chaos.  I’m a connoisseur of wrongness.

I . . . really don't care for this, but let's see how it goes.
I headcanon that Discord's knowledge of "what should have happened" is evidence that this is one of many possible worlds, each just a mirror's breadth away from the Equestria of Princess Twilight. I sort of think of this one as Equestria-235.

Pretty much my headcanon on the matter, too, but I still found his overly obvious exposition on the topic a bit obtrusive. Like a mechanical bull in a fine china shop. While I'm cool with Discord being aware and bard-like in his interpretation of life as a plotline, a good bard knows you don't explain to a character that they are a character. Not so bluntly, at least.

I wish I could say I'm not sorry but I can't:
Nothing. I couldn’t feel anything. Except for hurt and panic, but I tried to supress those by focusing on an all-encompassing numbness. Worse than having all of my organs and limbs and even my face swapped for metal replicas, I didn’t even have those precious few bits of flesh that helped me stay sane. In the complete dark, I started to miss mechanical whirring and nagging fuel bars as much as I had missed my heart. Is this what Deus felt like, trapped inside that tank?

I tried to move, to walk without walking. But this wasn’t about having legs that were smarter than me- I just didn’t have legs. I thought up and down, and tried anything that might take me in some sort of direction. What else could I do?

“Help!” I cried out into the dark. I expected an echo, but I’m not sure I could even hear my cry since I technically had no ears. Or mouth, for that matter. Maybe I was just thinking it. But I yelled nonetheless. “Echo? Spike? P-21? Glory?”

I knew plenty of ponies who knew their way around a computer system. But did they know it better than an insane program that was actually a computer, ensouled or not? “Anyone! Get me out of here!”

“You again!”

At first I was afraid Cognitum had returned to throw me in a dungeon in the place she had banished me to. But that was not her voice. I couldn’t see her disguising it as something so brash, male, and vaguely familiar. “Who is-” I began to ask.

“For the last time, I don’t care if you think you are Queen of the Goddessdamn Mole Rats! I take my orders from a superior officer, not some wet-behind-the-ears copycat with Pygmalion issues! You can stop calling this number because I have had it up to here with your bullshit! Loyal servant of her true majesty, signing off!”

“Wait!” I shouted, “Don’t go! I need your help!”

I was greeted with silence, which slowly began to fill with the doubt and fear I had been holding in check until now. My last chance had just hung up on-

“Who the hell is this?” replied the voice, “You’re coming through on the same channel as that frustrating Princess Wannabe, but you sound more like Corporal Whines. Name, rank, and serial number!”

No wonder he had been so hostile. I would be to, if I thought I was speaking to Cognitum. “My name is Blackjack! I’ve been trapped in some kind of system computer thingy, and I need to get-”

“Jack? Jack?! Good old Jack the Wrecker! I knew you wouldn’t let yourself get scrapped by a little megaspell!”

Vision returned to me, but it wasn’t the same scene as before. Instead of that terrifyingly massive chamber and the dessicated skeleton of the Tokomare, I was presented with a small room of unmatched quaintness. There was a workbench in the corner, strewn with metal tools. The walls were plastered with posters of pre-war singing sensations such as Sweetie Belle and Flank Sinatra. And in the center of the room, illuminated by a single artificial lamp hanging from the ceiling, was a three-armed hovering robot with a pinstripe paintjob.

“Robotic gutsy-class guard Cerberus ready for duty, sir!”

My nonexistent mouth hung open. “Cerberus? How did-”

“I knew it from the start, but when we got reports of heavy artillery coming from the Core I told them all: It’s good old Jack!” Cerberus cheered, lining up his plasma weapon as if tracking an invisible foe. “Still taking down pre-war prisons, or are you moving up in the ranks? Come on, commander, what’d you blow up? A sea serpent? A dragon? Was it another one of those bloated superghouls? By Her Majesty’s Sun, I wish I could have been there to see it!”

“No,” I whispered, “No, it wasn’t anything like that. Listen, Cerberus-”

“I was still fit for duty, you know! Gutsy-class units can work through anything! I’ll have you know I still had one fully functional arm!” He began to pace the length of his cramped room. “Sending me, a bona-fide military badass, out on a delivery run like some common messenger bot? Disgraceful!”

I was starting to wonder where the mute button was. I didn’t know it was possible to get a headache without having a head. It was better than the endless silence, but I still wished I could put a hoof over his mouth- er, speaker. “Okay, okay, I’m sorry. But I really need you to-”

“It’s because of Graves, isn’t it? Goddess dammit, I did my best! I tried! Why won’t anypony believe me?” Cerberus hovered up towards the camera. My view shook as he grabbed it with a clamp. “Commander, if you give me just one more chance I promise I won’t let you down! I swear on my honor as a soldier! I can still be a contender! I’ll do better!”

“Cerberus!” I snapped. He backed up from the camera, withdrawing his clamp like a wounded paw. I sighed, and as I did I could feel something strange in the void. Like a high pitched sound that reverberated right through me. “I’m sorry, but I really don’t know how much time I have to talk to you. I really need you to get a message to Glory.”

“Delivery service again? Do you not need a warbot now that you have giant laser beams? Put me back in the ring, Jack, I can still fight!” He resumed pacing, and the sound ramped up to a buzz. Something was happening to my vision- the room was slowly growing distorted and staticky.

“Cerberus, something’s happening!” The robot stopped his muttering and pacing, though it was hard to tell through the interference. “I can barely see you!”

“That’s probably Queen Bossypants,” Cerberus stated matter-of-factly. “I don’t imagine you’ve got very much time left at all. Goddess damn, and I never got an affirmative on that field assignment!”

The words started to get lost in a hiss of static, and Cerberus’ pinstripe body became impossible to make out. I could only hope that he could still hear me. “You need to tell Glory that I’ve been replaced by an imposter! It’s not me, it’s Cognitum, and she’s going to try some crazy plan with a missile from the moon! And if she messes up, all of Equestria will be-”

“Destroyed!” shouted a strange voice. “Um… hello? Do rey fah so… oh crap.”

It was my voice. But it sounded strange, like it was being spoken through a tin. It reminded me of Watcher’s voice when he spoke on his spritebots.

“There!” boomed Cerberus’s voice. “Now we can talk a little more about that promotion without being interrupted!”

I would have looked for the source of the voice had I not been a little preoccupied staring straight ahead. This was the same room I had been peering into, but something was wrong with the camera. Instead of a haze of static, I was looking through some kind of fishbowl lens. And instead of the date and time tucked into the corner, I had the familiar vital readouts of an EFS. More interestingly, I found I could actually move the camera. I tilted up and down, seeing a door I couldn’t catch the first time and a pile of old records.

“Did you do something to the camera? The static’s gone, but now everything looks weird. And why do I have an Eyes Forward-”

I stopped as I noticed a darting blue bar in my EFS, moving to the door and throwing it open. In the doorframe stood an emaciated pegasus with worry etched on his familiar, ghoulish features. “There you are!” Windclop said sternly, glaring straight at… me? “You’re supposed to be in Afterlife! We need you now more than ever, ponies are starting to seriously consider evacuating to the tunnels, and I honestly can’t say I disagree with them! We need you there to help calm them down!”

“M-me?” I stammered. “Why? What happened? Has Meatlocker been targeted? Is everypony alright?”

Windclop snorted. “Glad to see you’ve finally dropped that ridiculous theory about Blackjack shooting lasers from the Core.” Huh? “No, we haven’t been targeted yet. But ponies are starting to worry about what the actual targets for those lasers were. We don’t have any concrete information to go on, but if things are bad we might not have time to confirm our worst fears. That’s why I need you to make everything seem normal until we figure out a solid plan of action.”

“Windclop, you sniveling jackass!” sneered Cerberus. I looked all around but I just couldn’t see him. “Take your tail out from between your nethers and stand tall! Jack is back, and she is ready to make up for a major backlog of ass to kick!”

“Enough, Cerberus! Blackjack is dead!” snapped Windclop, immediately looking even more tired. “She can’t save us anymore. We’ve got to rely on ourselves… and each other.”

“Windclop!” I shouted, “I don’t know how well you can hear me, but I’m not dead! Well, mostly, I think. I might- nevermind, it’s not important. What is important is that I get to Glory and P-21 and the others before my evil robot twin does!”

Windclop clearly heard me, because he gave the camera a funny look. Maybe Cerberus hooked it up to some speakers in the room? “Who did this?” asked Windclop, “Did you get Boing to mess around with your speech processor? Cerberus, I don’t have the patience for these games right now. Get to Afterlife, on the double. I’ve got too much to do to deal with this.”

“Wait!” I called out, but Windclop had already turned and galloped back out into the hall. I waited in the silence for a few gears to turn in my head. Literally, for all I knew.

“Cerberus,” I said to the seemingly empty room.

“Yes, Commander?” he answered.

“Did you download my brain into you?”

“Fortunately the file was incredibly compact!” he chirped blaringly. “I still had to delete one of my favourite Filly Holiday albums to make room, so this had better be worth it!”

By comparison I knew that I had been through weirder things. But it was still hard to process. Did this count as a step up or down from being a helpless consciousness in a computer network? “I… okay, um. This… doesn’t change anything. I still need to get to Glory, warn her that Cognitum is coming. After all, someone will have to believe that I’m not only still alive after three months in the deadliest place in the wasteland, but that my mind has been transferred to an overly patriotic guard robot after being sucked out of my body which has been taken by a copy of Princess Luna’s mind in a giant underground machine. Right?”

“Sir, yes sir!” shouted Cerberus. I flinched when his flamer flew towards the camera in salute. “Well, maybe not in Meatlocker. Ever since Hightower, the only rotting pukes that give me the time of day are Windclop and Pvt. Pretzel.”

Well, Windclop seemed convinced that I was some kind of prank on Cerberus’ part. “Can we talk to this other friend of yours, then? They might have some way to send a message before Cognitum reaches my friends.”

“Affirmative, Commander!” Cerberus tore out of the room and flew down the halls, causing ghouls to yelp and dive for cover to avoid him. “Permission to speak freely? I’ve been telling Pvt Pretzel all about the Hightower mission- on repeat -for the past three months, but the ungrateful cripple never seems properly impressed. I can’t wait for a chance to tell the story side by inside with Jack the Wrecker in the flesh- er, well, in the mind at least. Just try not to get all uppity when she calls you a scumbag. She’s just still sore about you trying to kill her.”
You can't do anything to disprove this theory until the new chapter comes out, and you probably won't be able to convince me otherwise until some time afterwards.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Fri Apr 04, 2014 12:56 am

Meleagridis wrote:
Chapter Reactions:
Called Coyotl=Coyote=Trickster. Can't believe I didn't see the blank connection, though...

Discord misses fingers and it is the best

"My power flashed, flickered, and went dark, leaving me in the depths where no one… not Boo, not Cognitum, not even Rampage or the Legate, could find me."
I look at the words below me and know it continues, but there is some part of me that can't shake the feeling that this is the chapter end, a shameless cliffhanger. Anyways, what a fight. An excellent example of scenery gorn slipped into an action sequence. And those meat-ponies? This raises so many interesting questions!

Dream, sister... Luuuuuna?

Not sure what to think about "Discord as Bard." He really seems to waffle back and forth between encouraging BJ to be the hero and gagging whenever she says hero-isms.

"“Well, that’s hardly what I was thinking,” Discord replied, indignantly.  “I was thinking that marmalade would go wonderfully on pizza.”
I laughed quietly.  “That does sound good, actually.  We should have that when we get done down here.”
Discord stared at me, skeptically, but then nudged my shoulder with a hoof.  “Deal.”"
Oh. My. I've become attached now. From this point forward, I will lose it if Discord doesn't make it.
I dunno, I've just never been able to pinpoint such a moment so clearly before.

" But if it so much as farted a spark at me, I’d whack it with a missile till it behaved"
I'd like to pause here to remember Sparklefarts, a wonderful curse word years before its time.

"“No.  No… please no…” Dawn whimpered as she struggled against the spear pinning her through the middle of the jar.  “Please…”"
Christ, man.

Aaaaaw yeah, immortal Snails. In his few lines of dialogue, I already like him again.

Surprised nobody mentioned the repairasprites [specifically, when Golden Vision Blackjack was tearing people apart with them]. Sure didn't seem all that easy to see Cog's point of view when BJ was... um, seeing from Cog's point of view. Tearing people apart with robot bugs isn't very sympathetic.

"The cavity that surrounded us was more immense than anything I’d ever seen, in any memory or in person. "
Shadowbolt Tower.

“Trottenheimer’s firing trajectory is unaccommodating for interception,”
I can't put a finger on why, but this makes me smile. The thought that Trottenheimer, one of my favourite supporting characters, is- even in death -still striving to keep things sane.

"Otherwise, even if we are lucky enough to intercept the projectile, it would simply become whatever form was last programmed into the Tokomare.”
Shit son. Can I just point out that we have no idea what this very brief and casual mention could possibly lead to? Other than something terrible and ultimately climactic?

“It’s not about you, Cognitum.”
Haha! Oh, wow. She learns. And better yet- she teaches!

“I… do.  I’m sorry, Blackjack.  The necromancy is all I have left now,” he whispered hollowly
Snails.
Honestly, I've been a little dissapointed by his silence so far. The very first thing he said when he got pulled in, despite being locked inside a TORTURE CHAMBER, was "Hey. You do that thing I asked you to do? Good. Also, don't listen to the robolady. She's crazy." It's so snarky, stout, and dripping with personality. But now he's saying that he doesn't have personality anymore or something. Maybe I'm just bitter- I like Snips.

"Then Discord turned his attention to Snips.  “This one isn’t even finished yet!  Let me see.”  And he snapped his claws.  From the storm, a cloud of tiny motes swept through the side of the jar and into the skull.  “There we go.  Really, you need to be careful with that dark magical stuff, old sport.”  He snapped his claws again, and the jar vanished in another flash."
Squeaky wheel gets the oil? I love any well done Discord scene, and this one certainly counts! It's great to get both a characteristically silly and over the top display of godly might with the sweat'n'stress of a good bluff. And... oh. Yeah, saw this coming. Now I'm getting all blubbery. Thrush, Rover, Fifi, Discord, in the span of... what? Five minutes?

“Fools!  Fools!  All of you, fools!  I am the Queen of the Night!  And this world is mine!” she crowed, her wings spreading as her red and black magic mane and tail snapped in the air behind her. "
Holy crap Viti saw this coming.
Why wouldn't he just say so?! If Blackjack just had mind-reading this could be so much easier.

"Amadi."
Hm.
Ah.

Afterthoughts:
SnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnipsSnips. A clever turn for Discord, and (I think) a great example of how he’s learned from Blackjack. At this point, Snips seems to be doomed to step into villain territory with no hope of return- FO:E is still a fantasy setting, and fantasy has a thing about bone-heads with powers over life and death. But… isn’t that just so boring? The standard solution would be to kill him, or at best to somehow give his spirit rest. But wouldn’t fixing him just be so much more original? Really looking forward to having a skeletal necromancer on Team Good Guy.
I… really hope those were holograms of everyone dying. But given how Cogs acts out in other spots of the chapter I can’t really put my faith in that.
Anybody else notice how Echo specifically said he didn’t want to die? When put next to the likes of Blackjack, Deus, Gorgon, Rampage, and all the other suicidally determined, it’s no wonder his inferiority complex hasn’t been helped.

Also, is this a typo?
"Okay.  Now my blasé attitude began to melt away as I saw, in the image, the bottom of the shaft below the projectile exploded."
She saw the projectile exploded, or explode?

replies:

SilentCarto wrote:Okay, wait just an apple-buckin' minute.
Ch. 65 Spoilers:
The whole "Maiden of the Stars" thing was total BS, right? A prophecy Vitiosus made up himself. And yet, he was able to pick out and target the mare who would ultimately become the vessel for Princess Luna.

There's still something screwy going on here...
When you’re as old as the prophecy, things do tend to break down. But sometimes even the timeless immortal can’t fight fate. I think it’s safe to say that both Viti and Cogs have opposed goals. Cogs wants a city to rise from the ashes of a star, Viti wants the star to rise from the ashes of a city. Or something. But I doubt he’s been honest with anyone.

I do think it’s strange how he seems to be on the exact same wavelength as Steel Rain. I wonder if they’ve been talking.

FeatherDust wrote:
Do we know if Blackjack even started going by that name before she got her cutie mark?  Actually does anyone recall where her cutie mark story was given?  I can't recall and searching for "cutie mark" is a needle in a haystack operation.
Maybe look for Hatches, or “her real name”
Nevermind, looks like Carto covered this already.

SilentCarto wrote:
FeatherDust wrote:Ghouls are essentially a soul wandering around with a decaying or even missing brain (that is to say, mind).
That's not entirely accurate. "You gotta shoot 'em in the head", right? The brain is the only weak spot on Canterlot ghouls (which are a totally different thing, I know.) While ghouls often have missing bits of soft tissue, the brain seems to be critical.
Hrm? I'm remembering something completely different. I thought you had to sever some part of them, head or limb, or otherwise disintegrate or rip to shreds. Like the Ghosts in Dead Money.

SilentCarto wrote:
Icy Shake wrote:“You know, I was never supposed to stay a villain.  My role was very clear.  Open antagonist to challenge Twilight Sparkle’s presuppositions of friendship and make her face having her friends turn on her at the outset, and then I was supposed to grow into a grudging ally of sorts.  I had the scripts, and I was quite looking forward to my time with Fluttershy.  Rehabilitation.  Yay,” Discord said sarcastically, pressing her hooves together and fluttering her eyes, then slumping.  “Only it never happened.  I stayed a statue, and things went… wrong.”  I arched a brow at her, and she rolled her eyes.  “Oh, don’t give me that.  I’m a spirit of chaos.  I’m a connoisseur of wrongness.

I . . . really don't care for this, but let's see how it goes.
I headcanon that Discord's knowledge of "what should have happened" is evidence that this is one of many possible worlds, each just a mirror's breadth away from the Equestria of Princess Twilight. I sort of think of this one as Equestria-235.

Pretty much my headcanon on the matter, too, but I still found his overly obvious exposition on the topic a bit obtrusive. Like a mechanical bull in a fine china shop. While I'm cool with Discord being aware and bard-like in his interpretation of life as a plotline, a good bard knows you don't explain to a character that they are a character. Not so bluntly, at least.

I wish I could say I'm not sorry but I can't:
Nothing. I couldn’t feel anything. Except for hurt and panic, but I tried to supress those by focusing on an all-encompassing numbness. Worse than having all of my organs and limbs and even my face swapped for metal replicas, I didn’t even have those precious few bits of flesh that helped me stay sane. In the complete dark, I started to miss mechanical whirring and nagging fuel bars as much as I had missed my heart. Is this what Deus felt like, trapped inside that tank?

I tried to move, to walk without walking. But this wasn’t about having legs that were smarter than me- I just didn’t have legs. I thought up and down, and tried anything that might take me in some sort of direction. What else could I do?

“Help!” I cried out into the dark. I expected an echo, but I’m not sure I could even hear my cry since I technically had no ears. Or mouth, for that matter. Maybe I was just thinking it. But I yelled nonetheless. “Echo? Spike? P-21? Glory?”

I knew plenty of ponies who knew their way around a computer system. But did they know it better than an insane program that was actually a computer, ensouled or not? “Anyone! Get me out of here!”

“You again!”

At first I was afraid Cognitum had returned to throw me in a dungeon in the place she had banished me to. But that was not her voice. I couldn’t see her disguising it as something so brash, male, and vaguely familiar. “Who is-” I began to ask.

“For the last time, I don’t care if you think you are Queen of the Goddessdamn Mole Rats! I take my orders from a superior officer, not some wet-behind-the-ears copycat with Pygmalion issues! You can stop calling this number because I have had it up to here with your bullshit! Loyal servant of her true majesty, signing off!”

“Wait!” I shouted, “Don’t go! I need your help!”

I was greeted with silence, which slowly began to fill with the doubt and fear I had been holding in check until now. My last chance had just hung up on-

“Who the hell is this?” replied the voice, “You’re coming through on the same channel as that frustrating Princess Wannabe, but you sound more like Corporal Whines. Name, rank, and serial number!”

No wonder he had been so hostile. I would be to, if I thought I was speaking to Cognitum. “My name is Blackjack! I’ve been trapped in some kind of system computer thingy, and I need to get-”

“Jack? Jack?! Good old Jack the Wrecker! I knew you wouldn’t let yourself get scrapped by a little megaspell!”

Vision returned to me, but it wasn’t the same scene as before. Instead of that terrifyingly massive chamber and the dessicated skeleton of the Tokomare, I was presented with a small room of unmatched quaintness. There was a workbench in the corner, strewn with metal tools. The walls were plastered with posters of pre-war singing sensations such as Sweetie Belle and Flank Sinatra. And in the center of the room, illuminated by a single artificial lamp hanging from the ceiling, was a three-armed hovering robot with a pinstripe paintjob.

“Robotic gutsy-class guard Cerberus ready for duty, sir!”

My nonexistent mouth hung open. “Cerberus? How did-”

“I knew it from the start, but when we got reports of heavy artillery coming from the Core I told them all: It’s good old Jack!” Cerberus cheered, lining up his plasma weapon as if tracking an invisible foe. “Still taking down pre-war prisons, or are you moving up in the ranks? Come on, commander, what’d you blow up? A sea serpent? A dragon? Was it another one of those bloated superghouls? By Her Majesty’s Sun, I wish I could have been there to see it!”

“No,” I whispered, “No, it wasn’t anything like that. Listen, Cerberus-”

“I was still fit for duty, you know! Gutsy-class units can work through anything! I’ll have you know I still had one fully functional arm!” He began to pace the length of his cramped room. “Sending me, a bona-fide military badass, out on a delivery run like some common messenger bot? Disgraceful!”

I was starting to wonder where the mute button was. I didn’t know it was possible to get a headache without having a head. It was better than the endless silence, but I still wished I could put a hoof over his mouth- er, speaker. “Okay, okay, I’m sorry. But I really need you to-”

“It’s because of Graves, isn’t it? Goddess dammit, I did my best! I tried! Why won’t anypony believe me?” Cerberus hovered up towards the camera. My view shook as he grabbed it with a clamp. “Commander, if you give me just one more chance I promise I won’t let you down! I swear on my honor as a soldier! I can still be a contender! I’ll do better!”

“Cerberus!” I snapped. He backed up from the camera, withdrawing his clamp like a wounded paw. I sighed, and as I did I could feel something strange in the void. Like a high pitched sound that reverberated right through me. “I’m sorry, but I really don’t know how much time I have to talk to you. I really need you to get a message to Glory.”

“Delivery service again? Do you not need a warbot now that you have giant laser beams? Put me back in the ring, Jack, I can still fight!” He resumed pacing, and the sound ramped up to a buzz. Something was happening to my vision- the room was slowly growing distorted and staticky.

“Cerberus, something’s happening!” The robot stopped his muttering and pacing, though it was hard to tell through the interference. “I can barely see you!”

“That’s probably Queen Bossypants,” Cerberus stated matter-of-factly. “I don’t imagine you’ve got very much time left at all. Goddess damn, and I never got an affirmative on that field assignment!”

The words started to get lost in a hiss of static, and Cerberus’ pinstripe body became impossible to make out. I could only hope that he could still hear me. “You need to tell Glory that I’ve been replaced by an imposter! It’s not me, it’s Cognitum, and she’s going to try some crazy plan with a missile from the moon! And if she messes up, all of Equestria will be-”

“Destroyed!” shouted a strange voice. “Um… hello? Do rey fah so… oh crap.”

It was my voice. But it sounded strange, like it was being spoken through a tin. It reminded me of Watcher’s voice when he spoke on his spritebots.

“There!” boomed Cerberus’s voice. “Now we can talk a little more about that promotion without being interrupted!”

I would have looked for the source of the voice had I not been a little preoccupied staring straight ahead. This was the same room I had been peering into, but something was wrong with the camera. Instead of a haze of static, I was looking through some kind of fishbowl lens. And instead of the date and time tucked into the corner, I had the familiar vital readouts of an EFS. More interestingly, I found I could actually move the camera. I tilted up and down, seeing a door I couldn’t catch the first time and a pile of old records.

“Did you do something to the camera? The static’s gone, but now everything looks weird. And why do I have an Eyes Forward-”

I stopped as I noticed a darting blue bar in my EFS, moving to the door and throwing it open. In the doorframe stood an emaciated pegasus with worry etched on his familiar, ghoulish features. “There you are!” Windclop said sternly, glaring straight at… me? “You’re supposed to be in Afterlife! We need you now more than ever, ponies are starting to seriously consider evacuating to the tunnels, and I honestly can’t say I disagree with them! We need you there to help calm them down!”

“M-me?” I stammered. “Why? What happened? Has Meatlocker been targeted? Is everypony alright?”

Windclop snorted. “Glad to see you’ve finally dropped that ridiculous theory about Blackjack shooting lasers from the Core.” Huh? “No, we haven’t been targeted yet. But ponies are starting to worry about what the actual targets for those lasers were. We don’t have any concrete information to go on, but if things are bad we might not have time to confirm our worst fears. That’s why I need you to make everything seem normal until we figure out a solid plan of action.”

“Windclop, you sniveling jackass!” sneered Cerberus. I looked all around but I just couldn’t see him. “Take your tail out from between your nethers and stand tall! Jack is back, and she is ready to make up for a major backlog of ass to kick!”

“Enough, Cerberus! Blackjack is dead!” snapped Windclop, immediately looking even more tired. “She can’t save us anymore. We’ve got to rely on ourselves… and each other.”

“Windclop!” I shouted, “I don’t know how well you can hear me, but I’m not dead! Well, mostly, I think. I might- nevermind, it’s not important. What is important is that I get to Glory and P-21 and the others before my evil robot twin does!”

Windclop clearly heard me, because he gave the camera a funny look. Maybe Cerberus hooked it up to some speakers in the room? “Who did this?” asked Windclop, “Did you get Boing to mess around with your speech processor? Cerberus, I don’t have the patience for these games right now. Get to Afterlife, on the double. I’ve got too much to do to deal with this.”

“Wait!” I called out, but Windclop had already turned and galloped back out into the hall. I waited in the silence for a few gears to turn in my head. Literally, for all I knew.

“Cerberus,” I said to the seemingly empty room.

“Yes, Commander?” he answered.

“Did you download my brain into you?”

“Fortunately the file was incredibly compact!” he chirped blaringly. “I still had to delete one of my favourite Filly Holiday albums to make room, so this had better be worth it!”

By comparison I knew that I had been through weirder things. But it was still hard to process. Did this count as a step up or down from being a helpless consciousness in a computer network? “I… okay, um. This… doesn’t change anything. I still need to get to Glory, warn her that Cognitum is coming. After all, someone will have to believe that I’m not only still alive after three months in the deadliest place in the wasteland, but that my mind has been transferred to an overly patriotic guard robot after being sucked out of my body which has been taken by a copy of Princess Luna’s mind in a giant underground machine. Right?”

“Sir, yes sir!” shouted Cerberus. I flinched when his flamer flew towards the camera in salute. “Well, maybe not in Meatlocker. Ever since Hightower, the only rotting pukes that give me the time of day are Windclop and Pvt. Pretzel.”

Well, Windclop seemed convinced that I was some kind of prank on Cerberus’ part. “Can we talk to this other friend of yours, then? They might have some way to send a message before Cognitum reaches my friends.”

“Affirmative, Commander!” Cerberus tore out of the room and flew down the halls, causing ghouls to yelp and dive for cover to avoid him. “Permission to speak freely? I’ve been telling Pvt Pretzel all about the Hightower mission- on repeat -for the past three months, but the ungrateful cripple never seems properly impressed. I can’t wait for a chance to tell the story side by inside with Jack the Wrecker in the flesh- er, well, in the mind at least. Just try not to get all uppity when she calls you a scumbag. She’s just still sore about you trying to kill her.”
You can't do anything to disprove this theory until the new chapter comes out, and you probably won't be able to convince me otherwise until some time afterwards.
Ah, thank you.  Something always seems to get through…

Meleagridis wrote:Shadowbolt Tower.
Hm, point, but that's a tall tower.  This is a large open space.  Blackjack's wording may be (or may not be; this place is big) inaccurate, but I think that she can be forgiven.

Meleagridis wrote:I do think it’s strange how he seems to be on the exact same wavelength as Steel Rain. I wonder if they’ve been talking.

Brain, why do you do this?  For those of you not in my head, my inner shipper has just started looking at the two of them and humming thoughtfully.

Meleagridis wrote:I WISH I COULD SAY I'M NOT SORRY BUT I CAN'T:
Hee!  :D
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Stormhopper on Fri Apr 04, 2014 3:59 am

Blackjack needs to survive! She cant of died just now! She still has a nutty cyborg goddess and her crazy on again off again boyfriend to put down!

Melea's theory is plausible, all robots having direct connection to the Core (even stated earlier in the story) so Cerberus could of downloaded a copy of BJ's brain through transfer of the original or even before Steel Rain blew up the main console!

Just that page worth of story has given me hope for this story!

Oh and im a new guy around here, howdy and all that

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Fri Apr 04, 2014 8:12 am

O. Hinds wrote:
Meleagridis wrote:I do think it’s strange how he seems to be on the exact same wavelength as Steel Rain. I wonder if they’ve been talking.

Brain, why do you do this?  For those of you not in my head, my inner shipper has just started looking at the two of them and humming thoughtfully.
Female shall desire female, male shall desire male, and unholy coupling between the species will commence where she travels!

“Five minutes?” Vitiosus asked.
“Fine,” Steel Rain replied...


Bow chicka bow wow!  Twilight crazy 
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Fri Apr 04, 2014 8:35 am

Meleagridis wrote:Hrm? I'm remembering something completely different. I thought you had to sever some part of them, head or limb, or otherwise disintegrate or rip to shreds. Like the Ghosts in Dead Money.
Canterlot Ghouls, you mean? I don't think losing a limb does more than slow them down. FOE mentioned "dismemberment", but then went on to say that decapitation was the standard solution. I took that to mean that, unlike Ghost People, killing them would require removing more than just one limb. Now, you're right that they won't pull themselves together like the T-1000 after being disintegrated or blown into chunky salsa, but I don't consider gross physical destruction to be a "weak point".

*Edit: I may be totally off-base on this, but I seem to recall that removing a significant portion of a C. Ghoul's body renders them unable to rise until the missing part is reunited with the body. Does that sound familiar to anyone else?

The point of my post, though, was that regular ghouls are pretty much vulnerable to any injury that would kill a living creature. They're just immortal, radiation resistant, and lack the physical need for food, water, or sleep. And probably air, though I don't think that one's been tested on-screen.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

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