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[GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Meleagridis on Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:24 am

Because it's in SPAAAAACE, where it can be interrupted with SPACE RADIATION.
But in all seriousness, I think it's a targeting issue. In the time it would take to find the exact spot to target, Horizons might be ready to launch. That's assuming the thing even works in space.

Hinds: Yeah, ED-E expy with a Hippocratic bot.

swicked wrote:
Pretty much, but I already basically admitted to as much earlier, so no points for you.
There are points? If that's the case, I'm going to jot down everything I see in the next chapter that looks to have something wicked behind it. I want a running tally.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Derpmind on Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:36 am

JadedPony wrote:Question: If the Twilight Fan club has a death beam, why don't they just turn it around and blast the crap out of the moon base BEFORE Cogjack even gets to it? I mean, the moon doesn't actually go away when the sun comes up we just can't see it most of the time in the day. They could have solved the entire problem by now. Tom would be fine, but all the stuff used to launch Tom would be molten slag.

Might be that Celestia One operates by using the atmosphere to bend light. But besides that, it's just a really, really, realllly long way to the moon. Because energy over distance is still a thing for magic, that means it would take way much more energy to mess with light on the moon from all the way down groundside. And I don't need to do the math to know that the difference between the energy needed to make a death-laser on a planet's surface and the energy to send a death-laser to the freaking moon is way big.

Another sensible contingency plan would be to send some infiltrators into the core to blow up or sabotage the Tom-catchers, but that wouldn't matter unless everything else fails. And something something something, too tired to think again.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vexd on Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:58 am

JadedPony wrote:
swicked wrote:
Scienza wrote:
swicked wrote:A decent amount of my absurdity ends up being vetoed to prevent from spoiling a scene and, unfortunately, the majority of them are contextual or not funny-enough to make decent skits (well, unless they are, in which case I make them). I think I remember Somber suggesting that I could make some kinda outtakes section at the end of the chapter if I wanted, but I dunno.
Do eet.
Maybe in the future, I had a problem this last chapter. All the notes I took got destroyed. Cursed, you know?
See, I like to take notes on stuff like that in notepad since it clears all weird formatting issues, links, images, no squiggly lines shown for spelling or grammar errors and notepad takes up almost no memory or time to load.
It's only drawback, in fact, is completely losing everything if my computer crashes.
The only thing I can remember suggesting that got vetoed (because Bronode really liked it) was Blackjack's plan to have P-21 sneak up behind cognitum and stick a superglued bomb to her back. She states "Yes, I've been making plans on how to defeat myself."
I really, really wanted to add "And yes, they all involve a sexy stallion shoving something sticky in my backside. I figure, why mess with tradition?" Spike

All you would really need to do to defeat Cogjack is find a group of otherwise peaceful ponies, give them guns they have no idea how to use and tell them that Cogjack wants to be their friend. Nature will take it's course and she'll be shot so full of holes from accidental friendly fire she'll be easy to defeat. She is in Blackjack's body after all.
And pretty much kill the fetus on board in the process
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by JadedPony on Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:23 am

Vexd wrote:
JadedPony wrote:

All you would really need to do to defeat Cogjack is find a group of otherwise peaceful ponies, give them guns they have no idea how to use and tell them that Cogjack wants to be their friend. Nature will take it's course and she'll be shot so full of holes from accidental friendly fire she'll be easy to defeat. She is in Blackjack's body after all.
And pretty much kill the fetus on board in the process

I thought everyone shot BJ in the face. The fetus would be unharmed! It's the perfect fool proof plan! 

Also, why doesn't Golden Blood call up Golden-Bot and tell him what's coming? The pegasus have radio, hell, even blackjack has a radio, it wouldn't be that hard to send a signal. Even if it involved a few seconds of delay between responses, it would be worth it to get Golden Bot to lock down Tom or even fire it into space before she gets there. Lots of options. Non-climactic ones, but still options if you care about saving the world...
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:18 am

JadedPony wrote:Question: If the Twilight Fan club has a death beam, why don't they just turn it around and blast the crap out of the moon base BEFORE Cogjack even gets to it? I mean, the moon doesn't actually go away when the sun comes up we just can't see it most of the time in the day. They could have solved the entire problem by now. Tom would be fine, but all the stuff used to launch Tom would be molten slag.
Well, that assumes it CAN aim up. It was designed for ground attack -- they'd probably have to completely rewrite the targeting logic to calculate targets not on the surface of Equus. I'm sure it could be done, given a sufficiently skilled programmer (possibly with the help of an arcane researcher), but I doubt it could be done before Horizons fired.

JadedPony wrote:Also, why doesn't Golden Blood call up Golden-Bot and tell him what's coming? The pegasus have radio, hell, even blackjack has a radio, it wouldn't be that hard to send a signal. Even if it involved a few seconds of delay between responses, it would be worth it to get Golden Bot to lock down Tom or even fire it into space before she gets there. Lots of options. Non-climactic ones, but still options if you care about saving the world...
Well, Goldenbot is a copy of angry world-destroyer Goldie before he realized what was manipulating him. There's no way he's going to hold his fire OR throw away his one shot. If the Lunar Palace has exterior defenses, they're probably already online anyway since Horizons is so close to firing. I'm not sure what else he could do about Cogs.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Scienza on Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:50 am

JadedPony wrote:Question: If the Twilight Fan club has a death beam, why don't they just turn it around and blast the crap out of the moon base BEFORE Cogjack even gets to it? I mean, the moon doesn't actually go away when the sun comes up we just can't see it most of the time in the day. They could have solved the entire problem by now. Tom would be fine, but all the stuff used to launch Tom would be molten slag.
Well, since as far as I can tell, Celestia One operates by focusing the light of the sun onto a point, it doesn't seem that it would be something that they could point upwards. Even in a situation of an eclipse, I'm assuming that their level of control isn't great enough to allow the focusing effect in a radius beyond that of the moon, which is why it seems solely able to strike ground and airborne targets (the "lens" of magic would be located in the atmosphere). There's also the problem that for the most part, whenever the sun is up (and Celestia One able to function), the planet is in the way of directly hitting the moon.

On that note, how does Celestia One function? My statements above are predicated on the assumption that it's basically like a big lens or light-funnel of some sort that concentrates solar radiation onto a single target, but there could be other mechanisms. One that's kinda fun would be some sort of localized manipulation of the magnetosphere so that the full blast of solar radiation was channeled onto the target.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Fri Sep 19, 2014 10:17 am

....reading about Ghouls getting frisky both terrifies and intrigues me

Still a better love story than Twilight
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Fri Sep 19, 2014 10:34 am

Meleagridis wrote:Hinds: Yeah, ED-E expy with a Hippocratic bot.
Neat. Though why Hippocratic specifically?

Vinylshadow wrote:....reading about Ghouls getting frisky both terrifies and intrigues me

Still a better love story than Twilight
The Daily Unlife?
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Fri Sep 19, 2014 10:58 am

Sure, let's call it that - cue weekly Magazine in the vein of "Wingboner"

Which should totally be a thing
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:52 pm

Scienza wrote:On that note, how does Celestia One function? My statements above are predicated on the assumption that it's basically like a big lens or light-funnel of some sort that concentrates solar radiation onto a single target, but there could be other mechanisms. One that's kinda fun would be some sort of localized manipulation of the magnetosphere so that the full blast of solar radiation was channeled onto the target.
Well, my headcanon (which I stated on the previous page) is that it takes any continuous, unbroken columns of light going from the sun to the earth (or, at least, any unbroken columns that get below cloud-cover) and pours magic into them to amp there. It's not focusing anything. It is adding energy to the energy from the sun via magic.
At the very least, it doesn't work above cloud-cover, otherwise I can't imagine why they wouldn't just bombard the Enclave's above-cloud military bases prior to their war machines coming down to the surface.
This might be the sort of thing Somber would describe the workings of in PH, though, so we'll just have to see if Blackjack gets curious and asks Homage or that one Twilight Society medic guy about it. I always forget his name.

Vinylshadow wrote:Still a better love story than Twilight
You're annoying-enough when you aren't referencing ancient memes.

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Scienza on Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:59 pm

swicked wrote:
Scienza wrote:On that note, how does Celestia One function? My statements above are predicated on the assumption that it's basically like a big lens or light-funnel of some sort that concentrates solar radiation onto a single target, but there could be other mechanisms. One that's kinda fun would be some sort of localized manipulation of the magnetosphere so that the full blast of solar radiation was channeled onto the target.
Well, my headcanon (which I stated on the previous page) is that it takes any continuous, unbroken columns of light going from the sun to the earth (or, at least, any unbroken columns that get below cloud-cover) and pours magic into them to amp there. It's not focusing anything. It is adding energy to the energy from the sun via magic.
At the very least, it doesn't work above cloud-cover, otherwise I can't imagine why they wouldn't just bombard the Enclave's above-cloud military bases prior to their war machines coming down to the surface.
This might be the sort of thing Somber would describe the workings of in PH, though, so we'll just have to see if Blackjack gets curious and asks Homage or that one Twilight Society medic guy about it. I always forget his name.
Maybe it's a targeting issue. The megaspell itself is above the cloud cover, but the ponies operating it are below it. The cloud cover was originally meant to obscure the pegasus cities to prevent the zebras from targeting them with megaspells, so perhaps that's part of the reason why the Twilight Society can't just unleash 18 kilotons of sun on the birdies. It is a lot harder to accurately target a city that you can't see.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:03 pm

In my mind, Celestia 1 sucks in Sunlight, amplifies it, and fires it at a target

Although that would require multiple C1 towers to cover more area...

MASEBS(?)/SPP Towers or something
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:07 pm

Scienza wrote:
swicked wrote:
Scienza wrote:On that note, how does Celestia One function? My statements above are predicated on the assumption that it's basically like a big lens or light-funnel of some sort that concentrates solar radiation onto a single target, but there could be other mechanisms. One that's kinda fun would be some sort of localized manipulation of the magnetosphere so that the full blast of solar radiation was channeled onto the target.
Well, my headcanon (which I stated on the previous page) is that it takes any continuous, unbroken columns of light going from the sun to the earth (or, at least, any unbroken columns that get below cloud-cover) and pours magic into them to amp there. It's not focusing anything. It is adding energy to the energy from the sun via magic.
At the very least, it doesn't work above cloud-cover, otherwise I can't imagine why they wouldn't just bombard the Enclave's above-cloud military bases prior to their war machines coming down to the surface.
This might be the sort of thing Somber would describe the workings of in PH, though, so we'll just have to see if Blackjack gets curious and asks Homage or that one Twilight Society medic guy about it. I always forget his name.
Maybe it's a targeting issue. The megaspell itself is above the cloud cover, but the ponies operating it are below it. The cloud cover was originally meant to obscure the pegasus cities to prevent the zebras from targeting them with megaspells, so perhaps that's part of the reason why the Twilight Society can't just unleash 18 kilotons of sun on the birdies. It is a lot harder to accurately target a city that you can't see.
How do they "see" anything? The megaspell chamber is indoors and they can wield the beams with incredible accuracy. During the battle of Fillydelphia they specifically were striking down the most dangerous units on both sides, trying to keep the sides relatively even so that they'd continue destroying each other for as long as possible.
I would think this means they easily can see anything that they can hit.


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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:23 pm

Scrying spells maybe?

Eesh, if a society like the Twilight Society existed in a Fallout Game I've played, I'd probably go out of my way to eradicate them...

Morning Glory:

And then Glorybra
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Scienza on Fri Sep 19, 2014 3:27 pm

swicked wrote:
Scienza wrote:
swicked wrote:
Scienza wrote:On that note, how does Celestia One function? My statements above are predicated on the assumption that it's basically like a big lens or light-funnel of some sort that concentrates solar radiation onto a single target, but there could be other mechanisms. One that's kinda fun would be some sort of localized manipulation of the magnetosphere so that the full blast of solar radiation was channeled onto the target.
Well, my headcanon (which I stated on the previous page) is that it takes any continuous, unbroken columns of light going from the sun to the earth (or, at least, any unbroken columns that get below cloud-cover) and pours magic into them to amp there. It's not focusing anything. It is adding energy to the energy from the sun via magic.
At the very least, it doesn't work above cloud-cover, otherwise I can't imagine why they wouldn't just bombard the Enclave's above-cloud military bases prior to their war machines coming down to the surface.
This might be the sort of thing Somber would describe the workings of in PH, though, so we'll just have to see if Blackjack gets curious and asks Homage or that one Twilight Society medic guy about it. I always forget his name.
Maybe it's a targeting issue. The megaspell itself is above the cloud cover, but the ponies operating it are below it. The cloud cover was originally meant to obscure the pegasus cities to prevent the zebras from targeting them with megaspells, so perhaps that's part of the reason why the Twilight Society can't just unleash 18 kilotons of sun on the birdies. It is a lot harder to accurately target a city that you can't see.
How do they "see" anything? The megaspell chamber is indoors and they can wield the beams with incredible accuracy. During the battle of Fillydelphia they specifically were striking down the most dangerous units on both sides, trying to keep the sides relatively even so that they'd continue destroying each other for as long as possible.
I would think this means they easily can see anything that can hit.
True, but I'm assuming that they need some idea of their target's location when channeling a strike. Obscuring cloud everywhere makes that a bit more difficult. This also relies a bit on a headcanon of mine which states that most pegasus cloud cities are mobile to some degree. Not to a degree where it matters on a moment-to-moment basis but enough that it means that pre-war maps aren't going to reflect their current locations.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:42 pm

Vinylshadow wrote:Sure, let's call it that - cue weekly Magazine in the vein of "Wingboner"

Which should totally be a thing
I think that you may have misunderstood. The Daily Unlife is a story.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Fri Sep 19, 2014 4:51 pm

O. Hinds wrote:
Vinylshadow wrote:Sure, let's call it that - cue weekly Magazine in the vein of "Wingboner"

Which should totally be a thing
I think that you may have misunderstood.  The Daily Unlife is a story.

...The scary thing is, that story popped into my mind when I mentioned frisky ghouls...I had forgotten the title.

"Flitter" is also a good story.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Meleagridis on Fri Sep 19, 2014 5:18 pm

O. Hinds wrote:
Neat.  Though why Hippocratic specifically?
This guy:

O. Hinds wrote:
Vinylshadow wrote:Sure, let's call it that - cue weekly Magazine in the vein of "Wingboner"

Which should totally be a thing
I think that you may have misunderstood.  The Daily Unlife is a story.
Was it ever confirmed whether or not ghouls could have kids?

Scienza wrote:This also relies a bit on a headcanon of mine which states that most pegasus cloud cities are mobile to some degree. Not to a degree where it matters on a moment-to-moment basis but enough that it means that pre-war maps aren't going to reflect their current locations.
Don't think that's headcanon. Pretty sure the story said that, after covering the skies, they moved all their cities so none got hit.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Scienza on Fri Sep 19, 2014 5:25 pm

Meleagridis wrote:
Scienza wrote:This also relies a bit on a headcanon of mine which states that most pegasus cloud cities are mobile to some degree. Not to a degree where it matters on a moment-to-moment basis but enough that it means that pre-war maps aren't going to reflect their current locations.
Don't think that's headcanon. Pretty sure the story said that, after covering the skies, they moved all their cities so none got hit.
So, my headcanon was confirmed before I even knew it. Ossim.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by SilentCarto on Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:04 pm

Scienza wrote:On that note, how does Celestia One function?
Just fine, thanks! Spike

Seriously, though, we have no information at all about the mechanism for Celestia One. I tend to subscribe to the "magic lens" theory, myself.

As for whether it COULD fire on the Moon, I think it could if the spell were told "how" (and if the target were in direct sunlight). However, as the Megaspell Facility Status in chapter 26 indicated, megaspells are targeted by latitude and longitude on the surface of Equus. I suspect that the spell is actually targeted by vector relative to the launch site -- a heading, elevation, and distance (and, in the case of C1, a pitch and roll angle to orient the "lens" correctly.) The latitude-longitude inputs are probably a "user friendly" feature so you don't have to break out a globe and do geometry to work out your target. If so, a targeting subroutine would compare the target point on the planet's surface against the megaspell chamber's location to derive the vector to the target. If that's correct, then there's nothing stopping you from directly feeding the spell a target vector instead, as long as you knew how to bypass the targeting calculator. But that would require accessing the "source code" of the megaspell matrix, which is why you'd need an expert's help and plenty of time.

As for targeting talismans, they may or may not help. Thanks to Psalm, we know the talisman's ID code is provided to a specific megaspell chamber, and they make some kind of connection. It's not clear, though, whether it acts as a homing beacon that the megaspell can lock onto to derive its vector directly, or if the talisman just feeds its GPS coordinates into the target calculator.

Scienza wrote:Maybe it's a targeting issue. The megaspell itself is above the cloud cover, but the ponies operating it are below it. The cloud cover was originally meant to obscure the pegasus cities to prevent the zebras from targeting them with megaspells, so perhaps that's part of the reason why the Twilight Society can't just unleash 18 kilotons of sun on the birdies. It is a lot harder to accurately target a city that you can't see.
Well, the Implosion spell at Shadowbolt Tower indicates that pony megaspells generally have no transit time or apparent line of effect from source to target; the spell simply manifests at the targeted point. But zebra megaspells are carried by missiles, which are a little different. Assuming they use GPS or intertial guidance, and I think they do, closing the sky was a measure to blind any zebra spies so they couldn't call in targeting changes when the cities moved. The missiles aimed at stationary cities could cheerfully fire blind, just like Equestrian megaspells.

Scienza wrote:So, my headcanon was confirmed before I even knew it. Ossim.
I believe that's called "remembering". Twilight Sparkle


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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Caoimhe on Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:06 pm

So that was neat. I'm really don't like the "everyone protagonist has ever met unites for the climax" trope because it makes the world seem small, glorifies the protagonist too much and is a little unreasonable with how strangers would decide to instantly work together but I like where this is going.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vergil on Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:30 pm

I'm pretty much right with you on that.

Go on...
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by O. Hinds on Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:39 pm

Meleagridis wrote:
This guy:
Ah. :)

Meleagridis wrote:Was it ever confirmed whether or not ghouls could have kids?
I highly doubt they can. I don't recall any explicit information one way or the other, though.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Caoimhe on Fri Sep 19, 2014 10:13 pm

Vergil wrote:I'm pretty much right with you on that.

Go on...

Your loss!

Okay, so don't take this as saying I hate the story now or anything (and I'll make this clear - Somber is not a bad writer and I don't think Somber is a bad writer and Somber is free to write anything he wants and I will enjoy it) but this is just my opinion on this type of plot device.

The end of vanilla FoE was ruined by doing this. Throughout the entire story, Pippers is already played up to be a such an amazing hero and Oh My God she will save the world and is literally the (ugh) "lightbringer." By pretty much the middle of the story, her character arc is finished and she knows what she has to do to beat the bad guys and save the world. Adding "all your friends are here and support you!" adds nothing at all since her arc is done and she's going to do whatever it takes regardless. If anything it's a poor excuse to set up set pieces and easymode to reflect on all the people she's met and what they're doing. Littlepip is NOT a leader, she's a self-insert guide to the world and some of her decisions are very poor and only accomplished by her friends or the influence of her friends. If anything, throwing all these other folks in negates her importance as world saviour and makes them all seem like mindless followers of the Cult of Littlepip since you have a lot better leadership roles there that could organize this whole shabang other than some wimp who has barely lived in their universe for more than a couple months. Most of the side characters barely even know Littlepip and all of a sudden they are willing to put their lives on the line for some vague plan from someone who was only able to put the pieces together. Of course the climax being that awful third person perspective with a bunch of characters we really don't care about doing things based off singular traits harmed the impact immensely.

That's vanilla, now on to PH.

Simply put, PH has way too many characters for this situation. This is great for the story itself because it fleshes the world out immensely by showing many different personalities with different motivations and problems. Throwing them all together reduces their motivation and personalities to "wants to help BJ with this plan and save the hoof and also has some traits from when BJ met them previously." Think of it this way, group all the people you've ever met, not just friends, but casual acquaintances, then just have them talk to each other. Not every one of these people would be extroverted enough to casually gab to someone they've never met before on a social level. Ever been at a work or school orientation? It'd be the same thing. You'd all have some goal, but you're all different people who may know some folks better than others, - you wouldn't instantly start forming bonds and connections, shit's gonna be awkward and you're more likely going to stay in your existing groups for the most part at best and have personality conflicts at worst.

Now, like I said before, Littlepip's character evolution pretty much ended in the middle of vanilla, BJ's is still evolving at this point and has been absent in the lives of a lot of these dudes throughout the story and existed only as a vague idea of Security to a lot of them. I don't expect everyone, especially some of the gangs, to drop what they're doing to round up to support BJ and her cause. Heck, we already have Coggie AS Blackjack stirring the shit, there's not a whole hell of a lot of reason to trust real Blackjack on this scale. There's a certain lack of verisimilitude in all this.

Since we have all these folks together though, we have to touch upon them. Unfortunately we don't have the time or length or interest level to know too much, because we have so many. When writing about this, we have to resort to "flattening" them out to either what impact they had on Blackjack the most, or a very simple way of showing what they were doing from then to now. This greatly simplifies the archetypes these characters were meant to present and makes a bunch of them nearly identical, despite having personalities that could be incompatible with others. Ever see a movie version of a book and feel the character you knew well from the written word wasn't "all there" or too simple? Same thing, really.

This harms BJ as protagonist, too. Because she isn't a great leader either and, most problematic - she's self aware of it. We kinda half to alter her character a bit to manage all these folks.

Best example I can give is the situation with Psalm. In my opinion, BJ's conversation with her is very out of character because BJ isn't mentally strong enough from what we know about her to give these words of encouragement to Psalm. Because we don't have a lot of time and a lot of other folks to meet, we have to simplify both of them. I'd also say the final part with Glory ends too quickly with her doing something that doesn't really fit into her character either. She's growing to be more comfortable with sexuality, yeah, but she's also taking advantage of someone in a downtrodden state in an assertive action that's more in line with Blackjack. If this was played more with Glory forcing herself to be more assertive to cope with the reeeaaaallly massive motivation change that just happened to her I could see it working on the idea that it's not health for her, but it's a little out of place.

Overall though, the "everyone ever is now here" makes the world seem much smaller. Blackjack just happened upon all these guys and influenced their lives for better or worse, but now we've scaled the world down to just the voices and none of the scenery.

Blackjack states that after it's all over she just wants to settle down and have a family, but even with a massive threat to all the land, would even be plausible after everyone she's ever met in the Hoof gives up their day to day state of being, and risk their actual lives for one pony?

Sorry for the stream of consciousness unedited rambling. I'll say again: Somber is not a bad writer and I don't think Somber is a bad writer and Somber is free to write anything he wants and I will enjoy it! :D


Afterthought after posting this: One of the things I failed to even consider is that - duh - the story is serialized, a sprawling serial tale is always going to be enormously difficult to end, especially when so much has been set up. Also, I shouldn't read PH on planes when I've only had 3 hours of sleep and my focus is handicapped.


Last edited by Caoimhe on Fri Sep 19, 2014 10:21 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added afterthought)
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Exodus Hero on Sat Sep 20, 2014 6:49 am

Caoimhe wrote:
Vergil wrote:I'm pretty much right with you on that.

Go on...

Your loss!

Okay, so don't take this as saying I hate the story now or anything (and I'll make this clear - Somber is not a bad writer and I don't think Somber is a bad writer and Somber is free to write anything he wants and I will enjoy it) but this is just my opinion on this type of plot device.

The end of vanilla FoE was ruined by doing this. Throughout the entire story, Pippers is already played up to be a such an amazing hero and Oh My God she will save the world and is literally the (ugh) "lightbringer." By pretty much the middle of the story, her character arc is finished and she knows what she has to do to beat the bad guys and save the world. Adding "all your friends are here and support you!" adds nothing at all since her arc is done and she's going to do whatever it takes regardless. If anything it's a poor excuse to set up set pieces and easymode to reflect on all the people she's met and what they're doing. Littlepip is NOT a leader, she's a self-insert guide to the world and some of her decisions are very poor and only accomplished by her friends or the influence of her friends. If anything, throwing all these other folks in negates her importance as world saviour and makes them all seem like mindless followers of the Cult of Littlepip since you have a lot better leadership roles there that could organize this whole shabang other than some wimp who has barely lived in their universe for more than a couple months. Most of the side characters barely even know Littlepip and all of a sudden they are willing to put their lives on the line for some vague plan from someone who was only able to put the pieces together. Of course the climax being that awful third person perspective with a bunch of characters we really don't care about doing things based off singular traits harmed the impact immensely.

That's vanilla, now on to PH.

Simply put, PH has way too many characters for this situation. This is great for the story itself because it fleshes the world out immensely by showing many different personalities with different motivations and problems. Throwing them all together reduces their motivation and personalities to "wants to help BJ with this plan and save the hoof and also has some traits from when BJ met them previously." Think of it this way, group all the people you've ever met, not just friends, but casual acquaintances, then just have them talk to each other. Not every one of these people would be extroverted enough to casually gab to someone they've never met before on a social level. Ever been at a work or school orientation? It'd be the same thing. You'd all have some goal, but you're all different people who may know some folks better than others, - you wouldn't instantly start forming bonds and connections, shit's gonna be awkward and you're more likely going to stay in your existing groups for the most part at best and have personality conflicts at worst.

Now, like I said before, Littlepip's character evolution pretty much ended in the middle of vanilla, BJ's is still evolving at this point and has been absent in the lives of a lot of these dudes throughout the story and existed only as a vague idea of Security to a lot of them. I don't expect everyone, especially some of the gangs, to drop what they're doing to round up to support BJ and her cause. Heck, we already have Coggie AS Blackjack stirring the shit, there's not a whole hell of a lot of reason to trust real Blackjack on this scale. There's a certain lack of verisimilitude in all this.

Since we have all these folks together though, we have to touch upon them. Unfortunately we don't have the time or length or interest level to know too much, because we have so many. When writing about this, we have to resort to "flattening" them out to either what impact they had on Blackjack the most, or a very simple way of showing what they were doing from then to now. This greatly simplifies the archetypes these characters were meant to present and makes a bunch of them nearly identical, despite having personalities that could be incompatible with others. Ever see a movie version of a book and feel the character you knew well from the written word wasn't "all there" or too simple? Same thing, really.

This harms BJ as protagonist, too. Because she isn't a great leader either and, most problematic - she's self aware of it. We kinda half to alter her character a bit to manage all these folks.

Best example I can give is the situation with Psalm. In my opinion, BJ's conversation with her is very out of character because BJ isn't mentally strong enough from what we know about her to give these words of encouragement to Psalm. Because we don't have a lot of time and a lot of other folks to meet, we have to simplify both of them. I'd also say the final part with Glory ends too quickly with her doing something that doesn't really fit into her character either. She's growing to be more comfortable with sexuality, yeah, but she's also taking advantage of someone in a downtrodden state in an assertive action that's more in line with Blackjack. If this was played more with Glory forcing herself to be more assertive to cope with the reeeaaaallly massive motivation change that just happened to her I could see it working on the idea that it's not health for her, but it's a little out of place.

Overall though, the "everyone ever is now here" makes the world seem much smaller. Blackjack just happened upon all these guys and influenced their lives for better or worse, but now we've scaled the world down to just the voices and none of the scenery.

Blackjack states that after it's all over she just wants to settle down and have a family, but even with a massive threat to all the land, would even be plausible after everyone she's ever met in the Hoof gives up their day to day state of being, and risk their actual lives for one pony?

Sorry for the stream of consciousness unedited rambling. I'll say again: Somber is not a bad writer and I don't think Somber is a bad writer and Somber is free to write anything he wants and I will enjoy it! :D


Afterthought after posting this: One of the things I failed to even consider is that - duh - the story is serialized, a sprawling serial tale is always going to be enormously difficult to end, especially when so much has been set up. Also, I shouldn't read PH on planes when I've only had 3 hours of sleep and my focus is handicapped.
I agree. Also, you would think there would be smaller warbands scattered here and there that would try and take advantage of the gathering of supplies in one location and try to raid them. Here's hoping we see something like that when the battle actually starts off and we see some peoples true colors come out. I mean, in all honesty, BJ still has alot of enemies even with the people she has gathered (Mind you not the heads most likely but definitely some of the grunts) and I would like to see some things fall apart once everything is underway. Or maybe I'm just a sociopath who hasn't had enough sleep..
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:29 am

Fallout: Equestria was the movie

Project Horizons is the Saturday Morning Cartoon

If Somber had toned down character development of other characters, that would encourage other authors to write their own stories on them and eventually have them tie into Horizons as a whole

Give them a vague overview that's open to interpretation and let others handle the burden of fleshing it out while Somber builds the main story around Blackjack
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Silver136 on Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:33 am

Vinylshadow wrote:Fallout: Equestria was the movie

Project Horizons is the Saturday Morning Cartoon

If Somber had toned down character development of other characters, that would encourage other authors to write their own stories on them and eventually have them tie into Horizons as a whole

Give them a vague overview that's open to interpretation and let others handle the burden of fleshing it out while Somber builds the main story around Blackjack.
Sure, that sounds like a good idea, but then you get a ton of continuity errors. The author writing about this guy says this happened because Somber hasn't gotten there yet, then Somber gets there and this happens instead kinda thing. Now if other authors got Somber's input on it, like Somber did with Kkat regarding Homage, them it'd be a really cool thing. But people are selfish or shy and I couldn't ever see that happening.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Icy Shake on Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:40 am

Caiomhe, I was expecting you'd say something along these lines, and I agree with a lot of it. I have a few caveats, though. On the point of it seeming to shrink the world in general, insofar as you have Project Horizons in mind as secondary to FoE (at this point I'm at most personally ambivalent on that front, more inclined to seeing PH as my primary interest), that's a battle already lost in the cave party, which drew together people from a larger section of the Wasteland, some of whom didn't have any preexisting connection to Littlepip. Also, Blackjack and her immediate group were already more integrated into the groups involved, and at least the story pushes things on the all gathering for you front back a level by having many of them already/very recently brought together by Cogjack—that still leaves them all assembling for "Blackjack," but Cogs at least has the right personality and motivations for that. It's still not the best supported, as I said, to an extent it's pushing things back a layer, but it's something.

As for flattening the characters, there  was certainly some of that, and I'd add that in at least a couple of cases there were people there whose presence was either coincidence (the crew of the Seahorse, in that it happened to be where their route had them at the time—there primarily for the plot, to deliver the news about Folly, but also fanservice with Thrush and Pisces) or for the party specifically, rather than the underlying operations (the Daft Punk ponies).

One place I think this went right, given the giant gathering happening, was in making Blackjack very explicitly the one who assembled them and the agenda setter, but not deeply involved in strategic or tactical planning, with the exception of the contingencies around Tom (which themselves required getting Folly first . . . ).

Exodus Hero wrote:
I agree. Also, you would think there would be smaller warbands scattered here and there that would try and take advantage of the gathering of supplies in one location and try to raid them. Here's hoping we see something like that when the battle actually starts off and we see some peoples true colors come out. I mean, in all honesty, BJ still has alot of enemies even with the people she has gathered (Mind you not the heads most likely but definitely some of the grunts) and I would like to see some things fall apart once everything is underway. Or maybe I'm just a sociopath who hasn't had enough sleep..
I could see some of that happening, and it would be interesting. But the timing would be crucial, as I'd really rather not see anything along the lines of the perspective and timing mishmash from the Battles of Fillydelphia/Neighvarro/over Manehattan.

Silver136 wrote:
Vinylshadow wrote:Fallout: Equestria was the movie

Project Horizons is the Saturday Morning Cartoon

If Somber had toned down character development of other characters, that would encourage other authors to write their own stories on them and eventually have them tie into Horizons as a whole

Give them a vague overview that's open to interpretation and let others handle the burden of fleshing it out while Somber builds the main story around Blackjack.
Sure, that sounds like a good idea, but then you get a ton of continuity errors. The author writing about this guy says this happened because Somber hasn't gotten there yet, then Somber gets there and this happens instead kinda thing. Now if other authors got Somber's input on it, like Somber did with Kkat regarding Homage, them it'd be a really cool thing. But people are selfish or shy and I couldn't ever see that happening.
Going beyond that, one of the major strengths of PH is its cast of well-developed and interesting minor characters. By going with this method, you'd be significantly weakening the story and the setting, and in the process making people less interested in even writing the things to fill them out in the first place.
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by Vinylshadow on Sat Sep 20, 2014 12:02 pm

Just pointing out that having a handful of people design and create a project as vast as Horizons might have been better if it was spread out over several intertwining stories written by several authors instead of a serial series as it is now
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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

Post by swicked on Sat Sep 20, 2014 12:26 pm

I think maybe the warbands idea might have worked if Blackjack was going to go around and see them. She's not, though. IIRC, Goldenblood's going to be organizing the offense while Blackjack goes to stop Horizons. She is not going to be fighting the brood, if she can help it. That's the rest of Hoofington's fight. It would be difficult to integrate everyone into the story that way, as a result.
...because, unlike Fallout Equestria, I don't believe Somber has any intention of switching perspectives for the final battle. The story follows Blackjack and we will never experience anything she does not.
The overarching moral/message Somber has been repeating across the entire story is that no one person can save the world/wasteland. No matter how hard Blackjack might try, she needs her friends if she is not not screw everything up. If she is to move forward at all. It's been about her inspiring others to take up the banner. If Somber had her do anything less than include everyone she could in the final showdown it just wouldn't work with the statement he's spent well in excess of a million words making.
...and I also think we all know a lot of these characters aren't going to survive this war. Somber could have potentially just referenced them as groups as opposed to individuals, but he might have felt it better we actually "see" them one last time.

On a somewhat parallel note, issues with this scene were actually what cause Somber to add five or six pages to the fic. I hate them, too. Not so much because it makes the world feel smaller, but it dilutes the characters. Characters Blackjack met and befriended over chapters are all of a sudden together and reduced from complicated and emotional beings into sharing a sentence with the two other characters Blackjack's met that are similar to them in some stereotypical way (ala "Brutus, Stronghoof, and Pain Train engaged in a flex off"). Sweetie Bott and Applebot. Psalm with Crumpets. Candlewick, Dazzle and Toaster. Charity and Velvet. Glory and Tenbra (which I know you said you felt iffy about, Cao, but I hope you still think it was better than it not being there). All of that was to help soften this reaction I had and figured others would have, too. Not that I expected Somber to expand the scene so much as a result. I gotta figure devoting pages to the characterization of these characters might have helped everything bigger over the few paragraphs they were originally just listed off in, though.

tl;dr: From the way I understand Project Horizons, this scene was inevitable. Hopefully it was still relatively fun to read, though.
...and I can't help feeling the whole "it's a small world" thing was part of the point, too, given they are all rallying together to save said small world they share despite hating each other :P

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Re: [GRIMDARK] Fallout Equestria: Project Horizons Discussion

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