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Its winter in Ponyville and for the most part everything seems to be going well. That changes when Grinding Gears, a friend of Cheerilee's from Detrot with more engineering skill than common sense, comes to town hoping to get endorsement for his latest invention.

The Automaton, a fully mechanical creation powered by magic.

He's researched extensively, planned out thoroughly and has brought his first working prototype for inspection.

What could possibly go wrong?

A Season Two Lunaverse Story

First Published
30th Jul 2013
Last Modified
30th Oct 2013

I love how Trixie assumes sight-unseen that the whole thing will turn into "Clank-clank-AAAAAAAAARRRRRGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!-There-were-some-things-ponies-were-not-meant-to-know!!!!"

It's like you've reversed polarity on the Trixie in Contraptionology.

>>2964515

I think Trixie would be a lot more open to the idea (especially if it meant getting her name added to something that could revolutionise magic/technology) if she wasn't so aware of the less than stellar track record that golems posses.

And if you were to ask The Doctor, reversing the polarity is the solution to everything :derpytongue2:

>>2964622

As it stands, all she sees getting her name attached to is "Idiot who let everypony in her town get killed by clockwork-golem-thingy.":rainbowlaugh:

:moustache:My Snails radar is beeping-SWEET CHRYSALIS, A SNAILS STORY!!! :pinkiegasp:  WITH THE G&PT!!!! IN THE LUNAVERSE!!!!!!:yay:

:rainbowdetermined2::pinkiehappy::raritystarry:

Wouldn't it make more sense to use a ''chem'', that is a piece of paper or parchment stored inside the golems head with their instructions on it? It would mean it doesn't have to walk around with writing on its head all day.

Good opening, lets see is Gears can make good with his demonstration.

Could maybe have used a run through an editor, but otherwise, this is looking like an interesting start!

Trixie stopped and stared at the teacher. "Then how did Scootaloo know what 'waterboarding' is?"

Bring your daughter to work day?

Oh, and I *did* get the Bedknobs and Broomsticks reference in there, I'm sure you'll be happy to hear.

I really love this idea. I'm very excited to see how these wild shenanigans unfold. If you want someone to look over these for punctuation errors, I would be glad to help.

This was a really funny start, eagerly looking forward to more!

>>2965630

Glad you liked it.

I hadn't originally intended to make a Bedknobs and Broomsticks reference (though I do love that movie :pinkiehappy:) but "Substitutiary Locomotion" has got to be the best pseudo scientific term for the act of bringing inanimate objects to life that I have ever heard so I couldn't resist using it :rainbowwild:

Bring your daughter to work day?

:rainbowlaugh: Oh the havoc Scootaloo could wrought if given the chance

>>2965013

Well idea behind the traditional golems were that they were most made of solid clay or rock so there wasn't space to stick a scroll inside it. Now I think most ponies do the writting on the forehead because that's how it's always been done and it also means that it gave the creator's an emergency kill switch, if they could get close enough to wipe off the writting.

Though I could imagine some ponies going more the chem route.

>>2965919

I really glad you're enjoying it so far.

If you were willing to look over my work before I posted it, I would be really grateful. I tried to be extra thorough this time round but as you can tell this :twilightblush:

If you're interested please PM me to let me know which way you'd prefer me to send my drafts to for checking. Thank you :twilightsmile:

>>2966131

I sent you a PM. Hope this isn't too redundant.

OK just finished the chapter, overall I felt everyone was very in character, and the dialogue was quite well executed and amusing or otherwise appropriate. The cheerilee Trixie discussion and Pinkie gag were very well executed and I liked the "history of golems. At first I was a bit worried about how they were being described but I can very much get behind this interpretation of them. I feel Grinding Gears manages to convey that sense of slightly off inventor who just doesn't grasp why certain things are bad ideas or social situations very well. Also I really liked the love potions discussion, that makes a good deal of sense and is good world building.

The tribalism scene was sort of amusing, though Trixie did come across a bit like that at the start which felt slightly off but not overly so)  Also the stealth hug thing was very amusing, I sort of have trouble seeing Trixie go for it, but boredom and a lack of interest can cause anyone to make a slightly mad decision and overall it was well comically times (PinkiePie's cupcake stealth attack) made me crack up.

But, I do feel the start was a bit sudden/jarring we just sort of fell right into it and while in media res can be good this still felt a bit to fast with a not quite enough context and I noticed some missing words of incorrect punctuation throughout the piece. Overall very solid first chapter, i'll be eagerly awaiting more. I have slightly mixed feeling about the bourbon, as I was worried that Trixie was made "stupid/foolish" in the first season and that, that was partially tied to it. But I also do like the idea of her being from a place where a single small drink everyday is very common, so as it stands I feel it's usage here was well done and the cliffhanger was well executed. Can't wait to see more!

I can't wait to see what terrible things the Automaton does to Ponyville.

Also, if you want more help proofreading I'd be willing to lend a hand.

>>2966098 Ah, I didn't think of it as a kill switch. Good idea, a chem would be harder to get at in an emergency.

>>2967009

Thank you so much for the thorough review :twilightsmile:

Looking back I do see your point about the opening. I'm getting help now with the proofreading but I may come back to the opening to see if I can make it not seem quite so jarring.

I can also see your concern about the bourbon thing and I do agree that gags like Drunk Lulamon is something that should be used sparingly.

Like I jokingly said in the chapter, when stuff goes wrong Trixie's first impulse does seem to be to go for the bourbon, much in the same way Twilight's first impulse is to go for a book. I think that as she grows she should be using that impulse less but I do think it's still going to be there and to me that's where the comedy lies, not with her being drunk or stupid but with her dealing with what had ultimately been her go to solution for the longest time.

Though that might just be the part of me that likes bourbon jokes talking :pinkiehappy:

Thanks again for the long review

>>2967439

I'm never one to say no when help is offered. :twilightsmile: Thank you.

>>2969828

I'm glad you liked my review and that it was of some use to you; in regards to drink Trixie I agree such a joke should be used very sparingly. Though there was one statement there that sort of confused me, you said Trixie had been going to alcohol for the longest time, but form my understanding alcohol is a rather new development for her having only started drinking upon her arrival in Ponyville. Sorry if I misunderstood; good luck with the next chapter and thanks for the response!

>>2971493

Well saying for the longest time was probably an exaggeration but going by the flashbacks in Hero of Oaten, Trixie had already discovered the joys of hard liquor well before Ponyville. Though I could be wrong.

>>2973571

I think Oaton was a singular exception; from my understanding Luna is very much against drinking (due to her twelve year bender) and made it a point to not allow her student drink. But I could be wrong but I think that's the case; though it's probably not that important. Besides, swirling a glass of liquor can look classy and dignified! :scootangel:

*sigh*

This was going be the time where I did a multi-chapter story that didn't involve a certain red stallion making an appearance. But then writing this I realised that to do that I would have to give up the chance to write him fighting a huge metal minotaur. Frankly, MY WILL ISN'T THAT STRONG!!! :raritydespair:

Oh well maybe next story :raritywink:

Awesome! Strongpony vs Mecha Minotaur has begun!

>>3012655

who says I'm not planning to use her?

:raritywink:

Objection withdrawn? EEEEEEYUP!!!!!!:eeyup:

Anyways, she does seem to be getting better at focusing on what others are saying. (Or at least better than M!Pinkie is.)

>>3012995

Raindrops and Big Mac tag-team a golem?

...

...Uh...just remember to keep it rated "teen"...:raritywink:

First there's oohing and ahhing, later there's running and screaming.

Ah yes, "laser-guided stupidity". When a stupid character not just does something basically stupid, but does something so disastrously stupid that they'd actually have to be very clever to maximise the disaster to such a degree. The sort of mind that not only decides that going into the wilderness and living with a group of wild bears is a good idea, but also drags along their spouse or best friend to enjoy the event, possibly neglecting to tell their plans so as not to "spoil the surprise". Or maybe just having the wild bears shipped covertly to their home in the suburbs.

I sympathise with Trixie, I really do.

>>3018094

When the dealing with characters like Grinding Gears, it goes beyond that into a special sub group which I like to call "Inventors Impulse Control Deficiency". It means that even though they can have a high intellect their minds unfortunately are stuck asking 'can?' instead of 'should?'. So they'll wonder 'can you attach a jet engine to a go-kart' instead of 'should you attach a jet engine to a go-kart'.

Having actually worked with Robotics... "Live" is about the worst word that you can animate an automaton with, especially if it can passively learn behaviors throughout it's construction. I guess "Kill" might be worse, but unless "Live" is an implied condition, it would probably just self destruct when someone was in the blast radius.

Now, if you were to animate a suit of armor on a exoskeleton with "Obediance," and have it killswitched to your instructions to the letter, we could talk.  Or just use a chem to specify exactly what you want to do, and no more. Bonus points if you can just use a punchcard for instructions and use the chem as an interpreter, that should be sufficiently mad science to be able to satiate Gears.

Not so much for Big Macs involvement, especially not him being strong enough to take on a golem like that himself, he's strong but still a farmer. Besides that this was a good chapter, the rams were random but highly entertaining and the dialogue was excellent. I feel it started a bit jarringly, and some of the descriptions were a bit more tell as opposed to show. But overall a good chapter.

>>3042490 Big Mac can tow a house. That's strong enough for me.

>>3084821

A golem is a magical, metallic creature though, that and he's not a main cast member, so his involvement and more his competence in fighting just feels off to me.

>>3084965 I get the feeling he won't be saving the day though.

>>3085249

Possibly, if he's introduced this early maybe not, but still, it's a concern for me. Sorry Zap Apple Smash and to you Fizzy if I was rude.

>>3042490>>3084821

Thanks for the comments

At the risk of spoiling the next chapter. I'm gonna hold off commenting on Big Mac until I get it posted. once that happens I promise I'll give a proper reply

>>3085488

I don't think you were being, you were just giving your honest opinion which I really appreciate. Thorough feedback is how I improve :pinkiehappy:

.

>>3087455

It's your story so your call, still any and all issues/concerns aside, I'm glad I didn't offend you.

>>3084965 He's also a highly ranked veteran bounty hunter.

>>3093116

I was under the impression that his bounty hunting was mostly just something to help keep burglars away as he seems to spend all his time on the farm; i'm not really for making BC into an action hero type character. That's just my view though, I could be misinformed.

So....by any chance did you play and or read the book for Genius: the Transgression before writing this story? Cause this seems a lot like a Stafnungh Artifacer experiencing Havok with a Wonder of Automata. It's like I was telling my Igor the other day, "Before you make super Automata, have a good handle on Episki so you can control it; otherwise it'll probably turn on you. Now hand me another monkey heart, I think I've figured out how to fix the circulatory system on my super predator. The problem isn't getting a strong enough heart, it's getting enough hearts! Soon, I will show them all the true genius of hyper biology!" And then I dissolved into mad cackling for a while.

And that's why you don't make golems!  Anyway, love the story, great humor and suspense and can't wait for more.

>>3093259

Sorry I can't say that I have though it sounds like my kinda thing :pinkiehappy:

>>3084821>>3042490

The thing about Big Mac is that as it stands, he is the closest thing that Ponyville has to a combat benchmark, especially in terms of raw physical power, that isn't a main character. Using him in this role meant that I was able to have a decent action scene, showcasing what the Automaton was capable of, without having to sacrifice one of the L6.

If I were to use another pony to fill Big Mac's role it probably would have been Raindrops but I have plans for her and frankly I think more people would have been annoyed if she was the one who ended up quoting the bard :derpytongue2:

Too bad that the character who actually LIKES to rhyme is Number Twoing the local supervillain.......

Good chapter overall, though the fight seemed a bit off, mostly because, given the golems size, it feels like BC should have had a harder time making some of those hits. I wasn't so much for the initial song, but once it was revealed t be the rams and they made underdog for Trixie, it was awesome. Seriously I love those guys. :pinkiehappy:

Loved the ending!

>>3127704

It is true that BC is incredibly strong, as we saw in the show, though how much of that could be tied to the potion and or be done by AJ/Dash is as of yet unknown. BC himself, to me at least, really shouldn't be a skilled fighter. Regardless BC seems out of commission for now so I shall stop my whining. :twilightblush:

Dun-dun-DUNNNNNN...

Well, this should play out interestingly...

Oooh, Round two

Fight!

We got to get Raindrops a theme tune now.

:trixieshiftleft: "Okay once Big Mac's recovered we'll team him up with Raindrops and..."

*CRASH BAM THOOM THUD*

:trixieshiftright: "...Okay once Big Mac and Raindrops have recovered we team them up..."

Allright Raindrops! :pinkiehappy:

This story is so silly, I love it.

Cue epic battle music.

Mac is ultimate horse.

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