After one of the worst days of her life Carrot Top is asked by a dreadfully ill Rainbow Dash to help Fluttershy. Feeling sorry for the mare, the Element of Generosity agrees to help Fluttershy with getting the animals homes cleaned out. What could go wrong? Kidnapping, randsom, evil illusionists, and multiple musical numbers aside. Set in the Lunaverse, one of the more interesting alternate universes out there.
1 comments · 109 views
A Study on the Pony Tribes and their Magic
By Proffesor Gerrald Ironbeak
Ponies as a facinacting species for several reasons. The most obvious of these is their mass subspecies dimorphism, referred to colloquially as 'tribes' in reference to their preunification days. The massive physical differences are a result of the other intriguing trait if the ponies, their innate magic. While most sentient species have access to some form of magic, pony magic can express itself in a truly staggering variety of ways. Each tribe essentially has its own variety of magic, giving the pony species unparalleled variety in how they can utilize magic, even before including universals. Their magic is responsible for tribal differences by having also physically adapted the pony to better survive in their original, ancient environment. In addition, a pony's magic results in what is known as a 'cutie mark', a highly subjective and often abstract picture that appears on a pony's flank during adolescence. A cutie mark determines how a pony's magic is able to manifest itself.
A discussion of the various common pony tribes follows.
Earth - The most common variety of pony, the earth pony tends to be the default pony most species think of when they hear the term. Earth ponies are also the only variety of pony that is usually specifically referred to as a pony. Unlike the other known tribes, earth ponies are the only tribe without a unique word for themselves. (For fictional tribes that follow a similar rules, see Sea and Crystal below.) Earth ponies have singular rounded hooves, stocky bodies, short body hair, and long manes and tails. They are well adapted to survival in the large open plains of their ancestors. Most pony tribes are described by how they differentiate from earth. Earth pony magic is expressed largely through increased strength, speed, and endurance. They also have highly manipulative tails they can use to grip and manipulate objects, as well as the ability to hold things with their hooves via a passive magical field. It has been recently discovered that this passive field enables earth ponies to be able to ascend at angles that would stop most other creatures. Beyond these basic trait, earth tribals can express their magic one of two ways. They may show a deep connection to nature, enabling them to handle animals and plants with greater ease. The other option is referred to as 'refining', the use of their magic to enhance the quality objects that they create and/or create things at a greater rate. What such a pony can refine is dictated by their cutie mark. No other variety of earth pony magic has ever been confirmed to exist, but there are rumors of some having precognition, though this has never been proven. Odder tales, such as 'party-mancy' and magically binding contracts, have also occurred, but have been dismissed as local legends and tall tales.
Pegasus - The only flying variety of pony, pegasi are noted as being highly energetic and emotional. Pegasi are similar to earth ponies in appearance, but have a waterproof coat of feathers instead of body hair, in addition to an obvious set of wings. Pegasi also have hollow bones to make flight easier, and tend to have less muscle mass than earth ponies. Even so, their wings would be nowhere near large enough to support them without the aid of their magic. In addition to granting the pegasi flight, their magic includes both cloud walking and weather manipulation. As such, many pegasi can literally live their whole lives without ever touching the ground, though few modern ones do so. Pegasi are also the most militant of the pony varieties, making up a rather large percentage of the EUP Guard. Some rare pegasi have cutie marks related to something other than weather, flying, or battle, but these do not seem to ave any affect on how their magic manifests itself.
Unicorn - Considered by most to be the prime candidate for most bizarre looking pony tribe, the unicorn looks very little like its fellows. Possessing an extremely thin build, long legs, and longer, thinner body hair, unicorns sound like they should be the most elegant of ponies (and in the minds of many unicorns, they are). However their other features tend to ruin this effect for most species, as well as other pony tribes. First, they have a long horn made of continuously growing enamel; many unicorns file their horns to keep them slim and pointy, as well as to keep them from growing inconveniently long so that they jam against doorways (more than they currently do, as on average a unicorn is markedly taller than other ponies). They are also the only pony species with cloven hooves, an adaptation for walking in the rocky hills and valleys that the unicorns originally inhabited. Finally, they also have long leonine tails, similar to us, that they also use to assist with balance. The end result is a variety of pony that almost never loses balance. They interpret this as being graceful and poised. Unicorns are the weakest physically of the pony tribes, and are at the most serious risk health wise. Disease is a very common means of unicorn death. One could argue that, if not for their magic, unicorns would be extinct. Unicorn magic manifests as spell casting done of off naturally generated internal pools of mana. What spells a unicorn pony can cast is dictated by their cutie marks, though the rules are seemingly very loose and difficult to fully understand. Even two unicorns with identical, or at least very similar, marks might have vastly different spells. Even unicorns often have trouble figuring out what spells other unicorns can and cannot cast. Unicorn magic is therefore very easy to study and classify in general, but nearly impossible to do so on an individual level without coming to personally know the unicorn.
In addition to the common, modern tribes, I will also include notation and observation regarding the extinct tribes.
Thestral - Also referred to as 'bat ponies', thestrals are the extinct tribe known to have lasted the longest. Being unusual for ponies in that, unlike their multicolor cousins which literally cover the whole palate with their colors, thestrals had coats of very subdued colors that easily blended into the night, favoring blacks and grays. This was because they were nocturnal. Thestral's also possessed wings of fleshy membrane, similar to a bat or dragon, as well as large ears with which they performed echolocation. They also possessed slit eyes that worked most likely in a manner mimicking that of a cat, giving them exceptional night vision. Most experts agree that the fangs, as well as blood drinking, were fictional additions. Thestrals were originally a begrudgingly accepted member of Equestrian society; latecomers that due to their nocturnal habits never associated that much with their neighbors. Then, approximately one thousand years ago, a seemingly irrational fear of their nocturnal neighbors seemed to grip Equestria. It is believed that, due to their slow breeding, almost the entire thestral population was wiped out within two years, barring the occasional pocket that managed to escape. Thestral sightings were for a while treated as any other monster sighting and quickly dealt with. No thestral has been seen in over seven hundred years. Most modern ponies consider the seemingly random and pointless purge of the thestrals their greatest shame. Celestia refuses to comment. Not much is known about their magic beyond that their flying was magic based and that they could not cloud walk.
Bicorn - The other variety of extinct pony, the bicorn was quite similar to their earth pony brethren, except for two things. First, they possessed cat eyes, making some scholars theorize that they were nocturnal. While I do no share this theory, if it is true it means every variety of pony that went extinct was nocturnal. The other trait the bicorn possessed was a pair of goat like horns on top of their heads. Like the unicorn, bicorns could cast spells based on their cutie mark. Bicorns were, according to legend, twice as powerful as unicorns due to having two horns. This is suspect, but due to extinction can be neither confirmed or denied. Bicorns were highly aggressive for ponies, and often staged attacks and raids on the other tribes. They vanished very early in the Windego Winter, and have never been seen sense. It is believed that they perished during one of the first years of the Windigo Winter, their natural hostility having made them the prime target of the emotion eating spirits.
For the sake of completeness, included here are the fictional or mythological tribes of pony.
Fluffy - The highly popular fictional character of Fluffle Puff from the series of best selling children's books that bear her name (Fluffle Puff Tales) depict her as being part of this completely fictional tribe. Possessing great masses of fluffy fur, in which she can supposedly store anything and pull it out later when she needs it, Fluffle Puff is also depicted as not being able to talk, instead replying on pantomime and silly sounds to get her ideas across. Her fur grows back the instant it is cut. Fluffle Puff is so ubiquitous with Equestrian children that some non-ponies don't realize that fluffy ponies are not real. This says something about our education system.
Crystal - Once thought to be an extinct tribe, crystal ponies had supposedly glittering crystalline coats. Their magic was supposedly linked with emotions, and they were supposed to have lived in a massive crystal city in the far north. So widespread and common where stories of crystal ponies not only among the various tribes, but also in the literature of numerous other species, that it was long thought that they were a real tribe that had either gone extinct or turned isolationist. However, numerous expeditions to the far north have revealed not even the barest hint that a civilization ever even existed there. While there are a few crackpots who still think that they are real, any respectable scholar knows that crystal ponies are simply a piece of widespread fiction.
Sea - Supposedly having a fish tail and fins instead of legs, sea ponies are entertainingly inconsistent in their description. Some claim they had hair and manes. Others state they had scales, but also manes in a manner similar to pegasi. Still others claimed they had fins that acted like their manes. Their temperaments also range from helpful and kind, to cruel tricksters, evil enchantresses, or bloodthirsty monsters, seemingly as the story needs. About the only thing consistent with sea ponies is that they are excellent singers, though what effects their songs have very with the story.
18w, 4dAU Redesign!16 comments · 253 views
29w, 5d50 Headcanon Barage!0 comments · 95 views
Okay this has been going around, so let's get it on! Time to fire my headcanon! And please note this is for the show itself, not any AUs I might be participating in.
1. How old are Celestia and Luna?
About 1500 years I'd say. Otherwise the ancient unicorns wouldn't have to move the sun themselves.
2. How old is Cadance?
Early thirties, she is an ascended pegasus after all.
3. Were Celestia and Luna always alicorns, or did they ascend?
Always. Celestia basically said so at the end of Season 3.
4. Are Cadance and Twilight immortal?
Depends on what you mean by "imortal". Ageless yes, unkillable no.
5. Have there been other alicorns in the past?
6. How much authority do Celestia and Luna have in Equestria?
Absolute Diarchs,but they don't abuse the power.
7. Does Shining Armor rule The Crystal Empire along side of Cadance?
Yes, he is her husband after all, and it would be sexist/stupid not to do so.
8. Other than Twilight, Luna, and Cadance, what relationships have been important to Celestia in her lifetime (students, close friends, lovers, family)?
Sunset Shimmer, any former students before her (Starswirl?), and many friends. I don't see her having lovers though.
Ponies and Equestrian Culture:
9. Are there still cultural differences between earth ponies, pegasi, and unicorns, or is the culture homogeneous by the time shown in canon? Are there cultural stereotypes (positive or negative)?
Yes there are differences, mostly from physiology (proper preening, spell etiquette, etc.). And of course there are positive and negative stereotypes, there are identifiable groups. Any time that happens stereotypes develop. It's natural mental shorthand.
10. Are there foods or items native to Cloudsdale that are uncommon on the ground? Are there foods or items on the ground that are uncommon in Cloudsdale?
Lots of stuff from the ground is uncommon on Cloudsdale simply because it would fall through the clouds without enchantments, and I imagine longer lasting enchantments are more difficult/expensive/both and as such are saved for more essential goods. Cloudsdale, besides weather making and cloud architecture, really doesn't have anything the ground doesn't have. That's why getting food from the ground is such a big deal for pegasi.
11. Can all unicorns learn all spells, given the time and effort spent practicing them, or is magical talent usually limited in some way?
Magical talent is limited somewhat by cutie mark. The natural selection of spells that come with a mark is usually enough for a pony, and any research they do is probably going to be towards their special talent. Spells related to a special talent are easier to cast, and ones that are different enough, or even opposed to it, are more difficult or outright impossible to perform. Magic talents like Teilight and Trixie have the potential to learn any spell, but they have to knuckle down and study hard to do so with any real success as they have no natural gift with any particular spell. All of their spells are the result of hard work and practice, but they can learn and use any spell is the trade off.
12. Earth pony magic: Does it exist? What is it?
Yes. Their magic is improving the quality of things. Plants grow quicker and hardier, food tastes better, buildings are more sturdy, etc. Let an earth pony work with materials and their natural talent, and you get quality results.
13. Some pony families we’ve seen seem to have naming conventions (the Apples, Twilight’s family) and others don’t appear to (Rarity’s family, Pinkie’s family), which is more common? Are there reasons for one or the other?
Time marches on. Pinkie Pie's family has naming conventions, Pinkie is just an outlier (probably due to her odd appearance). As such and from other things seen in the show itself, I believe every earth pony has a last name at the least, even if we haven't heard it yet. The Pies, Apples, and Cakes strongly support this. Pegasi and unicorns seem to lack family names. As for theming first names, it's probably a matter of family tradition with less conservative families letting it fall out of practice.
14. How much formal schooling is an average, middle class pony expected to complete?
12 years, high schools were confirmed in the comics and treated as normal and basic. EVEN THOUGH THAT SHOULDN'T BE THE CASE! Considering their societal structure, it should be 6-8 years of schooling, with focused schooling/apprenticeships afterwards. High school is required either as a gateway for college or basic functioning in a highly advanced technological society with a massive population requiring large periods of time to get "basic" information down to properly function as a member of society. It really shouldn't need to exist in Equestria.
15. What’s the average lifespan for a pony? At what age is a pony expected to be independent of their parents?
60-80 years, except for earth ponies who I'd put at about 150. Seriously, name one old pony that wasn't an earth pony, these guys have got to able to pack on the years. And they're probably expected to be independant in their late teens/early twenties.
16. Are there roughly an equal number of male and female ponies?
Yes. We just don't see them because the girls don't hang out in the same places as guys would.
17. How informed are most ponies about things that happen in other parts of Equestria? What about other parts of the world?
We know they have newspapers, but no radio, so any official news they get will be a bit old and may even travel slower than word of mouth, but it'll get around. As for foreign affairs most ponies, like most humans, would just not care.
The Main Characters:
18. How old are the Mane Six? Spike? The CMC?
Early twenties, about five, and around ten.
19. Did Fluttershy remain on the ground after getting her cutie mark? Were she and Rainbow Dash friends all along, or did they drift apart for a while?
Probably not, what with being a kid and all. But I imagine she moved as son as she could. RD probably moved to Ponyville specifically to look after her and stay in touch.
20. Rarity and Applejack both seem to have grown up in Ponyville. What were their interactions like before the show?
"Howdy, y'all want some apples?"
"Not today thank you."
"Alrighty, have a nice day."
21. What do Twilight and Spike consider their relationship to be?
Complicated. There is signs that they see it as a mix of siblings and parent/child, with more evidence starting to pile on the later as time goes on.
22. When did Pinkie move in with the Cakes? Is she a worker who rents a room, an apprentice, or is there some other relationship?
I personally go with beng a live in worker who rents there for convenience. She moved to Ponyville to find a job, and since she was new in town she also needed a home, hence renting with the Cakes.
23. Who among the Mane Six had the best parents growing up? The worst parents?
Best parents go to Twilight, because we actually get to see them supporting her and enabling her dreams and goals. Worst goes to Fluttershy: there has to be a reason she has such serious issues.
24. Why didn’t the CMC hang out more/know each other before Call of the Cutie?
Because kids are actually very bad at actively seeking out new social groups they aren't already a part of.
25. Is Scootaloo an orphan? Will she ever be able to fly?
No, we've seen her house. And no, she will never fly, but she won't need to be able to fly to be awesome.
26. Will Apple Bloom’s cutie mark involve an apple in some way, even if it’s unrelated to farming or baking?
Nope, it won't. And I imagine that will be the focus of an episode/lesson.
27. How is Sweetie Belle’s relationship with their parents different than Rarity’s was?
Rarity has ambitions to be a member of the upper class, while her parents are fine where they are. This causes friction between them, mostly on Rarity's part. Sweetie has no such ambitions and is content, letting her get along with her parents better...if they weren't gone on trips all the time.
Side and Background Characters:
28. Is Mr. Cake the father of the Cake twins or not?
Yes. Pony genetics is just weird like that.
29. Are Big Mac and Cheerilee an item, romantically?
Maybe, but it also might be lingering effects from the love poison. And even if it's not, the possibility may be keeping them from choosing to pursue it.
30. How did Prince Blueblood get his title?
I like to think Prince us actually just his name.
31. Is Silver Spoon equally as bad as Diamond Tiara?
No, she seems to be just a tagalong who follows Tiara's lead because she's rich.
32. Is Zecora’s magic common among zebras?
Unless we actually see more zebras to prove otherwise, I'm going with no. Magic users like Zecora are not common, but they aren't unheard of either.
33. Why does Daring Do publish her stories as fiction?
I have no idea, it's stupid. Maybe she didn't want fans hounding her on adventures? But then why publish at all? It makes no sense!!!! (Please wait, author is ranting about the first episode of the series he truly ever hated. Yes, he even prefers Mare Do Well and Spike at Your Service.)
34. Do you have a strong headcanon for any non-speaking or one line background ponies that you want to share?
Oddly enough, no. Not even Lyra/Bon. They honestly don't leave that much of an impression in the show, and I'm not counting fanon for these questions. As such, there is nothing to build the headcanon with.
35. Does Equestria differentiate between speaking and non-speaking species, in terms of respect, rights and legal responsibilities? Is there some other line or scale used? (For example, how are cows classified? Diamond Dogs? A chimera?)
I think sapient/non-sapient is a better line than talking/not-talking. cr. parrots and goats. Sapient beings would be allowed to become citizens with all the rights, privileges, and responsibility that implies. More monstrous sapients like chimera chose not to join society and become bound by its laws. Others such as diamond dogs have their own culture and aren't interested in joining the ponies. Dragons don't give a buck since they're freaking dragons, they do what they want.
36. Do other speaking species form their own nations, or are all nations largely integrated, with some having larger populations of a species than others?
I imagine there are plenty of species focused nations, they just happen to have mingling species...unless they're just that intolerant it kind of has to happen in a world with so many sentient species.
37. Are minotaurs related to cows at all?
About as close as humans and chimpanzees. Remarkably farther than would appear at first glance. (Humans are closer related to lemurs and pygmy tree shrews than chimpanzees, even though we have extremely similar DNA. We really branched off from each other early on in our evolutionary lines.)
38. Do all zebras rhyme?
No, because that would be stupid. Zecora does it as a mental exercise and to keep a mystical air about her, she seems to like that.
39. Do zebra cutie marks work the same way as pony cutie marks?
Yeah sure, why not? I've seen nothing to indicate otherwise.
40. Do any species have types of magic, other than ponies and zebras?
Possibly. Sadle Arabians are high on my list of likely candidates, as are dragons, but otherwise I've seen nothing to suggest it.
41. Is the lack of buffalo presence in Equestria cultural, or simply because most pony towns aren’t built to accommodate a full grown buffalo?
I think it has to do with ponies just reaching buffalo territory, and the largely traditionalist migratory tribal nature of the buffalo indicating they wouldn't be very inclined to leave their tribe to live amount a different species with a culture they really don't understand.
Headcanon and You:
42. Do you consider official sources other than the show (comics, card game text, movies, novels, etc.) to be canon?
Yes, until proven otherwise by the show.
43. Do you have one headcanon that you always use, or do you switch depending on projects?
I switch it up for AUs, simply because the information presented there is different.
44. Can you easily accept the headcanons of different writers? Do you prefer when stories match your headcanon?
I prefer when it matches for ease, but as long as it isn't too out there I can easily accept it for a story or the like.
45. Is there a part of your headcanon that you wish was more popular among writers?
Celestia and Luna being waaaay younger than 10,000+ years old. Writers have no sense of scale. Our own species is only about 12,000 years old, that would make them older than our species in most cases. Ponies are only about 5,000 years old, so that's twice the age of the species they are supposed to be the pinnacle of. Numbers matter people.
46. Is there a popular piece of headcanon that other writers use that you dislike?
God power Celestia. Yes she's well above the average unicorn, but she's not all powerful. Twilight probably comparison favorably to her now. Alicorn =/= invincible super being.
47. Have you ever written a story or blogpost just to explain some part of your headcanon (other than this one)?
48. Does your headcanon influence things like your favorite pony, ship, or episode?
Amazingly no, it doesn't seem to come up.
49. Would it bother you if the show proved part of your headcanon wrong? Any specific piece that would really bother you to lose?
Not really, unless it was the sisters ages being stupidly huge because, again, sense of scale. Or God Celestia, or all zebras rhyming, because those last two are just stupid
50. Is there something that wasn't asked about here, but you feel like you need to explain to everyone?
The Equestrian economy sucks. That's why the value of the bit fluctuates wildly; it's totally unstable and driven by market forces in a barter and haggle influenced economy. Which is fine on the small scale, but Equestria is at the developmental stage where this really doesn't work anymore and they need to change their economic model to a more stable basis.
38w, 1dFuture story ideas!8 comments · 104 views
With the latest chapter of my Lunaverse story basically done, I've found that my imagination is fully on fire with several other ideas for fics. I'm planning on maybe starting one or two up; I seem to write better when I have multiple stories being written at once, as whenever I try to focus on one I get ideas for another. ADD writing powers activate!
But in all seriousness, I probably am going to at least start these stories (which I have plenty of ideas for) once my most recent Linaverse chapter is done. I feel a writing splurge coming on! And I got time to do it too!
1. My own different bearers AU, the Sunsetverse! Because apparently somebunny beat me to the name Shimmerverse.
2. Kamen Rider Unicorn! Friendship will end your Lonely days!
3. Transformers Animated fusion fic. Sari isn't the only techno-organic in the galaxy.
4. Dan Hibiki, Hero of Equestria! (As you can tell, this is a super serious story.)
Though seriously, not starting any of these untill the chapters done and submitted to my prereader.
42w, 23hUpdates Ahoy!2 comments · 70 views
Guess who finally isn't feeling ill, busy with work, school, life, or having their tablet crash all the time from overly-long holiday animatics that kept me from colorful horse words over the holiday? This bunny right here! Updates for my stories coming soon guys! First up will be my long overdue update for the Lunaverse.
Also, looking for potential pre-readers, as it's hard to get some that are relyable. Thanks for your patience guys!