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"[FoME] manages the impossible combination of being an actual legitimate nerd while staying unabashedly pleasant." —Aragón

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  • Sunday
    Icy Blaster

    It should come as now surprise that I enjoy a good crossover, but the latest chapter of Dueling Keyboards is breaking some new ground for me. It's not the first time I've contemplated working with the Caped Crusader, but it is the first I've been able to

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    2 comments · 104 views
  • Sunday
    Friendship is Card Games: Rainbow Dash Presents: Somewhere Only We Know

    It’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving in the States. And Black Friday, for that matter. So, let’s commemorate both with a tale of mistreated, overworked laborers and be grateful that most Equestrias aren’t like it.

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    3 comments · 152 views
  • Friday
    Master of the Feast

    My apologies for a belated happy Thanksgiving to those celebrating it.

    I've been busy for the past few days.

    12 comments · 135 views
  • 1 week
    Friendship is Card Games: Generations #1

    We’re not quite done with IDW yet. This week, we look at what may technically be part of G5. After all, what else do you get when you add G1 and G4?

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    5 comments · 217 views
  • 1 week
    Sovereign Pride: Imposing Sovereigns III Results

    Don’t worry, Flurry is volcano-safe. Mostly.

    Hello, one and all. Imposing Sovereigns III has produced numerous entries worthy of its lineage; selecting the top picks was by no means a simple matter. That’s why I got help. Below, the other judges introduce themselves before we move to the results.

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    18 comments · 725 views

Friendship is Card Games and Witchcraft: Cute From the Hip · 12:44pm February 21st

We continue our look at the twisted universe next door, this time checking on some of the younger Ponyvillians.

We open with a Wicker Man reference. Which is apparently the national anthem. Always a promising start.

And another unique wrinkle of this setting, robots hidden among the populace. Though the rampage hypothesis seems to be pure speculation on Cheerilee’s part, and she hardly seems like a neutral source on the topic given how many times she’s covered the subject in class. Of course, if foals are being taught to report these replicants for destruction on sight, there is the question of who built them and why.

Also, cyborgs are a thing in this setting. And have souls, no matter what the rules on augmentation abuse may claim.

Aaaand, there it is. The interesting thing is that, as we’ll see later, it’s unclear whether Cheerilee is mentally justifying a messy divorce or if her husband really was a robot.

Numbers being forbidden in Ponyville would help explain a lot of local oddities. Though I can’t recall if we ever actually see Mayor Mare in FiW, so the question of who forbade them may be up in the air.

The thing that most surprises me about Twist’s warning is that Ponyville has police. I can only assume Twilight’s used her influence as Celestia’s student to keep any charges from sticking.

“Your talent is wiggling. Mine is exposition. Both of our talents have to do with plot!”
Masterful. Though we never really did get a concrete explanation for Silver Spoon’s talent in canon. I doubt she got it in an explosion… though I can’t fully disprove it.

“That’s why we’re the main characters.”
Maybe of a different show, Diamond. Though I have to wonder if this is a common belief in the fourth-wall aware. Just because you know you’re fictional doesn’t necessarily mean you know your role in the narrative.

“Mark mitzvah” works as well as “cuteceañera.”

Honestly, every one of Diamond’s lines in this scene is amazing. “There’s going to be so many snacks there, it’s going to make the Grand Galloping Gala look like the Donner Party” is great on its own, but calling out that there are only nine students in the school is wonderfully meta.

“We’re like sharks right now.”
Echoes of the sirens taunting Sunset Shimmer. (Yes, it’s circling bullies in both cases, but the comparison’s a lot more apt with the Dazzlings.)

The mental image of Spoiled Rich getting drunk and belting out a rendition of “All-Star” at Diamond’s cuteceañera is wonderful and should be cherished. Not to humiliate Diamond, but because the entire town would never let Spoiled forget it.

Applejack’s already changed religions once to appease a friend, Apple Bloom. And now there are consequences for turning back. Viscous consequences.

The existence of a president in a quasitheocratic monarchy like Equestria raises a number of questions.

Green does not look kindly on those who would go beyond their destined niche. And thus Applejack considers it her mission to nip Apple Bloom’s democratic ambitions in the bud.

“The spinning cutie mark was already taken by our local Beyblade champion.”
That… may not have aged well? I honestly have no idea if Beyblade is still a thing. Also, interesting and disturbing concept in there being a finite number of marks for any given talent.

And there’s another meme for the list. Buy some apples, indeed.
Also, I do appreciate American Dr. Whooves. They only gave him the accent after this episode.

… Huh. I’d forgotten that Twist apparently lives at the flower shop. Her color palette is fairly close to Roseluck’s.

Yeah, yeah, she’s definitely not going to replace you with two blank flanks, Twist. Deeeefinitely.

Yikes. When Rainbow Dash said she was nearsighted, she wasn’t kidding. :twilightoops:

I do love how they took Dash’s canon line and just had it degenerate into Pokéspeak.

Rainbow Dash… is color-blind. That’s a special kind of irony. And her teaching Apple Bloom to never listen to anyone who’s trying to tell her that her dream is an incredibly bad idea honestly isn’t that far off from canon.

“I’ve been replaced by a box with a face!”
The interesting implication here is that Apple Bloom and Diamond Tiara were friends before the explosion. I have several questions regarding that.

Ah, more continuity. And one of the great classic fan songs.

Saying somepony else has “the voluminous hair of a temptress” is pretty bold coming from Miss Tail Extensions.
Also, I have to appreciate Apple Bloom slipping into her native Applenese in times of stress.

Dare I even ask about the details of Twilight’s Discord fanfic?

I mean, XANA’s symbol probably isn’t what you’d want for a cutie mark. (Also, wow. Haven’t thought about Code: Lyoko in years.) Also, closest Nyx ever came to being canon.

Spacetime is not a toy, folks. Causal ripples are one of the good outcomes. At least Pinkie provided Apple Bloom with a way to retain her memories of the before-times.
Also, Pinkie was altering the past before Starlight made it cool.

The idea that Diamond is so desperate for additional companionship that she’ll put a face on anything is equal parts believable and sad.

“Diamond Tiara would never fall in love with someone as clumsy as you.”
The subtext was definitely there for those who wanted to find it. Having it brought out into Silver Spoon’s text works almost too well.

Bold word(s(?)), Scootaloo.

And Sweetie Bot, another of the best known elements of Friendship is Witchcraft. I don’t know why it resonated so well with the fandom, but it does to this day.
Also, given the temporal ripple, I’m actually not sure if the other Crusaders existed this morning. Or they just don’t attend Cheerilee’s classes yet. The two are not mutually exclusive.

“I just follow the crowd!”
Say what you will about the background characters, at least they’re self-aware.

That fifteen seconds of Sweetie and Scootaloo blankly processing the term “consortium” is funnier than it should be, especially once they start blinking in time with the music.

I mean, I have to appreciate the straightforwardness of Cutie Mark Acquisition Program.

Twilight’s been sending Celestia friendship letters for decades. How much she’s actually learned is unclear, but it’s clear that Sunbutt isn’t exactly thrilled with the trend, to say nothing of the promise of more to come.

And so we get the FiW take on the Crusaders Evaders. Along with other events whose full effects have yet to be seen in full. A kitch-in time saves nine, no matter how many you were going for…

But for now, let’s see what I can make from this one. Note that while we have gotten news of some templating changes with the upcoming Strixhaven: School of Mages set, I’m not implementing those changes until we get further details on them. On to the cards:

Mark of Nyx 1W
Enchantment — Aura
Enchant creature
Enchanted creature gets +2/+2 and is an enchantment in addition to its other types.
There are few experiences so life-changing as walking among the gods.

Snooty Snark Evasion 1W
Target creature you control gets +2/+2 and gains hexproof from the color of your choice until end of turn. (It can’t be the target of spells or abilities of that color your opponents control.)
Strength in numbers and running away are both key pony tactics.

Ensouled Cyborg 2W
Artifact Creature — Cyborg Cleric
Metalcraft — As long as you control three or more artifacts, Ensouled Cyborg gets +1/+1 and has flying and lifelink.
“Flesh and steel both pale in comparison to true strength.”

Sweetie, Gentle Soul 2W
Legendary Artifact Creature — Unicorn
Defender, lifelink
When Sweetie, Gentle Soul becomes the target of a spell or ability that couldn’t target Sweetie if it weren’t an artifact, transform it.
Robots don’t go mad when they learn the truth, only when society rejects them.
Sweetie, Soulless Automaton
Legendary Artifact Creature — Juggernaut
Sweetie, Soulless Automaton attacks each combat if able.
“If the world isn’t going to love me, then I’ll teach it to fear me instead.”

Destined for Drudgery 3W
Destroy target nonland permanent. That permanent’s controller creates a 2/2 green Pony creature token.
“Our family was built on a tradition of backbreaking labor, and we’re not stopping now!”

Robot Hunter 3W
Creature — Pony Warrior
When Robot Hunter enters the battlefield, destroy up to one target tapped artifact creature.
“I can hear the servos in your limbs, abomination.”

High-Pressure Sales XW
Target player creates X Food tokens. Another target player creates X tapped Treasure tokens. (A Food token is an artifact with “2, T, Sacrifice this artifact: You gain 3 life.” A Treasure token is an artifact with “T, Sacrifice this artifact: Add one mana of any color.”)
“Buy some apples!”

Peppermint Duelist 1U
Creature — Pony Soldier
Prowess (Whenever you cast a noncreature spell, this creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)
Menthol Strike 1U
Instant — Adventure
Target creature gets -4/-0 until end of turn. (Then exile this card. You may cast the creature later from exile.)

Young Expositor 2U
Creature — Pony Advisor
When Young Expositor enters the battlefield, scry X, where X is the greatest number of creatures you control that have a creature type in common, then draw a card.
“Here’s what you need to know.”

“Pinkie’s Brew” 2UU
Enchantment — Song
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a verse counter on “Pinkie’s Brew”.
2UU, Sacrifice “Pinkie’s Brew”: End the turn unless the player whose turn it is pays X, where X is the number of verse counters on “Pinkie’s Brew”. (Exile all spells and abilities from the stack. The player whose turn it is discards down to their maximum hand size. Damage wears off, and "this turn" and "until end of turn" effects end.)

Icon of XANA 4UU
Enchantment — Aura
Enchant permanent
You control enchanted permanent.
Enchanted permanent is an artifact in addition to its other types.
With every new qubit, the horror’s power and versatility grew.

Snack Moocher 2B
Creature — Unicorn Rogue
Whenever an opponent sacrifices a Food, you gain 3 life.
“Why do we even have unicorns?”
Silver Glow, exchange student

Temporal Intervention 5B
Return target creature card from your graveyard to the battlefield.
If you stop them from dying in the first place, is it still necromancy?

Astigmatic Courser 1R
Creature — Pegasus Warrior
At the beginning of combat on your turn, flip a coin. If the coin comes up heads, Astigmatic Courser attacks this combat if able. If it comes up tails, tap Astigmatic Courser.
She’s always flying blind.

Dignified Suffering 1R
Each creature that was dealt damage this turn can’t be the target of spells or abilities its controller controls.
2R: Dignified Suffering deals 1 damage to each creature.
Cheerilee makes sure to teach her students self-sufficiency.

Drench in Blood 2R
Choose one or both —
• Target creature gets +3/+0 until end of turn.
• Drench in Blood deals 3 damage to target creature.
One mare’s trauma is another mare’s call to arms.

Explosive Enlightenment 2RR
Exile the top three cards of your library. Until the end of your next turn, you may play those cards.
Fateful hour — If you have 5 or less life, you may cast one of those cards without paying its mana cost.

Wicker Mare 3R
Artifact Creature — Pony Scarecrow
XR, T, Sacrifice Wicker Mare: Choose one —
• Destroy target artifact with converted mana cost X or less.
• Wicker Mare deals X damage to target creature.
“At least it’s not bees.”
—Norin the Wary

Hypnotic Apple G
Target creature you don’t control blocks this turn if able.
Overload 3G (You may cast this spell for its overload cost. If you do, change its text by replacing all instances of “target” with “each.”)

Memory Warden 1G
Creature — Pony Shaman
Spells and abilities your opponents control can’t cause you to discard or mill cards.
“You can get rid of all the evidence you like. The past is still there.”

Socialize 3GG
This spell can’t be countered.
Draw a card for each green creature you control.
Nothing can stop the schmooze.

Student’s Dueling Top 1
T: Student’s Dueling Top deals 1 damage to each player.
3, T: Put Student’s Dueling Top on top of its owner’s library. It deals 2 damage to any target.
“Foals these days…”
—Mistmane, Pillar of Beauty

Laugh at Death (wb)(wb)
Return target creature card with power 2 or less from your graveyard to the battlefield.
“Why settle for just smiling at it?”
—Pinkie Pie

Zebra Tutor (wb)U
Search your library for a noncreature, nonland card and reveal that card. Shuffle your library, then put the card on top of it.
”I can help with your task if you know how to ask.”
—Zecora, zebra shaman

Portal Brewer 1UR
Creature — Pony Spellshaper
UR, T, Discard a card: Target creature you control gets +1/+0 until end of turn and can’t be blocked this turn.
3UR, T, Discard a card: Creatures you control get +1/+0 until end of turn and can’t be blocked this turn.

Friendship Explosion 2(rw)
Friendship Explosion deals damage equal to the number of creatures you control to target creature or planeswalker.
The Elements of Harmony are not unique in weaponizing social bonds.

Comments ( 13 )

I'll provide some examples for what will and won’t trigger Sweetie, since Magic doesn’t usually deal with the subjunctive case:

Molten Frame: Will trigger her, as it specifies artifact creatures.
Clear a Path: Won’t trigger her. Even if Sweetie weren’t an artifact, she’d still have defender.
Refurbish: Won’t trigger her. The ability only applies on the battlefield; this won’t make Sweetie enter the battlefield transformed.
Abrade: May trigger her. This depends on the chosen mode; artifact destruction will trigger Sweetie, but damage won’t.
Broken Wings: Will probably trigger her. However, if Sweetie somehow has flying or is an enchantment, she’ll be able to rationalize it away without descending into an existential rampage.

Pinkie's Brew is a superb song. And yeah, Sweetie Bot transcends this series, being completely awesome on her own!


The mental image of Spoiled Rich getting drunk and belting out a rendition of “All-Star” at Diamond’s cuteceañera is wonderful and should be cherished.

And they had to keep it a mental image because the first verse prominently features a finger and a thumb. :trixieshiftright:

But for now, let’s see what I can make from this one.

Inside Baseball Alert: The Mark of Nyx is referencing Theros' realm of the gods instead of the Past Sins character, especially with its flavor text.

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: Prowess is a triggered ability that doesn't apply to spells cast before a creature with it hit the battlefield. Notably, this means that Peppermint Duelist won't be boosted by its own adventure half.

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: If you can find a way to untap Astigmatic Courser at instant speed, she can participate in a combat her triggered ability was trying to keep her away from.

Inside Baseball Alert: How else would a Beyblade be implemented as a Magic card, if not as a more violent version of Sensei's Divining Top?

Inside Baseball Alert: To answer Pinkie's question on Laugh at Death, repeatability. What's the point of recursion if you can only do it once, other than things this effect can't do anyway?

Inside Baseball Alert: Would I be considered racist if I said that that zebra was better off as a vampire? Because the difference between one mana and two is nearly as large as the difference between one color and two.

Inside Baseball Alert: As usual for Spellshapers, Portal Brewer is shaping the card you discarded as cost into an older spell.

Though I can’t recall if we ever actually see Mayor Mare in FiW, so the question of who forbade them may be up in the air.

She shows up in episode 6, I'm pretty sure, but I can't recall if she is still the mayor in this setting.

That… may not have aged well? I honestly have no idea if Beyblade is still a thing.

I think the physical game is still a thing, haven't checked on the show in a while though. Not that it matters much, as Beyblade Moses ensures it lives on in memes eternal.

Saying somepony else has “the voluminous hair of a temptress” is pretty bold coming from Miss Tail Extensions.

Remember when I brought up Hellfire last time? And how Fluttershy was also the one pushing blame on Pinkie in the first episode, and calling her a gypsy? The series doesn't go too far into it but this Fluttershy clearly has the hots conflicting feelings for this Pinkie.

especially once they start blinking in time with the music.

Especially when you realise that the music is All Star.

A kitch-en time saves nine, no matter how many you were going for…

I have my own personal theory about one particular part of that, but we'll get to it when we get to it (Episode 10).

"If the world isn’t going to love me, then I’ll teach it to fear me instead."

Hey, she hasn't said that yet. Speaking of which, I'll get to the Sweetiebot theory next episode, it's most relevant there even if she's first introduced here.

Man, I love these blogs... well, the first half of them, anyway. Once you start talking about MtG-type stuff I have no earthly clue what the Hell you're talking about. But the retrospective look at classic early fandom content is great fun!

So much fun. Your last one got me to watch FiW for the first time. This just might make it two. (As an aside, I will be forever jealous of missing the white-hot heyday of the fandom circa 2012-2013; it’s great to highlight some of these classics that helped fuel it.)

“Zebra Tutor” keeps the longstanding tradition alive. Though I can’t help but feel “Zebraic Tutor” might be more apropos.

Spoiled Rich getting drunk and singing All-Star needs to happen.

I think this episode is the one where FiW really hit its stride. More variety in voice actors, better quality recording, more editing and effects, the first real smash hit song, and the introduction of an iconic character. Whenever I think Friendship is Witchcraft, this is the sort of episode I think of.

The thing with the robots made me remember the old SNL "Robot insurance commercial" bit.

Lots of great humor here. Mistmane shaking her head at the misuse of ancient diviner's tools is perfect, and so is Norin the Wary being portrayed by Nicholas Cage. I would have also accepted him being cast as Orah, what with the whole seeking the ancient treasure of his ancestors angle.

It wasn't until the second viewing that I realized it was an off-screen Spike who kept getting drenched in blood.

That… may not have aged well? I honestly have no idea if Beyblade is still a thing.

I don't know about the toys, but Disney XD has been relatively aggressive in running promos for Beyblade Burst and just started airing the show's newest season.

I mean, XANA’s symbol probably isn’t what you’d want for a cutie mark. (Also, wow. Haven’t thought about Code: Lyoko in years.)

Greetings, fellow Lyoko Warrior :pinkiehappy:

“At least it’s not bees.”


Nothing can stop the schmooze.

I remember that scene. Seriously, one is not supposed to be rocking out to a song while hundreds of animals and ponies are running for their lives. And yet we all did it anyway :pinkiecrazy:

“Why settle for just smiling at it?”

Funny thing is, my old Alesha deck used to be in Pinkie Pie sleeves.

FiW really brings me back. I went to high school with scootaloo's FiW va, so i've always had a bit more of a connection to that abridged series over the others.

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