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FoMEy the Windigo wishes you a merry and friendship-filled holiday. Or else.

More Blog Posts1125

  • Thursday
    MMascot of Frost

    It's the most wonderful time of the year (or near enough) and that means it's time for holiday avatars. The traditional embellishment is a Santa hat, but I like to go the extra mile. And while I've done plenty of Christmas avatars, I've never done a specifically Hearth's Warming-oriented one. Ergo, FoMEy the Windigo.

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    10 comments · 165 views
  • Sunday
    Icy Blaster

    It should come as no 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 put

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  • 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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  • 1 week
    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 · 139 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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Friendship is Card Games and Witchcraft: Cherry Bomb and Star Waving Mad · 12:14pm March 28th

This week marks the beginning of a four-stage content rotation that should see me through June. Fair warning, one step will be the new season of Pony Life. There are definitely interesting components there. For now, time to summarize some abridged pony.

Also, note that with Strixhaven previews officially begun, I’ll be using both the set’s mechanics and its templating changes. In theory. Probably going to take me a few times to stop writing out “converted mana cost.”

Cherry Bomb

Of course they worked Spike abuse into the rodeo training. Life is very much suffering for this Spike.

Life is more subtle suffering for Apple Bloom. There’s as much carrot as stick when it comes to getting those non-farming aspirations out of her young mind.

Recasting AJ’s rodeo blue ribbons as war medals is honestly ingenious, especially given the sun iconography on some of them. Though the one with the big fat “1” on it raises some questions… unless Applejack was leading the 1st Ponyville Infantry. “Jackie’s Juggernauts,” they called themselves.

Ah. And that’s why nopony’s had to censor their name this episode. Not only did Sherclop resolve the copyright issue, they got a sponsorship from Dole.

:rainbowhuh: “Now careful, Raincloud.”
For a few points in Derpygate, it felt like this was where we were headed. Thank goodness that didn’t happen.

The collective cry of realization after the chanting is fantastic. Ponies just assume the one in charge is named “Applejack.” Understandable, especially if there are some veterans in the crowd.

iPod Nano. Now there’s a name I’ve not heard in a long time.

The only surprising thing about the tentacle monster is that there’s a laser tag arena in Town Hall. This is Ponyville.

“It’ll go away if we ignore it!”
“The music helps me forget.”
Bless your hearts, Ponyvillians. And that includes Applejack, given how this is all because of a pop-up ad.

I know I’ve been using the resurrected Granny Smith as an excuse to make Zombie cards—I don’t get many opportunities with this source material—but I have to wonder what will happen if she’s not sent back beyond the veil “before it’s too late.”

Pinkie’s prediction isn’t wrong, but interpreting the prophecy is as important as receiving it in the first place.


Darn it, I’ve already done a Nigerian prince joke.

Ah, Twilight did start that podcast. Though it seems distribution is a bit of an issue.

Oof. Poor Raincloud.

… Wow. Is there water in the Ponyville lead supply, or are all ponies this dense?

Twilight’s naming skills continue to demonstrate themselves with the F.A.T. Squad (Find Applejack Together.)

I’m not sure what I love more, Twilight’s casual mention of implanting all her friends with tracking devices, her self-serving fantasies, the Dash-Applejack voice actress joke, or FiW doing Infinity Train before it was cool.

So… how often have Dash’s friends died on her, exactly?

I suppose if numbers are forbidden in Ponyville, I shouldn’t expect widespread literacy either. Though that does make Applejack’s CO days seem more than a bit bizarre.

It is interesting to see Cherry Jubilee reinterpreted as a Fallout slaver rather than the more typical brothel owner.

Knowing this show, I wouldn’t be surprised if Dash’s “Excuse me, Princess” was meant as foreshadowing. Either way, it’s especially funny when you consider pony Link.

:twilightoops: “I don’t know what happened! I didn’t pay attention to any of that stuff.”
Oy. It’s like dealing with a D&D player.

Silly Applejack. All of this Pinkie’s songs are sad ones with deceptively happy tunes.

“A toymaker’s creation trapped inside a crystal ball” is still a brilliant way to describe a character in a TV show made to promote a toy line.

I do appreciate how Pinkie’s subtitles go translucent while she’s muffled. That they go directly under her for a bit at the end is the cherry on top.
Er, no pun intended, given the location.

It’s a Pippington Promise because you swear on the eye he’s already lost.

Never mind the glitch in the Matrix. I’m sure it’s nothing.

Engine noises on the Wonderbolts always amused me. Having them on a stagecoach is even better.

The fact that, of all things, “Rarity catch me” stays consistent is amazing.

Wow. They are just aggressively not paying attention to a word coming out of Applejack’s mouth. (Though if the bomb comes out that easily, there’s an argument for slipping it into Whiplash’s office, then skipping town.)

And Raincloud continues the trend of the shunned and ignored being the wisest, noblest figures in this world.

Meanwhile, Applejack’s takeaway from her nightmare of lucidity is that it’s best to live in your own bubble of ignorant oblivion, unaware of the horrors that lurk in the conscious world. And let’s face it, there’s an argument in favor of that position, especially in this Equestria. :derpytongue2:

Star Waving Mad

And a short to cap things off, since it directly follows and harkens back to this episode.

Also the previous episode, since Twilight being the Princess of the Night never stopped being a thing. Though I have to wonder whether Bi-Weekly Moon Princess Festivals are twice a week or every other week.

So… Twilight hasn’t been raising the moon for at least a month, if not two. Anypony want to get on that? Make her do her job? Spike doesn’t exactly have enough authority to enforce this.

Given this Twilight, I’m legitimately unsure whether or not she really thinks she came up with Spike's suggestion on her own.

Scootaloo calling Dash “Mommy” carries a number of concerning implications. And it’s kind of a shame how she’s the odd Crusader out when it comes to FiW meme potential. She just doesn’t get a chance to do much.

Seriously, one day Spike will burn and devour everypony here, and nothing of value will be lost. Except Sweetie Belle and maybe Pinkie Pie.

Yeah, with that level of… let’s call it “personalization,” there’s no way Twilight can escape responsibility for what’s about to happen. As Spike said, everypony can see the moon. Especially when it’s covered in flaming wreckage.

… Huh. So this short came out September 2012. Hasbro filed the trademark for Equestria Girls three months later, and the movie wasn’t announced until May 2013. Friendship is Witchcraft seems to have predicted Spike the dog.

And the town hall tentacles did not, in fact, go away when ponies ignored them. And now the (thankfully very small) moon has crashed in Ponyville. Worst of all, nopony told the emergency broadcaster that Raincloud sacrificed herself in the desert.

So yeah, Twilight is horrible on just about every conceivable level, just in case that wasn’t clear. Let’s see what I can do with that particular kind of horror:

Warden of Ignorance 1W
Creature — Pony Advisor
Each player can’t draw more than one card each turn.
Cards from outside the game can’t be put in players’ hands or libraries.
“Only the wicked would put an end to bliss.”

Emergency Dispatcher 2W
Creature — Pony Soldier
At the beginning of each end step, you may put a creature card with mana value X or less from your hand onto the battlefield, where X is the damage dealt to you by sources you didn’t control this turn.

Fortunate Flier 3W
Creature — Pegasus Survivor
Morbid — Fortunate Flier has indestructible as long as a creature died this turn.
Either she’s lucky, or she has a talent for befriending the doomed.

Decorated Officer 5W
Creature — Pony Soldier
When Decorated Officer enters the battlefield, search your library for an Aura or Equipment card. You may put that card onto the battlefield attached to Decorated Officer. If you don’t, reveal the card and put it into your hand. Then shuffle.

Cathartic Distraction U
Until end of turn, target creature gains “If this creature would deal damage to a player, that player mills that many cards instead.” (To mill a card, a player puts the top card of their library into their graveyard.)
Overload 3U (You may cast this spell for its overload coast. If you do, change its text by replacing all instances of “target” with “each.”)

Time Slip 2UU
Return all nonland permanents that entered the battlefield this turn to their owners’ hands.
Meddling with time leads to consequences the meddler can never fully appreciate.

Twilit Moon’s Zenith XU
Target player mills twice X cards. Shuffle Twilit Moon’s Zenith into its owner’s library.
“Equestria cannot afford my madness. But these days, it is very tempting.”
—Princess Celestia

Subdermal Tracker B
Artifact — Equipment
Whenever equipped creature dies, you may put it on top of its owner's library.
Equip B
There is no escape from Twilight Sparkle’s friendship.

Harsh Tutelage 1B
Draw a card. You lose 2 life.
Learn. (You may reveal a Lesson card you own from outside the game and put it into your hand, or discard a card to draw a card.)
Every lesson comes at a cost.

Eager Subordinate R
Creature — Pegasus
As Eager Subordinate enters the battlefield, choose a creature type.
Eager Subordinate is the chosen type in addition to its other types.
Eager Subordinate’s power is equal to the number of creatures you control of the chosen type.

Burden of Knowledge 3RR
At the beginning of each player’s upkeep, Burden of Knowledge deals damage to that player equal to the number of cards in their hand.
After the first sting of awareness, ponies long to forget the reality of their miserable lives.

Burning Moon’s Nadir XRR
Destroy X target artifacts. Shuffle Burning Moon’s Nadir into its owner’s library.
There is no deep symbolism or inauspicious omen. Only a massive hunk of rock slamming into the planet’s surface.

Ponyville Sucromancer 1G
Creature — Pony Shaman
When Ponyville Sucromancer enters the battlefield, create a Food token. (It’s an artifact with “2, T, Sacrifice this artifact: You gain 3 life.”)
Whenever an artifact is put into a graveyard from the battlefield, scry 1.

Towering Terror 2G
Creature — Tentacle Horror
Whenever a nonbasic land enters the battlefield under an opponent’s control, put a +1/+1 counter on Towering Terror.
“I’m sure it will get bored soon.”
—Marion Mare, mayor of Ponyville

Basic Calisthenics 2
Sorcery — Lesson
Put a +1/+1 counter on each of up to two target creatures.
“Gym class is a multiversal constant. And a blight on the face of education.”
—Twilight Sparkle, thaumologist

Toyetic Engine 4
Artifact — Vehicle
Whenever Toyetic Engine deals combat damage to a player, create that many Treasure tokens. (They’re artifacts with “T, Sacrifice this artifact: Add one mana of any color.”)
Crew 2 (Tap any number of creatures you control with total power 2 or more: This Vehicle becomes an artifact creature until end of turn.)

Endless Express 5
Artifact — Vehicle
Endless Express’s power and toughness are each equal to the number of creatures you control plus the number of artifacts you control.
Crew 3

Abandon the Unworthy B(gw)
As an additional cost to cast this spell, sacrifice a creature.
Put a +1/+1 counter on each creature you control.
Climbing the social ladder means leaving the lower rungs behind.

Search and Rescue 1(wu)
Return up to two target permanents you own to your hand.
Applejack’s friends set out, knowing that she’d never willingly leave the dead-end, podunk town she loved so much.

Whiplash, Plantation Tyrant BRG
Legendary Creature — Pony Warrior
Other creatures have “T: Add one mana of any color.”
At the beginning of each end step, Whiplash deals 2 damage to each other untapped creature.
“Somepony didn’t meet her quota this week.”

Go Quietly 1WB
Destroy target creature. That creature dying this way doesn’t cause abilities to trigger.
The greatest tragedy wasn’t Raincloud sacrificing herself for those who’d scorned her. It was that those ponies didn’t even notice.

Raincloud, Electric Outcast 2RW
Legendary Creature — Elemental
Flying, lifelink
Whenever Raincloud, Electric Outcast enters the battlefield or attacks, it deals 1 damage to each other creature.
Sacrifice Raincloud: Creatures you control gain indestructible until end of turn.
Judge a cloud by her enemies.

“The Gypsy Bard” 2UB
Enchantment — Song
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a verse counter on “The Gypsy Bard”.
2UB, Sacrifice “The Gypsy Bard”: Each player mills X cards, where X is the number of verse counters on “The Gypsy Bard”. Then you put a creature card from a graveyard onto the battlefield under your control.

Compelled Obedience 3UR
Enchantment — Aura
Enchant creature
You control enchanted creature.
UR, Sacrifice Compelled Obedience: It deals 5 damage to enchanted creature.
Some use subtle spells to influence minds. Others use high explosives.

Twilight the Unready 2WWBB
Legendary Creature — Unicorn Noble Warlock
Ward (wp)(bp) (Whenever this creature becomes the copy of a spell or ability an opponent controls, counter it unless that player pays (wp)(bp). (wp) can be paid with W or 2 life.)
Magecraft — Whenever you cast or copy an instant or sorcery spell, destroy up to one target nonland permanent.

Con Junction Crossroads
Land — Swamp Mountain Forest
(T: Add B, R, or G)
Con Junction Crossroads enters the battlefield tapped.
Cycling 3 (3, Discard this card: Draw a card.)
Hooking up dupes and patsies and suckers.

Comments ( 17 )

I for one am looking forward to seeing you tackle Pony Life again. As one of the five or so people who actually enjoy that show. A shame we're reportedly getting only a half season this time around, but it does at least seem like they're back to 10 minute episodes. For now though, let's talk about one of FiW's most iconic episodes.

I do believe the tentacle monster is the same one Fluttershy summoned last episode, and lost control over when Luna came to visit her.

It probably slipped between the Nigerian Prince joke and the BUYOURTOYS moment, but Mayor Mare is still making puns all the time. "Don't forget your training!"

I have not seen much of Cherry as a brothel owner in fanmedia. I should research this.

Not only is that one line in the song brilliant, the whole thing is rather insightful as far as Pinkie's character in this series goes. It's also worth noting how the song is probably a mix of something her parents did actually sing to her and her own spin on it. Also also, it becomes more apparent when you check out the original music compilation but the vast majority of the background music tunes in the episode are riffs and reprises of this one song. Also also also, at one point they considered making it an electronic piece, the sketch for that can still be found in said video.

I knew there was something important in the short. Now that I remember what it is I'm glad I made sure you'd watch it and talk about it.

Abandon the Unworthy

Hey, I've seen this one. Not that I doubt there being earlier examples of the same thing, but this one specifically lines up so well (almost identical save for the cost (and the instant nature of it, but that's down to fundamental differences between the games, though I suppose it justifies the higher cost)) that the other just popped into my head as soon as I read it. I'm pretty sure it's because GR was one of the relatively not many Rastakhan cards to actually see play, even if iirc Zoolock wasn't exactly doing too well at that point in the meta.

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: X can be zero unless otherwise stated, so you can never fail to dispatch the ornithopter (unless you don't have one in your hand, obviously). Supplementary Inside Baseball Alert: the original ornithopter was attributed to Urza, so that flavor text was basically just a handwave to reprint it onto a plane he never visited.

Inside Baseball Alert: It's honestly not clear whether Mirrodin should be considered to have moons or suns, because they're made of metal just like everything else there up to and including substantial portions of the average denizen. (They aren't even cyborgs until Phyrexia happens, metal just grows on people because reasons.)

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: Under normal conditions, a crewed Endless Express will be a 3/3 at the minimum: it's an artifact and a creature, and you needed another creature to do the actual crewing.

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: Raincloud damages your creatures too, even itself. Having lifelink means that this isn't entirely a drawback, but you should still be careful. Oh, and damage on creatures lasts until the end of the turn, so it'll go down to a stiff breeze if you give it haste.

Stupid Complicated Game Alert: If Compelled Obedience's target survives the explosion, it's free to return to its previous controller. That said, the explosion in question is enough to take out the average dragon, so this won't come up very often even aside from the fact that only you can set it off.

Man, Star Waving Mad is what finally turned me off to FiW. Spikabuse ain't something I dig on, ya dig?

Wait, so what's WotC replacing "Converted Mana Cost" with?

Will you be addressing "How Applejack Won the War", too? :ajsmug:

Decorated Officer: "When my bravery was recognized, I was awarded with this gigantic, writhing mass of tendrils originating from beyond time and space. It looks really good on my lapel, right?"

What makes it even funnier is that this is what's going to happen the vast majority of the time; there are very few reasons a sane person would play a 6-mana 2/2, and getting a 12/12 trample instead is one of them.

"Gypsy Bard" is far and away my favourite song of Friendship is Witchcraft. It's been a long time since I last watched the later episodes of the series, so a lot of the specifics of it like Raincloud and Applejack being enslaved I forgot about until rewatching the episodes for these blogs. But "Gypsy Bard" has always stuck with me, and I've gone back to listen to it again and again over the years, both for its catchy tune, and for its lyrical cleverness. In fact, it's so good that it actually went viral on TikTok and found success outside the fandom, a rare achievement even for a music scene as large as MLP's.

Applejack wouldn't have needed an iPod Nano if she hadn't thrown away the sound system inside the hay bale at the beginning of the episode.

Recasting AJ’s rodeo blue ribbons as war medals is honestly ingenious, especially given the sun iconography on some of them. Though the one with the big fat “1” on it raises some questions… unless Applejack was leading the 1st Ponyville Infantry.

Numbers are forbidden -- that's an upside-down barbed stake. For Applejack's skills in tent assembly.

The "Applejack" chant joke made me laugh the hardest. The endless train was my second-favorite joke. I appreciate that Sherclop Pones puts in the effort to make the animation edits look seamless.

"I've been kidnapped into slavery." No reaction. "There are no Nanos." Gasp!

The clock on the bomb counts down in real time -- no editing is done to make the countdown seem shorter or longer. I'd expect nothing less.

Poor Raincloud. Pinkie's spell still has two more entities left to resurrect (which is why I genuinely wasn't sure whether the bomb was going to take out Applejack), but I'm not hopeful she'll be one of the beneficiaries.

At the end, there's a credit for "Rainbow Dash Prime." Was that the surprisingly accurate Rainbow Dash voice during Raincloud's first scene?

During the short, I was wondering how they would replace "the punch has been Spiked," which was already a solid pun. "The Spike has been punched" is a worthy substitution... although Twilight told Pinkie to slap Spike, not punch hm.

Raincloud says "each other creature", so she won't hurt herself.

"Mana Value".

It still is calculated the same.

Still starts to be a problem if you end up doubling the trigger the way I suggested (or more; you're in the color pair of extra combat steps!)

The academic in me would be mildly affronted by all the cracks at education and literacy in this, but I'm not because I have a sense of humor.

Let's be honest, the whole thing with the tentacle horror wouldn't be out of place in the actual show.


Poor Raincloud. Pinkie's spell still has two more entities left to resurrect (which is why I genuinely wasn't sure whether the bomb was going to take out Applejack), but I'm not hopeful she'll be one of the beneficiaries.

It should be noted that the portal specifically only brings back parents. Grandparents count and any given species does too, as shown by Fluttershy's father and by the bird, but only parents.


Raincloud never damages herself with her ability. Doubling the trigger doesn't change that.

I was responding to the lines:

Raincloud damages your creatures too, even itself.


Oh, and damage on creatures lasts until the end of the turn, so it'll go down to a stiff breeze if you give it haste.

(emphasis added)

These lines are incorrect. The ability explicitly says "other creatures". The full ability, for reference:

Whenever Raincloud, Electric Outcast enters the battlefield or attacks, it deals 1 damage to each other creature.

Yes, I'm aware. Anything I don't address is implicitly conceded.

Upon closer inspection of the information we have so far regarding Pony Life season 2, it appears either we're not actually getting a shorter season or we're not actually back to 10 minutes episodes. I sincerely hope it's the former, which does also seem more likely from what we know. I guess we'll see soon.

I think Twilight the Unready's reminder text for Ward is off.

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