• Published 10th Apr 2012
  • 17,604 Views, 663 Comments

Fallout Equestria: Rules of Engagement - Greenhorne

A Marine in Afganistan is transported to Equestria only to find a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

  • ...

State of the Fanfic

Author's Note:

I know this isn't the update you guys were hoping for, but the news isn't all bad. People who were following my account may have noticed that I've finally started writing again. It's a new story, and it may not be to all of your tastes, but at least I'm writing something. If I can get back into the rhythm of writing maybe, finally, I can pick up this fic again and actually make something of it.

My new fic is a totally different genre, but the way it takes a silly, cliche story idea way too seriously may be familiar to you if you've enjoyed my work on this story.

I spent a long time agonizing over RoE. Truth be told I've never been great at writing. I get occasional bursts of creativity but writing consistently, even when I set aside hours or in some cases days to get something written, has just been impossible for me.

Forcing myself to try and get RoE written before moving on to anything else was actually a really bad decision in hindsight, perhaps if I'd realised that sooner I wouldn't have stalled out so much as a writer.

I'm still blown away at the support RoE got back in the day, and the occasional messages I get from people who've been following my little story for the better part of a decade still make my day.

As a consolation for waiting so long, and in case I never do come back to this fic, I'm going to give you guys all the unpublished content I had, as well as the plot outline and some unused worldbuilding. If this story never updates again hopefully this will give you some closure.

Reminiscing on how great it was to share this fic with all of you makes me want to burst out into song, but that isn't conveyed well through text so you'll just have to take my word for it when I say I love each and every one of you. I hope you've all had fun these past seven years and I wish you all the best for the future.

- Anon3mous1

Chapter 6:

“The insurgent leader is a stallion standing on his hind legs. You don’t win his heart and mind. You kill him.” —Maj Sean Leach, AWS, 1976, on counterinsurgency

My only thought was that I had to keep moving. I crawled through the darkness, my body too heavy to stand. Flashes of light lit up the horizon, accompanied by booms of high explosives. Occasionally the harsher retort of small arms fire echoed across the plain. My fingers dug into the coarse sand and I dragged myself forward, to where I didn’t know.

A figure cast a silhouette on the horizon, a Marine, but his face was cast in shadow. He yelled to me, but I didn’t hear words. The ground beneath me turned to void and I was slipping, he grabbed my hand, but I couldn’t feel his grip. I slipped further into the void and the figure held my arm. The void gave me nothing to push against, no matter how I struggled, I just sank deeper into the inky blackness.

The figure laughed a deep and ragged laugh as I struggled, his shape morphing into that of a hellhound. He held my severed arm and grinned wickedly, watching with glee as I slipped away. I screamed in pain, but it made no sound. The void took me.


I woke with a start at the sound of a key being turned in the lock. I felt felt surprisingly good, all the aches and pains of my body seemed to have lessened, even some of the aches I had carried for years. I would later learn that this was a lingering effect of the large number of healing potions the dogs had used to patch me up. Yes, they actually call them ‘healing potions’. I guess being a medic is a hell of a lot simpler when you can carry around cure-all in a bottle.

I tried to sit up and immediately noticed I didn’t have my left arm to push against the floor.

Fido himself was standing in the doorway holding my pipbuck. I didn’t know whether on not to be relieved that my severed arm was no longer inside it. I think some naive part of me felt like if I could just get my arm back it could somehow be reattached.

I nudged Ink Blot who had yet to wake. The colt groaned softly before opening his eyes and realising the situation. The colt pressed himself up against me to shrink away from the hellhound, once again picking me as the lesser of two evils.

“Tell me Devil Dog, how did you come by this pipbuck?” The king asked in his somewhat forced eloquence.


Major arcs:

  • Current arcs (as of chapter 5):

    • Survival/health
    • Way back home
    • Insanity (maladaptive coping, vivid dreams blur into reality, hallucinations)
    • Stabletec
    • Ink Blot
    • Hell hounds (courier/diplomat)
  • Future arcs:

    • Canterlot
    • Warband (taking control of hellhound pack(s))
    • Power armor
    • Mountain ponies
    • Stabletec part II
    • The Return

Chapter 1:

  • In convoy

    • Convoy attacked
    • Explosion/Injury [begin arc, Survival/Health]
  • Wake up in Equestria

    • Discover pip buck
    • begin journey (make sure to describe wasteland in more detail) [Begin arc, ‘Way Back Home’]
  • Find Ponyville (describe in more detail)
  • Attacked by raiders

Chapter 2:

  • First sunrise on Eqis

    • Interrogation (Skull)
  • Scavenging

    • Narrowly avoid tripmine
  • Stabletec orb encounter

    • Exposition, [begin Stabletec arc]
    • Destruction
    • Unconsciousness
  • Dream sequence, Kandahar field hospital [Begin Insanity arc]
  • Reencounter skull

    • Awake to a fight
    • Stab the eye.
  • Treat Wounds

    • Run out of water

Chapter 3:

  • Second Sunrise on Equis

    • Radioactive water
    • Further stabletec exposition
  • Encounter convoy

    • Attempted negotiations
    • Negotiations failed
    • Attacked by convoy
    • Return fire and destroy convoy
    • Observe corpses
    • Raid supplies
    • Find colt [Begin Ink Blot arc]
  • Encounter raiders

    • Rescue colt
    • Escape
    • Hypothermia
    • See Celestia (Hallucination?)
    • Treat colt with raided medicine
    • Sleep

Chapter 4:

  • Dream sequence pre-war equestria

    • Attacked by mane six
  • Wake to Ink Blot’s question, at gunpoint

    • Fail to talk down
    • Click
    • Threaten
    • Explain
    • Eat Breakfast
  • Begin journey to nearest settlement to drop off Ink Blot

    • Discussion, exchange names
  • Encounter Steel Rangers

    • Captured
    • Transport
    • Rangers attacked by Hell Hounds
    • Severely injured by collateral blast damage
    • Unconsciousness
  • Dream Sequence, back on the FOB

    • Ink Blot shot
    • Feel own injuries
    • Pony changes to a wounded soldier
    • Can’t walk, crawling
    • Soldier becomes a child
    • Can’t call out, choking
    • Child levitates a gun and turns back into a pony
    • Bang.
  • Awake on operating table in hellhound cave

    • Treatment is successful, though painful
    • Hell hounds instruct us to kill Ink Blot, to prove he isn’t a pony Spy.

Chapter 5:

  • Attempt to bluff

    • Somewhat successful
  • King Fido

    • Exposition
    • Allows us to live
    • Expects us to do something for him
    • Investigate Pipbuck - broadcasting tag
    • Arm severed below elbow in order to remove pipbuck
  • Thrown in a cell with Ink Blot, situation unclear

    • Ink Blot has believed the bluff to be the truth and half-heartedly tries to kill us again
    • Character development
  • Eat, Sleep

Chapter 6:

  • Dream Sequence
  • The king’s gambit

    • Infiltrate Steel Ranger base
    • Disable seismic trackers and defences
    • Trigger EMP
  • Cyberlimbs ‘r us
  • Release
  • Emotional breakdown
  • Hallucination? (~?Chest infection)


Mountain ponies:
Mountain ponies are slightly smaller than other breeds, and purebreds are only found in the ‘earth pony’ variety. ‘Earth pony’ is used hesitantly because while mountain ponies also possess neither a horn nor wings, there are certain physiological differences that make them a distinct breed. Their small stature and shaggy coats help them survive at higher altitudes.

Mountain ponies developed from a tribe of religious fundamentalist Earth Ponies that split off from the main herd at around the time of Equestria’s founding, in order to settle the mountainous region to the west of the Everfree forest. Some historians believe that this move was in order to place them outside the influence of the Unicorn tribe, which they felt were making a power grab during the amalgamation (disputed). Another theory (according to religious text) is that they split off during the famine that preceded the amalgamation.

According to mountain pony religious belief, in the beginning times unicorns stole power from the gods and used it to subjugate the Earth Ponies. The Pegasi were originally guardians for the gods, who were cast down and made mortal for conspiring with the Unicorns. The gods punished pony kind for their arrogance by forcing the unicorns to control the sun and moon, and the Pegasi to control the weather. If they wanted the power of the gods, so too came the responsibilies; but in their hubris, ponies did not bow down before the gods’ and admit their foalishness. With their incomplete control the Pegasi and Unicorns couldn’t match the gods’ divine interventions, and soon their crops started to fail. Still the ponies refused to see the truth, they blamed one another for their famine and pony kind was brought to the brink of war.

This angered the gods and they sent down ice storms to smite the wicked ponies who refused to see reason. The gods sent down a prophet, who commanded the faithful to cross the desert in order to find the promised land, where nature occurred without pony interference, as the gods intended. Though the land they settled was an inhospitable one, that was the gods’ plan for them. The harshness of their land forced them to live nomadically, but this prevented them from acquiring possessions for them to covet and fight over. Death and hardship were not uncommon, but this forced them to pull together, reminded them of their own mortality and prevented them from becoming arrogant as was the hubris of the other ponies.

Strangely enough, though the Mountain Ponies despise unicorn magic, they have their own peculiar magic type, though they don’t refer to it such; they refer to it as ‘evocation’. Certain Mountain Ponies posses the ability to reshape matter and energy on a fundamental level. Unlike unicorns they cannot conjure objects using mana, nor can they transmute one object directly into another. Instead they reshape an object by manipulating the structure of the matter already within it. The objects must be in direct contact with their hooves. These ponies are referred to as the god-touched, and are revered, they bring honor and status to their families. Considered among the faithful to be a gift from the gods for their faithfulness.

Researchers have postulated that this ‘evocation’ is actually a powerful manifestation of regular Earth Pony magic. It has been observed that Earth Ponies possess certain abilities when dealing with earth, particularly with regards to farming, though the exact mechanism by which this occurs is still a mystery. It is different enough from Unicorn magic that it defies classification by any known magical theorems. As a much clearer demonstration of this magic type, it has been suggested that a study of ‘evocation’ would allow a much better insight into this ‘Earth Pony Magic’, that Unicorn scholars have struggled with for generations. Unfortunately Mountain Ponies are an insular society, and their mistrust of Unicorn magic and protectiveness surrounding ‘god touched’ have thus far been insurmountable obstacles to conducting research of this nature.

In the past, the unnamed mountainous territory of the mountain ponies was of little interest to Equestria. Though it went unmarked on maps, their control of the territory was largely uncontested. It’s strategic importance however, led to its occupation by Zebracian forces in the early years of the war (before the Littlehorn incident). Rather than engage the Zebracian forces directly, and risk escalating hostilities, Equestrian spies used Griffonian Mercenary companies to arm the mountain ponies with the training and military hardware necessary to fight a guerrilla war against the occupying forces. The mountainous terrain interspersed with untamed forest valleys proved ideal for this type of conflict and Zebracian were forced to withdraw from the region, suffering heavy losses. Towards the end of the war however, Equestria was becoming increasingly desperate for coal, and other resources. Equestria attempted to trade with the Mountain Ponies, but were flatly refused by the tribal elders. When the Equestrians came to mine the area without approval, the Mountain ponies fought them off with the same weapons and techniques given to them by Equestrian intelligence. Unusable by either side, the mountain region remained neutral throughout the war, and remains relatively unchanged even two hundred years after the bombs fell.

Despite the strong religious leadership of the land, interactions with outsiders have led to a tempering of the general populace. While the older ponies are more entrenched in tribal society, their family ties and responsibilities making exile unconscionable, younger ponies are sometimes known to rebel, and question their country's leadership, even to the point of leaving their tribes. These exiles both voluntary and involuntary have been forced to band together in their own group, known as the Tribeless. The Tribeless are shunned by the ruling elite, but still hold tacit support among much of the general populace, leading to the present state of general discontent with the country’s leadership. The elite hold much of their power through the priesthood, their control the religious texts and the god touched, who are taken from their families to be trained by the priesthood at a young age, once they start displaying signs of evocational ability.

The stability of the region has recently been shaken by a young, yet very powerful god touched who has defected to the Tribeless. With her help the Tribeless have secured a number of weapons caches and freed a number of slaves. News of their victories has swelled their numbers and support even further. At this point the Tribeless are starting to look like a viable resistance to the Priesthood, yet the Priesthood cannot order their extermination without risking outright revolt.

(possibly radioactive fallout resulted in evocational ability, along with deaths)

Comments ( 13 )

Holy shit amigo, it took me a second to even remember what this story was when I got hit by a notification, glad to see you're not dead. In terms of writing feeling like a chore, you need to take a step back and look at it objectively, as in the amount of work required for the story you have in mind. Don't fret, no one will ever make their magnum opus so early on. I highly recommend you focus on short stories or one offs whenever you get that creative burst, and if you truly enjoy what you worked on, then think about continuing it into an epic. I've seen so many fanfics with incredible concepts oozing with potential die, simply because the author got too ahead of themselves.

And as alway, welcome to Costco, I love you

I'd be sad to see this die, but you can't force yourself to write. I'm glad that you haven't lost your creative spark though!

Interesting... So these mountain ponies no doubt take a large part in the potential futures that this story has?

That would be the plan, yes.

No-one is more disappointed in the wasted potential this story had than I am, but sometimes we make the wrong decisions and things just don't pan out.

Thanks for the words of encouragement. Time and effort were never in short supply for this fic. What conspired against us was a combination of crippling self-doubt and a writing skill level that was never quite up to my own nebulous unattainable standards. Nevertheless it was a learning experience for me, and hopefully at least passingly entertaining for all of you to watch our protagonist's adventure, even if it was cut tragically short.

May we meet again in a happier comment section.

Oh my god your still alive? For real I thought you died and this wouldnt come back. If it does come back thanks a lot. I understand the notion of just not being able to write. It really sucks. Good to know your alive

Glad that your back dude, hopefully you can succeed in writing more of this story. Xd

Would love to see this live again, it is very good to say the least. Having an modern day military human dealing with Fallout Equetria is pretty novel after all. Still regardless of what you do, just glad to know you back at it again.

hey man, you might not be the best writer, but youre still way better at it than i am. I have no prompts and i litterally just go off the top of my head almost all the time with only 3 stories writen. the first one being a shit fic, the other 2 actually being more serious, and the other 2 being self insert stories. i also dont have an editor or a computer. ive been having to write while im at school, or at home on my xbox with an awkward to use browser since microsoft edge is broken.

Well i still support this story :twilightsmile: sobie take your time and write when you have the inspiration (plus as an retired GROM opreative i'd like to see where this story goes)

Presently I'm attempting to write a story that's serious and self-insert at the same time.

nice. my own 2 self inserts, i try to keep serious when possible, but I can't help but indulge in shenanigans everyonce and a while

Aaaaaaaa he's not dead man love this story hopefully he does meet little pip at some point

Don't let the flame die out boi! Also give our Marine fren a new arm, robotic or no

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