The Gammaverse Group 62 members · 7 stories
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Canon and Word of Faust sources tell us solidly that earth ponies, unicorns, and pegasus ponies are all members of the same species... but what determines which you wind up as?

One idea is that it's hereditary, with occasional recessive traits arising (see the Cake Twins, born to earth ponies) but that's somewhat limiting, and wouldn't help much with conversion, when (over in The First Choice) a man can be an Earth Pony and his niece a pegasus.

One of my ideas, for natural born ponies, is that the decision happens in the womb, dependent on environmental factors (levels of background magic, weather patterns, how much food the mother gets), but that doesn't work for converts.

The idea I like is that the convert becomes what is appropriate for their talent, an echo of their future cutie mark, (cuz hey, it's magic) that puts them in a body suited to them, a form they can use.

Guardian_Gryphon
Group Admin

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So, I'll tackle this as the two separate, but related, incredibly interesting issues that it is. :pinkiehappy:

One idea is that it's hereditary, with occasional recessive traits arising (see the Cake Twins, born to earth ponies) but that's somewhat limiting, and wouldn't help much with conversion, when (over in The First Choice) a man can be an Earth Pony and his niece a pegasus.

One of my ideas, for natural born ponies, is that the decision happens in the womb, dependent on environmental factors (levels of background magic, weather patterns, how much food the mother gets), but that doesn't work for converts.

The subspecies of foals can be determined like a punnet square in a sense. All subspecies are *possible* for any given foal, but not all are *probable*

Here is an example;
Two Pegasus parents are extremely likely to have a Pegasus foal every time they conceive, but there is a small, (appreciable enough for it to happen) chance of the other subspecies manifesting.

Now where it gets more interesting is mixed relationships. A Pegasus and a Unicorn have something like a 65-70% chance to have either (a) Pegasus or Unicorn foal(s), and also a visible chance to have an Earth Pony foal.

On-top of that, you're right; there is some influence from environmental factors that can (but doesn't always) stilt the likelihood of subspecies in a foal by as much as +or- 5%.

Now...

The idea I like is that the convert becomes what is appropriate for their talent, an echo of their future cutie mark, (cuz hey, it's magic) that puts them in a body suited to them, a form they can use.

Its very similar to this in Gammaverse. Your subspecies is (in both Diamond Dog, and Pony Conversion) determined by your most defining trait (even if its only most defining by a hair.)

For example; Stan became a Pegasus because his defining trait is his brashness and adventurous spirit. However deeply buried it was under an encrusting of moral cowardice at first, the fact that he was striving to be one of those traditional hard-boiled detective-style reporters spoke to the nature deep down, that is now much more visible since he's begun to mature (in some ways anyways. :rainbowlaugh: )

If your defining trait is brashness, or bravery, adventurousness, or daring, you will be a Pegasus.

If your defining trait is logic, organization, a thirst for knowledge, and/or a thirst for Wisdom, and/or a thirst for power, you will be a Unicorn.

If your defining trait is altruism, or a strong work ethic, or empathy you will be an Earth Pony.

Now mind you I say 'defining.' You could be highly inquisitive, like Stan, and still be a Pegasus, like Stan, because like Stan your thirst for thrill slightly edges out your thirst for knowledge.

On one level this is indeed driven by pragmatics, on another its a subtle trait of the magic in Potions; it doesn't want to destroy your identity. With Gryphic potion this manifests as the fail-safe; it would rather destroy you than break your defining deep identity. With Pony or Diamond Dog potion, it manifests as your subspecies aligning with your traits.

For reference with Diamond Dogs;

If your defining trait is aggression, or honor, or vigilance, or valor, you will be a Lupine.

If your defining trait is cunning, or curiosity, or manipulativity, or resourcefulness, you will be Vulpine.

If your defining trait is greed, or even more simplistic a-moral materialism, or a hard work ethic, or efficiency, then you will be Troll.

With Stan I'd say the thirst for knowledge is only in service to REPORTING that news, and making headlines, etc. making that trait exist only in service to his traits of brashness.

And I think I'd wind up a unicorn, given my inclination towards knowledge, logic, and wisdom.

Still sorting out where some of my characters would start, and where they'd wind up.

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