• Member Since 2nd Jan, 2012
  • offline last seen September 22nd

fallenpenguin


I'm a guy who likes penguins and ponies. I sometimes draw stuff and now I write, apparently.


E
Source

A gray giant appears in the Everfree Forest. Standing as tall as Canterlot mountain, it looks down at the little town of Ponyville with six glowing eyes. Then it speaks.

---
Another one-shot, this time a bit more sci-fi. The entire thing was inspired by this artwork. I wrote the first part almost half a year ago, then added some more to it and fixed a bit here and there.
Whether you like or dislike the story, please leave a comment and criticize away or I can't improve my writing.
Just like my other story Persistence, I have to give special thanks to joeSFX for helping me edit this story!
---
It hit the feature box on 2015/07/15. Thank you to each and every one of you! :twilightblush:

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 99 )

this was fun

Much potential for world building if you decide to come back to it, but it stands alone just fine as a one shot. Nice job!

6207606
Thanks :pinkiehappy:


6207647
Thanks, yeah, there are multiple ways one could expand on this. A political thriller, a societal study or an adventure story set after this one.

You know, I usually avoid HiE fics like the actual plague, but I figured this one wasn't so long and it actually surprised me. I was kinda thinking that it'd seem unrealistic if the descision to cede territory to a foreign space race would be determined solely on Twilight's tour with Aruna, but the way you cut it off at the end there before the 4000-years-later part implied that there must've been more — clever. The ending had a nice little touch.

Hmmm, you ask for critique, well ok I guess. I like it but I'm not really sure.

We're presented with something initially that is truly enigmatic but before long we've met Colonel Hawthorne, an apparently regular old human. If they're escaping the heat death of their universe then we're talking about a vast span of time and the consequent change humans would undoubtedly undergo over such a long period, which would be consistent with the huge unknowable being at the start...but then...we're given a regular human.

Also, concerning Twilights visions passing through the portal, the following

“This universe will be ours soon.”

seemed portentious but doesn't go anywhere and Twilight doesn't ask about it, you'd think she would be a little curious. Whilst she helped the sick boy she has no curiosity about a medical system that apparently ignores the poor. Then we're 4000 years later and the story ends.

I'm not really comfortable criticizing someones work here, so I hope you will take this as just what I got from the story. I certainly wouldn't thumb it down or anything like that, but I can't really thumb it up either.
Was this perhaps going to be something larger that didn't come about or do you have plans for it?
Does the first part of the story and the part 4000 years later 'bookend' some unwritten part?

(edited for spelling, sorry).

Not bad. :ajsmug:

Short and sweet. Jumps around a bit, but it works. My one complaint is that the Colonel has grey hair. I can see that most people wouldn't want their bodies altered too drastically, but at this point, humans should have the technology to genetically halt the aging process.

One of the commenters has a point. That line about the universe one day being thiers is a loose end that was never tied up and the part where the poor are apparently ignored would surely cause Twilight to object.

The story is good, but it seems unfinished. It felt like it was building up to something, but then it ends with an apparent happy ending that leaves me empty because there was a severe lack of middle. You see what I'm getting at?

I WAAAANNNNNTTTTTT MMMMMOOOOOOOOORRRRRRREEEEEEE

6208169
You could probably write an entire story of political intrigue and whatnot just about the part you're referencing. You bet, a lot of stuff went down in those 4000 years :raritywink:

6208192
First of all, thanks for the critique! I did ask for it, so no worries there. I'm going to cherry pick your points a bit, if that's alright :twilightblush:

We're given a regular human.

He looks like how we think a human looks like. Then again, he might be thousands of years old and humanity might be a cluster of T-1000s, so who knows :scootangel:

Also, concerning Twilights visions passing through the portal [...] doesn't go anywhere [...] Whilst she helped the sick boy she has no curiousity about a medical system that apparently ignores the poor. Then we're 4000 years later and the story ends.

You're right, this is more world building than story in places and I'm totally cheating with letting the reader do all the work and fill in the blanks. As for your specific example, in-universe Twilight's exhausted after her spell. Out-of-universe I wanted to get this story out there. I'm not all that comfortable starting a long ongoing stories and I certainly don't want to be the guy who writes a 2k word chapter every once in a blue moon.

Was this perhaps going to be something larger that didn't come about or do you have plans for it? Do the first part of the story and the part 4000 years later 'bookend' some unwritten part?

Honestly, it's a patchwork of two short scenes (first and second contact) that came to me and was built from there. Going by the finished story, yes, you could definitely say that the actual story is between the lines (or snapshots, if you will).

I'm not really comfortable criticizing someones work here, so I hope you will take this as just what I got from the story. I certainly wouldn't thumb it down or anything like that, but I can't really thumb it up either.

You do what you feel is right, that's what the system's there for. I'll definitely thumb up your comment because I asked for critique and you delivered. Again, thanks!

6208397
Thank you! :twilightblush:

6208722
You know, I threw in the colonies as a nod to fellow BSG fans, but I completely forgot about that narration. THAT would have been a great reference. I'm really tempted to edit that part now, but alas, I am not George Lucas and this isn't Star Wars 289th Special Remastered Edition with extra CGI...

6209236 I memorized that part by heart now. Thanks for putting that in. Bronies who like BSG are rare.

And the reason space battles aren't realistic is because of George Lucas basing them off of Korean War air combat.

SO SAY WE ALL!

6209260 Still, though. The feels are so much like Past Sins! It's an amazing story...

A brony that loves penguins, too? You and me are going to get along just fine, my friend.

Oh yeah, loved the story. :rainbowkiss:

You should definitely continue with this.
I do have reservations about it in it's short form, especially the 'flatness' of Twilight but considered as a vertical 'snapshot' of a larger narrative it works very well as a sort of 'teaser' trailer.
Perhaps viewing it in such a cinematic fashion puts it in a different light.
Regardless, I hope you build on this. Anyway I'll thumb it up and 'follow' and hope to see some long form expansion.




God I hope I don't sound this pompous in real life...

6209075
Maybe he has gray hair because he likes the color. Maybe it's his favorite and Hawthorne always gets what Hawthorne wants :trollestia:

6209192
I wrote an answer to the comment you're referencing and I'll happily admit that it's a giant tease :scootangel:

6209203
MEEEEE TOOOOOOO :pinkiecrazy:

6209260
Yes, I've not come across many.

6209295
One day they shall rule over the world :pinkiecrazy:

6209312
That is definitely a better way to look at it. It's not a detailed complete story, but supposed to evoke the feeling of something more within the reader. Well, at least I get to write something pompous, too :trollestia:
Let's put it this way: IF I continue this, it definitely has to wait until after my thesis and other exams are done.

I really enjoyed that! It was very interesting!

As a few other people have said, this has the potential to become a massive story with a lot of world building.

I can only hope you decide to do more with this!

6209372

I wrote an answer to the comment you're referencing and I'll happily admit that it's a giant tease :scootangel:

Ahhh, so not the heat death of my earlier comment. I was looking at the wrong universe.

A challenger has appeared, colour me intrigued.


I really hope I'm not pissing up the wrong tree here...

**********EDITED FOR CLARITY***********

I now realise that my meaning here was totally unclear.
What I meant was that it had occurred to me that the line “This universe will be ours soon” by the huge baldy skull fellas in the transit between universes might actually be referring the the humans' universe rather than Twilights's, as the line reads.
Then it occurred to me that this might be the real reason the humans et al seek to escape into another universe. Whilst the humans' civilisation would still be very old, this would sidestep the problem of their seeming too young to fear the heat death of their universe.
When fallenpenguin referred to a giant tease in relation to the giants, I thought I might be onto something with them being a third actor on the stage.

Please excuse my obscurity.:derpytongue2:

6208397 not bad at all, this guy deserves a like :moustache:

bep

My complaint is that the universe will end at around one googolplex C.E. so The population would be enormous! There is no way they could get everyone through fast enough.

During that extra step images flashed before Twilight’s inner eye. There was a city with a bright sun in the sky. The sun got brighter and brighter as she felt it singe her fur. From the white light a tree emerged. Instead of leaves Twilight saw stars and galaxies in its branches.She was standing in a deep canyon, its walls lined with hooded figures that were as tall as the first gray giant that had stepped into Equestria. One of them lifted its hood to reveal a skull where its head should be.

“This universe will be ours soon.

Where were you going with this? Nothing else seems to happen involving this.

Great story, by the way.

6209791 what if they are going to equestria 2 million years before the universe ends?

bep

6210115 Still, a googol is 100 to the power of ten, and a googolplex is 100 to the power of 10 squared.

6210168 Those numbers should actually be reversed. 100 to the power of 10 only gives you a 1 with 20 zeroes. A googol is 10 to the power of 100 (1 with a hundred zeroes). And a googolplex is 10 to the power of a googol. Produces a veeeeery different result.

6209192 That line about the universe, to me, seems like it is Death itself proclaiming that human universe will soon die, therefore "belonging to them."

6209372 That's not really good story telling.

WOW this was so AWESOME!

Well this clearly can't happen since I'll be ending the human race tomorrrroooohhheyyyyy! Look at that shiny distraction over there!

*quickly hides doomsday timetable*

Nice read. I was kind of hoping for some kind of interaction with a creature like the Celestials from Marvel comics instead though. Perhaps finding out the Celestials created the planet Equestria rests on in some kind of experiment with creating a magic-centric world and "solar-system" and then millennia later coming in to evaluate and judge said experiment.

My general opinion of this story over all is a negative one due largely to the fact I finish this story feeling tricked and that I just watched someone going on about how great their little idea world is. This story lacked a great many things such as consistency, real conflict, characterization, or even much of a plot at all. I even what little characterization there was felt largely out of sync with the established characters of the show. Though perhaps my largest issue is with the description of sci fi world you are seeking to portray.

The largest problem you had with your world in general is the fact you set it so absurdly far in the future. At that point in time nearly everything you describe should be all but impossible and obsolete in the extreme. Let us take for example your crowded market scene, even if you were to tell me this was the absolute scum sucking lowest of low for the universe, I have a hard time accepting that any of this would exist as it is shown here. You are describing a scene that is rare and fading even today thanks to technology, in this age the market should be completely silent aside from maybe the sounds of people walking. All advertising and exchange of goods would be digital and likely have the purchased items materialize at a person's home, even if this is the ass crack of the universe. Even the poorest of poor would be living in conditions many of us would consider the heights of modern comfort and disease/sickness of any sort should be outright impossible, much less something Twilight, someone who has never been shown to have any medical experience or training, would be able to fix in minutes. The sheer unimaginable amount of time you have described passing would have technology at a point where we literally are unable to imagine its most basic of concepts. Even having humans still being anything even remotely recognizable as human instead of perhaps truly being the grey sexless synthetic titans your title pictures hints at is a betrayal of the world you are trying to build.

Carrying on both your lack of consistency and plot in general is perhaps the only scene in your story that made me sit up and take notice. During your teleporter scene you describe the first real sign of a real conflict with the hooded figures wanting to claim Twilight's universe. However, this niggling beginning of a plot and conflict is completely ignored as soon it passes as it is never mentioned or hinted at again and Twilight doesn't even stop to go, "That was odd." Even at the end it doesn't hint at any conflict happening or having Equestrians being the latest bottom of the barrel race after their universe was taken from them, just more "Boy the future sure is nifty huh?" that seemed to be the only thing this story had to say. Then again Twilight shouldn't have even been the one to go in the first place, much less alone.

With Twilight being one of Equestrias, get out of doom free cards, no one should have even suggested that she go, much less Celestia who seeks to shelter Twilight especially from political things such as this. The fact that none of the military advisers that were present, apparently to simply wheeze and gawk, didn't raise a fuss over sending their number one super weapon over alone and unprotected is almost laughable. In a scenario such as this it seems much more likely that Celestia or Luna would be the ones to take the trip due to their power/experience/knowledge and they would do so under armed escort. Even if this was refused, for whatever reason, I find it unlikely they'd let it be Twilight who made the solo trip.

This is not a horrible fic really, it is just a very poorly handled one that will need heavy editing in order to become something I find respectable. There is a good story hiding under this pile of bad choices and poor decisions. If you don't want to change the general scene you've built for future world, you need to move the time line radically closer to the present, perhaps a thousand years at most though even that is really pushing it, and upon doing so change the reason for the visit. Perhaps humans and a few allies are fleeing an army of robotic life forms and seek refuge among Equestria's stars. You then need to build conflict and plot around the idea, such as worrying if these humans are on the up and up and even if they are if their enemies won't simply be able to follow them and ravage Equestria as well.

Again you have the potential for something good here, it's just buried rather deep is all.

I always love reading neat one-shots like this.

Darn, so many stories that would make great series but are one-shots. TuT

6210994 Ah, wishes of men and monsters. Time is but string, a limited amount being sewn into the fabrics of our life. Yet, it must run out. We may create beautiful tapestries, or depictions of evil. We have only a little string. We best make it count for the things that matter.

What is right? What is wrong? There is no such things. They do not exist.

Tell me. Is stealing wrong?

An entrepreneur, just starting his business, when some punk steals some of his bread.

A starving child, dressed in rags, not knowing when, or if, his next meal will come.

There is only perspective.

What is life? Is it something we can hold in our hands or contain in our hearts?

Is it blood, flowing through our veins?

Is it civilization, with peoples and places?

Is it chaos?

Is it harmony?

Creation?

Destruction?

Light?

Dark?

Life?

Death?

We cannot know.

Only wait.

And live.

6210936 Think about EG... that and this story are about the same, but one is canon, so in reality this isn't that bad.

6210597 I'm immune to distractions i know what you are planing! :flutterrage:

That whole “This universe will be ours soon.” thing was kinda odd, ominous, foreboding...

And utterly useless since nothing was ever done with it. I mean, there you build up potential to take this somewhere interesting and dark, and in fact start with showing a darker side of the other-universe society to Twilight... but no. Next thing I know, it's "4000 years later". :unsuresweetie:

So, yeah, I really enjoyed this story, but as Fana Farouche already remarked, there was definitely more potential in it.

6209641
6210546
Thanks :twilightblush:

6209791
I definitely thought about that. What is a plausible time frame for such a logistical nightmare? My thoughts were that if your entire universe goes, you're going to pour all resources into that singular goal. They have FTL drives and they will definitely have made portal stations an essential part to every installation akin to life support systems.
If you've seen the Stargate series, they could probably take that approach and launch seed ships to drop gates on habitable worlds.

6210055
6210444
That describes pretty well what I was going for. As for Twilight not referencing it, I was struggling with that. The visions are supposed to be more akin to what happens in some movies involving teleportation/time travel: blurry visions and flashes that are supposed to make sense to the audience, but not necessarily the character. Twilight is a bit dazed after stepping out of the portal and she's not really sure what she saw.

6210481
More a this is kinda neat, if you don't think about it too much than a this sucks, I hope. Joking aside, yes, this is definitely something I need to improve in my writing. I like sticking to the bare essentials I need to tell a story and implying as much as I can. That's what I learned in the creative writing classes I took, BUT I tend to go overboard with it.

6210792
Oh, now I'm interested. Are there any good Marvel crossovers involving the Celestials on fimfiction?

6210936
I don't really know how to answer this. Before reading it I asked myself, if I did that badly to warrant such a long comment. After reading it I can't really find anything to disagree with in your critique. Thank you for taking the time to read the story and write out your thoughts on it, I'll definitely take them to heart either for my next story or something in this universe, if I return to it.

6210994
Read my other story, I did the same thing there :trollestia:

This story is good, but there are some problems with it. Others had already mentioned it, so I won't. I'll talk about other thing. Technological inconsistency.
I know it's a mix of different races, but even then it shouldn't be as big of a difference as it is. On the first meeting (the giant) and later with the "gate" humanity presented itself as a type 3 maybe fledgling type 4 civilization. That is a really serious shit. But then, you made them look like fledgling to solid type 1. It's like you would went into LHC lab, and engineer there was using stone ax.
Second thing. If humanity is here at least 4.5 billion years old, they should be type 5 by that point or even higher, and then everything else here looks even more ridiculously outdated. Furthermore, if the universe is dying, and there's still humanity, than they are around 15 billion years old, so it's beyond mind melting.
"Food"? "Industry"? Their bodies by that point, if even corporeal, probably would be made out of quantum computing femtomachines. They should be able to play strings like one plays guitar today. They should be able to create matter at will, planets, like a kid creates a dirt ball in sandbox, stars, as easily as pronouncing the word for it.

6211645 Ya think? Yeah, I know the old saying of story telling, "Show, don't tell" the thing is, you didn't show enough and the things that I mentioned, you "showed" part of, but didn't show enough of. The part with the poor being ignored. Were you implying that when Twilight objected to the treatment of the poor, the government of that other universe just complied easily with her? If so, that's kind of lame since in story telling, there needs to be some conflict and a government that complies with everything easily sort of removes that from the treatment of the poor situation. The ending obviously implies a happy ending with the ponies living in harmony with the extra-universal aliens, but what about the other species of the planet and the possible inhabited planets of the Equestrian universe? Did the governments of those planets and the governments of the other countries besides Equestria just welcome these inter-universal travelers with open arms without any objection? No racism towards particular species?

The ending only implied that things worked out, but the time gap leaves a lot of unanswered questions whose answers are not implied by the ending. Such as how long before the mass migration got into full swing? Which races were bigoted towards each other, if there were any? How long before the racism stopped or was at least lowered to near imperceptible?

Like the Nostalgia Critic would say "EXPLAIN STORY! EXPLAIN!!!"

>star-system-destroying weapons
>extraordinarily advanced technology escaping the limits of the square-cube law
>easy interdimensional travel
>humanity has existed for millennia, constantly growing more advanced

>"We all gotta work together with the furries, guys!"

i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0401/94/1432645944586.png

6207763 Dear god, I think you just might, with the right pokes and prods here and there, make a base for somthing along the lines of the LoHaV, Displaced, ect. Am I wording it right? What I am saying is that so many am stories can branch off of this.....

Hmng unng uug! I came from reading this story... :twilightblush:

It went by far too quickly and I was frankly disappointed that it turned out to be another iteration of "advanced humans find ponies." It feels like the cover art is just a bait and switch.

Overall it feels like an entirely incomplete idea.

bep

6210344
Ah. I'm not a mathematician.

bep

6211645
With the gate dropping, it should be able to work.

wlam #49 · Jul 16th, 2015 · · 2 ·

I really can't say I liked this a lot. You're both really, really heavy-handed about your "moral message" (one of the cardinal sins of science fiction) as well as a poster child for the cliché that scifi writers have no sense of scale whatsoever. Taken together, the result is just silly. An entire planet vaporized! The tragedy! And almost a full single mid-sized 20th century Earth city's worth of people dead... which is apparently a major population center for a space-faring civilization, considering that there are "billions"of humans on "millions of planets." That makes, what, a thousand people per planet or so? That's barely even a large village.

I mean, come on. The story is set in a future so many trillions and trillions of years away that the stars have burned out and entropy has the universe winding down like a broken clock, and what do we get? One ridiculously oversized loudspeaker with legs and Stereotypical US Navy Colonel No. Umpteen thousand, so standard it's like you copied his dialogue out of a cheap Tom Clancy paperback?

All in all this really looks like you just threw together a bunch of random scifi setpieces, added ponies, and expected a good story to come from that all by itself. Predictably enough, it didn't. Take it as a lesson in paying more attention to substance over putting in stuff just for appearances.

Cliche story and cliche ending. The idea was great, though.

Really broke it for me when you had the pickpocket kid with the cliche "my relative is DYING, that's why I did a morally wrong thing!"

I'd look forward to a rewrite!

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