• Member Since 4th Jul, 2012
  • offline last seen Oct 30th, 2014

Spectre_Crystaleye


A ghost upon the moors, silent and absolute in its purpose.

T

They call them vagabonds. Rogues. Criminals, corrupted to their very core. They are perceived to be poison in peaceful society and rightly cast out. Scarce are these dark cases in the golden light of Equestria's civilized culture. However, not all ponies born with gifts of malice in their souls have the desire to use them for evil ends. These rare few who are condemned to exile simply for fear that they might one day break and embrace their grim talents, are given a choice by a princess wrought with compassion.

Forever apart from society at large, they live a secret, dangerous and disciplined life defending the country that doubted their hearts. Armed with forbidden technology and the love of their monarchs, they thrive with the freedom to embrace their true selves in service to an Equestria that will never know them.

Additional Art, Special Features, and Tech Designs can be found here:
http://spectre-crystaleye.deviantart.com

Chapters (5)
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Comments ( 44 )

I only read chapter one and skipped the prologue. :moustache::moustache::moustache:

This is FANTASTIC. Do continue!:pinkiehappy:

I expected a crappy fic. I expected something dreadful.

This was not what I expected.

Thank you.

1181714
TwinkiePinky- I assume that is a 3/5 Mustaches, hehe. I humbly implore you to sample the other parts, but I value your opinion none the less. Thank you.

1181748
Stereo_Sub- Thank you so much! I certainly plan to continue!

1182072
Deathtap- Thank you... Just... Thank you so much! That means a lot to me!

:twilightsmile:

1182366 :facehoof: I forgot to say 3 out of five my bad:twilightblush:

I still only read the first chapter, I read more when the stuff on EQD is read

kind of funny, I am writing a fic, (twenty chapters still have to be edited, FML) and a chapter has a few side characters in a similar situation. Ill read it when I am done writing mine, to compare and contrast.

amazing nice crisp detail have a pony:derpytongue2::pinkiehappy:

1184309
Dancewithknives- Ahh the daunting mountain of "Edit", hehe... I feel your pain. Ill have to give it a read when it launches!

1184976
AnIndingoCoyote- Thank you very much! I will have all the pony you will give, hehe!:twilightsmile::pinkiehappy:

To everyone who gave my project even a look, left comments, added upvotes, and faved... Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. My editor can attest that I have been terrified about the launch. I've been writing for over a decade but this is the very first piece I've ever made available to public eyes.

Once more, Thank you! Chapter 1.3 is already under the chisel and will be out soon!:raritywink:

1188336
enjoy, its going to be in ch 17 and it wont make any sense unless you read it all. so I hope you bought some preperation H for your eyes

1188374
Yea, seriously this guy has been like :fluttershysad: the whole time. But look man it's like I told ya, you post it up and you get at least 20% cooler :rainbowdetermined2:

This is amazing. Are you taking inspiration from Act of Valor?

There was only one thing that bugged me; you say the sniper team's weapon fires hypersonic bolts. Hypersonic is usually defined as speeds greater than mach 5. If this is the case, then it wouldn't take anything near 'a little more than a second' to go 472m. Roughly speaking, the speed of sound at sea level (assuming their atmos isn't WAY denser than ours) is ~330m/s, at low hypersonic speeds (mach 5), the bolt would go ~1650m. That's more than 3 times the distance to the target.

Sorry if this seems like nitpicking, it just stood out to me and wouldn't stop bugging me until I said something.
Keep up the good work. :)

1195334
I am taking inspiration for MANY works and my own knowledge interacting with the tactical community, but yes... Act of Valor certainly influenced this first scene.

Fair enough, hehe... I didn't know the exact line drawn between hypersonic and supersonic... I'm simply versed in practical longrange marksmanship and it was my best guess from a weapon with a muzzle velocity of 1,175m/sec as oopsed to the 806m/sec im used to on my 7.62mm platform... I realize now that i think about it that I screwed that up... it should be under half a second, not a second and a half. Brain went the wrong way on the time scale... :derpytongue2: I must have been eating a muffin at that moment of writing, lol... Thank you for pointing that out! Ill go in and correct it now.

Thank you for catching that... I am writing this fiction for guys like you who will appreciate such things spicing a well-rounded epic-length story of many facets!

Thank you for your compliment and your comment... I very much appreciate it!

Special forces ponies.
Nothing can ever be better.
Period.

Me gusta! Did you do the art yourself? Because that's awesome! :pinkiehappy:

1262836
Thank you very much for taking the time to read, Sierra Seven! And yes indeed, the cover-art and DA "special feature" art is all mine. Thanks for taking notice! :pinkiehappy::raritystarry::twilightsmile:

The level of descriptive details in this story is absolutely beautiful. This has the potential to be an absolutely fantastic story. I am eager to read the next two chapters, and then any future updates. dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Sweetie_happy.png

And so we meet our protagonists. This is shaping up to be quite the tale. All that potential I mentioned earlier? I'm watching it realized before my very eyes. Well played.

Well, I've come to the firm realization that this is incredibly well-written and criminally under-appreciated. This is shaping up to be an absolutely fantastic story, and I can't wait for the next update. dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/emoticons/misc_Lyra2.png

Very well written, with only a few typos. The dialouge is superb, as are the descriptive elements. 5/5 moustaches, can't wait for the next chapter.
Oh, and favorited too.

1290027>>1317531 Thank you very much!! I appreciate the feedback! and i will happily take those mustaches generously given!:pinkiehappy:

After reading the whole thing, all I know is this;
This story is awesome. :rainbowkiss::yay:
Seriously, the pacing, the action, the explination behind magic-based weapons, you've done an excellent job weaving this story together. The only bit I struggled with was the frames for Hurricane zero. Are they basically plane hulls built around their wings, or something else? They were the only things I had trouble imagining, as the rest was done brilliantly. Can't wait to read more. :twilightsmile:

1450633
Thank you very much! :twilightsmile:

As for the air-frames, you pretty much have it squared away right.. the Xiphos(light) frames are basically modified royal guard barding, while the Spatha(heavy) frames are almost vehicles in their own right, excepting that they use the pegasus's wings, sheathed in canvas wing extensions, to provide the lift and power for flight.

Thank you again for reading, more to come!:raritywink:

*Steel leans forward into the screen, every scene drawn perfectly in his mind. He seems unable to speak as the story carries him along.*

I finally got around to reading this. And it was quite good. Wonderful job, sir :twilightsmile:


My only issue is that I can't seem to connect with any of the characters. What I mean by that is I find myself asking "Who is that?" almost every time a name is mentioned. This is especially bothersome because usually once I'm given a name and a face (or, in this case, a description), it is etched in my mind, and I have no issues with recall. However, at this point, I'm convinced it's a problem on my end, so I wouldn't worry about it too much.


In any event, well done, sir. Happy writing. :twilightsmile:

Congrats on being reviewed by Seattle's Angels, Spec!

Very cool. I like the idea surrounding this so far cant wait to read more! :pinkiehappy:

I'm starting my read now. I have not forgotten.

It's good. I'll give you that. I'm not really in an analytical mood and I've got fic of my own to write. I'll come back for it later. If I haven't written anything up within the next 14 days, then remind me.

This is Kalash93 with your review.

Initial impressions were very strong. This story is criminally underappreciated.

Criticism sledgehammer inbound!

Your story drags on. It's sorta like a morbidly obese pregnant munchkin cat! Absurd smilies notwithstanding, it is never boring, and while it is to a very large degree used to good effect, the sheer volume is a mixed blessing. It gives you a lot to deal with. This is good for reader immersion; if you really want to be able to sink your teeth into a story, then that's how you do it. It's not boring, it just demands a certain level of investment and effort from the audience in order for it to be fully enjoyed. Be prepared to set aside at least a couple hours.That brings me to another point: this is just the opening salvo! In the legendary words of Proton Jon, "Move faster, Pokey. Faster! Faster! For the love of God, faster." The reader won't run away from you if you're keeping them entertained, which is what this story does quite well. It can get somewhat tiring to maintain high levels of attention for a long time. By keeping everything contained into longer chapters, you do a fair lot ot decrease reader fatigue, although the longer chapters are slightly problematic. The length is forgivable as it is all justified and handled nicely.

My second issue with your story is that I really don't get the feeling of danger for the protagonists. The relatively curb stomp nature of the battle does a good job at building up the Eclipse soldiers as really being the absolute best, and it's all quite enjoyable and badass. Still, Your guys have coilguns. The enemy has catapults. Yes, I know that you kill off a major character. However, it comes off as rotten luck more than anything else and feels contrived. It doesn't show that the enemy really is formidable, considering the sheer number of times that your other characters had lucky saves against surprise attacks. Reducing the number of lucky saves and making the enemy seem much more competent would certainly add suspense as well as not make the death feel cheap. It still had emotional impact, and immediately rammed in the idea that yes, it really is all as dangerous and difficult as it seems.

My third issue with your story is just how nebulous the plot is. It's fine for a story in its initial phases to keep all that stuff saved for later, but I think that we're owed a lot more than we've received because you've been going on for over twenty thousand words. Action prologues work best if you keep them short. Another thing is that some parts just feel contrived.For example, the enemy officer gets away just by blind luck. The villains don't seem to have any motivations other than just being evil because they can be. Who are they? Why are they here? What are they fighting for? What makes them so bad? This last one begs for an answer. Answers to these questions would certainly not be amiss, and would certainly increase both story depth and reader investment. Framing the explanations in dialogue could be used as a highly effective characterization device. At least you're not repeating the word "terrorist" time and again as if saying it enough will trigger our sleeper agent programming Duncan Idaho style.

You frequently hop around between protagonists and characters. You're trying to tell a grander narrative, and succeeding for the most part. I have mixed feelings about this This sort of approach is more suited to a medium with a visual dimension, like comics, films, serials, television, and so on. Having many characters is certainly doable in text form, but it requires a different method. It certainly makes us care about everypony, but it also discourages forming close bonds with any one character. The characters are done well, and the problem certainly does not lie in shoddy characterization. It's just that there are so many vying for attention that by the time you have one thing set up, you've jumped elsewhere.

Deserved praise inbound!

This is by far one of the best war stories on the site! It is definitely worth weathering the weight and swallowing the jargon. Equestrian special ops... I like the idea so much I that made a reference to Eclipse in my own story. It is inestimably better than the mountains of shit that comprise most war stories. I went and read more of those, and you know what, they actually make me raise my opinion of this story. This is how war stories with a core focus on action should be done. Your handing of special operations is fantastic. You know your stuff. If you continue, then know that I absolutely will follow your story. I want more!

The pacing is admittedly quite good but on the sluggish side of things. I love how you dedicated so much effort towards pacing and buildup. That is commendable, seeing as many fics and writers often stand up on the gas pedal and forget to relax. You contrast well between quiet and loud scenes. Most scenes last just the perfect amount of time, taking neither too long nor being too brief. The flow could be improved somewhat by jumping around less, but that's a personal taste nitpick.

Characterization is excellent in your story. Everybody in your story has an actual personality and life beyond their work. There's a lot of personality to absolutely every single character applied by a wonderful mixture of both direct and indirect characterization. Everypony just absolutely drips with individual flavour and flair. Their speech patterns, appearances, names, and everything else about them is seriously exceptionally well done. I could imagine all of them as being real people, something that I can seldom say about characters from any media, let alone fanfiction. You also leave in gaps for readers to draw their own conclusions and ideas about them. I really like it when an author does that. I can't find any complaints with characterization other than that you spend perhaps too much time on it. It didn't detract from the experience, mind you, it's just that you have a lot of time to develop characters and build your world. It's important to pace yourself on such things in order to keep the narrative strong all the way to the end. Focus on individuals could be tighter, but I'm being a grouch.

As a military nut, I was sucked right in. This is in many ways a niche piece, but as a niche piece, it rocks. I would wager that this would have fairly broad appeal, even to readers outside of the modern war genre. I really liked how much detail you used for weapons and tactics and equipment and doctrine of the Eclipse operatives. Given that what I know is mostly eastern bloc, it was quite a nice educational experience. Your descriptions of how the bolt lances function did twice go to insanely excessive lengths which even I found pointless, although that is vastly preferential to the depressingly ubiquitous explanations of weapons essentially being magical death hoses. Even so, firearms and military enthusiasts are going to appreciate the details and effort put into everything. I like knowing how things work and why they do. It's refreshing to read stories from guys who actually know things, do their research, put in effort, and try their best to tell the best tale they can.

This story is definitely memorable. I enjoyed this story immensely. Your command of tone, mood, and atmosphere are commendable. Your writing style suits the piece very well. On the whole, it's an extremely solid story. It's not great, but it's certainly good. I will remember this story for quite a while and I am certainly going to read it at least one more time. If I were looking for a serious war drama, then this wold be my pick. Your mechanics are very good. I can't remember any specific mistakes or flaws, but I'm sure that there might be some. The level of polish is high. It was a very enjoyable read that never really jarred or committed any major sins.

Reader, if you're uncertain as to whether or not I recommend this story and think that you should check it out, then allow me rephrase that: YES! It's a really really good story and I love it. Unless you have a terminal aversion to all things badass, adventurous, and well written, then yes, you really should read it.


Your story is extremely good. I want more and I will continue to read it. You win a solid 9/10 flutteryays; average is 5/10.
:yay::yay::yay::yay::yay::yay::yay::yay::yay:

2488787
Well, I can say that about 90% of your negative feedback is addressed simply by the fact that the scope of this project was hidden... This is just the intro, the tiny little half of the first act. When all is said and done, 22k words is going to seem so trivial.

I'm in a rather fragile mood as of late, and this didn't help... I honestly didn't want yet another review taring into my controversial writing style, but I appreciate that you took the time to do it anyways.

-Cheers

2489433

Got it. I see that my original review was rather ham-fisted and came off much more harshly than I intended or feel about the story. I've revised it.

It's a shame that this hasn't been updated in so long.

2951774
I dunno if blogs still tag stories... I didn't see an option this time. But if you don't see it...

Thank you.

O_O This story was updated?! :yay:

Good God. It's been a bit over a year. I'd truly thought you'd dropped off the face of the Earth :L
Although I can't say much, I've had my only story on Hiatus for just as long, if not longer x_x

Wow.
Kalash93 wasn't kidding when he said you were under-appreciated. 5/5. Like, Favorite, etc.
My only gripe is the pacing. It's fine to have such detailed, meticulous work with your words in the stealth sections. It's calm but tense. It makes you think. You pay attention to every detail because every detail matters. Blink and you could die. This makes me feel like I'm right there next to them. But then shit goes down.
That's when the gun porn should stop. Omit needless words. Contact Left! Bang. Kill confirmed. Get to cover! Thud. Reload. Okay, now take stock of the situation... *details*
If shit's going down, if there's a controlled chaos that mirrors panic, convince me. Make my heart race. Make me think faster than normal. Make my palms shake. If you can elicit a physiological response from your reader, you're doing a damn good job.
But I'm going to keep reading, because you know what you're doing. You have a good story to tell, and I'm ready to hear it... I think...

3410004

Blogs don't tag stories anymore. Knighty removed the feature because it was vestigial and nonfunctional.

Nice to see a new chapter! Keep it up. I had to reread the entire thing to understand this chapter though.

Kinda disappointed that the Mane Six aren't these special forces, but at the same time I love how this feels like an actual black op. I especially like the use of a sniper/spotter team rather than the usual lone sniper.

Are you ever going to come back to this story? Or this site, for that matter?

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