Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Ponyfic Roundup 17

It's Wednesday, it's eight o'clock... it's Crackerjack! Ponyfic Roundup! As usual, there are five stories under consideration this week. I haven't come across anything quite as outstanding as last week's Old Friends, but that would have been difficult. There are still some very worthwhile fics here to keep you reading. Since I don't need any more ados, then, let's get ourselves underway...

Pick of the fics

A Gift for 'Shy by Blazewing
Rainbow Dash, Fluttershy, Mane Six, Spike and Scootaloo
Slice of Life; 8K words; Dec 2012; Everyone
Fluttershy's birthday is fast approaching, but Rainbow Dash can't think what to get her. She goes to ask her friends for advice. Yes, it's a well-worn setup, but Blazewing implements it very well indeed. As well as some very nice FlutterDash friendshipping (much of it without 'Shy actually being present) there's a lovely, heart-warming Dash/Scoots scene. The author made a few changes recently, which I think improve the story. As such it rates 8.5/10.

Other stories

The Incredibly Dense Mind of Rainbow Dash by Chengar Qordath
Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Cloud Kicker and Other
Romance/Comedy; 27K words; Jul 2013; Teen
This is where the Winningverse began, way back in June 2012. (The more recent date given here is that of the updated and refined version of the story; both versions together make that 27K-word count.) It's broad, it's bawdy and it's actually a good deal of fun. Rainbow Dash can't work out why Pinkie wants to spend time with her, while Cloud Kicker and Blossomforth have their own plans. The thing that stops this being truly great is that Dash is so dense at times that it becomes almost ridiculous. 7.5/10

Love Your Difference by BronyDad
Mane Six and Zecora
Comedy/Adventure; 48K words; Mar 2014; Everyone
This story was written for a non-brony audience, which explains its biggest fault: the enormous amount of exposition on stuff that happened in the show itself. It's still worth sticking with, though, because under all that waffle is a really pretty decent story. Various of the Mane Six are magically affected and start acting like other ponies. An old idea, but quite well done. Characterisation is very good, and a later subplot with Fluttershy is well done. Might have managed a 7.5 or even an 8 without all that exposition. 6.5/10

A Rock and a Hard Place by JapaneseTeeth
Maud Pie, Fluttershy, Pinkie Pie and Twilight
Comedy/Slice of Life; 4K words; Apr 2014; Everyone
Maud, as we all know, loves rocks. So it's only natural that she'd want to go one step further and actually become a rock for a while. Just to see what it's like. How? By asking Fluttershy to find a cockatrice to do the honours, of course. This is a very silly story, but it all somehow works. The first half is absolute genius, though it dips (very) slightly in interest later on. 8/10

Shiver by Sexy-senpai (author known as "2D-Kun" at review time)
Thunderlane and OCs
Tragedy; 7K words; May 2014; Teen
Set in a dystopian nearish future, this first-person story tells us what became of Thunderlane. Turns out he's living in a barren wilderness, going on mysterious trips every so often. But why? This fic is written in flowery language that more irritated than enthralled me, and it also suffers from some tense mixing. The story has been very well received on FimFiction, but it didn't really manage to get under my skin. Nice portrayal of Rumble, though. 5.5/10

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