• Story: Falling Stars (New Chapter 14!)



    [Crossover] [Grimdark] [Adventure] [Sci-Fi]  Heeey! More Battletech.  Enjoy!

    Author: Rokas
    Description:
    It is the year 3070, and Mankind is once again at war. The battlefields of the future are dominated by fierce, robotic war machines known as BattleMechs, and under their auspice empires have risen and fell. Now with the worlds of the Inner Sphere once again facing the drums of war, two mercenary units have set off on their respective missions, their only tie a common ride upon the back of a JumpShip.

    Yet when a cosmic accident causes a misjump, they find themselves thrown into a world that they cannot fathom: a world where magic is a force of nature, where mythical creatures live and thrive, and colorful ponies live protected under the aegis of their monarchs. New choices lie ahead, decisions must be made, and the inner character of Humankind will be put to the test when the question is asked: to conquer, or protect?
    Falling Stars (New Part 14!)

    Falling Stars (Alternate)

    Additional Tags: Long War Technology Courage INSANITY

    67 comments:

    1. goes straight to number 1 read.

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    2. @Discord
      Your spending too much time focusing on getting first and not enough on corrupting innocent ponies.

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    3. Sweet, it's up.

      Sorry for not having a custom picture, but I can't draw worth beans.

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    4. More battletech? Is this the same as Legacy of Thessalonica?

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    5. I somehow think the two ideas won't mix. I hope you prove me wrong :)

      And godammit must you insist on stealing my title? (give or take a few letters)Now I'll have to think of something else

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    6. Yeah, I only speed-read it, but it doesn't seem to work very well. The Thessalonica Legacy did this crossover better. I may come back and read it more in depth later, but it takes WAY too long to get moving, is way more violent than it needs to be once it DOES get moving, and there seemed to be a lot of mistakes in the grammar and language department.

      My suggestion? Skip this one. Go read "The Thessalonica Legacy."

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    7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    8. Okay, so basically it's Thessalonica Legacy... WITHOUT all of the interesting character moments and the thrill of two races coming into first contact with each other and then being forced to work together towards a common goal... instead replaced by a "humans are evil" angle and a grimdark tag slapped on, resulting in Celestia going down like a pussy in the first fight rather than reigning a solar flare down on the attackers like she should.

      I'm gonna agree with my roommate Dusty up there. Guys, go read Thessalonica Legacy instead.

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    9. Dread Chitin crossed over Battletech too. Well it used Battletech tech, not the characters or setting.

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    10. This fix felt like a slap to the face. I completely skipped the parts with the humans for the first two chapters because I don't care about whatever this crossover is with. I only care about the characters I know and the interactions between the two races. Then Celestial got oinked out and I stopped reading. The most powerful person in Equestrian got killed by common bandits and you expect me to believe the author doesn't intend to just have all these humans steamroller the rest of the pony population? It was an insult. The massive amount of detail for all the waepons the mercenary uses tells me that the author loves whatever this is crossed over with, wish the same could be said for the MLP side. I too recommended everyone just ignore this or give it one star.

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    11. read the comments, still going to read the story

      anyways I already read the thessilonica story

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    12. I thought the pony side of the story was well written - there was some nice "magic physics", the pony civilization's actions in preparation for their visitors were well done (the Royal sister's actions, the military's, and the civilians evacuating Manehattan), and the main six were properly characterized. It even incorporated Luna's archaic speech patterns.

      But the humans turned out to be a bunch of greedy gung-ho idiots with great big guns. Or at least their leadership is and there's been insufficient dissent among the ranks to add much depth beyond that. I guess I might read the next part to see if there's any complexity in the other humans' reaction to their unprovoked assault.

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    13. More Battletech? *sigh*

      After blitzing my way through Thessalonica Legacy I feel a need a cooldown period before I attempt this one.

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    14. @Specter Von Baren

      Far be it from me to DEFEND this story of all things... after all, it isn't very good, but if you don't read the parts with the humans then you have very little context for why they MIGHT be able to take down Celestia. Also, I THINK that Celestia lived through it given how the guards said towards the end that they were trying to "get Celestia to safety."

      ...But now that I've gotten that out of the way, the rest of what you said is completely and totally right.

      (In Depth Review Below)

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    15. This story is an insult to my intelligence, my person as a brony, and to me as a human being.

      The story did a very bad job with introducing the crossover elements. Now I usually try my best to let a story stand on its own merits, but given how excellent the BattleTech crossover that came before it, Thessalonica Legacy, was, there's no way to look at it WITHOUT comparing the two. First, look at Thessalonica legacy. It spent a whole chapter intricately and interestingly explaining the situation of BattleTech, and it managed to make it interesting. It introduced me to characters and made me care about them and made them sympathetic, as well as fleshed out their world. It also made the distinction that there were both good AND bad human beings and this would end up coming into play.

      This story? It tosses you right in without a second thought and expects you to sink or swim. Little to no effort is spent trying to introduce you to characters or make them likable. And the scenes with them are so static and bland that a) they felt like they plodded, and b) they were completely non-memorable. I hardly remember any of it, and I only read this about an hour ago. Compare to Thessalonica where there were whole CHAPTERS devoted to fleshing out the characters, and yet I remember everything that went down, MONTHS after I read it.

      Also, this author goes out of his way to make all humans EVIL! The humans a need resources! "Oh hey! A planet! Let's STEAL FUCKING EVERYTHING AND KILL THE INHABITANTS IF THEY RESIST!!!" They don't even attempt diplomacy. They don't stop to consider anything else. They just want to drop down, loot, enslave and ravish our mares, and run. In Thessilonica, their approach was careful and diplomatic with caution and care, and only got ugly later in the story when a group of less pleasant people decided to throw a wrench in things, and it was careful to make the distinction that not all humans are TEH EVILZ.


      (Continued Below because Blogger is silly and can't handle long comments)

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    16. @Dusty the Royal Janitor


      (Continued from above)

      And then there's the ponies. The ponies see that there is some sort of thing in the sky and their first reaction is "PANIC! PANIC! PANIC! PANIC!" This doesn't seem much like the ponies we've come to know, or at least not Celestia, Luna, and the Mane 6. Now granted, their whole military angle came in handy, but only because the story went off in a very stupid manner.

      Also, if I may add, one thing I remember from Thessilonica was that the human race had NOT made contact with any intelligent species. You'd THINK that when the humans touched down they'd be a little, you know, SURPRISED that there's intelligent life here. Maybe even try and be nice to it? Give the whole "we come in peace" spiel? maybe attempt to make allies? This just makes the whole "attack without mercy" thing even stupider.

      And then there's Celestia. Now I'm pretty sure you established Celestia as not omnipotent, but you then described her as "Near Godlike" towards the end. I suppose NEAR godlike isn't omnipotent, but it DOES suggest that she shouldn't be able to be taken out by a puny human laser, or weakened by bullets or start slowing down after a few attacks. It DOES, however, suggest that she should be able to call down concentrated beams of heat and radiation from the sun, vaporize all her attackers in one go, and do so without harming any of her followers. This is something I would think she should do after these guys gunned down several of her beloved subjects. But no, she just gets zapped by a laser and she's down for the count. And these common bandits are now free to loot and pillage Manehattan and Twilight is sitting there crying "WE NEED A MIRACLE."

      All in all, this story just screws up way too much. It screws up in logic. It screws up the ponies by portraying them as weak, jittery losers, and it screws up human beings in general by portraying them all as greedy murderous fucks. This story, I'm sorry to say, is just a screw up. It is no good. It's like the 1999 remake of the Haunting to the original 1963 The Haunting that was Thessalonica Legacy. (btw, if you haven't seen the 1963 The Haunting, do so.) Given how it lame and helpless portrays the ponies and how it looks like its setting the ponies up for a slaughter, I actually have a hard time believing this was written by a Brony.

      This is one to avoid, folks. Let it stand forever as an excellent example of "How not to do It."

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    17. @Specter Von Baren

      Well, if the story's intent is to have a lengthy war between the two sides, it would require that Celestia be unable to simply bring down the full fury of the Sun on these yahoos. So I can understand her not decisively winning the first fight in the interests of plot. But yeah, having her decisively lose it isn't any good either.

      Here's hoping that her burnt wings are the deific equivalent of a flesh wound and we'll see some more serious resistance now that the Royal Sisters know that diplomacy is off the table.

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    18. *glances up at all the negative reviews that are being slapped onto this fic*

      ... Seriously guys, seriously? I'm starting to wonder if anyone actually took a moment to read this fic before jumping on the bandwagon someone who skimmed it set up.

      I actually took a bit of time to read the parts with the humans in it carefully, and guess what? They're not invading. One of the crew members of the ships fleet's gone rogue and is attempting to stake his claim on this new land now that the space police (or whatever) aren't around to tell him what he can and can't do. Actually, the guy that's attacking Manehatten with his troops tried to obtain himself the position of the recon group, but was denied the chance because the group that just landed is more qualified.

      What's more, the actual official group has made a point to mention that guy was a pirate at some point or another. We're not looking at a humans are evil story, it's a story where a small group broke off from the whole in order to further their own cause. The last chapter actually shows one of the mercenaries saddling up to take care of this rogue agent.

      In the end, this is looking more like a case of first contact gone array when the actions of an individual reflects badly upon the whole.

      I guess I'm just trying to say that while it's not the best story around, you guys are seriously jumping the gun with all this talk about how it's portraying humanity as evil incarnate.

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    19. @Violet Droplet

      Upon re-reading the human sections of the story I can see that now. I can also see why I overlooked it, however. I'm unfamiliar with the Battletech universe so I had no idea that there were multiple independent commands involved here. It wasn't clear to me that O'Connell was acting on his own initiative or that McKenna and Marquette were of equal authority.

      I'm not sure how to make this more noticeable, but some rewriting of the earlier human sections might make the dynamic clearer. Or perhaps include some more mention in O'Connell's section about how he's concerned that the other group might try to stop him.

      I still stand by my impression of O'Connell as a gung-ho idiot, however. He's taking a gigantic risk with little obvious reward (ponies don't have electricity, how could have any significant amount of germanium, titanium, or aluminium?) and it really should have backfired on him more spectacularly already considering he fired on a Sun goddess.

      Ah, I see that a fifth chapter has been added. I'll take a look at that now.

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    20. Okay, the fifth chapter does improve things quite a bit, it makes the "good guy" humans obvious. It's very unfortunate that the story got posted to EqD just slightly before that chapter got added, I suspect it would have alleviated the extreme negative reaction.

      Given that McKenna's group is "special ops" whereas O'Connell's group is heavy assault, I expect they're still going to be underdogs in a straight fight and the ponies will actually be able to make a difference in the outcome of the story. I'll continue checking in on this one.

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    21. I'm rather liking what I read so far. It actually makes sense, because I read all of it instead of just skipping what I didn't like.

      O'Connell's a monster and I wanna use his escape pod for target practice. No love, no tolerance, just shred him open with UACs.

      And I think a Deimos would look just wonderful in Luna's colours.

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    22. >> The equations that made hyperspace travel had been discovered by accident by the scientists whose names graced the result of their work, yet they had been mocked and ignored by a 21st Century scientific establishment too in love with Relativity to consider anything beyond it. Over a century would pass before anyone would even look at their work seriously, and ever since historians and scientists alike have wondered just how much more would the famous duo have uncovered had they been allowed to keep working on their revolutionary theory.

      This is so often a sign of bad sci- near that -fi.

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    23. @Slotos

      And yet I think it's actually Battletech canon.

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    24. Very well.

      After taking Violet Droplet's tongue lashing (I suppose I may deserve that), I went back and reread the first four chapters...
      I will redact ONE of my paragraphs of criticism. that being the third large paragraph: the one about the author portraying all humans as evil.

      I'll admit, I was wrong. not ALL humans are portrayed as evil. However, I have to tell you, it's probably easy to fall into thinking that, mostly because the first two paragraphs of my original criticism still stand, and in fact, stand stronger than ever.
      I repeat. NO effort is spent trying to introduce us to these characters or the universe from which they come. We know that they're in some sort of war that involves mechs and that they have ships that can jump long distances in an instant, smaller ships to go down planetside, and that this war seems to have been going on a while. But that's it. No real effort is spent explaining it.

      Furthermore, the characters remain bland and uninteresting with little in the way of defining characteristics. So it was little surprise that when one of the weird little blocks of info I saw on the characters finally turned over to a group of characters with any major or distinctive personality that I might think this is just representative of the humans as a whole, especially when there is little in the way of acknowledgement of them by the good humans, and they don't acknowledge the good humans themselves. It's presented very poorly and confusingly.

      Beyond that, my points all still stand here. That's at least three quarters of my argument still standing.

      I think, speaking constructively, this story could do with a major rewrite of the human elements. It should introduce a smaller cast at a slower pace and it should spend time expanding upon the universe from which the humans come. It should also introduce the evil humans, O'Connel and his gang, a earlier and it may want to have him interact with his superiors and comrades, the good humans, long before he decides to go planetside. That would do well to flesh out character. You could have them get in an argument or have them flash back to a major battle or something. Do something exciting to draw the crowd in.

      It may also be good to have them speculate a bit about whether or not downright attack is the best method. After all, this IS first contact they're making. Have them ponder what the best course of action is. Even if they still decide to pillage and plunder at least they'll have THOUGHT about it. It's still a dumb decision but at least it implies thought rather than watching them go around saying "Those horses are fucking flying!" nine times.

      The ponies could also be improved by more thought on the end of the Princesses and the Elements of Harmony. It wouldn't make them seem so jittery and panicky if they, say, instead of scrambling all units at the first sign someone may land, sent a small, diplomatic unit of only a few soldiers, the mane 6, and Celestia. That would not only be more in character for their culture (peaceful and diplomatic), but it would make more sense how they might be defeated so quickly and it would make them come across as far less jittery and cowardly.

      Finally, Celestia should be more of a badass. She should at least take out a good three quarters if not more of the enemy forces before a lucky blow STUNS her rather than incinerating her wings. Either that or establish the fact that she is not as "near godlike" as you claimed.

      The story that we have has a lot of issues. It's not too horribly awful, but it's got way too many issues right now for me to redact all of my criticism. That said, you do seem to have (at least with the ponies) an understanding of good story structure and aside from a few typos a fair use of grammar. But beyond that, so many plot developments and actions are unbelievable, most character actions and reactions are dubious, and many things aren't explained well.

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    25. @Dusty the Royal Janitor

      That's all I wanted! I just felt horrible for the author since he was getting nothing but abuse for that one, rather touchy, preconceived notion when people should've been focusing on the other issues to help him improve.

      Like I said, it's not perfect, and I have a bit of a perfectionist gene of my own that prevents me from enjoying some stories, so I can understand exactly where you're coming from on the rest of your arguments, so don't think I meant any disrespect.

      Funny thing really, the idea that Celestia went down that easily was one of the big things that caused me to only give this story a four star rating... Also yes, I'm incredibly generous ^^;;

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    26. I'm also going to have to admit, that the fifth chapter improves things. Now that we've finally managed to get in some bit o character interaction, the characters still seem to finally be fleshing out, but it's very little very late. Also, the only one that's really all that interesting is Ivan, who I actually managed to laugh at. He's like Heavy from Team Fortress 2...

      But really, why couldn't we have gotten long, developing scenes like this earlier? It really REALLY would have helped. A scene before they all decided to jump and all got stuck in the wrong universe? Even if you spent a whole chapter devoted to developing all the humans and getting to know them and having them all interact, that would have been preferable to just throwing us in at the jump point and letting us sink or swim.

      Anyway, it looks like some of the problems are slowly fixing themselves with time, but I still would think some revision on the first four chapters might be a good idea.

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    27. @Violet Droplet

      Yes, well, that was my bad. It was a little muddied but I probably should have been paying more attention from scene jump to scene jump. Still, I hope now it might be understandable where a lot of my criticism was coming from.

      Actually, I'm a little mad at myself for that first review. I usually try to make sure I always give ample suggestion for improvement and I really didn't at first. I just pointed out what was wrong, which I guess came across as a little meaner than I like. I'm a really harsh critic but I usually try not to be mean about it.

      But like I said, the fifth chapter really improves on a lot of points. It's actually something of a shame that this didn't get posted later in the day or tomorrow or something. My second review would still stand but most of the really destructive ones would likely not be here.

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    28. >Then Celestial got oinked out and I stopped reading. The most powerful person in Equestrian got killed by common bandits.


      Why the heck are people saying Celestia went down 'easily'?

      The good merc company has 8 mechs. The bad company has more.

      She tried to fight 9+ mechs, along with their dropship. Things that are designed to fight other 30-90 ton death machines, and a ship designed to defend itself from 30-90 ton death machines.

      And spent her time attacking all of them, rather than a single target

      The story has some problems, but that as one? Doesn't make sense.

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    29. @shadefox

      Perhaps she held back out of concern for collateral damage? The fight's happening in the heart of Manehattan, after all. That would make her defeatable without reducing her power too much.

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    30. So, finished chapter 5.

      Sci- part here was pure pain. I was literally writhing through "scientific" explanations. Higher energy universe (really?), magic as opposition to technology (if magic existed, it would be studied by science and incorporated into technology, by definition) etc, etc…

      -fi… That Pinkie. I forgive you everything for that Pinkie! Take all my Internets and please continue!

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    31. @shadefox

      Well, look at it this way...

      - They have 9+ Mechs and a drop ship.

      - Celestia has a fucking STAR. A star that SHE can control. A star that relies on HER to rise and set.


      The story can't seem to decide whether or not Celestia is just a very powerful sorceress or a demigod, and given the show and the general fan idea of Celestia, people are going to gravitate towards what they know better: the demigod option. As such, we can't help but be confused as to why Celestia doesn't trap all the attackers in the sun or blast them with a concentrated beam of heat and radiation from the star. Ergo, we wonder why she went down so easily.

      If the author wants to give the idea that Celestia is not as powerful as our preconceived notions, that's fine, but he needs to do a better job of it. As it is, he never really does a decent job of establishing just how strong Celestia is, merely mentioning a once or twice that she "isn't omnipotent" which could mean a lot of things. Furthermore, Twilight calls her "near godlike" at least once, so that adds to the confusion.

      We're just wondering why Celestia decided to go all "Super Sonic" and have it NOT WORK rather than incinerate the attackers with a flick of her horn. And given the situation, I think we're entitled to complain about this.

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    32. @shadefox

      If we are to look at this in say, naval terms. Think of each one of the mercs mechs being like a modern day pirate ship (I mean the real pirates we have nowadays), Celestia would be a battleship.

      Celestia isn't all powerful or anything, but she shouldn't having so much trouble with all those mechs from the outset. Having the biggest heavy hitter on one side be taken down so easily basically means that everyone else is going to be completely infective. If Celestia is supposed to go down, the most powerful of the side of the ponies, then it needs to be with something more than the equivalent of basic troops. It's like if I had it so Celestia got beaten by ten marines or a mere fifteen zerglings, or five protoss zealots when it should take at least a siege tank or even better a full blast of a Yamato Cannon! This was the first fight between these two forces and the very best couldn't even kill the leader who was right in front of her the whole time!

      I was hoping that this pointless band of mercenaries was actually going to be wipped out easily and that the true problem of the story was that all the ponies would see all the other humans that had come as being of the same ilk as them which would lead to immediate aggression and war over a misunderstanding.

      In my earlier post (Typed on a phone that thought the word 'punked' was me mispelling 'oinked') I said that I didn't read the human parts because I don't care about the battletech world's characters, but that was only because when I skimmed their parts, I was completely uninterested in them. I would have been uninterested even if this wasn't a crossover because everything from the world they come from to the character in the fic, are really generic and boring. They came off as just goombas that the author introduced just to get the ball going.

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    33. i liked it. it starts slow, yes, but so do novels. if you're going to write something of a decent length, you usually work slower than most fanfics i've read. i actually think this works wonders as i'm not a fan of BattleTech or MechWarrior or those thing and this helps me get into it better than Thessalonica did, which was more 'hey giant robot that doesn't do anything.'

      i liked Legacy well enough but i think this is doing it better.

      as to the 'humans are evil' thing, so far there are the 'greedy' humans and the 'noble' humans, which is a dualism that works when compared to the usually saccharine ponies. the fact that Celestia was able to even touch any amount of 30th Century technology is, in my opinion, an honor to her. and if she dropped a solar flare into the middle of Manehatten, i don't think Manehatten would exist after that. Pyrrhic victory, not what she was going for.

      i think people are leaping at the first contact, where 'HumansAreBastards' is played fairly straight. but the author didn't limit humanity to that one trope. i, for one, am glad i read it and would suggest it to someone wanting something more adventure-y or 'war story' than Legacy, which was fairly character-driven. this is 'World War II' to Legacy's 'Vietnam War.' different approaches, different goals. also, this is what i expected from a giant robot/pony crossover.

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    34. She didn't incinerate all the attackers with a wave of her hoof because the story would end right there.

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    35. @Minalkra

      That assumes she can't control the solar flare beyond it just being a "solar flare." Again, a question of "just how powerful is Celestia?" which is very ill defined in this story.
      Personally, I would think it would be a small matter to just drop a pillar of light down on the enemies and either control it well enough or put up a shielding spell at the same time and tell her forces to look away so they aren't blinded and let everybody get out of there with little more than a heat rash.

      Victory. Drinks all around.

      @Nutjob

      And thus the story is building on top of one gigantic plothole. You see what the issue is here? The entire story is currently resting on Celestia grabbing hold of the Idiot ball.

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    36. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    37. @Minalkra


      "the fact that Celestia was able to even touch any amount of 30th Century technology is, in my opinion, an honor to her."

      Where the heck is the idea that magic is greatly inferior to technology, coming from? Twilight's charm spell should, based on what it did in the show, be able to completely neutralize every single one of these mercenaries due to them all being too busy murdering each other over a rock.

      Twilight was able to lift an entire Ursa Minor a huge distance in order to return it to its cave, so she, or better yet, Celestia, could simply levitate all those mechs and make them fly off into the distance to then fall and crush in on themselves like cheap toys.

      Discord was able to, on numerous times, bend the very laws of nature to his whim to make cotton candy clouds, exploding milk, drinkable glass, flying earth ponies, reverse digestion, ect. ect.

      Twilight and Celestia have demonstrated the ability to warp in quick succession on Twilight's part and over a huge distance on Celestia's They could warp around all those mechs so that they miss them with their weapons.

      Luna was able to bring toy spiders to life and summon clouds, lightning, and wind at any time she chose.

      Twilight and Rarity have displayed the ability to transform objects, changing their very molecular make up, to whatever they wanted.

      Twilight could just use a freaking mustache spell on the mercenaries so they get so confused that they don't notice the huge masses of earth about to crush them.

      After all that. After everything you've seen on the show, you're going to try and tell me that Celestia should feel good she even managed to do almost jack squat to glorified wind up toys?! Are you kidding me?!

      Authors are always trying to hold back the magic, make it so it isn't limitless, so it isn't so powerful so those with technology stand a chance. When did the idea that technology is BETTER than magic become the status quo?

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    38. As the author, I feel I should step in and say a word or two. (Spoilers follow)

      A big issue for some seems to be the way I've handled Celestia and the balance of magic vs. technology. I will admit that from the start I had no intention of making magic the inherently superior force, despite the fact the show is subtitled "Friendship is Magic." This was done because of the crossover nature with a science fiction universe, as without a match of capability there would be no conflict, and therefore no drama. Either science would be superior and there would be no point of resistance and the ponies would have no impact on the story, or magic would be too powerful and the story's villains would be rendered moot in one stroke. This does not make for good storytelling.

      It has been contended that I have gone too far in the opposite direction, to which I would say it would seem so if you are predisposed to considering magic as a superior force, perhaps a fan of high-magic settings. My aim with providing a background of technobabble (or magicbabble in some spots) was to lay a groundwork of understanding that what is referred to as 'magic' or 'technology/science' are merely two physical systems that, in this particular crossover, coexist in Equestria. This would make them equal in force, but only if properly applied in ways that play to their strengths.

      The battle between Celestia and O'Connell's forces was intended to illustrate this. Celestia did profound damage against a complete battalion - 36 fusion-powered 'mechs - before her defenses were overwhelmed. And the fact that she lost wasn't because she was a weakling, but rather that she didn't fight the enemy in a way that worked. In this story I have envisioned science as brute force, with magic as elegance; she tried fighting brute force with brute force.

      The charge that I gave her an idiot ball to hold does bear some weight, because I did. If you're a Troper then you know that tropes are neither good nor bad, so let me explain: She was facing a force of enemies she had no understanding of, who surprised her at every turn with new capabilities and an astounding control of energy that allowed them to pour on a lot of force. As we saw in "The Return of Harmony Pt I", she is not infallible, nor is she unflappable. The fact tha Nightmare Moon was able to hold her but not stop the Mane 6 shows that she is not quite the all-powerful goddess the fandom assumes. And I do say assumes since I do not recall her being called a god/goddess anywhere in any extant episode. She is not omniscient, she can be out thought, she can be outmaneuvered, and that means she can also make mistakes. Individuals make mistakes all the time, and though Celestia has lived a long time and learned from many mistakes, there is room for more when she is put up against a new foe with capabilities she doesn't know about and doesn't understand. The fact is her defeat, while painful, was not a total loss, for she did exact a toll on the enemy and as a result put them off balance to the point where insurgent militia have a chance at keeping them at bay, bottled up in one city rather than having them rampage all around, unchecked. Furthermore, if she could wipe out the enemy in one stroke, again there wouldn't be a story. Or at least, not the story I want to tell.

      (continued)

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    39. There has been leveled a charge of making the ponies cowards, to which I take offense. The character Stonewall and the charge of the pegasi should show that courage is not lacking amongst ponies in this story. However, those are guards, members of a military or paramilitary force: they have been trained and have experience in having their lives threatened. The mane six cast reacted differently because they are NOT trained nor experienced in such things. Yes, they have risked their lives before, but you'll note those were against understood threats they knew how to either fight, avoid, or mitigate. An alien force with unimaginable weapons just casually slaughtering others would naturally terrify them, especially considering the nature of the weapons used: quick, deadly, and gruesome. The fear of the unknown working with the suddenness of death dealt not by impersonal forces such as avalanches or beasts, but by an intelligent, cruel, and unfathomably hostile thinking entity would naturally give pause to anyone, especially ponies who have not seen such things before.

      I understand that these choices I have made are not going to be accepted by all. I have made them with the intent of writing a story that explores themes I find interesting, such as war, duty, loss, facing the unknown, and a loss of innocence, while simultaneously including two franchises/universes I love. I understand that is not everyone's cup of tea, especially considering the nature of MLP:FIM, so I am sorry if this is not the story you want to see. It is, however, the story I want to write, and I ask that commentators keep the bile and vitriol down to a low flow so that you do not scare away those who do want to see such a story. And I know some people do want to see this story, because they have told me so with comments here and on fanfiction.net.

      TLDR version: If you like stories where magic reigns supreme and science is a plaything of godlike beings playing Xanatos Speed Chess with mere mortals as pawns, you're encouraged to write one yourself. If you want a story of a struggle between uniquely different but equal forces, try reading this one.

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    40. And as the reviewer/reader, I feel I need to again give a rebuttal.

      I understand that having a story end prematurely because a hero is too strong and wipes out the baddies too quickly is not good storytelling. That said, in fanfiction, you're meant to work with established canon and build upon it to make the story. Instead, you are tossing canon out the window. If you could find a manner with which to defeat or incapacitate Celestia that would make sense with what we know about her in canon, then that would be proof of how good you are as a writer. Instead, you ask us to change our view of canon, which is fine to an extent. Canon is slightly bendy. But you ask us to break it by making Celestia a weakling.

      You claim that technology and magic could be equals. Possibly. I'm not going to argue against this. It's entirely possible Reed Richards could come up with something to neutralize Celestia or something if he was so inclined. However, the Battletech technology does not seem suited to take her out. For this, I direct you to Spector von Baron's reply to Minikara. Even the simplest spells should have been able to take these chumps out. All 36 of them. Easy.

      And honestly, the idiot ball doesn't belong here. I don't care whether or not she "knows" how to take these enemies on. She's not stupid. She knows that these are sentient beings and all sentient beings tend to work in a similar manner. There was no reason for her to hold this idiot ball. Yes, tropes are tools, but it's not hard to figure out after the first few strikes "this isn't working, better change tactics," or "these creatures seem to be greedy. They should be very susceptible to the 'want-it-need-it spell" or anything. She didn't fight them in the right way because she was an idiot as you portrayed her, not just because she was unknowledgeable.

      As for her not necessarily being so powerful? Well, I have to assume she's more powerful than Twilight, and Twilight could probably take them on herself, but as for not being a god? Bull. I'm going to parrot something again. Celestia controls the freaking SUN. DO you understand the implications of that? It implies a level of control over the four fundamental interactions, e.g. the four forces of reality: Electromagnetism, Gravity, Strong interaction, and Weak interaction. True she is not omniscient, but controlling a sun would involve power that would at least be godlike enough to handle these chumps. Unless you're actually arguing that Celestia is an idiot in canon, then you have no foothold here (and even then, how did she become headmistress of a school?).

      I'm not saying that science and magic can't be equal. I write a story where science actually beats magic a lot of the time. But this is too weak a science you're throwing at too great a magic.

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    41. @Rokas

      The problem is that you haven't written a story where the forces are equal.

      It's like how the weapons changed from Halo to Halo 2. In the first one the human weapons were infinitely superior but then in the second they dumbed them down so there could be more balance but it just made the alien weapons infinitely superior.

      You exchanged magic being the dominating force for technology being the dominating force. The mercenaries should have been working around all the spells I mentioned, when they get gripped by telekinesis, maybe they activate thrusters in the mechs that set them down safely. When the charm spell is used, some run off but the stronger minded ones fight it and overcome the spell. When Celestia warps around, the leader analysis her movements and anticipates where she's about to warp to and fires there so he hits.

      After this fight, maybe the mercenaries have a tech guy on them and they work with him to try and find a way to combat the magic. Maybe they make a sort of magic emp bomb that disrupts magic, not completely, but enough that only the most powerful of unicorns can fight when it's used and even then, the effects don't last forever or for even a long time.

      Balance isn't that hard to do if you think about it a little.

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    42. @Specter Von Baren

      I commend this comment, Mr. Von Baren. This is the perfect example of what a guy can do to even the field.

      Actually, the way one can picture this going down is similar to a video game boss battle where the one that wins is the protagonist you're playing as. If you want to write a convincing scene against a formidable opponent, think of it in terms like that. Figure out all of the attacks and strategies the boss might have and then figure out how you, the player, might fight and defeat him/her.

      This sort of thinking is the result. Sometimes it's good to step back and take a look at what your story would be like in another medium. It can really help fix issues or move things along.

      Anyways, yeah. This sort of thing isn't too hard to pull off if you think about it for a little while, but the way it was approached in the story makes Celestia look like a weakling and an idiot.

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    43. @Dusty the Royal Janitor

      U mad bro? How about you quite raging and wasting time on long winded comments and just stop reading it.

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    44. To Nicko: Is it wrong to try to help an author improve their writing?

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    45. @Baren (my browser doesn't like the reply window): i feel it's quite the opposite, actually. i think this fandom discounts both human ability to the point of speciesim (self hatred in this case) and makes magic the panacea of Equestria, a deus ex machina to both explain bad plot devices and as a fix-all. it's used so in the show, yes, but that's because it's a show for children.

      really, i disagree with Dusty and your assertions that this author made Celestia underpowered in relation to her show-self. we don't know how powerful she is. she raises the sun but is that an active thing that uses power or is it her nudging it into a well-worn path and letting it go? we don't know. i think you both began reading this fic with preconceived notions about what Celestia and magic could do based on your own headcanon and, when this fic didn't match up to those headcanons, you started to lay into the author.

      mechanically, there are a few misused words and the first chapter could use a bit of a clean up. plotwise, i see nothing wrong with it. period. if i read something where Celestia can lash an enemy with a solar flare, even with an extremely controlled one, fine. i'll accept that. there's nothing in the show that says she can but there's nothing that says she can't either. by the same token, if this author chooses to look at the show and put that level of power usage out of her grasp, ok. i'll accept that too, it helps with the story he's chosen to write.

      what i'm trying to say is that we don't know what she can or cannot do with any certainty. she raises the sun and can dispell an enchantment, those are the only thing the show states/shows. does that mean she has the power of the sun at her beck-and-call? never stated. does that mean she can reform the world if it was ever completely destroyed? again never stated. these assertions are headcanons, popular though they may be, and as such should be left at the door when reading something. i.e. no headcanon is better than any other headcanon.

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    47. @NickoBellic

      Basically what Specter von Baren said.

      No, I'm not mad. I do my best not to get mad at fanfiction. You see, I am a reviewer. I review writing in an attempt to help others improve, and occasionally it takes a fair amount of words to get a point across.

      When I submit a particularly scathing review, it's only because the work deserves it. The author needs a reality check to get his work on track, lest he fall into a bed of plotholes, poor character, inconsistency, and deus ex machina.

      If I continue to "pester" an author, or if I ever really do seem to start to get mad, it's likely only because the author has started making up excuses for himself that don't hold up. Sometimes, you gotta knock a little tough love into people.

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    48. @Minalkra

      Alright, that's actually a pretty decent argument. However, it's still really inconsistent with what we know about the universe in general. Let's look at this from another angle then, discounting the sun.

      Celestia is Twilight's teacher. We know this. Celestia is also the headmistress of a school for gifted unicorns. We know this too. We can deduce from simple logic, then, that she probably knows most if not all the spells Twilight has learned, knows far more spells in general than Twilight or probably any other unicorn, and is probably better at them than any other unicorn after a thousand years of practice.

      Furthermore, we know her able to resist great energy discharges, or at the very least magical ones, as seen in episode 23 when she was completely unaffected by Twilight's "I AM PHOENIX" moment, and even brought her down from that.

      Over a thousand years she has ruled a kingdom. This means that logically she has dealt with a lot of different situations and people. Thus, while she might not have dealt with war, the presence of royal guards deems that logically she has dealt with hostility in the past.

      So what can we deduce logically from this? Well, she probably has several powerful offensive and defensive spells in her arsenal due to dealing with hostility. She is logically intelligent and strategic, otherwise it seems likely the kingdom would have fallen apart in the past 1000 years.

      So LOGICALLY, she should be able to figure out a direct or roundabout strategy to handle these mechs. Pretty much anything that Specter vo Baren said likely would have worked. I especially think the "Want it Need it" spell would be effective.

      What I'm saying is that, yes. we don't know everything about her and certain things can be interpreted in different ways, but this story has broken even some of the most basic logical arguments. I'm not saying that Celestia can't be beaten. What I'm saying is that Celestia has been beaten in a way that makes no sense and seems completely illogical for her character.

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    50. @Dusty the Royal Janitor

      Exactly what I was going to say. My only addition is that this isn't just about Celestia being believable, it's also about, what does it mean if Celestia loses like this?

      If the most knowledgeable and powerful pony in Equestria can be taken down by just these mechs then what are the rest of the ponies supposed to do from here on out?

      Obviously any physical engagement with basic arms is pointless, so that leaves only magic, which was just shown to not even be good enough when Celestia tried what had to be her most powerful spells.

      So that means that these mercenaries are just going to roll over everyone. There are four possible scenarios with this, either this fic turns into a tragedy, the other group of humans comes in and plays the savior role, or the ponies inexplicably start to make mechs of their own to combat the enemy, or magic suddenly becomes effective later even though we just saw it not be so.

      If it's the first option, then I can't really argue against the fic but I also won't read it just to see all the characters and this world get put down. If it's the second option then we essentially have a mary-su in the form of an entire group of people because our ponies can't do anything for themselves. If it's the last option then the author's want to have the story deal with the conflict of magic V.S. technology won't happen. Or, magic suddenly becomes effective even after this chapter showed it not to be and we'll all have to wonder why it suddenly got that way.

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    51. @Dusty and Baren

      you're right and wrong. it's been at least a few hundred years since pony kind has had to face war. plate being the height of military technology and an in-fic technology level of early 1900's, that means pony kind hasn't needed to be aggressive in a long time. even long in Celestia's reckoning. suddenly, senseless violence is done. she's not thinking clearly.

      logically, she's the most powerful THING in Equestria. she is a nuclear weapon in a world of plate mail. she has never had to really be thoughtful of her attacks. she is powerful and if she can't force it through presence she can wipe it out through attacks. now, she's up against something that isn't necessarily as powerful as she is one-on-one, but she is up against a lot of very powerful things that can take an attack that would have left her ancient enemies dead. she's probably not used to having to fight against so many things that have such ability either.

      she tried flashy spells that were meant to intimidate and force her enemy to cower. these didn't work and when she realized she needed something more, she was under attack by a power she needed to defend against which leached off energy from her in addition to the energy she wasted with her intimidation attacks. she didn't fail because she was weak she failed because she weakened herself through ineffective technique.

      next time she fights these guys, she will be more knowledgeable and able. she will probably wipe the floor with them, barring underhanded tactics (which i hope to see).

      @baren specifically

      I don't see magic here as ineffective and i really don't see Celestia as having used her 'most powerful spells' (though maybe that earthquake thing was it and i missed that part, possible). it just has to be used differently. lets say, for instance, that lightning spells are the height of military spellcasting. they won't work, these mechs are grounded. but causing mechanical failure vis-a-vis transmutation is not only an option, these mechs are very vulnerable to that attack. magic isn't just effective, it's key to winning the war.

      it's how Celestia was using magic that rendered it apparently ineffective. she was using magic that way because she never had to use it any other way and she's not thinking clearly after witnessing a massacre. but ponies in mechs, can't say i'd say no to that idea.

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    52. I have been following this fic on fanfiction.net for a while. I'm a BT fan and after reading "The Dread Chitin" I scoured the Interwebs for any other BT/MLP crossovers. I read and enjoyed Legacy, and I am on the fence with this.

      I will agree with some of the detractors that the human backstory/universe could use fleshing out. I'm a BT fan, so I know a lance in 4 units, a company 3 lances, a battalion 3 companies, but from reading the comments here, many readers don't. It was also easy for me to understand that different mercenary units would share a jumpship if heading the same direction. I didn't bat an eye at there being two completely different units under different command structures running around autonomously. Again, this is something the non-BT readers didn't get. I could ramble on and on, but I think you get the point. I've had more understanding of the humans, so I have had more enjoyment reading about them. Try not to assume a base level of understanding in your audience.

      What has kept me on the fence with this fic, is more of the black/white contrast between the two human factions. Again, my BT background gave me some insight into O'Connell's Periphery Bandit King heelturn, but I like my "Big Bads" to have a little more motivation than just base greed. I did like that he admonishes himself about his brash actions later, but he still comes off as one dimensional. A little trepidation from at least a few members of his unit might have helped me, but his unit is comprised of mostly the lowest of the low, and to paraphrase O'Connell "The ones who would shy from it, will still go along with the group."

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    53. (Applies flame-retardent salve) Here is where I part with a lot of the detractors, I found the conflict with Celestia to be quite engaging and believable. I honestly found it the best part of the fic, except for maybe the armorer chasing Applejack around (found that really funny for some reason).

      Celestia had two big handicaps in this fight, one is shared with the humans, no knowledge of the capabilities of the enemy, the other is a fear of collateral damage. For those who want her to call down a solar flare that incinerates the humans and leaves her ponies untouched, I don't know what to say really. I could see her calling down the hellfire and leveling the city, leaving a smoldering crater and herself the only things left, but she isn't going to kill her little ponies like that. If she can selectively nuke the city with no collateral damage, what is the point of the story? Now, underestimating her opponents is the biggest problem she had, and it is because I am a BT guy that I don't fall into the trap of underestimating them myself. I am not so sure of the decision to include a highly organized military on the Equestrian side. Celestia starts off with a flashy attack hurling a huge volume of rubble at the assembled mechs. She then seems genuinely surprised they don't buckle and break right there. Now if there is a well disciplined military on Equestria, than she shouldn't be so surprised they manage to hold ranks and advance. This is my biggest problem with the whole fight. She starts to take more fire straining her shields (btw I like the idea of defensive enchantments powered by magic stored in gems, the difference between "deep earth" gems and the magical gems found near the surface of Equestria is a focal point of my own in progress, first fanfic, but I digress). Here she adapts, flashy doesn't work, projectile ruble isn't doing it, so she plans to bury them all. It backfires on her, she doesn't consider that the giant, 20-100 TON, metal things could fly (by fly, I mean jump short distances). For her limited knowledge of the humans, taking them all out in one go seems a perfectly fine choice, it limits collateral damage and is more efficient than picking them off one by one. She starts thinking of another new plan, but she misjudges again, she doesn't consider their dropship to be a threat, thinking it transport and nothing more. But again, the BT guy in me, knows that Overlord class dropships are A) spheroid and B) have their considerable armament located around the "top" of the ship when landed to fend off conventional or aerospace units. She flies higher, and draws roughly double the fire she was taking before. Shields fail, gets hit, gets saved, yada yada.

      grrr ... low word count here, part 3 in a sec.

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    54. This all seems perfectly reasonable to me. For those who disagree with her spell selection, I'll ask you, when you read what she was casting, did you immediately stop and think "NO, she should cast the 'want-it-need-it" spell to confuse them!" If it wasn't the first thing to jump into your head it probably wasn't the first thing to jump into hers. I'll go out on a limb and guess after reading the whole of the fight you went back and considered what would be the best way to win the fight, hindsight is twenty-twenty and all that. I'll take it as a given that ponies think like humans in a lot of ways, so I'll say that it is natural to respond to a situation with the same type of action, fight fire with fire. In this case, I would find it very weird for Celestia to respond to being shot in the face by a small army of giant, armored battlemechs by casting a charm spell to make them love the nearest piece of ruble. Would it be effective? Maybe, if human minds can be affected by magic made with pony brains in mind (pun not intended). But as a reader I would have felt jilted if something so "metagame-y" had happened.

      I am coming dangerously close to a ramble, so I'll stop for now. I love a spirited debate, so feel free to offer counter-criticism. I would be more than happy to clarify or expand on any of my arguments.

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    55. You know, I've read through the story, and I'm really not feeling any of the negative points expressed in certain reviews here. I'm really surprised the story has such a low rating given that it's actually quite entertaining, and considering that worse stories have much higher ratings. It's almost as if a large number of people rate based on what other people say rather than their own opinions. But no, that would be ridiculous! :\/

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    56. I used to be a happy man,

      then I hit the end of the story

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    57. the thesselonica legacy did the crossover better but this is the only other good battletech/MLP crossover their is. other then TTL and Falling stars most of the BattleTech/MLP crosses have NO IDEA about battletech and make the MLP part of the story feel forced.

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    58. @SonOfTheNet
      so yeah not a legendary but a good 4 or 5 stars

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    59. the thesselonica legacy did the crossover better but this is the only other good battletech/MLP crossover their is. other then TTL and Falling stars most of the BattleTech/MLP crosses have NO IDEA about battletech and make the MLP part of the story feel forced.

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    60. I enjoyed the hell out of this. While I've been out of the BT universe for a while (Dear god why can they not get good writers) I enjoyed TTL significantly but I feel the two are very different stories. I'm not sure if I would ever feel comfortable giving a comparison.

      This is a longer story and does take longer to hit its stride but when it did I couldn't stop reading. While there are areas that can be improved overall it's a solid story and actually shows humanity in multiple ways rather than just "Monster" and "Saint." It's fairly refreshing in that regard.

      Also read this for Ivan if nothing else. Chapter 11 blew me away.

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    61. @SonOfTheNet

      TTL was a story about culture and technology.
      FS is a story about war and "humanity" (not limited to humans).
      Comparing them just because they crossover the same universe is pointless. The themes are what matter. You wouldn't compare, for instance, a shipping fic and a horror fic just because they are both ponyfics, right?

      Also there is another decent Battletech (sorta) crossover. It uses Battletech technology and takes place mostly in a BT base, but not actualy withing the BT universe. It's a 4 way crossover with 2 original worlds, FiM and BT.
      It's called The Dread Chitin. You can search for it on this site, Fanfiction.net, and FimFiction.

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    62. I had left this story alone after reading the first chapter, but seeing that it was still updating, I came back and read it.

      I'm glad that I did.

      MLP and BattleTech are two properties that don't lend themselves readily to a cross-over (despite the convenient plot devices of miss-jumps and failed teleports) because of their differing tones and subject matter. A clash will inevitably result in the writing, where-in one set of themes overtakes the other. Being a BT fan before an MLP fan, I am pleased with the darker themes of BattleTech providing the story material.

      Oh, and drawing in the griffons is inspired.

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    63. @Rokas
      ... to the Author. In response to his rebuttal from the vitriolic reviewers:

      I get what is your goal and the themes you want to explore in the fic. They are very well explained (in the reply), are very deep and interesting, and all things said it sound the kind of story I will dig immediately.

      The problem is that you did it in a very, very bad way. Like wanting to bake a 3 floors wedding cake and burning the yeast.

      Tropes are neither bad or good, just as you said, but the way you tried to join the two franchises, your explanations and the fight were... in the messy category.

      The story is bland, your explanations lack interest or whimsy (and yes, even the hardest Sci-Fi essay needs whimsy to get the reader attention and make it memorable) sounding more like a bored teacher and Celestia...

      Yes, there are errors and errors and the way Celestia just reacted is more like a foal than a millenniums old, god like (according to your own fic) level warrior who had faced equal powerful individual and what should be considered an near omnipotent god.

      Yes, if she had defeated them in the first go, you wouldn't have story. Instead you decided to sacrifice the characterization, plot and willing suspension of disbelief from 98% of all readers and diminish the seriousness, drama and depth of your story for a quick plot coupon.

      ... yay?

      P.D: Also, just because it's started to get better in chapter 5, doesn't' make the previous chapters okay, the same way that just after hour 30 FFXIII becomes an acceptable game, make it a good purchase.

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    64. Speaking as a BattleTech fan, and an MLP fan, I'd just like to lend my support to this fic. That Celestia survived against a full battalion of 'mechs, a totally unknown and absurdly powerful enemy, is nothing short of extraordinary. In fact, given her performance in the season finale I'd say they author actually wanked her quite a bit. I know, it's a hard pill to swallow, but in terms of canon "power levels" . . . BattleTech wins against MLP hands down, and with the addition of the almight Outside Context Problem it was inevitable that Celestia and Luna would get their butts handed to them.

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