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Discussing the many faces of Equestria as a faction.

2022.01.20 13:17 TimeLordHatKid123 Discussing the many faces of Equestria as a faction.

Im bored, I just woke up, here's a discussion post, my little citizens.

Equestria is the primary and, perhaps, "main character" of the mod. It's the nation we all know, the sun-moon monarchy of the show, the place where much of our beloved Generation 4 takes place, and is a faction that has a solid amount of variety and is given ample respect as a faction in spite of how easy it is to overshadow it in favor of the crazy custom stuff you see going on in the game.
To this day, one of my favorite factions is Grover II's Griffonian Empire, and that entire storyline and how it could affect the growing Grover VI is kind of awesome. Gytha is a wonderful idea with mediocre execution unless you go non-Harmonist, Wingbardy is a pet favorite of mine with it's Monarchy path, Kasa Free State is inspiring as hell, several breakaway states in the Civil War are a gem to see, and you can see how easy it is to be overwhelmed by the custom content right?
So this is a post going over what I think of every major branch of Equestria that you can acquire in the focus tree PRE-ZEBRICA! This is Pre-Zebrica, so if something is updated or something new is added, let me know ASAP!

This is perhaps the best thing the nation can have, barring Twilight taking the throne, which itself happened in the show and was a natural and healthy conclusion to the Sisters' thousands of years of being the great leaders of Equestria, beating back threat after threat and all that. I'll go more into the following point in the Republic and Constitutional Monarchy categories, but part of what I dont like about the Republic path is that there's an underlying sentiment of surrender. That is, the sisters have been saving Equestria from horrible things for THOUSANDS of years, all of which are historically documented and proven, and the one time things go wrong barring the first Nightmare Moon incident just one millennium ago, two times if you allow the civil war to happen, the ponies are eerily quick to jump ship, as if great threats never happened in Equestria before. The only difference between the two is that now we have an active war over it.
So why did I go on that diatribe? Because quite simply, the sisters are wonderful rulers, both as individuals (Celestia OR Luna as opposed to them both ruling together) and as a Diarchy, and they remind us of where the mod came from. With all the crazy bloodshed, brutality, warfare, chaos and anarchy, this nation reminds us that at the end of the day, even a war torn world can have hope for a better future, and Equestria symbolizes that in all it's glory, ESPECIALLY the Monarchy/Diarchy and Republic paths. Speaking of which...

The Republic of Equestria is...actually kind of nice. I would gladly vote Mayor Mare or Fancy Pants personally, and I like seeing the common people at large take the reigns of this massive landscape thats been ruled by God-like beings for countless years. Now, as I stated before, my problems come in with the idea of "oh the Princesses are failures who couldnt help us in our time of need, they suck!", which is a BIT of an exaggeration on my part but thats what it feels like to me. It feels like a level of ungratefulness that irks me to no end, something even Twilight (and probably some of her friends), who would probably be in full support of the republic, would chastise the ponies for.
Did those thousands of years mean nothing? Did stopping Sombra mean nothing to the empire or the rest of Equus? Did stopping the other threats that came to pass mean nothing? Did stopping Chrysalis many many MANY years before the start of the show mean nothing?
So here's what I think, I THINK the intention was to say "Oh we love the princesses, truly! Its just...things are so horrible now, and they advanced so fast, that we think its time for the princesses to retire at last. The world has finally outpaced them, and we wish to formally request they abdicate the throne to the people. We can take care of ourselves now, we promise we'll be okay, princesses.", which is a really sweet and wholesome train of thought honestly. Truth be told, the ponies might not need the princesses anymore if they can objectively handle themselves well enough, and its like passing the torch from mentor to pupil or parent to child, like a bird leaving it's nest.
This way, you can also have them retire gracefully and with dignity. I may still prefer the former, but the Republic is SO good on its own.

Oh boy...this one, we have to talk about the Solar and Lunar Empires now, huh? Alright, let's get it out of the way, shall we? I love them both, honestly. The best part about these two extremes is that they give you the option of avoiding a traditional evil monstrous tyrant, and instead allow you to reign in their moral compasses and stabilize themselves so that, while their rule will NEVER be as good and benevolent as it once was, it can still be functional and fair in spite of the new iron hoof they live under. Basically, its the difference between a harsh but fair state and a blatantly tyrannical state thats constantly broiling for an open revolt one day.
In spite of fandom biases that led to the Solar Empire being under-developed and to making them also seem more unabashedly evil with no equivalence in a few spots (if not for Empress Protector, I would have thrown chairs), I think these are two wonderful factions with fascinating ideas. Sure, you CAN go typical evil monarch...or you can turn them into interesting and morally gray beings that truly do have the best interests of the land at heart, they just kinda...let go of themselves.
Either way, these are wonderful and unique ways of playing Equestria, and are a fascinating deep dive into how an Equestria that was successfully taken over by the inner extremes of the monarchs would work.

While not strictly EQUESTRIA, these are two badass resistance groups that only show up during a Pax Chrysalia timeline, where she successfully overruns Equestria and turns the land into a living hellscape of love draining cruelty and despair.
Now, I won't say any more on the matter, but those of you who have played these routes know EXACTLY the kind of glory they hold in terms of the narrative, they are some of the best and most captivating storylines you'll ever play, especially the former. As a side note, the ELF has the most broken and overpowered bullshit in the entire game, because you literally CAN NOT WIN without them, behold! The power of plot armor the Elements of Harmony!! ;D

In order of my favorite Equestria states, I have to put them in the following order...
1: Diarchy Equestria, Empress Protector Daybreaker, and Equestria (Post-Liberation Front)
2: Equestrian Republic (Mayor Mare or Fancy Pants) and Forgiving Lunar Empire
3: Equestrian Republic (Constitutional Monarchy in general)
4: Zecora's Resistance Equestria (Mainly because it appeals the least to me personally, and really isn't strictly Equestria anymore, if that makes sense?)
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