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Serendipity: An Equestrian Tale

January 12th, 2014, 12:36 pm

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Author's Comments:

Reply Ultimate Yoshi, January 12th, 2014, 12:39 pm

Read Serendipity: An Equestrian Tale here: http://talesofserendipity.smackjeeves.com/

I actually started to run low on room in this review, so if anybody wants me to elaborate further on anything, feel free to ask in the comments.


Next up: Kirby's Dream Adventure - Adoption

Reply Advertisement, December 18th, 2017, 4:06 pm

User's Comments:

Reply --Floob--, January 12th, 2014, 12:47 pm

@Ultimate Yoshi:

The "giant pink furry thing" is actually another OC pony, Fluffle Puff the "Fluffy Pony."

I actually didn't just make that up

Reply Sapar, January 12th, 2014, 1:01 pm

What!? I mean, WHAT!?

Reply Advertisement, January 12th, 2014, 1:30 pm

Did you really have expectations?

Its really stupid how this Serendipity has fans, people only seem to be drawn to it because it has ponies in it.

Reply TouhouShake, January 12th, 2014, 1:35 pm

@Advertisement: Yougotmethere

Reply Advertisement, January 12th, 2014, 1:40 pm

@TouhouShake:

?

Reply G.B.A, January 12th, 2014, 2:00 pm

FINALLY! THE TRUTH HAS BEEN REVEALED TO EVERYONE!

Reply Marcus The Hedgehog, January 12th, 2014, 2:12 pm

Well, that ended just as expected.

Reply --Floob--, January 12th, 2014, 2:17 pm

Who wants to bet on how bad his reaction to this review is

Reply GabrielsThoughts, January 12th, 2014, 3:55 pm

If he didn't like Serendipity, Ultimate Yoshi will scream his head off when he discovers the sequel to Serendipty...

The Elements of Peace Colab comic.
http://elementsofpeace.smackjeeves.com/chapters/0/un-chaptered/

In fact, I was expecting serendipity to segue into it much sooner than it already has.

Reply GabrielsThoughts, January 12th, 2014, 4:01 pm

@Advertisement:

I'll have you know I'm not attracted to it for the ponies. I happen to like it because LugZ reviewed one of my comics, and was nice to me...

Plus, at the time anyway, there used to be news posts and fun tangental things posted with the updates. Like a story about a spanish maiden who used her powers as a government clerk to purchase the rights to the sun uncontested. She plans on charging the United States for its use. Which is when the clouds started to gather and the arctic vortex began. It's all very complicated.

Reply Jarkes, January 12th, 2014, 4:24 pm

Actually, Lugbzurg only recently split the comic into separate chapters, so maybe somewhere along the way the order got messed up.

And personally, I find the comic to be "so bad it's good" material. And I should note that even most of the comic's fans thought the Fluffle Puff thing was ridiculous. I should also note that even Lugbzurg himself has come to think that the comic's not so great, but he's determined to finish it.

EDIT: The fans also used to get into some very interesting conversations. We still do, so that's probably why some of us still read it.

Reply Jarkes, January 12th, 2014, 4:33 pm

@Advertisement: Most of the fans (myself being one of them) find it to be a "so bad it's good" type of affair. The ridiculousness of the comic makes it enjoyable.

Reply Advertisement, January 12th, 2014, 4:45 pm

If he thinks its terrible but refuses to quit then why doesn't he try to improve? Literally from comic 1 to the recent update there is no noticeable change in quality in terms of visuals or writing, in fact I think the latter just keeps going downhill the longer it goes!

Reply Jarkes, January 12th, 2014, 5:11 pm

@Advertisement: That's a very good question. Perhaps he'll explain things once he decides to comment on this (in fact, I'm surprised he hasn't already).

Reply Jarkes, January 12th, 2014, 5:11 pm

By the way, Ulti, are you ever going to review 20 Times Kirby?

Reply Fiora Aroura, January 12th, 2014, 5:36 pm

It's like how the Nostalgia Critic describes "The Adventures of Sonic the hedgehog"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvTn8Qp8FAU

XD

Reply Ultimate Yoshi, January 12th, 2014, 5:47 pm

@Jarkes: If Gigi ever asks me to.

Reply Neon-J, January 12th, 2014, 6:10 pm

@Jarkes: Man, I recently read 20TK for the first time, would be interesting to see UY's reactions to it. ;o

Guess we're just waiting for Gigi.

Reply GabrielsThoughts, January 12th, 2014, 6:38 pm

@Fiora Aroura:

And yet, Coconuts the monkey is still the best Sonic character ever...

You need to watch AOSTH before SATAM then watch SONIC UNDERGROUND. Obviously, the quality of villains vary from series to series. It's like watching 'Speed Grapher' before 'Eden of the East' and following up with 'Darker than Black.' ( in terms of quality that is.)

Reply greenpowerstar, January 12th, 2014, 7:36 pm

@Jarkes: I just keep reading it because I like to snark at bad media. Although, I'm kind of disappointed by this comic and its older sibling Sonic Future. I really like Lugbzurg and I used to really enjoy his work. But, he doesn't seem to learn from his mistakes in his stories (when they are pointed out or not.) I actually think it's kind of funny that at least half of the people who critique him just state, "YOU GOT PEOPLE BANNED A LONG TIME AGO EVEN THOUGH THEY WERE BEING IGNORANT OVERALL ANYWAY AND COULD FIND MULTIPLE WAYS TO COME BACK BUT I STILL HATE YOU ANYWAY SO YOUR COMIC SUCKS" instead of mention his webcomic's actual problems (they aren't all like this though).

...you know, that might be the reason he ignores the actual criticisms because he thinks it's just haters and trolls instead of constructive comments.

Reply Fiora Aroura, January 12th, 2014, 8:01 pm

@GabrielsThoughts: "Coconuts......hey Tails...nuts." -Sonic shorts
XD

I watched all 3 as a kid :) The Sonic Underground intro theme is so catchy XD

Reply GabrielsThoughts, January 12th, 2014, 8:01 pm

@greenpowerstar:

I have to disagree, not all criticism is haters and trolls. However, not all trolls and haters offer actual criticism. You need someone who can genuinely keep the work itself separate from the person who made it.

For instance, Judging a person as a "Faget" because they didn't like or agree with being attacked by someone else that you did like does not automatically make the survivor of an assault a victor or a victim. Once somebody has achieved victory, no matter how shot lived it was, that victory doesn't go away becasue someone in the audience says "NOOOOOO! It's Not FAIR." And, a genuine judge of character can see past superficial things beyond similarity, costumes, and disappointment.

A poor review could actually be doing you a favor as well. It keeps all but the worst of trolls away. And, those interested in finding out the truth for themselves get to discover a new world of diversity.

Reply GabrielsThoughts, January 12th, 2014, 8:19 pm

@Fiora Aroura:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pr5vUb-xozY

I prefer sonic for hire...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPSlSPtFrgY

Reply Fiora Aroura, January 12th, 2014, 8:43 pm

@GabrielsThoughts: The mighty PENguinator XDDDD

Ugh, that show is rancid X( But Link did make me laugh.

"No way girlfriend, the only crime here is that dress. Makeover!"

Reply Lugbzurg, January 12th, 2014, 10:13 pm

Yep... Looking at this retrospective, the series had become pretty nonsensical. (And apparently, the order of some of the pages got mixed up somehow.) I can't wait to move onto something else. This is what happens when you try to write a webcomic very shortly after bandwagoning into a fandom that you're no longer a part of. I'd start something new, but this still has readers, and I'd like to finish the story at the very least.

I want to start something original next, and it should easily blow this... thing out of the water. I was very excited when I first started it, but now, I'm not entirely fond, nor proud of it... even though I'm still writing it. (I feel the need to finish things, ok!?)

So... let's see... Avoid random, nonsensical crossovers at all costs. Gotchya. (But I like art shifts...) You're mostly summarizing what's happened in the comic so far. Anything else you'd like to discuss in detail about how badly I botched this thing? Like the plotholes?

This was my second attempt at writing drama. If you thought this was bad, you should see my first attempt: http://seriouslybadcomics.smackjeeves.com/chapters/53235/the-legacy-of-dark-sonic/

Reply greenpowerstar, January 12th, 2014, 11:56 pm

@GabrielsThoughts: You misinterpreted my comment. What I was saying was that most of Lugbzurg's "critics" don't critique his work, they just whine over some stupid argument that's been dead for a few years now. Therefore, criticisms are harder to see unless he either knows the person or they show no earlier bias.

Reply Ultimate Yoshi, January 19th, 2014, 11:07 am

@Lugbzurg: Huh, did you edit this comment? Cause I swear that when I saw this, there wasn't a line asking me for more detail.

Either way, better late than never.



First off, one of the biggest flaws of the plot is how it starts. We see Lugbzurg fighting with Eon, but we get no history for either of them, nor do we get to really see them fighting. Lugbzurg and Eon appear to have some sort of history but it's never elaborated on. In this opening scene, we don't even get to see why Lugbzurg was defeated by Eon, when presumably they have been rivals that have been either the same strength or Lubgzurg had been able to defeat him. There's no real explanation for why and how Lugbzurg suddenly lost.

Like I mentioned in the review, another issue is why Eon ends up in Equestria. This is literally never explained. His purpose for sending Lugbzurg to a different world was so that Lugbzurg would be tortured with the knowledge that he's failed his homeworld, and so that Eon could wreak havoc as much as he wanted. So why, pray tell, does Eon immediately end up in the exact same place that he just sent his rival to? He could have easily taken over Mobius (presumably), but nope, he goes to the one place where his rival who is constantly against him is. There is absolutely no logic there.


With characters like Nova Reach, I can see what you were going with, but they also failed pretty badly. Nova Reach doesn't have a character outside of "I am obsessed with aliens". Furthermore, her differently colored muzzle and her hair scheme is incredibly offputting and makes her look more abnormal than the "abnormal" one, Lugbzurg. Speaking of which, it's never really explained how Nova KNEW Lugbzurg wasn't a real pony. She tackles him from afar, looks at him and basically says "this looks exactly like an Earth Pony", and then suddenly knows he is not from Equestria.

Characters like Derpy Hooves and Nova Reach also seem incredibly forced and not at all relevant to the plot. Especially since they don't even end up going to Canterlot, they seem completely pointless and they also make the earlier chapters drag on really long. They just kind of randomly show up in the early chapters and get abandoned in the long run, which is an issue.


In regards to the villains, Bloodlust also joins Nova Reach in looking incredibly ridiculous and abnormal, even for a villainous spellcaster character. I get that she's supposed to be some sort of witch, but her design is just too over-the-top and is screaming "evil". I get that in the show, there have been characters like Nightmare Moon and King Sombra who are quite obviously evil from first glance, but they're also special characters. Bloodlust is meant to be a totally normal pony at first who just kinda spiraled into this evil past. I might not have an issue with her design if it wasn't the same in the flashback, but she looks identical in the flashback to the present-day Bloodlust, which is just ridiculous.

Speaking of that flashback, that's the source of another problem in the plot. Why exactly is giving ponies magic a bad thing? The pony in the flashback is clearly seen drinking the horn-giving potion of her own volition, so why exactly does she run off crying? This just really needed to be elaborated on. Was there extreme prejudice 1000 years ago? That would make this fine. Was potion-making in general a horrible crime? That would also make this fine, as long as an explanation was given for why it was a crime. Were Celestia and Luna just total idiots? Yes, but if this was also stated this would make things work better. With the amount of explanation given in the flashback, aka not really any at all, her story just makes no sense and every single character in that looks like a complete and total moron.


The whole Fluffle Puff thing is by far the worst thing in the comic, and that's saying something. It's overly long, 150% unnecessary, it's filled to the brim with terrible-looking OC ponies, and in general, just the inclusion of this Fluffle Puff character is just nonsensical. Why is this random pink mass of fur with a pony head randomly in Ponyville? I realize now that she's some sort of Tumblr blog, but those don't necessarily need an origin or explanation or anything of the like. For a comic that's like this, though, there needs to be SOME reason for this, but none is ever given.

When Lugbzurg starts bringing up the cutie marks, this illustrates another issue: lack of consistency. Mostly in the fact that, like I pointed out in the review, those were all HUMAN symbols. The stupid awesome face, the Triforce, the Lollipop Chainsaw logo, all of those were from the human world, NOT Mobius. Therefore, it makes absolutely no sense as to why Lugbzurg knows any of them.

Speaking of Lugbzurg, he's incredibly bland. I can see you were trying to give him a personality, but it really didn't work well. Most of the time that should've been spent focusing on his character ended up mostly just showcasing him meeting up with other ponies and him freaking out slash wanting to get out of meeting them. He really feels like a terrible self-insert, and this really hurts the comic as a whole.

If you want my advice on making a good, defined character, here's what I would recommend. Try starting out with the most basic trait, or maybe two (i.e. lazy, spastic, grumpy, etc). One or two traits, and have that be their base personality. Write the character with just those traits in mind, and then later, as you get used to working with this character and their small amount of character traits, then work on fleshing them out more, giving them a more detailed backstory if you haven't already, giving their character depth, explaining more about why they have those character traits if possible. This method has worked very well for me, and while it would be better to start out with a characterization that's more than just a single character trait, if you're struggling with characters, this is also the best way to work on that. Once you get better at working with characters, you can try and start out more complex, but sometimes, the simpler, the better.


That's about all I can think of for now, but if you still want more, feel free to ask.

Reply Lugbzurg, January 19th, 2014, 4:42 pm

@Ultimate Yoshi: Oi... How did Eon get in there? As I recall, I had meant to write out that when he was struck, the tear in his rather odd oozish-gassy skin was supposed to get caught in the gravitational pull of the black hole and yank him in... Yeah, it's rather difficult to explain. And I was stupid enough to completely forget an explanation entirely.

Nova Reach and Derpy Hooves actually do have a role in the story. It just hasn't finished yet. They just needed to be thoroughly established and characterized before their shining moment together.

Bloodlust did have a somewhat different look in the flashback (mane and tail). Altering anything much else probably wouldn't have worked.

As for giving ponies magic, ALL ponies possess magic. It's just specific to each species. Earth ponies have earth-based magic, hence why the Apple family is entirely made up of Earth ponies. They are also much stronger and tougher than unicorns and pegasai. So, imagine Minty (the G1 pony in that scene) has been building up these skills as an earth pony, and suddenly has those ripped away upon turning into a unicorn. Suddenly, all of those skills are gone. Now she only have access to unicorn abilities, which she have no experience in whatsoever. All this knowledge of earth-based skills, and she can no longer use them. Now she has the potential for unicorn-based magic and knows nothing about it. Even foals are more skilled. All her hard work wasted. Your kind of misunderstanding is exactly what Bloodlust had. So, there was some depth to this scene, but that may have been the only one. In retrospect, a lot of things have gone unexplained in this comic and make no sense.

I really could have done better with Nova Reach's introduction and backstory, couldn't I? She just came in and did what she had to do in the story BECAUSE... THE PLOT DEMANDS IT! And not in a natural way. It came out pretty forced.

Flesh out characters, avoid references to things that should not be known within that universe, avoid self-inserts, put more thought into character designs, and EXPLAIN, EXPLAIN, EXPLAIN!

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