Hey guys! I was inspired by Canada24's list of his favorite (and least favorite) works of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic fanfiction to write up my own list as well. However, I don't really want to trash on anyone's stories, so I'm just going to do my favorites, but to make up for only discussing the favorites, I'll list more stories. My Top 15, as the title implied. Just a warning, I know some people aren't as big readers as myself, and don't want to read these long fics, but please at least look at what I have to say about them. As a warning though the shortest of my top 15 is 60,000+ words long. In addition to the title and author, I will also be prefacing my thoughts with a tag-list and chapter count, so people can get a quick idea of how interested they might be before they read what I think. Alrighty then, let's jump into it!
15. The Moonstone Cup
Chapters: 22, including the epilogue and side story
Starting off my list is a return to the days when Twilight was just a badass unicorn instead of a frickin' GOD. The gist of the story is that Twilight competes in the largest magic competition in the land, an event which unites the various races of Equestria, including not just ponies but also diamond dogs and dragons. Although there's a lot of political intrigue involving the different races, and a Trixie subplot, where this story shines is in the competition scenes. Specifically, in the magic duels. Seriously, I'd say the fic is worth reading if only to get to those parts. Not that you shouldn't read the whole thing, but they really are the best part. What keeps this story at the bottom of the list is the ending. It felt heavy-handed and almost out of place, not to mention that the writing made the final action scene difficult to follow, leaving me wondering "Wait, what?" during the resolution of said scene. But the rest of the story is solid enough to warrant this spot on the list.
14. Arrow 18 Mission Logs: Lone Ranger
Tags: Adventure, Human, Sci-Fi
Chapters: 16, including the short correspondence bits
Now this was a story that for a long time just kept popping up when I would look for fics to read, but I just wouldn't read it for two reasons. For one, it's a Human in Equestria, or HiE story, which I'm usually not a fan of. Secondly, the artwork for cover looked like every generic sci-fi story ever. Eventually though, I bucked up and read it, and boy am I glad. For one, it's written by an actual rocket scientist, so all his science checks out (assuming of course that pony magic works as he describes). Second, the story is fantastic. Essentially, it's about this astronaut who has been sent on a one-man mission to investigate an astronomical phenomenon in a distant star system. A system in which the star is orbiting a much smaller planet. Sound familiar? He ends up discovering life on this planet (I wonder what it could be?). The entire story is told through his on-board mission logs and correspondence pieces back and forth between members of the ground crew on Earth. I don't wanna spoil much of what happens, but seriously it's really good. Third, this guy made 3D modeled pictures of the ships and their maneuvers which he's embedded in the story, and he created some music to go along with certain parts as well. Definitely worth checking out. (Oh, also there's an unfinished sequel but that's not important.)
13. Vinyl and Octavia: University Days
Tags: Comedy, Romance, Slice of Life
Chapters: 22, including the epilogue
"Oh my GAWD, did triq really include a SHIPFIC in this list?!?" Why yes I did. But honestly this story is too good not to include. I'm actually currently re-reading through it right now to celebrate starting university. This is easily my favorite shipfic (well okay so there's one other higher on this list but I like that one for other reasons), and it's what made me not hate ScratchTavia as a ship. I love DawnFade's interpretation of all the characters, and he works in several OCs in ways I don't hate. Several of the jokes had me laughing out loud, and my chest actually tightens every time I get to Vinyl and Tavi's first kiss (spoilers for a 4-year old shipfic). The first time I read it, I couldn't put it down and spent the whole afternoon reading, at a time when I would normally read my longer fanfics no more than 3 chapters at a time. There's only one other author who has made me care this deeply about whether or not a relationship in a fanfic will work out, and that other story is my #1. Oh, and if you don't have a problem with light lesbian horse sex, DawnFade's link
fills in some of the missing scenes from the story where sex was happening "off-screen". Plus, not only is the story great, but it inspired a link link link link
and link link link link link link
. (Each of those words is a separate link to a separate fanwork btw.) The only ScratchTavia piece that comes close to this is Allegrezza, which I would also recommend, but that one doesn't break my Top 15 like University Days.
12. The Dresden Fillies: Strange Friends
Tags: Adventure, Comedy, Crossover
Chapters: 13, including the prologue
I'll be frank with you, I'd never even heard of The Dresden Files
before I read this fic. But The Dresden Fillies made me interested. Still haven't gotten around to actually reading them though. But regardless. This is a crossover done right. The character of Harry Dresden is played (from what I hear) exactly as he is in the original novels, and the way he ends up in Equestria makes perfect sense based on the world the books take place in. Surprisingly, the crossover character (Harry) and the cliche antagonist (Trixie) are the two best played characters in this story. I definitely recommend this story to any fans of The Dresden Files, or of any other similar works like Grimm
or Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
. Really just stands out as being the most well done Human in Equestria crossover I've seen. (There's also a sequel I haven't read but who cares.)
Tags: Adventure, Romance
Chapters: 13, including the epilogue
Forget the Romance tag, this isn't even a shipfic. It's only got that tag because Bon Bon goes on this EPIC quest to save Lyra. Now that that's out of the way, on to the story. Basically, (spoiler for a 4-year old fic that reveals this in the first chapter) the reason Bon Bon has a different voice every time she appears is because she's a Changeling named Mendax. Nobody knows this. But when Lyra is controlled by Chrysalis during the Changeling invasion of Canterlot, Bon Bon/Mendax goes on a quest to get her back, even if it means risking it all. This story wonderfully blends the mythology of the show with ancient Celtic mythology, specifically myths about fae. Plus it introduces a new race, kelpies, which were semi-popular in the fandom for a while. The most important kelpie is Bon Bon's travelling companion, link
, and I feel like she's maybe my favorite part of this fic. When she was first introduced, she was easily my least favorite character. But she grew on me. And even now that it's been years since I first read this fic, I still remember her, despite her starting off as my least favorite. I guess you could say she stuck with me
. You'll get that joke if you read the fic. This is also the fic that link
incredible picture is from, and the fic which gave me the song I think of whenever I need to link
. Oh, and it features one of my favorite pieces of changeling fanon, which also ties in to Aldrovanda's existential crisis, which is another of my favorite parts of this story. Anyways, this is definitely a must-read from me.
10. Night Guards
Chapters: 12, including the author's note and the bonus chapters
This is the story of Hammer and Anvil, the batpony guards seen in "Luna Eclipsed". Like there's so much I want to say about this story but I can't because I don't want to spoil some of this stuff because it really doesn't hit as hard if you know what's coming. I would definitely suggest that everyone read through the whole thing, including the bonus chapters, because even though they aren't a necessity for the story, they do tie up some loose ends. Sorry for not saying more, but just know that that's only because I want you all to read it.
9. On a Cross and Arrow
by Conner Cogwork
Tags: Adventure, Comedy, Romance
Chapters: 12, including the lead-in to the unfinished sequel
You guys have probably seen r63, or genderbent, versions of characters from the show, right? Ever notice how they all seem to be the same interpretations despite being portrayed by different people? Ever wonder why? Well that's because they're all from this little beauty. The epitome of the "Twilight screws up a spell" genre, this story stands out as the only time it's okay for Rarity to fall in love with herself. The characters may not be played exactly like they are in the show, but Conner makes it work with his humor and penchant for putting ponies in awkward predicaments. Oh, and it's an alternate realities fic that isn't TOTALLY convoluted. Just a bit convoluted. Easily one of the funniest fics I've read. Oh, and +50 points for the Ace Attorney references in there.
8. The Sisters Doo
Tags: Adventure, Comedy
Chapters: 22, including the epilogue
It's a simple concept. What if Daring Do and Ditzy Doo were sisters? But it's done so fantastically well. Daring is well done. Rainbow is well done. And this is easily my second favorite characterization of Derpy/Ditzy in any fic ever. Bonus points go to this story for calling that the Daring Do books were real a year before "Daring Don't" aired. This story does a good job of showing real character conflict, and of integrating several different mythologies, including the works of Lewis Carol. Seriously, I memorized Lewis Carol's "Jabberwocky" because of this fic. There are two side stories to this fic which begin and end over the course of the main story, but I didn't read those. One follows Dinky and the CMCs, the other follows Twilight and Pinkie, and in the end you'll find out that reading those was actually really important I guess? Whatever, I still love this fic anyway. Don't worry, it's Wabe-tter
than I'm making it sound. (God that pun was so bad and none of you are even going to get it.) Oh and also Lyra from Background Pony
makes a cameo. Or wait... who was I talking about again?
Tags: Adventure, Comedy, Human, Slice of Life
Yet another fic I marathon-ed, although I still wasn't able to get through the whole thing in one day. But this is an iconic fic. In fact, many of you have probably heard of it. Or at least the link
it inspired. This is THE Lyra fic. The ONLY one. I'm pretty sure I'd remember if there were more. A blogpost on EqD from like years ago once listed this fic as one of the top 5 most influential fics in the history of the fandom, and for good reason. This is the quintessential Lyra/humans fic. When I first read this I didn't know much about it, and there's something that happens pretty early on which guides the entire rest of the story that I was not expecting at all which completely threw me off. Bonus points for having several human characters I don't hate, minus bonus points though because none of those people are nearly freaked out enough by the things that happen over the course of the story. Still a great read and an important piece of fandom history. Oh also there's a non-canon side story which was created by JasonTheHuman for April 1st and initially uploaded in place of Chapter 18 in the story, and which still makes me giggle a little, titled link
6. It Takes a Village
Tags: Adventure, Comedy, Romance, Slice of Life
Chapters: 17, including the epilogue
It may shock all of you that a SPIKE-centric fic is this high on my list. But it's a good one. Basically, Spike has grown up, and is now link
. Not only does this lead to problems with his living in Ponyville, but also with the fact that he's pretty close to the territory of that one dragon from "Owl's Well that Ends Well". But his friends band together to protect him both from ponies who want him gone, and the angry dragon who wants him dead. It goes high on this list for being the first fic that made me care about Spike, and for the epic dragon fight scene which made me actually think Spike was cool for once. The thing which keeps this story out of my Top 5 is the epilogue. Over the course of the story, there is some light shipping. Just a little bit, and it's handled alright. Until the epilogue that is, which is seriously the worst handling of shipping I've seen in my entire life. Honestly, I feel this fic is better if you don't read the epilogue. I mean you can if you read the fic and REALLY want to know how the relationships end, but it probably won't be worth it in my opinion. But don't make that keep you from reading the fic. It's still great.
5. My Little Alicorn
Tags: Gore, Comedy, Dark, Sad, Slice of Life
Chapters: 18, including the toned-down version of chapter 15
This fic begins as a funny, lighthearted fic where Luna plays a prank on Celestia and turns her into a filly. It continues this path until you learn more about the pony who created the spell Luna used and all of a sudden the story becomes DARK AS FUCK. Like seriously you may have noticed in the chapter count I mentioned a toned-down version of chapter 15, that's because InsertAuthorHere had to publish two versions of that chapter because people were so upset by how gory and dark that chapter was that they refused to keep reading. This story also includes my second favorite interpretation of Pinkie Sense, but I don't want to explain it because the reveal, although the reader can totally see it coming, is still pretty great. Bonus points for the fact that you only have to read one version of chapter 15, and unless you have serious problems with gore/dark material, you should read the original because yeah it's dark but it's done so well. Also bonus points for having a villain who legitimately believes he's doing the right thing. I can't tell you enough how much this story defied my expectations, so go read it. You won't be disappointed. (Oh there's also a sequel you shouldn't bother reading)
4. Past Sins
by Pen Stroke
Tags: Alternate Universe, Dark, Sad, Slice of Life
Chapters: 22, including the prelude
Here we have another one of the fics featured in that one EqD article about the most influential fics in the fandom. This fic gave us link
, an OC I wouldn't be surprised if you'd heard of. She is essentially the product of a cult attempting to summon Nightmare Moon, and getting interrupted mid-way through. The pseudo-mother/daughter relationship Twilight and Nyx have is extremely well done, and it makes the later chapters of the story oh-so heart-wrenching (you may have noticed Twilight standing on the gallows in the cover art). The story does tend to get dark at times, but not as dark as either My Little Alicorn or my #1 choice. This is another story I really don't want to spoil too much of though, so that's all the thoughts I have to give for now. Oh, wait, also before I forget I want to say I really like how Pen Stroke interprets "star beasts" in this story. My fanon about that is built on his vision.
3. Keeping It Simple
by Ivory Piano
Tags: Comedy, Slice of Life
Eeyup, I included another shipfic on the list. AND it's one about Big Mac. But the shipping isn't why I love this fic. Before I get into the details, I'd like to mention that this is my most recently read fic (re-reading University Days notwithstanding), and it's already smashed its way into my #3 favorite fic spot. Plot-wise, this is a fic about what would happen if Mac were too severely injured to work on Sweet Apple Acres for an extended period of time. Shipping ensues. Now here's the problem with discussing this fic. I refuse to tell you who Big Mac is shipped with. Because that's half the fun of the story. Right up until the very end, you don't know who Mac is going to end up with. It could conceivably be any of the various characters presented as potential love interests. I will assuage your fears though by assuring you he ends up with a mare. That's part of why I love this fic so much though is that Ivory Piano does a great job of making sure that any of the potential love interests seem like viable choices to the reader at any given time. I also love the background he gives for Big Mac, and although part of me feels like some of the decisions Mac makes in the course of the story are very OoC, the other part of me acknowledges how spot-on Mac is played at other times. Also bonus points for Braeburn. (There's also an unfinished sequel but who cares?)
2. The Steadfast Sky
Chapters: 79, including the post-Overcast scene and the Hearth's Warming special
This fic seeks to explain the backstory for Equestria, the Elements of Harmony, Celestia, Luna, and Discord. Although completely rekt by the events of Season 4, the story is still fantastic. I really can't tell you my favorite parts because I refuse to spoil those for anyone, but just know that this story features young Celestia, Luna, and Discord going on an epic quest to save Equestria from an evil unicorn who seems very similar to Sombra despite being created almost a year before Sombra was revealed. The early chapters especially act as a sort of bildungsroman for the party, and later chapters have some of the coolest interpretations and explanations for things in the show I've ever seen. This is also the only time LunaCord is okay. Bonus points for Gen 1 Smooze. TheGreyPotter is also currently writing a non-pony version of the story, which I have no interest in, but it's there if someone wanted that for some reason. I'd recommend this story to anyone who enjoys well-done world building.
1. Fallout: Equestria
Tags: Gore, Adventure, Crossover, Dark
Chapters: 49, including the intro, prologue, epilogue, and afterword
Anyone who knows me should have seen this coming a mile away. I love Fo:E so much. And so do tons of other people. Heck, check out link
to see all the incredible pieces of fan content just for this fic that come out every day. I'm just gonna drop link link link link link
here. Oh, and there's also a bunch of music out there, and a fan-created link
in the works. This fic is easily my favorite of all time, and despite its length I've re-read it twice. Like my phone lockscreen is the Stable-Tec logo and the wallpaper is the Ministry of Wartime Technology logo. I'm already a big fan of Fallout, so it makes sense I'd love this story, but you don't have to be a Fallout fan to enjoy it. One of my brony friends who's never played a Fallout game in his life also considers this to be his favorite fic. The party members are so memorable, and kkat makes you seriously care about every single one. I don't know if there will ever be another fic which makes me care about its main character more than I did about Littlepip. Or Calamity, Velvet Remedy, SteelHooves, Xenith, or even frickin' Pyrelight. One thing to note is that this isn't a straight crossover like The Dresden Fillies was. This is more of a thematic crossover. Basically, the story is set in an Equestria in which there was a huge war in the past which obliterated both sides, and the story involves characters living hundreds of years later trying to survive this post-apocalyptic Equestria, very similar to the post-apocalyptic United States of the Fallout series. Several of the factions and plot points in Fo:E are very clearly based on factions and events in Fallout. The Steel Rangers are very clearly based on the Brotherhood of Steel, Stable-Tec is clearly based on Vault-Tec, and Friendship City borrows heavily from Rivet City. But kkat makes it her own and makes them different enough that even knowing those similarities you'll have a hard time predicting what happens. This story is one that has stuck with me since I first read it. When playing the Fallout games I'll still sometimes accidentally refer to the Brotherhood as Steel Rangers, or to my Pip-Boy as a Pip-Buck. I can never hear the word "calamity" without thinking of Calamity. One of my favorite parts of this story though is an aspect it does borrow very effectively from Fallout, that being learning what happened in the past slowly by finding things, such as recordings, personal effects, or bodies, all throughout the Wasteland. I'll never forget what happened to some of the characters from the show within Fo:E. This is also that fic I alluded to earlier about a fic making me care about whether a relationship worked out, that being the relationship between Littlepip and Homage (yeah spoilers she doesn't end up with Velvet who could've guessed). That ties in to another point about this fic. It's inspired a LOT of derivative fanfiction. The most popular is probably Project Horizons, but I don't like Project Horizons as much as many others seem to. The only must-read side story anyone has written that I'd suggest is link
, but that one contains light lesbian horse sex so watch out. But it's also so well done and fills in some holes (no pun intended) in the story behind Littlepip and Homage's relationship so perfectly that kkat actually went on the record as saying A Mare Worth Fighting For is the only fan-made side story which is canon within Fo:E. Anyways, my point is, this is my favorite fanfic of all time, and I would recommend anyone read this. (Ooh, and as a side note, kkat originally started writing this to get some of her friends who were fans of Fallout into MLP, so you don't even need to be a brony to like this.)
Well guys, that was my list of my Top 15 works of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic fanfiction. I hope you guys enjoyed, and if you have anything you want to say, don't hesitate to comment with your thoughts. Thank you, and have a nice day.