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Submitted on
July 27
Image Size
8.6 MB


16,174 (13 today)
1,317 (who?)
Rise & Fall of the Balk by AssasinMonkey Rise & Fall of the Balk by AssasinMonkey
"Amongst the first to rise, not the last."

Unlike usual, I'm keeping this backstory, short, ambiguous, unbiased (even though the image kinda appears biased hah) and with a broader meaning then might appear, for a change.
There's a reason for that, though.

Edit: Additional story information.
"This scene marks a beginning, not for one but for all. It doesn't just mark the future but also the past, the events that led to this point and all that come beyond. Even when such a moment can simply not be pinned to a single point in time. It represents the escalation of contact, the resistance against ideals, and the refusal to give in.
Pride to that what is known and fear for what is not."

With this I'm attempting to reinvigorate my First Contact War universe I had started but last worked on back in April.
That was too long ago, so I thought I'd bring it back big and with both sides. Much like the first piece where this entire universe started 2 years ago. ( )
Going by the time spend, it's amongst the biggest, hitting an approx of 30 hours with only 2 other pieces in my gallery along those lines.

The amount of characters this had, I knew it wasn't a small piece and I kept it to my Saturday Livestream. For those who might have noticed me upload the WIP last week. ( )
So I hope I delivered on the expectations that one brought. It was quite fun to make this, for different reasons.
The scene, the colours, the poses, action, amount of characters (I wanted to do a crowded piece again for a while) and all the puzzling.
Good fun, may it been an enjoyable one to watch being streamed, as well.

I'll be trying to make more FCW stuff in the future building upon the universe.
This piece has quite some things going for that, maybe I'll explain those later in a larger backstory quote.

Approx Time: 30+ hour?
Time Lapse: Pending
(slightly incomplete missing some hours, will have to check on this later)
Rise & Fall of the Balk [WIP] by AssasinMonkey

PS: Me and my title words
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I'll explain what I see as what a normal person will see.

First Thoughts:
I see emotion, fear, hope, and loyalty. It was one of those things that held a classic feel to it that made me go right for the favorite button. The first thing I saw was the front pony standing center. This aloud my attention to go right to her, the way you made her stand out with frond and center, hoofs up and lighting. That was well done. Though I look at her face and can't tell if she is either sad, because the lines are tears, or if she is angry because the lines are scars.

Second Look Thoughts.

I then saw the griffons, I saw them before the ponies. The lack the look of rage, but are more in a hunt. That is what I see at first look. My attention then went to the ponies that the lead looks towards. I see a look of determination in them. It covers any fear or rage they have, and any who looks upon this piece should look at the faces of each individual face. Even the ones in shadow.

Art in Glory:

The detail in the piece is simply divine. From the feathers on the griffons, to the sand on the ground. Each pony and griffon is unique in design and color. AssasinMonkey did a wonderful job on this account. I am unaware of the universe this piece takes place in, but the classic feel in this piece will guide me to finding out more.

Art in the Dirt (Cons)

There is not much I can find to be picky on. Simply because I know I can not do better. There are not many question left in my head that leaves mystery other than wanting to find out more of this universe.

5 stars because I can tell that the artist got down what they wanted to. Giving the onlooker a masterpiece to gaze at.

5 Stars simply due to the fact that you can't find many works with this style and technique, and place such a good emotion to adsorb. In the MLP universe, I heard about the Griffon/Pony war... but never had I seen art to this level to help picture it. I love the fact that there are no weapons in the whole piece.

I'm no master on this topic, but even my eyes know good work done due to educated hands. 5 Stars


Takes a lot for me to hit the Favorite button. Like allot. Though I can't really speak a reason to give 5 stars, I'll cut close and give you 4.5

I'm excited to see what more this artist has to offer.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
13 out of 14 deviants thought this was fair.

Critique by Magic-Dream-Pony Jul 28, 2014, 12:27:40 AM
First I must say this is a spectacular picture.
Vision is great, pony battle is realy realistic. You've planed every piece of this.
Originality...Pony battle.Yes, I've been seen lots of pony battle drawings,but for amazing picture, high score.
Technique, no word that can describe how awesome it is.
Impact:epic pony battle, anger, fear, battle...
This is an awesome picture and keep going making more!
I see lots of hard work here, and it is so great to see that here.
Just keep going and wat is most important of all things, bee yourself.
And have fun when you are drawing!
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
5 out of 6 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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mlpDreamer Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2014
So much detail! I love it!
Ashoof Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2014
whoa.. like WHOA! WOW! GOOD! whoa!
TomFraggle Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2014
This looks amazing!  Well done!
zombie21943 Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Griffons FTW!
K4nK4n Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014
Truly epic!
midnitedew Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014
Bearded pony ^^
Nidle Featured By Owner Aug 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've been trying to figure out how to do this type of art style, but never figured out the name or how to do it. any tips?
Here-for-the-ponies Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2014  Student Digital Artist
I haven't been this awe-stricken, or at such a loss for words by any other piece in the fandom in at least a year. I hate picking an absolute favorite among artists, because there are so many different aspects and qualities among different artists, but, man, any more of this quality, and I may have to officially consider you as my favorite in the fandom.
AssasinMonkey Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Oh gosh, being considered even close to someone's favourite is quite an honour! Especially since I know how hard it can be too choose, I never manage to choose :XD:

But just hearing things like that, makes me even more not want to abandon anything. I must keep going! :D
Here-for-the-ponies Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2014  Student Digital Artist
That's the spirit!
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