Twilight Sparkle and her friends are assigned to persuade the Equestria Games inspector to select the Crystal Empire,Twilight Sparkle and her friends are assigned to persuade the Equestria Games inspector to select the Crystal Empire,Twilight Sparkle and her friends are assigned to persuade the Equestria Games inspector to select the Crystal Empire,
While still not being totally enamoured by the episode and my initial problems still remain, re-watching "Games Ponies Play" did not turn out to be a loss. Actually liked it a little better this time, due to being able to appreciate the characters and character interaction more through older-age eyes and finding more to like about them (and other things about the episode). With a stronger story, "Games Ponies Play" would have been a better overall episode.
"Games Ponies Play" does succeed in quite a lot of areas. Have no issues with the animation quality which is always vibrant and fluid with lovingly detailed backgrounds. Or the well synchronised music that has a lot of character. Or the uniformly very good voice acting. Or the hardly out of date and nicely delivered moral.
There is some nice dialogue that flows well and some very funny moments, namely from Pinkie Pie. Absolutely loved what was done with Rainbow Dash and Rarity. The former, great season for her, going through a wide range of emotions and having some great character development worth getting behind. Rarity also brings heart to the episode. Cadence is likeable. Also enjoyed the supporting characters, Peachbottom especially was a breath of fresh air.
Sadly though, "Game Ponies Play's" story never fully connected with me. It did feel rather over-stretched and not always eventful. It revolves heavily too around one subplot concerning mistaken identity, that has nothing new to it. And the reveal that the character in question centers around would have packed more a punch if there was more of the character and if it all wasn't so obvious too early.
Everything is wrapped up too neatly and hastily at the end, and the episode had potential and a lot of room to do more with the whole Crystal Empire but sadly doesn't go through with it.
All in all, not a bad episode at all but it didn't come off completely successfully. 6/10
- Aug 4, 2020