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YMMV / Them's Fightin' Herds

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Oleander's nervous reaction when Fred brings up Cashmere near the end of the first chapter. Was it because she doesn't want to admit she does like her, or the complete opposite and Cashmere's flirting made her uncomfortable?
    • Similarly, Fred brought up Cash as "that reindeer [Oleander] likes so much" in a trollish way, bringing a She Is Not My Girlfriend kind of reaction from Ollie and said she just liked her glasses. Which one was telling the truth? If both or neither of them.
  • Awesome Music:
    • Velvet's Theme, as one fan aptly puts it, really captures the beauty and power of a winter storm. In-game, it plays during Arizona's final battle against Velvet.
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    • The Target Practice music combines upbeat rock and chiptune in a great way. The track was originally a placeholder to demonstrate the Dynamic Music System, but it was so well-received by fans that it was made into a Permanent Placeholder. The variation used for training also counts, especially if you have seen the livestreams were it was used as background music during the Q&A sessions. Unfortunately, the player 1 and player 2 variants of the track heard in streams went unused in the final product.
    • Huacaya Mountains (Paprika's Stage) will be playing in your head long after you turn off the game thanks to its catchy violin, accordion, and guitar.
    • Pre tty much every variation on The Woodlands' theme. Each haunting and hard to shake.
    • If you liked The Woodlands stage themes, The Woodlands pixel lobby theme is just as awesome.
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    • The battle against Oleander in the temple is split into three phases. The theme used for the first two is her already amazing character theme, but the second, Dark Cataclysm, is for the third and final round against her. This tune basically tells you, without a single word, that Oleander and Fhtng are one hundred and ten percent done playing games with you, young calf. It's also full of metal.
  • And You Thought It Would Fail: Them's Fightin' Herds had a tough road ahead of it when it was first revealed: its origin as a My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Fan Game means that people who aren't fans of that show might prefer to laugh at it rather than play it, but the fact that the characters aren't actually ponies, just Expies of them, also repels the Brony fandom who might be upset at how they're not really the characters they know and love. Additionally, the game's cutesy art style and character designs belie a full-fledged fighting game along the lines of Guilty Gear and Marvel vs. Capcom, a genre which can be rather unforgiving to beginners. At first glance, Them's Fightin' Herds would look like both an Audience-Alienating Premise and an Uncertain Audience, but it managed to earn itself a positive reputation once word spread that it is a genuinely well-made, balanced, and fun fighting game, its rich lore and well-written characters were able to differentiate themselves from MLP in the fandom's eyes, and its great tutorial and casual features such as the Pixel Lobbies helped ease fighting game newbies into the experience.
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  • Breather Boss: While she still puts up a good fight, Paprika's boss fight is decidedly more fair than the bosses that come before and after, with hardly any extra gimmicks aside from her occasionally doing a belly flop from the foreground.
  • Breather Level: Foggy Mountaintops, especially compared to the challenging mountain climb that preceded it. There are no enemy encounters, just you navigating a maze covered in fog before encountering Paprika at the end.
  • Creepy Awesome: Oleander and Fred, whenever they use their powers.
  • Crossover Ship: You could find a few shipping works with the game's six main characters and their Friendship is Magic counterparts.
  • Demonic Spiders: First appearing in chapter 3 of Arizona’s Story Mode are the birds (nicknamed Flappy). They move fast, hit hard, and are very hard to hit thanks to them being perpetually airborne. This is exacerbated by the fact that they are introduced in a platforming section, that they have a bad habit of knocking you off platforms with their charge attack, and that a good chunk of Arizona's moves only work on grounded opponents.
  • Designated Villain: The predators, from what we've heard of them, appear to be just trying to eat and survive. While it's understandable that the herbivores want to protect themselves, getting banished to another dimension is kind of an extreme punishment. In the October 10th livestream, Ms. Faust herself acknowledged this, saying that while it's true that the predators have to eat other creatures to survive, from a herbivore's perspective such actions are vile. She also explained the predators were originally planned to be straight villains until the fans began bringing up this trope, and that the final game "wouldn't be all black and white". It's also pointed out the Predators that were banished were ones who ate sapient prey, while those who don't were not.
  • Enjoy the Story, Skip the Game: Many are more interested in hearing about the lore of Foenum and the backstories of the six fighters than the actual fighting gameplay. This is actually encouraged by the devs themselves and one of main reasons for the creation of the Visual Lobby, in which players can explore the world, watch matches and other stuff even if they are bad at Fighting Games.
  • Even Better Sequel: Though Fighting Is Magic was never really released, Them's Fightin' Herds has several improvements over the leaked unfinished demo, including a few that would never be in a finished version of that game. Among them: widescreen HD graphics, the Dynamic Music System and a story mode written by Lauren Faust. For people who weren't fans of MLP:FIM (and even for a lot of fans) the new roster of characters is an improvement too, since the use of multiple animals will result in a bigger range of visual diversity than a roster composed only of ponies that were almost identical aside from wings and horns.
  • Fake Difficulty: All of the platforming sections use the fighting game's mechanics. That means that sometimes these sections can feel a bit clunky as you need to input the exact combinations for short and long jumps and the character's movements don't allow you to move as "pixel-perfect" as traditional platforming. For that reason it's more of a challenge trying to jump and land smoothly with the controls than any other hazards the game tries to throw at you. On the other hand, it really makes you feel like the character is actually doing the work of scaling a tall mountain, and they're being real careful not to fall.
  • Fandom Rivalry: After it was revealed that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate would not be part of the EVO 2020 lineup while Them's Fightin Herds was, a rivalry between the two communities was stoked. Many fans of the former were mad at the fact that a "brony game" overshadowed the much more popular Ultimate, while the latter's fans defended the organizers' decision, claiming that it's better for a smaller indie game to be in the spotlight rather than a big-budget AAA title.note  Ultimately, neither side won, as EVO 2020 was cancelled following the discovery that its co-founder Joey Cuellar was accused of sexual misconduct, which prompted several game developers, Mane6 included, to pull their games from the event. Them's Fightin Herds ended up on top as next year EVO was bought out by Sony, and with a majority of titles to be played on Sony Consoles, Smash Bros Ultimate was nowhere to be seen and Them's Fightin Herds would be featured as an online side tournament as the sole exception of the Console mandate.
  • Friendly Fandoms: Seeing as how the game was originally based on My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, it should come as no surprise that fans of the show also like this game. Even the fans who like Herds without being bronies have been known to get along well with them.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: For a long time, Oleander had the reputation of All of the Other Reindeer as a part of her backstory. Then, much later, her ship tease with Cashmere started to form when she began flirting with her more often (Probably Cap too, to a lesser extent, being the way that he is.). Serious or not, it's nice to see at least someone legitimately like her.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Pom's character bio reveals that while she's the most timid amongst the Key Keepers, she's considered the bravest amongst her fellow Sheepkin (since she's the only one brave enough to form an opinion). Several months later, season 6 of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic introduces Fluttershy's family in the episode "Flutter Brutter". It turns out Fluttershy, whom Pom was based on, despite being the most timid of her friends, is actually the most assertive member of her family.
    • The entire reason the game exists is because Fighting Is Magic got shown off at EVO 2013, which caught Hasbro's attention in an unavoidable way, resulting in a cease & desist. Several years later, Them's Fightin' Herds would end up getting included in EVO 2020. Though it would turn into a "Funny Aneurysm" Moment when this game would be taken out of EVO for different legal problems, this time on EVO's side. However, things changed in 2021 after Sony took over EVO, and TFH will be featured at EVO 2021 in an online side tournament.
  • Les Yay:
    • Paprika and her ridiculous amounts of affection to the other fighters, who so far are all female. Some of her moves have her hug and even kiss her opponents. The move on Oleander in particular is very close to her mouth.
    • Cashmere will get really flirty if the playable character has a lot of salt. note 
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Touch the COW. Do it now," associated with Arizona of course.Explanation 
    • MY HAIR IS ON FIRE!Explanation  Could be considered ascended with Tianhuo's Book of Lore title: "Oh my god, my hair's not on fire!''
  • Moe:
    • Pom, being a shy and nervous little lamb with an adorable Scottish accent, is impossible not to fall in love with, and really hard to want to fight.
    • Paprika, if you can get past her psychotic nature, is also really lovable, being a fluffy alpaca with big round eyes and a charming smile. The fact that her dialogue consists entirely of trills, giggles, and other miscellaneous noises instead of real words adds to the cuteness factor.
  • Narm Charm: The ridiculously bad pun that is the title.
  • Never Live It Down: Despite the identity overhaul, it seems that the game still won't shake off its reputation of "that My Little Pony fighting game". Some places, such as 4Chan, even still consider it MLP related because of its roots.
  • Popular with Furries: It's a game about talking animals (ungulates specifically), so attracting the furry demographic was pretty much inevitable. Velvet, in particular, seems to get the brunt of the fanart.
  • Shipping:
    • Velvezona (Velvet and Arizona) is very popular. This is partly due to those characters being expies of Rarity and Applejack (who are already frequently shipped), and seemingly supported by the developers' social media, where they often post or retweet pictures of the two of them. They even sometimes use the name "Velvezona" themselves, making it an officially supported (but likely not canon) pairing.
    • Cashleander (Oleander and Cashmere) was hinted in the December 2019 holiday update, and has gradually picked up steam following the Story Mode update and Halloween 2020 update. In the shop dialog, Cashmere openly flirts with Oleander (a treatment that none of the other characters getnote ), and the Story Mode implies Oleander likes her back but won't openly admit it.
  • Surprise Difficulty: The game stars an adorable cast of hooved mammals designed by Lauren Faust, which is more likely to appeal to casual gamers rather than hardcore fighting game fans. Surely the gameplay and the controls are easy right? Nope. This game plays like a traditional 2-D fighting game like Street Fighter, GuiltyGear or Skullgirls.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: When Shanty's teaser trailer dropped, many people pointed out that her theme sounds similar to Gangplank Galleon.
  • That One Level: The mountain climb at the beginning of "At the Mountain of Sadness". It has a lot of tricky platforming that requires mastery of the superjump mechanic (especially in the second half) and introduces the bird enemies who themselves are annoying to deal with. Prior to Patch 1.0.3., there were also no checkpoints, so if you died at any point, you had to start the whole climb over again.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: Some fans of Fighting Is Magic disliked the new direction that Mane6 took their game after the Hasbro C&D, mainly due to the new characters and setting having no relation to Friendship Is Magic. However, the fact that they're designed by Lauren Faust has somewhat softened the blow.
  • Ugly Cute: Shanty might not be as traditionally cute as the characters that were introduced before her, but she's still kind of cute in her own way.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: It's hard to tell if Ribbon is a boy or a girl, and they don't use other pronouns.
  • The Woobie: Pom, easily. She doesn't want to be here, at all, but was forced into it, and most of her intros and victory quotes are showcasing how scared she is. One of them is telling her opponent she's jealous they lost because they get to stop. This is added onto when animations were added, which include things like her puppy having to push her into the fight because of how much she doesn't want to. Her idle animation consists of her bracing to flee, locking eyes with her enthusiastic puppy, and stopping because she doesn't want to disappoint him.


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