this is a really good concept but to my destress poor exicuted ill tell you my pros and cons
i like the over all theme
i like the colors
the shadeing is really good
the texture is really smooth and doesn't look like a cave system if it isn't then ignore this
thought the colors are good i would have chose another color cause right now it looks like roots even thought they could be roots it looks like there all sitting on tree stumps
when you look at your background and ceiling the shading is off and some of the changelings that are close are the same size as the ones far away and the ones that are farthest away don't look smaller
over all it was a nice picture could use some more work looks like you stayed in your comfort zone and didn't try anything to detail while things look good with not so much detailed this picture doesn't, a good effort and idea.
I thought this piece of art was amazing! The scenery was very changeling-esque, adding the right mood to this piece. The changelings all look very eager to get out, ready to nom some love, and take over! Although this piece is amazing, there's only one thing that bothered me; Queen Chrysalis seems to be missing her green back "plate." Although, that could mean the green orbs are changeling eggs, and that some are not ready, the smaller orbs look like newer ones. It's a very confusing, but nevertheless amazing piece, and I feel very lucky to have stumbled upon this picture!
It took the company ten minutes to rappel down from the entrance of the sinkhole, and all the while, they maintained their silence, the only sound that could be heard the wearing friction on the ropes and the soft, dull metallic clinks of the rappelling harness and the occasional fall of dust and rocks.
It was only after the Guards had secured the perimeter, their standard issue repeater rifles at the ready, and a lighting spell went up did one of them broke the silence.
"Oh dear Celestia" the awed private Quicksilver whispered, "Just how many cocoons are there in this place?"
The cavern's lights are dim, lacking a natural light. But even then, the light from the glowing cocoons and eggs was sufficient for the platoon to behold the sight - millions of eggs and cocoons, covering the ground and all around the cavern's pillars and roof. The hot, humid air was slick with an organic smell, coming from them all.
Each had a Changeling inside, suspended in a nutrient birthing fluid of a sickly green color, growing in serene bliss, a sharp contrast from their purpose as the next generation of ruthless, vicious and fanatical Changeling soldiers.
Beyond the immediate surroundings, the dim glow of the eggs could be seen even in the darkness of the cavern, stretching further on.
Quicksilver's partner answered it for him "Thousands, buddy... if not a million..." Corporal Swordsmith said, shaking his head, "and this is only a sub-hive, so I've been told."
"No wonder they had been giving our troops in the front so much trouble." A guard behind them remarked. "Every time a bug gets whacked, hundreds more replaces it, and then a thousand each."
The company leader Captain Arrowhead took a moment to grasp the multitude of, and then sighed deeply. "That's why we're here, private... Each Guard's death must had been a net victory for these folks, so the only way we could truly hurt these bastards' war effort is to hit them at the centers of production."
"Can't we just use bunker-busting missiles on these lot?" His radio operator asked, "I mean, it's a whole army here, it's ought to worth to use several of those missiles and bring the whole place down. Better than to sent us hoof-stompers down to take it out..."
"No, kid, it wouldn't work. The bugs ain't stupid. You saw how deep they had build these hives - underneath a bloody mountain. And not to mention the garrison they had placed around it. These hives are too important for their war effort to lose, they would had been made to be utterly impenetrable for a damn missile. The only way through these is a surgical strike, a small company of good - but expendable - troops to destroy it from within." The company unicorn mage, lance-corporal Spellfire explained.
One thing made the Captain wondered, though - the garrison force of Changelings they faced was large and heavily armed even by normal hive standards - three battle swarms, each a thousand strong. It took a long running battle with heavy artillery bombardment, air cruiser support and the rest of the Royal Guard regiment to take it out.
There's something important in this particular hive. Something that made the Changelings invest so much in its security. But what could it be?
Right at that moment, the Royal Guard pegasi scout, Bladerunner, returned, landing in front of him with a kick of dust, "Good news to report, private?"
"The Colonel's strategy is working so far, sir," Bladerunner reported, "the remaining Changelings are tied up trying to hold the regiment back on the other side of the hive, so it's home free to the bomb sites."
"Bad news?" Arrowhead asked. If there's anything he learned in these years of service, is that there's always a catch to a good situation. He wouldn't be a leader if he didn't prepare for them.
"Well... you might want to see it for yourself."
Captain Arrowhead's equine heart skipped a beat when he saw it. So did many of his stallions.
In a clearing around the field of eggs, was a single cocoon - it was larger than normal ones, though not as large as those Changeling Dreadcrawls or Changeling Behemoths. It sat at the center of the subhive, conveniently next to the four support pillars of the cavern which they had to place the charges.
What was inside scared the day lights out of him, not that he showed it.
"A Battle Matron..." Lance-Corporal Spellfire gasped, "They're growing a Brood Battle Matron in the hive..."
She LOOKED like a clone of Queen Chrysalis, but she was around the size of Princess Luna. Her carapace body is more refined and slender than the Changeling soldiers growing around her. Her eyes are closed, sleeping suspended in quickening fluid, but judging from the size of her folded insect wings, mane and tail, she looked like she was on the verge of full maturity.
That explained why the Changelings had so much defenses around this particular hive. Like the Drone Lords, a Brood Matron is a Changeling equivilant of Baronesses, Countesses, who rule entire hives in the name of their Queen. A Changeling Battle Matron is essentially a normal Brood Matron that was bred for combat, whose rank and power equals that of a general. Their magical prowess is unrivaled on the battlefield - whereas a company of Royal Guards could take down a behemoth, the walking tanks of the Changelings, a Battle Matron could devastate entire Royal Guard regiments without even suffering a scratch. They could cloak entire Changeling battle swarms with their infiltration magic, and inspire even greater fanaticism on the already loyal and devoted Changeling troops by their mere presence.
They are a nightmare to face on the battlefield. If this one had gotten out... who knows how many will die before she could be stopped?
"Time was running short, we have to finish this now." Arrowhead ordered. "Prep the charges."
The rest moved quickly, now VERY eager to get out. They opened the boxes they brought with them, and brought out their weapons - tactical sunbombs. The four of them were small, silver polished metallic things, barely bigger than a basket ball. The spell-casting spokes on them gave them an overall appearence of a sea-mine, but they are much deadlier than that. One of these is enough destroy entire towns and irradiate kilometers worth of surrounding land for years.
Gingerly they twist the nobs of the timers to ten minutes, careful not to make too much noise out of fear of waking the monstrosity in the cocoon. Then, they flipped a switch on each of them, and the devices vanished underneath invisibility spells that would hide them from prying eyes, so good that even the Changelings wouldn't have been to detect their presence.
"Charges set, sir. Do you have the weave?" Lance-Corporal Spellfire asked his commander.
Cpt. Arrowhead winced a bit as his unicorn horn glowed, and when it fade, he turned back to his subordinate, "Done."
"That's great, sir. Worse comes to worse, we can remote-detonate the bombs early if things goes south." Spellfire remarked grimly.
"Don't worry, my good stallion," Arrowhead remarked, "I don't think it's going to come to that."
As they turned to leave, they are unaware that behind them, the closed eyes of the Changeling Battle Matron had finally opened, for the first time in her life. Around her, many more Changelings eyes joined her.
You're free to do what you wish with your free time. I jus tnow if I check out your stuff I'll find an Omake. I just wish not all of them were the brutal defeats of the changelings. Even though I know writing war stories is WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. Sorry. I didn't meant ot be a jerk.