Fucking hell, I didn't see the 'pretty pig' part at first!
Anyway, EQG has its ups and downs, but I think what it benefitted most from was it's limitedness, even if I'd have preferred more; it meant the better scenarios could be picked for the scripts rather than the "shit, we did that three seasons ago, now what?" ennui which long runners like the main show often suffer from. Them almost invariably being 'feature length' meant they had more time to let the story breathe and develop, which I feel was often a big problem with the later seasons of MLP, timing and pacing. Look at Rainbow Roadtrip, that similarly benefitted. And finally (I can hear the cheers) the Human part meant that the 'modern life/tech' jokes which the general MLP crew clearly wanted to make didn't come off as so outlandish when not trying to apply them to Equestria.