This entry is part 11 of 13 in the series (Vexing) Devil's Advocate

 

378127_10150441621792624_1477312954_nNo foreplay today, guys. No teasing lead-ins, no easter egg-ridden scenarios, no cute little narratives. We all know what day it is, so I’m just going to get it over with.

It’s time to do this thing. It’s time to defend Omniscience.

S#!%.

You f^#%er's in the comments are finally gonna get what you asked for.

You f^#%er’s in the comments are finally gonna get what you asked for.

One of the first things you learn about preparing for a debate is to predict the opponents’ arguments so you can go into the actual showdown with counterpoints prepared. What you end up with when you’re finished this exercise is a sheet of well formed points, and the perfect responses formed to tear them down.

I think this article is going to be best presented in this format, so that’s what I’m going to do: list off every reason I hate Omniscience, then rip it apart in front of the whole internet.

This may be the dumbest thing I have ever done on this site. Lucky for you guys, I am woefully lacking in good judgment.

My judgement is probably a little better than these guys, but not by much.

My judgment is probably a little better than these guys’, but not by much.

In My Client’s Defence…

Omniscience is a stupid freaking card that should have never been printed, and should be banished from EDH and forced to go chill with Zod in the phantom zone, forever and ever.

Well that is one douchebag’s opinion, got any legitimate reasons to back it up?

The card doesn’t make sense mechanically, it’s insulting from a flavour standpoint, and it is never played in a non-abusive way. It’s like a holy trinity of stupid.

Yeah, that’s cute and all, but saying something doesn’t make it so. You are actually going to have to present something that resembles evidence at some point.

Shit, is this what it’s like to argue with me? Sassy much?

"Stop making jokes!" "No, you stop making jokes!"

“Stop making jokes!”
“No, you stop making jokes!”

Fine, we’ll move down the list. Mechanically, a card that just lets you ignore mana costs unconditionally is not only beyond stupid, it also doesn’t make any sense to have it in blue’s section of the colour pie.

Well, there are plenty of stupid effects printed on cards. Blightsteel Colossus, Iona, Shield of Emeria, Avacyn, Angel of Hope, and Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre are all big stupid cards that are legal in commander. Yet I don’t hear you (me? us?) whining about it weekly. So what, they are okay because they aren’t in blue?

And Omniscience is just following in a long line of blue cards that give you discount rates on your cards, like Show and Tell or Dream Halls. There is precedent for this ability in blue, you’re just ignoring the facts. You’re like a creationist, with a penchant for vulgar humour and a hate on for the colour blue.

Wow, go ahead and offend the religious readers, dumb@$$. And if you take a closer look at those cards you will see that they don’t make the cards free. One involves a calculated risk and the other allows an alternate resource for mana. What they both involve is using your brain, y’know, like blue players are supposed to like. Unlike Omniscience, which is just a big dumb stick that WOTC justifies by slapping a big mana cost on it.

But to be fair, that is a really big stick.

But to be fair, that is a really big stick.

Sure, you’re (I? We? This is really confusing.) right, it is a big dumb stick without strategic drawbacks, but that’s hardly exclusive to blue. WOTC has been very vocal about how they find that players don’t like cards with drawbacks, so they are trying to rotate them out. Omniscience is just the new version of those old cards. Want to cry? You shouldn’t do it about one card. Do it about WOTC’s new overall design philosophy.

Fine, but it’s still insulting to anyone who doesn’t play blue to say that colour is the way to essentially become a god.

No, it’s insulting to anyone who has sworn off blue completely and carries a personal vendetta against the colour. You are pissed off, but it’s only you, so suck it up. You freaking oversensitive wuss.

Did you just call me, and therefore yourself, an oversensitive wuss?

Yeah, so I guess that isn’t an abrasive insult so much as it is self deprecating? This is getting really confusing, we should go see a psychologist about this.

I don't want to end up like this guy. Although, his fan base is way larger than mine...

I don’t want to end up like this guy. Although, his fan base is way larger than mine…

Good plan. But first, we must address the last point. No one ever hard-casts an Omniscience on turn ten, they either madly ramp into it or cheat it out with Academy Rector. It’s totally abused.

Awww, a card is abused? In EDH? Really!? It must be a day that ends in Y!

This is the format with the least restrictive banlist in all of Magic, you (I? We? Dammit!) could break a Craw Wurm if you wanted to. And this card, while very close, is not an instant win on its own. So it doesn’t even crack the top tier of worst offenders. It just happens to be the card that gives you a hissy.

And that is okay. We all have a card that gives us a hissy. And we can rant in the comments about it or post stupid articles b!^&#ing about it on Commandercast.com. In reality, we probably should to get it out of our system. That way, when someone plays the card against you in person, you can just smile, laugh, and play on, instead of exploding on them.

And then they get to be the bad guy, not you.

Kryptonite Rings and Silver Bullets

Getting tips from me about how to kill Omniscience? That’s kind of like getting vampire slaying tips from Blade.

"There's always some motherf^#%er trying to ice skate uphill.

“There’s always some motherf^#%er trying to ice skate uphill.” Best movie quote ever.

Hmm, well let’s bring this back to what “Italics” up there said (stop referring to me as a separate person, you are only convincing them of your insanity. Our insanity? Shit, I’m doing it again!).

Anyways, what I said in italics, Omniscience is always cheated out. Therefore, something as simple as bouncing it back to its owner’s hand will often be sufficient to make an opponent cry. Delicious, blue-flavoured tears. Which is ironic, seeing as how you will need to use blue spells to do this. Like Venser, Shaper Savant, Cyclonic Rift, or Wipe Away.

Did someone say Wipe Away? Segue alert! There are a two other split second cards that also smack Omniscience upside its skull. Krosan Grip will take out Omniscience before your opponent can cast a single free spell. And then there is this other card. It’s called Word of Seizing. I’m just gonna leave this here to make of it what you will.

Lastly, one thing I’ve tried to drive home over and over is to see past scary cards and cut them off at the resources they need. Omniscience needs cards in hand, and any black mages around your kitchen table can probably do something about that. If there was ever a time that the guy with Mind Twist could be the White Knight, against Omniscience is it.

Wait, not that White Knight... You know what, whatever. I am guilty of puns.

Wait, not that White Knight… You know what, whatever. I am guilty of puns.

We, the Jury, Find the Defendant…

“You know, I could just kill you now. You have served your purpose,” Omniscience’s avatar hissed at me from the other side of my cramped office.

“I wouldn’t do that,” a voice called out from my door way. The avatar and I looked up to see Vexing Devil leaning against the door cooly, and still totally pants-less. “Eric prepped the mana for a Word of Seizing when you walked in the door. If you feel like trying, go ahead. I would love to watch him make you tap dance into a Chaos Warp.”

Omniscience turned to me just in time to see my wry smirk. He spun around and stormed out of the room, stopping long enough to nod at Vexing Devil and spit back at me, “I will see you again, Eric.”

“I sincerely hope you have a mouthful of s#!% then, too.” I smiled back at him.

He just snarled and left. After Vexing and I heard the front door of the building open and close, he turned back to me. “You handled that well, Eric, I’m impressed. Anything else I can get you while I’m here? You’ve earned it.”

I thought for a moment, and then it sunk in. I had just defended my most hated card.

I could keep defending maligned cards, even more maligned than Omniscience. But not more maligned by me. This was my plateau. I had put my money where my mouth was, and put up for the card that I hated the most. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that another case wouldn’t satisfy me anymore.

“Yeah, Mr. Vexing Devil, sir,” I said with more respect than I had ever shown him, or maybe anyone. “I’m going to need my resignation papers. I think this is the end for me.”

Cliffhanger, anybody?

Cliffhanger, anybody?

Oh, no! Is Eric leaving the site? Is he writing a new column? Is William going to have him arrested for vandalizing Commandercast.com? You will have the answers to these questions and more next Thursday!

Unless, of course, you are feeling very impatient. In which case you may want to check back on Saturday to see an extra special preview of upcoming content. Seriously guys, come back in two days to see something that will make you the most excited. In the pants area. It will give you a happy-boner, is what I’m saying.

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