Magic: The Gathering: Archenemy, Pt. 15: What's Mine Isn't Yours
Hello and welcome, all players, collectors, and other fans of Magic: The Gathering, the premier collectible trading card game designed, developed, and produced by Wizards of the Coast! Well, it's been a long stretch of time since we've started — all of fifteen weeks, to be exact — but we are finally at the last article in our series on Archenemy, Magic's 3-on-1 format where players take on a big bad, the role of which is assumed by a different player. In this article, we will be exploring cards of a sort that explore that feeling we get when we look in a mirror and see a reflection that isn't our own. It's something new, something strange, perhaps even lesser than you are.
Oh, okay, we are just pulling your leg a little bit here; this article is exploring the last three scheme cards in the original Archenemy release, all of which happen to begin with the word "Your". There's no real link between these schemes other than that, but it does serve as a good reminder to any aspiring Big Bads out there to make sure your opponents get put in their place, and that they know it. Onward to the analyses!
As with all of our Archenemy scheme ratings, we have to explain how this works. If you've read these before, this section will be pretty familiar, but if you're just reading for the first time, here's how it works:
All Schemes will be grouped according to the overall role they play: These groupings are categorized as such:
Disruption: The Schemes take something from your opponents (and only them) that doesn't exist on the battlefield. This could be cards in hand, life, or choices like the ability to attack or cast spells.
Global: These Schemes impact each player with less disparity than the other Schemes in the game. Usually there will be an even effect for each player including the archenemy and/or their opponents, for a certain duration or instantaneously.
Removal: These Schemes remove opponents' permanents from the battlefield. These are rather self-explanatory, but could include the need for an opponent to make a tough decision.
Tempo: These Schemes give you as the Archenemy (and only you) some sort of expedited value, such as ramp, cards drawn, or even an extra turn, to name a few examples.
Value: These Schemes give you as the Archenemy (and only you) something such as tokens or cards put onto the battlefield, to name a few resources potentially granted this way. This does not include resources such as sources of mana or drawn cards, however.
Next, the Schemes will be grouped further on a scale of 1-10 in terms of how well they do their job in the role provided, with 1 being rather underpowered and 10 being broken.
Knowing now what you may not have known a minute or two ago, let's push forward! We're in the final stretch now!
#43. Your Fate Is Thrice Sealed
Your Fate Is Thrice Sealed (Tempo, 5/10) isn't exactly as good as Realms Befitting My Majesty in terms of getting lands onto the battlefield as it absolutely has a non-zero chance of whiffing, but it's clear to us that a few things make it less terrible than it could be in comparison: a) this scheme can get you nonbasic lands, b) it isn't beholden to effects like Opposition Agent or Aven Mindcensor, and c) anything that isn't a land gets put into your hand, meaning it could be a free "draw five cards" without the ramifications of literally drawing cards. Furthermore, because it was printed in each Archenemy preconstructed deck, financially speaking, it's quite easy on the new and aspiring Archenemy. Pretty good, though anyone with a large enough budget might spring for bigger-impact schemes.
#44. Your Puny Minds Cannot Fathom
Your Puny Minds Cannot Fathom (Tempo, 4/10) is marginally worse than the aforementioned Your Fate Is Thrice Sealed, but it does give a slight advantage to you that that one cannot: it provides a Spellbook effect for the round, meaning you won't have any issues with discarding down to hand size at your cleanup step. This is not a bad thing unless you seriously needed to discard cards by choice without an outlet. That likelihood is very low, as in that case, you'd probably want to have many discard outlets in your deck anyway. But it matters not; you're still drawing a bunch of cards for free.
#45. Your Will Is Not Your Own
Your Will Is Not Your Own (Value, 6/10) is a weird hybrid of Removal and Value. It temporarily gets rid of an obstacle in your way, but it also makes it yours for a turn; not only that, but it improves on the original design by giving it a temporary power/toughness boost, trample, and haste. It's a very simple design but an elegant one, and it could be made better by having a sacrifice outlet on the battlefield at the time for added delicious treachery.
Now, if you've read the mental fine print, you'll know that Archenemy the Magic: The Gathering release doesn't include the promo scheme cards, nor does it include Archenemy: Nicol Bolas. What that means is that this isn't the last you'll see of us on this topic. Like any good villain, we will be back soon with more of this for you! But in the meantime, what do you think about these supplemental cards for the game? If you wish to see them return in some form, consider writing to Wizards of the Coast and imploring them to have them make a comeback! What's the worst that could happen? In the meantime, however, please feel free to tell us your thoughts in the comments below!