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Correct. But scry allows you to put any cards you don't want to see on the bottom of your deck, and Index does not. Basically, my initial point is that if you need something right now (or right next turn anyway), and anything after that point is worthless, then yes, Index is better. However, if that's not the case--and it usually isn't--then Scry is superior, because you would put all the cards you scried onto the bottom of your deck and move through your deck faster.
You know, putting the useless cards back to the bottom is nothing much different than putting them as the 3rd, 4th, and 5th card in the top (which is what Index allows you to do).
Er, you must very easy access to shuffling to make this claim. Because these effects are not similar in the least in their impact on deck progression.
In addition, if you can access the fetch lands, you can easily shuffle those useless cards back to the deck. What is the difference between put those cards at the bottom or put them on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th at the top?
If you have a fetchland, sure. What format are you suggesting to evaluate this in that has easy access to fetchlands?
And if you're asking what's the difference without shuffling it back, I'm not sure what to say to you at this point.
One more thing to notice. I am comparing this rare card with a garbage (almost...) common card, which is sad...
Oh, I can certainly agree that Index is a garbage card. Also, if this card only scried (IOW, if it was just the first part without Aftermath), it wouldn't be discussed in the least. I was more discussing the relative merits of 'Scry X' vs. 'Sort Y'.
Let's forget about fetch and shuffling stuff.
I am just talking about Scry 3 and Sort 5.
If your goal is looking for a specific key card, we all agree that Sort 5 is better than Scry 3.
If your goal is to filter out the useless cards from the top, Sort 5 (put the cards on the 3rd, 4th, or 5th at the top) does the jobs slightly worse than Scry 3 (put the cards at the bottom).
If you treat these two goals equally important, Sort 5 is on par with Scry 3.
Scry 3 is much better than sort 5.
In all points of the game there are certain cards you don't want. Being forced to keep two lands I'm your top 5 cards or being stuck with too many spells or expensive cards happen more often than not. I say this from experience since I've played both Sage Owl and Augur Owl in kitchen table and Scry is simply superior. Dead draws kill you and Scry removes them, or at least severely reduces their chances to happen.
This is maybe a worse case scenario where you have to put all of the three cards at the bottom, and hope you can get a better draw from the 4th card.
If you really need a key card and you do not hit from the top 5, the difference is:
Sort 5: You have to wait for 6 turns in order to get a new chance.
Scry 3: You have to wait for 3 turns in order to get a new chance, where the 3 useless cards are sent to the bottom of the deck.
Again, this is the worst case scenario for Sort 5.
The other way around , do you know what is the best case scenario for Sort 5?
Suppose the top 5 cards are all needed, in this case, Sort 5 does a much better job than Scry 3.