Ah, The Omnipotent. The ultimate Story-Breaker Power. A Reality Warper able to do whatever they please or imagine despite physical or natural laws. A character in this class of power is nearly impossible to challenge.
Until they meet THIS guy.
This is a special type of No-Sell made especially for when two god-like beings collide. If two unique characters are "omnipotent", then there have to exist limits to their power. Logically speaking, two characters that can literally do anything is impossible, because just having individuality is technically a power. So in a contest of warpers, the one who will win is whoever can No-Sell the most. In such a scenario, if Omnipotent Being #1 is usually able to turn anyone to salt with just a thought, Omnipotent Being #2 is either immune, or can prevent or reverse that power with their own effort.
Sometimes, the entity in question simply encompasses a larger sphere of power: a Genius Loci, Odd Job God or Anthropomorphic Personification of a defined place will typically lose to a Cosmic Being, a Dimension Lord, a Multiversal Conqueror, or capital-G God. Being the God of Horses is fine, but it doesn't help you much against the Spirit of All Living Things.
At other times, each deity is a Principles Zealot and can be undone by a Logic Bomb or a bit of Rules Lawyering. In these cases, it doesn't matter how much power the opposition actually has, because the victim's own limits defeat them. These rules, or whoever imposes them, are what's Even More Omnipotent than either god.
So in order for this trope to be in play:
- Both characters must be a Reality Warper (or, alternately possess some sort of Imagination-Based Power or Semantic Super Power which bends the physical universe to their whims).
- One character nullifies, prevents, or No Sells the other. Alternatively, one character can pass through the other's omnipotence and affect them when they normally can't be affected by anything else.
- JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Vento Aureo ends with this. Giorno decides that enough is enough and pierces himself with the Stand Arrow, enhancing his Stand to the point that it could very easily nullify Diavolo's Stand power to effectively destroy the chronological cause-and-effect. Giorno's Stand then not only counters Diavolo's power, but also locks Diavolo into an endless cycle of near-death.
- Marvel Comics:
- The Infinity Gauntlet:
- In Infinity Trilogy, the eponymous artifact grants the wielder omnipotence when worn. More omnipotence than even, say, the Anthropomorphic Personification of the universe itself or all of the other Cosmic Beings of the setting combined. This becomes a plot point, because Thanos, the wielder of the gauntlet, is tricked into thinking that the only way to effectively dominate the universe is turn himself into the universe. But the second he does, someone else takes the gauntlet from his now-abandoned body and becomes the new big kahuna.
- An even better example comes at the end of the saga. The sole being not affected by Reality Warping, the Living Tribunal, simply snaps its fingers and resets the entire universe back to normal.
- Tends to happen whenever the Silver Surfer rebels against his creator, Galactus. Or when any being he bequeathed with the Power Cosmic tries the same, for that matter. Galactus is able to take back their powers at will or override any actions they attempt to take.
- The Ultimates (2015): When Galactus uses his powers to prevent the Ultimates from discovering These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know, Eternity (the embodiment of the universe itself) appears and tells Galactus that he's meddling in things not meant for him to know, either.
- The Mighty Thor:
- Thor's hammer, Mjölnir, was crafted by his father Odin with the specific caveat that no-one can lift it unless they be worthy. (Specifically, worthy by Odin's standards. This means possessing traits such as honor, courage, humility, and the heart of a warrior-born. Odin can also rescind this rule temporarily at his leisure.) Mjölnir will always go through any impediments (even a planet) to return to Thor's hand, and it (usually) can't be destroyed by a force which exerts less than Odin's own power. However, the first way to know that a new villain is serious business is if they destroy, restrain or lift the hammer by sheer force.
- This becomes a plot point in Thor (2014), as the hammer grows beyond its enchantment and gains the ability to choose its own wielder, rejecting both Thor Odinson and Odin in favor of the new Thor, Jane Foster. This hints that Mjölnir has grown far more powerful than anyone could have ever imagined.
- During the Fantastic Four quest to find the Beyonders, the team ran across the Beyonder from Secret Wars (a much lesser entity), who proved to be an incomplete Cosmic Cube, with the rest of his power residing in Molecule Man. Two beings who metamorphosed from complete Cosmic Cubes, the Shaper of Worlds and Kubik, say of Beyonder and Molecule Man both: "They can do anything. We can do more."
- The Infinity Gauntlet:
- DC Comics:
- Neil Gaiman's The Sandman has this in various places.
- Perhaps the most satisfying is during Season of Mists, the Key to Hell arc. The demon Azazel taunts Morpheus with having his former lover inside of his body (basically Alien Geometries), and threatens that he can kill her before Morpheus can attack him unless he hands over the key. Morpheus then calmly puts him in a jar and stuffs him in a box for a few centuries to stew in his juices. He reveals that since Azazel was inside of Morpheus' domain, and his former lover also benefited from the Sacred Hospitality he offered to all guests his own Reality Warping spectacularly trumped Azazel's.◊
- Justice League of America villain Dr. Destiny has nigh-omnipotent power over peoples' dreams. In the first book of The Sandman, he also has the Dreamstone, which gives him enough Mind Control to make an entire diner full of people mutilate, rape, and eat each other over the course of a single night. When Morpheus, the creator of the stone and Anthropomorphic Personification of dreams shows up to reclaim it, its powers, of course, do nothing to him.
- Specifically the Vertigo imprint, this describes the power of the Biblical figures.
- Neil Gaiman's The Sandman has this in various places.
- Bruce Almighty: God is completely omnipotent, and he makes Bruce nearly omnipotent, with only 2 rules. Plus, Bruce can still die, but God sets that right.
- In The Unexplored Summon://Blood-Sign, the White Queen sits at the apex of the Unexplored-Class, a category of beings explicitly beyond the gods. She can, without any effort, destroy the entire universe. The seventh volume introduces the Colorless Little Girl, an artificial creation designed solely to counter the Queen. The Girl completely and utterly No Sells every last one of the Queen's attacks, including an attempt at destroying the universe. She finishes by removing the Queen's influence over the universe, and killing her for good. Except that it turns out that the Queen wanted this to happen. She deliberately let the Girl defeat her (surviving through unknown means) so that the Girl would be transformed into an even greater being.
- This is the main premise of Suggsverse, as most of its beings are Omnipotent and beyond, yet they still fail to scratch beings even more beyond Omnipotent than themselves.
- Animorphs: The Ellimist and Krayak are two vastly powerful beings who already tried to do battle in the physical realm, which resulted in massive destruction . Then it turned out neither of them were a match for a black hole, but the Ellimist (thanks to having a consciousness spread out over hundreds of ships) managed to both go in and stay out of the hole, which allowed him to manipulate space-time. Both agreed that their newfound powers (Time Travel, Time Stands Still, and screwing conservation of mass, among other things) would result in certain Mutually Assured Destruction if they kept it up, so they agreed to become Chessmasters, one promoting life throughout the galaxy, the other extinguishing it, both fighting through native agents who may or may not be aware of their existence.
- In Star Trek, the different members of the Q-continuum can sometimes nullify each others' powers. It appears to work based on hierarchy and strength in numbers. (At some point Q insists that his species is not omnipotent, but they sure seem that way to humans.)
- In the The Twilight Zone (1985) episode "Crazy As A Soup Sandwich", the demon Volkerps is defeated by the "master of demons"', who turns out the be Nino, the mob boss.
- The The Twilight Zone (2002) episode "It's Still A Good Life" features the Reality Warper Anthony Fremont (first introduced in the original series) and his daughter Audrey. They have most of the same powers, but Audrey can restore things she or her father have willed out of existence, which he cannot do, and she can prevent her father from reading her mind while being fully able to read his.
- In the Doctor Who season finale, "The End of Time", the Master has turned the entire human race into copies of himself, and leaves a cliffhanger open where a new player is introduced in the form of the Time Lords. The next episode, their leader shows up, snaps his fingers, and changes humanity back to normal, it all being part of his agenda to destroy all of Time to move on to something greater.
- This trope is the axis of both the plot and the gameplay of Eternal Darkness, in the form of an Elemental RockPaperScissors. In short, three Eldritch Abominations are fighting each other, only balanced by the fact that each is weak to one of their counterparts and strong against the other. Most of the gameplay relies upon you choosing the correct alignment to dispel, combat, and summon magic to fight whichever of the three you chose as the main antagonist. This is capped off at the end by summoning the opposing Ancient to curb stomp the one who crosses into the real world.
- Which of course leads to this trope EVEN FURTHER in the game's secret ending. The Ancient which had been imprisoned by the Three, Mantarok, combines the three timelines, resulting in a Time Paradox not unlike a fish swallowing it's own tail, where all three Ancients simultaneously killed each other. Just as Planned.
- This trope was the case when eight thousand years before the main story of Kajiri Kamui Kagura the four Hadou Gods faced Hajun during the battle for the throne. The four Hadou Gods where all ridiculously strong, being able to affect the entire multiverse with their power. To make the difference clear, the first one was Mercurius, the former owner of the throne and mastermind behind everything during the prequel, being able to throw thousands stars and easely squash a universe into a singularity. The second was Reinhard Heydrich, who commanded an army consisting of billions of skeletons and possessed a giant amount of storybreaker powers and weapons, including the lance of Longinus which is able to erase anyone's existence with a strike, always go faster than the target and can never miss. The third was Tenma Yato, who was able to stop time of all of existence on a conceptional level and possessed the time armor, the series' strongest defense which negates any form of damage. The last of the four Gods was Tasogare, the fifth owner of the Throne, a hyperdimensional artefact capable of manipulating all of reality, and had the guillotine curse, which kills anyone who touches her. The one who defeated them all, Hajun, on the other hand was able to do that because of the series power level, the Taikyoku level. If one has a higher level than the opponent, then one can't be affected by the powers of the weaker one. The four Hadou Gods all had a Taikyoku value of 90 while the scale of Hajun was literally infinite.
- Homestuck features characters called First Guardians who are explicitly omnipotent immortals that can teleport anywhere in the universe and give off unlimited radioactive energy. They are nowhere near the most powerful characters in the setting and handily end up being defeated by the Author Avatar, a character who gets the best possible roll of magical dice, a character who embodies pure Hope, and the extra-immortal, ghost-killing, and omniomnipotent Lord English. In Lord English's case, this is because certain circumstances have granted him the powers of a First Guardian in addition to the incredible powers he already possessed.
- In one of the God-Man series of parody comics, God-Man is rescued from a paradox by God-God-Man, and the end of the comic states there is a neverending chain of such heroes.