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Ranking the Best Fighters -- My thoughts (TOM spoilers!)

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A mernory of light spoilers

 

Hi guys

 

I jsut made an account but thougth would add my two bobs

 

1) people are forgeting Demandred he kills gawyn, beats galad and gives Lan a run for his money. He has got to be in the top three if not #2

 

2) Lan is #1 due to his self control and the fact that he does not care if he dies (Mat is good obviusly but he would not have the discipline to "sheath the sword" to win)

 

3) My list goes

#1 Lan

#2 Demandred

#3 Mat (Is hard to place against Denanderd as they are obviusly 2 and 3 but they never fight it out)

#4 galad(In my opinion this is were it gets Hard)

#5 Rhuarc

 

4) you must also consider the area and situation in which they are fighting agianst multiple foes mat has the advantage of a staff (both ends) or in Tel'aran'rhiod perin is obviusly top dog followed by slayer.

 

thankyou for reading

 

Lan pretty much explicitly states that Demandred is the better swordsman. Being willing to sacrifice your life to win isn't really a quality as a swordsman. 

 

Mat is impossible to rank really. His luck means that he could beat anyone.

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A mernory of light spoilers

 

Hi guys

 

I jsut made an account but thougth would add my two bobs

 

1) people are forgeting Demandred he kills gawyn, beats galad and gives Lan a run for his money. He has got to be in the top three if not #2

 

2) Lan is #1 due to his self control and the fact that he does not care if he dies (Mat is good obviusly but he would not have the discipline to "sheath the sword" to win)

 

3) My list goes

#1 Lan

#2 Demandred

#3 Mat (Is hard to place against Denanderd as they are obviusly 2 and 3 but they never fight it out)

#4 galad(In my opinion this is were it gets Hard)

#5 Rhuarc

 

4) you must also consider the area and situation in which they are fighting agianst multiple foes mat has the advantage of a staff (both ends) or in Tel'aran'rhiod perin is obviusly top dog followed by slayer.

 

thankyou for reading

Lan pretty much explicitly states that Demandred is the better swordsman. Being willing to sacrifice your life to win isn't really a quality as a swordsman.

 

Mat is impossible to rank really. His luck means that he could beat anyone.

Still being prepared to kill your man at any cost has to count for something. Being the better swordsman doesnt mean that he was the best warrior. As Druss the Legend says " There is only one way to survive in war, and that is by being willing to die."

Edited by damandred

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Lan pretty much explicitly states that Demandred is the better swordsman. Being willing to sacrifice your life to win isn't really a quality as a swordsman.

No, he only states that Demandred was the better swordsman at that moment.

 

AMOL-37:

Despite Lan’s initial offensive, Demandred was the better swordsman.

Lan knew this by the same sense that told him when to strike, when to

parry, when to step and when to withdraw. Perhaps if they had come to the

fight evenly, it would be different. They had not. Lan had been fighting for

an entire day, and though he’d been Healed from his worst wounds, the

smaller ones still ached. Beyond that, a Healing in and of itself was draining.

Demandred was still fresh.

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Lan pretty much explicitly states that Demandred is the better swordsman. Being willing to sacrifice your life to win isn't really a quality as a swordsman.

No, he only states that Demandred was the better swordsman at that moment.

 

AMOL-37:

Despite Lan’s initial offensive, Demandred was the better swordsman.

Lan knew this by the same sense that told him when to strike, when to

parry, when to step and when to withdraw. Perhaps if they had come to the

fight evenly, it would be different. They had not. Lan had been fighting for

an entire day, and though he’d been Healed from his worst wounds, the

smaller ones still ached. Beyond that, a Healing in and of itself was draining.

Demandred was still fresh.

 

 

Maybe, but frankly this:

 

Despite Lan’s initial offensive, Demandred was the better swordsman.

Lan knew this by the same sense that told him when to strike, when to

parry, when to step and when to withdraw.

 

Doesn't seem to indicate that their physical condition is what's making Demandred a better swordsman, he just knows it instinctively. Their skill isn't diminished by their fatigue, just their ability to fully make use of that skill.

 

To me, the line you bolded just means that Lan feels that if he was fresh, he could beat Demandred, in spite of Demandred's superior skill, just like Galad defeated Valda, even though Valda was the better swordsman.

 

Also, although Demandred wasn't as tired as Lan, Taim's point of view a little earlier makes it clear that Demandred is actually somewhat drained by using a sangreal like Sakarnen for so long.

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Yeah Lan lived, Demandred died. End of.

As a way of keeping score, is there a better way to decide. The thread says best fighter, surely in a one on one duel the best is he who survives, regardless of skill.

Edited by damandred

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Doesn't seem to indicate that their physical condition is what's making Demandred a better swordsman, he just knows it instinctively. Their skill isn't diminished by their fatigue, just their ability to fully make use of that skill.

 

To me, the line you bolded just means that Lan feels that if he was fresh, he could beat Demandred, in spite of Demandred's superior skill, just like Galad defeated Valda, even though Valda was the better swordsman.

 

Also, although Demandred wasn't as tired as Lan, Taim's point of view a little earlier makes it clear that Demandred is actually somewhat drained by using a sangreal like Sakarnen for so long.

Not to make a big stink about it but I think it's pretty clear what Lan is relaying here and it's not what you have taken from it.

And it's not just about fatigue between the two of them, Lan is injured. Only his major wounds have been healed, he still has many minor wounds affecting him. Demy may also have some fatigue going on but he does not have any wounds slowing him down what so ever.

Edited by Finnssss

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I really don't think that it's possible to judge who is 'better' at that level of skill. It's easy to distinguish between Lan and Gawyn because of the considerable disparity, but Mat, Rand (2 hands) Lan Demandred and Be'lal would all be too close to call a definitive "x is better than y".

 

Lan didn't really survive his encounter - that had to be something Rand did or some other crazy miracle - nobody just gets up from that. Even so, he did 'win' the fight I suppose, so if we are going to judge them on that - Lan was the ultimate 'champion' of the little cage matches. 

 

When talking about who is 'better' that's a hard qualifier. We know so little about the actual specifics of their fighting styles, strengths and weaknesses, preferences etc... it would almost be impossible to tell. 

 

For example, Lan's style may be completely different to Galad's or Demandred's. Lan may have the attitude, the suicidal contempt for life, but he may be technically outstripped by Demandred or even Galad who's style seems to be precise and fluid but lacking the experience and instinct of Lan. 

 

Similarly Gawyn's bold, even rash style could give him the advantage over someone like Galad who is pretty precise as mentioned. 

 

Also, to add to Master Ablar's comments, I don't think Lan's assessment of Demandred is quite correct. Demandred is far from 'fresh' at this point. He has spent the entire day channeling huge amounts of the OP with Sarkarnen which seems to have the mentioned draining effect. He also sustained not insubstantial wounds (although far from grave to be sure) from Galad and even Gawyn managed to slice him a few times. Then there is the assault from Logain (although really, Logain got pretty smacked and didn't do too much damage, but it adds to the fatigue). 

 

There's also the fact that Demandred was sure Lan was Lews Therin and no doubt was wary of him using the power (although late in the duel, they both seemed completely focused, so the effect I would say would be minimal, but still a factor.) 

 

So I don't think the whole "Lan was totally beat and Demandred just got out of bed" comment from Lan should be taken at face value. ANd I have to agree with Master Ablar about Lan's comment. He clearly says that he was the better swordsman, not he was only better because he was tired. I believe Lan meant that he could have met on more equal footing if he were not so tired - but that is a separate distinction from his earlier evaluation.  The main point was just that Lan wasn't at his best, and he knew he couldn't win without Sheathing the Sword whereas he may have been able to defeat Demandred without resorting to it if he were less tired - I don't think it disputes his earlier statement that he knew Demandred was a better swordsman. As a qualifier, it also isn't necessarily cut and dry because Lan thinks he is better. Even with Lan's expertise, I don't see how he could make such a call the first time they had fought for barely a few minutes. 

 

However, that is a matter of opinion, as the sentence can be taken either way. Personally, I am happy with both interpretations, but we won't know unless someone asks for clarification. 

 

 

Point being, I don't think anyone could say for certain who is the 'best'. Aside from that list given by Brandon and the earlier one by RJ, each of the contenders have various merits, flaws and different styles which cannot objectively be compared without going into the minutiae and assessing everyone's footwork, dexterity, strength, style, attitude, technique etc...

 

We can say who is likely to beat who - but who beats who doesn't necessarily denote greater skill. For all we know Demandred's style had the advantage over Galad's, but Galad may have been quicker, and more technically adept, but just had the wrong tactics to fight in that situation.  

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Barid got pretty much all of it but I'll answer anyway:

 

either way Lan beats Demandred and neither seem to have a massive advantage so think it is safe to assume Lan is the better.

 

That assumes that the better side always wins. And frankly I've seen the better side lose way to often to believe that.

 

Yeah Lan lived, Demandred died. End of.
As a way of keeping score, is there a better way to decide. The thread says best fighter, surely in a one on one duel the best is he who survives, regardless of skill.

 

Well, it's a bit hard to keep score when there's one match to the death. It's either 1-0 or 0-1 and there won't ever be another match, and that's putting aside the fact that Lan basically intended commit suicide for a chance at killing Demandred. Lan surviving is a miracle. If winning is all that determines who the better figther is, than Mat is the grand champions, because his luck won't ever let him lose a match. 

 

 

Doesn't seem to indicate that their physical condition is what's making Demandred a better swordsman, he just knows it instinctively. Their skill isn't diminished by their fatigue, just their ability to fully make use of that skill.
 
To me, the line you bolded just means that Lan feels that if he was fresh, he could beat Demandred, in spite of Demandred's superior skill, just like Galad defeated Valda, even though Valda was the better swordsman.
 
Also, although Demandred wasn't as tired as Lan, Taim's point of view a little earlier makes it clear that Demandred is actually somewhat drained by using a sangreal like Sakarnen for so long.


Not to make a big stink about it but I think it's pretty clear what Lan is relaying here and it's not what you have taken from it.
And it's not just about fatigue between the two of them, Lan is injured. Only his major wounds have been healed, he still has many minor wounds affecting him. Demy may also have some fatigue going on but he does not have any wounds slowing him down what so ever.

 

 

No problem.

 

If Lan had said that he knew Demandred had the advantage, or the upper hand or something of the sort then I would agree with you. But all he mentions is his ability as a swordsman, which he rates higher than his own. I guess it can be interpreted in different ways, but it's rather awkwardly put it's just fatigue that's making Demandred better.

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Surely the best is he who acheaved his goals.

The fact Lans had a death wish throughout the series and still survived TG says something.

Duels to the death are by definition one point matches , so one nils all the points he needs.

I recon Demandred was the most skilled fighter, but skilled isnt best, sometimes heart and the willingness to sacrifice all for victory decides whos best it did with Lan and Demandred, and at one nil Lan wins.

It reminds me of Rocky v Appollo.

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I feel Demandred-he was the best in AoL and then. Not sure if LT was that good but if so him then. Then Lan definitely. Rand I dunno, he's unbalanced especially after he lost his hand. Tam is good in my opinion. Most of the Aiel are good fighters. Mat is good but his luck could mean anything.

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Surely the best is he who acheaved his goals.

The fact Lans had a death wish throughout the series and still survived TG says something.

Duels to the death are by definition one point matches , so one nils all the points he needs.

I recon Demandred was the most skilled fighter, but skilled isnt best, sometimes heart and the willingness to sacrifice all for victory decides whos best it did with Lan and Demandred, and at one nil Lan wins.

It reminds me of Rocky v Appollo.

 

I can agree with the bold, even if "best" is, like Barid said, a very vague thing.

 

I feel Demandred-he was the best in AoL and then. Not sure if LT was that good but if so him then. Then Lan definitely. Rand I dunno, he's unbalanced especially after he lost his hand. Tam is good in my opinion. Most of the Aiel are good fighters. Mat is good but his luck could mean anything.

 

When Demandred kills Gawyn he says he's looking forward to a rematch with LTT, so presumably LTT was the best. Although there's also Bel'al who might have been just as good if not better. Rand before VoG wasn't quite as good as Lan according to RJ. After VoG, he shoud be just as good as LTT was, aside from the fact that he's missing a hand.

Edited by Master Ablar

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Surely the best is he who acheaved his goals.

The fact Lans had a death wish throughout the series and still survived TG says something.

Surely what it says is that Lan failed to achieve his goal?

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Surely the best is he who acheaved his goals.

The fact Lans had a death wish throughout the series and still survived TG says something.

Surely what it says is that Lan failed to achieve his goal?

Haha you crack me up.

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I seem to recall there being a fellow (Ryne Venamar, I think?) in New Spring who is more skilled than Lan.  Lan kills him too.  Being the one not dead on the ground at the end of the fight says a lot, in my book.

 

Another thing that I really like about Lan is that he's a good teacher too.  Rand, Mat, and Perrin all learned at least some of their skills from Lan.

 

However, I'd be very interested to see a matchup between Rhuarc and Lan...

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This might be slightly off topic, but...

 

What about including unarmed combat in these rankings?  How many times in science fiction does a combatant lose their weapon of choice in a duel/fight and have to go primal?  Heck, it happens to James Bond every mission!

 

So...we know the aiel could keep right on going, and ditto for Rand, what with the whole two dead warders in ten seconds bit.  Characters like Mat or Bridgett would be able to fall back on their knives.

 

I think it's interesting to note, that despite Lan being presented to us as death on a plate, we never see him fight barehanded.

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This might be slightly off topic, but...

 

What about including unarmed combat in these rankings?  How many times in science fiction does a combatant lose their weapon of choice in a duel/fight and have to go primal?  Heck, it happens to James Bond every mission!

 

So...we know the aiel could keep right on going, and ditto for Rand, what with the whole two dead warders in ten seconds bit.  Characters like Mat or Bridgett would be able to fall back on their knives.

 

I think it's interesting to note, that despite Lan being presented to us as death on a plate, we never see him fight barehanded.

 

He fights Child Byar bare-handed in Eye of the World when he rescues Perrin and Egwene from the Whitecloaks.

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Best is just so hard to define but if we split it up into some smaller components

 

1) Physical ability (strength speed reactions) personly I think perin or Rhuarc

 

2)Skill (technical form) personly I think Damandred

 

3) Instict (they just know what to do when) personly I think Lan or Mat (memorys)

 

4) Mindset (determination and hesitation) personly I think Lan

 

5) luck (Luck) I think it is safe to say Mat

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