Your Favorite Fighting Sequence(s) in Fiction

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RE: Blaxican
Yes, I am aware that there is a literature forum. I'd prefer this stay here though due to the higher traffic.

Question's pretty simple: What is the best fight scene that you've ever read in a work of fiction literature, science fiction or otherwise? The criteria for "best" is pretty vague, here. Most well-written, emotionally powerful, etc etc.

Feel free to list multiple scenes. shrug

King Castle
i always like the fight scene from undisputed 2

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probably shouldnt have posted it since the lil filipino male nurse might see it....

RE: Blaxican
Uh... that was my bad.

By fiction I was referring to literature, specifically. Wiiilll edit!

Symmetric Chaos
Kassad and Moneta in the Shrike suits during Fall of Hyperion. Total unrestrained brutality. Not a pretty scene, though, or a very elaborate one. It's like something from 300 but if the Spartans were tearing off limbs with their bare hands . . . and then had sex on top of the pile of corpses.

In retrospect it is the model I use for a lot of the fight scenese I write (sans sex) because when you remove the whole "unstoppable killing machine" aspect it gives a great feeling of desperation.

King Castle
from fiction literature? does comics count?

if so here:

Originally posted by ankur29
Psylocke#4
Logan vs. Psylocke (and intervening human torch like burning/fire guy called Jinn?)

Quote: “he is like a wall of rage, overwhelming me mentally and physically”


http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-008.jpg http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-009.jpg http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-010.jpg http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-011.jpg http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-012.jpg http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae289/ankur2292/th_Psylocke04-013.jpg

Omega Vision
The opening fight of the Watchmen Movie ranks pretty high on my list. Along with pretty much every fight from Jet Li's Fearless.

RE: Blaxican
Referring to.. regular, old fashioned, novels. no expression

No graphic novels sorry. stick out tongue

Omega Vision
Originally posted by RE: Blaxican
Referring to.. regular, old fashioned, novels. no expression

No graphic novels sorry. stick out tongue
Srry. Didn't read that post.

I suppose my favorite prose fight sequence would have to be the fight between Harry Dresden and the Skinwalker from the climax of the Dresden Files book Turn Coat.

King Castle
pfff..... fine.

miffed

i used to read some romance vampire novels with supernatural beings like dragon's, were beings, olympian gods etc etc.. but i cant remember the author nor name of the books..

they had some pretty great fight scenes of a human vamp fighting a olympian created avatar of death called thanatos the fight took place in a cabin while the vamp was trying to protect a blind woman..

he desperately tried to hold it off but thanatos was like a juggernaut and f#$3ed him up bad.. he ended up crawling back to the cabin and hid for a while till he healed up enough to escape taking the chick with him on a snow mobile till it gave out and he had to fight it one more time...

climax of the story they fought one was pure muscle the other was nimble and agile and finally manage to find its weakness in a tatoo marking placed by the gods the size of a cooin so it would never turn on them... he stabbed it with a knife if iirc correctly..

the hero was a tragic type guy... he was born in ancient greece hideous and deform.. a female god gave him immortality of a vampire but not actually a vampire since he was so ugle she didnt want to touch him to transform him and instead enchanted him making him a faux vampire..

as a vamp he is was godly beautiful but he never felt that way and the blind chick loved him for who he was so he fought really hard to keep her alive... he was desperate to be loved since he hid from the world b/c he always felt that he was ugly.. later another older vamp god who was once a slave like him but manage to drink from a god fought for his freedom and free him and discovered he never needed to drink blood or live in darkness it was running joke to the gods..

the dude after being freed from bondage turned on the goddess that had turned him but the blind chick didnt want him to kill her... the anguish of wanting revenge and wanting to be with the blind chick kept him from killing the goddess.

Rogue Jedi
The Crow, when Eric Draven confronts Top Dollar for the first time.

BruceSkywalker
one of my fave novels called The Ninja as well as its sequels

General_Iroh
The Black Angel, I think it was called, by John Connolly, had an epic part that was a flashback to an old abbey that had a battle between monks and demons going on in it, from what I remember it was pretty badass, though it's been ages since I've read it.

Ushgarak
Please do not post threads in the wrong place in future for such a reason. Little wonder no-one knew what you were talking about.

Bicnarok
Some of the action in the "rogue warrior" books by Richard Marcinko are excellent. Not the sort of book you want to read for intense literature value mindsmile

http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/x0/x4924.jpg

RE: Blaxican
Well... Ush.. would you like to give an opinion on the titular question of thread?

And anyone else, too... I would like if this didn't die like every other thread in this sub-forum. no expression

Bardock42
Originally posted by RE: Blaxican
Well... Ush.. would you like to give an opinion on the titular question of thread?

And anyone else, too... I would like if this didn't die like every other thread in this sub-forum. no expression

Or like one party in a fighting sequence.

Nephthys
There was this one book I read called Gladiatorix about female gladiator's (lesbian female gladiators), which had a pretty awesome end fight sequence. It was pretty much 2 naked chicks beating the absolute **** out of each other with their bare hands until they just collapsed from exhaustion and drew. Was pretty boss. I'll look for more though. See what I'll find.

Mindship
It's been a while since I read "The Reality Dysfunction," by Peter F. Hamilton. This (hard space-opera scifi with a supernatural element) novel held a number of fight scenes that were just really cool, due to an extensive/creative use of AI and nanotech, especially from a military perspective; and a good sense of how to depict tech-vs-'demon' battles in written form.

TheAuraAngel
The one scene in Ender's Game where Ender made everyone look pathetic compared to him.

So pretty much Ender's Game, it's all a war anyway.

Lord Shadow Z
For me I would suggest that swordfighting and the like are best done by David Gemmell or Simon R. Green (especially in the latter's Deathstalker books), or perhaps Mickey Zucker Reichert in 'The Last of the Renshai'.

But I can recall one such fistfight which I enjoyed from 'Ravenheart' by David Gemmell when the character Jaim Grymauch, a clansmen, enters a boxing tourney and it's pretty brutal how the fights go. There's also one in the First Chronicles of Druss the Legend, by the same author.

The only other book I can think of now is 'Tegne: Soul Warrior' by Richard la Plante (strong martial arts/spiritualist theme as well), but other than that it's difficult because in most stories H2H stuff only lasts briefly and is usually ended by some weapon.

Allankles
I've read a fair few books with decent fight scenes but none stick to mind. The ones that do stick to mind weren't decent fights but were brutal or tragic affairs. For instance in one book the protagonist is killed by the superhuman bad guy via getting his skull cracked by the bad guys bare hands. He achieves victory only by a psychic trap implanted into his brain when the already dying bad guy tries to possess his body, but realizing that he's tricked kills the hero and thus kills himself.

One fight that does stand out off the top of my head is the battle with the snow dragon Igjarjuk in the Dragon Born Chair. The way it ends was unforgettable, not because of how the last dragon in existence is killed but because of who kills it.

AfroMan
Originally posted by Omega Vision
Srry. Didn't read that post.

I suppose my favorite prose fight sequence would have to be the fight between Harry Dresden and the Skinwalker from the climax of the Dresden Files book Turn Coat.

Oh, that was epic, though Harry's destruction of Bianca's house in Grave peril was also pretty epic.

Dreampanther

chilled monkey
Excellent topic. This is very interesting.

Hmm... Off the top of my head, one of my favourites is the climactic duel between Galen Marek and Darth Vader in The Force Unleashed novel. It has great a description of both the action and what's going through Galen's head. I like it as it's Galen confronting the man who stole his childhood and made him into a weapon, and soundly defeating him.

Luke Skywalker vs. Brakiss in Jedi Under Siege is pretty good too. I think it strikes a good balance between showing Luke as a skilled, powerful Jedi but without making him look over-powered, or down-playing him so his opponent has a chance.

miiih
Don't remember the sequence as such, but yes I can tell you the most liked fiction character.Severus Snape from the Harry Potter series(: From book 1, I knew that there was more to his character than J.K. Rowling was letting on. I liked him then because he was different, and he seemed misunderstood, and I could relate to that. He became my absolute favorite character for forever in book 7, when his full story was revealed. I cried so hard when he died--I had to put down the book and collect myself before I could continue reading. Then when I read about his past with Lily, I felt for him on such an emotional level, I started bawling all over again. There are tear stains in my copy of Deathly Hallows.

I guess he's my favorite character overall because I've always felt like I could relate to him. People always judge me without knowing my full story, much like how I predicted it would be with Severus. When we learn of his heartbreak, love, pain, and sorrow, I felt like I could relate to him even more, because he seemed so real. The fact that he spent his years risking his life to protect the son of the woman he loved (and the man he hated) make his character eternal. His love is so devastatingly touching, even though he never got the happy ending he deserved.
1 year ago

Lord Shadow Z
Just read 'The Lion' by Nelson DeMille and it has excellent hand to hand fighting sequences as well as descriptive knife fighting. It is part of his John Corey series of books (the first is 'Plum Island'), which are highly enjoyable reads and he is probably my favourite DeMille character.

BoyScoutKevin
Favorite fighting sequence(s) . . .

For authors that can consistently churn out rousing action scenes, these are the best that I have found.

terry brooks
jack higgins (i.e. harry patterson)
damian hunter
dennis mckiernan
douglas niles
owen parry
kevin randle and robert cornett

Not as consistent, which does not make them a bad author, but they are not as consistent in writing rousing action scenes as the above, but, still, they have churned out at least one rousing action scene in the books they wrote.

len deighton
sir arthur conan doyle
cy endfield
c. walter hodges
robert e. howard
alistair maclean
chris pierson
marc rascovitch
barry sadler
rosemary sutcliffe
j. r. r. tolkien

And a couple of tips.

(1) I have found that men are better at writing action scenes than women.

(2) I look for authors that are some sort of ex-military. For whatever reason they seemingly write better action scenes than most civilians.

srankmissingnin
Any and all fights written by David Gemmel, specifically the throwdown between Skilgannon and the resurrected Decado in The Swords of Night and Day. Also any scene where Logan turns into the Bloody Nine in Joe Abercrombie's The First Law trilogy.

Lord Shadow Z
Originally posted by srankmissingnin
Any and all fights written by David Gemmel, specifically the throwdown between Skilgannon and the resurrected Decado in The Swords of Night and Day.

Skilgannon was an awesome character and I especially liked the 'button swords' he used. The problem (good problem), is that you can never really tell who was the best sword-fighter he created because they all are written as experts in their own time.

Certainly you would have to factor in:

Chareos the Blademaster (Quest for Lost Heroes)
Tarantio (Dark Moon)
Kysumu (Hero in the Shadows)
Bane (Midnight Falcon)
Tenaka Khan (The King From Beyond the Gate)

There were probably many others of course but those are the ones that have stayed with me as other great sword-fighters of his. If you are especially fond of sword fighting in books I would suggest 'The Last of the Renshai' by Mickey Zucker Reichert, which I find more descriptive with the actual sword skill and discipline.

Digi
R.A. Salvatore is known in the fantasy/sci-fi community for his intricately woven fight sequences, generally involving swordplay. I can't disagree, having read a lot within those genres. His most enduring creation wields dual scimitars, so there's fertile grounds for that sort of writing.

I've actually grown a bit tired of action in and of itself. I tend to gloss over the details of fights in novels and focus more on the dialogue, internal thoughts, and development exposition. Fights appeal to me that have personal meaning not just in unspoken subtext but explicit in the writing. Like, an artfully plotted sword technique is boring to me. A fighter imposing his will on a crowd, or having a metaphoric or spoken battle with the villain during the fight, is more immediate and forceful.

I relish in the hero/villain confrontation where their ideologies collide in thoughts, not necessarily in violence. The speeches before the fighting breaks out. Holmes/Moriarty, for a classic example. I like some of that in my fights.

siriuswriter
I'm going to have to put "The Princess Bride" on the list, for two action sequences.

1. The man in the black mask v Inigo Montoya on the top of the Cliffs of Insanity. Witty wordplay, suspense, humor - "You seem a decent man, I hate to kill you," "You seem a decent man; I would hate to die."
"You've been doing very well, my friend, but there is something you don't know." "What's that?" "I... am not left-handed"

2. And of course, the epicly epic Count Rugen v. Inigo Montoya. "Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
"Offer me gold." "YES!" "Jewels." "OF COURSE! You shall live like a prince!"
"I want my father back, you son-of-a-*****!" *slays*

Digi
Agreed sirius. Those kicked ass.

siriuswriter
Oh, and I forgot the "Battle of Wits" with Vizzini, and the iocane powder.
"The most important rule of war, after 'Never go in a land war against Asia, is to never trust a Sicilian when death is on the line! A-Hahaha! A-hahaha! A-Ha....!" *falls over dead.*

Lord Shadow Z
Originally posted by Digi
R.A. Salvatore is known in the fantasy/sci-fi community for his intricately woven fight sequences, generally involving swordplay. I can't disagree, having read a lot within those genres. His most enduring creation wields dual scimitars, so there's fertile grounds for that sort of writing.

I've actually grown a bit tired of action in and of itself. I tend to gloss over the details of fights in novels and focus more on the dialogue, internal thoughts, and development exposition. Fights appeal to me that have personal meaning not just in unspoken subtext but explicit in the writing. Like, an artfully plotted sword technique is boring to me. A fighter imposing his will on a crowd, or having a metaphoric or spoken battle with the villain during the fight, is more immediate and forceful.

I relish in the hero/villain confrontation where their ideologies collide in thoughts, not necessarily in violence. The speeches before the fighting breaks out. Holmes/Moriarty, for a classic example. I like some of that in my fights.

I haven't read any R.A. Salvatore books but I've definitely heard of the author. I agree to some extent with your opinion about action in books, some of it is just for the spectacle, but I think that it does in some way go towards a purpose - as well as defining a character. Gemmell for instance has used specific and different weapons almost to add variety to the characterisation of his characters. You have Druss the Legend with his axe 'Snaga', Skilgannon with 'The Swords of Night and Day', Waylander the Assassin with his ebony crossbow etc.

I do still like a good fantasy story without the action, but the author has to be able to provide some wonder or excitement that somewhat fills in the gap, because a story without any consequences or danger just becomes average. Doesn't have to be related to fighting, it could be a disaster about to happen, an amazing/frightening discovery, or just an imaginative adventure with likeable characters. I remember reading 'The Dark Moon' by Julia Gray last year and it was amazing and didn't rely on action because the story and characters were just captivating.

Digi
Well, a lot of Salvatore's characters happen to dual wield, but he throws enough variety into it to work. It was indeed fascinating to really think through a couple of his more elaborate sequences. He allowed himself some creativity in his last creation as well...she wields a staff that can break into 2 or 4 pieces, with flails extending on the ends, giving her multiple configurations in any fight. But usually I just sort of read for general meaning during the fights, following the flow of the battle but not individual sword thrusts.

I agree with your point, though. My tastes have started to lean more toward intellectual thrillers than straight action in movies and TV, and I suppose my reading preferences are following suit to an extent. Still, I enjoy Drizzt...I suppose at this point it's mostly just escapist pleasure, though it was once more (when I was younger), and he does hit some really great set pieces occasionally with his action.

NemeBro
Magnus the Red vs. Leman Russ and the Space Wolves Legion from Graham McNeil's Warhammer 40,000 novel A Thousand Sons. **** you I am too tired to explain why Blax. estahuh

Ascendancy
Most of the battle/fight scenes in Robert Jordan's books are great and properly detailed.

I hate what it devolved into, but a lot of fights in Goodkind's series were good as well as far as level of description.

For purely fighting sequences I think I still have to say Ludlum's Bourne trilogy as well as some of his stand-alone novels.

Tzeentch._
Holy shit, this thread is amazing.

NemeBro
why

Ascendancy
1) The majority of the "one-on-one" battles in Jordan's Wheel of Time with Al Thor fighting the Forsaken. Those were always well done.

2) The hand-to-hand scenes from the original Bourne Trilogy by Ludlum.

3) The fights in the Duelist series of novels.

4) The weirding fights from Dune.

5) The saber combat from a number of Star Wars novels.

maham
Don't think I've read any that I liked yet.

Dolos
bpLtXIlkyYA


This was Achilles finest display. Forget killing a giant, forget defeating Hector, when an entire beach contigent with archers and horsemen and soldiers cannot stop ONE man, it's over.

Dolos
Paul Muad'dib Vs Feyd Rautha. cool

Tzeentch._
The scene has to be in a book.

Allankles
I always like the David and Goliath fights, the hero of the, In The Hall of the Dragon Kings two fights.

1) His fight with a creeping giant dragon/serpent-like creature

2) His fight with the warlock villain
Read them as a kid, still remember how real they were written. Trust me most dragon /big bad vs plucky hero fights aren't as real as these two.

bluewaterrider
Originally posted by Oneness



This was Achilles finest display. Forget killing a giant, forget defeating Hector, when an entire beach contigent with archers and horsemen and soldiers cannot stop ONE man, it's over.




Homer's actual Iliad was full of such displays, which are formally called aristeias.

In fact, Hector himself, defender of the Trojan army, is cast in that role for something like a quarter of the book, with all the Greek kings and army trying to figure out how to stop him and the crushing counterattack he makes in Achilles' absence.

Amazingly, this happens even as the major Greek kings themselves make similar mini displays throughout the book, even to driving Hector off for an afternoon.

One of Iliad's better known translators, Richard Lattimore, even points this out in a preview summary for his edition of the work,
how the format of an epic poem telling of an engagement that occurs over a series of days or even weeks, allows every member of the Greek army to shine, even though, ultimately, all of them together cannot save the fleet from Hector; you can drive him off or even beat him on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, if you encounter him, you'd best just pray to make it to the night ...

maxivitopowe
edit

DarkestSonata
Harry potter vs voldemort... Oh wait. Maybe Eragon vs Galbatorix...nevermind, lol.

In all seriousness, I second Joe Abercrombie and RA Salvatore, for different reasons. Abercrombie's fight scenes are visceral and brutal, and he almost always delivers.(Gorst vs Whirrun of Bligh, anyone?) while Salvatore's are intelligent and incredibly smooth.

And for an original addition to this topic, the ending sequences of Devouring Darkness and Growing Chaos by Bradley Counter, are both excellent. While he's a new author, his first book is free on smashwords and amazon, so you can't go wrong giving it a read, and you won't be disappointed.

NemeBro
Originally posted by bluewaterrider
Homer's actual Iliad was full of such displays, which are formally called aristeias.

In fact, Hector himself, defender of the Trojan army, is cast in that role for something like a quarter of the book, with all the Greek kings and army trying to figure out how to stop him and the crushing counterattack he makes in Achilles' absence.

Amazingly, this happens even as the major Greek kings themselves make similar mini displays throughout the book, even to driving Hector off for an afternoon.

One of Iliad's better known translators, Richard Lattimore, even points this out in a preview summary for his edition of the work,
how the format of an epic poem telling of an engagement that occurs over a series of days or even weeks, allows every member of the Greek army to shine, even though, ultimately, all of them together cannot save the fleet from Hector; you can drive him off or even beat him on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, if you encounter him, you'd best just pray to make it to the night ...

Ajax beat the shit out of Hector though.

wuleecat
Neal Asher's books have some great fight scenes between awesome androids and really horrible monsters. In 'Gridlinked' there is an android called Mr Crane who is a Series 19 , and he spends a lot of the first half of the book ripping apart various characters. Until he runs into a pair of androids who are a few upgrades ahead of him, and they beat him into scrap. In the final book of the series (Line War?) Crane is back, teamed up with a spider-like war drone and a super agent called Cormac who is armed with a deadly, intelligent shuriken throwing star. The three of them break into the most strongly-defended place on Earth and all hell breaks loose.
It's not exactly Dostoevsky, but Asher does big fight scenes brilliantly.

Back on Earth, there is a superb fight scene in Lee Child's book The Persuader where Jack Reacher takes on a hulking brute hand-to-hand, and the results are grim.

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