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15 Best Lightsaber Duels in Star Wars, Ranked from Worst to Best

15 Best Lightsaber Duels in Star Wars, Ranked from Worst to Best

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Star Wars has been with us for nearly five decades, contributing significantly to igniting our imagination with tales of the Force, Jedi Knights, and fearsome Sith lords. But amidst their enduring clashes, roaring starships, and epic lightsaber duels, one thing is the supreme element of this galactic world: the lightsabers.

However, the true power of the lightsaber lies not in its elegance but in the clash. The flashing glow of the blades, the hum sounds, the heart-pounding skirmish moments, and the nail-biting climax are all the centrepieces of the lightsaber battles in Star Wars. 

With so many exhilarating space battles throughout the saga, the tendency to know who had the best fight of all time remains unaffected. Let’s find out who among the powerful force users had the iconic and memorable battles that still give goosebumps.

Here, we have listed the 15 most intense battles, ranked from worst to best in Star Wars lore.

 

15. Finn Vs. Stormtrooper

 

 

The Escape from Jakku

Star Wars: Episode VII—The Force Awakens (2015)


The teaser for The Force Awakens created huge excitement with its intense scenes of Finn and the stormtroopers, raising fans' expectations. However, the actual fight didn't match the thrill of the preview. 

There were better lightsaber battle scenes in the prequels that arguably established a higher benchmark for further fight scenes. 

Finn's short clash with a stormtrooper armed with a riot control baton was tense and had a great sound design, but it ultimately fell short of the promised excitement. 

 

14. Kylo Ren Vs. Finn And Rey 

 

 

The Underrated Power of Sound in the Force Awakens' Duel

Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens (2015)


Finn, Rey, and Kylo Ren throw a showdown in the snowy forest of Starkiller Base. However, the fight scene between them, with Kylo outmatching Finn bravely, isn’t really amazing, as the trailer depicted. 

Despite the potential, their encounter fell short of the exhilarating lightsaber battles that defined the prequel trilogy. Even the actor who played Finn criticises the characters, saying they aren’t well trained.

 

13. Kylo Ren Vs. Luke Skywalker

 

 

The Last Jedi’s confrontation between Luke Skywalker and Kylo Ren

Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi (2017)


It’s a subject of great debate among fans whether the lightsaber duel between Kylo Ren and Luke Skywalker is even considered a fight. Unlike most other intense duelling battles, the fight between the two in The Last Jedi lacks physicality, making this scene the most petite favourite. 

Their duel ends with an unexpected twist, in which Luke disappears before Kylo can strike him. This lowers the viewer's expectations, as it feels like an anti-climax to those looking for a definitive and dramatic plot.

 

12. Obi-Wan Kenobi Vs. General Grievous

 

 

Kenobi’s final meeting with a weapon-body creature

Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005)


We seemingly have a lot of skirmishes in the Revenge of the Sith, but the battle between Obi-Wan Kenobi and General Grievous doesn’t seem like a significant showdown. However, it’s cool to enjoy because of the mind-blowing visual appeal. 

The battle is truly ordinary. With a little effort, Kenobi cuts down two of Greivous’ hands. And before Wan can finish, the Clone army attacks him, and Grievous manages to escape. 

General Grievous's chemistry is more interesting than his actual duels. The concept of collecting lightsabers from fallen opponents distinguishes him from other characters. Although his appearance makes him seem like a powerful droid in the viewers' eyes, he isn't as formidable as he looks.

 

11. Final Encounter Between Obi-Wan Kenobi And Darth Maul

 

 

The Final Encounter 

Star Wars Rebels: "Twin Suns" (Season 3, Episode 20)


Kenobi has his first confrontation with Maul, in which he loses his master, Qui-Gon Jinn. And it was a point that filled Kenobi with a burning desire for revenge against the Sith. Both make a final confrontation on Tatooine in which we witness Maul die in Kenobi’s arms. 

“Twin Suns” is an indeed outstanding episode with subtle fighting scenes and minimal choreography. The conversation between the two about Luke takes the viewers on an emotional rollercoaster. It airs a poignant moment in favour of Maul, who had a tragic story since childhood, finally finding peace in his death.

 

10. Rey Vs. Kylo Ren

 

 

Rey Skywalker against Kylo Ren on Death Star II wreckage

Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (2019)


Rey Skywalker and Kylo Ren engage in several lightsaber duels throughout the Star Wars sequel trilogy, each taking place in a unique location.

Their first encounter occurs in a snowy forest on the planet Starkiller Base in Star Wars: Episode VII—The Force Awakens (2015). This movie features an iconic moment worth watching where Luke’s lightsaber flies into Rey’s hand past Kylo. 

While the visually stunning lightsaber battles between Rey and Kylo Ren are a trilogy highlight, the fact that a newcomer to the Force defeats a well-trained Kylo immensely stunned the fans.

Another scene worth engrossing is when the two have their final confrontation on the ruins of the second Death Star. For various reasons, this clash holds immense significance as it serves as the closing chapter of the Skywalker saga. This fight's breathtaking visuals and dramatic context make it a standout moment in the series.

 

9. Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi Vs. Count Dooku

 

 

The iconic collision

Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005)

Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002)


Arguably, Count Dooku is the best part of Attack of the Clones. How? The actor Christopher Lee, who portrayed Dooku, was 80 years old and still perfectly pictured his role as a Sith. 

What makes their fighting scene the best is the fact that the old Sith was extremely skilled with his lightsaber and so powerful that he easily schooled both the Jedi warrior Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker

Even when Anakin seems to use two lightsabers against Dooku, he badly loses to him with a cut on his hand. The two-on-one collisions occur not once but twice in the entire Star Wars lore, leaving the viewer biting nails over the distressing climax. 

 

8. Master Yoda Vs. Palpatine

 

 

Two powerful masters face off.

Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005)


The duel scene between one of the deadliest masters of the Sith and one of the wisest masters of Jedi was extremely up to the mark, worth taking viewers on the seat’s edge. Who will rise above the ashes?

Ultimately, Yoda loses the battle against Palpatine and escapes upon realising he’s a bit too old to face off against his foe. However, their duel can be considered one of the best Star Wars fighting scenes for various reasons. 

The lightsaber swings, Yoda’s flip, Plapatine’s manoeuvres, special effects, and ultimately, both the master’s skills truly speak for themselves and bring the scene into serious consideration. 

 

7. Anakin Skywalker Vs. Ahsoka Tano

 

 

A master and apprentice against each other.

Star Wars: Ahsoka – "Shadow Warrior" (Season 1, Episode 5)


Ahsoka and Anakin shared a deep bond as a master and apprentice. However, they had a lot of emotionally charged duels in the Star Wars Rebels, and the fight witnessed in Twilight of the Apprenticecan particularly be claimed as one of the best lightsaber duels. 

In the highly acclaimed Star Wars series starring Ahsoka, she finally has a live-action encounter with her former master, during which we see Anakin pledges to teach Ahsoka a final lesson. 

This set a high bar for the unfolding story of Ahsoka, her corrupted master, and the ultimate destination of their fated fight.

 

6. Darth Maul And Savage Opress Vs. Darth Sidious

 

 

The execution of the rule of two

Star Wars: The Clone Wars - "The Lawless" (Season 5, Episode 16)


Another epic duel scene is recorded between the extremely ferocious Sith lord Darth Sidious and his apprentice Darth Maul. After losing to Kenobi and being cut in half, Maul is supported by his brother Savage Opress. 

As Maul restored his power, he conquered the Mandalorian, taking his throne back with the Darksaber. It truly vexes Palpatine. However, Palpatine found another apprentice with whom he could rule over the galaxy. It was Anakin Skywalker who Palpatine was flattering and deviating from his path. 

To obey the rule of the two, Palpatine has to face Maul, who confronted him along with his brother Opress. This battle certainly left fans in awe, pondering who between the two would take the lead. 

 

5. Luke Skywalker Vs. Darth Vader

 

 

The great clash between the father and son  

Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)


The long-awaited brawl finally docks when Luke stands face-to-face with his father in a shadowy cave on Dagobah. It’s the climax we all have waited eagerly for, haven’t we?

Though trained as a Jedi, Luke emerges as one of the powerful warriors who seems ready with all his strength to fight back Vader. However, it’s a no-brainer that the power was in Vader’s hand, who was sure to win. 

However, their duel doesn’t rank in the first place because it is not as impressive as it could have been. Their dramatically wild lightsaber swings revealed it all. 

 

4. Anakin Skywalker Vs. Obi-Wan Kenobi

 

 

The Battle on Mustafar

Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge Of The Sith (2005)


Anakin’s insecurities drive another great duel worth ranking among the top battles with a jaw-dropping twist in the universe's history. 

One of the epic battles of the Star Wars franchise is recorded when Anakin turns to the dark side, fights with his best friend, and leaves fans in great surprise as well as a burst of emotions. 

The battles took place on the volcanic planet Mustafar, and the two had the longest battles backed by outstanding choreography in the entire franchise. Eventually, Kenobi wins the battle, leaving Anakin to completely descend to the Sith side.  

 

3. Mace Windu Vs. Darth Sidious

 

 

The Revenge of the Sith lord Darth Sidious

Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005)


I wonder if there’s any duelling scene in the Star Wars universe that would have surpassed the sheer dread, bringing the viewers to the edge of their seats. Certainly, we all wait for the leading characters to dominate the scene. 

The last movie of the Star Wars prequels had a lot of lightsaber duelling scenes, and the one between expert swordsman Mace Windu and Darth Sidious has taken many votes to rank as the best Star Wars lightsaber fight. 

The scene falls when the overconfident Mace and his fellows enter Sidious’s office to arrest him. The lords of the Sith lord effortlessly struck down the fellows, but Mace, who could have perhaps defeated Palpatine if Anakin had stayed out of the scene.

 

2. Master Yoda Vs. Count Dooku

 

 

The Magic of Yoda’s unmatchable speed 

Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002)


The second most intense battle recorded is in the Attack of the Clones. The two expert Jedi, Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi, easily get down on their knees when they encounter a new Sith lord, Count Dooku, who is a former Jedi. 

When Master Yoda comes down to action, picking up his lightsaber for the first time, the scene is undeniably an awesome moment for Star Wars fans. However, it was hilarious to initially judge the Jedi master’s fancy flips and yell sounds. 

But what makes this scene so goosebumps-worthy is Yoda pulling out his lightsaber like a real master, ready to teach the wicked Sith. It was a relieving moment to watch the malevolent master lose and escape from the light side Force user’s speed and agility.

Thankfully, Star Wars has done so much better with Yoda’s Force abilities and lightsaber skills in its further movies. 

 

1. Darth Maul Vs. Qui-Gon Jinn & Obi-Wan Kenobi

 

 

The Daul of the Fates

Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999)


Many consider The Phantom Menace a flawed film compared to later entries in the Star Wars saga. However, one element stands out and challenges this perception: the movie's final lightsaber duel, "Duel of the Fates."

Star Wars had its first-ever duel with three iconic characters, Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi against Darth Maul, which took place on Tatooine. It’s the battle that captured the brutal demise of Jin. However, Kenobi ultimately defeats Sith in a 15-minute two-on-one battle set within the heart of the Naboo Palace control room. 

The battle filled with adrenaline-pumping choreography, fast-paced action and Maul igniting his breathtaking double-bladed lightsabers is enough to easily rank it as one of the greatest lightsaber battles ever in Star Wars between extremely skilled masters of both the alliances. 

Ah! That’s all we had for the greatest lightsaber duel in the Space franchise. Let us know which one you genuinely think ranks at the top position. 

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