War is yet to happen in House of the Dragon, but we do know that it is going to happen in season 2, especially after Prince Aemond killed Prince Lucerys in the final episode of the first season. That means that both sides are in need of capable fighters, and we’ve already seen a few of them during the first ten episodes of what is set to be a long series.
In that regard, when war is finally going to happen in the series, there will be fighters that will eventually take their swords up and participate in numerous battles that will define one of the most important eras in the history of the Seven Kingdoms. Of course, both the Blacks and the Greens have their fair share of strong fighters. As such, we are here to rank the strongest fighters we’ve seen in House of the Dragon so far.
10. Qarl Correy
Ser Qarl Correy was introduced in episode 6 as the rumored lover of Ser Laenor Velaryon, as they were always together to enjoy drinks and share war stories. Of course, the fact that Laenor favors his company means that he isn’t only a good-looking man but is also a really good fighter, as he was able to work his way up to the status of a knight in his exploits in the Stepstones.
There is also the fact that everyone in the Seven Kingdoms (except for a few) believes that Qarl Correy was good enough to have defeated Laenor Velaryon in a fair fight during Laenor’s fake death scene in episode 7. As such, it is possible that they know what Qarl is capable of and that he might have actually been good enough to defeat Laenor in a sword fight.
9. Erryk and Arryk Cargyll
The twins, Erryk and Arryk, are known to be quite capable when it comes to their fighting abilities, as they were able to get into the Kingsguard as a duo. That means that they are both just as good as each other in a fight. And the fact that Erryk was given the task of guarding Aegon means that he is a good fighter.
We also saw how good Arryk was when he fought Ser Criston in a fight for the right to bring Aegon back to King’s Landing. However, Arryk isn’t good enough to defeat Criston, and that means that he isn’t as good as Cole. But the fact that both of these Cargyll knights were able to get into the Kingsguard is proof enough of their skills as fighters.
8. King Aegon II Targaryen
King Aegon II Targaryen was never really known for his skills as a fighter, both in the series and in the book. But it does seem like he is a better fighter in the series, as he trained with Ser Criston Cole. The only problem was that he would rather drink and whore his way through his days instead of training. In that regard, he isn’t as good as his younger brother in terms of his fighting skills.
Nevertheless, the fact that he was able to manhandle Jacaerys during the dinner scene in episode 8 means that he still is capable enough as a fighter. Of course, he wields the Valyrian Steel sword Blackfyre and is the rider of Sunfyre, who is a capable dragon in its own right. So, while he isn’t the best swordsman, he has a strong sword and a powerful dragon on his side.
7. Harold Westerling
We don’t know if it’s out of respect or if it’s fear that makes Ser Criston Cole reluctant to fight Ser Harrold Westerling, who has been the only person to ever police him whenever he acts out of line. There were numerous times when Harrold actually scolded or gave Criston the eye, and Ser Cole simply didn’t even try to argue with the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard.
The fact that Harrold Westerling is the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard and is still quite formidable-looking at his advanced age makes him a capable fighter who can probably stand up against any other fighter in the Seven Kingdoms. We haven’t seen him in combat, but we know for a fact that he is the most loyal and honorable knight we’ve seen in the series so far.
6. Corlys Velaryon
While he was always better known for his exploits as the greatest sailor in the world and the greatest commander of fleets the Seven Kingdoms has ever seen, Corlys Velaryon is also a capable fighter that has fought in numerous wars throughout his lifetime. We saw him performing well in the War for the Stepstones during the earlier episodes, as he showed his ferocity in battle when he was cutting down Triarchy soldiers one by one.
The fact that Corlys is one of the most experienced fighters in the series makes him one of the strongest as well. He is one of the few fighters to have actually fought in a real war, as most of the other fighters have only fought in tournaments and duels. In that regard, Corlys’s experience and natural leadership make him one of the most formidable fighters in House of the Dragon.
5. Criston Cole
There is no doubt that Ser Criston Cole is an extremely skilled fighter that knows a thing or two about using his powerful morningstar in battle. While most of the other fighters on this list prefer using swords, Criston is skilled at using an entirely different weapon that is usually reserved for brutes but is actually quite graceful when used by the new Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. Of course, Cole also displayed his skills with a sword in a few of his fights in the series.
The greatest feat that Criston Cole has ever accomplished as a fighter was defeating Daemon Targaryen in the tournament to celebrate the birth of King Viserys’s son during the first episode of House of the Dragon. He was able to counter Daemon’s stronger weapon by making use of a weapon that the Targaryen prince probably wasn’t used to facing. Of course, Criston is also responsible for training both Aegon II and Aemond.
4. Harwin Strong
We never saw Ser Harwin Strong in a real fight during the events of House of the Dragon, but he was widely regarded as the strongest knight in all of the Seven Kingdoms during the time that he was alive. He is an imposing man whose physical strength probably had no equal during this era, and that was probably the reason why no one dared to face him in a fight.
The only time we ever saw Harwin Strong in action was when he fought his way through the mob during the betrothal banquet for Rhaenyra and Laenor. He easily muscled his way through numerous people and then proceeded to carry Rhaenyra on his shoulder with such ease. In that regard, we know how strong he is. It’s just a shame that we never saw him fighting in the series.
3. Laenor Velaryon
Known as an honorable knight and a good man that loved adventuring with his fellow knights, Laenor Velaryon was an experienced fighter because he fought in the War for the Stepstones at an early age and had already experienced what it was like to be in a real fight. As such, he already has the experience that some of the other characters on this list don’t have. And it is possible that he also spent years fighting in different battles as a knight while living in Essos after he faked his death.
While Laenor Velaryon probably wasn’t the best swordsman in the series, we know for a fact that he was able to showcase his skills as a dragonrider during the War for the Stepstones. He was masterful in his command over Seasmoke because he burned his way through the Triarchy soldiers with such ease. As such, we know what he is capable of in a fight.
2. Aemond Targaryen
Arguably the greatest asset on the side of the Greens, Aemond Targaryen trained so hard in the art of swordsmanship that he eventually became good enough to defeat Criston Cole in a sparring match despite the fact that he only had one good eye. The fact that he is nimble when it comes to his movements and is quite skilled in knowing how to handle a sword made it seem like he was dancing during his match with his mentor. In that regard, he was able to do something that not even Daemon was able to do—defeat Criston Cole.
Of course, another aspect that makes Aemond Targaryen one of the best fighters in the series is the fact that he is the one riding the strongest and biggest dragon in the known world. Vhagar is a force to be reckoned with and is only going to become more dangerous in a true war when used by someone like Aemond.
1. Daemon Targaryen
Aside from the fact that he lost a fight to Ser Criston Cole in the first episode, Daemon Targaryen’s record as a fighter has been spotless. His experiences in the Stepstones only served to make him much more skilled as a fighter and a military commander, and that means that he is quite possibly a lot stronger right now than he was back in the first episode. And the fact that he is known as an extremely skilled swordsman was never lost on Aemond, who hesitated to challenge his uncle back in episode 8.
Daemon Targaryen also wields Dark Sister, which is an incredibly strong Valyrian Steel sword that was able to cut cleanly through Vaemond Velaryon’s head in episode 8. Of course, while Caraxes is far from being the strongest and biggest dragon in the series, Daemon’s bond and experience with the Blood Wyrm make him the most dangerous fighter in the entire House of the Dragon series.