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-> ''More than 60 million soldiers fought in "The War to End All Wars." \\
It ended nothing, yet it changed the world forever.''
-->--''{{VideoGame/Battlefield 1}},'' '''Opening narration'''

Any war described in universe as being final, whether or not it actually is. [[RuleOfDrama It usually isn't]]. May come under different names, but they are all clearly intended to end the current conflict and prevent future conflict in one fell swoop.

The TropeNamer was UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, as noted in the RealLife section. [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarII Which wasn't]], so they called it World War I instead.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* One of these is a major part of the backstory in ''Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann''; it ended with humankind forced to live underground [[WellIntentionedExtremist in a misguided attempt to save it]] [[ScaryDogmaticAliens from the Anti-Spiral.]] [[spoiler: A more literal example takes place during the course of the series, in which humanity [[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu fights back against the Anti-Spiral and defeats it]], and the newly-liberated civilizations of the universe join with humanity in peace.]]
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'':
** It seems Nagato's plan was [[spoiler: to create a weapon so powerful it could (and would) destroy an entire country in a single attack. [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything Thus ending all wars out of fear of the weapon's use]] and [[WellIntentionedExtremist ushering in an era of true peace]]. Of course, he's also cynical/realistic enough to expect that this won't really last as people begin to forget how terrifying the weapon is, war will flare up again, and the weapon will be used to enforce peace, over and overů]]
** Tobi's plan, [[spoiler: he started the next "world war" with the goal of trapping the entire world in a LotusEaterMachine of world peace and dead loved ones brought back to life]].
* What Treize and Zechs brought about in ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing,'' and it worked...for a year.
* This is Lord Ezelcant's plan in ''Anime/MobileSuitGundmanAGE''.
* The war of Zaibach vs. everyone in ''Anime/VisionOfEscaflowne'' is meant to end all war by securing for [[MadScientist Dornkirk]] certain {{macguffin}}s necessary to build a machine that will grant everyone on the planet their deepest desires. Unfortunately, it turns out that some people ''really'' desire war.
* In ''LightNovel/CrestOfTheStars'', the Abh have declared that should they win the galaxy-spanning war the series depicts, it will be the ''last'' war humanity ever fights... at least with itself. Because if the Abh win, the entire human race will be unified under their government, which admittedly has done a pretty good job maintaining peace within its borders for nearly a thousand years. As the series continues, it remains to be seen who will eventually win the war.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''ComicBook/FinalCrisis'' ends with the resolution of what is meant to be a final war, but if ''ComicBook/{{Flashpoint}}'' is any indication, the Crisis events will function as they did before, but won't have Crisis in the title.

* Frank Herbert's ''Franchise/{{Dune}}'' series. ''Literature/ChildrenOfDune'' mentions Kralizec: in the oldest Fremen beliefs it is the Typhoon Struggle, the war at the end of the universe.
* ''Literature/HonorHarrington'':
** The Final War, and as far as the planet Earth is concerned it really was final. For human colonized space, not so much.
** The war between Manticore and Haven was initially supposed to be this, too. Time and again, Creator/DavidWeber reminded us that the only possible outcomes are either the end of the Star Kingdom of Manticore, or the end of the People's Republic of Haven. In the end that was technically true, as [[ExactWords Haven dropped the "People's]]."
* ''Literature/TheLastBattle'' in ''Literature/TheChroniclesOfNarnia'' ends with the destruction of all Narnia. The goodies get their happy ending in "True Narnia", a thinly-disguised version of Heaven after the Apocalypse.
* ''Literature/TheProphecyOfTheStones'' seems to be leading up to a FinalWar but the ending reminds us that evil cannot be permanently defeated.
* In MarkSGeston's novel ''Out of the Mouth of the Dragon'' armies are constantly battling to determine whether good or evil will ultimately triumph. To everybody's dismay, however, none of the battles are ever final or decisive, and the world ends with a protracted whimper.
* The Nine Years War in ''Literature/BraveNewWorld'', which happened approximately 500 years before the novel sets.
* The war between the [[TheEmpire the Draka]] and the [[TheAlliance Alliance for Democracy]] in S.M. Stirling's [[Literature/TheDraka The Stone Dogs]] is called "The Final War", as afterwards there is no power left on Earth capable of challenging Drakan dominance. From the ashes of the Final War emerges the ''Final Society'', as the Draka genetically engineer themselves and their serfs into two codependent post-human races. Afterwards, the Draka still find themselves in conflict with the descendants of defeated Americans who fled the Solar System to found a colony on Alpha Centauri.
* In Creator/KeithLaumer's Literature/{{Bolo}} series, the FinalWar really is. Both interstellar empires are annihilated, each [[ApocalypseHow/{{Class 6}} sterilizing]] all known worlds of the other. The few overlooked colonies have neither the desire nor the ability to keep fighting.
* The "Autumn Rain" trilogy by David J. Williams culminates in WW III, with weaponized space. The nuclear destruction of a continent takes roughly three paragraphs of writing, and perhaps a few hours. Most of the Earth is more or less saturated with nuclear weapons, space-dropped kinetic energy weapons, high powered directed energy pin-point strikes against anything trying to shoot down those weapons, and deliberate destruction of any and all communications and electronic infrastructure either physically or through hacking. The fate of the moon and the fleets stationed at the libation points is not much better...though it takes a few days for them.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* In ''Series/{{MASH}}'', Colonel Potter at one point bitterly toasts the last of his friends to die with the toast ' Here's to you, boys. To Ryan, who died in WWI: the War to End All Wars. To Gianelli, who died in the war after that.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Franchise/IndependenceDay'': the War of 1996 is this, as the following time-line goes into an alternate 20 years where the world avoids any major war or genocide, after avoiding extinction from an invading alien race. Only the aliens' return sparks a new war, [[Film/IndependenceDayResurgence the War of 2016.]]
* ''Film/WonderWoman2017'' has Steve Trevor drop the trope name when telling the Amazons about the TropeNamer. Diana/Wonder Woman sets out with him to make the name true, but finds out that humanity is far too complicated and aggressive to halt all war simply by ending one conflict.

[[folder:Myths & Religion]]
* Ragnarok was expected by the Myth/{{Norse|Mythology}} to be the final battle between the gods and their opponents (the giants, Fenrir, etc.)
* The End Time/End Times/End of Days of Christianity.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''Creator/TomClancy's VideoGame/EndWar'', true to its name has this going for it.
* ''VideoGame/Battlefield1'', which takes place during the TropeNamer period, even lampshades the ironic nature of its name in the opening narration, used as the quote above.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* UsefulNotes/WorldWarI was said to be this by some. The phrase was originally coined by Creator/HGWells as early as August 1914 in a series of newspaper articles that were collected into the brochure ''The War That Will End War''. It then became "The War to End War" and "The War to End All Wars" and later became associated with UsefulNotes/WoodrowWilson, who actually only used it once in a speech. But some soon took a more cynical point of view. The future Field Marshal Earl Wavell commented about the 1919 Peace Conference: "After the 'war to end war', they seem to have been in Paris at making the 'Peace to end Peace'", a sentiment that was also echoed by the exiled Kaiser in the Netherlands.
* In Soviet culture, UsefulNotes/WW2 was often referred to as "the war against war itself" or "a war to be never repeated".
* There has been one war between the Great Powers since UsefulNotes/WorldWarII -- or, more accurately between a Superpower and a Great Power. The UsefulNotes/KoreanWar pitted primarily American forces[[note]]small contingents of soldiers from many other nations, including the Great Powers of France and Britain[[/note]] against the newly formed People's Republic of China. By the end, 40,000 UN[[note]]mostly American[[/note]] and 400,000 Chinese soldiers were dead- as well as millions of Korean soldiers and civilians from both sides[[note]]but, of course, neither North nor South Korea were Great Powers[[/note]]. Notably though, this took place entirely on the Korean Peninsula, so although the soldiers were from all over the world, the conflict was not. This is subverted by InsistentTerminology in case of the Korean War. It was not a " war," but "police action," United States and its allies fought in it only as part of the United Nations force, [[BlatantLies Russian pilots simply did not fight in this war at all, and all Chinese soldiers were technically "volunteers."]] In fact, adding the fact that neither Korea saw the other as a legitimate entity, [[MindScrew no "country" fought in Korea at all]], to paraphrase Russian scholar Andrei Lankov.