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Midfight Weapon Exchange

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Two characters are fighting against or with each other in a battle, and occasionally they find themselves swapping their weapons with each other. The reasons for this vary.

If enemies:

  • The battle is so fierce they knock each other's weapons out of their hands and have to use the other's weapon to continue fighting.
  • To make a challenge of using each other's weapons, especially if they're not familiar with each other's weapons.
  • They face a common foe, essentially making it an Enemy Mine situation.

If allies:

  • Because one is in a situation which the other's weapon is better suited for. May be part of Confusion Fu, especially if they're not particularly skilled with each other's weapons, their opponents aren't skilled at fighting against a different weapon type, or their opponents completely don't expect them to use such a weapon. This is especially important against enemies that No-Sell against a character's signature weapon fighting style.
  • It may be part of their fighting style.
  • There are more people than available weapons, so they pass what they have back and forth as needed.
  • Both have attempted Throwing Your Sword Always Works and somehow end up with each other's weapons.

Not to be confused with Real-Time Weapon Change. See also "Freaky Friday" Flip and Opponent Switch. Compare with Use Their Own Weapon Against Them if one person's is lost and used by another.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Black Clover: When Dante ensnares Asta's anti-magic swords with his Body Magic, Yami passes his katana to Asta, with his newly transformed right arm coating it in anti-magic. Asta uses it to land the defeating attack on Dante just before the time he can use his right arm runs out.
  • The final battle in Cowboy Bebop, "The Real Folk Blues (Part 2)", ends when Spike and Vicious end up dropping their signature weapons — Spike's pistol and Vicious's katana — and end up with their opponents' favorite sidearm. They hand them back just before deliberately launching final, suicidal strikes against one another.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: In the battle between Wrath and old man Fu in front of central headquarters, Wrath ends up taking control of Fu's sword and Fu is forced to use one of Wrath's discarded knives.
  • In Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, Heero and Zechs fight each other in mechas with the Zero System (a sophisticated computer designed to give the pilot Combat Clairvoyance), Gundam Epyon and Wing Gundam Zero respectively. After both systems crash from trying to take each other into account, the pilots get out and after some consideration, switch their mechas.
  • Moriarty the Patriot, Louis and William swap weapons in The Phantom of Whitechapel, after William leaves his sword in one body and Louis throws a knife into another opponent. Their opponents are excited that they're unarmed, until the brothers simply remove the other's weapon from the nearest body.
  • In Noir, while Mireille is fighting Silvana, aka "the Intoccabile", Kirika shoots off the tip of Silvana's knife just as she's about to stab Mireille, who drops her own gun in shock before either realize what actually happened. They then both scramble to pick up something, with Mireille winding up with the broken end of the knife, and Silvana winding up with the gun. Notably, while Silvana has Mireille dead to rights, she hesitates — either out of genuine surprise at how quickly the situation reversed on her, inexperience since she usually uses knives, or some combination. It's just long enough that Mireille is able to close in for the kill and stab her.
  • In Shakugan no Shana, Sorath steals Shana's Nietono no Shana and callously discards his Blutsauger. Shana then picks up Blutsauger and continues the fight. They end up switching swords back.
  • In the final duel of Sword of the Stranger, the nameless ronin gets Luo-Lang's dao stuck in his arm and thrown down a story or so, so Luo-Lang picks up his katana while the ronin pulls Luo-Lang's sword out for their final clash. In a bit of Shown Their Work, this actually works against both of them (the strong clashes Luo-Lang is used to breaks the katana and the ronin is moving slightly slower due to the heavier sword), but it soon becomes a moot point as they score a mutual stab that only narrowly avoids being a Mutual Kill.

    Card Games 
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • The spell card Exchange allows the user and their opponent take one card from each other's hand.
    • Creature Swap allows each player to swap control of one monster they have with the other.

    Comic Books 
  • In the The Avengers / Ultraforce crossover series, Loki forces Iron Man and Prototype to battle one another after maneuvering them into accidentally switching their Powered Armor suits.
  • After being lured into a death-trap by some villains, Captain America briefly ended up wielding Hawkeye's bow and arrow while Hawkeye tossed around Cap's shield. Luckily, those villains were the Death-Throws, a troupe of criminal jugglers.
  • In an issue of Frank Miller's Daredevil, the hero and his Arch-Enemy Bullseye end up switching weapons briefly, with Bullseye using the hero's billy club to good effect while Daredevil quickly discards the villain's gun.
  • In Dark Empire, Luke Skywalker and Palpatine swap lightsabers during one of their fights.
  • An old issue of Marvel Team-Up from the 1970s has Doctor Strange and Spider-Man use a spell to give Spider-Man's web-shooters to Strange and Strange's magical abilities to Spider-Man just long enough to confuse and defeat a sorcerer armed with a powerful mystical talisman.
  • During the Conclave arc’s Combat by Champion In Lazarus, Forever Carlyle and Sonja Bittner switch swords near the fight's end. Sonja mentions how Forever’s sword felt different after the fight.
  • In Green Lantern/Space Ghost Special, Hal Jordan and Space Ghost are knocked out and captured by Keila, a native of a planet they landed on, and Keila confiscates Jordan's Ring and Space Ghost's Power Bands. When they are all attacked by a hostile military, the heroes quickly ask for their equipment back, but she accidentally throws them to the wrong hero. Space Ghost fumbles with the Ring while Jordan fumbles with the Power Bands, but they are able to defend themselves adequately until they are able to switch back.

    Fan Works 
  • Fates Collide: During their fight, Neo and Hyde end up trading their umbrella and knife. Hyde eventually takes his knife back.
  • Happens twice early on in I Did Not Want To Die, after the protagonist is shot the first time and he drops his M4A1. He is first handed an FN Minimi to suppress the enemy while he is evacuated, and then receives an AKMS once he is behind cover.
  • In Avengers: Infinite Wars, during the fight with the Gorog (a monster larger than a rancor), Jedi Master Aayla Secura ends up defending herself with Steve Rogers's shield, while Steve borrows one of her lightsabers to kill the Gorog from inside after it eats him.
  • In Pokémon Reset Bloodlines, when Ash and Anabel find themselves facing a Moltres, Ash tosses her his Z-Ring so that she can use his Psychicium-Z to trigger Shattered Psyche with her newly-evolved Espeon.
  • In the mass Middle-Earth/Arrowverse/Marvel Cinematic Universe crossover "Heroes stand united", during the final battle, Steve Rogers and Aragorn find themselves wielding Mjolnir, batting it back and forth and using it to boost Anduril and the vibranium shield as they fight Thanos and his core allies until the other heroes can return to the fold.
  • In Professor Arc: Student of Vacuo, Jaune's second practical lesson has pairs of students fighting other pairs with "randomized" weapons. Cardin and Russel get a rapier and great axe respectively and promptly swap weapons the moment their match starts as both are far more used to weapons similar to their partner's.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Happens in some of the sword fights in The Mask of Zorro.
  • One of these occurs in Big Trouble in Little China but to a less friendly degree. The main hero and his two allies take out a group of gangsters, then grab their weapons. The Supporting Protagonist quickly swaps guns with the Decoy Protagonist a moment later. Seeing that he now has a much smaller gun, he swaps it with another hero who bemoans the fact he now has the smallest weapon.
  • During the climactic battle of A Better Tomorrow II, Ken Gor and his opponent do this at the very end of their duel, which may have inspired the Cowboy Bebop example.
  • Jet Li's character and his samurai opponent Tanaka in Fearless end up swapping their weapons, a three-section staff and a katana respectively, in the last fight of the movie. They pause the fight to switch back and make things even again after Tanaka whaps himself in the back of the head with the three-section staff.
  • In Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Elizabeth and the two comic relief pirates, Pintel and Ragetti, are fleeing a gang of Davy Jones's henchmen with the chest and two swords between them. They end up throwing the swords back and forth to each other as needed to defeat the mooks, despite none of them having shown that level of swordsmanship or coordination before. note 
  • A drawn-out example features in the climax of Freddy vs. Jason. Jason gets the upper hand on Freddy, but Freddy manages to turn the tables by slicing off Jason's fingers, making him lose grip on his machete which Freddy uses along with his claw to beat Jason to a pulp. While grappling, Jason rams his severed stump into Freddy's torso, who retaliates by slowly driving Jason's machete into him. The heroine and her boyfriend manage to blow up a gas tank which sends both of them hurling into Crystal Lake. Just when they think it's over, they're approached by Freddy who's still wielding Jason's machete. Before he can kill them, he's run through with his own severed claw arm by Jason, who then topples back into the water. Lori then uses Jason's machete to finish off Freddy by decapitating him.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
  • This trope was meant to happen in Revenge of the Sith during the duel between Obi-Wan and Anakin. One scene opens with a cut to Obi-Wan holding a lightsaber while Anakin, who is unarmed, has grabbed Obi-Wan and has him in a chokehold; Obi-Wan then kicks Anakin to break out of this hold, they fight hand-to-hand and then both retrieve their lightsabers and begin swordfighting again. This scene is a bit confusing since in some shots Obi-Wan has his own lightsaber and in other shots he has Anakin's, because it was meant to show both disarming each other and ending up with the other's weapon briefly, but was shortened and changed to look like only Anakin was disarmed. Some shots with Obi-Wan holding Anakin's lightsaber were still used in the finished film though, leading to a small continuity problem.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Highlander:
    • In "Mountain Men", Caleb's son captured Duncan early in the episode and took away his katana, and gave it to Caleb. When Duncan finally faces off with Caleb, Tessa tries to return the katana to him, but Caleb stops her. So Duncan picks up Caleb's battle-axe, leaving Caleb to use Duncan's katana. In the fight that follows, both prove to be quite skilled with the other warrior's weapon.
    • In "Unholy Alliance Part 2", the final battle between Duncan and Xavier St. Cloud has this. Duncan disarms Xavier who promptly returns the favour with his metal hook hand. After some hand to hand combat, both end up near each other's weapon and continue the fight with each other's sword. This is the likely reason for Xavier losing the fight: while Duncan has no trouble using Xavier's rapier, the katana is basically a two-handed sword, making it awkward for Xavier to fight with one-handed.
  • Xena: Warrior Princess: Xena once fights a one-on-one fight against a giant barbarian with an axe and near the end of the fight, they switch weapons. Xena adapts much better than the barbarian, who's never held a sword in his life.
  • Done with fighting styles rather than weapons in Seijuu Sentai Gingaman/Power Rangers Lost Galaxy; Cobies/Chameliac, a Monster of the Week that is able to copy and counter the Rangers' fighting style gets outsmarted when the Rangers switch fighting styles and weapon configurations with each other, confusing the monster. Then, in the Megazord fight, he copies the Megazords' powers as well. When the Stratoforce Megazord shows up, he copies the Stratoforce's weapon (a giant boomerang/blade)... only for it to play this trope by pulling out the Centaurus Megazord's giant cannon and shooting him.
  • Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger:
    • Each team member starts with Sword and Gun, but they tend to swap around to suit their specialties: Joe (Blue) and Luka (Yellow) prefer Dual Wielding, Don (Green) and Ahim (Pink) go Guns Akimbo, while Marvelous (Red) sticks with sword and gun).
    • In #26, the team-up with Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger, Don calls for one with Joe and Kouta (Hurricane Yellow). This lands Kouta with a Gokai Saber and Gun, Master Swordsman Joe with both a Gokai Saber and Kouta's Hayatemaru, and Butt-Monkey Don with just the one Gokai Gun.
    • During the final showdown between Marvelous and his Rival Turned Evil Basco, the pair, who each use Sword and Gun, end up swapping one of their two weapons briefly, giving Marvelous two swords and Basco two guns.
  • Each of the members of Ressha Sentai ToQger will often switch their entire costumes, which gives them each other's signature weapons. This explicitly confers no practical benefit whatsoever, and they're just switching for the fun of it, until later in the show when they encounter areas where each of their powers will only work for a brief period, and thus switching dramatically extends how long they can fight.

  • Although officially illegal, there have been a couple of cases of ice hockey players playing and scoring goals using an opponent's stick that he took after his own was lost — here's an instance in 2010 with the Anaheim Ducks' Bobby Ryan scoring using a stick belonging to the Minnesota Wild's Mikko Koivu and then showing it off towards Koivu in celebration (the refs missed the fact that the stick Ryan used belonged to Koivu).


    Video Games 
  • Used in a cutscene in Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, when Dante and Vergil are forced into an Enemy Mine battle against Arkham. Usually, Vergil's weapon of choice is the Yamato, and Dante fights with the Rebellion, but they switch weapons briefly during the fight and are just as capable of fighting with the other's sword as their own.
  • In Over Growth , successfully countering an attack will give you your opponent's weapon. Enemies can do this as well, which can quickly change who has the upper hand if you aren't careful. It's sometimes a good idea to holster your weapon before attacking an unarmed enemy for this reason.
  • Cave Story: after you defeat and befriend Curly Brace, she offers to trade her Machine Gun for your Polar Star (the first weapon you acquired in the game). You can decline or take the offer, and if you do the latter, the swap is permanent. Slightly later in the game, you end up fighting side-by-side through a few levels.
  • In Secret of Mana, one party member equipping another party member's equipped weapon triggers a short cutscene of the two flinging their weapons to each other.
  • In The Last Stand: Union City, you can do this with your AI partners. Most often, players use this to exploit their infinite reserve ammo by giving them automatic weapons, a valid tactic as long as you don't care about XP, as you don't get any when the AI kills the zombie.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2:
    • This is how Blades and Drivers work. The Blade can create a weapon out of thin air, which the Driver uses while the Blade feeds them energy. Once they've synched enough, the Driver throws the weapon back to the Blade, who can use it for a powerful combo—but they have to throw it back to the Driver after that, as the Blade can't continue using such large amounts of energy for long.
    • The prequel DLC reveals it wasn't always this way. It used to be that Blades had their weapons at all times, while their Drivers simply fought with normal weapons. This was inefficient, however, as the Blades couldn't recover their energy very fast or directly support their Driver with power. Lora and her Blade Jin invented weapon switching, which quickly became the standard across the world. When Addam asks how they came up with it, Lora admits they were out of money and couldn't afford to buy another sword. Addam and Mythra are flabbergasted.

    Web Animation 
  • In this Stick Fight animation, Hyun (blue) and FLLFFL ("Alfa", green) knock away and catch each other's weapons. They both just hurt themselves trying to use each other's weapons, so they quickly switch them back.
  • Red vs. Blue: In season 9 episode 2, South calls out to North for a shotgun while they're both mid-battle. He tosses her one, and she uses it to blast one of the soldiers she's fighting.
  • RWBY: During Cinder and Raven's fight, they exchange strikes so fiercely they temporarily lose grip of their swords only to continue the fighting with each others' swords after grabbing them midair.

  • Used in Goblins when the protagonists are doing battle with the Yellow Musk Creeper and the Thornback Orc clan it has enslaved. Big Ears ends up holding off the orcs with Complains' magical shortsword and Thaco's Sword Cane after throwing his handaxe, while Thaco takes Complains' katana and attacks the creeper's heart.
  • In one strip of The Order of the Stick, the party is fighting a sand elemental that is under specific orders to "Kill everyone, starting with the human with the greatsword" (i.e. Roy). When Roy starts getting low on hit points, Haley takes his sword in order to force the elemental to attack her instead, while Roy takes Haley's bow so he can still attack it. This backfires on Roy when he starts thinking about where Haley keeps her arrows (She usually just has one in her hand when she needs one thanks to Willing Suspension of Disbelief) and quickly runs out of ammo.

    Western Animation 
  • The episode "Jack and the Spartans" of Samurai Jack has Jack throw his sword to an ally after the ally's weapon breaks. The ally gives his shield in return and they finish off their opponent, Jack with two shields and the Spartan with Jack's sword.
  • Star Wars Rebels: In their duel with the Grand Inquisitor in "Fire Across the Galaxy", Kanan and Ezra wind up wielding each other's lightsabers. The Inquisitor had confiscated Kanan's when he was captured, so he borrows Ezra's because they both know he's the better swordsman. Ezra then swipes Kanan's from the Inquisitor's belt while he's distracted fighting Kanan.
  • Used at least twice in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003 series):
    • In one episode, one of the fight scenes reaches a climax when Leo arms himself with the Sword of Tengu, which was forged specially for the Shredder, while the Shredder ends up wielding Leo's dual katanas. This leads to a Single-Stroke Battle.
    • In another, the brothers are facing a combat robot invented by Baxter Stockman which has been specifically programmed to counter their fighting styles; they decide to swap weapons with each other in order to confuse it, though with some difficulty early on.

    Real Life 
  • WW2 saw lot of examples of this. Equipment captured by one side was frequently reconditioned and used against its original owners. After the shattering Italian defeat in North Africa, for instance, two full regiments of Australian armour were equipped with captured Italian tanks. On the Axis side, Rommel employed captured British tanks to make up his own shortages. Things could get confusing in the desert. The Russians captured so many German Pnz III tanks that they considered it worthwhile to rebuild the booty German chassis to carry a far more potent anti-tank gun. Bizarrely, several of these were recaptured by the Germans and things came full circle — a German tank equipped with a Russian gun now fighting again for its original owners. The British Guards Armoured Division employed at least one captured Panther as a main battle tank. The Japanese captured so many M3 Stuarts in the Phillipines that they fitted a tank regiment with them. These American tanks fought against their original owners during the 1945 reconquest. Second echelon German units employed tanks and armoured cars captured from a dozen different countries...


Video Example(s):


North-South gun toss

North tosses South a shotgun in the midst of battle.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / MidfightWeaponExchange

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