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Sometimes a Knight Errant or The Drifter can't get the job done alone. So what do they do? Why, gather a group of likeminded individuals, of course. The Order is a group of people come together to further some aim, whether it's to accomplish a specific goal or in support of a more general set of ideals, which are usually written down in its Code. It is usually a highly exclusive organization—you cannot simply join, you must be recruited (or at least pass a difficult application process of some kind). However, despite these high standards, The Order can vary widely in size and influence. It may be a small, elite group of adventurers, or it may be an army-sized power unto itself with its own dedicated support staff and base(s) of operations.

The Order is often grounded in an Ancient Tradition, which may or may not be public knowledge. Many fictional Orders also train their members in the use of some Secret Art—in which case they are likely to only recruit those with the potential to use it. The Order is itself often (but not always) a part of The Church, making them Church Militants. This is probably a holdover from real life knightly orders, groups dedicated to the advancement of Christian interests and officially acknowledged by the Catholic Church. Similarly, you can expect many fictional Orders to have a distinctly chivalric flavor—even if the setting isn't otherwise medieval.

Orders can be secret or public, good or evil, but much like The Republic, good Orders show up far more often in fiction. Heroic Orders are likely to also be Heroes "R" Us, and dead Orders usually inspire Order Reborn plots. Paladins are usually part of an Order. If their purpose is protecting an ancient MacGuffin or other secrets they're an Ancient Order of Protectors. If they all use magic, they overlap with Magical Society. Compare with Avengers Assemble.

Not to be confused with the short-lived Marvel Comics title The Order (2007), the 2001 Jean-Claude Van Damme movie The Order 2001, or the 2003 Heath Ledger movie The Order. Also not to be confused with The Order: 1886 or the Netflix show The Order. And definitely not to be confused with the white supremacist group that killed Alan Berg in 1984. Finally, not to be confused with the abstract concept of order: for that one, please see Order Versus Chaos.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • The Black Order of D.Gray-Man collects Innocence and the people capable of using it to fight Akuma.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, the Demon Slayer Corps (Kisatsutai), is a secret military organization created by the Ubuyashiki family with the sole purpose of eradicating demon kind, at first they were just a group of normal swordsmen risking their lives to kill demons, whom the very weakest of could be a serious problem, but as the time went on they were blessed with the knowledge of Breathing arts, which made them, mere humans, acquire physical abilities that made the slayers far more successful in killing demons.
  • Order of Mary Magdalene from Chrono Crusade.
  • Code Geass has several Knightly ones, most notably the Knights of the Rounds. The spinoff manga Code Geass: Oz the Reflection has the Glinda Knights.
    • The Black Knights are styled this way in English - not just in translation, but in flavor text as well - as "The Order of the Black Knights" (Kuro no Kishidan in Japanese).
  • Fabricant 100: Mortsafe is a human organization that is described as an Anti-Fabricant group. It's not said how many Fabricants they've already defeated, if any, but if Luca is of any indication, their fighters are capable of it.
  • The "Jusenkyo Morals Committee" from a filler episode of Ranma ½ are a comically inept take on this concept. Their paladin Kenny the Enforcer's own Jusenkyo curse from the spring of the drowned pacifist Buddhist monk proves to be an Achilles' Heel.

    Comic Books 
  • The Sacred Order of Saint Dumas from Batman comics, founded by a guy who was too fanatical for the Templars, was a religious warrior sect who denied Papal sanction and went underground while secretly amassing wealth and power. They grew corrupt over the centuries, and were ultimately destroyed by Jean Paul Valley, the final successor to the name of their "avenging angel", Azrael.
  • DC Comics' Atomic Knights, a knightly order established After the End (possibly in the same future as Kamandi) by Sgt Gardner Grayle to protect the remains of civilization from the Black Baron. Later revealed as All Just a Dream, and later still Grayle set up a real order of Atomic Knights in the ruins of Bludhaven.
  • The Blood of the Ghost Rider comics fought alongside the spirits of vengeance in the past. The Caretaker is a survivor from this order, which is why he knows so much about the Ghost Rider.
  • Most incarnations of DC Comics' Green Lantern Corps are effectively this, with the Guardians of the Universe behind it all. The Guardians' first attempt at creating The Order was the Manhunters, robotic humanoids that came to the conclusion that the most effective way to prevent chaos was to exterminate all life.

    Fan Works 
  • The Chaotic Masters: The Knights of Entropy are the militant wing of Chaostism, the religion based on worship of the Chaotic Masters, tasked with manipulating world events in Meridian's favor.
  • Chasing Dragons:
    • Stannis creates a few of these after becoming king. Except for the first, he adds the position of Grand Master of each order to the hereditary titles of the King on the Iron Throne.
      • The Royal Order of the Storm, the replacement for the defunct Kingsguard, which serves the same role but with an expanded roster. Also called the Stormguard (though the current Lord Commander hates that name).
      • The Royal Order of the Sun, a standing army designed to enforce royal authority in Dorne following the Red Viper Rebellion.
      • The Royal Order of the Knights of the Crown, a standing army for the Crownlands, members of which also serve as marines in the royal fleet.
      • The Royal Order of the Sea, which is created after the Greyjoy Rebellion to enforce Stannis' new draconian laws for the Iron Islands and keep them pacified.
    • A non-Stannis example: After the schism in the Faith between the traditionalists in the Great Sept of Baelor and the Myr-based reformists led by Septon Jonothor, the Order of the Sunset is founded as a fraternal organization for Baelorite knights living in the Kingdom of Myr. The Jonothorans, meanwhile, found the Knights of the First Sept of Myr to serve the same purpose for themselves.
    • The Brotherhood of the Broken Chain is set up as the Kingdom of Myr's Praetorian Guard, composed of a mix of knights and freed slaves. Unlike the Kingsguard or Stormguard they're not expected to serve for life or renounce having families, but are expected to protect the royal family with their lives.
  • The Good Hunter has The Order of the Chief God, the main anti-mamono organization in the setting. It periodically recruits potential Hero candidates and organises crusades in order to pursue their agenda.
  • The A Man of Iron series has the Knights of the Dawn, the ancient brotherhood led by Steve Rogers who fought against the Others during the Long Night. Afterwards, they evolved into the Night's Watch.
  • The Pieces Lie Where They Fell: The Questioning Order, a group dedicated to the persecution, usually with bloody violence, of Changelings. Even non-Changelings don’t like them because of how creepy they look and act.
  • In Rerum Danarae, the Navy is this, rooted in and still to the present day, carried by the descendants of the nobility of the Ancient Kingdom, Danara Marina, founded After the End to atone for the destruction their last king (an usurper) wrecked upon the world by their rightful ruler. Until today, they do try their best to uphold justice, but it's kind of hard if your employer forgot what that means to you…

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Medjai in The Mummy Trilogy, whose job seems to be to protect all the potentially world-ending crap that the ancient Egyptians left lying around. There seems to be just the one guy in the first movie, but in the second they're upgraded to The Cavalry against the resurrected army of Anubis.
  • The Brothers in Perfect Creature are an monastic order of vampires. In this setting, vampires are born rather than being made and are always male as such, they are inducted immediately after birth to be taught that their purpose is to serve and guide mankind.
  • Quest of the Delta Knights: The Delta Knights are a secret society dedicated to bringing mankind out of the Dark Ages, and into an age of enlightenment. It's even referred to as The Order.
  • The Jedi Order of Star Wars, complete with Secret Art (the Force), Ancient Tradition (the Light Side), and Evil Counterpart (at least in some eras), the Sith. Star Wars Legends added some extra sub-divisions: The Corellian Jedi are an offshoot of the main Order who disliked some drastic policy changes (most notably that Jedi would be forbidden to raise families or maintain a household outside of the Temple) enough to formally schism and set up their own Temple, and the Jedi Agricorps and Medicorps are semi-autonomous groups who apply their Force powers to the arts of agriculture and medicine respectively. There are also the Jedi Shadows, a small group of Jedi who specialise heavily in the more combat-oriented Force teachings: Their original purpose was to hunt down and eliminate Sith holocrons and other darksider artefacts, but later evolved into a more general troubleshooter role for when the Jedi Council needed to remind their enemies that Good is Not Nice.

  • The Lord of the Rings:
    • The Rangers of Arnor, descendants of ancient Númenor who continue to train in ancient skills and martial arts.
    • There's also the Istari, a Five-Man Band of wizards. And the White Council if you were to include certain important Elves.
  • As medieval fantasies set in a realm of Fantastic Catholicism, the Deryni works feature a number of these, including:
    • The Michaelines, named for their patron Saint Michael the Archangel, are a military order prominent in the Camber trilogy. They are presented as a cross between common notions of the Templars and the Jesuits: wealthy, powerful, and adept at all forms of combat (including intellectual). Their membership was mixed human and Deryni, with the Deryni leading the others in quasi-arcane meditations. Camber's son Joram was a member, as was his late-life alter ego Alister Cullen (Vicar General of the Order). The Michaelines were suppressed by the the regents circa 918, and many members fled into exile with the Knights of the Anvil.
    • The Knights of the Anvil, or Anvillers, take their name from their home region, a harsh environment southeast of Bremagne called the Anvil of the Lord. A military order with a reputation for stealth, the Anvillers were influenced by many cultures, Muslim as well as Christian. Members have small crosses tattooed on their bodies in remembrance of Christ's wounds when they take final vows; Sir Sé Trelawney displays those at his wrists (and jestingly refers to the others) on a visit to Alyce de Corwyn Morgan in Childe Morgan.
  • The Dragon Riders of Eragon.
  • In Raymond E. Feist's Empire Trilogy, the Great Ones gather children with magical talent and train them as powerful magicians.
  • Empire of the Vampire: The Ordo Argent, a Church Militant branch of the One Faith hierarchy operating out of the ancient San Michon monastery deep in the mountains of Nordlund. Though the order also counts regular staff, such as a group of secretive smiths known as "Blackthumbs" and an order of nuns called the Silver Sorority, its main members are the palebloods, cursed children born of union between vampires and mortal women. To attone for the sin of their birth and rescue their souls from damnation in Hell, young palebloods are conscripted into the Ordo and trained to hunt their vampiric kin, as well as other horrors of the night. The Ordo languished in obscurity for many centuries after its founding, but after Daysdeath, with the numbers of Dead soaring, it found itself enjoying the favour of Empress-Consort Isabella, allowing them to broaden their operations.
  • The Order of the Phoenix introduced in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is a rather small example of limited scope (a dozen or so people at any one time, focusing on opposing Voldemort). Their evil counterpart in the Harry Potter series are the Death Eaters, Voldemort's inner circle.
  • The elite intellectual organization residing in Castalia, called simply "The Order", in The Glass Bead Game.
  • The Dresden Files:
    • The Knights of the Cross, a group of three men who each were given swords that are said to have one of the nails of Christ's cross embedded on it. This gives them the ability to fight off forces of evil, and they've helped Harry Dresden many a time in defeating dark supernatural creatures. Interestingly, only one of them is truly Catholic, and he's easily the nicest, least Church Militant person ever; out of the other two, one got converted to Baptist Christianity by mistake, and the other one is a skeptic who believes heavenly creatures—including the archangel that gave him his sword—can just as easily be Sufficiently Advanced Aliens. In Skin Game, Waldo Butters, a Jew, joins their ranks.
    • The Order of the Blackened Denarius, more commonly known as the Denarians, are the Evil Counterpart to the Knights of the Cross, being composed of people who have each been possessed (willingly and otherwise, depending on the member) by the Fallen Angels contained within Judas' 30 pieces of silver. Their duty is to spread as much evil and chaos as possible in the world, though they're hindered somewhat by the fact that they tend to have different views on how to do this and fight amongst themselves.
    • There's also the White Council, which could fit the description. Unfortunately, among the senior council, the Merlin is a pretentious ass, Ancient Mai usually comes across as a horrid bitch, and Gregori Cristos is, in Ebenezar's words, an unpleasant bastard.
  • The backstory of The Stormlight Archive has the ten orders of Knights Radiant, who disbanded centuries before the story starts. They were Magic Knights, who protected humanity from the Voidbringers.
  • In L. Jagi Lamplighter's Prospero's Daughter trilogy, the Orbis Suleimani keeps mankind ignorant of the existence of magic. That way, instead of resorting to evil spirits, we resort to science and so live much better.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire has numerous examples, ranging from the Night's Watch (dedicated to protecting Westeros from the threats in the North) to the maesters (who are dedicated to study and the gathering of knowledge), to the Kingsguard (a group of exactly seven knights, who act as the king's Praetorian Guard). Later the Faith of the Seven are given leave to bear arms again and recreate the Faith Militant, consisting of two orders, The Warrior's Sons (made up of knights and other nobility), and the Poor Fellows (made up of the peasantry).
  • Victoria has the Christian Marines, a sworn fellowship of military and police veterans that starts out as a neighborhood protection association against organized crime, but becomes an insurrectionary movement when the corrupt government attempts to crack down on them. The same story also features the Knights of St. Louis, a modern-day order of literal crusaders who join the neo-Tsarist Russians in their global wars against Islam.
  • The "League" the main character belonged to in his youth, in The Journey to the East by Herman Hesse.
  • The Fraternity of the Stone (from the thriller of that name by David Morrell) were a Christian response to the Hashashin, now an Ancient Conspiracy charged with the protection of the Catholic church.
  • In Updraft, the city doesn't really have a centralised government, but Singers are the protectors of the city and keepers of its Laws. They keep apart from ordinary citizens, and are secretive about their techniques and operations. They're highly identifiable, having silver tattoos, and are both respected and feared. At the end of the book, it's revealed to the world that they've been lying about the protection they provide; to reform the Order, there are going to have to be major changes, including ending its separation from the people it's supposed to serve.
  • The eponymous group of the Heralds of Valdemar series by Mercedes Lackey. The Heralds are each Chosen by their Companions, Cool Horse–shaped Bond Creatures, to defend the Kingdom of Valdemar in any way necessary. Each Herald possesses Psychic Powers, Incorruptible Pure Pureness, and a life-long bond with his or her Companion. This order is especially closely tied to its Kingdom, since the Monarch is required to be a Herald—the aforementioned qualities ensure that he'll put his people's good above his own. They're called Heralds out of tradition; after the original King Valdemar and his Heir, the third person Chosen was Valdemar's royal herald.
  • The Silerian Trilogy: The Guardians, magic users who control fire and speak with the dead, in service of their goddess. Also the Sisterhood, who are somewhat like nuns and care for the sick or injured at Sanctuaries.
  • Talion: Revenant: The Talions, who are an old international organization which keeps the balance of power between the countries that rose from the Shattered Empire, defends them against common threats and stops criminals who cross borders. Created originally by the old Empire (before its Shattering) the Talions outlived their creators. They are divided into different branches, each with their own function, the Justices being the oldest with others added over time.
  • The Arch Order of Light in Shadow of the Conqueror are the established faction of Lightbinders who defend Tellos from any and all threats. The Archknights have long been locked in a Forever War with the Shade, who seek to wipe out humanity by bringing about The Night That Never Ends, but they also once set aside their code of political neutrality in order to stop the Dawn Empire from putting all of Tellos beneath its boot.
  • Sword of Truth:
    • The Confessors, a group of women who for millennia served as truth-finders, insuring true confessions as their gift can make people tell it. Led by a Mother Confessor, she chaired the Council of the Midlands, serving as effectively their leader. They were centered in Aidendril, and have largely died out in wars.
    • The Wizards had one as well, who trained men who have magic in the Wizards Keep of Aidendril. Closely allied to the Confessors, ancient Wizards actually created them.
    • The Sisters of the Light are sorceresses who train young women with the gift and shepherd prophets. Since Wizards have largely died out, they took over training young men as well, but this takes far longer. A religious group, the Sisters are worshippers of the Creator, though some within their ranks have now secretly sworn themselves to his mortal enemy the Keeper. They live in the Palace of the Prophets on Halsband Island, a place in the Old World, which is under a spell which slows their aging significantly, so they can live centuries.
    • The Mord Sith, a group of female warriors who serve as bodyguards and torturers to D'Hara's Lords Rahl, wielding the agiel, a magical weapon capable of causing intense pain. Additionally they're able to turn magic back against its casters.
    • The Imperial Order, a fanatical group in the Old World which advocates extreme collectivism and equality. Due to this, they oppose magic as some people have the gift while others don't. In spite of this, their leader and many members are themselves magic users (they justify this as using magic to destroy it). They create an empire under Jagang, a Dreamwalker with the ability to control people's minds, later invading the New World which causes a huge war.
  • The Silver Order in Tasakeru, made up of worshippers of the Goddess of Life. The Order's Knights are one of the three major peacekeeping forces in sentient society.
  • In The Arts of Dark and Light, The Knights of Saint Michael train boys who demonstrate an aptitude for Anti-Magic as templars, who enforce the Church's Ban on Magic and help the Republic's armies resist hostile sorceries in war.
  • InCryptid: The Covenant of St. George is an ancient organization (their name indicates they were probably once associated with the church) dedicated to hunting down and exterminating "monsters", many of which are sapient beings guilty of nothing more than not being born human. The Price-Healy family that the main characters belong to is descended from former Covenant members who had a Heel Realization and cut ties with the organization, which branded them traitors and sent agents to eliminate them (ironically, several agents they sent (Thomas and Dominic) ended up marrying into the family).
  • Nevermoor: The Wundrous Society makes up the VIPs of the Free State, being given special treatment and privileges everywhere by virtue of their membership in Wunsoc. They even have their own police force and laws whose authority supersedes the legal system the common folk ("Unwuns") have to abide by, which means Wunsoc members are often literally above the law. However, in exchange, Wunsoc members are expected to protect the Free State and everyone in it, even if it means making great personal sacrifices or laying down their lives. If Wunsoc gives a member an order, they're expected do it, no questions asked, and members are generally at the mercy of the High Council of Elders' decisions. (The Elders aren't bad people, but they are ruthlessly pragmatic, even—or especially—towards fellow members of Wunsoc, and can make plenty of people's lives unpleasant in the name of the greater good.)
  • Quarters: In Shkoder the bards are a select group with their own living spaces named halls and use their Magic Music power to various ends on the realm's behalf.
  • Subverted in The Witcher. The Witchers were initially formed as the "Order of Witchers" under the banners of the Northern Kingdoms in an attempt to protect humanity from monsters as they colonized the continent. However, over time the Witchers abandoned their knightly values and the Order was divided into several "schools" with differing ideals, with Witchers as a whole becoming Knight Errant-esque mercenaries. However, in the anthology novel Tales from the world of The Witcher, it's mentioned that decades after the events of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt a Second Conjunction of the Spheres occurred, resulting in the world being filled with new kinds of monsters, and new Witcher schools being established to confront them with stricter codes of conduct to legitimize them in the public's eyes.
  • The Chronicles of Dorsa:
    • The Wise Men are monk-like scholars who serve as counselors and magistrates in the Empire. Strict rationalists, the Wise Men disbelieve in any gods, an afterlife, creatures like dragons or goblins and magic generally. They teach all of this is just superstition (much is revealed as being real).
    • The Brotherhood of Culo are sorcerers protecting the Empire, and humankind as a whole, from the creatures in the Shadowlands. In particular, they're good at magical illusions.
    • The Order of Targhan is a secret society with the opposite view from the Brotherhood, saying shadows once lived in the same world as humans, which they strive to restore, saying this is harmonious and the original, natural state that will offer them power. In pursuit of that end, they are assassins with both magic and ordinary weapons.
  • Shatter the Sky: The Aurati are an elite group of women who serve the Zefedi emperor. Most serve as the administrators in different places, reporting back to him. Some however have magical gifts, such as the seers, predicting the future for not only him but also his subjects. Any girls they find with the same gift are forcibly inducted into their ranks. Others are taken on voluntarily as apprentices.
  • Tales of Inthya: All the gods have their own clergy and followers, with different focuses that depend on their domains. The Order of the Sun is an organization sworn to protect people, in service of Iolar, God of Law and Civilization. While their most prominent component is the paladins, they have justices and magistrates in their ranks as well.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • The Watcher's Council. Since there is only one active Slayer at any time (in theory), the show was always vague about what the rest of the organization got up to. It didn't help that some of their actions bordered on Knight Templar, especially in season three, which saw Giles being fired halfway through and ended with Buffy telling them she was doing things her way from now on. They were a bit more helpful in season five, but their contribution to season seven was to be blown up.
      Quentin: We're not in the business of fair, Miss Summers, we're fighting a war.
      Giles: You're waging a war. She's fighting it. There's a difference.
    • The Order of Aurelius, headed up by The Master and later the Anointed One, were the main villains of season one and the first few episodes of season two. Then Spike and Dru came along and got bored of them very quickly.
  • The Order has the Hermetic Order of the Blue Rose and the much smaller rival society The Knights of St Christopher. The Order are practitioners of magic and the Knights are Werewolves. We also meet the Esoteric Sons of Promethus, a rival magic order to the Blue Rose, and Praxis, a communist anarchist group who wants to bring the power of magic to the people.
  • Warrior Nun revolves around the Order of the Cruciform Sword, a secret Catholic sect of nuns trained to fight demons. They were founded during the First Crusade by a warrior woman named Arela, who had an angel's halo implanted in her body, which gave her enhanced strength, a Healing Factor, and other abilities; this halo has been passed down over the centuries from one leader of the Order to the next.
  • The Wheel of Time (2021):
    • The Aes Sedai, along with being a Magical Society, is this. Different divisions called Ajahs exist within them, including the Blue (who pursue justice), Yellow (the healers), Brown (the scholars), Red (who gentle male channelers), Green (who battle Shadowspawn), etc. At least officially, their goal is to serve the muggle populace at large.
    • Wisdoms (the rural female channelers who live in small villages like the Two Rivers) have an organization too, with a ritual to initiate new members and all wear their hair with a certain braided style. They serve their people as healers mostly.

    Mythology and Legend 

    Professional Wrestling 

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons naturally has more than its fair share. Greyhawk has the Knights of the Hart, Dragonlance has the Knights of Solamnia, Eberron has the Knights Arcane.
    • Forgotten Realms:
      • There are lot of gods sponsoring paladins, each having one or more paladin order to his name, divided by regions or specific tasks—such as Knights of Samular, dedicated mainly to hunting down some dangerous artifacts around Sword Coast. "Mundane" knightly organizations may be even more numerous.
      • The city-state of Ravens Bluff alone has its knighthood split into 8 specialized orders. Initiate-level Order of the Golden Rooster (concerned with their and city's prestige and appearance), then secular orders of Griffon (martial might), Dove (diplomacy, non-violent problem solving) and Hawk (intelligence, undercover investigations), then higher-ranked religious orders—Keepers of the Mystic Flame (magic threats), Right hand of Tyr (justice) and Phoenix (The Undead and pesky extraplanars) and the elite order, Knights of the Raven.
      • The Harpers are a widespread secret society that seeks to oppose evil in all it's forms, they're less organized and less formal (members meet rarely and irregularly at gatherings that resemble fey parties more than anything else, and all it really takes to join is the sponsorship of an established member or two) than most examples of this trope, but they're certainly exclusive enough and goal-oriented enough to qualify.
    • In Planescape, few of the factions fit but several of the sects (mini-factions outside of Sigil) do, such as the Order of the Planes-Militant. The Harmonium faction started as one of these centuries ago, when a group of adventurers founded the organization to permanently save their homeworld from evil. It eventually succeeded... by conquering the rest of the world and pushing out into other planes, graduating from The Order to The Empire (or The Good Kingdom, if you ask them) back home and trying to do the same elsewhere.
    • The nation of Karrnath in Eberron divides a lot of its military up into various Orders with different specialties. The one most players will get to know is the Order of the Emerald Claw, a Renegade Splinter Faction who serve the lich Vol and are considered zealots, terrorists and traitors across most of Khorvaire, especially in Karrnath itself (and not just because Kaius III has some very serious bones to pick with Vol).
  • The various magical groups in Shadowrun fill this role for people with the potential for magic. The exact perks gained depend on the group, but they can all help mages become initiates, which gives them greater power and abilities.
  • Warhammer 40,000 has several from the Imperium Of Man, but the closest to the stereotypical Order are the Grey Knights, an uncorruptible organisation of Power Armored, Daemon-hunting Super Soldiers. However, being a heavy Deconstruction of The Paladin, they're extremely ruthless, and undergo 666 Mind Rapes during their selection course.
    • Most other Space Marine Chapters, the Inquisition, the Adeptas Sororitas, most Eldar Aspect temples, the Incubi cults, and the Harlequins/White Seers also qualify to one degree or another. The Deathwatch is slightly more of a Legion of Lost Souls IN SPACE!, though.
  • Warhammer, many Imperial Knights belong to a certain order, they are either Templar Orders who venerate a particular god, or are Secular Orders who honor most gods equally.
  • There are five different Military Orders, all based on historical Military Orders, serving the Catholic Church in Infinity, all updated for the setting (the Knights of Santiago now protect pilgrims traveling space trade routes instead of just pilgrims traveling across northern Spain).
  • Rocket Age has the Order of the Sacred Hamaxe, which is a Martian faith made up of holy war-bands led by full priests.
  • Rifts has more knightly orders than you can shake a magic sword at. They tend to be defined by a Character Class and by having a Code Of Conduct.
    • The Cyber-Knights were founded by a immortal paladin from another dimension to fight for justice in post-apocalyptic Earth. In theory, he serves as their spiritual guide and leader, but in practice they are a very loose organization whose members are free to follow their own path and form their own bands.
    • The Mystic Knights are an order of knights dedicated to evil as well as mercenary work. The Knights of the White Rose are a Good Counterpart order with a more traditional (but still pragmatic) code who work against them.
    • The Sky-Knights are a group of flying Lyn-Srial aliens dedicated to peace and defending the weak, and who use a racial magic involving cloud-shaping.

  • BIONICLE: The Hand of Artakha and its successor The Order of Mata Nui

    Video Games 
  • The Assassins of Assassin's Creed are engaged in a Secret War with the Templars.
  • The Divine Order of Lucian in the Divinity series was founded by the God-Emperor Lucian in order to protect mankind from the Black Ring Apocalypse Cult and the otherworldly Voidwoken. However by the time of Divinity: Original Sin II they've devolved into a Well-Intentioned Extremist Church Militant group as they round up users of Source magic and toss them into internment camps for this purpose.
  • The Dragon Age franchise has several.
    • The Grey Wardens, of whom the first game's protagonist is a new recruit, were formed to guard against the Darkspawn.
    • The Circle of Magi exists to train and control mages... and the Templar Order exists to hunt mages outside the Circle's control. While Dragon Age mages can be dangerous, the Templars frequently end up acting as the Chantry's standing army rather than protectors of the innocent. The Seekers of Truth exist to prevent Templar abuses but, again, it doesn't often work in practice.
    • The Ben-Hassrath are the Secret Police of the Qunari, whose mandate is to "protect the faith". This can involve espionage, assassination, or "re-education".
    • The dwarves have the Silent Sisters, an Amazon Brigade who cut out their own tongues in honour of their founder, and the Legion of the Dead, an Army of Thieves and Whores who 'escape' sentencing by pledging the rest of their lives to the fight against the darkspawn.
  • The Elder Scrolls series has quite a few, as benefits its medieval fantasy setting. A few of the more prominent ones:
    • The Blades are an order that serves as the personal bodyguard (as well as spies and general secret agents) of the Cyrodiilic Emperors. They got their start as an order of Akaviri dragonslayers and each has been put through enough Training from Hell that they become a One-Man Army wielding their namesake katanas. The Order of Talos, a religious order worshiping Talos (the ascended god form of Tiber Septim, the founder of the Third Tamriellic Empire) overlaps quite a bit with (but is technically distinct from) the Blades.
    • The Dark Brotherhood, an order of assassins who worship the deity Sithis and answer to a being known as the Night Mother via contract killings. New members are typically recruited after they've committed a murder. The group is technically illegal throughout Tamriel, though its presence has been historically tolerated by rulers throughout history due to the group's usefulness.
    • The Thieves' Guild is a loose organization of thieves and fences who operate throughout Tamriel. Though illegal by its very nature, the Guild has been tolerated by authorities throughout the centuries for its role as a "crime regulator." Each province appears to have its own chapter of the Guild, though there is only loose association at best between these chapters as each has their own rules and regulations. One rule they have in common is that each forbids their members from harming targets during jobs.
    • The Order of the Black Worm is a secretive Magical Society/Necrocracy founded by the legendary/infamous Lich/Necromancer Mannimarco and is dedicated to the study of The Dark Arts. They act as a villainous Evil Counterpart to the Mages Guild, especially after the Guild declared a ban on necromancy. Mages Guild defectors (as well as all manner of other rogue magic users) flock to the Order, where their members operate in cells and are sworn to secrecy on pain of Undeath.
    • The Psijic Order is the oldest monastic order in Tamriel, founded during the ancient times by an Aldmeri sect who rejected the transition to Aedra worship from ancestor worship, known to them as the "Old Way" or "Elder Way." They settled on the island of Artaeum, the third largest island in the Summerset Isles, which has been known to disappear for centuries at a time for reasons only known to the Order. Thousands of years later, they are now more well known as a reclusive order of immensely powerful magic users, who have Sufficiently Analyzed Magic to the point where they can utilized magic in ways (and on a scale) unmatched by any other extant group in Tamriel.
    • The Redguards, a Proud Warrior Race of dark-skinned human Master Swordsmen whose ancestors hail from the lost continent of Yokuda, offer several examples of their own:
      • The Ansei, also known as "Sword Saints," were an order made up of the greatest "sword singers," Yokudan warriors who follow "The Way of the Sword," a martial philosophy on blade mastery. So great was their mastery of the blade that they could manifest a sword from their very soul, known as a Shehai or "Spirit Sword". To become an Ansei of the first-rank, a sword-singer had to demonstrate an ability to form the Shehai. These Shehai were described as typically pale, misty, insubstantial and as if it was made of light. Sometimes its shape wouldn't even be particularly sword-like, and would be of no use as an actual weapon. Ansei wishing to earn the elite title of first-rank were required to give up their most treasured weapons and war materiel before undertaking a grueling initiation ritual. If they succeeded, they would no longer need conventional weapons. Ansei of the second-rank and above were known to have the ability to not only form the Shehai, but wield it as a weapon in battle. Their Shehai shined brighter and was much deadlier. Described as an "unstoppable weapon of great might" that could cut down foes like "a scythe through wheat", disarming such an Ansei could only be done by severing their head or taking their mind. (However, there was some evidence to suggest the Shehai of an Ansei could be shattered, leaving behind only its essence.) While the Ansei came with the Redguards to Tamriel, their numbers dwindled over time. There hasn't been a known Ansei warrior since the 2nd Era, and by the 4th Era, they are considered a myth.
      • As Hammerfell (the Redguards' homeland in Tamriel) has no traditional standing army, various knightly orders fill the role as the Redguards first line of defense. Perhaps the most famous is the Order of Diagna, a group of warriors dedicated to Diagna, the Yokudan "God of the Sideways Blade." Their most famous leader was Gaiden Shinji, founder of the Imperial City Arena and legendary Master Swordsman in his own right. Every year, new initiates to the Order play the Orcs in a reenactment of the Siege of Orsinium, in which Shinji dueled the Orc warchief, but was betrayed by his Breton allies who opened fire on them both, killing them.
      • As Redguard religion forbids their warriors from raising arms against the honored dead, a specialized order known as the Ash'abah is called in when there is need to put the dead back to rest. Despite the necessity of their role, they are shunned by Redguard society and mostly wander the Alik'r Desert as exiles until they are called upon.
    • The religion of the Nine Divines has many orders dedicated to its various deities. Some of the most prominent include the aforementioned Order of Talos, the Order of Arkay (dedicated to the God of Life and Death which includes the priests who oversee funerals and burials), and the Cult of the Ancestor Moth (dedicated to Julianos, the God of Wisdom and Logic, which is tasked with keeping and using the eponymous Elder Scrolls themselves).
    • Daggerfall features several knightly orders of the Bretons in High Rock. For example, Daggerfall has the Knights of the Dragon, while Wayrest has the Knights of the Rose.
    • Oblivion:
      • The Knights of the Nine expansion adds a sidequest where you can revive the eponymous order, dedicated to the ultimate defeat of a particular Sealed Evil in a Can. It ultimately consists of nine knights and a handful of support staff, based out of a small fort in the wilderness.
      • The Cyrodiilic vampire bloodline has formed one, known as the "Cyrodiil Vampyrum Order", or simply "Our Order" to its members. The Order's bloodline are masters of concealment, able to blend in seamlessly with mortals if well-fed. They are also known to be able to control their blood lust to a far greater degree than other bloodlines, rarely killing their victims outright. The Order has exterminated every other bloodline within Cyrodiil, and does not tolerate rogue Vampires within Cyrodiil's borders. Their membership is typically well-placed in Cyrodiilic society, able to manipulate local politics to their benefit.
    • Skyrim:
      • The Vigil of Stendar is a Church Militant order dedicated to hunting down and destroying supernatural threats to mortal life, including Daedra, Daedra worshipers, vampires, lycanthropes, and others.
      • The Dawnguard DLC has the eponymous Dawnguard, an Order Reborn that fights vampires. The order was originally formed when the Jarl of Riften's son turned into a vampire. The reborn order was founded founded by Isran, a former Vigilant of Stendarr who was kicked out of the order for being too extreme. As it turns out, The Extremist Was Right.
  • The Order of the Hammer, a.k.a. Hammerites, in the Thief series. One of the Church Militant varieties, though they make up the entirety of The Church except when it undergoes a schism in the second game.
  • Order of the Sunspears and Order of Whispers in Guild Wars.
  • The Spectres in Mass Effect series are a somewhat atypical Space Opera example. They are a very exclusive organization (naming a person a Spectre requires unanimous decision by the Citadel Council, so Shepard was the first human to gain the title) pledged to the service of the Council and "there's no such thing as a 'former Spectre'". The atypical part is that they tend to operate alone (or with their own assembled teams) and without much support from the organization itself, though they do have access to stocks of rare and highly advanced equipment. Also, they can requisition Council resources as necessary, e.g. extranet bandwidth.
  • The Knights of Cunitz from Lost Technology.
  • The Order from Freelancer. You spend most of the game hearing about them as an enigmatic terrorist group, with a strange and dark agenda compared to the more obvious pirate and terrorist organizations living at the fringes of society. Eventually you discover they are a counter-conspiracy against the body-snatcher aliens who are slowly conquering human society from within, hence their bad reputation.
  • The Order of the Flame from Drakan, though it's more of an Order Reborn, since Arokh is the only living dragon throughout both games who can be considered a member.
  • The Brotherhood of Steel from the Fallout series is one of the larger examples, as one of the major powers in the setting. Though they use powered armor and BFGs instead of swords and shields, they have a deliberate chivalric flavor — their soldiers are "knights" (and elite ones "paladins"), their scientists are "scribes", their leaders are "elders", etc. Their Ancient Tradition is the preservation of technology and technical knowledge in the post-apocalyptic wasteland, often to the exclusion of helping people as they tend to focus on larger-scale threats like The Master and The Institute.
    • Fallout 3 has the spinoff Columbia chapter, whose Cool Old Guy leader has shifted priorities from collecting technology in the Capitol Wasteland to containing the local Super Mutant population. This was technically okayed by the main Brotherhood leadership... but they stoped sending reinforcements and supplies immediately thereafter, essentially making the Brotherhood (Columbia chapter) a separate faction. The Columbia chapter eventually spawns its own spinoff, the Brotherhood Outcasts, who adhere to the main Brotherhood's "technology is more important than anything else" philosophy, and left the now Lyons' Brotherhood of Steel to follow it. By Fallout 4 the descendant of the Brotherhood's founder, Arthur Maxson, restores the branch to its original mission statement in order to focus their efforts on stopping the Institute and governing the Capital Wasteland.
    • Fallout 3 also has the Regulators, a group of Vigilante Men who are essentially The Sheriff in a setting with no government to give them legitimate authority — so they take it into their own hands. If the player ends up on the evil end of the Karma Meter, they'll become a Random Encounter trying to kill him.
  • The Knights of the Silver Hand from the Warcraft setting were founded by the first paladins. It had quite a few members at one point, but was largely wiped out by Arthas after his corruption. It was later reformed by Tirion Fordring, and then merged with the Argent Dawn to form the Argent Crusade. After the death of Tirion during the Burning Legion attack on Azeroth, a heroic Paladin reforms the Order and unites all other Paladin orders under its banner.
  • The Ultima games have the Order of the Silver Serpent, operating out of Serpent's Hold. Exclusive to Ultima Underworld are the Knights of the Crux Ansata.
  • Both ''Duty'' and ''Freedom'' in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. are this. They're organizations determined to prevent the Zone from spreading, but engaged in a war over how to do it. (Duty believing in completely sealing it off to keep anyone from meddling with it, Freedom wants to make the area safe enough that international researchers can study how to reverse or contain the Zone).
  • The Rangers of Metro 2033 are a post-apocalyptic example. They're a group of veteran fighters and explorers who do whatever they think is necessary for the good of the metro, from dealing with bandits and mutants to exploring the surface. Of course, their motto is "if it's hostile, kill it".
  • Another use of the trope name verbatim, The Order from Strife. Described quite adequately in the manual as a religious dictatorship that uses cybernetic augmentation and advanced weaponry to conquer the populace. And the that religion involves an evil alien that arrived via the same comet that spread The Virus that caused assorted death, mutation, and a tendacy towards revering The Entity.
  • Bastion features numerous orders in its pre-Calamity backstory; the city of Caelondia was organized into a collection of guilds, each named The [Job Description] (eg, the Marshals, city peacekeepers; the Brushers, frontiersmen operating in the wilderness around the city) and each with their own weapons (eg, the Mason's cael hammer, the Mender's bullhead shield).
  • Blacklight Retribution 's The Order is a pretty literal example, at least on the evil end of the spectrum. They're secretive, rumored to be ex-Special Forces, and take it upon themselves to "clean" the world by unleashing SIV. Another ex-Special Forces Order that goes by a different name opposes them in the singleplayer story.
  • Vector Thrust gives us Legion, a partly state-funded organisation of pilots, soldiers and politicians dedicated to preventing another large-scale nuclear catastrophe.
  • The Order from Orcs Must Die! and it's sequels is an organization dedicated to the defense of magical rifts from Orcs attempting to invade their world. Its members consist of War Mages, who set up traps to kill the orcs, and a host of others to help the mages Hold the Line, including Archers, Highly armored Paladins, and Weavers, who allow the warmage access to the magic they've studied, for a small fee.
  • In The Witcher, Geralt encounters the Order Of The Flaming Rose, led by Jacques De Aldersberg. They were an arm of the Corrupt Church of the Eternal Fire dedicated to protecting the commonfolk from monsters. Geralt has the option of siding with them, against them, or staying out of the conflict with the Scoia'tael altogether. They turn up in the sequels as well, having been taken on by Radovid in the second game, and have been disbanded by the third, though several rogue members appear in the Hearts Of Stone expansion.
  • The Legend of Zelda has the Knights of Hyrule, devoted to protecting the land from evil creatures. Unfortunately, by the time of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past the order has disappeared almost completely.

    Web Comics 
  • Rumors of War brings us the Order of Orion, which falls somewhere between Heroes "R" Us and Weird Trade Union. We aren't sure what they do exactly, except that they recruit heroes, fund exploration and mining operations, and have some hand in maritime trade. We don't know the conditions under which the cast were recruited, and we don't know what function they serve in the Order.
  • The Order of the Stick: The eponymous Order of the Stick is not an example itself; however, the Sapphire Guard is an order of paladins dedicated to safeguarding a tear in the fabric of the universe.
  • The Order of the Black Dog was founded in the 1920s by a couple of investigators who survived an encounter with a certain spectral horror, and they worked closely with the Special Investigations Unit, which gradually took over their functions and led to the group's disbandment in the 60s. Then in the 2030s Julia King blackmails one agent into helping her restart the Order.
  • Skin Horse has the National Notary Association, who do their best to keep the wheels of society spinning (mostly through paperwork) while training their acolytes in the martial arts. Unity is requested to join them, partaking in their deadly trials (and more paperwork).

    Web Original 
  • Piecing Together the Ashes: Reconstructing the Old World Order has the Tuckerite Order of the Swastika. Founded in the months after the Deluge by a reformed Neo-Nazi (who had a Heel Realization after a Hispanic doctor saved him from radiation poisoning), it has since grown into an international relief and aid organization similar to the Red Cross. The use of the swastika in its name and imagery as it now does good are a deliberate in-universe Take That! at the founder's former beliefs.

    Western Animation 
  • Despite never being called such, the Justice League fits the description. Dedicated to maintaining world security and justice and highly exclusive (so much that Aquaman was the only superhero to join the original lineup until Unlimited—and only in an alternate timeline). Even after they expand (by invitation only), they maintain strict membership policies, as Huntress' example demonstrates.
  • The Order of the White Lotus from Avatar: The Last Airbender plays this straight. A secret society dedicated to the martial arts and pai sho, they originally resembled a sort of cross between a social club and an underground railroad. They rose to prominence during the end of the Hundred Year War and, by the time of The Legend of Korra, had shed the "secret" part and apparently much of the exclusivity of their membership requirements and become a Red Shirt Army in the service of the Avatar.
  • Tales of Arcadia:
    • Trollhunters: The Janus Order, a secret society of changelings who have infiltrated human society in order to further their goal of freeing Gunmar from the Darklands and helping him Take Over the World.
    • 3Below: The Zeron Brotherhood, a group of elite bounty hunters, who jointly serve as The Heavy in Season 1 as they hunt Aja and Krel for the price General Morando put on their heads.
    • Wizards (2020): The Arcane Order, a group of primordial demigods and their servants, who seek to restore what they perceive as balance to the world by destroying humanity.

    Real Life