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Basic Trope: Warring factions decide to settle things by having their most powerful champions duel.

  • Straight: King Bob and Queen Alice agree that whosever champion can win in a duel to the death claims victory in the war.
  • Exaggerated: God and The Devil make such a deal.
  • Downplayed: A small battle is settled this way after is is fought to a standstill that either side would have trouble breaking.
  • Justified:
    • Both sides want to avoid pointless bloodshed.
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    • It is a religious war, and they figure that whoever's champion God favors will win.
    • Both sides are convinced that they are going to lose.
  • Inverted: Bob and Alice's champions get into a fight, and it leads to a full-scale war.
  • Subverted: Bob says that he wants to end the war fast, even if it might mean things going worse in the end. Then he reveals his new secret weapon.
  • Double Subverted: ...then he reveals that it will be controlled by a third party, and used to enforce the finality of the duel's outcome.
  • Parodied:
    • Instead of a duel, the champions have an arm-wrestling competition.
    • There is massive brawling and argue over who gets to be the champion on both side. After a bloody civil war, each faction decides who enters the Combat by Champion... by champion.
    • There's a Delegation Relay of who fights in the battle, with the end result being that it's the two weakest members of each army fighting eachother; a grandma and a small child, respectively.
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  • Zig Zagged: The combat by champions is taken on an army-by-army basis. Queen Alice accepts, Emperor Evulz refuses, Baron Bloodlust fights in one, while the rebel forces pretend to accept and then kill the champion in his sleep.
  • Averted: No combat happens in-series: duels or otherwise.
  • Enforced: "We need to have the current war end soon to unify the currently revealed forces against a new threat."
  • Lampshaded:
  • Invoked:
  • Exploited:
    • Queen Alice agrees, then attacks while Bob's forces aren't expecting it.
    • King Bob sends a child to the duel, hoping that Alice's champion will be too guilt-ridden to attack.
  • Defied:
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    • King Bob offers to arrange a duel by champion, but Queen Alice refuses.
    • King Bob offers to arrange a duel by champion, but Queen Alice promptly snipes King Bob with a crossbow.
  • Discussed: "So, what do you think of duels as a way to settle religious wars?"
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed:
    • This is used in every major conflict, and Queen Alice's empire becomes overtly powerful because she has the best training program.
    • Bob is a poor loser, and uses his army to attack Alice immediately afterward anyway. It's a total slaughter on both sides.
  • Reconstructed: King Bob just ignores the challenge and insists on instead fighting it out with his full army. While poorly trained and equipped, his legions are expert guerrillas and have better logistics, allowing them to hold their own against Alice's legions.: after a long and bloody war dividing the kingdom between the two, they decide to finally settle things the old fashioned way.

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