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Battle Royale: Gandalf vs. Dumbledore
Battle Royale is a weekly segment that pits two famous finctional characters and tries to figure out who would win in a one on one fight. The rules are simple, contestants are judged in 5 different categories: Attack, Defense, Special Abilites, Equipment, and Overall Experience. Whoever wins the majority of the five is the victor. This week’s showdown: Gandalf vs. Dumbledore. The two wizards have been contending for the number one mage spot for a while now. When you hear the word wizard one of these two guys is sure to pop up in your mind. They might look pretty similar, but which one would win in an all out brawl?
It’s hard to gauge which wizard has more powerful magic. They’ve both displayed very powerful magical attacks in the movies, books, and video games. Honestly if they both only relied on magic they would probably tie for this category. Their fight would end in the classic wizard duel tie, where both give everything they’ve got, but their spells meet in the middle, damaging no one. But what Gandalf has that Dumbledore doesn’t is his sword. It gives him an upper edge in melee combat, and if for some reason he ever lost his staff he’s got another talent to rely on. Dumbledore, on the other hand, would be a frail old man without his wand.
Determining a winner for defense is difficult in the same way attack is. Both wizards have shown excellent magical abilities that ward off harm from themselves and their allies. Both wizards could fend off probably the same amount of damage with the use of their spells. But we’ve seen Gandalf block magical and mundane attacks with the help of not only his sword, but also his staff. Both of these weapons create a more rounded fighter that’s able to block incoming attacks easier. In addition Gandalf, in both the books and the movies, seems to be a little lighter on his feet. The increased mobility and stronger defensive weapons give Gandalf the upper hand.
Both wizard’s special abilities are their magic. And we’ve seen that their power over the arcane arts is probably about the same. But Dumbledore can do more with magic than Gandalf can. In the Harry Potter world the list of spells goes on and on and on. Dumbledore can manipulate his surroundings, transmute, charm, curse… pretty much any kind of magic Dumbledore has at his disposal Gandalf, on the other hand, is pretty much stuck with only offensive and defensive spells. Dumbledore’s larger variety of powers and magic makes him the clear winner of the special abilities category.
Special Abilities: Dumbledore
Gandalf has his sword and staff which are stronger than Dumbledore’s wand. Sadly, outside of those two weapons Gandalf doesn’t have that much more equipment. He relies on mundane devices, a backpack with supplies, and maybe a horse to ride on. Dumbledore is from a universe that’s filled with all sorts of gadgets. Harry Potter’s world uses magic in everyday objects, almost anything you pick up has some kind of magic embedded in it. At the same time the magical mounts that Dumbledore has at his disposal would beat even the strongest horse Gandalf could find.
Experience and trainging are a huge part of being a wizard. Both Dumbledore and Gandalf have had a life full of great achievements. Throughout both of their stories we’ve gotten glimpses of their past adventures. It’s hard to figure out which one has had more experience, because neither are the main character in their books and movies. But we know that Gandalf has spent his entire life protecting the entire world of Middle-Earth, fighting every force of evil imaginable. And we know that Dumbledore has spent the majority of his life as the principile of a wizard high-school. An important job, but not one that neccessarily hones your fighting skills.
Dumbledore brings a superior list of spells to work with, and gadgets and weapons that Gandalf could only dream of. But at the end of the day Gandalf has been around the block a little longer than Dumbledore, and is still in better fighting shape. His primary weapons, a sword and a staff, make him a force to be reckoned with even without the use of magic. In a one on one cage match between Gandalf and Dumbledore, my money would be on the white wizard.