Unbound Worlds' Annual 'Cage Match' Lets Fans Vote on the Deadliest Sci-Fi/Fantasy Characters

Tuesday, 21 March 2017 - 3:10PM
American Gods
Game of Thrones
Tuesday, 21 March 2017 - 3:10PM
Unbound Worlds' Annual 'Cage Match' Lets Fans Vote on the Deadliest Sci-Fi/Fantasy Characters
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Immortal questions, like "Who would win in a fight, Daenerys of Game of Thrones or Mr. Wednesday from American Gods?" are being answered, bracket by bracket, by the folks at Unbound Worlds. Like a literary Super Mario Smash Bros, their annual Cage Match pits famous fictional characters against one another in a battle royale with only one victor. The best part is that the winners are decided by you, the people—you can vote in this week's matches by going to the Unbound Worlds site and casting your lot on who's deadlier (or more cunning).

In the meantime, the folks at UW went through the trouble of creating detailed statistics and even descriptions of the lead-ups to each of the fights. Here are some of our favorite bracket matches so far:

ROUND 1: Shai-Hulud of Dune vs. Devi of The Name of the Wind

This one seems pretty clear-cut. Devi, the flirtatious, ruthless mage and money lender from Patrick Rothfuss' fantasy novel The Name of the Wind, may be a devious, slippery figure, but slipperiness has nothing on the towering, thousand-ton death machine known as Shai-Hulud, aka The Maker, aka a sandworm from Frank Herbert's Dune.

NAME: Shai-Hulud
  • Really big
  • Too tough to be killed by any weapon save atomics or massive electrical shocks
  • Backed up by Fremen warriors who worship it
  • Water kills it
  • Tends to get distracted when vibrations call it off to defend spice sands

  • Has a strong aptitude for both Alchemy and Sympathy
  • Has a vast reservoir of arcane magical knowledge
  • Is clever, business-like, and talented
  • Her fondness for Kvothe
  • Physical combat is not her strong suit

But surprise, surprise, no one really cares about sandworms. They're just giant, destructive megafauna without much personality. In an upset, Devi wins the fight.


ROUND 2: John Perry of Old Man's War vs. Kell Maresh of A Darker Shade of Magic

Fans of Old Man's War know the premise: when you reach age 65, you have the choice to sign up to join the Colonial Defense Force, a mysterious organization that no one ever returns from. John Perry joins up at age 75 and discovers the secret: when you get recruited, you get your consciousness transferred into a new, cybernetically enhanced body so you can fight aliens. A Darker Shade of Magic, on the other hand, is about the magician Kell, who travels between different parallel versions of London as an ambassador (and a smuggler). Magic usually trumps science, but John Perry is literally an intergalactic soldier trained to fight aliens with a high-tech machine gun. 


NAME: John Perry
  • Enhanced body with heightened reflexes, senses, and abilities
  • BrainPal, an implanted computer giving the owner tactical advantages on the battlefield
  • War Suit, a nanotech unitard that hardens under impact

  • Works better as part of a team
  • Still adjusting to his new mods

NAME: Kell Maresh
  • Able to communicate with blood, where magic resides
  • Can travel between parallel worlds
  • Can exercise some degree of control over blood
  • Can be stubborn and overprotective
  • Exhibits some occasional poor judgment
In another surprise victory, Kell takes the day, proving that it doesn't matter how much heat you pack, magic is way more versatile, powerful, and all-around deadly.

ROUND 2 WINNER: Kell Maresh

ROUND 3: Tom Bombadil of Lord of the Rings vs. Mr. Wednesday of American Gods

This one is happening this week, and boy, oh boy, we're going to come out and say that Tom Bombadil needs to die. After defeating Terry Pratchett's The Luggage, the last bit of good humor we felt toward Bombadil is gone. Apart from some suspect rhymes and a jarring departure from the already meandering plotline of Fellowship, Bombadil's portrayal as an ageless, semi-omnipotent being that just, you know, hangs out while Gandalf and the rest of the crew save the world really grinds our gears. Though Mr. Wednesday may be a manipulative, amoral puppet master grasping for cosmic power, at least he's interesting.

NAME: Tom Bombadil
  • Is unaffected by the One Ring
  • Is ageless, possibly immortal
  • Exercises great power with little effort
  • His voice defeats enchantments
  • Seems to be bound to the Old Forest
  • Is a bit unreliable
  • Oblivious to concerns of mortals

NAME: Mr. Wednesday
  • Is literally a god
  • Is an unparalleled community organizer
  • Has a fairly impressive bodyguard

  • His existence is threatened by waning belief
  • He's seen better days


Get in on the action!

If you want a recap of last week's matches (including Daenerys vs. Mr. Wednesday, go here—they've got the post-battle analyses, as well as the final vote counts!
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