In S7E6:

The Night King throws a big spear at Viserion, killing him.

Taking in account how big the spear is, how far he threw it and...

how difficult is to pierce dragon skin

...we deduce that a ballista would be needed to achieve such a throw.

That means that the Night King (or White Walkers in general) must be incredibly strong.

However in some episodes we see Jon Snow sword fighting white walkers and blocking their sword attacks.

If they are so incredibly strong, wouldn't be impossible to block a sword attack?

  • 3
    The Night King is magic...
    – Paulie_D
    Aug 22, 2017 at 9:17
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    Not asking how he achieved it, but how would someone be able to block him in a sword attack. Edited my question
    – Elerium115
    Aug 22, 2017 at 9:18
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    Jon can block them because he has Valyrian steel swords. Other swords burst into shards on contact with their weapons. See Hardhome for reference, Jon lost his sword temporarily and tried to block the blow with a wildling sword, it burst into shards. Jon then desperately tried to parry the next blow with his own sword, which worked, and both the attacker and defender looked surprised.
    – Aegon
    Aug 22, 2017 at 9:32
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    I'd not make so many assessments about the power of Others. They have more physical strength than men but not something supernatural. Their weapons must be sharp enough to pierce a dragon's hide. In any case, There is no indication that show tried to establish Dragonhide is nigh impenetrable as the books have done
    – Aegon
    Aug 22, 2017 at 9:34
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    We also don't know if it was the speed/power of the javelin or it's icey magical properties as to why it harmed the dragon so much. Aug 22, 2017 at 9:55

3 Answers 3


Observe that we have not seen the same character throw the ice spear and engage in sword combat. The Night King threw the spears, but we've only seen White Walkers in sword combat.

Notice how the White Walkers were carrying spears (the initial shot of the Night King when Jon and his Merry Men were stuck on the rock), but they were not throwing them.
If the Night King and his Walkers were all equally skilled at spear throwing, there would have been no reason for the Night King to throw them all. They could've thrown all of them at the same time.

There simply isn't any evidence (currently) to support your claim. And if your question about how the Night King specifically fares in sword combat, that violates the future works policy, because we simply cannot know at this time.


how difficult is to pierce dragon skin

The dragon which was killed is Viserion, which is the smallest and therefore, the weakest amongst the three brothers. So, probably the same might not be able to pierce Drogon's skin.

As Dragon hide is considered very strong and thick from various SciFi literature, we can say that the Night King's spear must have contained very powerful magic or probably the Night King is very proficient at Javelin throw or in combat in general.

If they are so incredibly strong, wouldn't be impossible to block a sword attack?

Do not generalize the Night King with the White Walkers. It is a God-Human relationship. Night King is the one who created the existing White Walkers. So, he must be definitely exponentially powerful than the ones he created/resurrected.

  • 1
    "the Night King's spear must have contained very powerful magic" Qyburns ballista proves that magic is not necessary, as his bolt was not magic and pierced Drogon's skin (not even just Viserion's!). The throwing force of the spear and the fact that the ice does not shatter may be magically explained, but not necessarily the penetration itself.
    – Flater
    Aug 29, 2017 at 11:58
  • @Flater - "Magic is not neccessary" - yeah, if you can throw as hard as a massive double-strung ballista with bolts bigger than humans. I'd say there's more evidence that magic is involved (the Night King being a magical creature), than the Night King being physically able to generate that kind of force. Aug 29, 2017 at 15:48
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    @PoloHoleSet: My previous comment explicitly argued that the force of throwing the spear may be magically enhanced. Your reply does not make sense. You seem to have stopped reading my comment halfway. And even then, the original quote I responded to (and mentioned in the comment) focuses on the spear containing magic, rather than he who threw the spear. Those are two very different things.
    – Flater
    Aug 29, 2017 at 15:50
  • @Flater - neither does yours. So it would have magical propulsion, magical hardening to prevent it from shattering, but not magic to allow it to penetrate dragon armor more easily? Seems kind of an arbitrary allocation of what probably is and is not magic. That spear cut through the dragon like butter. My comment made more sense than yours, but that's just my opinion. Aug 29, 2017 at 15:53
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    @PoloHoleSet: I said "not necessary". I did not say "proven to not be the case". Qyburn's ballista proves that magic is not necessary for an object to penetrate a dragon's skin.
    – Flater
    Aug 29, 2017 at 15:54

In addition to what the other responses say about the Night King being superior to the others and a whole lot of magic, remember we also only see Jon Snow fight them using a Valyrian Steel blade, which is also magic, or at least must be slightly magic because it doesn't shatter against their blows like the blades of the other Night's Watch do.

It is therefore possible that in addition to resisting the magical properties of the White Walkers' weapons, the magic in the Valyrian Steel halts the momentum of the blow.

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