Warning: There are spoilers ahead for “Game of Thrones.”
The Night King acquired a powerful new weapon on “Game of Thrones” season seven when he resurrected one of Daenerys’ dragons. So how will our human heroes be able to defeat the Night King and his White Walker lieutenants? We know of two surefire ways to kill the White Walkers (not to be confused with wights, as explained here).
Jon Snow, Sam Tarly, and Meera reed have all managed to kill a White Walker using one of two methods — dragonglass blades or Valyrian steel. But that’s not likely the only way to kill the magical beasts. With a war against the White Walkers on the horizon, here’s a look at the three ways characters could take them down.
On the second season of “Game of Thrones,” Sam Tarly killed a White Walker with a dragonglass dagger. He found a cache of these weapons at the Fist of the First Men, an ancient stronghold north of the Wall. Sam believes that the earliest men who lived in Westeros hid them there to use against White Walkers.
Dragonglass is simply another name for obsidian, or volcanic glass. Jon Snow mined an enormous amount of dragonglass while he was at Dragonstone, and has turned it into weapons. We saw characters like Jorah Mormont and Tormund Giantsbane fighting with them on the seventh season, though they were using it against the wights.
On season five’s “Hardhome,” Jon learned that Valyrian steel also kills White Walkers. Longclaw, the sword gifted to him by former Lord Commander Mormont, is made from Valyrian steel. This special type of metal is rare in Westeros because it can only be forged using magic.
The name is derived from Valyria — the ancient stronghold for a now-dead civilisation in Essos. Valyrian steel was forged in Valyria using dragonfire and spells. After the Doom struck Valyria, decimating the population and culture, and after dragons went temporarily extinct, there was no way for people to craft new Valyrian steel in Westero (though they can reforge existing blades).
Can dragons kill White Walkers?
We haven’t seen this theory tested on the show, but it makes sense to think dragon fire could kill a White Walker. Daenerys rode her dragons into the battle beyond the wall, but we didn’t see her specifically roast any White Walkers, only hoards of wights.
Regular fire doesn’t affect White Walkers — they literally walk right through it since they emanate a permanent chill. But since dragon fire is a required ingredient in Valyrian steel, and dragonglass literally has the word “dragon” in it, we believe a blast of flames from a dragon’s mouth might do damage to these mysterious other-worldly creatures.
For more on the differences between White Walkers and wights, read our explainer here.