Attack on Titan recently concluded the first half of its final season, and the anime’s last outing is off to an action-packed start. Opening with the Survey Corps’ invasion of Liberio, it feels like season 4 has been chock full of intense battles that will no doubt leave fans questioning who they should be rooting for.

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And although this series is no stranger to battles, it seems like the fight sequences are becoming even grander during its final chapter. Perhaps that’s just the result of the characters’ world expanding, but these fights set the bar high for when the second part of the season arrives.

10 Marley Vs. The Mid-East Alliance Showed Marley’s Ruthless Ways

Armored Titan vs Middle-East Alliance, Attack on Titan season 4

The first episode of Attack on Titan‘s fourth season kicks off with a battle between Marley and the Mid-East Alliance. And although fans won’t care much about the conflict between the two groups (it has little to do with the central plot of the story), it does make for a show-stopping start to the final season.

Not only does this opening battle finally give fans a taste of what this anime would be like with more advanced technology and weaponry, but it reveals Marley’s ruthless methods of handling its enemies. Zeke quite literally making it rain Titans upon the Mid-East Alliance is probably the highlight of the fight, but Reiner and Gabi Braun have some equally impressive moments in the spotlight.

9 Eren Vs. The War Hammer Titan Surprised Everyone With A New Titan Shifter

The early episodes of Attack on Titan season 4 see Eren Jaeger launching an assault on Liberio, the internment zone where his father grew up. He does so while nations around the world are visiting Marley for a festival, interrupting the speech of Willy Tybur — a member of the family who holds the War Hammer Titan.

As one might expect, Eren’s sudden appearance results in the War Hammer Titan transforming to stop him. Given that fans hadn’t seen this Titan Shifter before this moment, it’s an exciting development. And Eren puts up a decent fight against this powerful foe (even if Mikasa had to step in to save him in the end).

8 The Raid On Liberio Showed How Much The Scouts Have Changed

Attack On Titan season 4, Raid on Liberio

Although Eren is acting alone when he infiltrates Liberio, the Scouts conduct a raid on the internment zone in order to retrieve him. Seeing them in action after the four-year time skip is truly something, especially given the new equipment and weapons they’re sporting. Watching them go head to head with Marley’s Titan Shifters underscores how far they’ve come since the anime’s first season, back when the majority of the main characters could hardly hold their own against the huge creatures.

This battle also highlights how much of their humanity the Scouts have sacrificed over the course of this series. Season 4 flips the script on them, pushing viewers to empathize with the Eldians living in Marley as much as the characters they already know and love. Watching Armin destroy Liberio’s port, or seeing the Scouts kill innocent people in the crossfire, is as heartbreaking as it is suspenseful. The raid on Liberio hits all the right emotional beats in addition to delivering on the action.

7 Gabi Shot Sasha & Proved How High The Stakes Were

Sasha Blouse Death Scene

In the aftermath of the Survey Corps’ raid on Liberio, Gabi boards their airship hellbent on revenge — and finds it in killing Sasha Braus, one of the few remaining members of the 104th Cadet Corps. It’s a continuation of the Scouts’ fight with Liberio, and a fairly one-sided one at that (though many of the newer soldiers immediately resort to violence against Gabi and Falco).

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Even if qualifying this as a fight is a stretch, there’s no denying this moment has a huge impact on the season — and the conflict between Paradis Island and Marley — moving forward. Not only does it emphasize how high the stakes are, but it eventually leads to Gabi’s own battle with her beliefs. And that’s one of the most interesting pieces of season 4 so far.

6 The Jaegerists’ Betrayal Sparked Deeper Questions & Conversations

Floch betrayal, Attack on Titan season 4

While Paradis Island and Marley wage war on one another, there’s another huge problem to contend with during Attack on Titan season 4: the tensions within the walls and within the various factions of the military itself. Starting with the betrayal of the Anti-Marleyan Volunteers and coming to a head with the murder of Dhalis Zachary, the conflict within Paradis Island’s own forces runs deep. It makes for a suspenseful political layer this season, especially once the Jaegerists reveal themselves.

Watching the Jaegerists successfully outmaneuver Commander Hange and Commander Pixis makes for a surprising development, especially given Eren’s involvement in the group’s plans. Although this fight has been slower and more drawn out than the anime’s physical battles, it’s sparked deeper questions and conversations, proving Attack on Titan isn’t afraid to go there.

5 Niccolo Confronted Gabi & Showed That The People On Both Sides Of The War Aren’t All That Different

Niccolo’s confrontation with Gabi during “Children of the Forest” is mostly a verbal fight, but it drives home the messaging Attack on Titan has been pushing throughout its fourth season. If nothing else, Gabi and Niccolo’s screaming match highlights that the people on each side of this war aren’t all that different from one another. Both lament the people they’ve lost, and it’s emotional — but it also proves there’s a commonality to be found between the Eldians fighting for Paradis Island and those fighting for Marley.

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Of course, Niccolo does physically assault and threaten Gabi during this scene, making it as suspenseful as it is emotional. Fortunately, both parties come out relatively unscathed.

4 Eren & Armin Threw Punches, Adding Tension To Their Relationship

There’s been a huge disconnect between Eren and his friends since season 4 started, but things take a disheartening turn during “Savagery,” when Eren reaches out to Armin and Mikasa, only to offer them harsh words that will no doubt prove a turning point in the trio’s relationship. Mikasa is too heartbroken and stunned at Eren’s behavior to defend herself, but Armin reacts enough for the both of them. It’s a little satisfying watching Armin throw the first punch, especially with how Eren has been treating his comrades during recent episodes.

Unfortunately, Armin’s really no match for Eren, who returns the violence in kind. There may be more to Eren’s behavior than he’s letting on, but that doesn’t make it any easier to watch him hurt his childhood friend. It’s an intense and emotional moment all around.

3 Levi Made The Tough Decision To Kill His Men

Attack on Titan season 4, Levi vs Titans

Levi killing Titans is nothing new, but it’s clear the revelation that these monsters were once humans left him shaken. And watching Zeke turn his own men into Titans takes his discomfort to another level.

During “Savagery,” Levi is forced to choose between his own survival — and fulfilling Erwin’s final command — and leaving his men unharmed. He quickly decides on the former, but it’s clear the decision is a difficult one for him to make, marking one of the first times fans see Levi uncomfortable with killing Titans. And even if the action itself happens off-screen, it’s one of his best scenes to date.

2 Levi Fought The Beast Titan Again

It’s no secret that Levi and Eren’s half-brother have it out for one another, so the two were bound to clash again before Attack on Titan came to a close. The last time they fought, Levi made quick work of Zeke’s Beast Titan. Of course, he was pretty angry over losing Commander Erwin and his comrades.

And it’s possible Levi is even more enraged during his second fight with Zeke, which sees him pursuing the man after his men are turned into Titans. During the penultimate episode of season 4 part 1, Levi once again brings the Beast Titan down with relative ease. With hatred radiating off of both characters, however, it’s certainly one of season 4’s most intense action moments.

1 Marley Invaded Paradis Island & Left The Story On A Cliffhanger

Pieck tricks Eren, Attack on Titan season 4 finale

Just when it seems no one can stop Eren and his band of followers, Pieck arrives and throws everything into chaos, leaving viewers on quite the cliffhanger heading into the second half of season 4 (which doesn’t arrive until 2022).

Despite Pieck’s insistence that she’s seeking an ally, it’s clear she’s deceiving Eren — especially when Galliard and forces from Marley arrive. Galliard’s brief encounter with Eren is exciting, but it does leave fans wanting more. It is an unfinished battle, after all.

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