The dueling feature in Hogwarts Mystery is, as of now, limited to certain events. The events are available for a limited amount of time, and the object is to win a certain amount of duels to unlock rewards in the form of gems, coins, energy, and/or exclusive clothing or accessories.

Note: The third dueling event started August 8, 2018. So far, it appears that players start with a single ticket. If you win the duel, you win 75 coins. If you lose the duel, you lose your ticket, but it replenishes after three hours. You can also choose the purchase a single ticket for 40 gems. Finally, it takes 20 wins to win all the rewards, with the final reward being an outfit in your House colors. However, the description below was true for the first two dueling events, and it could be true for future dueling events.

In a dueling event, you start with three tickets. When you win a duel, you retain your tickets, and earn one point towards the rewards in the event, as well as four energy bolts. When you lose a duel, you lose one of your three tickets.

Some people have received versions of this event where the tickets refresh every 24 hours, but if you are not so lucky, once you have lost your tickets, you have to pay 120 gems to receive three more.

This screen is not what you want to see.

120 gems is a lot, so here are a couple of ways to increase your chances of winning.

Dueling 101

It is not unreasonable to compare a duel to a game of rock-paper-scissors. You can choose one of three stances–Aggressive, Sneaky and Defensive–where Aggressive beats Sneaky, Sneaky beats Defensive, and Defensive beats Aggressive.

Choose your stance.

When you have picked a stance, it is revealed what your opponent picked, and either you win, you lose, or it’s a draw.

If you win, you get to pick one of the spells under a certain stance (see table below), and trace the spell on your screen to cast it. If you fail the tracing, you are offered however many extra chances you need to get it right.

If you lose, your opponent will instead get to cast one of the spells under their stance.

If you draw, the one of you who has the least health will heal by 2 points.

Unbalanced stats

Note: The health appears to be balanced in the latest (third) dueling event. However, this is based on the firsthand observations of a half-dozen players who each completed 1-5 duels. It is possible not all players will receive the same first of the dueling event, since the second event had two different version.

The dueling, as of now, is quite unbalanced. Your opponent will start out with 80 health, whereas you only have 40. This means that your spells will appear to do less damage to your opponent, than theirs do to you.

However, your opponent is, as of now, always AI (Artificial Intelligence). The avatar and Facebook profile picture belongs to someone who plays the game, but a computer is controlling them in the duel. They don’t always use the most effective spell in their arsenal–indeed, they have been known to heal themselves when their health is already full.

Your first opponent will have lower stats (attribute points) than you, but the next opponent will be closer to you in stats, and soon you will be fighting opponents with the same stats as you.

Stats are important, as they can increase the effect your spells have. Each spell is associated with a certain attribute (again, refer to the table below), and for every extra point you have on that attribute, your spell will do 2 bonus damage. So if your Knowledge is 12, and your opponent’s is 10, your Expelliarmus will do 4 extra damage.

My empathy: 22. My opponent’s: 21. Empathy bonus: 2

Bear in mind that if you are a low year but have high attributes, you will be pitted against players with similar attributes as yourself. This means you may be fighting someone who is a year or two above you, and who therefore has access to a lot better spells than you do (for example Depulso). So if you have leveled up your attributes a lot, but not progressed the story correspondingly, your duels will be more difficult.

How to win duels

With the basics out of the way, here are some tips and tricks on how you can win as many duels as possible. Bear in mind that none of these strategies are 100% guaranteed, but they do increase your chances.

Finding the pattern

One way to win is to find which pattern your opponent follows, and counter it. There appears to be two different kinds of opponents, with different patterns to their dueling.

The Spammer

In your first few duels, your opponent is likely to pick one stance over and over again. The approach to this opponent is quite easy. Once you have figured out which stance your opponent is most likely to use, just use whichever stance will beat it. So if your opponent is Aggressive most of the time, you can pick Defensive and almost always beat them.

The Cyclic Shifter

Your later opponents will likely be trickier to find a pattern to, as they will not just use one stance, but alternate between two or all of them. Even these opponents do have a pattern, however, and if you can find it, you can counter it.

Spamming Aggressive

Note: Some comments on reddit indicate this is no longer effective. However, another comment disagrees. Depulso does less damage, but it’s still a strong spell.

If you want an easier way to win, instead of trying to find a pattern, you can take a page from the Spammer’s book. Especially if you have access to Depulso, this is a very effective way to win.

The strategy is simple: choose the Aggressive stance, and pick Depulso if you win. When you are around half your health, you may want to switch to Defensive to heal yourself. The Wiggenweld potion is your best bet for healing, as it guarantees 15 healing, whereas Episkey only guarantees 10, with a chance of an extra 10.

Don’t be Sneaky

You want to avoid the Sneaky stance if your opponent has access to Depulso, since one hit with Depulso will bring your health down by half. Your opponent need only win with Aggressive twice, and choose Depulso, to win the duel.

The different dueling spells

For easy reference, here is a list of all the moves you learn in year 1-4, their effect and which attribute they are associated with. Choose wisely.

Aggressive

Spell Year Effect Attribute Chance
Throw Vial 1 10 Damage Courage
Expelliarmus 1 10 Damage Knowledge Stun 1 turn
Incendio 2 5 Damage Courage Burn 2 turns (-10 each)
Depulso 3 17 Damage Empathy
Confringo 4 5 Damage Empathy Stun 2 turns

Sneaky

Spell Year Effect Attribute Chance
Throw Vial 1 10 Damage Courage
Rictusempra 1 5 Damage Empathy Stun 1 turn
Flipendo 3 15 Damage Courage
Immobulus 4 10 Damage Courage Stun 1 turn

Defensive

Spell Year Effect Attribute Chance
Throw Vial 1 10 Damage Courage
Wiggenweld Potion 1 3 Heal +Heal 2 turns (+6 each) Empathy
Episkey 2 10 Heal Empathy Heal 2 turns (+5 each)
Pertificus Totalus 3 5 Damage Knowledge Stun 2 turns
Bombarda 4 5 Damage Courage Burn 1-2 turns (-10 each) Stun 1 turn

Credit to Nevac14 for helping out with some of these tips, and to Witches Unite for letting me borrow a picture!

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