You were challenged to a duel, and circumstances compelled you to accept. In the hypothetical reality where this happens duels are legal and you are able-bodied, not elderly, nor ill. Duels in this world work like this: The challenger issues the challenge, the other party accepts. The person who accepted chooses the weapons both parties will use. The challenger then chooses the terms of the duel, to blood, to wounding (meaning a wound severe enough to prevent one from continuing the fight), or to death. The duelists fight the next day in level, grassy square 20 feet to a side. There is a fence surrounding the dueling grounds that is locked until the fight is over. Going beyond the terms of the duel will result in stiff penalties, including fines and likely jail time. Neither fighter is allowed to wear armor of any kind and medical personnel are nearby for when the fight is over.
You have no way of knowing which condition your opponent will choose, and the two of you are roughly equal when it comes to physical strength and endurance. You may choose any weapon that can be carried and used by a single person* from automatic rifles to pointed sticks. With all this in mind, what weapons will you choose?
For myself, I’d fight with spears. They’re good weapons for novices (which I am) and I think it would be relatively easy to strike in a way that would only draw blood or injure without killing, while also being able to kill if need be.
*No explosives, incendiaries, chemical agents, biological agents, animals, sci-fi weapons, or fantasy weapons.
I don’t know what the best choice is, but one of the worst choices ever is bullwhips (or any kind of whip really). There is a scene in one of the Underworld movies (the second one, I think) which looks cool as hell cinematically, but defies all logic. In the scene, one of the vampires has a whip in each hand and he is fending off a lycan attack. So basically his plan is to make them as angry as possible before they run in and eat his face off?? Great plan dude.
Spear was my first thought as well. It’s capable of lots of different ways of fighting and I’ve done a little bit of quarter staff work. A glaive might be a good alternative as well.
I’ve done knife fighting as well and everyone walks away bloody so even the winner lose. About the only alternative to the spear would be a hatchet you can mostly use it like a hammer but at least with it sharp you’ve got an easier way to s to get to first blood.