What If Eren Won The Final Battle? An Alternate Ending for Attack on Titan

Attack on Titan captivated audiences with its thrilling story of humanity’s struggle for survival against the man-eating Titans. However, many fans were divided on the ending, which saw Eren Yeager defeated by an alliance led by his childhood friends. But what if Eren had emerged victorious instead? Here is one imagined alternate ending if Eren won the battle for freedom.

How Eren Could Have Won

The Titan Shifter Marks

Eren was extremely powerful as the Founding Titan, so how could he have lost? There were a few key oversights and mistakes on Eren’s part that cost him victory:

  • Not taking his friends’ Titan powers: As the Founding Titan, Eren could have altered Eldians at will. He could have prevented his fellow shifters like Armin and Reiner from using their Titan abilities, removing the main threats against him. However, Eren wanted to give them freedom to fight back.
  • Not guarding the port better: Eren left Floch and the Yaegerists to guard the port without additional help. But a few Colossal Titans could have made it impossible for the alliance to take the harbor and pursue Eren.
  • Letting the Rumbling stop when Zeke died: Zeke’s death should not have automatically stopped the Rumbling, since Ymir and the Founder’s power now obeyed Eren’s will. This oversight allowed the alliance to focus on Eren.

Correcting any one of these mistakes could have led to an Eren victory. Now let’s explore two alternate endings had Eren won.

Ending 1: Eren’s Sorrowful Freedom

In this ending, Eren wins by fixing the mistakes above, stopping the alliance through force but without killing them directly. With no one left to stop him, the full Rumbling succeeds in flattening the world outside Paradis. However, Eren finds little joy in his victory.

With all his friends dead in battle, Eren is devastated. The weight of his global genocide crushes his spirit, despite achieving freedom for Paradis. Eren removes the Titan powers from the Eldian people, as planned. He then goes into hiding, leaving Queen Historia to rule Paradis as he had hoped.

At first, Eldia prospers, joining the modern world free from oppression. But new conflicts inevitably arise over time between different groups of Eldians. Eren’s Rumbling bought temporary peace, but human nature leads Paradis to fractionalize once more. The cycle of hatred persists, and Eternal peace remains impossible. In the end, Eren’s sacrifice and sins fail to end hatred forever.

Ending 2: Eren the Villain Unleashed

In this ending, Eren embraces the villainous persona he adopted leading up to the Rumbling. With the alliance crushed, Eren completes the Rumbling and achieves utter domination.

He then uses the Founder’s powers to erase the memories of all Eldians and Paradisans related to the Titans, the Rumbling, and the outside world. With ignorance and freedom from the past, Eldians are able to explore the outside world through fresh eyes, innocently enjoying the beauty of nature and lands once marred by war.

Eren takes the burden of these terrible memories onto himself alone. Having secured freedom and peace for his people, he goes into exile, cursed to bear the full knowledge of the sins he committed for Paradis’s sake.

This “villain” Eren is the sacrifice that buys Paradis true salvation. By erasing history and memories, he lifts the curse of knowledge that breeds hatred and makes peace temporary. Only Eren is condemned to carry that unbearable knowledge for eternity.

What This Says About Human Nature

Eren Yeager
Human Nature

Whether tragic or villainous, these alternate endings suggest that hatred and conflict are inherent to mankind. Eren’s drastic measures only buy temporary peace due to human nature. Without fundamentally altering human nature, it seems for Attack on Titan that permanent peace is tragically unattainable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Could Eren have beaten Armin and the alliance without taking away their Titan shifting abilities?

It would have been very difficult. Armin as the Colossal Titan along with the other shifting abilities of the alliance posed the biggest threat to Eren. Without removing their powers, Eren would have had to fight them directly in a massive Titan battle royale, which could have gone either way. Preventing them from shifting at all would have been a safer path to victory for Eren.

What would Eren’s friends think of him if he did win and carry out the Rumbling?

They would undoubtedly be devastated and see Eren as a genocidal villain. Mikasa in particular would be incredibly hurt after dedicating herself to protecting Eren. We can even imagine alternate versions of the final fight where Eren has no choice but to kill some of his friends directly, adding to the tragedy. Their memory and resentment of Eren would linger on in the survivors.

Could Eren have controlled the Titans forever after starting the Rumbling?

No, he would eventually have died from the Curse of Ymir after 13 years. However, once set in motion, the Rumbling would continue moving forward under its own momentum even after Eren’s death. So Eren only needed to live long enough to flatten the world outside Paradis and destroy any forces left to threaten the island.

What happens to Historia and her child if Eren wins?

As Queen of Paradis, Historia and her heirs would likely rule over Eldia for many generations as the monarch. Historia probably would have tried talking Eren out of the Rumbling if possible, but once complete, she would be left to lead what remains of the Eldian people into a new era. She would have a heavy burden trying to rebuild after such devastation.

Could the outside world ever recover if the full Rumbling was carried out?

It’s unlikely. The Rumbling appears to flatten the entire world outside of Paradis, destroying all cities, infrastructure, and populations. Eldia on Paradis might be able to slowly expand and recolonize over decades or centuries. But the massive loss of life and knowledge worldwide would set civilization back immensely. The scale of the Rumbling makes the recovery of the rest of the world doubtful.

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