One Piece has been running for two solid decades, and that’s a lot of time even by long-running manga standards. And for these whopping two decades, the show somehow managed to stay relevant. Yes, there might’ve been a few up and down spikes to the show’s performance along that period of time, but that still fails to shake the average One Piece fan’s faith in the series. This can mainly be attributed to the many aspects the manga excels at such as plot, world build..etc.
One of these said aspects is how the show manages to keep an equilibrium between predictability and unpredictability. A short two-panel long moment could drastically alter both the plotline and the way fans perceive the series. Here are 10 of those earth-shattering moments that changed One Piece forever.
10 Hachi Gets Shot By A World Noble
Hachi is a Fishman who used to be a part of Arlong’s crew, which means he was an antagonist at some point in the series. He was a previous slave under the World Nobels and his hatred for humans ran pretty deep till he found liberation later on.
During the Sabaody Archipelago arc, Hachi, now a friend of the Strawhats, was shot by a World Nobel. This incurred Luffy’s wrath and drove him into punching the world noble. Doing so would trigger a chain of events that changed everything for the Strawhats from that point on.
9 Robin Becomes A Strawhat Pirate
Robin is technically the only Strawhat who asked Luffy to join the crew; everyone else was invited by Luffy. Robin’s importance in the grand scheme of things could possibly be the second highest in the crew. Because in order to find One Piece, one would need to follow a predetermined route set by Roger – something that, coincidentally, Robin is pretty great at doing.
The path to the One Piece is a route that can only be discovered by reading all the road Poneyglyphs and as far as fans are concerned, Robin is the only person in the world who is capable of reading these Poneyglyphs.
8 Luffy accidentally Reveals His Identity To Ivankov
As fans all know, Luffy’s lips are really too loose. Entrusting him with vital information is a bad decision, to say the least. But oftentimes, such silly blunders could literally save lives.
Ivankov is a high ranking officer in the Revolutionary Army, and when Luffy disclosed his identity as Dragon’s son, the chances of his survival during the following instantly went a few notches up. Everyone knew that Luffy’s chances of escaping Impel Down without Ivankov’s help were nil.
7 Defeat & Divison At Sabaody Archipelago
The Sabaody Archipelago arc is one of the best One Piece arcs of all time. Yes, the arc might’ve been relatively shorter compared to other, more explosive storylines, but the amount of tension the arc involved couldn’t be replicated by any other arc.
Long story short, this was the arc where the Strawhats suffered a devastating defeat at the hands of Kuma. After what happened in Sabaody Archipelago, the Strawhats were separated. Little did fans know that the next time the beloved pirate crew would unite would be years later, following the game-changing timeskip .
6 The Paramount War Invalidates All Power Scales
Marineford went down as the most hyped arc in One Piece, and possibly in anime as a whole. Everything about this arc stood apart from its counterparts, and it certainly did serve as the perfect epilogue for the first half of the series.
The arc’s central conflict – the Paramount War – flipped everything fans thought they knew about the series. At least 80 people (if not a hundred!) who participated in the arc’s massive war were all stronger than Luffy, and yet he gave them all a fight to remember. The power scaling used by fans for the longest time became complete mumbo jumbo by the time of this arc’s conclusion.
5 Shanks Gives Luffy The Strawhat
Shanks bestowing the infamous straw hat to Luffy was the event that started everything. For all fans knew, Luffy was trained by Garp to become an outstanding marine. If it wasn’t for Shanks intervention, Luffy could’ve seriously became a marine and this would’ve led to a completely different story.
Assuming that he somehow did become a pirate, many other things would’ve turned out differently. such as mastering haki under Rayleigh’s tutelage.
4 Ace Hunts Down Blackbeard & Starts A Chain Reaction
After Teach’s betrayal, Ace went on a months-long hunt looking for him. This, in turn, triggered the domino effect which ultimately lead to the war of the most powerful pirates and Marines at the aforementioned Paramount War.
Had Ace not went on this hunt, many game-changing events wouldn’t have occurred. For one, neither he nor Whitebeard would’ve lost their lives in the ensuing battle in the Marineford Arc. If the latter never occurred, fans wouldn’t have gotten such a masterpiece of an arc.
3 The Death of Ace
The thing about One Piece is that the early on, the concept of death was always left untouched; the probability of someone losing their life in battle was almost nonexistent in this lighthearted adventure story. It’s because of this that nobody saw Ace’s death coming.
Fans took it for granted that Ace’s life was protected by the system, until it was too late. The act of killing off an important character as Ace means that nobody, regardless of how major of a role they may have, is safe.
2 Whitebeard Confirms The One Piece’s Existence
For the longest time, pirates went to the sea mostly to test their luck and enjoy life outside the law. Nobody truly knew whether the One Piece actually existed, but they still sailed out in the hopes finding it or something of equal value. And if it were just a myth, at least they’ll have had the adventure of a lifetime with crewmates who grew to become family.
But when Whitebeard confirmed the existence of this legendary treasure, not only did he rejuvenate the spirits of even the most jaded of veteran pirates, but he started a new grand age of piracy.
1 Roger’s Last Words
“My treasure? You want it, you can have it. I left it all in that place, go look for it!”
With these last words, Roger may have had his last breath but that was only after starting what is known as The Great Age of Pirates. Given everything that happened in the time since Roger’s death, it’s highly likely that the Marine who asked the pirate whether he had any last words lived a life of endless regrets. Roger’s death and ensuing legacy proved to be even more troublesome than when he was alive.
The epic series One Piece changed forever after certain major and unforgettable events occurred