This list proves to be a difficult piece for me to write, as I can’t stop crying. (ノД`)・゜・。 Putting together the list is easy enough. The hard part is remembering each scene. My chest started to tighten, my throat felt constricted, and the tears started welling. By the time I reached number 1 on my list, I was sobbing like crazy. 。゚(゚ノД`゚)゚。
So here are my top 10 most gut-wrenching scenes in ONE PIECE before the timeskip:

10. Sabo’s “Death”
The flashback of the 3 sworn brothers (Luffy, Ace & Sabo) is one of the most heart-warming arcs in ONE PIECE. You can really feel the strong bond between the 3 boys. So when Sabo “dies” because a fucking tenryuubito shoots him (damned bastard), I just yelled “No!” at the top of my lungs and started cursing the air blue for the tenryuubito to die.  My  heart broke when young Ace started sobbing at the news of his brother’s death.  (╯︵╰,)
I’m so glad that he’s not really dead.

9. Chopper Joins the Mugiwara Crew
Tony Tony Chopper is the cutest character in ONE PIECE. He’s just so adorable. His dark and painful past has made him suspicious of humans other than his first teacher and “father”, Dr. Hiluluk, and his second teacher, Doctorine. He just wants to belong and to be accepted for who he is.  He feels very happy when Luffy wants him as a nakama, but his insecurities prevents him from agreeing immediately.  When he finally agrees to join the Mugiwara Pirates (sobbing and howling at the same time), I was crying of happiness. And oh, isn’t the “sakura tree” farewell of Doctorine to Chopper just beautiful? (٭°̧̧̧ω°̧̧̧٭)

chopper joins strawhats2

8. Dr. Hiluluk’s Death
Dr. Hiluluk’s “death bed” speech is one of the best, if not the very best, in ONE PIECE. He charges Wapol’s castle and his army alone, preparing to die. His death speech is very inspiring and sad at the same time. ( ͒ ඉ .̫ ඉ ͒)
“Omaera ni wa, ore wa korosenei. Yo. Hito wa itsu shini to? Shinzou pisutoru de uchi ni kareta toki ni? Chigau. .[skipped lines] . . Hito ni wasurareta toki sa.”
Rough Translation: “You can’t kill me. Hey. When do you think a person dies? When his heart is shot by a pistol? No. . [skipped lines] . . A man dies when he is forgotten.”
Another one is: “Mattaku ii jinsei datta.”
Rough Translation: “That was a perfectly good life (that I lived).”

7. Dadan Punches Garp
Dadan is Luffy & Ace’s foster mother (also Sabo’s for a short time). She hated being forced to take care of the 2 unruly boys at first, but has no choice because she’s scared of Garp. As time goes on, however, she learns to genuinely love and care for them. One of the most heart-breaking scenes after the Marineford War is when Dadan attacks Garp and starts punching him. Garp is shocked to see Dadan cry, so he lets himself be beaten by her until he bleeds. She couldn’t accept the fact that Garp just let his grandsons be harmed (Ace to be killed and Luffy to be seriously injured). She questions Garp if his job is more important than family. o(╥﹏╥)o

6. Nami Stabs Herself
I seriously hated Nami at the beginning before her real situation was explained. When Arlong betrays her, she grabs a dagger and starts stabbing the Arlong tattoo on her upper arm.  This is perhaps the first most dramatic scene in ONE PIECE, in my opinion (sorry Usopp).  Nami finally swallows her pride and asks Luffy for help.  Luffy shouts “Atarimaedaaaaa!” (Naturally!).  Nami becomes a true Mugiwara Pirate at this point. (๑•́₋•̩̥̀๑)


5. Luffy & Usopp’s Battle
The time finally comes when Going Merry is too damaged to continue carrying the Mugiwara Pirates on their adventure. As the captain, Luffy decides with a heavy heart to replace Going Merry. Usopp goes into denial, since he is the most attached to the ship because it is from Kaya.  Usopp challenges Luffy into a battle.  He knows that he can never win against Luffy with pure strength alone.  He uses his talent for lies and deception, and the double-edged weapon Impact Dial from Skypiea to briefly gain the upper had.  It’s so hard to watch these best friends beating each other up.  (ఠ్ఠ ˓̭ ఠ్ఠ)

4. Robin’s “I Want to Live” Declaration
The Enies Lobby Arc is my most favourite in the pre-timeskip. I think that this is where the entire Mugiwara Pirates solidify their relationship as nakama; that they truly care for each other and will do anything and everything for one another.  Robin finally sheds her cool and distant demeanor, and truthfully cries, “Ikitai!” (I want to live!).  The rest of the Mugiwara Pirates, of course, respond to her cry by saving her.  Hell hath fury like the Mugiwara Pirates separated by force.  Robin finally finds true nakama who will risk everything to protect her.

3. Luffy’s “I Have My Friends” Realization
Oh. .・゜゜・(/。\)・゜゜・.My heart’s starting to really hurt now.  The normally cheerful Luffy sobbing like there’s no tomorrow is nothing to take lightly.  My chest tightened when he started naming his nakama on his fingers.  I sobbed like a baby when he shouted, “Nakama ga iru yo!” (I have my friends.)  This is also the time when I really wanted Jimbei to join the Mugiwara Pirates.  Thank you, Jimbei!  You saved Luffy from going into a total breakdown.

2. Going Merry’s Funeral
Oh.  It’s getting hard to breathe.  It’s been reported that Oda-sensei cried while drawing Merry’s funeral.  It’s so incredible that a ship is loved so much by its crew that it’s considered as one of their nakama.  Going Merry-go‘s funeral is so heart-breaking, especially when their memories start raining upon the crew.  The background music, Dear Friends by Triplane, didn’t help either.  It’s too SAAAAAD!!! ˚‧º·(˚ ˃̣̣̥᷄⌓˂̣̣̥᷅ )‧º·˚

1. Portgas D. Ace’s Death
ƈ ͡ (ुŏ̥̥̥̥ ‸ ŏ̥̥̥̥) ु
༼ ༏༏ີཻ༾ヘ ༏༏ີཻ༾༾༽༽
I j-just c-can’t. . .Ace, come back! Please!!! 。・゚゚・(>д<)・゚゚・。
No matter how heart-breaking it is, I still think that Ace’s death was a genius move by Oda-sensei because it made the series so much better.  It set up the post-timeskip period where the Mugiwara Pirates “leveled up.”  But still. . .AAAAAAA-ACE!!!!!!!!!  (づ-̩̩̩-̩̩̩

So these are my top 10 most gut-wrenching scenes in ONE PIECE. You’re without a heart if you didn’t at least shed a tear during these scenes.
Which scenes are in your top 10?

ONE PIECE Official Website (Japanese)
Weekly Shounen Jump’s ONE PIECE Manga Official Web Portal (Japanese)
ONE PIECE on Toei Animation (Japanese)
ONE PIECE on Funimation (English)
ONE PIECE on Viz Media (English)
ONE PIECE on Madman Entertainment (English)

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Published by Arria Cross

Blogger at since 2014. Currently a webnovelist. Check out my work "His Genius is a Superstar".

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  1. After going over this list, this is what I like about One Piece. There are times we laugh, there are times we cry. Out of everything, I thought the death of the Merry was painful. It was only crew member that died and did not ask from the crew, it merely went through the dangerous waves with a smile. If Oda cried to this too, this must have been a very difficult moment T_T

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my gosh. You GET it. I’m so happy to meet someone who understands ONE PIECE. Well, I know others who chose Merry’s death as their most gut-wrenching scene, too, but I personally chose Ace’s death because it affected me more. Oda-sensei revealed in one of the earlier tankobon’s SBS Corner that he cried while drawing Merry’s death, and he cried again when he watched it in the anime on TV.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow, I feel bad for him. When I heard about Ace’s death, I was shocked and disappointed. What really got me was that after everything Luffy went through, it was in vain. Instead of returning to his friends, he decided to go save his brother and even Bon Clay risked his own life to help Luffy. He is a true friend. One Piece really hits you in the feels. I forgot to put this with my previous post, thanks for creating this list. Keep it up you are doing great. Straw Hat For The Win!!! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. My thoughts exactly. Indeed, OP really hits you in the right place. I just love this series, and like I said in my post, I can’t wait how Oda-sensei will wrap up the series but at the same time, I don’t want it to end. I’ll probably still watch it even when I’m already a grandma, if it’s still running then (although I doubt it).

        Thanks for your kind words. You, too. Straw Hats for the win!


      1. Indeed. You’re absolutely right. That’s why it’s such a great anime. I’ve encountered critics that say ONE PIECE is shallow. But of course, I disagree with them.


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