One Piece: The Marineford Arc, Explained

The Whitebeard Pirates’ declaration of war against the World Government leads to tumultuous events that alter the course of the series.


  • The execution of Portgas D. Ace sparked the greatest war in the pirate era, leading to the rise and fall of major characters.
  • Luffy’s growth was tested in the war filled with warlords and admirals, leaving fans with bittersweet emotions.
  • Post-Marineford events brought drastic changes, altering the balance of powers and setting the stage for a new era in One Piece.

The execution of Portgas D. Ace is what led to what would be known as the greatest war since the beginning of the great pirate era. With the rise and death of major characters, the Marineford arc of the One Piece series left a bittersweet feeling in the hearts of fans with the deaths of major characters and the possibilities of what would come after.

With Luffy being embroiled in a war filled with warlords, emperors of the sea, and admirals, fans were left to witness just how much growing the protagonist needed to do. Thankfully, Luffy managed to survive the war and has grown, but the events of Marineford still intrigue many, as with Marineford came the new era of pirates in the One Piece series.

One Piece The Arabasta Arc Explained - Featured


One Piece: The Arabasta Arc, Explained

Featuring the Straw Hats’ battle against the Warlord Crocodile, the crew’s adventures in Arabasta had a huge influence on the rest of the series.

The Great War Begins

Whitebeard Vs. The Marines Begins


As Luffy was unable to get to Ace before he was taken from Impel Down, the Straw Hat captain and all the allies he gained in the great prison headed to Marineford, each for their own reasons. Meanwhile, in Marineford, excluding the five elders, the greatest powers of the World Government are present. From the warlords to the admirals and many more marine soldiers, Marineford is tense as the soldiers await the presence of Whitebeard, the captain and de facto father of Portgas D. Ace, the man scheduled to be executed. Before Whitebeard arrives, many infamous pirate captains allied with Ace and the Whitebeard pirates arrive. However, Sengoku, the then Fleet Admiral of the Marines, is uninterested and searches for Whitebeard. Suddenly, Whitebeard appears at the harbor from under the sea, greatly shocking the Marines. With Whitebeard’s appearance, the war begins.

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The Death Of Ace

Luffy Experiences The Loss Of A Brother


Some point after the war began, Luffy joined the battle with the many inmates from Impel Down. His presence astonished many. From Ace to Whitebeard, Garp, and many warlords, various individuals expressed shock at the presence of Straw Hat Luffy. While he was weaker than most of the named figures who were present at Marineford, Luffy managed to earn the respect of many through his perseverance and tenacity. At one point, Ace’s execution was moved forward, and many of the pirates were powerless to stop it. Thankfully, Luffy subconsciously activated his Conqueror’s Haki, taking many out. With the portrayal of Luffy’s abilities, the Marines began to treat him seriously.

Unfortunately, even with Whitebeard’s prowess, Luffy’s tenacity, and the rest of the Whitebeard pirates, Ace was still killed. Initially, Luffy rescued Ace from his prison cuffs, relieving many of the pirates present. Sadly, after Ace’s release, Akainu started targeting the brothers as their bloodline was revealed during the war. Taking a blow meant for Luffy, Ace was left with a gaping hole in his chest. In a tear-jerking scene, Ace dies, leaving behind tear-jerking last words.

Thank you for loving someone like me who is good for nothing…and who has such bad blood in his veins… up to today…thank you.

The Rise And Fall Of Emperors

A New Era Is Born


After Ace’s death, Whitebeard began an all-out attack on Akainu. While the emperor was stronger than the admiral, Akainu himself was no pushover. Throughout their fight, Akainu managed to leave a few holes in Whitebeard, but the emperor eventually emerged as the winner of their battle. After Akainu was defeated, the Blackbeard pirates made an appearance. With his Dark Dark devil fruit and Whitebeard being on the verge of death, Blackbeard and his crew mates gang up on him, killing him. Before he dies, Whitebeard gives an astonishing cry, declaring the authenticity of One Piece and proclaiming how Sengoku and the rest of the Marines fear the war that would engulf the world after someone finds One Piece. Shortly after his proclamation, the great pirate Whitebeard finally breathed his last. However, his former crew member then began to cover his body as he wanted to put on a show. Emerging from under the black cloth he covered Whitebeard with, Blackbeard now had the power of the Tremor Tremor devil fruit, astonishing the world. Using his two devil fruit abilities, Blackbeard begins to decimate Marineford, with Sengoku stepping up to stop him.

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Even after the deaths of Ace and Whitebeard, the war continued, with the Marines determined to kill off as many pirates as they could. Thankfully, Shanks arrives, ending the war. With no party willing to start a battle against the emperor Shanks, the war naturally came to a close, with Shanks requesting to handle the burial of Ace and Whitebeard.

Post War Events

The War Leaves Drastic Changes


After the end of the war that would be known as the Paramount War, several events occurred that shook the world. With the death of an emperor, the resignation of two warlords, Jinbe and Teach, and the revoking of Moria’s warlord status, the balance of the three powers was altered, and new people were used to fill up the gap they left. Trafalgar Law and Buggy became warlords. Meanwhile, the remnants of the Whitebeard pirates went to face the Blackbeard pirates and suffered a crushing defeat, showing just how powerful Teach’s crew had become with his recruits from Impel Down. Moreover, Sengoku retires as Fleet Admiral and Akainu takes his place while Aokiji leaves the Marines. Apart from that, Sabo, the Chief of Staff and number two of the Revolutionary Army recovers from his amnesia and remembers that he is Luffy and Ace’s sworn brother, causing him to inherit Ace’s will. An intriguing aspect of the arc is how Blackbeard now stands as the only one in the world to have two devil fruit abilities, granting him immense abilities and influence. As a former subordinate of Whitebeard’s, Blackbeard was easily able to conquer Whitebeard’s territories, becoming the new emperor in Whitebeard’s place.

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One Piece is available to stream on Crunchyroll.

Highest Stamina One Piece


One Piece: 9 Characters With The Highest Stamina

These One Piece characters have extremly high stamina.

One Piece-9

One Piece



Toei Animation


Eiichiro Oda

Number of Episodes


Streaming Service(s)

, Netflix
, Hulu

See at Hulu

Categorías: Anime

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