Luffy’s journey to Pirate King status in One Piece has been inseparable from the development of his strength as a fighter. Since his first steps, Luffy has demonstrated great potential and fantastic combat skills and abilities.
Note: This article contains spoilers.
Some of Luffy’s most important qualities relative to combat are his creativity and endurance. Both play a huge role in his mastery of the Gum-Gum Fruit, and are undoubtedly his main strengths with the Fruit.
Yet throughout Wano, as Luffy gained new techniques and trained, it felt like he had no chance. When One Piece Chapter 1000 released, fans finally saw Luffy do damage to Kaido to the point where Kaido internally compared him to Oden, Roger, Shanks, and others. Just how strong is Luffy right now as fans await One Piece Chapter 1036’s official release?
Note: This article reflects the writer's opinion.
As Luffy vs. Kaido begins in One Piece Chapter 1036, just how strong is Luffy relative to others in his current form?
Luffy’s growth in Wano
By the time One Piece saw Luffy arrive at Wano, the Straw Hat Captain was still lacking two incredibly important Haki forms: Ryou and Advanced Conqueror’s Haki/Conqueror’s Coating. Even as Luffy learned the former before confronting Kaido, it still didn’t feel like he had enough to beat him.
One Piece Chapter 1000 and future One Piece chapters completely changed the look of Luffy’s chances, however. The use of Red Roc with presumably Ryou genuinely hurt Kaido, and just ten chapters later Luffy begins infusing his Conqueror’s Haki, successfully awakening his Advanced Conqueror’s Haki. From this point on, Luffy has an incredibly effective way of combating and even damaging Kaido.
Now, as fans await the official One Piece Chapter 1036 release, scanlations for the chapter see Kaido and Luffy laughing and enjoying their fight. Just within the roughly two week span that the Wano arc takes place in, Luffy has gone from seemingly having no chance against Kaido to getting ready to defeat the Yonko by himself.
Luffy’s growth within the Wano arc has been incredible to watch. While other characters such as Sanji, Zoro, and Chopper have had their moments to shine, Luffy’s center stage spotlight against Kaido is captivating to watch.
From Luffy’s brazen claim to the Pirate King in Kaido, and Big Mom’s presence, to One Piece Chapter 1036’s laughing scene, Luffy’s journey and Onigashima have been incredible in 2021.
How strong is Luffy relative to the One Piece world?
Yet this brings fans to a difficult question: just how strong is Luffy relative to the rest of the One Piece world?
At this point, Luffy clearly has the skills to go one-on-one with a Yonko, arguably the physically strongest in the form of Kaido. Zoro and Sanji have just beaten Kaido’s left and right hand men, and the other Straw Hats have various notches in their belts over the Beast Pirates, as well. Clearly, the Straw Hat crew as a whole can match up to a Yonko level crew fairly well.
As a result, it’s a fair assumption that Luffy can handle the number two of any pirate group or organization. Were Luffy to engage an Admiral right now, he certainly wouldn’t lose, even if his victory may be in question. As a result, this puts him within the roughly top ten strongest One Piece characters right now. As far as pirates go, Shanks and Blackbeard are likely the only two who could pose a genuine problem for Luffy.
With what One Piece fans have watched Luffy do in the Wano and Onigashima arcs respectively, it’s fair to say that Luffy is a top-ten strongest character in One Piece right now. His mastery of Ryou and his awakening of Advanced Conqueror’s Haki presents so many more creative attack opportunities for future fights.
Having beat Katakuri and being on his way to beating Kaido, there’s no number two of any crew or organization that could beat Luffy right now. While Luffy may find himself in a stalemate with some in this category, Luffy likely wouldn’t flat out lose to any of them.
One Piece Chapter 1036 scanlations have shown us that Luffy clearly is a match for Kaido, both in combat and technique mastery. As fans await the chapter’s official release, it’s important to look forward to future One Piece chapters where Luffy and Kaido hopefully remain in the center-stage.