The series begins with the execution of Gol D. Roger, a man known as the King of the Pirates (海賊王 Kaizokuō?). Just before his death, Roger announces that his treasure, the One Piece (ひとつなぎの大秘宝 (ワンピース) Wan Pīsu?), will be available to anyone who finds it, beginning the Great Pirate Era (大海賊時代 Daikaizokujidai?). As a result, countless pirates set out to the Grand Line to look for the treasure.
Twenty-two years have passed since Roger’s execution, and Monkey D. Luffy, a young man inspired by his childhood idol and powerful pirate “Red Haired” Shanks, sets off on a journey from the East Blue sea to find the One Piece and proclaim himself as the King of the Pirates. In an effort to organize his own crew, the Straw Hat Pirates (麦わら海賊団篇 Mugiwara Kaizoku-dan?), Luffy rescues and befriends a swordsman named Roronoa Zoro, and they head off in search of the One Piece. They are joined by Nami, a navigator and thief; Usopp, a sniper and a liar; and Vinsmoke Sanji, a womanizing chef; in their journey, they acquire a ship named the Going Merry and engage in confrontations with pirates including Buggy the Clown, Captain Kuro and Don Krieg. Later, Luffy encounters Arlong, a fishman and member of the former Sun Pirates who thinks that fishmen are superior to humans. After Luffy defeats Arlong, Nami officially joins Luffy’s crew and the Navy places a bounty on Luffy’s head. Luffy, then meets Captain Smoker, a Navy captain who can turn into smoke. He briefly captures Luffy, but Luffy is saved by his father, Monkey D. Dragon, who is identified by Smoker simply as Dragon, the most wanted man in the world. After making their way into the Grand Line, the group meets Nefeltari Vivi, a princess who wants to help save her country, the Alabasta Kingdom, from the crime syndicate Baroque Works. They later befriend the doctor and anthropomorphized reindeer Tony Tony Chopper while in Drum Island.