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One Piece: How to watch the pirate franchise anime & live action in chronological order before the Netflix show

Get ready to garner some pirate booty with our guide to watching One Piece in multiple ways!

inaki Godoy smiling at Luffy in live action One Piece
Image credit: Netflix

There's more pieces to One Piece than ever - a manga, an anime TV show, anime movies, and now a live-action TV show (with a second season already on the way!).

But even for the most pirate-y among us, knowing just where or how to dive in to the franchise might be like walking off a plank. So we're here to help!

Sure, other anime series predate One Piece, but few have had the lasting power of Luffy and his band of merry pirates. The Straw Hats’ adventures began in the manga back in 1997 and have been going strong ever since.

Eiichiro Oda has found the perfect balance between humor, action, and heart-breaking moments in One Piece. Over half a billion copies of the manga have been sold since 1997 as countless fans have joined Monkey D. Luffy on his journey to gather a crew and become the king of the pirates. One Piece takes place in a world filled with all manner of fantasy elements, including dwarves, merfolk, and the iconic Gum-Gum Fruit, which granted Luffy his incredible stretching powers.

But with so much One Piece to watch — the regular show, the films, the specials, and now the live-action TV show— it can be difficult to know how to watch One Piece in chronological or release order. That’s why we’re here.

How to watch One Piece in chronological order

One Piece
Image credit: Toei Animation

Though One Piece anime’s 1000+ episodes are largely in chronological order, the 15 movies and multiple OVAs can be tough to slot into the story correctly. Like many Shonen anime films, most of the One Piece movies are considered non-canon, meaning that they exist at nebulous points in the series timeline. We’ve tried to place them as close as possible to where they should be, based on the characters present and their various abilities.

One thing to keep in mind is that One Piece makes liberal use of flashbacks, particularly in later arcs to allow the animators to fill time with minimal effort. This means that some portions of episodes take place earlier, but we’ve kept these with the overall chronological placing of the episode to avoid confusion.

Whether you’re a longtime Straw Hat pirate or you’ve just joined Luffy’s adventures in the Grand Line, here is the best way to watch One Piece in chronological order.

For the live-action Netflix show, it's pretty simple (so far):

How to watch One Piece in release order

One Piece
Image credit: Toei Animation

While the One Piece anime has plenty of flashback episodes, it can be very confusing to try to skip back and forth between episodes of the anime. That’s why it is usually better to watch it in release order, which removes the need to jump back and forth. Besides, much of the dramatic tension comes from watching the story unfold slowly.

Here is the release order for One Piece, complete with the TV specials and OVAs.

  • One Piece: Defeat Him! The Pirate Ganzack! OVA (1998) Note that this is OVA was produced before the original anime run of One Piece and therefore has a very different animation style and a completely different cast.
  • One Piece episodes 1-16
  • One Piece: The Movie (2002)
  • One Piece episodes 17-52
  • One Piece: Adventure in the Ocean’s Navel TV Special (2000)
  • One Piece episodes 53-60
  • One Piece: Clockwork Island Adventure (2001)
  • One Piece episodes 60-102
  • Chopper’s Kingdom on the Island of Strange Animals (2002)
  • One Piece episodes 103-146
  • One Piece: Dead End Adventure (2003)
  • One Piece episodes 147-149
  • One Piece: Open Upon the Great Sea! A Father’s Huge, HUGE Dream TV Special (2003)
  • One Piece episodes 150-173
  • Save! The Last Big Stage TV Special (2003)
  • One Piece episodes 174-183
  • One Piece: The Cursed Holy Sword (2004)
  • One Piece episodes 184-223
  • Baron Omatsuri and the Secret Island Movie (2005)
  • One Piece episodes 224-253
  • One Piece Historical Drama Series: Luffy's Detective Story TV Special (2005) Note that this episode takes place in an alternate reality and therefore cannot be placed in the main anime timeline.
  • One Piece episodes 254-257
  • Giant Mecha Soldier of Karakuri Castle Movie (2006)
  • One Piece episodes 258-299
  • One Piece: The Desert Princess and the Pirates: Adventures Alabasta (2007)
  • One Piece episodes 300-345
  • Episode of Chopper Plus: Bloom in the Winter, Miracle Cherry Blossom Movie (2008) Note that this is a remake of the Drum Island Arc, with different characters present and a condensed plot.
  • One Piece episodes 346-378
  • Romance Dawn Story Movie (2008)
  • One Piece episodes 379-429
  • Strong World Episode 0 OVA (2009)
  • One Piece: Strong World (2009)
  • One Piece episodes 430-489
  • One Piece 3D: Straw Hat Chase (2011)
  • One Piece episodes 490-560
  • Episode of Nami: Tears of a Navigator and the Bonds of Friendship Movie (2012) Note that this is an abridged retelling of the Arlong Park Arc.
  • One Piece episodes 561-576
  • One Piece Film: Z (2012)
  • One Piece episode of Luffy: Adventure on Hand Island TV Special (2012)
  • One Piece episodes 577-608
  • Episode of Merry: Tale of One More Friend TV Special (2013) Note that this special is an abridged retelling of the Water 7 and Enies Lobby arcs from the anime.
  • One Piece episodes 609-658
  • One Piece 3D2Y TV Special (2014)
  • One Piece episodes 659-705
  • Episode of Sabo: The Three Brothers’ Bond – A Miraculous Reunion and an Inherited Will TV Special (2015)Note that this is an abridged retelling of the Dressrosa Arc of the anime.
  • One Piece episodes 706-722
  • One Piece: Adventure of Nebulandia TV Special (2015)
  • One Piece episodes 723-749
  • One Piece Film: Heart of Gold TV Special (2016)
  • One Piece episode 750
  • One Piece Film: Gold (2016)
  • One Piece episodes 751-802
  • One Piece: Episode of East Blue: Luffy and his 4 Crewmate’s Big Adventure (2017) Note that this is an abridged recap of each of the five main characters’ story as they prepare to enter the Grand Line. It also includes hints at future adventures and crewmates in the closing credits.
  • One Piece episodes 803-850
  • One Piece: Episode of Skypedia TV Special (2018)
  • One Piece episodes 851-896
  • One Piece: Stampede (2019)
  • One Piece episodes 897-1030
  • One Piece: Red (2022)
  • One Piece episodes 1031-Present

Where can I watch One Piece?

One Piece
Image credit: Toei Animation

As one of the most popular anime series of all time, the streaming rights to One Piece are more valuable than pirate treasure. While you can invest in DVDs, it is probably more cost-effective to stream the episodes.

You can find every episode of One Piece in Japanese with English subtitles on Crunchyroll in most regions, with new episodes added within a few days of the original broadcast. However, the dubbed version is currently unavailable online due to the merger between Funimation and Crunchyroll in 2022. We expect it will eventually be added to the Crunchyroll service once whatever legal hurdles it faces are overcome.

The One Piece live-action series however, is exclusive to Netflix.

What’s next for One Piece?

One Piece
Image credit: Toei Animation

It might seem like One Piece will continue forever, but all stories must eventually end. Eiichiro Oda has indicated multiple times that the manga is in its final saga. At Jump Fiesta in December 2022, he also said that it would end “in its own time” and wouldn’t be rushed. With more than 1000 chapters already published in Luffy’s story, it might still be several years before he finally achieves his dream of becoming king of the pirates.

That might give us just enough time to finally get caught up.

When One Piece does eventually finish, it will leave a huge impact on the anime community. It has been one of the pillars of the anime industry for more than 20 years and has influenced everything that has come after it. If you’re looking for another classic Shonen anime to dive into, you can catch up on all of Goku’s adventures with our Dragon Ball viewing guide. Or you can check out our write-up of the One Piece: Red panel at NYCC 2022.

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Trent Cannon


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