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What If Luffy Never Formed the Straw Hat Pirates and Joined Shanks Instead?

Before Luffy made the Straw Hat Pirates. He longed to join Red Hair Pirates. What could have happened then to the One Piece universe?

One Piece continues the adventures of the Straw Hat Pirates. This group is founded and led by Emperor Monkey D. Luffy. Luffy always wanted the life of a pirate, since he could remember as a child. Shanks and his crew are his friends, as Red Hair Pirates make Cocoyashi Village their headquarters. Luffy loves the pirates and has requested to go with them numerous times. Shanks isn’t fond of taking children along on dangerous voyages. That doesn’t stop the young boy from begging him. If Shanks had agreed to let Luffy join his ship, the world of One Piece would have been a different place.

Red Hair Pirates is one of the most well-known pirate crews in. This pirate crew is one of the Four Emperors. The Red Hair Pirates made a name for themselves in Grand Line and New World, when Luffy first met Shanks. If Luffy was to end up joining their adventures it would undoubtedly have a different ending than the Straw Hat Pirates. It would also make One Piece completely different since viewers will not know the ending if Luffy stays with the Red Hair Pirates.


Most Straw Hat Pirates’ Fates Would Make You Feel Miserable

Luffy isn’t just the Straw Hat Pirates chief by name. He sets off on his pirate adventure without any crewmates. Recruiting his companions is the only way. He is not content with posting a simple advertisement. He meets his crewmates up close, making a huge difference in their lives. Luffy follows a standard process for recruiting: He extends an inviting invitation, helps the newcomer, and then re-extends it to his crew. However, sometimes he skips the second step and just goes straight to saving. If Luffy ended up joining the Red Hair Pirates in the early years of his life, the rest of the Straw Hats would have experienced unhappy endings.

This is true with the majority of Straw Hats. Nami and Arlong would still be working if Luffy wasn’t there. Her village would have fought and lost to the Arlong Pirates. Like Captain Kuro, Luffy and company would not have interfered with their devious plan. Brook would be drifting the oceans of the Florian triangle, likely to have become Don Krieg’s unlucky vessel. There is also a possibility Zoro would be lost to Helmeppo. Jimbei would remain at Impel Down. Robin and Franky are likely to be the only crew members who would have enjoyed a relatively easy fate. Crocodile could keep Robin in the loop to decipher Poneglyphs. Franky, assuming the World Government fails to find him, would be a Water 7 ruffian.


Largely the Major Forces in the Seas would Remain the Same

To say the Straw Hat Pirates have caused trouble in the One Piece community is an understatement. They are the primary reason for many shifts within the power balance between the major forces ruling over the seas. Luffy and his gang already take out Warlords during the earlier episodes. Crocodiles (and his Baroque Works) are the first to succumb to the Straw Hats. Luffy and the rest of their team then begin to defeat Gecko Moraia and Donquixote Donflamingo. They don’t stop with the Warlords. The Straw Hats make a mess of Emperors as they sail deeper into New World. They not only escape Big Mom’s Whole Cake Island; they also take Kaido in Wano Country down.

It wouldn’t have been possible for Luffy to join the Red Hair Pirates as early as the story began. The Warlords might have enjoyed a long reign if it wasn’t for the Straw Hat Pirates. Crocodiles Moria, Doflamingo, and Moria will likely continue to do their bidding. And even if they decide to eliminate the system, the Warlords are more than capable of defending themselves. Blackbeard’s rise to Emperor level seems logical, but Kaido and Big Mom still have a chance to become Pirate Kings if Luffy is not around. Law and Kid do not have the best chance of beating the Emperors. They would either be killed off or taken to Big Mom or Kaido’s authority, much like what happened to other members of The Worst Generation.

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Shanks will be the most likely candidate in the race to become the Pirate King

Luffy is most likely to level up during fights, or while he’s trying to save his friends. After numerous battles that are both life and death, he was able to reach his current level. It stands to reason that he wouldn’t be able to experience the same battles in One Piece if he had joined Red Hair Pirates at an early age. However, this doesn’t make Luffy any weaker. If he’d joined the Red Hair Pirates young, he would have had the chance to learn from Shanks.

However, joining the Red Hair Pirates won’t change the fact that Luffy’s Devil Fruit (Model: Nika) is the Human/Human Fruit. It’s just a matter until Luffy awakens his powers. Luffy may have been a Red Hair Pirates kid when his Awakening occurred. Shanks could easily be made the Pirate King by having another Emperor-level pirate under his command. They can’t be stopped by alliances with Emperors or all the Marine forces.

Luffy would be an ideal candidate to forge valuable alliances as a Red Hair Pirates ally. Shanks would have already accepted Luffy’s child into his pirate team, and he would probably continue to do so, even just to keep Luffy company. Luffy could slowly form his brigade and sail under the Red Hair Pirates’ Jolly Roger.

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