Monkey D. Luffy, the protgaonist of Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece is one of the most entertaining characters, even while fighting!
This can heavily be credited to his devil fruit, Gomu Gomu no Mi, turning him into a person made of rubber! With time, Luffy had to step-up to fight against strongest character, hence giving birth to “gears”, which allow him to face some of the strongest characters!
In this article, we’ll take a look at all of Luffy’s gears!
Gear 1 Luffy, or better known as just his base form showcases the simplest application of his power, and that is the fact that Luffy’s body becomes rubber, and has the ability to stretch in any way he wants.
With some creativity, Luffy is able to utilize this property and increase the overall impact of his attacks by stretching his body to then rely on the sharp recoil.
This is the purest form of Luffy’s paramecia abilities. Yes, although the Nika Fruit is a Mythical Zoan, as Kaido stated it’s like nothing we have seen before, as it exhibits paramecia-like effects.
Even with its awakening, Luffy has both the Zoan boost, of advanced strength, durability, and recovery, along with the paramecia effect of sharing his abilities with the surroundings, where he ends up making everything into rubber or cartoon-like.
Becoming rubber-like is a part of the fruit’s base power on top of Luffy’s ability to awaken and transform into sun-god Nika which we’ll talk about later…
Moving on to the first transformation Luffy ever unlocked.
Gear 2 is the power to pump blood even faster throughout his body, meaning he gets more oxygen and other nutrients delivered to his cells at a faster rate than normal.
This process is compared to doping by Lucci, as it’s an artificial increase in strength rather than being natural.
Luffy is able to greatly enhance his physical abilities to the point of completely outspeeding the Rokushiki technique Shave!
The insane increase in acceleration allows Luffy to completely smash through the “Iron Body” technique.
And during the Impel Down arc, Luffy even managed to completely overwhelm Blackbeard with a single punch despite him being someone who won a fight against Ace!
The main drawbacks of this form are the direct result of Luffy speeding up how fast his body is getting the nutrients.
By consuming everything so much faster, Luffy is using more oxygen, energy, and nutrition which as a result of his metabolism causes Luffy to be even hungrier than usual or even causes him to be temporarily paralyzed.
But the true repercussions of Gear 2 are, as stated by Rob Lucci, the effects it has on Luffy’s life force!
The main issue with having your blood be pumped around the body at a higher rate is that it means his heart will have to work even harder to keep up and in turn ruin his cardiovascular health.
To negate this weakness Luffy learned, with the help of Rayleigh, how to apply his Gear 2 in shorter bursts rather than keeping it constantly active whenever he fights.
If Gear 2 is about speed and impact, Gear 3 is about pure mass and power.
Gear 3 is the power to inflate his bones in a particular limb, increasing its destructive power and size.
Luffy is able to do this by blowing air through one of his thumbs which then inflates the bones in his body making the impact of his punches land that much harder.
He is also able to redirect the air in his body to other limbs and where to face
Additionally, Luffy is able to add armament and conqueror’s haki to his fists and is able to use Ryuo to further increase the potency of his attacks.
Gear 4 is about combining everything that Luffy has learned so far and pushing his devil fruit and haki to its limits.
Luffy activates Gear 4 in a similar manner to Gear 3 by blowing into one of his arms instead of his thumb.
But, the difference here is that he inflates his muscular structure instead and distributes the air a bit more evenly as opposed to gear 3.
He then imbues himself with armament haki as his whole body becomes inflated.
With this form, Luffy becomes like a rubber ball which causes him to bounce endlessly!
There are three main types in Gear 4:
But the main difference between this and the other gears is that bounce man is more about compression and force rather than stretching, even if Luffy’s stretching capabilities have been enhanced in Gear 4.
After training for 2 years with Silvers Rayleigh on an isolated island, Luffy came up with the idea to take inspiration from the animals that live there and incorporate it into his new moves and techniques
For example, in his base form, Luffy liked to use the move “Gum Gum Bazooka” as a finishing blow, it had a decent range so Luffy could use it at varying distances.
But in gear 4 this has been reimagined as the “Leo Bazooka” which forces Luffy to come up real close to his opponents to be able to use the full impact of his punches.
Snakeman is a much slimmer and leaner form and focuses much more on speed and offense, giving up a lot of the defense that Bounceman gives.
But in exchange, Luffy experiences a great increase in attack speed and power.
The attack “Python” becomes greatly enhanced as Luffy is able to not only just retain the speed that his arms have whilst stretching and redirecting, but as they continue to stretch and turn, they even accelerate!
This means that even if an opponent dodges his attacks, the punches will only grow stronger and stronger before finally landing an extremely devastating blow.
In Snakeman, Luffy is able to use other attacks that he normally can’t in Bounceman, one of them being Hydra.
Hydra is a variation of Python and his Black Mamba attacks, which essentially uses rapid-fire punches together with the accelerating and bending of his arms to land powerful hits at an incredible rate.
But what truly makes Hydra stand out from the other two is the usage of advanced observation haki, or future sight.
This makes it so that Luffy can pin down whoever his opponent is and barrage them with the most unpredictable omnidirectional attacks possible!
Moving to the last variation of Gear 4, Tankman!
Tankman’s purpose is to increase the defense of Luffy by… eating food?
Wait, isn’t this just a fat Bounceman?!?
I mean hey Oda’s the author, not me.
After Luffy has… fattened himself up, Luffy becomes the main weapon and he uses the recoil of others’ attacks to bounce the attacks back.
But the main drawback to this form is the lackluster mobility and lack of great offense when compared to other forms.
Despite how strong Gear 4 is, there are obviously some drawbacks.
For example, after Luffy fully uses up his time with it, he’s left unable to even use Haki for 10 minutes as it depletes his haki reserves.
This is something unique to Luffy as often in the series, Haki is always qualified rather than quantified, it’s not just a number that goes up as someone gets stronger, but rather something that grows fiercer alongside you and your will.
Luffy’s Gear 5 is the awakened form of the mythical Zoan devil fruit Hito Hito no Mi: Model Nika.
This fruit was originally known as Gomu Gomu no Mi in the series.
In his “awakened” form, Luffy’s clothes and hair turn white, his eyes have white ring-like pupils that glow.
He also has white clouds floating around his head and back.
It seems that Luffy possesses a divine demeanor due to the attributes of his devil fruit.
This is because his fruit is linked to the Sun God ‘Nika’, and even bears its name.
After the awakening, Luffy’s heartbeat has a specific musical rhythm to it, referred to as the “Drums of Liberation” by Zunesha.
The hints of Luffy’s ties to ‘Nika’ have been hinted at since as far back as the Skypeia arc!
A distinctive characteristic of this transformation is its impact on the user’s personality.
Supposedly, Luffy received this devil fruit from Joyboy, which could explain his cheerful and extroverted demeanor.
The awakening only enhances the user’s carefree personality and bestows its user with unbound “freedom”.
We’ve written a separate article on Luffy’s Gear 5, where we explain everything in detail, and you can click here to read it!
In Gear 1, is able to use the inherent capabilities of his fruit and can use his rubber body to stretch longer than our theories.
In Gear 2, Luffy pumps blood faster so that it can deliver more oxygen and nutrients around the body gaining enhanced speed and strength.
Gear 3 is achieved by blowing highly condensed air into Luffy’s bones, increasing the mass and size of his limbs to attack with incredible destructive power.
Luffy activates gear 4 by combining the properties of the last 2 gears, with the infusion of HIS HAKI!
Through its 3 variations of Bounceman, Tankman, and Snakeman, Luffy can adapt to any situation.
Flying, becoming a tank to even being an unpredictable python.
Finally, Gear 5 Luffy is literally able to do anything he can imagine, even influencing his surroundings to become rubber & cartoonish