• The Rocks Pirates, led by Rocks D. Xebec, were the strongest and most powerful pirate crew in One Piece history.
  • However, the crew’s fatal weakness was their internal hatred and constant infighting, which made them vulnerable to defeat.
  • Their lack of mutual support and trust allowed their enemies, like Monkey D. Garp and Gol D. Roger, to easily divide and conquer them, leading to their downfall.

While Gol D. Roger’s Roger Pirates are widely considered the strongest pirate crew in One Piece, the Rocks Pirates Crew, who ruled the Four Seas a generation prior, were arguably stronger. This is why it’s unfortunate that the Rocks Pirates had one key weakness that eventually lead to their downfall. The Rocks Pirates might be One Piece’s strongest crew, but that didn’t matter much considering how much they hated each other.

About 50 years before Gol D. Rogers mustered his fateful crew that went on to reach Laughing Tale and find the One Piece treasure, the seas along the Grand Line belonged to Rocks D. Xebec and his Rocks Pirate Crew, a brutally fearsome collection of buccaneers who even made One Piece’s evil World Government shake in their boots. Unlike contemporary One Piece pirate crews, Xebec kept a smaller second line of sub-captains who have gone on to tremendously shape and influence the contemporary pirate community. His crew included infamous pirates such as Whitebeard, Big Momma, and Kaido.

The Rocks Pirates Absolutely Hated Each Other

One Piece's Rocks Pirates in silhouette.

Despite Xebec gathering the strongest pirate bosses under one sail, the Rocks developed a fatal weakness that Monkey D. Garp and Gol D. Roger eventually took advantage of to violently send the Rocks Pirate Crew into “retirement”. That weakness was that Xebec’s crew disliked one another to the point where they were willing to sacrifice some of their authority for the sake of spiting each other. As Former Fleet Admiral Sengoku said in One Piece Chapter #957, “they got on so terribly” that they “constantly killing one another within the group.” Even though the World Government feared the Rocks Pirate Crew’s ability to topple their leadership, the constant arguing among the sub-captains meant that they tended to fight themselves more than they fought the Marines.

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No other pirate crew in the long history of One Piece was as strong and powerful from top to bottom as the Rocks Pirate Crew. In Chapter #957, Sengoku called them, “a rampaging force of evil that none had been able to stop”. There was no “weak link” that opponents could take advantage of to win the day. Opponents were forced to confront the fact that they would have to defeat eight bosses of equal abilities before they could even consider taking out Xebec himself. If the Rocks Pirate Crew had been able to swallow their pride and develop a commonly agreed-upon plan of action, it is unlikely any would have been able to defeat them.

Ultimately, their lack of mutual support meant that they could be divided and conquered with ease. The toxic work environment meant that few of the senior leaders trusted one another, and more likely were jealous of each other. This necessarily meant that they had no loyalty. Accordingly, when faced with a real and unified threat, such as that posed that fateful day at God Valley by Roger and Garp, it is not hard to imagine how the strongest pirate crew in the history of One Piece was ultimately done in by their own internal weakness.

One Piece is now available from Viz Media.

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