Portgas D. Ace, Rufy’s adopted older brother,is one of the audience’s most beloved characters in the One Piece saga. Born as Gol D. Ace and nicknamed“Fire Fist” because of his powers, he is the biological son of the late Pirate King, Gol D. Roger.
Ace was adopted, along with Rufy, by Monkey D. Garp, as requested by Roger before his execution. He was the commander of the second division of the Bluebeard Pirates, one of the four emperors of the sea, and at one time was captain of the Pirates of Swords.
Ace was first introduced during the Drum Island saga, but his first appearance was in the Alabasta saga when he meets, after many years, Rufy and his companions.
During his adventure, Ace faced many powerful enemies, including the world government and the Pirate Blackbeard, also a former member of Blackbeard’s pirates before his betrayal. The clash with the latter cost him defeat and Ace was captured and sentenced to death by the Naval World Government.
His execution dates back to the Marineford saga and provoked war between Whitebeard’s forces and the Marines, aided by the fleet of seven and the three admirals. During the battle, Ace was freed, but, later, he sacrificed his life to protect Rufy from Navy Admiral Akainu.
Ace’s death represents a real sharp split in the One Piece saga. In fact, Rufy and his companions decided to train, each on his own, for a full two years with the aim of becoming strong enough to protect each other and face the dangerous enemies of the New World.
Ace is a tall, muscular young man with black, curly hair and freckles on his face (inherited from his mother) that give him a rather childlike appearance. Although not related by blood to Rufy, Ace bears a striking resemblance to his adoptive brother. However, Ace seems much more mature than Rufy, since he is the older of the two.
Interestingly, his facial features were almost similar to those of his biological father Gol D. Roger when he was in his youth.
Ace’s tattoos are among his most notable distinguishing features. On his back he has engraved the symbol of the pirates of Bluebeard, bones a skull with a white mustache, while on his biceps, in the upper left corner, he has a vertical inscription representing the word “ASCE.” The word is the union of his name “ACE” with a crossed-out “S,” which is a tribute to his other adopted brother Sabo.
He wears knee-length black boots and shorts, with an orange belt and a blue bag laced around his left leg.
He always carries a dagger placed in a green sheath that hangs from his left hip. On his left arm, Ace, wears a Log Pose and a red and white striped bracelet around his wrist. Around her neck is a red beaded necklace and on her head is an orange hat with two blue faces, one frowning and one smiling.
Unfortunately, Ace lost his distinctive hat on Banaro Island after colliding with Blackbeard. The tattoo on his back that he was so proud of was later destroyed by the same stroke that eventually led to his death. However, Ace’s hat and knife were found and placed on his headstone.
Ace is much smarter, more mature, and generally more polite than Rufy, which prompted the Straw Hat Pirates to wonder if he was really related to their captain.
However, Ace also proved to be quite impulsive, just like his younger brother, as he also makes hasty decisions and, in some cases, does not listen to the advice of others. This was demonstrated when Whitebeard insisted that Ace should not go off in pursuit of the traitor Blackbeard. Ace, despite his immense loyalty and respect for his captain, ignored his warnings and went after his former subordinate, eventually ending up being defeated and captured by the navy.
Ace has a tendency to never back down from a fight, like his father and brother, and he was confident in his own abilities even in the face of powerful opponents such as Whitebeard or admirals such as Aokiji or Akainu.
Ace is also easily provoked, becoming violent toward anyone who insults or hurts people close to him. After hearing about Sabo ‘s alleged death at the hands of a world nobleman, Ace immediately set out to kill the nobleman, and Dadan had to nail and tie him to a tree to stop him.
This characteristic of his was one of the reasons that led to his death. In Marineford, in fact, after escaping execution on the scaffold, Admiral Akainu joined him in insulting Whitebeard. Ace quickly turned toward him, ignoring the warnings of his comrades who urged him to keep running and not to mind Akainu’s taunts. Ace, however, would not let go of the one who was belittling his captain and attacked Akainu with fierce anger. Akainu then took the opportunity to attack Rufy, and Ace had to sacrifice himself to save his little brother from certain death.
Ace commented on his death by saying that his greatest wish throughout his life was to know whether or not he should have been born. This is because, being the son of the pirate king Gold D. Roger, he had to live in the shadows, distancing himself from his true origins.
Ace’s only regret was that he could not live long enough to see Rufy realize his dream, and thus become the Pirate King.
As commander of the second division of the Bluebeard Pirates, Ace had authority over subordinates of lower rank. In addition, as one of the top commanders of the fleet of one of the four emperors, he was one of the strongest and most valued pirates in the world. At one point in his sea voyage, he was even asked to join the fleet of seven, but he flatly refused.
Because of his prestige and legacy, the world government granted Blackbeard the position of member of the fleet of seven after he successfully defeated and captured Ace.
Ace was trained by Garp, who had hoped to turn him into a good marine, but just as with Rufy, he failed. His training consisted of hunting and fighting fierce beasts on Mount Colubo, and this is the secret behind his formidable strength and endurance.
According to Sengoku, Ace had immense potential and said it was his rapid rise to power that made the world government realize that he was Gol D. Roger’s son. He went on to say that in time, Ace could potentially become the next Pirate King, and for that he was a threat.
He was also a skilled navigator, as he was able to sail from island to island in search of Rufy and Blackbeard on a simple raft, which he kept moving thanks to his firepower.
In the past, he had proven to be an equal fighter with both Yamato and Jinbe. With the latter in particular, he had engaged in a five-day-long battle that nearly led to the death of both.
Ace ate Mera Mera no Mi, a Rogia-type devil fruit that allows him to create, control, and transform his body into fire. It can unleash huge amounts of fire to do large-scale damage, but also use small precision attacks from a distance. Ace is capable, in fact, of firing projectiles and spears of fire and releasing powerful blasts of unprecedented power.
His signature attack involved turning his fist into a fireball of considerable size, and it is this technique that earned him the name ACE Fire Fist.
Its flames can also be used as a defense, creating a huge wall of to block opposing attacks.
Ace was one of the very few people in the world who could use all three types of Haki. Nevertheless, he rarely used them in combat, being more dependent on his devil fruit abilities.
Ace’s mother, Portgas D. Rouge, following the death of his father Gol D. Roger, held her son in her womb for a full 15 months, later delivering him on Baterilla. The effort, however, cost him his life, and Ace was placed in the custody of Navy Vice Admiral Monkey D.Garp, who, in turn, placed him in the care of Curly Dadan on Dawn Island.
Ace befriended Sabo, on Gray Terminal, and The two began to share the dream of becoming pirates.
One day when he was ten years old, Ace came home after hunting a buffalo, and here he met Rufy for the first time. Initially, Ace tried to distance himself from Rufy, but over time the two, together with Sabo, formed a bond so deep that they declared themselves brothers.
The trio continued their adventures across the island, becoming better known to a growing number of people. They hunted animals and fought each other to become stronger. One day, Dogra gave terrible news to Ace and Rufy: Sabo’s ship, which had sailed from the coast to start his new life as a pirate, had been blown up by a World Noble. Ace and Rufy then fell into despair and mourned their missing friend for days.
Years passed and Ace, at the age of 17, set sail from Mount Colubo to begin his life as a pirate. In the year after his departure, he was shipwrecked on the eastern blue island Sixis, where he met a man with the pseudonym Masked Deuce.
Several days later, Ace, starving, decided to eat a fruit, which unbeknownst to him was Mera Mera no Mi, and obtained the powers of the Devil Fruit.
Ace and Deuce became friends and decided to build a ship to escape and form a new crew under the name Pirates of Swords.
As time went on, the Pirates of Swords grew and became more and more infamous, eventually reaching the number of twenty crew members. Their goal was to defeat one of the 4 emperors and find the hidden treasure of the One Piece.
While searching for Whitebeard, they came across Jinbe, the knight of the seas, who had been tailing them to prevent them from clashing with the emperor. The battle between Ace and Jinbe lasted five days and ended in a stalemate, with both combatants collapsing from exhaustion.
Following this confrontation, he arrived with his crew and the Moby Dick, the very Whitebeard who easily defeated an already exhausted Ace. On the brink of death, Ace was offered by Whitebeard to join his crew, becoming one of his“sons.” Ace fiercely refused, but was still knocked out and dragged onto the emperor’s ship.
In the following days, Ace, tried to kill Whitebeard by all means, but failed. Eventually, tempted by Marco’s description of the crew’s father-son relationship with their captain, Ace relented and accepted the Bluebeard mark on his back, becoming a member of the Bluebeard Pirates and his subordinate.
After defeating Doma and forcing him to surrender, he was promoted to the position of commander of the second division.
Some time passed and ,one day, Teach, a member of Whitebeard’s crew and a subordinate of Ace’s division, killed his teammate Thatch to obtain the devil fruit Yami Yami no Mi.
Teach escaped and Ace felt compelled to set out in search of the traitor.
During this new journey of his, Fire Fist came to various lands including the Kingdom of Alabasta, where he met his younger brother Rufy and his new crew.
After years of pursuit, Ace, was finally able to find and confront Blackbeard on the island of Banaro. As the two continued to clash, Blackbeard began to physically overpower his opponent, thanks to his new power that allowed him to nullify Ace’s flames. The clash ended following a violent attack and Blackbeard emerged victorious.
After being defeated by Blackbeard, Ace was imprisoned in Level 6 of Impel Down before being sentenced to public execution at Marineford.
The boy was transferred, from prison, to Marineford where he was made to kneel on the platform of his execution.
To kick off the long-awaited event, Sengoku revealed to the world the identity of Ace’s real father and explained how Rouge had kept his son safe during his pregnancy.
Suddenly, in Marineford Harbor, the Moby Dick appeared, and with her Whitebeard and her crew began the confrontation with the navy. Later, Rufy and the prisoners from Impel Down, who had come to lend support for Ace’s rescue, also made an appearance.
At one point, The Executioners raised their blades to attempt to execute Ace, but were suddenly knocked out by Rufy who, filled with desperation, activated theConqueror King’s Haki
Sengoku then prepared to attack Rufy, who had now arrived in front of his brother, with his power of the devil fruit, but Straw Hat managed to cushion Sengoku’s punch. The force of the blow brought down the execution platform and Ace was finally released.
After they landed ashore, Ace and Rufy began to escape escorted by Jinbe, but Admiral Akainu intervened, saying that Bluebeard was a failure and that his crew was composed of scum and cowards. Angered by the statements about Bluebeard, Ace went back and attacked him, but was overpowered by Akainu’s magma fruit. The latter took the opportunity to attack Rufy, and Ace moved to protect his brother. Fist of fire, he managed to protect Rufy by taking the hit for him. Akainu’s magma fist went through his torso, kissing his insides.
Ace, now unconscious, fell into Rufy’s arms and said his only regret was not living long enough to see Rufy’s dream come true. After this, he fell to the ground and died with a smile on his face.