Aramaki, better known by his alias Ryokugyu, is an admiral in the Marines. He attained his rank during the two-year timeskip, along with Fujitora, both filling the two admiral vacancies left by Aokiji and Akainu.
Ryokugyu is a muscular man with thick and wild dark hair which reaches to his neck. He appears to be quite tall, as he looked comparable to fellow admiral Fujitora who stands at 2.7 meters. On his face, he has a somewhat pronounced nose and lips as well as a light goatee and sideburns; he has been shown smoking a cigarette.
He does not wear a shirt, whereby exposing a large kanji tattoo "死川心中" (meaning "double suicide at death river"?) running down the left side of his chest. He wears a pair of dark-colored pants with light flower designs on the left leg, whereas the right leg has a few small tears. Additionally, he wears the standard Marine cloak which covers his otherwise bare back as well as a pair of sunglasses over his eyes.
Ryokugyu is shown to act in a casual and uncouth manner, being unafraid of expressing his mind. With friends and allies, he has been shown to act quite jovial and conversational, as seen by his talk with fellow admiral Fujitora. With enemies, however, Ryokugyu has been shown expressing open contempt much like his direct superior Sakazuki, whom he wishes to emulate out of admiration. Ryokugyu agrees with Sakazuki's principle of never holding back when battling enemies, and thus is quite brutal during combat; he was shown impaling many of the Beasts Pirates in a gruesome manner during his attack on them and kicked Queen multiple times after impaling him. Ryokugyu also tends to disparage the abilities of opponents he easily overwhelms, as shown by his attack on the Beasts Pirates.
As his admiration of Sakazuki would indicate, Ryokugyu's goals are aligned with those of the Marines and he is faithful to his duties as an admiral, as shown when he and Fujitora worked to stop the Revolutionary Army's invasion of Mary Geoise. He has been seen expressing anger at people who unleash chaos in the world and make life difficult for the Marines, which led him to develop a grudge against Monkey D. Luffy. He takes pride in his reputation as a "monster" among the Marines, telling King and Queen it would be a blow to his reputation to have struggled with the Emperor's commanders.
Despite his loyalty, however, Ryokugyu is also extremely self-willed and will disregard or outright defy orders from his superiors in favor of doing what he feels is best. Although he admires Sakazuki, he did not follow the fleet admiral's order to remove Fujitora from Mary Geoise, seeing no point in the two of them doing battle. Later, despite Sakazuki telling the Marines to avoid Wano following Kaidou and Big Mom's downfall, Ryokugyu went to the country anyway in order to take down Luffy because he believed he could accomplish this and that he would gain Sakazuki's approval by killing the pirate. Ryokugyu even personally called in a battleship to aid him in his unapproved attack on Wano, an action which no other admiral has been shown doing for a personal mission. If he is doing something he should not be and is questioned about it, he has been shown to give vague answers to avoid being reprimanded, and when talking to subordinates he will order them to not inform his superiors about what he is doing.
Ryokugyu has abstained from eating for the last three years for unknown reasons. He also enjoys being around beautiful women, and remarked to Fujitora that he would consider breaking his fast if an attractive woman was feeding him.
Ryokugyu greatly admires his direct superior, Fleet Admiral Sakazuki, expressing approval of the latter's personal motto of "Thorough Justice" and seeking the fleet admiral's approval for himself. However, this has not prevented Ryokugyu from disregarding Sakazuki's orders to do what he wants, and he takes steps to prevent the fleet admiral from learning about his rogue actions. With that said, though, Ryokugyu made the decision to go to Wano against orders because he believed that Sakazuki would appreciate him for killing Luffy. When Ryokugyu went to Wano, Sakazuki appeared to be very displeased and exasperated at the admiral going missing and giving vague answers about his location, though upon learning of the Ryokugyu's destination he was seemingly resigned to the fact his subordinate would go there no matter what and simply ordered him to not do anything unnecessary.
Fujitora and Ryokugyu appear to be on good terms, as Ryokugyu disregarded Sakazuki's orders to drive Fujitora out of Mary Geoise in favor of having a friendly chat with his fellow admiral.
Straw Hat Pirates
Ryokugyu dislikes the Straw Hat Pirates, namely Monkey D. Luffy, for their involvement in the downfalls of Kaidou and Big Mom and throwing the world into chaos as a result. He decided to go on a rogue mission to Wano in order to kill Luffy as he believes he would gain approval from Sakazuki for doing this.
As part of his unauthorized mission to Wano, Ryokugyu sought out many of the imprisoned Beasts Pirates and brutally attacked them, including the All-Stars King and Queen in their weakest state, saying he would lose face if he let them get the better of him.
Given his standing, Ryokugyu is an enemy of the Revolutionary Army. As such, he and Fujitora engaged their chief of staff Sabo and his subordinates when they tried to rescue their former comrade Bartholomew Kuma.
Abilities and Powers
As an admiral, Ryokugyu's authority in the Marines is directly below the fleet admiral's, commanding authority over all lower-ranked personnel. He has the ability to command whole fleets, has a say in the overall strategy of the organization, and possesses the ability to issue special orders, like enacting a Buster Call at any time while also granting those of lower status such an ability. In general, Ryokugyu can be assumed to hold a great deal of military leadership/coordination skills to be seen as qualified for his rank and the responsibilities that come with it.
Combat-wise, Ryokugyu, along with the other admirals, is thought to constitute the World Government's "Greatest Military Power" (i.e., the strongest individual fighters that the government can bring into action), making Ryokugyu one of the world's most powerful combatants. Both he and Fujitora were stated by Doflamingo to be known as powerful monsters among the Marines. He was even able to defeat the 1,000,000,000+ bounty Beasts Pirates All-Stars King and Queen, as well as a number of other Beasts Pirate subordinates effortlessly. Although, it is possible that the pirates had not fully recovered from the injuries they sustained during the Udon prison breakout and the Onigashima raid that had happened days earlier.
During the latest Levely, Ryokugyu and Fujitora engaged in battle with the Revolutionary Army's chief of staff and "No. 2" in strength, Sabo, as well as the Commanders Morley, Lindbergh, and Karasu, though the result of this confrontation remains unknown.
Despite having not eaten in three years, Ryokugyu has remained completely healthy and not lacking in energy. It should be noted that he has been shown absorbing liquid into his body via his plant-based Devil Fruit, with water being a key source of nutrients for plants; however, it has not been officially stated or indicated that this is the reason he has been able to fast for so long.
Ryokugyu appears to have eaten a Devil Fruit of an unknown type that enables him to generate various plant life from his body at will and freely control it. The plants he creates can be grown rapidly and moved around freely, seemingly not being limited by any rigidity that some plants, such as trees, normally possess.
Ryokugyu can generate large quantities of plants to unleash overwhelming large-scale attacks; when attacking the Beasts Pirates, he turned his fingers into sharpened tree branches and freely grew them to impale dozens of enemies over a large area with ease. Additionally, Ryokugyu's plants can rapidly absorb any liquid they touch, which includes dehydrating living creatures after impaling them, leaving them as shriveled husks. He appears to be able to taste the liquid he absorbs, as shown when he impaled a barrel of alcohol with a branch and remarked on its flavor. Ryokugyu can also perform highly unorthodox feats with the plants he generates, such as growing a giant flower on his back and using it to fly by spinning it rapidly like a propeller.
It has also been shown that ordinary grass, trees and flowers grow in his wake, on any surface Ryokugyu touches, resulting in him leaving behind a trail of plants wherever he walks. This was shown when Udon, which is known to be a barren and desolate area was shown with greenery for the first time in many years. It is currently unknown if this is passively active or something he does on purpose.
Being of admiral rank, Ryokugyu is able to use Haki.
Ryokugyu carries around an as-of-yet unnamed black blade on his hip, which does not appear to be in a sheath and without a guard. He has yet to be shown using it.
Not much is known about Ryokugyu's past, but he claims during the past three years to have completely abstained from eating. Sometime during the two years after the Summit War, via the World Military Draft, Ryokugyu was appointed to the rank of admiral alongside Fujitora, to make up for the two vacancies among the three admiral spots left by Kuzan's resignation and Sakazuki's promotion.
Four Emperors Saga
Ryokugyu was present on the grounds of Mary Geoise's Pangaea Castle as royals from throughout the world arrived to attend the latest Levely. Despite having received orders from Sakazuki to make Fujitora leave, Ryokugyu instead had a friendly conversation with Fujitora concerning Vegapunk and the Seven Warlords of the Sea.
Wano Country Arc
A week after the raid on Onigashima and the fall of Kaidou and Big Mom, Ryokugyu flew to Wano Country, and Sakazuki, upon interrogating him and learning of his location via Den Den Mushi, warned him via Den Den Mushi not make the situation worse. Ryokugyu headed to the Prisoner Mine in Udon, where he attacked the Beasts Pirates who were being held there including All-Stars King and Queen. Ryokugyu dispatched these opponents with ease, leaving them impaled on tree branches. He then started walking toward the Flower Capital to kill Luffy, which he wished to do in order to gain Sakazuki's approval.
- Ryokugyu and Issho vs. Sabo, Morley, Lindbergh, and Karasu (unseen)
- Ryokugyu vs. King, Queen, Babanuki, and many other Beasts Pirates
Translation and Dub Issues
The Japanese kanji "牛" in Ryokugyu's alias has various bovine-related translations, e.g. "bull", "cow", "cattle", "ox"; given the basis for said alias (see the Trivia section below), "bull" is the most apt translation.
- In the SBS Volume 73, a fan provided a joke rendering of Ryokugyu's appearance. Oda found it quite bizarre and noted he had already designed the admiral, mentioning he was "super-duper cool" and that he could not wait to draw him.
- Ryokugyu's and Fujitora's animal motifs that are contained in their aliases (bull and tiger respectively) can be interpreted as being based off the Japanese legend of Momotarō, similar to the animal aliases of the original admiral trio. The tiger and bull (ushitora ("ox-tiger") as per the cosmology of onmyōdō) can be seen as representing the northeastern cardinal direction, which is where, in the aforesaid tale, the oni ("ogres") that Momotarō must kill live.
- Ryokugyu's name and appearance are likely based on the late Japanese actor Yoshio Harada. Harada portrayed a character named Aramaki in the film Ronin-gai, which also starred Kunie Tanaka and Shintaro Katsu whom fellow admirals Kizaru and Fujitora were respectively based on.
- Ryokugyu's tattoos may be a reference to Harada's song "Shinjuku Shinju".
- Ryokugyu's Devil Fruit ability is very similar to the non-canon Mosa Mosa no Mi, as both enable their consumers to control plants and make them grow. It also has a similar ability of the Suna Suna no Mi of drying their opponents.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 90 Chapter 905 (p. 14-15) and Episode 882, Ryokugyu debuts as a silhouette.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 72 Chapter 713 (p. 3) and Episode 643, Doflamingo mentions Ryokugyu.
- One Piece Manga — Chapter 1053 (p. 10-12), Ryokugyu appears in full for the first time.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 92 Chapter 925 (p. 10-11) and Episode 917.
- One Piece Manga — Chapter 1052 (p. 17).
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 34 Chapter 319 (p. 4) and Episode 227, The admirals' reputation is revealed.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 38 Chapter 359 (p. 13) and Episode 251, The admirals' ability to issue a Buster Call, and to pass on such authority, is revealed.
- One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 60 Chapter 594 (p. 7) and Episode 511, Dr. Fishbonen states Haki is a power all vice admirals use.
- One Piece Manga — Chapter 1053 (p. 10-12, 16-17).
- SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 73 (p. 144), An imagined drawing of Ryokugyu by a fan.
- SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 76 (p. 148), The alias origins of Ryokugyu and Fujitora.