Haoshoku Haki is a rare form of Haki that cannot be attained through training. Only one in a million people have this ability.
It was first demonstrated by Shanks, when he used it to scare off a Sea King. Later on, during a meeting with Whitebeard, he used it to knock out most of the crew, which the few still standing attributed to his superior Haki. Luffy first displayed the effects of this type of Haki against Duval's bull, Motobaro, much to everyone's confusion. He displayed it again on Amazon Lily while battling the Boa sisters, knocking out a large portion of the audience observing the match. This is also the first time it is referred to by name. Luffy's exhibition of it during the Marineford War was enough for the Marine admirals to become wary enough of him that they prioritized his elimination afterwards. After the timeskip, Luffy is proficient enough to tame monsters, as well as knock out a selected group of individuals without affecting any of the bystanders using Haoshoku Haki, displaying his new-found proficiency in the skill.
This type of Haki grants the user the ability to dominate the wills of others. The most common usage in the series so far is knocking those with weak wills unconscious.  Whilst inexperienced users are restricted to merely overpowering the will of one individual or blindly knocking out weak-willed people around them, those with more expertise can pick out weak-willed individuals in a large group and knock them out without affecting those around them. However, those with stronger wills can resist or even ignore the effects of Haoshoku Haki. The ability to knock someone out depends on the difference in strength between the person using Haki and the person or persons the user is trying to knock out. The greater the power gap, the easier it is to knock the victim out. According to Rayleigh, while this type of Haki cannot be attained through training, it can be improved through training, as it grows as the user's spirit grows. It seems that upon recovery, victims of Haoshoku Haki experience the sensation of chills running through their body. However, it presumably wears off after a short period.
There have been two ways in which this Haki has been used. The first and most common way is in a quick burst that will knock out those with weaker wills relatively easily. The second method is to release it continuously, which will not only knock out those of weak wills around the user, but also put pressure on the surroundings, actually affecting other physical objects besides living beings. It also has been shown that light bursts of Haoshoku Haki can be used in order to tame or intimidate creatures, and show the users superiority over the beast(s).
While this is shown to be a very rare gift among One Piece characters, it is noted by Don Chinjao that the New World is filled with numerous others who possess the ability to use this Haki. He explains that Luffy will most certainly encounter them and fight them for the title of Pirate King .
Known Haoshoku Haki Users
|Shanks||Monkey D. Luffy||Silvers Rayleigh||Boa Hancock||Edward Newgate †|
|Portgas D. Ace †||Donquixote Doflamingo||Chinjao||Charlotte Linlin||Charlotte Katakuri|
|Kozuki Oden †||Eustass Kid||Sengoku||Kaido||Gol D. Roger †|
- †: the character is deceased.
- *: the character's status is unknown, or show additional information. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
- ≠: the character is non-canon.
- ‡: the character is no longer part of this group. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
Anime and Manga Differences
- In the manga, those hit with Haoshoku Haki foam at the mouth after or while losing consciousness, whereas in the anime, they simply faint.
- In the anime, use of Haoshoku and Busoshoku Haki creates a rippling or shockwave-like effect, similar to the Gura Gura no Mi, while in the manga, it is completely invisible. Also, in recent episodes, use of Haoshoku Haki causes the affected area, excluding the user, to be highlighted in a dark blue tint. However, this could just be for dramatic effect. In the One Piece Film: Z, the Haoshoku Haki's use creates a circular purple wave.
Translation and Dub Issues
Though the "Haō" in "Haōshoku" is translatable to "king", it refers to a "warring king" or "conqueror", one who rules by power and conquest. The term "Overlord" has been used by some translators.
- Curiously, all the canon Haoshoku Haki users aside from Luffy and Chinjao share a royal position or epithet, which indicate their dominating role:
- Boa Hancock, also known as the Pirate Empress, is Amazon Lily's ruler and captain of the Kuja Pirates.
- Donquixote Doflamingo is the King of Dressrosa and captain of the Donquixote Pirates, as well as a former World Noble.
- Edward Newgate was one of the Yonko and captain of the Whitebeard Pirates.
- Portgas D. Ace, being the son of the Pirate King, can metaphorically be considered a prince. He was also captain of the Spade Pirates.
- Shanks is one of the Yonko and captain of the Red Hair Pirates.
- Silvers Rayleigh has the epithet of "Dark King".
- Hancock is the only known female to possess this type of Haki.
- Caesar Clown's attack Karakuni was mistaken for Haoshoku Haki by one of the Marines of G-5.
- All currently known Haoshoku Haki users are pirates. No Marines or other citizens are known to use the ability.