Eiichiro Oda’s ONE PIECE continues to be the fastest selling comic book of all times, with the new Vol. 63 selling at a record breaking clip:

Eiichiro Oda’s “One Piece” manga continues its strong sales record with the latest volume 63 passing the 2 million sales mark just within 4 days of its release. This amazing result outshine the performance by Vol 60 & Vol 61 which only managed to pass the 2 million mark after 1 week.

A previous volume of ONE PIECE, #60, set another record by selling 3 million copies in an 8-day period.

Although a bit of a non-starter in the US — perhaps due to the less-than-awesome anime translation, and themes and characters who are a little, ahem, “vivider” than the US kids market is used to, ONE PIECE is probably the best selling comic ever worldwide.


  1. I think that the last seven or so volumes have set sales records, print records, or both. Printing 3.9 million copies of the 63rd collected edition of a children’s manga is unbelievably impressive. OP is bigger than just a manga now, with several movies, restaurants, and other “other media” efforts under Oda’s belt, but the sales are stunning. OP as a series sold a combined 14,721,241 copies in 2009. Unbelievable.

    I like this bit from the trivia (http://onepiece.wikia.com/wiki/One_Piece_Film:_Strong_World) for the latest movie, too:
    “This movie’s promotion led to a significant increase of sold volumes: All 56 volumes of the manga that had been published prior to the movie’s release ranked within the Top 200 Oricon selling charts in the week of December 7 to 13, 2009. Shueisha already had announced before the movie’s premiere that Volume 56 was being published with 2.85 million copies in its first print.”

    Can you imagine that for a comic today? Over ten years of a single comic ranking in the top 200?

    Makes me wonder what the US industry would’ve been like without the Comics Code cutting it off at the knees, crap business practices chasing people out, and the mainstream catering to an increasingly small pool of fans.

  2. Well, there are 34 Asterix books and 63 volumes of One Piece (and about another 60 to go) so I think as far as total lifetime sales will be concerned, Oda wins.

  3. My understanding was that Asterix volumes sold in the millions-in-a-week range as well, and in the 10s-of-millions-each range over their lifetimes.

    That would complicate comparisons with American comic books, which have limited shelf lives. The best-selling American comic book is reportedly X-MEN Vol. 2, #1, with more than 8.1 million copies sold.


  4. Also, One Piece is awful, making this article and all of the dumb “Oh wow look at how much this crap sold!!” gushing irrelevant.

  5. Al, It is in every mass market bookstore, newsstand and convenience store in Japan. It is that widely available in both weekly Shonen Jump and in collected volumes. There is a very limited direct market there and it is concentrated in merchandise.

  6. The best selling American graphic novel is probably “Watchmen”. (Although “Maus” might have sold more copies.) “Bone” is another contender, given library sales, although the number reported is for the entire series. All three were serialized before collection.

    I wonder what the sales were on the first “Pogo” collection, which rearranged the comic strip panels into comic book pages… and the “Alien” adaptation by Goodwin and Simonson … both made the bestseller lists.

    And, of course, “Wimpy Kid”…

    Also, consider that One Piece sold 2 Million copies in a country of 127 Million people.

  7. What’s even crazier is that it can sell 2 million of a new volume in a four days…OF REPRINT MATERIAL. Every page of the series is already printed in Shonen Jump every week, which itself has a circulation of 2.8 million a week these days according to Wikipedia. Amazing.

  8. Well, keep in mind, Jason Green, that the print quality in SJ isn’t exactly fantastic – I bought an issue off of eBay a couple years ago and the best thing I can say about the ink is that it’s “readable.” It’s good enough for weekly, phonebook-sized-mag-for-the-cost-of-a-hamburger publication, but not exactly the stuff devoted re-readings are made of.

    Collected volumes have much better printing quality (and take up less room, to boot – imagine keeping 500+ issues of SJ around just so you could keep one series on hand!)

  9. Oh, I know! I was just pointing it out because I know a lot of non-manga readers wouldn’t know/realize this. But there’s a market for people who want to read something, and a market for people who want to have it forever. The fact that the latter for “One Piece” is as large as it is is phenomenal. It’s like if “The Walking Dead” was #1 on the charts for both TPBs *and* single issues every month: by American standards, that kind of popularity is unheard of. That’s all I was trying to say.

  10. Asterix has total worldwide sales of about 360 millions. It IS the world’s best-selling comic series.

    The average Asterix book sells about 3 million copies in France alone on the first few days of release. That’s 3 million on a population of 65 million. Longterm sales are even more impressive.

    One Piece has impressive sales in Japan, but hasn’t had (yet!) the same international sucess Dragon Ball, Naruto or, yes, Asterix have, which is its Achilles’ heel.

    On the other hand, the manda is still ongoing with no ending in sight, so maybe in a few years it will surpass Asterix.

  11. It sure is the fastest probably, but not the highest selling. Look at Superman during the Golden Age of comics? In 12 years, it sold nearly 140,000,000. Then during the 50s when comics fell, it made another 50,000,000. Let’s not forget the 60s -80s where it sold 108,000,000. Then from the late 80s till now, around 30 million. So in total it sold 328,000,000 in the US alone. Add other countries into the picture, such as Mexico which sells an average of 500,000 an issue, you’re looking well past 1,000,0000,000 easily. Batman has sold up there too along with Spiderman, and nearly all the other top tier comic book heroes. Hell even the Disney comics which continue to be immensely popular in Europe has this manga beat. Let’s not forget guys.. These records are print run, not actual sales. So One Piece probably distributed 260,000,000 to different stores world wide, but probably sold closer to 200,000,000. I know this because the best selling comic of all time, single issue was the X-Men issue 1 volume 2 with 8,000,000 but sold closer to 3.2 million. There are many sites like these that give off false info because according to ORICON the sales are up at the 3 million range, not the 2 million. Manga’s market worldwide is only $150,000,000, which means it’s comic book lines aren’t very popular. It makes the most in Japan with a gigantic $5 billion dollar market. What one must consider though is at least $2 billion of that is from foreign comics (like US comics and European comics sold in Japan). So that leaves $3 billion being pure manga, but the sales there are insane (Japan is either the most expensive or in the top 3 in the world). When things are worded differently, you can easily make things seem to sell really fast, but in reality, is one of the worst or slowest selling products. Never rely on Wikipedia. Most of the people who do “essays” on there have it flawed because it’s edited by a hardcore fan or some business person to make it look immensely popular when in reality it isn’t nearly as known as it is.. but the hype behind it get it close to that.