The Ordeals were four sacred and nearly impassable trials taking place in Upper Yard. Each Ordeal was overseen by one of the four priests serving under Enel. The chances of survival in each of the Ordeals was very slim, but both the Straw Hat Pirates and the Shandia tribe managed to overcome the odds.
To enter one of the Ordeals, people had to go to the Entrance of Ordeals and choose which Ordeal they wanted to face. Each priest controlled a different section of territory on Upper Yard. Whoever entered the Ordeal had to fight the Priest assigned to that territory.
Each priest used a different kind of special cloud in their Ordeal, which is where each Ordeal got its respective name. Furthermore, unless a special exception was made, each priest was limited to their own territory and could not interfere with another priest's Ordeal.
Ordeal of Balls
The Ordeal of Balls (玉の試練 Tama no Shiren?, VIZ: "Challenge of the Ball") is managed by the priest Satori of the Forest. The survival rate of this Ordeal is 10%. Navigating a boat on the Milky Road that winds through the forest is the only way to succeed, and Satori's task is to separate the victims from their boat and prevent them from boarding it again before it leaves the forest, leaving the victims stranded.
This Ordeal has many spherical clouds known as Surprise Balls; when these clouds are touched, something random will emerge. It might be an explosion or even a live snake, although some contain harmless things like flowers and birds. Even Satori himself never knows what might pop out. (Satori considers the harmless balls to be "duds.")
This trial was the first choice of Luffy when he, Usopp, and Sanji went into the Upper Yard, searching for the others who were kidnapped, and though Satori's Mantra abilities and experience with Sky Warfare flustered them, they ultimately conquered him and his trial.
In the English version of Pirates Carnival and Funimation's edited-for-TV dub, it is called the I.Q. Orb Test, but in Funimation's uncut DVDs, it is called the Ordeal of Spheres.
Ordeal of Iron
The Ordeal of Iron (鉄の試練 Tetsu no Shiren?, VIZ: "Challenge of the Iron") is managed by the priest Skybreeder Ohm. The survival rate of this Ordeal was 0%; the only one known to have conquered it is Roronoa Zoro.
This Ordeal utilizes Iron Clouds; a type of cloud as strong and as durable as metal, while still retaining a cloud's weightlessness and ability to change shape. Ohm uses a sword with a blade made of Iron Cloud as the primary way to kill his victims. In addition, he rigs his territory with Milky Dials full of Iron Cloud, which are linked to pressure plates on the ground. If his victim steps on one of these plates, the Dials shoot the Iron Cloud out in the form of barbed wire, shredding them.
Furthermore, this Ordeal has an attribute known as the White-Barbed Iron Deathmatch (白荊デスマッチ Shiroibara Desumacchi?), a dome made of the barbed wire, creating a cage, stopping their victims from escaping. It was later shown to be all barbed wire, making it lethal to get stuck in it. Zoro originally commented on how it was unnecessary, since he did not have any intentions to run away.
Ohm is also aided by his giant dog, Holy. Holy has been trained to use boxing with his paws, perform spinning jumps, and stand on his hind legs. He and Ohm fight very well in tandem, though he is more than capable of fighting on his own. Holy is also the one who runs around the perimeter of the ordeal to trigger the pressure plates that release the barbed wire for the White-Barbed Iron Deathmatch.
Tony Tony Chopper and Zoro were the only ones to take on this Ordeal, and though the former lost easily, the latter managed to overpower Ohm's Eisen Dial-powered sword and defeat him.
In the English version of Pirates Carnival and Funimation's edited-for-TV dub, it is called the I.Q. Iron Test, but in Funimation's uncut DVDs, it keeps its original name.
Ordeal of String
This Ordeal makes use of String Clouds; very long, extremely thin, nearly invisible string-like clouds that have high tensile strength. Shura places many long strands of String Cloud throughout a large area of forest. Travelers who pass through the area are slowly entangled in the Clouds and do not notice it until they can no longer move.
Shura also uses a lance known as the "Heat Javelin", which is able to generate high heat thanks to a Heat Dial installed inside it. It is hot enough to ignite flammable materials, such as wood, on fire with only a single stab. Additionally, Shura has a pet giant bird, Fuza, who he rides on through the air. Fuza also keeps a Flame Dial in its mouth allowing it to attack with a blast of fire breath.
This is the only ordeal that was not passed by one of the Straw Hats.
In the English version of Pirates Carnival and Funimation's edited-for-TV dub, it is called the I.Q. String Test, but in Funimation's uncut DVDs, it keeps its original name.
Ordeal of Swamp
This Ordeal is filled with Swamp Clouds; extra thick clouds that function like quicksand. If one were to get caught in a swamp cloud, they would sink. The area is filled with these sinking clouds, making it difficult to navigate. To make matters worse, Gedatsu can throw Swamp Clouds on his victims' heads. The cloud can cause whoever gets caught in it to suffocate, since no air exists inside of it. It is nearly impossible to remove the cloud as it is not solid. Gedatsu also uses Jet Dials to give a boost to his punches and Milky Dials on his shoes allow him to fly, as well as making him close to immune to sinking (unless he falls in headfirst).
In the English version of Pirates Carnival and Funimation's edited-for-TV dub, it is called the I.Q. Swamp Test, but in Funimation's uncut DVDs, it keeps its original name.
- In Funimation's made-for-TV dub, Enel mentions that the Q in "I.Q. Test" stands for "cumulus."
- In the anime, while approaching the Entrance of Ordeals, Usopp imagined what each ordeal might be based on their names.
- He imagined the Ordeal of Swamp to be the boat crashing at the end of the Milky Road and sinking into a bottomless swamp.
- He imagined the Ordeal of Iron to be multiple large iron block being dropped on them from above.
- He imagined the Ordeal of String to be climbing across a string with the threat of falling all the way back to the Blue Sea if they let go.
- He imagined the Ordeal of Balls to be a giant ball rolling after the boat about to crush it.
- He stated that the Ordeal of String would probably be the worst because of how inoccent it sounded.
- Though the Priests could not interfere with each other's Ordeals, other areas of upper yard without Ordeals set up were considered free zones, where any of the Priests could do as they please.