Punk Hazard is an island located in the New World and is the first island the Straw Hat Pirates disembark on (after receiving a distress call from someone on the island) after arriving in the New World.
It is the main setting of the Punk Hazard Arc.
Layout and Locations
The island is surrounded by a sea of fire on one side and icebergs on the other. In the center, there is a hole where seawater flows into it, which separates both halves of the island and has sharks living within. This lake was originally a crater formed at the epicenter of Akainu and Aokiji's death match and then later filled with seawater, though the aftermath of the duel did leave behind patches of burning and frozen waters in the lake. This hole has fierce wind and currents running across it. As touched upon by Robin, the extreme temperature differences between the ice and magma lead to an equally extreme difference in air pressure, forming massive gale-force winds.
The Burning Lands (炎の土地 Honō no Tochi?) is the HOT south-western half which was most affected by Akainu's Devil Fruit ability. A fiery sea, filled with dead fish bones, surrounds the burning lands which was caused by the aftermath of the duel, making it impossible for ships to dock at the main entrance.
Before the poison gas incident occurred, it was once a military base of the World Government where the island's main port was located, but the disaster caused the base to be abandoned. The entrance is bolted with a danger sign, hazard stripes, and the logos of the Marines and World Government. The external border is heavily fenced in and inside lies a military base. Due to the area's volcanic heat, all of the buildings were melted and deformed, and the streets riddled with lava pits. A large partially melted skull is located near the melted base. The artificial dragon created by Dr. Vegapunk was roaming in the melted base before it was slain by the Straw Hats. Caesar Clown keeps his pet, Smiley, confined in a warehouse on this half of the island.
The Ice Lands (氷の土地 Kōri no Tochi?) is the COOL north-eastern half which was transformed by Aokiji's Devil Fruit ability. Four years ago, this half was the area where the poison gas incident originated from, causing the original inhabitants to flee the island. Since the duel, this half has become a frozen region with gigantic ice mountains and freezing winds, surrounded by numerous drifting icebergs. The Yeti Cool Brothers operate as assassins in the mountains, taking orders from Caesar.
The Ice Lands also house numerous laboratories and underground facilities which were once used in chemical warfare research headed by the Government's leading scientist, Dr. Vegapunk. The labs stretch across the mountain sides. Most of them were destroyed by the Poison gas fallout and few remain standing after the admiral duel.
- Further information: Third Research Institute
The First and Second Research Institutes (第一研究所, 第ニ研究所 Daiichi Kenkyūjo, Daini Kenkyūjo?) are behind the mountain where the third institute was built on. Caesar built his secret poison gas bomb here and after the explosion were left in ruins. Both groups of Straw Hats regrouped here along with the Biscuits Room kids.
|— Caesar to Luffy on Punk Hazard's status|
When the island was a secret research station, it was home to hundreds of researchers, the most noticeable being Dr. Vegapunk and Caesar Clown. Vegapunk in his spare time created artificial dragons on the island that were used as guards and pack mules. The island also held prisoners who were brought to the island to be used as guinea pigs. The government soldiers and Marines who brought them to their torturous fates also resided on the island.
When the disaster happened, the surviving researchers and the government soldiers all escaped the island but the prisoners were left behind for dead because of the government's perception of pirates as worthless. Those that did not die were paralyzed from the waist down. However, not all prisoners were effected as some still retain mobility in their lower bodies. The artificial dragons survived the disaster without any noticeable harm. Caesar Clown returned to the island after escaping the government prison, where he created various balloon powered contraptions for the prisoners to allow them to regain some semblance of their former abilities and convinced them to serve him. Those prisoners, crippled in a poisonous wasteland and lost all hope saw him as a saint and were blindly devoted to serving him calling him "Master" or "M" which Caesar exploited for his agenda. Their blind worship made them follow every order Caesar Clown gives to them, even when said orders endangers the lives of their comrades.
With the arrival of Trafalgar Law, the prisoners were given new animal legs to replace their damaged legs and became centaurs and satyrs. They served Caesar Clown in two branches, the patrol division who scout and attack any intruders on the island and the hazmat division who subdue intruders using various gases created by Caesar like poison gas and sleeping gas. The hazmat division were also responsible for kidnapping the children brought to the island. Though each division were comprised of centaurs and satyrs respectively, they can be mixed depending on the skills of the members.
Smiley, a gigantic blob of poison was created by Caesar Clown when he collected, compressed and "fed" a Devil Fruit to the gas making it sentient. Because of its destructive nature, he kept it confined in the burning lands. With the Straw Hats and G-5 Marines invading his Lab he ordered the creature's release and later sacrificed his pet just to impress the brokers who were watching the incident via video feed.
Brownbeard, was the former leader of the centaur patrol unit and a former New World Pirate. He used to serve Caesar in return for saving his life when he arrived on the island, but when he saw first hand the true extent of Caesar's kindness (ordering him terminated for being captured) he defected and aided the Straw Hats on the island.
A large number of children were held and taken care of in the research facility who were all kidnapped from their home islands and lied to about being ill. These children were secretly used in Caesar Clown's giant research and were tricked into taking a drug whose addictive properties prevent the children from leaving.
|Caesar Clown ‡||Monet †||Rock *||Scotch *||Trafalgar Law ‡|
|Chadros Higelyges||Smooge||Fen Bock||Chappe||Run|
|Smiley †||Dragon Number Thirteen †||Small Dragon †|
Guinea Pig Children ‡
|Kuzan||Sakazuki||Kin'emon||Straw Hat Pirates|
- †: 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.
Satyrs (or "fauns") are half-sheep half-human creatures. They are human from the torso up with the exception of the horns. Their lower halves are made up of the rear end and hind legs of a sheep. Unlike centaurs, they do not possess forelegs. They first appeared in hazmat suits kidnapping the Straw Hats on the Thousand Sunny (except Brook) with sleep gas and took them to Punk Hazard. After escaping their cell and encountering giant children, the Straw Hats fought them and knocked off their gas-masks, revealing them to be satyrs. While several have been seen, the only one named so far is Fen Bock.
They were originally fully human, though the majority of them lost the use of their lower bodies due to an experiment gone wrong four years prior to the present. When Trafalgar Law arrived on the island, he was asked to use his ability to give them new legs.
Harpies (ハーピー Hāpī?) are half-bird half-human creatures. Their legs and feet are those of a bird's, and instead of arms and hands, they have wings, but their torso and head are that of a human. In ancient Greek mythology, they are generally always female. Only one has been seen so far. Though the specifics are unknown, it appears she was created by the use of Trafalgar Law's power as she was seen in a flashback with human limbs.
At least twenty years prior, Gigantification experiments were already being conducted on Punk Hazard. At the time, scientists there were attempting to artificially create the ancient giants. The resultant group, though achieving the desired sizes and strengths, were seemingly lacking in intelligence, and became considered to be failures. Kaido eventually arrived to the island and purchased these failures, dubbing them as Numbers of his crew.
Four years prior to the current storyline, when the island was lush and full of life, the World Government used the island as a research station for chemical weaponry, with Dr. Vegapunk as the Head Researcher and Caesar Clown as second in command. Pirates who were sent here instead of prison were used as guinea pigs in their research. Unknown to everyone except a few people including Vegapunk, Caesar Clown conducted a secret experiment with a poison gas bomb. Vegapunk grew tired of covering up Clown's recklessness and dismissed him from the team, but Caesar took this as a sign of jealousy and activated the bomb in a fit of rage, spreading poisonous gas throughout the island and killing off plant life and hundreds of inhabitants. Many of the survivors including Dr. Vegapunk were evacuated in time but the prisoners that served as test subjects were left behind. Caesar also escaped but was caught and imprisoned for building an illegal mass murder weapon. It was at this time that Punk Hazard was closed off by the Marines and the World Government.
One year after imprisonment, Caesar escaped and returned to Punk Hazard, where he used his Devil Fruit ability to purify the island of poisonous gas, but in truth he collected the gas and merged it with a devil fruit, transforming the gas into a sentient, mountain sized creature he named Smiley. He even kept it locked up and hidden in a warehouse in the Burning Lands should he ever need to release it. He then recruited the surviving prisoners and gave them artificial legs in the form of gas powered balloons since they were left paralyzed from their lower bodies due to a strong neuro-toxin in the gas. The survivors gladly accepted him as their master, not knowing that he caused their paralysis.
Another year later, when most of the remaining poison gas had dispersed, the island was known to the Marines as a large, abandoned wasteland making it the perfect battleground for Akainu and Aokiji's battle over the position of fleet admiral, after the end of the Summit War of Marineford. The duel lasted for ten days and the impact and scale of their battle caused one side of the island to permanently be embroiled in flames, including the water around it, while the other half became permanently frozen over. In the end, Akainu emerged victorious and the island was left transformed into its current state, a desolate wasteland of fire and ice.
Brownbeard eventually arrived at Punk Hazard on his own after suffering a crippling defeat at the hands of Basil Hawkins at Foodvalten, leaving his legs useless. He was rescued by the paraplegic former prisoners of Caesar and in gratitude, became Caesar's subordinate.
A few months before the Straw Hats' arrival, Trafalgar Law arrived on the island and made a compact with Caesar, who agreed to keep Law's presence a secret in exchange for healing his underlings. Law, using his Devil Fruit power, turned the surviving prisoners, Monet, and Brownbeard into half-animal, half-human creatures.
Punk Hazard Arc
Kin'emon arrived on the island some time later looking for his son Momonosuke who managed to sneak onto a boat to Punk Hazard. While on the island he was confronted by Law and was quickly defeated and cut into three pieces, with his head taken to the facility while his torso and legs were left out in the raging elements. The torso, still retaining its arms and Kin'emon's two swords, blindly attacked centaurs until one survivor managed to send a distress call which was picked up by the Straw Hats and Tashigi who intercepted the call. The Straw Hat Pirates decided to head to Punk Hazard and investigate the distress call, unaware that Smoker was following their trail.
When Smoker, Tashigi and the other G-5 Marines arrive near the island, Smoker was surprised that there was still so much poisonous gas coming from the island, when all of it was dispersed two years ago. This prompted him to investigate the island. After navigating through treacherous icebergs, the group eventually made berth and discovered the laboratory where they encountered Trafalgar Law at the entrance, who claimed it was his vacation house.
Later during the arc, after Caesar captures Law, Tashigi, Smoker, Luffy, Robin, and Franky, Caesar causes poisonous gas to spread across the island, using Smiley. The poisonous gas, called Shinokuni, spreads across the island making it inhospitable everywhere except in the research facility. But Caesar, desperately trying to petrify his enemies, allows the gas inside the lab's section A and B.
- Punk Hazard's fate after Caesar Clown's actions is similar to what happened to Pripyat after the Chernobyl disaster.