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Sabaody Archipelago is the final island in Paradise, close to the Red Line. Though it is called an archipelago, it is actually a massive mangrove forest growing out from the middle of the ocean with each tree of the forest serving as an "island" on which people live. Since it is just a group of trees and not an island like those found in the Grand Line, it has no magnetic pull for which to affect a Log Pose.
Due to the place being in close proximity to the part of the Red Line bordering the first half of the Grand Line and the New World, it is a highly visited rest stop for all sorts of travelers to prepare before entering the New World. Aside from its unique environment and it being a booming business hub, it is notable for the World Nobles who visit there and a thriving slave trade supported by them. One notable slave hunting group are the Flying Fish Riders whose headquarters are several kilometers east of the area.
Sometime after Sengoku's resignation and Sakazuki taking charge, the base of operations for Marine Headquarters has been relocated to G-1 in the New World. This results in Sabaody Archipelago becoming even more lawless.
The Sabaody Archipelago is, in actuality, a massive mangrove forest in the middle of the ocean made up of 79 separate trees known as Yarukiman Mangrove. Their name is a pun on the Japanese phrase, "Yaru Ki Manman", which means being pumped up or motivated. The Yarukiman Mangrove trees are the largest mangroves in the world and are strong enough to grow from the bottom of the ocean to the top. They do not sink into the ocean during high tide like other mangrove trees, and the texture on their barks has such a distinct look that they resemble large candy canes. Each tree is called a grove and serves as an island for which people live on. People can get from one grove to another via the various bridges built connecting around the many tree roots.
The seventy-nine trees are divided into several different areas, with each one dependent on the number of the area.
- 1-29: A lawless area where pirates and bounty hunters run amok
- 1: The Human Auctioning House is here. The World Nobles, Kid and Heart Pirates gathered here before the Incident of the Celestial Dragons.
- 2: Zoro wandered through while making his way to Grove 1.
- 8: The Hound Pets hideout is here where they were told about Camie from Kairiken and Minoruba.
- 12: A warning sign against the Marines is here. After leaving Grove 13 the Straw Hats are confronted by PX-4, a Pacifista. During the fight the Straw Hats began to realize they weren't fighting Kuma. After taking it down the Straw Hats are too tired out when Sentomaru and PX-1 step in to finish them while Rayleigh defends Zoro's group from Kizaru's attack. During the fighting Kuma shows up and starts taking out the Straw Hats (including PX-1) one by one until the Straw Hat Pirates were eradicated. Robin made her way through here to the Thousand Sunny.
- 13: Shakky's Rip-off Bar is here. The Straw Hats went here to find a coating specialist and learned about the other Super Rookies on the archipelago.
- 16: A warning sign against the Marines, with a dead Marine strung up, is here. A group of bounty hunters (including Kairiken and Minoruba) attempt to ambush the Straw Hats.
- 17: Robin meets Franky on the Thousand Sunny and wait for the other Straw Hats.
- 21: Drake stops a fight between Urouge and Killer while Law watches.
- 22: A human shop, where Luffy, Hatchan and Pappag met Marin while looking for Camie, is here.
- 24: A restaurant is here where Bege, Bonney and Hawkins dined while a fight broke out between Kid and Apoo. Charlos wandered through where he harassed a hospital's crew (including Marie and Judy) before he encountered Zoro and Bonney while Bege, Hawkins, Apoo and Urouge watched. News of Ace's execution reaches Apoo, Bonney, Urouge, Bege, Hawkins and Drake who knew it would mean war. Kizaru confronts Hawkins while a Pacifista's fight with Urouge spills over before Drake joins while Apoo watches. During the fighting Urouge is taken down before Apoo's sneak attack on Kizaru failed and lost along with Drake and Hawkins.
- 27: A port, where Kizaru began his attack, is here. During the attack he destroyed the top part of the mangrove before his forces confronted Bonney and Bege while Apoo watches. A pirate receives damage from Kizaru via Hawkins ability.
- 30-39: Sabaody Park, an amusement park with bubble-based attractions
- 30: A shopping mall, where Nami and Robin discuss the discrimination of fish-men and merfolk from humans, is here.
- 31: Devil Dias's bomb collar blew up in his escape attempt from his masters before his arrest while Sentomaru watches.
- 32-34: Sabaody Park is here. The Straw Hats had fun on the rides before Camie was kidnaped. As part of Sabaody Park, Sabao Dome is on Grove 33 where Brook's final world tour concert was held.
- 35: Antonio's Graman is here along with hotels for people who have permission to pass through Mary Geoise. While Chopper gallops through he runs into Usopp and Nami who confirm the fakes.
- 36: Sentomaru waits for Kizaru before heading out.
- 40-49: A tourist area, filled with shops and souvenir stands
- 40: In the wake of Blackbeard's earthquake, a tidal wave forced spectators of the Summit War here. The Marines had the grove blockaded to prevent the Straw Hats escape. Sanji and Zoro search for Chopper before running into Luffy.
- 41: The Straw Hats docked here before the Summit War. After the crew was defeated, the Rosy Life Riders guard the Thousand Sunny. Zoro and Sanji make there way to the Thousand Sunny through here when they noticed the fracas on Grove 46.
- 42: The Marines had the grove blockaded to prevent the Straw Hats escape. While shopping for fish, Sanji ran into a fisherman who told him that Zoro went down in a coated pirate ship before he sliced it in two. The Straw Hats anchored the Thousand Sunny here before leaving for Fish-Man Island. The crew fully reunite before Catacombo's battleship is stopped by Hancock and the Kuja Pirates while Perona and the Kamabakka okamas stall second and fifth platoons letting descent.
- 43: The Marines report the Straw Hats actions.
- 44: Five kilometers east lies the Flying Fish Rider's base. The Thousand Sunny was moved here after the Summit War defended by the Rosy Life Riders from the Coffee Monkeys while Camie, Hatchan, Pappag and Shakuyaku watch before Bartholomew Kuma appeared. Sanji comes ashore thanks to the Kamabakka okamas. The Marines had the grove blockaded to prevent the Straw Hats escape.
- 46: The Straw Hats assembled here where there plans for the New World were told to the new recruits before Zoro and Sanji brought Luffy to them. During the commotion, the Straw Hats are exposed as fakes by Sentomaru when Luffy takes down PX-5 before Zoro and Sanji take out PX-7 while Rayleigh watches.
- 47: Chopper runs into the Straw Hats before Robin is kidnapped. Afterwards the others were bumped into by Luffy who knocked them out with Haoshoku to avoid confrontation. When both groups reunited, Chopper runs away while the Marines confirm they are the real crew.
- 50-59: A shipping area
- 50: In the wake of Blackbeard's earthquake, a tidal wave forced spectators of the Summit War here.
- 60-69: Local headquarters for the Marines
- 66: The Marine base, where the plan to take down the Straw Hats was made, is here.
- 70-79: A hotel town
The location of the mangrove forest is crucial in the travels through the Grand Line due to its approximation to the only two crossing points on this side of the world. Although there are several paths that traverse the equatorial ocean, the only two points that cross to the other side (Mary Geoise and Fish-Man Island) are on exactly the same place, with one at the top of the Red Line and the other in a massive tunnel under the Red Line in the depths of the ocean. Because this is the only point where one can cross into the New World, the location of the Sabaody Archipelago makes it ideal for anyone who needs to prepare to cross this section of the ocean by either means. Thus, everyone from the high-ranked nobles to the traversing pirates use the Sabaody Archipelago as a rest and preparation point as they look back on their previous journeys and prepare to enter the New World.
The Sabaody Marine base is a Marine base located on GR 66 of the Sabaody Archipelago and is responsible for its security. When the Straw Hat Pirates first arrived here, the Marine Base's influence started at GR 30 and ended up at GR 79, letting GR 1 to 29 be a lawless area where pirates and bounty hunters ruled. After the Marine Headquarters' base was moved to the New World, the Marine Base's influence weakened and the Archipelago became less safe and more difficult to protect.
Crisis at the Sabaody Archipelago
During the preparation for the Summit War of Marineford, the Sabaody Archipelago Marine Base had to protect the Archipelago completely on its own. When it learned that Silvers Rayleigh was going to be sold as a slave, it surrounded the Human Auctioning House with all its troops. After Monkey D. Luffy punched Saint Charlos and the Straw Hat Pirates attacked the Auction House, the Marine Base was ordered to prevent them, the Heart Pirates and the Kid Pirates to escape until Admiral Kizaru came with some Pacifistas. The Marine Base failed as it was completely defeated by the three pirate crews who managed to escape.
Two Years Later
When the Sabaody Marine Base learned that the Fake Straw Hat Crew were recruiting new members, it sent marines to GR 46 to confirm that they had come back to the Archipelago. After the investigating team "recognized" the Fake Pirates, the Marine Base decided to evacuate the neighbor groves and to send its troops to prepare for battle. The captain of the Science Unit, Sentomaru, told a Marine officer that he was going to GR 46 on ahead, with PX-5 and PX-7, explaining that the Marine Base was underestimating the Straw Hat Pirates.
The Marines sent six platoons to capture the Straw Hats. However, due to various interruptions, they were stalled and were unable to catch them. The reasons were:
- The first platoon (led by Sentomaru) were busy with the pirates gathered by the impostors while PX-5 and PX-7 had been destroyed by Luffy, Zoro, and Sanji;
- The 2nd (1st back-up) platoon was stalled by Silvers Rayleigh;
- The 3rd (2nd back-up) platoon was incapacitated by depression (by Perona's Negative Hollows);
- The 4th (3rd back-up) platoon was attacked by giant beetles (presumably on Heracles orders);
- The 5th (4th back-up) platoon was unable to pursue due to their gunpowder being wet (due to the Weatheria scientists);
- The 6th (5th back-up) platoon was unable to pursue due to their passage being blocked by okamas who were "crushing" their hearts.
A marine ship also attempted to stop the Straw Hats from leaving but were stopped by Hancock, who makes up an excuse for herself by saying that the marine ship was in her pathway. In the anime, the giant bird that Chopper came in on also tore down the sails of the ship.
The people native to the Sabaody Archipelago have learned to live both within and alongside the trees and the large bubbles that they create. Each tree houses a different use, many of which are for the various commerce for those who visit the area. Like the trees, the bubbles are also used for many different and varied means, going from transportation devices such as bubble bikes called Bon Chari, to personal hotel rooms, to even special helmets used by the World Nobles to prevent them from breathing the air of commoners.
For those who wish to move further along the Grand Line, the mangrove is important in order to stock up on supplies and prepare themselves for the journey to cross the Red Line. Most normal travelers generally stay here and wait until they are given permission to cross the Red Line on foot by Mary Geoise. The rest, such as pirates, must typically seek "coating mechanics" found around the archipelago to cover their ships in the special resin produced by the trees. It is this resin that allows ships to go underwater to Fish-Man Island.
Slavery and Discrimination
Due to the proximity of the archipelago to the holy land of Mary Geoise, World Nobles are sometimes seen going around the place. While they provide the mangrove wealth and prosperity, their views on commoners make life horrible for both the inhabitants and visitors alike. Since they see commoners as completely below them, World Nobles generally expect absolute obedience shown. Anyone that crosses their path is expected to bow and give way for them. World Nobles also do what they like around town without question, whether it be taking civilians against their will or shooting them on sight. Anyone who does not coincide with what they do is punished severely.
Because of how World Nobles view commoners as nothing more than objects that they can freely do whatever they want with, this supports and legalizes a booming slave trading industry that caters to their desires, a practice that is normally banned in the rest of the world. As a result, the mangrove is home to many kidnapping gangs and bounty hunters who do business with the trade. These various slave traders would thus capture anyone who presents a fine prize and sells them for the highest bidder to do whatever they desire. Once sold off to a World Noble, or anybody just as rich enough to afford a slave, these slaves, from ordinary people to even the fiercest of pirates, are treated like trash after capture.
While people from all sorts of trade suffer from Sabaody's slave industry, the ones that suffer the most are Fish-Men and Merfolk. This stems from the fact that Sabaody still holds onto the old notion that these races are classified as just another type of fish. This notion was abolished two hundred years before the current storyline when the World Government allied with Fish-Man Island. Sabaody however still practices this horrid fact along with slavery. As a result, since Fish-Men and Merfolk are seen as nothing more as fish, they are captured regardless if they are criminals or not. Most of them are thus forced to stay away from the mangrove. This is such a horrible thing especially as the childhood dream of most of them can only be found in the mangrove, this being to ride the large bubble ferris wheel in Sabaody Park. Those that dare to venture into the mangrove to do business, fulfill their childhood dream, or otherwise, must wear disguises and pretend to be human to avoid being captured.
Pirate Activity in Sabaody
Being the last stop before going to the New World, pirates land on Sabaody to prepare for the dangers that lay ahead. Pirates must stop here if they wish to have their ship coated so that they may proceed to Fish-Man Island. However, they cannot do things as freely as they did before reaching the mangrove, due to the mangrove being practically next door to both Mary Geoise and Marineford. Pirates are in the most dangerous possible place to be in when in Sabaody because of this. Aside from the multitude of strong bounty hunters and kidnapping gangs native to the mangrove, they have to be aware that they may be attacked at any moment by either Marines or by the World Government itself. In fact, because of the proximity to the World Government and its forces, notorious pirates do not even get to roam freely on Sabaody as they are captured by the Marine forces that are normally stationed in the mangrove unless these forces are attending something else.
With the various dangers before them in Sabaody, pirates must, therefore, restrain themselves else they attract unwanted attention onto themselves. They cannot pillage or even have fights amongst themselves. Above else, they shouldn't attack any of the World Nobles that frequent the mangrove. Should they attack a World Noble for whatever reason, a large number of Marines led by a Marine admiral is dispatched to eliminate any and every pirate within the mangrove. This fact did not, however, keep Luffy from punching one in the face after Hachi was shot by him.
After the base of Marine Headquarters has been relocated to G-1 in the New World due to the decision of Fleet Admiral Sakazuki, Sabaody Archipelago has become more lawless with pirates being able to act more freely than before.
Everything on this island is bubble-based, with the bubbles from the Yarukiman Mangroves used in a variety of fashions. The bubbles can be manipulated into a cart known as a Bon Chari by simply sitting on it. Many other bubbles are used for the rides and attractions of Sabaody Park, including the ferris wheel, drop tower and roller coaster. Bubbles can also be transformed into individualized hotel rooms at certain lodging areas on the island. It is also so far the only place shown other than Fish-Man Island where coating can be done.
Translation and Dub Issues
Before the actual Romaji spelling of the archipelago was revealed, the name of this location was translated as the "Shabondy Archipelago" by various scanlation groups based on the Japanese pronunciation of the word.
Syabon, pronounced [ɕabon], is the direct romanization of what's written in katakana (シャボン). But, as stated before, it's actually the Portuguese loanword Sabão, meaning soap. Sabão is pronounced [sɐˈbɐ̃ũ] in Portuguese, ending with a nasal vowel, similarly to the French translation savon (French being another Romance language).
Japanese people automatically replace any nasal vowel by a compound of 2 sounds, the second being the nasal "-n". So, Portuguese Sabão is pronounced as Shabon in Japanese. As English does not have any nasal vowel too, it would also be hard for English native speakers to pronounce the second syllable in Sabão. The same goes for Filipinos who pronounce soap as "Sabon", only without the "-y" in it. On Toei's official One Piece website, on the Log Collections, it's titled, "Sababody."
- This is the only place so far that the Straw Hat Pirates have been to in two different sagas; it was where they separated during the Summit War Saga and where they reunited at the beginning of the Fish-Man Island Saga.
- It is the second location that was visited twice, the first being Water 7.
- Its name echoes the Portuguese word Sabão meaning soap and corresponds to the island's unique environment where soap-like bubbles are produced by the trees.
- Archipelago – Wikipedia article on archipelagos.
- Mangrove – Wikipedia article on mangroves.
- Soap – Wikipedia article on soap.
- Japanese words of Portuguese origin – Wikipedia article explaining the usage of Sabao and other Portuguese derived Japanese terms.