One of the most unique parts of the world of One Piece is the existence of Devil Fruits. These strange fruits grant their users extraordinary powers and are be divided into three separate categories: Logia, Paramecia and Zoan.
The raid on Onigashima has highlighted a ton of Devil Fruit abilities so far, most notably many different Zoan fruit users. Kaido's Animal Kingdom Pirates rely on Zoan Devil Fruits almost exclusively, giving this Devil Fruit type a massive spotlight during the Wano arc. With all the attention, it's worth taking a look at what exactly Zoan-type Devil Fruits are.
What is a Zoan-type Devil Fruit?
Before diving into the numerous types of Zoan fruits, it is essential to understand how Zoans differ from Paramecia and Logia fruits. Zoan fruits grant their users the ability to transform into an animal, with the species depending on the fruit. In addition to changing into an animal, Zoan users can transform into hybrid forms, half-man and half-beast. These hybrid forms are especially deadly, especially within the upper ranks of the Animal Kingdom Pirates, including the Tobi Roppo and the All-Stars.
What Are Artificial Zoan Fruits?
The most prominent Zoan fruit users on Onigashima are SMILE users, also known as "Gifters" within the Animal Kingdom Pirates. While SMILE fruits are technically Zoan Devil Fruits, they do not occur naturally, and as a result, have different effects on their users.
First introduced during the Punk Hazard arc, SMILE fruits were produced by the Donquixote Family, and only Caesar Clown possesses the knowledge to create them. These fruits do not allow their users to transform entirely into a beast but instead partially transform their bodies. Even amongst SMILE users, these effects are not consistent. For some users, they gain the ability to partially change their bodies at will, as seen during the Zou arc, when a sheep SMILE user showed the ability to transform his hands into ram horns and back to hands again. However, many SMILE users, such as Holdem or Speed, are permanently altered and can no longer return to their human forms.
While their fruits do not grant them the full abilities of a Zoan fruit, they are still susceptible to the weaknesses of Devil Fruits, which include being unable to swim and being weakened by seastone. SMILE users are also at risk of falling victim to the effects of Otama's Kibi Kibi no Mi, while natural Zoan users are immune.
In addition to these weaknesses, SMILEs come with another risk: only one in ten people to eat a SMILE will be granted abilities; the other 90% instead are stripped of the ability to express anything but positive emotions, hence the name SMILE. Members of the Animal Kingdom Pirates who are rendered this way by eating a SMILE fruit join the ranks of the Pleasures.
In addition to SMILEs, there is another type of artificial Devil Fruit that exists and is present on Onigashima: a replica of Kaido's Devil Fuit. The mysterious Dr. Vegapunk, a scientist said to be 500 years ahead of the One Piece world technologically, created it. However, this Devil Fruit was deemed a failure. Despite this, it was eaten by Momonosuke on Punk Hazard, granting him the ability to become a pink dragon, albeit on a much smaller scale than Kaido. Whether this is due to Momonosuke himself being much smaller than Kaido or a result of the Devil Fruit being incomplete has yet to be revealed.
What Are Ancient Zoan Fruits?
While standard Zoan fruits allow their users to transform into animals from today’s age, such as wolves, buffalo or birds, Ancient Zoan fruits enable their users to transform into extinct species. The most notable type of Ancient Zoan is the Dragon-Dragon Fruit, which allows its user to become a dinosaur. There have been six different models displayed in the series thus far, all used by the Beast Pirates. Ancient Zoan fruits are much rarer than the standard type and are typically much more powerful as well.
One prominent example of an Ancient Zoan user is Queen, one of the Beast Pirate’s All-Stars. Queen is the Dragon-Dragon Fruit, Model: Brachiosaurus user, allowing him to transform into (big surprise) a brachiosaurus. Having been granted the ability to transform into an enormous dinosaur, it stands to reason that Queen’s power vastly outclasses those who possess a standard Zoan fruit. However, this is solely due to a brachiosaurus’ natural abilities and not due to any particular ability granted by the fruit.
What Are Mythical Zoan Devil Fruits?
While Ancient Zoan fruits are much rarer than the standard type, Mythical Zoan fruits are the rarest of all Devil Fruits, even rarer than Logia Devil Fruits. As the name implies, Mythical Zoan fruits allow their users to transform into mythical creatures. As a result, these Devil Fruit users are also granted the abilities of whatever animal they emulate.
The most prominent user of a Mythical Zoan on Onigashima is Kaido himself, who uses the Fish-Fish Fruit Model: Seiryu, allowing him to transform into an Azure Dragon. When transformed into his beast, Kaido grows large enough to encompass almost all of the Kuri region. In addition to being granted a dragon’s ability to fly and breathe flames, Kaido also gains the ability to summon lightning and blades of wind, as well as clouds of flame which he can control freely, going so far as to use them to pick up the island of Onigashima. But, with Yamato's own Mythical Zoan fruit form being revealed, it seems like One Piece is set to extend the power of Zoan fruits well beyond what even Kaido is capable of.