One Piece: Why Vegapunk can help Luffy activate Gear 6

According to a theory, in an hypothetical Gear 6 form Luffy could influence even time and space (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)
According to a theory, in an hypothetical Gear 6 form Luffy could influence even time and space (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)

One Piece chapter 1061 has gifted fans the long-awaited reveal of Vegapunk's appearance. However, a discussion has sparked within the fandom, as most fans believe that the young "woman" who showed up in front of the Strawhat Pirates is not the true identity of the scientist.

To find the answer to this enigma, fans will have to wait for One Piece chapter 1062, which will be officially released on October 9, 2022. Partial leaks may be available in the preceding days.

In any case, One Piece fans have already started formulating theories on how Vegapunk will interact with Luffy and his recently awakened powers. Follow this thread to learn more.

Disclaimer: This article contains major spoilers from the One Piece manga up to Chapter 1062 and reflects the writer's personal views

Luffy's new Devil Fruit powers, explained

Luffy's Gear 5 transformation, which was crucial to achieve victory against Kaido (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)
Luffy's Gear 5 transformation, which was crucial to achieve victory against Kaido (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)

The founder and captain of the Straw Hat Pirates, Monkey D. Luffy, is a young boy who aims to find the One Piece and become the King of Pirates. He is an exceptional warrior who has faced every sort of challenge, achieving the advanced versions of Observation, Armament and Conqueror's Haki. After defeating Kaido in a fierce battle, Luffy achieved the status of Emperor.

Luffy ate a Devil Fruit, originally believed to be the Paramecia-class Gom-Gom Fruit, which grants his body rubber-like properties and also allows him to use transformations called Gears to enhance his speed, strength, and versatility. During the battle against Kaido, the Gom-Gom was revealed to be a Mythological Zoan, the Human-Human, Model: Nika.

After being struck with Kaido's Thunder Bellow Bagua, Luffy passed out. However, shortly afterwards, a smile appeared on his face, and his body seemed to transform. Somehow, he was unconsciously able to bring his Devil Fruit to awaken, unleasing a whole new level of strength. Luffy called this stage the Gear 5.

Due to the Nika-Nika's true power being dormant until then, Luffy's body transformations were limited, appearing to have a similar nature to most Paramecias. After achieving the Awakening, the Fruit's true power as a Mythical Zoan was unleashed, giving Luffy a new transformation.

His hair and clothes turned white, his eyes glowed red with white ring-like pupils, and white clouds floated around his neck, giving him the look of the mythical Sun God Nika. Luffy's body was gifted with greater physical capabilities and, especially, unbelievable peculiar powers, granting him complete freedom to fight following his imagination.

As a result, Luffy was turned into a "Warrior of Liberation", a legendary individual who would fight while bringing joy and freedom to those around them. This newfound ability was, unsurprisingly, called "the most ridiculous power in the world". Luffy was able to extend the rubbery nature of his body to the environment around him, affecting and reshaping the surroundings.

His body gained freedom and durability far surpassing those of his previous Gear transformations, to the point of becoming somehow cartoonishly malleable. Luffy was also enabled to increase his body and limbs to such a massive size that he could grab and manhandle Kaido despite the latter's enormous size as a dragon.


One Piece 1061 revealed that Egghead Island is Vegapunk's headquarter

The alleged appearance of Dr Vegapunk, as seen in One Piece chapter 1061 (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)
The alleged appearance of Dr Vegapunk, as seen in One Piece chapter 1061 (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)

Vegapunk is one of the greatest scientific geniuses that the One Piece world has ever known. He is the lead scientist at the World Government's disposal, with unparalleled scientific expertise and technological advancement. His genius is such that he is said to be more than 500 years ahead of the other scientists.

Vegapunk is responsible for the modification of former Seven Warlord member Bartholomew Kuma into a cyborg. He also worked on the creation of Pacifista cyborgs, the old models, and possibly the new ones, the Seraphims, as well.

Vegapunk's past is mostly unknown. Before working for the World Government, he was part of MADS, an unauthorized research team that also included Judge Vinsmoke, Queen, and Caesar Clown.

He currently leads the Special Science Group, abbreviated as SSG, an eponymous team and project. After the latest Levely, the institution of the Seven Warlords of the Sea was abolished, and SSG was established to replace them. As a result, they recently created the Seraphim Unit, a new powerful version of the Pacifista cyborgs, imprinted with the peculiar powers of the Lunarian race.

Vegapunk's personality and beliefs are yet to be revealed. From what is known, he seems to be an honorable individual: before making Bartholomew Kuma a cyborg, he granted him his final wish as a human being, which was to program him to protect the Strawhat Pirates' ship, the Thousand Sunny, until their return.

One Piece chapter 1061 showed the Strawhats arriving on an island called Egghead. Luffy, Chopper, and Jinbe were overwhelmed by the raging sea together with Jewelry Bonney, and got separated from the rest of the crew. Later, Bonney revealed to them that the island they had just reached was Vegapunk's place.

Meanwhile, the Thousand Sunny was attacked by a giant mecha shark and the remaining Strawhats were thrown underwater. Suddenly, a weird giant mecha warrior appeared and attacked the shark.

Afterwards, a mysterious young woman left the cabin of the mecha and stood in front of them. To everyone's shock, the young "woman" revealed his identity, claiming to be Vegapunk.

Whether or not that's entirely true, it will most likely be uncovered in the next One Piece chapters.


How Luffy could go further than Gear 5, with Vegapunk's help

Vegapunk's advanced technology and knowledge of Devil Fruits could help Luffy achieve a Gear 6 form (Image via Toei Animation, One Piece)
Vegapunk's advanced technology and knowledge of Devil Fruits could help Luffy achieve a Gear 6 form (Image via Toei Animation, One Piece)

According to some fans, after having recently unlocked his Gear 5 form, Luffy could achieve another transformation, which would be an improved version of the previous one. This would allow him to maximize his rubbery stretching powers, to the point of being able to stretch time and space.

This theory likened Luffy's various Gear transformations to Chopper's Rumble Ball modes, claiming that the Gear 5 is something still unrefined, akin to Chopper's Monster Form. The point that was highlighted was that, unlike his subordinate, Luffy's transformations do not only rely on Devil Fruit power, but on Haki as well.

During his battle against Kaido, Luffy's Haki reserves were drained. However, after unlocking the Gear 5 transformation, he was able to use Haki-coated attacks again, even unleashing the full strength of his Advanced Conqueror's Haki.

According to the aforementioned theory, this was only possible because Luffy's Devil Fruit powers allow him to stretch everything, his Haki included.

It appears that the strongest characters in One Piece are the ones with the most powerful Haki. Willpower is one of the main themes of the series, and Haki is nothing but the power of will.

Hence, the man who wants to become the Pirate King, i.e. the freest man in the world, will have to extend his will to the utmost limits. This could be a hint at Luffy stretching his Haki, which is based on will.

The maximized effect of stretching everything, Haki included, would allow Luffy to affect even time and space, factually extending them. This could be very helpful in his destined fight against Blackbeard, whose Dark-Dark Fruit, on the contrary, works by compressing time and space through a black hole.

As One Piece author Eiichiro Oda recently stated, he is trying to emphasize his main character as someone who is funny even during the most heated fights.

Although he was aware that the general audience of the series would not like this concept, Oda wanted to highlight the contrast between Luffy's cartoonish humor and Kaido's deadly seriousness.

Thus, it makes sense that the author could try to impress his readers with something as astonishing as a power that is able to influence even time and space.

Vegapunk is an essential figure who has researched Seastone, Devil Fruits, Lineage Factor, artificial lifeforms, and gigantification. Hence, it appears likely that the scientist could be interested in Luffy's Gear transformations, that are related to his Devil Fruit powers.

The meeting between Luffy and Vegapunk has already been foreshadowed. During the Enies Lobby Arc, Koby spoke to Luffy about the scientist, emphasizing that Vegapunk studied Devil Fruits. The author recently hinted that the mysterious scientist will be the one to explain how Devil Fruits work.

It was stated that all Zoan Devil Fruits contain a will of their own within them. This explains why Luffy unwittingly had all the bystanding people start to laugh, as his Devil Fruit grants the power of a mythical figure who used to bring smiles and laughter to everyone.

According to some fans, Vegapunk's scientific resources could help Luffy increase his control over Gear 5, to the point of fully mastering the form, achieving a perfected Nika-Nika transformation where the Devil Fruit's instinct doesn't take over the user anymore. This stage would be the Gear 6, allowing Luffy to stretch everything without boundaries or limits.


Final thoughts

Luffy's Nika-Nika powers appear to be limitless, however they need to be refined (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)
Luffy's Nika-Nika powers appear to be limitless, however they need to be refined (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, One Piece)

After leading the Wano alliance to triumph over Kaido and Big Mom, Luffy was established as one of the Four Emperors. He recently awakened his true Devi Fruit, unlocking the Gear 5 transformation, but he will have to train more to fully understand the capabilities of his powers.

With the new Egghead Island Arc starting, Luffy will likely meet Vegapunk, the person who understands Devil Fruits more than anyone in the world. According to some One Piece fans, the scientist could help him master his Devil Fruit powers, subsequently creating a new form, the Gear 6.

This would allow Luffy to have control over time and space, by limitlessly stretching everything around him.

With the One Piece series nearing its end, the Strawhats are about to enter the decisive phase of their adventure. They will need to improve even further to face the next challenges.

For the same reason, it also arrived for the author the moment to start uncovering the secrets that he teased fans with. The interaction between Luffy and Vegapunk seems to be an excellent way to do both.