In chapter 1016, Nami managed to save Zeus at the last moment and he now lives in the climatact.
Zeus explains that Big Mom, by wringing out his soul for Hera to consume, left him in a state of imprinting where he could possess another object, in the same way homies are created, fortunately the climatact was in Hera’s mouth. Zeus doesn’t say he lost part of his soul or was weakened, so it’s fair to assume that Hera got tingles from eating the charged cloud.
We see that as part of the climatact, Zeus is actually able to manipulate his form at will. Admittedly, the visual effect of this phenomenon was a bit confusing at first, but its usefulness is made clear a few pages later and it’s believed that it could open up a number of interesting possibilities for Nami in combat.
Nami, Usopp, and Tama enter from the back of the stage just as Bao Huang is about to deliver the message of Momonosuke’s apparent death, when suddenly Ulti attacks from behind, knocking Usopp to the ground and grabbing Tama. Ulti blames Tama for not only influencing Smile users, but also for turning Big Mom against her. Nami attempts to free Tama by attacking Ulti with Climatact Zeus and he is seen transforming his weapon into a club.
Nami herself seems put off at first by the idea of what she describes as a noticeably boring weapon, but we think Oda is showing us that Zeus could enhance Nami’s close combat abilities by transforming her staff at will. into a variety of weapons. The first thing that came to mind when reading this scene is the concept drawing of a character that appears to be Nami from Color Walk 1. In what appears to be a very early iteration of her character, she has a robotic arm and wields a massive battle axe. Although Nami’s final design looks far better, we always thought it was a cool character concept and maybe here Oda will bring back elements of proto-Nami by giving her a transformable melee weapon for close combat.
Of course, Nami’s attack doesn’t do much damage because the ancient zoans have particularly tough skin, which is the main reason why Ulti is even able to stand after Big Mom’s attack a few chapters prior. Zeus can inhabit the weather phenomena that Nami generates from the Clima-Tact, allowing him to perform lightning-based attacks as he is accustomed to if Nami generates a cloud while using it. Nami seems a little surprised when he emerges from the climatact, but it makes sense and now that his soul is bonded to Nami’s weapon, one has to wonder if he’ll be able to take on a wider variety of forms.
Nami attacks Ulti, but the lightning misses, leaving her open for Ulti to attack, but Zeus changes course and redirects directly into Ulti’s back.
This is a big win for Nami, her first big one-on-one battle in quite some time.
It’s good to see that Nami received such a boost by stealing a piece of Big Mom’s soul. Nami’s fights have never consisted of displays of brute force like Luffy, Zoro and Sanji. Instead, she relied on her wits and clever use of tactical weapons like… the climatact. The fact that Zeus provides an buff is pretty cool and a nice surprise in this fight, but going forward we think Oda will have to find the right balance to make it always feel like Nami who directs Zeus rather than him deciding his own moves.