"Think of it as a ladder. On the bottom rung is all of space. Higher up is Hell and then Snake Way. At the next level are the planets of the four Kais who oversee their parts of the Universe. And higher still, above the four Kais and all the rest is the Grand Kai's planet."
The Dragon Ball universes, or the Dragon Ball world, are the chain of universes within the Dragon Ball series. There are twelve in total, but the only known universes as of yet are the sixth and seventh universe. Any of the universes combined that add up to 13 are twin universes. All events that occur in Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, and Dragon Ball GT, as well as the Battle of Gods Saga and the Resurrection ‘F’ Saga in Dragon Ball Super take place in the seventh universe. However, in the Universe 6 Saga, there's a planet in the neutral space between universe six and seven where a tournament between Beerus' team and Champa's team is being held. All of the 12 universes are ruled by Zeno. Formerly, there used to be 18 universes in total, but Zeno destroyed 6 of them when he got mad.
Contents and structure
In Daizenshuu 4, Daizenshuu 7, Dragon Ball Landmark, and the Dragon Ball: Super Exciting Guides, Akira Toriyama explains that he envisioned the Dragon Ball cosmos as a big ball. This ball is divided up in two halves: the lower half is the realm of the living (or "The Universe") and the upper half is the Other World (or "The Cosmos"), with Hell located between the two halves, the Demon Realm is located in the bottom of the living universe. The Sacred World of the Kais exists on the outside of the universe.
The realm of living is divided into four quadrants based on the cardinal directions, each ruled by a Kai chosen among the Core People from World Core. There is one Check-In Station for the four quadrants of the universe, which allows its inhabitants to go to the Other World. The Kais live in the Other World, on planets positioned at the four cardinal points of the cosmos. There are roads leading to each Kai's planet; notably, North Kai's planet is at the end of a Snake Way which starts from the Check-In Station. The Grand Kai's planet is above Heaven, which is a gigantic planet in the center of the cosmos.
The planet of the Supreme Kais, the top-tier deities of the universe who watch over both the Other World and the living world, is located outside of the ball, in the Sacred World of the Kais. The Supreme Kais are Gods of Creation who provide the catalyst for life and planets to be born. In order to provide a balance to the constantly increasing number of planets, the Gods of Destruction regularly destroy life and planets. There are twelve Gods of Destruction, one for each universe, and Beerus is the God of Destruction for Universe 7 and Champa is for Universe 6. The Demon Realm, where the Demon Realm Supreme Kais live, is located on the very bottom pin/tip shaped of the universe.
In the computer game Dragon Ball Online and the manga Jaco the Galactic Patrolman, it is revealed that using a Time Machine is ultimately a violation of the laws of the universe. It is explained in Dragon Ball Online that a deity known the Lord of Time watches over the flow of time from the cosmos, and it is mentioned in Jaco the Galactic Patrolman that the Galactic Patrol can punish this kind of crime. In Dragon Ball: Xenoverse, the Lord of Time mentioned in Dragon Ball Online is actually revealed to be the Supreme Kai of Time, a female Kaioshin who protects the flow of time from a place called the Time Nest along with the Vault of Time which contains the entire history of the universe, recorded in Scrolls of Eternity (also called Time Scrolls). According to the Supreme Kai of Time, if the Time Nest was ever destroyed, the universe would cease to exist due to the universe's history being erased and destroyed with it. It is also revealed that Future Bulma and Future Trunks, were the first beings in the history of the universe to create a Time Machine and use it to alter history, resulting in the first time distortion in the history of the universe and causing the creation of alternate timelines. It is also revealed that Trunks and Bulma had not violated the laws of the universe because at that point their Time Machine was the first ever to be used. However, this fact did not the dissuade the Supreme Kai of Time from deceiving Future Trunks into believing that the use of a Time Machine was a "mortal sin." The Supreme Kai of Time convinced Trunks that the only way to atone for it was to become her assistant, resulting in the establishment of the Time Patrol to enforce and protect the flow of time. It is also revealed that the Supreme Kai of Time could have erased the changes made to the past by Future Trunks (and Cell when he traveled from his timeline) but choose to allow these alterations to the past timeline to remain, as Trunks' reasons were noble and ultimately didn't result in history turning out for the worse.
- Universe 1 & Universe 12
- Universe 2 & Universe 11
- Universe 3 & Universe 10
- Universe 4 & Universe 9
- Universe 5 & Universe 8
- Universe 6 & Universe 7
- Toriyama said that the structure of the cosmos was so that it would be easy for both him and the readers to understand.
- Akira Toriyama himself is included in the character dictionary in Daizenshuu 7, being described as the ultimate ruler of the Dragon Ball universe and a gentleman far, far greater than even the Kaioshins.
- In the video game Dragon Ball Z: Buu's Fury, Grand Kai's planet is located outside of the ball, below the Sacred World of the Kais.