The city of Kuchinashi is a city tucked into the open mouth of the mountains, referred to as an egg in a viper’s nest in the local region. From a distance, neon lights of the city are able to shine through the ever-present fog and rain in the region, thanks to the area’s weather systems rolling in and being broken up by the mountains of Anima.
The city has anti-air artillery as a form of defense, alongside various sirens and air horns which can travel through large distances. Due to its distance from the capital, the city is farther from the governing council's watch. This makes it an ideal location for thieves, assassins, and other people who wish to remain hidden from the authorities.
The entrance of Kuchinashi is a dark cave, which leads into a large archway hanging over them. The city is filled with bright, neon lights of business advertisements, outfitting onto the contrasting traditional Eastern architecture that makes up the majority of the buildings seen. It is old, mysterious, and most people in Kuchinashi are either in constant direct contact with or in service to the criminal enterprise of Mistral. Even the honorable civilians in the city who are trying to make an honest living are aware of who their patrons are. Endless back alleys stretch across the city, making it a maze.
The entrance of Kuchinashi has what is called a Mummified Grimm on display. Mummified Grimm isn't actually mummies in a traditional sense, but more so warning signs and trophies of genuinely living Grimm who are horribly injured to the point of being unable to do anything. Kuchinashi’s entrance has the decapitated head of a Boarbatusk mounted on a rod, its eyes following travelers as they enter the city.
Kuchinashi is divided into three main sections:
The Central Strip, as the name implies, is the central part of Kuchinashi where the majority of public businesses are conducted. Amongst these are The Hedges, the main marketplace in the city which is connected to the crime syndicate, an unnamed Huntsman combat school, and The Skillful, a tavern known for high Huntsman activity and for making the major decisions of the city.
The Hedges are loud and overwhelming, being very busy and crowded. There’s a large amount of vocal interest in Huntsmen and Huntresses here, and the most eye-catching shops tend to be Dust stands. The east of the Hedges tends to be seedier, where people would be pushing drugs.
The Central Strip has a local hospital, as well as a local jail whose cells are supported by Lightning Dust, perfect to hold even the most capable Huntsmen.
The Lower ValleyEdit
The Lower Valley is an area known as the warehouse district, where the criminal underworld’s hidden activities are kept in the dark, even by Kuchinashi’s standards. The warehouses are all guarded like strongholds, and people don’t go there unless intending to be involved with crime.
The Upper CliffsEdit
Kuchinashi’s residential area, The Upper Cliffs, is where citizens and criminals live their daily lives. Like Mistral, the nobility is seen the farther up the mountains you go. However, there’s a twist on this in Kuchinashi: as you go higher up, the cliffs become more and more dangerous and inaccessible, just like how the crime lords prefer it to be. The higher up you are in the cliffs, the more powerful you seem to others, reflecting the culture in the city. Amongst the people residing here are the Black Sheep, a crime family, and various noble houses that are dabbling into the underworld.
The Skillful is a tavern in Kuchinashi known for being where all the major decisions of the city are made. It is run by the famous Huntress named Opal. It is physically unassuming and quaint, compared to a warm log cabin in the woods. However, inside, The Skillful is where you find Huntsmen in Kuchinashi, where Huntsman stop by when traveling, and where they find illegal activities to get pay. To enter, you need to show a Huntsman’s license at the door, but it doesn’t have to be active or originally yours to begin with–if you’ve obtained one by any means, then you’ve earned it and The Skillful.
Inside, there’s a stage for performers, photos on the wall of former Headmasters of the Huntsmen Academies, famous Huntsmen, etc, and even a poster of the upcoming 39th Vytal Festival in Mistral.
The Skillful doesn't have many rules, but it bans bar fights.
On the way up to the city, a series of unkempt ropes, gates, and drawbridges are known as the famous Kuchinashi Approach. It is a part of the city’s security system to keep out both Grimm and unwanted visitors. The Kuchinashi Approach is known for the saying; “you never enter Kuchinashi by accident, it’s not the kind of place you stumble into.”
Northern Mountain PassEdit
The northern mountain pass isn’t like the Kuchinashi Approach, instead of being a precarious path that navigates around cliffs and deeper into them. The mountain pass has been excavated in specific locations, with some dig sites having been caved in on purpose. However, there doesn’t seem to be any tunnels in the past. Dust can be found in these mountains, but they’ve also found ruins and abandoned regions in them.
In "A Rocky Start", it is revealed that parts of the mountain pass are armed with Scroll-activated bombs. In the episode, Sil uses these bombs to cause a landslide to try and kill the protagonists of RWBY: The Grimm Campaign.
In "SHEATHE ME!", it is revealed that the mountain pass is home to an "older than old" civilization which has been left in ruins over time.
There are several infamous crime syndicates residing in Kuchinashi:
- The Black Sheep reside in the city's Upper Cliffs.
- The Hana Guild, or simply the Hana, is a crime family in Mistral located in Kuchinashi, known for moving narcotics. It’s an old and powerful family, and their sigil is a flower with blade-like petals.
- The Wave is another criminal organization in Kuchinashi, known for being a relatively newer organization that deals in stolen goods, such as high tech Atlas Military merchandise, and similar products. They are rivals to the Hana Guild.
In "Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back", Team RNJR encounters a signpost in the middle of a fork in the road while on Anima. Kuchinashi is indicated to be in the same direction as Mistral, to the right of the fork.
It is the main setting of RWBY: The Grimm Campaign.
Four Huntsmen from Mistral: Pyke Rite, Arrastra Skye, Asher Mora, and Fenix Nemean are sent to Kuchinashi. En route to their mission, they find the city is being attacked by the creatures of Grimm. Lancer Grimm attacks nearby gates in the city, but they are slain before breaching its walls.
There, they learn that the Grimm have been acting strangely near the city, avoiding attacking people but targeting specific parts of the city–the Lancers in the gate being an example, and another being a case where a Beringel snuck into Kuchinashi's walls, avoided the entirety of the Central Strip, and instead chose to wreak havoc in the Lower Valleys inside a Hana Guild warehouse. It is unknown as to why.
In recent history, Javi Pastel took the Pastel mining company into Kuchinashi as an offshoot for his family business to make a name for himself. There, he found that the Kuchinashi mountains were host to an ancient civilization that was left in ruins, and contained a treasure trove. Javi's findings caught the interest of the Hana Guild and the Wave, who tried to buy off an item from Javi. After Javi sold one item to the Wave, the Hana Guild gained a new leader which stopped the dealing of narcotics and changed the organization into a more shadowy group. Soon after, Pastel turned out dead as the Wave claimed another item from his estate before their rivals.
Currently in Kuchinashi Edit
Formerly in Kuchinashi Edit
Currently in Kuchinashi Edit
- Kuchinashi is the Romanized spelling of the Japanese word for the gardenia. In Japanese floriography, the meaning behind this flower is "secret love".
- In the episode "Action Time!", Kerry asks the RWBY Wiki to include details about the gate in the Kuchinashi Approach as the MVP of the episode because of their resistance when faced against attacking Grimm. The gates are named as follows: Bill Gates, Alexander the Gate, and Gate #3.