Sixteen-year-old Carl can't stay out of trouble, when he sees a bully, he steps in, no matter the odds or the consequences.
For his efforts, he gets sent to the Phoenix Island correctional facility, along with a number of other orphans.
The military style boot camp turns out to be considerably more sinister than it first appears.
The orphans are pitted against each other, weeding out the weak, with the survivors joining an elite mercenary unit of super warriors. The ones that do not fit in get a dangerous medical procedure done, implanting a chip that mostly results in brain dead zombies, or rarely, a deadly elite fighter.