In 1986, Akira Toriyama and Toei Animation dropped a spirit bomb on anime lovers with their debut of Dragon Ball.
The sci-fi shonen changed the medium with a swift kamehameha, and the franchise has since spun-out multiple anime series, films, and video games. Fans keep coming back to Dragon Ball to watch as Son Goku and his gang of intergalactic warriors defend their home from rogue villains.
And, of course, they come back to check out the latest Super Saiyan transformations.
The backbone of any action-packed shonen is its ability to level up its characters for battle. Dragon Ball found its power source through the mighty Super Saiyan state, and over the years, dozens of mind-blowing transformations have been created which have floored fans.
At ComicBook.com, we've poured over the best, most badass transformations from the Dragon Ball franchise for you to check out. The collection will make even the most laidback fan dream of going Super Saiyan, but don't count on Shenron to fulfill those far-out wishes.
Honorable Mentions: Majin Boo, Cell, Frieza Transformations
There are plenty of villains through Dragon Ball who go through extreme transformations, but none of them compare to what these three guys went through. Seriously, the final forms of Cell, Majin Boo, and Frieza are the things of nightmares.
Introduced in Dragon Ball Z, these villains did their best to destroy Son Goku and take over the known universe - and they came close. Each character was introduced to fans in very different forms which made viewers underestimate their true power. But, sooner than later, the baddies stumbled upon their real potential and destroyed worlds in the wake.
To reach Cell's final form, the artificial life-form has to continually absorb powerful androids to get god-like powers. As for Majinn Boo, the normally rotund alien enters his final form by shedding weight and revisitng his childlike self who's obsessed with annihilating Earth. And, when it comes to Frieza, his final form concentrates his supernatural strengths into one sleek body.prevnext
Oozaru Vegeta Transformation
The rivalry between Vegeta and Goku is an epic one, and it was apparently important enough to turn transform one of the Saiyans into a giant ape. No, really.
Fans of the Dragon Ball franchise will be familiar with the Oozaru - or Great Ape - transformation that Saiyans can go through. The Saiyan race can exclusively enter the state should they still have their primate tails intact and absorb the light of a full moon. However, Vegeta finds a workaround for those requirements to transform into Oozaru Vegeta during a showdown with Goku in Dragon Ball Z.
And, needless to say, things get ape from there on. Vegeta, who retains his intelligence in the Oozaru state, almost ends his rivarly with Goku for good before Yajirobe and other Z Fighters can stop him.prevnext
Broly's Legendary Super Saiyan Transformation
While there are certainly legendary Super Saiyans in the Dragon Ball franchise, there's only one who can enter the Legendary Super Saiyan State: Broly.
The Legendary Super Saiayn transformation is considered a myth to many in the franchise and only spoken of in folklore until Broly enters the state. The powerful Saiyan was fabled to undergo the transformation, and when Broly finally did, the state's overwhelming power made fans do a double-take.
While Broly's Legendary Super Saiyan transformation is comparable to Super Saiyan 3, there's one major difference between the two and that's size. The Legendary Super Saiyan state enlarges Broly's body to a ridiculous size and the character's pupils disappear, leaving Broly to assume a rather maniacal appearance.prevnext
Gohan's Super Saiyan 2 Transformation
Son Goku is the defacto star of the Dragon Ball franchise, but his son still stands as a fan-favorite Saiyan in the series. Gohan was introduced to fans in Dragon Ball Z and became a formidable Z Fighter. However, the hero often hesitated during battles due to self-doubt, forcing others to come to his rescuel. So, when Gohan finally reaches Super Saiyan 2, fans were naturally blown away.
Not only does the transformation feature one of the best songs in all of Dragon Ball Z, but the moment is a bittersweet one. Gohan reaches Super Saiyan 2 during a battle with Cell and Cell Jr. The evil duo try to force Gohan into a Saiyan state by attacking his friends, and the hero loses it when Cell kills Android 16 who had pleaded for Gohan to save the Earth.prevnext
Goku's Super Saiyan 3 Transformation
When heroes go Super Saiyan, fans might say their hair goes on end - literally. The state changes the color of a Saiyan's hair to a bright blond in SS and SS2. Goku was the first to show fans that Super Saiyan 3 still turned his jetblack hair into a vibrant yellow, but there was one minor difference.
It gave him long, lucious locks that even Fabio would covet.
All jokes aside, Super Saiyan 3 is one of Goku's most powerful states. The form allows the hero to tap into every bit of power he has and levels up his usage of Ki power. Of course, the state enhances Goku's speed and agility much like other Super Saiyan transformation, but this one is in a league of its own.
After all, when Goku first enters the state to stall Majinn Boo, the transformation's resting power nearly splits the planet in two. And, in Dragon Ball: GT, this outrageous state is showed up by a fourth Super Saiyan state that only occurs when an Oozaru Fighter goes Super Saiyan. Talk about impressive.prevnext
Goku's Super Saiyan God SS Transformation
Why be a Super Saiyan when you could be a Super Saiyan God? That's exactly what Dragon Ball Super asked Son Goku when it introduced the Super Saiyan God SS state. The leveled-up form can only be reached with extensive Ki training and by absorbing the actual power of Super Saiyan god. And, when Son Goku finally debuts the transformations, fans quickly learn their wait was worth it.
Notably, the transformation turns Son Goku's hair and pupils a shade of light blue to signify his calm tranquility in battle. After all, when one enters the Super Saiyan God SS state, there isn't much in a battle that can phase you. However, in Dragon Ball Super, neither Son Goku or Vegeta can retain the transformation long enough to completely takedown enemies like Golden Frieza or Beerus unassisted.prevnext
Goku Black's Super Saiyan Rose Transformation
When Zamasu steals Son Goku's body in Dragon Ball Super, fans were understandably shocked. The villain took on the hero's physical appearance and some of Son Goku's extraordinary gifts as well. Fans learned how much of Son Goku that Goku Black (Zamasu) borrowed during an epic showdown between the baddie and Trunks, Vegeta, and Goku when he went Super Saiyan Rose.
The new transformation is equal to that of Super Saiyan God SS or SS Blue. The Super Saiyan Rose state gives Black Goku light pink hair and bright white eyes. An aura also surrounds the character that glows purple-reddish and gifts Black Goku with insane strength.prevnext
Future Trunks' First Super Saiyan Transformation
Trunk's transformation into the Super Saiyan state is one of the saddest in Dragon Ball history. Fans had been eager to see the hero transform into the over-powered state as both Future Trunks and Future Gohan tried to save their alternate universe from hostile androids. But, sadly, it took Gohan's death to prompt Future Trunk to go Super Saiyan.
In Dragon Ball Z, audiences meet Future Trunks as a teenager who Future Gohan is training. They come from an alternate reality where Android 17 and 18 have slaughtered the Z Fighters and plunged Earth into a hellish apocalypse. Future Gohan trains Future Trunks in martial arts, hoping the younger boy will one day enter the Super Saiyan state and save humanity. However, the androids brutally kill Future Gohan before he can complete Future Trunk's training, but the teenager channels his rage of his mentor's death to enter the fabled state.
And, if you want to check out Future Trunk's latest Super Saiyan form from Dragon Ball Super, then you can check out our coverage on it here.prevnext
Goku's First Super Saiyan Transformation0comments
Of course, no list of Dragon Ball transformations would be complete without Son Goku's first. Fans were introduced to Super Saiyan Goku in Dragon Ball Z as the hero fought against Freiza in what can only be called a prolonged battle. With countless bystanders dead, Goku's cheerful personality began to crumble under the weight of Freiza's onslaught, and the Saiyan finally cracked when the villain chose to kill Goku's best friend, Kuririn.
Blinded by rage, Goku enters the Super Saiyan state for the first time, and fans were legitimately frightened by the hero's change. Gone was the happy-go-lucky Goku which viewers loved. Instead, a heartbroken and merciless version of Goku took the Saiyan's place as he brutally took revenge against Freiza. While the transformation would eventually end, Goku's introduction to the Super Saiyan would forever change the character and mark a point of no-return for the character.prev