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Top 10 Strongest Saiyans in "Dragon Ball Z/Super"

Jeremy enjoys anime when not working as a chemist or building manager.

Saiyans in Dragon Ball Z

One of Dragon Ball Z's earliest reveals was that Goku, protagonist of the original Dragon Ball anime, actually isn't human, but Saiyan, a warrior race mostly exterminated by Frieza.

Saiyans resemble humans in appearance, but have tails and various transformations that make them far deadlier. From Great Apes to Super Saiyans, we've seen dozens of Saiyans wielding incredible power—which reign supreme? Discounting fusions and non-canon characters, these are the ten strongest Saiyans in Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball Super!

Cabba

Cabba

10. Cabba

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan 2

The first Saiyan we meet from Universe 6, Cabba displays excellent cunning, using various tricks to catch Vegeta by surprise despite the big power gap between them. With Vegeta's help, he quickly masters the Super Saiyan form, and although he's swiftly defeated by Golden Frieza in the Tournament of Power, he manages to briefly hold his own against Legendary Super Saiyan Kale.

Caulifla

Caulifla

9. Caulifla

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan 2

Like all pure-blood Saiyans, Caulifla's name is a vegetable pun, cauliflower. Like Cabba, she stems from Universe 6, the dimension that Universe 7 battles in the Tournament of Destroyers.

While Universe 6 Saiyans tend to be more gentle than Universe 7, Caulifla bucks the trend with her fiery personality and thirst for battle. With help from Goku, she reaches Super Saiyan 2 remarkably quickly, and her fusion with Kale (into Kefla) turns them into one of the strongest Tournament of Power warriors.

Kale (Legendary Super Saiyan)

Kale (Legendary Super Saiyan)

8. Kale

Strongest Transformation: Legendary Super Saiyan

Kale is Universe 6's equivalent to Broly, a legendary Super Saiyan who only emerges once in a thousand years. Though shy and timid, she's remarkably strong once transformed, able to hold her own against Super Saiyan God Goku. Kale's only issue is low base power; if she ever raises that up through training (or Zenkai, healing after damage), she'll be even deadlier.

Yamoshi

Yamoshi

7. Yamoshi

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan God (possibly)

Yamoshi is an ancient figure shrouded in mystery. We know he was the original Super Saiyan, and he bears a striking resemblance to Vegeta, suggesting Vegeta may be his descendent. Beyond that, Yamoshi's exact capabilities are unknown, with some sources suggesting he may have mastered the Super Saiyan God and even Golden Great Ape forms in addition to base Super Saiyan.

Mystic Gohan

Mystic Gohan

6. Gohan

Strongest Transformation: Mystic Gohan

Goku's first son, Gohan proves a fierce combatant from a young age, holding his own against foes like Nappa, Frieza, and Cell before his teenage years. Several sources both in and out of universe state that Gohan has greater potential than Goku and Vegeta (partially due to his half-human, half-Saiyan status), which culminates in his unique Mystic Gohan form.

Gohan's only weakness is his distaste for battle, meaning he tends to forgo training unless there's a direct threat to the world, allowing the pure-blooded Saiyans to surpass him—until he once again expands his limits.

Future Trunks Super Saiyan Rage

Future Trunks Super Saiyan Rage

5. Future Trunks

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan Rage

Vegeta and Bulma's half-Saiyan son, Future Trunks initially time-traveled to warn the Dragon Team about the Android threat, and he returns much later for help against Goku Black.

During this time, Trunks unlocks his unique Super Saiyan Rage form, putting him on a level comparable to Super Saiyan Blue. Trunks is also a skilled swordsman, channeling ki into his blade to create the Light Sword, which can turn into the Sword of Hope after absorbing a Spirit Bomb.

Super Saiyan Rose Goku Black

Super Saiyan Rose Goku Black

4. Goku Black

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan Rose

Goku Black is actually a Kai (deity) who stole future Goku's body. Then, he exploited the Saiyan healing powers to quickly obtain near limitless strength, as well as his unique pink-haired Rose form, a variant of Super Saiyan Blue.

Not only is Black immensely powerful and cunning, he also teams up with his future self (Future Zamasu), creating a deadly duo who can fuse into Fused Zamasu.

Super Saiyan Blue Evolution Vegeta

Super Saiyan Blue Evolution Vegeta

3. Vegeta

Strongest Transformation: Super Saiyan Blue Evolved

Vegeta is consistently the Z-team's second-strongest fighter after Goku. While hotheaded, Vegeta's an intelligent warrior who trains harder than anyone. In the anime, he even unlocked the perfected version of Super Saiyan Blue before Goku, though Goku had moved on by that point...

Ultra Instict Goku

Ultra Instict Goku

2. Goku

Strongest Transformation: Ultra Instinct

Whether using his myriad Super Saiyan forms or unique combat techniques (Spirit Bomb, Instant Transmission, etc.), Goku is usually the one who handles the arc's big threat. In Dragon Ball Z, he's the only singular Saiyan to unlock Super Saiyan 3, and in Super, he goes far beyond, mastering Super Saiyan Blue Kaio-ken and Ultra Instinct, making him the only one able to match Jiren in the Tournament of Power.

Legendary Super Saiyan Broly

Legendary Super Saiyan Broly

1. Broly

Strongest Transformation: Legendary Super Saiyan

Broly's an enormous threat in any media, especially his canon Super rendition. This is actually his kindest version, but he goes berserk when his father Paragus is killed, unleashing his Legendary Super Saiyan form. Goku believes Broly is stronger than even Beerus, a God of Destruction, and Broly dominates Goku and Vegeta's Blue forms at the same time; they only beat him by fusing into Gogeta. Even then, Broly rivals the fused warrior, showcasing just how formidable he is.

Non-Canon Saiyans and Fusions

Today we explored the ten best canon Saiyans, but you'll find more lethal opponents in non-canon sources (such as Dragon Ball Heroes), like Cumber, Turles, and Xeno Goku. Saiyans can also temporarily fuse, either via the fusion dance or Potara earrings, into warriors far stronger than the individuals combined, Vegito and Kefla being prime examples.

We'll see if more canon Saiyans emerge in future material, but for now, vote for your favorite and I'll see you at our next anime countdown!

© 2020 Jeremy Gill