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I am the legendary warrior, awakened by intense anger. I am the Super Saiyan, Son Gokū!

—Son Gokū to Freeza in "An Explosion of Anger!! Gokū, Avenge Everyone's Deaths"

Super Saiyan[1][2]
スーパーサイヤじん Sūpā Saiya-jin
Other Legendary Super Saiyan (伝説の超サイヤ人, Densetsu no Sūpā Saiya-jin)[3]
Super Saiyan 1 (超サイヤ人1, Sūpā Saiya-jin Wan)[4]
First Appearance
Manga Debut Volume #27, Chapter #317
Anime Debut DBZ095
Movie Debut Movie #8
OVA Debut OVA1
Game Debut Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu
Type Ability
Class Supplementary
Range User
Derived technique(s)
Related technique(s)
Image Gallery

The Super Saiyan, also known as the "legendary Super Saiyan" (伝説の超サイヤ人, Densetsu no Sūpā Saiya-jin),[3] is a transformation ability unique to exceptionally strong members of the Saiyan race.[3]


Before the start of the series, the Super Saiyan transformation was part of the Saiyan mythology about the ultimate fighter. According to Vegeta, it was believed that a Super Saiyan appeared once every thousand years.[3]

A Saiyan named Yamoshi achieved the Super Saiyan transformation for the first time and used it to lead a rebellion against the Saiyans on his homeworld.[5]

Note: The following contents are "C-Canon". Please read Canon policy for further information.
In the anime, the Super Saiyan legend was expounded further upon. There it was explained that the previous Super Saiyan had been so strong that he had been forced to use it only in his Great Monkey Transformation.[6]
Concludes "C-Canon" section.


Super Saiyan Son Goku manga

Son Gokū, a Super Saiyan.

The transformation into a Super Saiyan isn't a drastic one. The hallmarks of the Super Saiyan transformation are raised, golden hair, which includes their eyebrows and their tail (if they still possess one);[7] green eyes; and a slightly increased muscle mass. The Saiyan's aura becomes a vibrant shade of gold, while also becoming more erratic and flame-like.[8]

Kale, uniquely, has shown a green-tint to her ordinary Super Saiyan form[9], and is the only Saiyan with this tint. Kaflo, as a fusion of Cauliflo and Kale, would display this same Super Saiyan variation. Despite the shift in appearance, this is still treated as the Super Saiyan form.[10]


Despite my calm, quiet heart, I am the legendary warrior awakened by intense anger.

—Son Gokū to Freeza, Freeza's First Taste of Humiliation and Despair


The ki for Super Saiyan centered around the spine.

What determines whether or not a Saiyan can become a Super Saiyan is the number of "S-Cells" in their bodies. Inheriting them from parents increases the likelihood, as well as being raised in a gentle environment like Earth. Only if a Saiyan has sufficient S Cells, a gentle spirit, and a strong enough combat strength can they awaken the Super Saiyan transformation.[11]

In order for a Saiyan to become a Super Saiyan, they must first surpass the limitations of their species.[12] Afterwards, if their heart is calm and they experience an extreme emotion[13], the Saiyan can turn into a Super Saiyan.[8][14] Despite this, a calm heart can refer to that is either pure good and or pure evil.[15] Vegeta stated to Cabba that the first step to becoming a Super Saiyan is embracing one's rage.[16] Biologically, Super Saiyan builds up the ki at the center of their back, and is described as a 'tingly' feeling by Cabba. Upon learning this, Cauliflo replicated the sensation without needing rage for the transformation.[17]

After obtaining Super Saiyan, Gokū abandoned Kaiōken altogether because the power output is much greater in this form. On top of that, Super Saiyan requires the user stay in it for a relatively long period of time before bringing the user to exhaustion whereas Kaiōken brings the user to exhaustion after only a few minutes. As a result, once a person has obtained Super Saiyan, Kaiōken has completely lost all usefulness, at least until Goku achieved Super Saiyan Blue which has superior Ki usage to Super Saiyan.

Goku heart virus

Gokū suffering from the heart disease brought on early by his Super Saiyan transformation.

The Super Saiyan transformation, and all of its variants, drastically increase the Saiyan's speed, strength, and power. The user's power level multiplies by a factor of 50, as shown by Goku who had a power level of 3,000,000 in his base form, but 150,000,000 upon achieving Super Saiyan for the first time. After witnessing Gokū's Super Saiyan transformation, Tenshinhan commented that his power was in a completely different dimension; this being despite the fact that Gokū's power was drastically weakened by his heart disease.[18] Upon transforming, Gokū was able to dominate the incredibly powerful Freeza[8] and Vegeta made short work of Android 19.[15] The Saiyan also gains an increase in durability. For example, Gokū was able to take an otherwise-lethal Kikōha from the Fingertips to his head and received only a mild bruise as damage.[8] The Saiyan's body also desensitizes greatly. This was shown when just before transforming, Gokū could barely stand on his own from overusing Kaiōken and from taking a beating from Freeza. When he transformed, those injuries did not affect him in the slightest. According to Cabba, the form is also accompanied by a "tingling" sensation within their back; this sensation persists throughout the transformation, and reverting back to base state involves releasing the form.[19]

Despite these obvious advantages, the transformation is not without its weaknesses. The most obvious drawback is the increased consumption of the Saiyan's energy. Additionally, their energy becomes erratic and hard to focus.[15] The transformation also puts a great deal of stress on the Saiyan's body, especially the heart. In Gokū's case, this additional stress brought on the heart disease from its initial stages of infection of causing severe fatiqueness to the final stages of infection of causing chest pains.[20]

Personality wise, the transformation is far more extreme. When Gokū first transformed into a Super Saiyan, he became overcome with grief, rage, and an insatiable desire for revenge. Additionally, Gokū's already incredible desire for battle is increased, to the point that he refuses Kaiō of the North's pleas to not allow Freeza to reach his maximum power. At the same time, the Saiyan experiences increases in their natural arrogance to the point of extremely rash behavior. Gokū, for instance, allowed Freeza to obtain his maximum power and frequently toyed with the tyrant as a result of his newfound power.[21] In the case of Vegeta, on the other hand, the transformation increased his sense of superiority, which lead to the Saiyan challenging the superior Android 18 alone in combat, resulting in his defeat.[22]

With training, these personality flaws can eventually be overcome, allowing the Saiyan to display their usual behavior, rather than these more aggressive tendencies, while in a transformed state.[23]

After his battles with Majin Boo and the Hakaishin, Beerus, Gokū realized that mastering both his based form and the original Super Saiyan transformation would drain less of his energy, allowing him to become even more powerful than Super Saiyan 2 and Super Saiyan 3. For this reason, he stops using transformations beyond an ordinary Super Saiyan.[24] After obtaining godly ki, Gokū and Vegeta's Super Saiyan transformation is replaced by Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan; this form is merely the Super Saiyan transformation with godly energy.[25]

Ascended Saiyan

After losing his battle against Android 18, Vegeta angrily announced his plan to obtain power beyond the level of a Super Saiyan. With the threat of both the Androids and Cell hanging over them, the other Saiyans—including Gokū, Gohan, and Future Trunks—joined his endeavor to reach a level above Super Saiyan. While both Vegeta and Trunks' attempts to surpass the Super Saiyan level initially failed, the Saiyans succeeded in discovering a level beyond the first Super Saiyan when Gohan became a Super Saiyan 2 against Cell during the Cell Games.[26]

Super Saiyan Second Grade

Main article: Super Saiyan Second Grade

Super Saiyan Grade Two

Vegeta as a second grade Super Saiyan.

After training in the Room of Spirit and Time, both Vegeta and Future Trunks emerged having ascended beyond the Super Saiyan state. The Super Saiyan Second Grade (超サイヤ人第2段階, Sūpā Saiya-jin dai ni-dankai; English "Ascended Saiyan")[27] is an enhanced Super Saiyan state in which the Saiyan concentrates their power into their nerves to inflate their muscles. The result is a state that is both stronger and faster than a typical Super Saiyan.[27] However, this increased output comes at faster energy consumption from transforming and maintaining the transformation.

This stage is visually identical to the ordinary Super Saiyan transformation with the exception of more rigid hair and an increased muscle mass. The increase in power allowed both Vegeta and Trunks to dominate Cell after the futuristic android had absorbed Android 17.[28] However, the success of the form didn't last long, as it was no match for Cell once he obtained his Developed Form[29] and, in the anime, was no use against the Cell Juniors during the Cell Games.[30] Ultimately, the Super Saiyan Second Grade was abandoned in favor of the vastly more powerful Super Saiyan 2 transformation.

Super Saiyan Third Grade

Main article: Super Saiyan Third Grade

Third Grade Super Saiyan

Trunks as a third grade Super Saiyan.

The Super Saiyan Third Grade (超サイヤ人第3段階, Sūpā Saiya-jin dai san-dankai)[27], referred to by Kulilin only as a "Super Super Saiyan"[31], is a further enhancement of the Super Saiyan transformation obtained by both Trunks and Gokū during their training in the Room of Spirit and Time. This form floods the body with tremendous inner power, inflating the Saiyan's muscles to their limits.[27] Trunks used this form in order to fight Cell in his Developed Form after the Bio-Android had defeated his father, Vegeta.[32] The limits of this grade were apparent almost immediately. Despite being granted a power that surpassed Cell in his Developed Form, the increased muscle mass of this form made it difficult for Trunks to move fast enough to hit the evil Android, resulting in his defeat.[33] Because of the tremendous force needed to move the muscles even at a slow rate, the user also tires out quickly. This can be seen when Trunks was able to hit and keep up with Cell at first, but couldn't land a single blow after a while. The Super Saiyan Third Grade would be abandoned completely after Trunks' fight with Cell due to these drawbacks.

Super Saiyan Fourth Grade

Main article: Super Saiyan Fourth Grade

Super Saiyan Fourth Grade

Gokū and Gohan: two fourth grade Super Saiyans.

The Super Saiyan Fourth Grade (超サイヤ人第四段階, Sūpā Saiya-jin dai shi-dankai)[34] is a transformation achieved to address the drawbacks of the standard Super Saiyan transformation. Also known as a "full-power Super Saiyan" (超サイヤ人フルパワー, Sūpā Saiya-jin Furu Pawā),[35] these drawbacks can be overcome with strenuous training, during which the Saiyan attempts to stay in the Super Saiyan state until their bodies adapt and it becomes normal for them. Gokū invented the concept for this form after realizing the weakness of Third Grade Super Saiyan and from realizing the standard Super Saiyan was the best option in terms of balancing between strength, speed, and stamina. Because transforming and maintaining the transformation is stressful for the body, he wanted to find a way to make the transformation natural so they reap the benefits of being Super Saiyan without any of the negative effects.

Mastery of this form essentially means to start basic training all over again. The Saiyan starts by simply staying Super Saiyan all the time unless when sleeping. Afterwards, they start basic training again but on a higher scale due to having Super Saiyans.

Gokū and Gohan were the first Saiyans to achieve this more natural Super Saiyan state. Upon witnessing them in their mastered Super Saiyan form, Vegeta notes that their energy had lost its erratic traits and felt more like their normal form.[23] In addition to overcoming the energy consumption of the traditional Super Saiyan transformation, Saiyans who have mastered the form also retain their normal personalities and lack the violent qualities of the original transformation.[36] In addition, prolonged usage of Super Saiyan as well as 2nd and 3rd Grade Super Saiyans put increasing stress on the body respectively. The key point to this mastery is not increasing the energy output, but conserving energy and increasing stamina. By being able to stay Super Saiyan at all times, the user will not experience any stress on their body when living their day to day lives. When they fight, the amount of stress on their body compared to the other three forms will be very minimal, enabling them to fight much longer and more efficiently due to having lose their aggressive nature. In addition, they don't lose their speed, enabling them to outpace and outlast the other forms. These combined enhancements allow the Saiyan to focus their energy and bring out the true power of the Super Saiyan transformation—transcending even the Ascended Saiyan enhancements.[15]

Notably, the Super Saiyan Fourth Grade energy is noted by Yakon — a Majū with the uncanny ability to eat light — as the best light he had ever eaten, implying different qualities exist in this form's aura compared to other forms of light.[37] It is unknown if this applies to the raw Super Saiyan form, or the other enhanced forms and levels as well.


Saiyans are capable of pushing their power beyond the limitations of a Super Saiyan into other transformations. These forms, however, are simply variations of the traditional Super Saiyan.[24]

Super Saiyan 2

Main article: Super Saiyan 2


Gohan as a Super Saiyan 2.

Super Saiyan 2 (超サイヤ人 ツー, Sūpā Saiya-jin Tsū; English TV "Ascended Saiyan") is the direct successor to the original Super Saiyan transformation. It is characterized by more rigid hair, a more violent aura, and bioelectricity present in the aura. It has power that surpasses an ordinary Super Saiyan, and is a two times increase compared to Super Saiyan's original boost, in all ways and was first obtained by Gohan during the Cell Games.[27]

Super Saiyan 3

Main article: Super Saiyan 3


Gokū as a Super Saiyan 3.

Super Saiyan 3 (超サイヤ人スリー, Sūpā Saiya-jin Surī; Viz "Super Saiyan Level Three") is the third transformation in the Super Saiyan line and was the most powerful until it was surpassed by the Super Saiyan God. It draws out the power of the Super Saiyan to its maximum.[27] It is characterized by the disappearance of the Saiyan's eyebrows and the waist-long hair it produces. It was first achieved by Gokū during his seven years of training in the Netherworld.

Super Saiyan Blue

Main article: Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan

Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan

Gokū as a Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan.

Super Saiyan Blue (超サイヤ人ブルー, Sūpā Saiya-jin Burū), originally known as Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan (スーパーサイヤじんゴッドスーパーサイヤじん, Sūpā Saiya-jin Goddo Sūpā Saiya-jin)[38] is the result of using godly energy while transforming into a Super Saiyan. The result is a transformation that is even more powerful than the Super Saiyan God. It is characterized by the blue hair and eyes that it gives the Saiyan. It was obtained simultaneously by Gokū and Vegeta during their training with Whis.[25] As with Super Saiyan God, Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan exists in the realm of deities. As such, even someone who can sense ki can't sense its power unless they also possess powers that exist in the realm of deities.[25][39]

Super Saiyan Rosé

Main article: Super Saiyan Rosé


Zamasu as a Super Saiyan Rosé.

Super Saiyan Rosé (超サイヤ人ロゼ, Sūpā Saiya-jin Roze) is the counterpart to Super Saiyan Blue — another result of using using godly ki while transforming into a Super Saiyan. The result is a transformation that is even more powerful that the Super Saiyan God. It is characterized by the pink hair and grey eyes that it gives the Saiyan.[40] This is the form that a true god adopts when they surpass the Super Saiyan God, rather than Super Saiyan Blue.[41]

Super Saiyan Rage

Main article: Super Saiyan Rage

Super Saiyan Rage

Trunks as a Super Saiyan Rage.

The Super Saiyan Rage is a heightened transformation unique to the Trunks of the future. It is unknown how this transformation is acquired, but is seemed to be triggered through vast amounts of fury, akin to the original Super Saiyan transformation. Within this state, Trunks' power vastly exceeded Gokū and Vegeta's as a Super Saiyan Blue, and he was superior in strength to Gokū Black as a Super Saiyan Rosé.

Super Saiyan (Rampage)

Main article: Super Saiyan (Rampage)

Berserker SSJ

Kale in her berserking state.

The Super Saiyan (Rampage) transformation is a form unique to the 6th Universe Saiyan, Kale. Unlike other traditional forms, which are usually awakened through rage, Kale achieved this state through self-loathing, and it gives her a giant body and large muscles; it also alters the user's personality into that of a berserk fighter.


If a Saiyan prolongs the use of this ability it over-stresses the body to the point where it shortens the Saiyan’s lifespan. Although, this is typically not an issue because the saiyan will typically become unable to sustain the transformation in such a condition, unless something prevents them from reverting to their base form.[42]

In Other Media

Note: The following contents are "C-Canon". Please read Canon policy for further information.


Main articles: Pseudo Super Saiyan and Legendary Super Saiyan


Gokū as a Pseudo Super Saiyan.

In the movie timelines, two additional Super Saiyan transformations are present. The first of these appears in Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiyan Son Gokū and is known as the "Pseudo Super Saiyan" (疑似超サイヤ人, Giji Sūpā Saiya-jin; English TV "Super Saiyan").[27] This transformation is essentially the Super Saiyan form without its trademark golden hair and green eyes. The Pseudo Super Saiyan transformation is only temporary and eventually will disappear. It was obtained by Gokū during the battle against Lord Slug.[43]


Broly as a Legendary Super Saiyan.

The second transformation appears in Dragon Ball Z: Burn Up!! A Red-Hot, Raging, Super-Fierce Fight and is known as the "Legendary Super Saiyan" (伝説の超サイヤ人, Densetsu no Sūpā Saiya-jin). In the movie's timeline, this transformation is the true Super Saiyan spoken about in Saiyan legend—one that appears once every thousand years. It awakens in Broli, another survivor of Freeza's genocide, who fights the Dragon Team in an attempt to kill them. It is characterized as an incredibly muscular Super Saiyan, similar to a Super Saiyan Third Grade, with no irides and a green tint to the hair and aura. This form appears to surpass both Super Saiyan and Super Saiyan 2 in terms of raw power.[44][45]

Dragon Ball GT

Super Saiyan 4

Main article: Super Saiyan 4

Super Saiyan 4 DBHG5

Gokū as a Super Saiyan 4.

In the anime-only sequel, Dragon Ball GT, a fourth transformation of Super Saiyan is possible by gaining control of the power of the Golden Great Ape transformation and reverting to a humanoid form. The result is the "Super Saiyan 4" (超サイヤ人フォー, Sūpā Saiya-jin Fō), a transformation stronger than the Super Saiyan 3. While in this form, the Saiyan regains their black hair and gains red fur around their upper bodies and along their tail, as well as dark red marks around their eyes. This transformation was used to combat enemies such as Baby, Super No. 17, and Super One-Star Dragon.[46] It was obtained by Gokū, Vegeta, and their fusion, Gogeta.
Concludes "C-Canon" section.

Creation and Conception

According to Akira Toriyama in the 30th Anniversary Dragon Ball Chōshishū: Super History Book, the Super Saiyan transformation's blonde hair was made such so Toriyama's assistant would have less work to do, blackening Gokū's hair.[47] 

Toriyama also mentions that he was "feeling there were limits on mere strength", and had struggled to come up with something new. The Super Saiyan transformation wasn't originally planned, but when he came up with the idea for the 'Super Saiyan', he decided it would be for his form to change all at once — the best way to showcase an increase in power. However, the stern facial expressions were what Toriyama decided resembled a villain, and didn't believe it was okay for Gokū to look like this initially. Eventually, transformations would become the norm.[48]


  • In Daizenshū 7, it is stated that a Super Saiyan is more powerful than a Saiyan's base state by fifty-fold. Akira Toriyama later discounted this as an "exaggeration" and clarified that the Super Saiyan transformation made a Saiyan like Gokū ten times stronger.[49] However, this is inconsistent with the notion that the Kaiōken x20 increases Gokū's power by twenty-fold, as the Super Saiyan transformation is clearly stronger.
  • In the Kanzenban volume covers for volume 26 and 27, the Super Saiyan aura is shown as white-blue and blue.

Videl after "transforming".

  • In the ninth episode of Dragon Ball Super, Videl briefly adopted an appearance very similar to that of the Super Saiyan form whilst channeling the energy of her unborn daughter, Pan. The form itself is not the Super Saiyan form, in spite of similar attributes, and seems to have been the result of Super Saiyan God transformation ritual.[50]
  • In the AB Groupe dub's version of the ninth Dragon Ball movie, Vegeta shouts "Kamehameha" while transforming into a Super Saiyan.[51]
  • In the FUNimation dub of the anime, Gokū states that the transformation responds to a need rather than a desire while teaching his son, Gohan, how to transform into a Super Saiyan.[52] This contradicts the Japanese statement in the same episode, where Gokū explained to Gohan that becoming a Super Saiyan starts with anger.
  • The "tingly-back" sensation associated with the Super Saiyan and its cousin transformations most likely shares its roots with the tanden (丹田). These are three specific points of energy within the body, similar to the idea of chakras. One is located in the center of the forehead, and is associated with the third eye. The one beneath the navel is where the source of chi comes from. The third point is located in the center of the chest, close to the heart. It is associated primarily with raw emotions, identical to the initial trigger for the Super Saiyan transformation.

See also


  1. Daizenshū 6, page 109
  2. Dragon Ball GT: Perfect Files Vol. 1, page 65
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Dragon Ball chapter 86, pages 2-3
  4. Dragon Ball GT: Perfect Files Vol. 1, page 64
  5. Toriyama's Saiyan Q&A
  6. Dragon Ball Z episode 66
  7. Dragon Ball GT episode 33
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Dragon Ball chapter 125
  9. Dragon Ball Super episode 101
  10. Dragon Ball Super episode 115
  11. Toriyama's Saiyan Q&A
  12. Daizenshū 5, page 104
  13. Dragon Ball Super episode 101
  14. Daizenshū 4, page 42
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Dragon Ball chapter 150
  16. Dragon Ball Super chapter 12, pp. 11
  17. Dragon Ball Super episode 93
  18. Dragon Ball chapter 147, pages 6-9
  19. Dragon Ball Super episode 92
  20. Dragon Ball chapter 148, page 2
  21. Dragon Ball chapter 127
  22. Dragon Ball chapters 158-159
  23. 23.0 23.1 Dragon Ball chapter 197
  24. 24.0 24.1 Saikyō Jump June 2014 Issue (02 May 2014)—“Twel-Bū Mysteries” (Naho Ooishi x Akira Toriyama Q&A)
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 Dragon Ball Z: Revival of "F"
  26. Dragon Ball chapter 214
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 27.4 27.5 27.6 Daizenshū 7
  28. Dragon Ball chapters 183-184
  29. Dragon Ball chapter 189
  30. Dragon Ball Z episode 183
  31. Dragon Ball chapter 385, pp. 13
  32. Dragon Ball chapter 191
  33. Dragon Ball chapter 193
  34. Dragon Ball Z TV Special 02 Film Anime Comics
  35. Daizenshū 2
  36. Dragon Ball chapter 198
  37. Dragon Ball chapter 451, pp. 6
  38. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Vjump
  39. Dragon Ball Super episode 54
  40. Dragon Ball Super episode 56
  41. Dragon Ball Super chapter 20
  42. Dragon Ball chapter 502, page 1
  43. Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiyan Son Gokū
  44. Dragon Ball Z: Burn Up!! A Red-Hot, Raging, Super-Fierce Fight
  45. Dragon Ball Z: The Dangerous Duo! Super Warriors Can't Rest
  46. Dragon Ball GT episode 34
  47. Dragon Ball 30th Anniversary “Super History Book” (21 January 2016); Akira Toriyama Interview
  48. Daizenshū 6, Akira Toriyama Super Interview
  49. Dragon Ball Super Exciting Guide: Story Volume—The Truth About the “Dragon Ball” Manga
  50. Dragon Ball Super episode 9
  51. Dragon Ball Z: Clash!! 10 Billion Powerful Warriors, AB Group Dub
  52. Dragon Ball Z episode 156

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