by Jeremy Carden
Piccolo is one of the underdog heroes of the Dragonball franchise. Like many of the characters on the show, the Namekian was overshadowed greatly in power by the Super Saiyans. It is a real shame because before Vegeta came into the picture he was Goku’s archenemy turned rival turned friend.
It is highly debated just how strong the Namek is towards the end of the Dragonball Z series especially when we are introduced to the Supreme Kai.
After the Frieza Saga, the appearance of power levels or official power readings for characters is pretty much nonexistent in the series. So don’t expect me to list off power levels that read in the 100 millions or anything like that (except for the ones in the Frieza Saga that ARE official).
What I will do is estimate Piccolo’s power around the time of the final battle with Frieza on Namek just so we have a starting point.
Frieza’s transformation into his second form marks the first time in the series where fans (and the Z-Fighters) were introduced to a character that had a power level over 1,000,000!
It seemed clear that Vegeta, Krillin and Gohan would be no match whatsoever for the murderous tyrant. After being wished back to life and arriving on Namek, Piccolo fused with one of the last surviving Nameks (aside from Dende) in order to combat the evil of Frieza. The fusion with Nail sent Piccolo’s power through the roof and he was able to fight evenly with Frieza in his 2nd form.
When Frieza began to take the fight seriously, he was able to beat Piccolo into the dirt. It wasn’t until he removed his weighted clothing that Piccolo was able to dominate the tyrant. After Frieza transformed into his 3rd form, Piccolo was completely outclassed in both power AND speed.
Overall, we can conclude that Piccolo (after fusing with Nail) was well over 1 million. He was able to go toe to toe with Frieza even with his weights on. When he took them off his power and speed went up. If I had to make an assumption, I’d say that without his weights and at his maximum power level…I’d clock Piccolo around 1,400,000.
As a side note, Goku’s base power after healing from the battle with Ginyu was 3 million which was of course above Piccolo. Just keep that in mind when I get to the Trunks Saga.
Now there was a 1 ½ year gap between the time of Namek’s explosion and Goku’s eventual arrival back on Earth from the Planet Yardrat.
Something else that I’ll mention despite being filler is the Garlic Jr. Saga. Before Garlic Jr. releases the Black Water Mist on the Earth, we see Piccolo in some mountains doing some training so we know what he wasn’t just sitting around doing nothing until Goku came back.
The threat of Garlic Jr. was soon silenced, but then came the return of Frieza who came to Earth with his father. Despite his training after the battle on Namek, it was clear that Piccolo was no match for the evil space tyrant.
Trunks arrives and defeats Frieza and his father but then delivers a warning for the Z-Fighters (mainly Goku) about how 2 Androids will arrive to kill them all.
From there it is non-stop training for the Z-Team…except for when Goku and Piccolo go to earn their driver’s license…
In any case, it was Goku training with Piccolo and Gohan to prepare for the upcoming threat!
3 years pass and the Z-Fighters square off against the Androids that Trunks warned them about (or so they thought)!
Super Saiyan Goku started off knocking #19 around like he was nothing until his heart virus weakened him. Enter Vegeta, who swooped in with his new Super Saiyan powers to finish the fight and then it turned into a chase through the mountains to follow Android #20.
Piccolo was caught off guard by the old Android and lost some Ki. After receiving a Senzu Bean from Gohan, Piccolo was smacking around #20 like he was nothing.
Krillin who was amazed by this sight was quick to comment that Piccolo might actually be as strong as a Super Saiyan causing Vegeta to give a smug look and say “Right…”
Regardless of his power, when #18 and #17 were activated by Dr. Gero…Piccolo was defeated as easily as Super Saiyan Trunks and Vegeta.
Before we get to his fusion with his “other half” Kami, I think it is important to go back and reevaluate just how powerful Piccolo was after his 3 years of training with Goku and Gohan for the Android threat.
Some fans believe Piccolo to be around the power of Super Saiyan Goku on Namek (which was 150 million) while other fans don’t believe that he could raise his power level that significantly without doing a Fusion with another Namek.
Personally, I don’t think it would be THAT unbelievable. Let me break it down:
When they first began their training, we saw Goku (base form) fighting evenly with Piccolo. It was a pretty impressive sparring match and Gohan was stunned by their battle. After they disappeared, Gohan sensed them and began fighting as well.
Keep in mind that Goku’s base power on Namek was 3 million which was above Piccolo who I wagered was around 1,400,000. Throw in a Zenkai boost after recovering from his battle with Frieza and the time he spent training on Yardrat and Goku’s power level was higher than 3 million.
Another topic fans debate over is whether or not Goku actually trained AS a Super Saiyan while preparing for the Android threat. In retrospect, he wouldn’t really have to train as a Super Saiyan. He told Trunks that while on Yardrat, he was learned how to transform at will rather than having to be overcome by anger and rage to go Super Saiyan. Of course, he wouldn’t have full control over the form until after his time with Gohan in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber.
His training partners were a Namek that he was stronger than in base form and his Saiyan/Human offspring that wasn’t as powerful as he was. If Goku turned Super Saiyan boosting his power by 50, he’d completely dominate them with no effort whatsoever.
I think that against Gohan, Goku remained in base form and trained him along with Piccolo. On the days when Chi-Chi made Gohan study rather than train (remember the deal she made with Goku was to allow Gohan to train BUT still study instead of 3 nonstop years of roughhousing), I feel that Goku and Piccolo were able to do SERIOUS training with no holding back.
Kind of like how Goten and Gohan were able to do serious Super Saiyan combat training when Gohan wasn’t holding back his powers in order to teach Videl how to fly. I think the same applied to Goku and Piccolo’s training.
We all know that these two do not hold back in their training and knowing Piccolo I doubt he wanted to fight or train with Goku unless he was at his best! Not to mention if Piccolo needed to work on a weakness or strength he could use his Multi-Form technique to “train himself.”
So, I honestly believe that at some points in their training Goku would go Super Saiyan so Piccolo could spar with a stronger opponent to test and increase the limits of his own powers. I mean the best way to get stronger is to train with someone stronger than you are.
Going back to Krillin’s statement about Piccolo possibly being as powerful as a Super Saiyan, I think there might be some truth behind that. He was easily able to dominate #20 just like Super Saiyan Vegeta was able to beat down #19. It was said numerous times by #20 that he was FAR superior to the Android 19 model so there is even more proof behind that statement.
Of course, I don’t think that Piccolo could defeat Super Saiyan Vegeta or Goku. I will say that he might be able to give Super Saiyan Trunks a run for his money. Piccolo has far more training than the Saiyan from the future and he doesn’t rely on a weapon for combat. He is smarter than Trunks and I believe if it came down to those two battling it out, I believe Piccolo would win it.
The way Trunks spoke about the Androids, it was as if he was literally saying that Frieza would be no match for them. You can see the truth in his statement because he talked about how the Androids of his time hunted him down for fun. Trunks had just killed Frieza AND King Cold with ease. It turns out that he was referring to #17 and #18, but the Z-Fighters didn’t know that. I don’t think that Piccolo would be willing to fight these new foes if he wasn’t at least as powerful as Frieza was back on Namek. His maximum power at 100% was 120 million when he fought Super Saiyan Goku.
One last piece of evidence of Piccolo’s power increase comes from looking at Goku and Gohan’s Time Chamber training. Gohan literally begged his father to not hold back during training because if he did then he would never become a Super Saiyan. When Goku agreed to fight at his maximum Gohan did go Super Saiyan and eventually went from not being able to keep up with Goku even in base form to surpassing him!
I think the same happened when Goku trained with Piccolo (except for Piccolo surpassing Goku) and this helped Piccolo get much more powerful as a result.
With that in mind, I think that Piccolo would be able to defeat the space tyrant after his 3 years of training.
Alright, now that we have that out of the way it is time to get to the “Nameless Namek!” With the Androids on their way to kill Goku after easily defeating the Z-Fighters, Piccolo journeyed to Kami’s Lookout to fuse with Kami.
The Guardian of the Earth eventually caved in and allowed Piccolo to merge with him. Piccolo (now known as Kamiccolo, the Original Namek or the Nameless Namek) met the new threat the Kami felt taking shape over the past 3 years down on Earth (without telling anyone…): Cell!
It was an impressive battle, but even though it seemed like Cell was winning it turned out to be a false front; Kamiccolo was playing possum to learn who and what Cell was along with his intentions!
This was similar to Vegeta willingly allowing #19 to absorb his Ki to confirm that the Androids absorbed their victim’s energy through the palms on their hands!
Kamiccolo said that he’d easily destroy the creature now that he had received the information needed and he was going to until Cell used the Solar Flare to escape.
On the hunt for this new enemy, Piccolo eventually went toe to toe with Android 17! It was a neck and neck battle where we saw the true power of his fusion with Kami.
Piccolo went from being knocked out by a punch to the gut from #17 to delivering blow after blow to the Android! Regardless it was clear that power wise these two were dead even, but the only difference was that 17’s energy level and stamina never decreased. The only way to truly win would be for Piccolo to destroy his robotic opponent.
Actually, Piccolo was going to destroy #17 but thanks to plot…I mean a barrier…the Hellzone Grenade wasn’t able to finish the job.
When Cell reappeared to absorb the Androids it was clear his power now made Piccolo’s seem insignificant. It came from absorbing countless human beings and increasing his power to a level here he could easily take down anything in his way (except #16).
Even Piccolo’s most powerful attack (Light Grenade) did nothing against Cell!
After breaking his neck and blasting away most of his stomach, Cell tossed the Namek into the ocean.
Goku saved Piccolo and Tien by taking them back to the Lookout to recover with some Senzu Beans. After Super Vegeta (Ascended Super Saiyan) botched up the battle with Cell by allowing him to absorb #18, Piccolo thought it best to take matters into his own hands and train inside the Hyperbolic Time Chamber himself!
When he reemerged, his power was enough to stun Future Trunks and made Goku remark about how impressive the boost in his power increase was. Of course, Goku pointed out that even though Piccolo was a lot more powerful than before he was still no match for Perfect Cell.
The last time we see Piccolo in a real battle was when he fought the Cell Jrs. alongside the other Z-Fighters.
Once again we enter into debatable territory regarding how well Piccolo was holding his own against Cell’s “children.” If you ask me I think it was clear that Piccolo was one of the “leading forces” in that battle aside from the Ascended Super Saiyans Trunks and Vegeta who were having their own trouble with ONE Cell Jr. apiece!
Cell told Gohan that aside from Trunks and Vegeta no one could hold up against his children, which was false because Piccolo was doing just as well as the Super Saiyans!
Krillin, Yamcha and Tien were obviously outclassed while Goku was still heavily damaged and weak from his battle with Perfect Cell. Tien and Yamcha had to protect him, Krillin was the one that was easily defeated and Piccolo was the “floater” pretty much helping out when needed knocking out many of the Cell Jrs. (who would annoyingly get back up over and over again).
Just a quick comment, the Cell Jrs. were holding back at first because their job was to TORMENT not KILL the Z-Fighters that was why Tien and Yamcha were able to kick a few of them around to protect Goku but were eventually knocked out for good.
Sadly Krillin was pretty much useless and the Cell Jrs. enjoyed torturing him more than the others.
Cell eventually told them to start killing the heroes in order to finally fuel Gohan’s rage enough to the point where his hidden powers would rise to the surface. That was when they started going for blood and all of the Z-Fighters (including Piccolo) were finally down until Gohan went Super Saiyan 2.
Now you are probably wondering how Piccolo was able to hold his own despite not being a Super Saiyan. Once again it is time to break things down;
I believe that after his Time Chamber training, Piccolo was at least around the power of Ascended Super Saiyan Trunks and Vegeta after their first time going in the chamber.
As I mentioned before, we don’t know the power levels of the characters after their battle with Frieza. So for this example, I’ll be using just small numbers and maybe fractions to prove my point.
Kamiccolo was more powerful than Imperfect Cell (before absorbing 1,000s of humans), even with #17 and stronger than the pre-Time Chamber Super Saiyans Goku, Vegeta and Trunks. I don’t think that Piccolo was twice the power of a Super Saiyan though.
When Vegeta came out of the Time Chamber, Goku said that he’d have to AT LEAST triple his power to stand a chance against Semi-Perfect Cell which caused Vegeta to laugh. This implies that he at least tripled his power or went above even that.
Theoretically I think that he tripled the power of his base and Super Saiyan form. However, he took it a step further by achieving the Ascended Super Saiyan form.
With that being said here is what I think; I’d put Kamiccolo as a 5 while the pre-Time Chamber Super Saiyans would be a 3. During his time training, I feel that Vegeta was not only able to catch up to Kamicclo and close the gap in their power but he took it a step further by going Ascended Super Saiyan!
Something else that might help my claim is how Vegeta reacted to Piccolo when he came out of the chamber. While Trunks was stunned at his power increase, Vegeta insulted the Namek saying that he hadn’t changed at all and that all he was doing was wasting time while the real warriors had to wait for him until he came out. On that note, Vegeta smirked as he closed the door behind him saying that Goku had better watch out because he was once again going to claim his spot as the best in the universe.
Now the one thing in this scene that really caught my attention was how Piccolo reacted to Vegeta’s statement; he didn’t say ONE word. This was a huge contrast to the Piccolo we’ve seen in the past who was quick to fly off at an insult especially from Vegeta.
If you ask me, I feel that the year spent in the Time Chamber was more than just a power-up for Piccolo. I think the time alone training allowed Piccolo to become more “united” with Kami by meditation and once again becoming the one Nameless Namek in both body AND mind.
Kami was more “mature” than Piccolo Jr. and was able to hold his head high even when insulted and this showed itself from Kamiccolo when Vegeta insulted him. If you ask me, Vegeta (like Trunks) could sense Piccolo’s power-up but refused to acknowledge it. Again proving or suggesting that the Namek was once again in the ranks of the Super Saiyans.
Going along with my above statement, I think that Piccolo at least tripled his power level allowing him to be on the same playing field as the Ascended Super Saiyans.
Despite going in the Time Chamber AGAIN for a second year separately, Trunks and Vegeta were not able to boost their powers as impressively as the first time so they might have once again surpassed Piccolo but not by that much.
When Vegeta did exit the Time Chamber the second time, Piccolo (without even turning around having his back turned to Vegeta) commented that he was impressed by Vegeta’s power but it was still not enough to defeat Cell…
The Saiyan Prince just smirked at the comment!
Finally, we get to the Majin Buu Saga which takes place 7 years after the events of the Cell Games. Piccolo was now living on Kami’s Lookout teaching Dende more about how to be Earth’s Guardian alongside Mr. Popo. Unlike Gohan, I doubt that Piccolo just sat around doing nothing. I’m sure that like Vegeta he was training in the event of another threat that would put the Earth in peril.
Here we come to another hot topic of discussion: Was Piccolo REALLY weaker than Supreme Kai?
In the manga and anime, Piccolo says that the difference between himself and Supreme Kai (Shin) was dimensions apart in terms of power. Now I’m going to be honest and say that I do not believe that Shin could defeat Piccolo…depending on the circumstances.
Keep in mind that Piccolo looked like he crapped his pants (that is if Nameks even need to use the restroom) when he thought that Shin was the Grand Kai. It stands to reason that it was the “Kami in him” that made him hesitate and ponder Shin’s true identity instead of fighting. That only makes sense because being Earth’s guardian and knowing about King Kai and other of the Otherworld deities, he would be the one to make Piccolo hesitant about facing a god of higher ranking than himself.
Piccolo even said that he wasn’t able to focus his power in order to fight Shin. Now, as I mentioned before in the Cell Saga I’d place Piccolo around the power of the Ascended Super Saiyans. I don’t think that he went without training for 7 years like most of the other Z-Fighters.
If I were to estimate Piccolo’s power during the Babidi and Majin Buu Sagas, I’d say he would probably be around the strength of the Full Power Super Saiyans (Goku and Gohan). I don’t think he was as powerful as Gohan was when he defeated Cell as a Super Saiyan 2.
Considering how Shin was scared to death of Dabura (who Goku compared to Perfect Cell), I would put Shin around the power of an Ascended Super Saiyan from the Cell Saga. So the gap between Shin and Piccolo would be there but not as big as you might expect it to be.
Now something that might blow my theory out of the water is the comment Dabura made to Babidi before attacking the Z-Fighters who thought they were well hidden up on the cliffs outside of Babidi’s spaceship; “7 in all…each of them strong…we cannot use the energy from Supreme Kai or Kibito but 3 of them possess energies that will go a long way towards reviving Majin Buu.”
Babidi tells him to get rid of the small fry (Piccolo, Krillin and Kibito), keep the Supreme Kai alive so he could deal with him personally and lure the other 3 (Gohan, Goku and Vegeta) into his spaceship.
In one way, you could interpret Dabura as being able to sense the hidden power (Super Saiyan powers) of the Saiyans despite them being in base form. I doubt he was saying that in base form the 3 Saiyans were more powerful than Piccolo. Come on now, I really don’t think that was the case.
He was probably saying that out of their group only the Saiyans had the power necessary to bring the revival of Majin Buu much sooner than originally anticipated. I can actually agree with this because Super Saiyan 2 Gohan (who Vegeta pointed out as being a lot stronger when he fought Cell) had his power stolen and his Ki alone was enough to bring Buu’s ball to nearly 50% full! Goku and Vegeta were stronger than Gohan was and during their battle in a short period of time the power lost by Super Saiyan 2 Goku brought the ball to 100%. I don’t think Piccolo would be able to do the same with his power so I can see why Dabura wouldn’t think much of the Namek’s power when compared to the Saiyans.
Aside from being turned to stone by Dabura, he easily killed (or so he thought) Babidi and then helped teach Goten and Trunks the Fusion Technique.
His “last stand” so to speak was after Gotenks’ fusion time split and he wanted to fight to the end with Super Buu. This caused Trunks to say “doing the best you can” would not be enough because even as a fused Super Saiyan 3 they still couldn’t defeat the monster!
That was pretty much the last “battle” Piccolo attempted to engage in for the series. He was absorbed by Super Buu, killed when Kid Buu blew up the Earth and revived by the Dragonballs of Namek before enjoying 10 years of peace before the end of the series.
I don’t count the “Piccolo” that we see in Buu’s mind fighting against Goku and Vegeta. Just like Gotenks and Gohan, he was just a thought form created by Buu’s mind and not the actual Piccolo.
Piccolo does appear in the events of Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return along with Battle of Gods…where he was easily dispatched by Bills with a pair of chopsticks!
Piccolo passed on fighting in the 28th World Tournament saying that “He was too old to keep up with Goku and the others.” Despite the fact that he was 31 (32 physically if you count his year in the Time Chamber) which made him only 4 years older than Gohan!
So, he might have done some unseen training between the fight with Kid Buu to Goku’s fight with Uub. However, we don’t see him fighting so I can’t really pinpoint where his power would be. It seems clear that even if he trained it was still no match for the Saiyans given how willingly he stepped down in favor of fighting in the tournament.
The same can be applied to Dragonball GT, another 10 year gap between DBZ and GT where peace reigns over the Earth. Again, we don’t see Piccolo fighting just appearing after sensing the battle between Gohan and Baby Goten. Baby had taken over Gohan and with one Kamehameha Wave it seemed like he had killed Piccolo.
He appears to save the Earth (and the universe) from the destructive force of the Blackstar Dragonballs by dying and going to Otherworld.
When the threat of Super 17 appeared, Piccolo once again stepped up and this time it was to help Goku escape from Hell. In order to help save the Earth, Piccolo remained trapped in Hell so that Goku could protect everyone from the deadly Android. During his time there, it was like he had become the “caretaker” of Hell like Pikkon was in DBZ.
Goku promised that someday he would get out of Hell and we are brought 100 years into the future where the series ends with Goku Jr. fighting Vegeta Jr. It is unknown if Goku kept his promise and got Piccolo out of Hell or not. One thing is for sure, if Piccolo was left in Hell there is no doubt his power increased considerably during his time there in a dimension full of villains from his past!
Overall, I’d say Piccolo would possibly be around the power of Super Saiyan 2 Gohan during the Cell Games had he kept up his training after the battle with Kid Buu.
What do you think?
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