In the world of Dragon Ball, Earth and other planets are constantly in danger. There's always some kind of intergalactic tyrant, alien demon, or android trying to kill people. Death is a constant threat to the beings in Akira Toriyama's crazy universe, and sometimes the people of Earth don't even know it!
Because of these constant threats, the Z-Fighters are sometimes forced to kill some villains who themselves are mass murderers, and we do mean mass. Death is a big part of Dragon Ball, and a lot of people die over the course of the three series. And we do mean a lot, since there are characters that have killed entire planets worth of people.
With so many killers and mass murderers in this crazy world, fans might wonder who the deadliest of all is. Some have killed a handful, others have destroyed entire cities, and one has erased entire universes. Because of the larger-scale kills, it's hard to find an exact estimate on some of the more murderous characters, but we managed to get a pretty good ranking.
With that, here are Dragon Ball's 15 Deadliest Characters, Ranked By Body Count.
Piccolo Jr. served as a villain in the last days of the original Dragon Ball series, but despite this, he's actually not all that deadly. In total, Piccolo has only killed three characters over the course of the entire Dragon Ball franchise. King Piccolo was much worse, but Piccolo Jr. doesn't have quite the same kill count as his father, only killing in the first two arcs of Dragon Ball Z.
Piccolo's first kill was Goku, whom he killed when he shot his special beam cannon through Raditz while Goku was holding him. Raditz was mortally wounded, but survived, and Piccolo finished him off afterward. Piccolo's third kill was one of the Saibamen, which is hard to count because they're not exactly people and are seen as expendable by the Saiyans who created them.
Next up is Piccolo's pupil and Goku's son, Gohan. Gohan was shown to have immense power from a very young age, which is perhaps tied to him being a Saiyan hybrid rather than a full-blooded Saiyan. But, that's a totally separate argument. Gohan's kill count is sort of similar to his mentor's: two definitive kills, and a few that are questionable.
Gohan's first kills was when he was just five years old, which is kind of messed up. When Gohan punched Sui - one of Zarbon's scouts - he fell into a lake and was never seen again. Gohan's biggest kill was, of course, Cell, whom he incinerated with a one-handed kamehameha. Before he defeated Cell, Gohan also annihilated his Cell Jr. clones, but those are hard to count since they were a part of Cell to begin with.
Trunks is a powerful warrior - there's no doubt about it. He was the second Super Saiyan to show up on screen and was also the warrior who killed Frieza after Goku left him alive. Trunks - specifically Future Trunks - has a pretty impressive kill count both before and after he returned to his timeline. He killed Frieza when he first showed up as we mentioned, but that wasn't all. Future Trunks also killed King Cold and a whole slew of Frieza Galactic Army soldiers that came with them.
When Trunks returned to his own future, he killed Androids 17 and 18 as well as Imperfect Cell, future Dabura, and future Babidi. Trunk's major kill in Dragon Ball Super was fused Zamasu, the result of Zamasu's potara fusion with Goku Black. Trunks killed the villain using a sword made out of the spirit energy from the people he was protecting.
As an adult in Dragon Ball and in Dragon Ball Z and Super, Goku spared most of the bad guys he faced. However, when he was a kid, Goku killed a lot of people, way more than he did as an adult. We're not sure of the reason - maybe he gained an adult sense of morality - but Goku's body count is mostly from his younger days.
Goku killed a good amount of Red Ribbon Army soldiers when he was a kid, including high-ranking members. He would later go on to kill King Piccolo and two of his sons, which marks the last of his kills in the original Dragon Ball. In Z, Goku only kills two villains - Yakon and Buu - and the same goes for Super, where his only kills are Frieza and the "Copy Vegeta" in a filler episode.
11 MAJIN BUU
When Majin Buu first appeared, he was much different than what Babidi and the Z-Fighters imagined; he was fat, cheerful, and had a childlike personality. This didn't make him any less dangerous however, since he was still an all-powerful demon-like alien with crazy strength, magic, and unique abilities. In fact, one can argue that Majin Buu's childlike personality made him even more dangerous.
Majin Buu is irritable, impressionable, and is always looking for fun. Unfortunately, "fun" for him usually means killing humans and/or turning them into candy to eat. The first form we see Buu in is the least deadly of them all, but that doesn't mean he's innocent. His body count is a huge jump up from Goku's. With all the cities he destroyed, Buu's body count is at least in the hundreds, possibly the thousands.
Though he comes before Majin Buu, Cell, in all his forms, is far more deadly than the later villain. When he first shows up, Cell absorbs a few humans for their energy, but that's just the beginning. Some of his more significant kills are Android 16, Future Trunks and Goku, King Kai, Bubbles, and Gregory when he self-destructed, which also killed Android 17, who was still inside him.
These deaths don't add much to Cell's massive death toll when we consider all the humans he killed. There are, of course, the ones he absorbed, but those were nothing compared to when he became Perfect Cell. With all the cities he destroyed in searching for Android 18, as well as when he was broadcasting for the Cell games, Cell's body count spikes up in the thousands.
9 ANDROID 17
We can estimate that Android 17 and his sister killed far more than the bio-android who would eventually absorb them both. The alternate future versions of the androids, that is. In the main timeline, Android 17 and 18 hardly kill anyone, but their alternate selves are a different story. In the dark timeline of Dragon Ball Z, these siblings wreaked havoc on the Earth, killing over half the population.
If we're to believe that the Earth of Dragon Ball is similar to our Earth, then the body count of these two is incredibly high. The Earth's population in the '90s (when this manga arc came out) was around 5.3 Billion, so we can easily say that Future Android 17 is responsible for billions of deaths.
8 ANDROID 18
Everything said about Android 17 can be said about his twin sister, Android 18. In the main timeline, she's not really that deadly - she even becomes one of the good guys, marrying and having a child with Krillin. Her alternate timeline self, on the other hand, did not change for the better. Both she and her brother were so destructive and deadly that they led Trunks to travel back in time to prevent their takeover of Earth.
We can use the same logic as the previous entry to say that Future Android 18 has killed billions of people. Together, they also killed most of the Z-Fighters, including Future Gohan - Trunks' teacher and the catalyst for his first Super Saiyan transformation. In this alternate future, Android 18 is one of the deadliest villains of all time.
7 SUPER BUU
Buu's second form, aka Super Buu, is also his second deadliest form. Where Majin Buu had only killed a few cities worth of people, Super Buu far surpassed his former self's death toll. In this form, Buu is much, much stronger, and he wanted to test this strength. When he wants to fight Gotenks, who isn't ready, Piccolo stalls and says there are still plenty of humans to kill. Super Buu takes Piccolo up on this "offer," but not on his stalling.
The result is the death of literally every human on Earth in seconds. Super Buu raised his hand into the air and used the human extinction attack; an energy barrage that shot pink blasts in all directions until every human not on Kami's lookout was killed. This puts his body count in the billions, exceeding the androids by killing the entire Earth's population, rather than half.
Frieza might not have ever attacked the Earth, but that doesn't mean his death toll isn't way up there. While he hasn't killed that many humans, he's definitely killed alien races, including the Saiyans. Frieza is an intergalactic tyrant/emperor/planet conquerer, and you don't get to that kind of position without killing a lot of people. We all know that Frieza killed off all but a few Saiyans, doing so by destroying the planet with a supernova attack.
This is the only onscreen destruction of a planet and its people that we saw, but we can easily assume that this isn't the first time that Frieza destroyed a planet, especially since he has an attack made for destroying things on a large scale. He usually has his minions do the dirty work, though, so he's not the highest on this list.
5 KID BUU
Kid Buu's final form is perhaps his most deadly. Again, this one is based on the assumption that alien planets have similar populations to Earth, but regardless, Kid Buu killed several planets worth of people. Though Super Buu was the form that killed the entire Earth, Kid Buu was much more ruthless. In his most pure form, Kid Buu's power comes not from his strength, but from his unpredictability and absolute lack of mercy or sympathy.
He is also childish and rash, which is what puts him so high up on this list. Why, exactly? Well, while he goes searching for Goku and Vegeta to fight them, he teleports to several planets, learning the technique from the kais. Every planet that he doesn't find Vegeta and Goku on, he destroys - killing every alien on it and spiking up his death toll.
What? Vegeta ranks higher than Buu and Frieza? Yes, that's right. See, Frieza might have destroyed a few planets in his time, but most of the time he left the dirty work to his minions and/or those under his employ/rule. The Saiyans were one of the many alien races under his control, and he used their strength and their great ape forms to conquer planets. Two of Frieza's most active "employees" were Vegeta and Nappa.
We saw Vegeta and Nappa kill off an entire species of bug-like aliens, and we know this wasn't the first planet that the pair attacked. If we're to believe that the two were active since Vegeta's childhood, then we can estimate the Vegeta has killed a good number of alien species, putting his death toll in the high billions, perhaps even trillions.
3 GOKU BLACK/ZAMASU
After experiencing first hand just how horrible mortals can be, supreme-kai-in-training Zamasu decided to inflict his Zero Mortals Plan. To do this, he used the super dragon balls to wish to switch bodies with Goku. Combining his godly power with Goku's Saiyan body, he teamed up with an alternate timeline version of himself, who wished for an immortal body, so that they could rid the world of mortals.
Still with us? Good. So, even though Zamasu is mainly seen as a villain on Earth in the Goku Black saga of Dragon Ball Super, his Zero Mortals plan applies to more than humans. The alternate future Earth was already ravaged by the androids, but Zamasu dwindled their numbers even further. He did the same for other planets with intelligent life. Though the exact number of planets is unclear, it still puts his body count in the trillions, at least.
Zamasu was a supreme kai, also known as a god of life. For every god of life in a universe, there is a god of destruction, and Universe 7's god of destruction is Lord Beerus. As a god of destruction, Beerus, well, destroys things. It's literally his job to destroy planets that are a danger to the universe. Because of this, his power is immense, and he can wield a destructive godly ki simply known as the power of destruction.
With this power, Beerus has destroyed various planets in his "career." It's not like he's malicious or anything. "God of destruction" is his job description, not his state of mind, meaning he's not out to destroy anyone for the heck of it... usually. That said, he's still most likely killed billions, if not trillions of people by destroying planets.
Aw, he's so cute, isn't he? Well, he might be one of the most adorable characters in all of Dragon Ball, but don't let his child-like appearance and demeanor fool you. Zen-Oh is essentially god. He stands above all the universes and their kais as the king of everything, the master of all of existence. This is already enough to consider him the deadliest character, since he's technically responsible for every death that ever happened in every universe.
But it gets worse. The current Dragon Ball Super saga depicts the Tournament of Power, a battle royale held between eight universes. It is being held because seven universes are slated to be erased due to low numbers of intelligent life-populated planets, and only one will survive. So far, five universes have been erased, all bat the hand of Zen-Oh, who also erased Future Trunks' alternate future and all those in it.
Who do you think is the deadliest Dragon Ball character? Share your thoughts in the comments!