Even though Frieza didn't arrive until midway through Dragon Ball Z, he has been the closest thing the Dragon Ball franchise has had to a permanent antagonist. He has come back in more movies than any other villain, continued to be a presence in Dragon Ball Z even after being defeated on Namek, showed up in GT, and has become a major part of Super. Suffice it to say, with so much time devoted to him in Dragon Ball, Frieza has developed a lot of new powers.
Obviously not every appearance by Frieza has been an official part of the canon, but it's still intriguing to see powers he has had in what-if scenarios. So pulling from the official story, plus the movies, and the games, we're going to look at how much Frieza's abilities have evolved over his many years of being an enemy to Goku and his friends.
These are 15 Powers You Didn't Know Frieza Has Had.
15 PSYCHIC ABILITIES
Despite Frieza's incredible power when we're first introduced to him on Namek, one disadvantage he does have is that he cannot sense ki. Initially the Z Fighters are the only characters who possess this advantage, making it necessary for many of the villains needing to utilize scouters to figure out where other characters are, and how strong they are. Of course, the scouters quickly become nullified due to so many fighters having the ability to suppress their power levels.
Still, even with Frieza being unable to detect ki, that doesn't mean he can't sense other fighters. While on Namek he is able feel that a Saiyan is growing in power somewhere on the planet, which causes him to call for the Ginyu Force to help. It's unclear where Frieza gained this ability, but he definitely puts it to good use in avoiding being unaware by the Z Fighters and their growing power.
14 AN EXTENDABLE TAIL
Lots of villains throughout the Dragon Ball franchise have had tails that they put to good use during combat, but few integrate their tail into their fighting style like Frieza does. We've seen that his tail is strong enough to not only lift people off the ground, but even strangle them. With how much use Frieza gets out of his tail, it may even seem like it has changed length at points to better accommodate his attacks. That's probably because it has.
The most blatant proof that Frieza's race can alter the size of their tails comes from Chilled, whose tail clearly gets longer when he wants to attack someone with it. This would account for why Frieza's tail doesn't always seem that big, but then at times, he's able to loop it around someone's neck and still have a lot of tail left to spare.
It's too bad Frieza can’t use that power to extend his height since he’s always been one of the notably shorter fighters in the franchise.
13 A FOURTH TRANSFORMATION
Something that made Frieza one of the most distinct villains when we first saw him in action was how many transformations he had. Sure, we had seen Vegeta transform into a Great Ape, and Zarbon used a transformation, but Frieza took it to another level. He transformed three times against the Z Fighters, and then continued to alter himself further by using 100% of his power. Frieza has since unveiled his Golden form as well, but in the video games he had one additional transformation even before he ever went Golden.
In the game Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai-- Another Road, Frieza is given a new form, though it's one we've seen before, albeit on a different character. Cooler's Revenge shows off the fourth transformation for Frieza's race, which is a form that turns their eyes red and creates armor around their face. Admittedly Another Road does not show Frieza in this form, but Cooler does confirm his brother gained the form. And seeing as we've seen Frost's transformations match what Frieza could do, it would only make sense Frieza's fourth form would match Cooler's in the game.
12 THE KAMEHAMEHA
Even though the Kamehameha is thought of as Goku's signature attack, it's actually a move many people have used. Of course Master Roshi was the teacher of the attack, but the likes of Gohan, Krillin, Trunks, Goten, Yamcha, and Cell have all used the move as well either in the anime or the movies. Yet you probably wouldn't expect Frieza to ever want to use a move so associated with Goku. And in the anime, he certainly hasn't. The video games are a different story, though.
In Super Dragon Ball Z, you actually can see Frieza bust out the Kamehameha. Now sure, the games are full of what-if scenarios, but seeing Frieza use this move is no less bizarre. You don't exactly see Goku whipping out Frieza's finger beams or Death Ball, even in the games. On the other hand, Frieza does seem like the kind of villain who'd enjoy humiliating Goku by beating him with his own move.
Even though there is a lot of talk about using the Dragon Balls to gain immortality, it's not a trait many villains in the franchise have had. There are characters like Vegeta - who did want immortality, but gave up on that goal after deciding to defend the Earth. And then there are the majority of the characters who sought immortality only to die before they could get their wish.
However, thanks to the Dragon Ball games, we can get a taste of what would have happened if someone like Frieza became immortal.
Frieza has gained immortality in several of the video games, such as in Supersonic Warriors. However, even with immortality, Frieza has usually found some way to screw it up and leave himself vulnerable to being defeated. Looks like even in the video games, the antagonist still can’t be allowed to win at the end of the day. Maybe immortality isn't all it's cracked up to be.
10 CREATING COPIES OF HIMSELF
Anyone who has seen the movie Return of Cooler will remember how Cooler is able to defeat Goku and Vegeta by creating an army of clones of himself that are able to overwhelm the two Saiyans. Since Cooler is more machine than anything else by the time of this movie, that ability isn't that surprising. However, it turns out Frieza has actually done something pretty similar in the games.
In Battle of Z we see Frieza gaining the ability to create clones of himself to handle his battles for him. They are not as dangerous as the real thing, but being able to create more allies is always an extremely useful ability to have. Even if it just helps occupy an opponent, some extra fighters are handy to have around, even for someone as proud as Frieza. Besides, Frieza would no doubt think that the only army worth keeping around would be an army comprised of himself, so it fits him in that sense.
9 RECORDING OTHER CHARACTER'S MOVES
While this ability likely would not be limited to Frieza, he's the only one who actually seemed to have plans to make use of it. It comes from the scouters that many of the villains use in Dragon Ball Z up until the demise of King Cold. While the scouters are typically only mentioned for their ability to gauge a person's power level, Frieza reveals one of their other functions in his fight with the Namekian warrior Nail.
Nail quickly proved to be outmatched against Frieza, but Nail did still have some surprises at his disposal. For one, when Nail loses his arm during the fight he demonstrates the Namekian ability to regrow their lost body parts. In the English dub of this scene, Frieza notes the usefulness of this move and uses his scouter to record it for future study. It sounds like some of Frieza's current techniques may have been learned this way as well.
8 SUPERVILLAIN FORM
As if Frieza needed any more transformations, Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 introduced the new form known as the Supervillain form. This form functions pretty similarly to Babidi's ability to turn people into Majins. This power puts the user under the control of another, but also comes with a massive boost in strength. One major difference is that the Supervillain form comes with an additional cost in the form of draining away some of the user's life.
Frieza is not the only one who gains access to this power, but he is part of a rare group. The other users are some of the most dangerous villains in the franchise, including Cell, Broly, and Omega Shenron. However, Yamcha is also included in that list, so maybe the Supervillain form isn't as elite as it may sound. Still, it looks cool and comes with a lot more power, so maybe the association with Yamcha could be overlooked.
7 THE DESTRUCTO DISK
Your first instinct might be to assume that this is incorrect and that we are thinking of Frieza's Death Saucer. While the Destructo Disk is similar, it's actually not that hard to tell the two moves apart. The most obvious difference is the color of the two attacks. Krillin's signature move has always been yellow, while Frieza's Death Saucer is purple. But there's also a difference in versatility, as the Death Saucer is shown to be far more controllable.
Frieza definitely uses the Death Saucer against Goku on Namek, but he later employs the Destructo Disk in Dragon Ball GT. When Goku winds up in Hell he is confronted by Cell and Frieza, who are looking for a rematch against the Saiyan. Both villains break out some new moves, including Frieza using Krillin's famous Destructo Disk. Unfortunately it accomplishes little since Goku easily defeats them without even having to power up.
6 CONTROL OVER HIS SEVERED BODY PARTS
You may have thought Majin Buu was the first villain who was able to control his lost body parts, Frieza was actually ahead of the curve on that one by several years. The easiest to recall example of this might be from Resurrection 'F', where Frieza is wished back to life, but returns in the diced-up state that Future Trunks left him. But even in this chopped-up state, we still see Frieza is sentient and able to blink his eye. That doesn't sound so useful, but he may be able to do more than that.
In the manga, when Future Trunks cuts up Frieza, the villain isn't immediately blasted into vapor. Instead, Frieza's chopped-up body hits the ground and for a brief moment he actually reassembles himself, but with nothing to hold him together, Frieza just falls apart again. However, it wouldn't be surprising if this ability did one day prove useful for saving his life.
5 MAJIN FRIEZA
The Buu saga was a strong demonstration of the power that the wizard Babidi has. Not only was he able to mind control more powerful warriors to serve under his will, but Babidi was also able to tap into their potential to make them even more powerful. It was noted at the saga's World Martial Arts Tournament how much more powerful Spopovich was in comparison to previous years, and we quickly learned this was thanks to Babidi. We even saw Vegeta become a Super Saiyan 2 for the first time after accepting Babidi's power.
In a couple of the games, Frieza gets put under Babidi's control as well. Admittedly, Frieza probably wouldn't be thrilled about being someone else's servant, but it does come with a major power boost. It actually allows him to pose a challenge to the heroes, even during the time when Buu has appeared.
You might think it's only when Cell shows up that regenerating enemies become something the heroes have to worry about. But we had seen previous foes utilize this ability, including Frieza. Piccolo was pretty much the first major threat to regrow his body parts, but Frieza kept the trend going when he arrived.
To be fair, Frieza’s regeneration is nowhere near as powerful as a Namekian’s. In fact, after seeing Nail regenerate, Frieza even comments how it’s an ability he wants to study further. And yet, when Frieza gets part of his tail cut off while fighting the Z Fighters, we see he does possess some degree of regenerative properties. When Frieza transforms into his final form, his tail appears perfectly whole again. Maybe it’s just a lizard-like thing where he only regrows the tail, but still, considering how much Frieza utilizes the appendage, he’s lucky he doesn't have to worry about being deprived of it.
3 FIVE-WAY FUSION
In a game like Dragon Ball Fusions obviously the various fusion techniques played a major role in the story. But it's not just unlikely fusion pairings like we have seen in other Dragon Ball games. As interesting as it is to fuse two characters like Krillin and Cell, the novelty of that has worn off by now. Dragon Ball Fusions took things a step further by not just allowing two characters to fuse, but also introducing five-character fusions.
The major villain of the game is the result of such a merging of personalities, and naturally Frieza is part of the bunch. Frieza and Cell's personalities are the dominant ones in this new creation, and the two aliens use their newfound strength to devastate the world and kill a Super Saiyan Blue Goku. This rare new ability temporarily puts Frieza's new form at the top of the food chain among all the fighters.
2 RAGE POWER UP
It has been pretty well established by now that for Saiyans, getting angry is an advantage to them. Many of the strongest Saiyans ascend to their greatest heights after becoming infuriated against their opponent. It's through this method that Goku is able to become a Super Saiyan in the first place, becoming enraged at the death of Krillin at the hands of Frieza.
This also seems to apply to some of the antagonists, though. For instance, in the Battle of Gods storyline we see Beerus becoming more dangerous after he becomes irritated at being denied the food he wants. An aura surrounds the god, noticeably increasing his power and causing everyone around him to take notice. Frieza exhibits this same ability during the Resurrection F saga, beginning to glow in his Golden form after becoming frustrated with Goku. So Frieza might be more like a Saiyan than he thought or would like.
1 FREEZING POWERS
Considering all the members of Frieza's race have tcold-related names, you'd really think at least one of them would have shown off ice powers by now. But apparently in the manga and anime it's just another pun from Toriyama, like how all the pure blood Saiyans have vegetable-related names. But in the video games we actually have seen Frieza be able to live up to the powers you'd imagine him having based on his name.
In Supersonic Warriors 2 one of the attacks Frieza and his brother Cooler are able to use in tandem is creating an ice storm to damage their opponents. Obviously it's not canon that Frieza can do this, but it's still pretty neat to see. Elemental powers certainly stand out among all the typical energy blasts fighters usually utilize. But maybe ice attacks are just a bit too on the nose for Frieza to use in the main canon.
Do you know any other interesting abilities about Dragon Ball's longest reigning antagonist? Sound off in the comments!