"Oh, that's no toothpick; that's my Power Pole! Cool, huh? My grandpa gave it to me before he died."
The Power Pole (如意棒 Nyoibō, lit. "Compliant Pole", or more correctly "Staff That Obeys One's Will") is a magical, length-changing staff that is owned and wielded by Goku for most of the original Dragon Ball series. Before Master Roshi gave the Power Pole to Grandpa Gohan (who later gave it to Goku prior to the start of Dragon Ball), it was owned by Korin. Although Goku uses it primarily as a weapon, its true purpose is to use its size-changing ability to travel from Korin Tower to The Lookout.
Creation and concept
Like the Flying Nimbus, the Power Pole is both based off and directly named after one of the original Sun Wukong/Son Goku's possessions in the Chinese novel Journey to the West, the (如意金箍棒 lit. "The Compliant Golden-Hooped Pole"); the latter is via part of the weapon's full name in Asian languages.
In both depictions, the weapon is a pole that can change size when the user wills it; however, the original Wukong/Goku's cudgel is coated with a black iron known as "crow iron", and thus is extremely heavy with its weight being over 8.5 metric tons, as well as having gold rims as per its full name unlike the Dragon Ball adaptation of the staff; it is because of this weight that Wukong/Goku could easily wield this staff without breaking it, as he did with other standard weapons beforehand on pure accident.
Starting with Dragon Ball however, many popular depictions of the pole give it a red-colored base while keeping its gold rims (though the red base is predated in adaptations such as children's books and/or Wan Brothers' Havoc in Heaven animated film).
Much like how it's used to connect from one location to another, the stick was originally a measuring rod used by Da Yu of the Xin Dynasty in order to measure the depth of the flooding waters. Eventually within the Eastern Sea, it became its sea needle for quite some time before Wukong/Goku managed to remove it and cause the seas to shake. When told by one of his fellow monkeys about the Eastern Sea Dragon King, Ao Guang, and his possible storage of weapons, Wukong/Goku decided to visit him. Though with each test run and several other attempts before his visit, several if not any weapon offered to monkey king broke under his sheer strength much to the monkey's chagrin.
The Dragon King decided to show him the staff thinking that its immense weight compared to the prior weapons he gave him would be too much, with the promise of Wukong/Goku being allowed to keep it should he be able to remove it from the base. However, after Wukong/Goku successfully removed the sea needle (causing the whole sea to shake from then on), he eventually analyzed the staff and realized its true power and took the staff for himself despite the Dragon King's objections, stating that he should've considered fulfilling his promise. Wukong/Goku was then reported to the Jade Emperor by the Dragon King on top of his other prior mentioned misdeeds in the original tale.
The original Wukong/Goku often shrunk it into a very small size in order to holster it inside of his ear when not in use. Some adaptations of the Journey to the West often show the staff to act as if it was alive, sometimes bending and moving on its own (and even deciding on its own to be Wukong/Goku's chosen wielder). Since then, the staff has been in the monkey king's possession ever since.
The Power Pole is first seen in Chapter 1 of the Dragon Ball manga and is used to inspect Bulma and her capsule vehicles. Goku stated that it was given to him by his deceased grandfather, Gohan. Korin mentioned in the episode "Lost and Found" that he had given the Pole to Master Roshi when he had climbed Korin Tower, on his request. Korin did not think anyone else would be qualified to use the weapon; though restrictions to wield the pole are unknown. Master Roshi likely gave it to Grandpa Gohan before it was handed down to his adopted grandson Goku.
The purpose of the Power Pole is to climb from Korin Tower to The Lookout above the clouds. As seen in the chapter "Carrot Top" and the episode "Boss Rabbit's Magic Touch", the Power Pole is capable of extending to the moon if its user wills it. More precisely, if the distance between Earth and the Moon in Dragon Ball is meant to reflect the same distance in reality, this means the Power Pole is capable of extending outward for at least 363,300 km (225,744 miles), or roughly 28 times the diameter of the Earth. However, in the episode "A Wish to the Eternal Dragon", it failed to help Goku, Bulma and Yamcha to escape from Pilaf castle through a window at the top. This can be justified by the fact that Goku was hungry and was unable to concentrate. It is a powerful weapon, and can never break; it can easily break a sword (as shown when it broke Ninja Murasaki's sword, and Tao's sword in half). Goku also uses it during his final confrontation against King Piccolo, and later in order to get to Kami's Lookout. It can also be utilized by the user without him actually having to touch it, as evidenced by how Goku managed to catch the young thief who stole most of his gear during the Red Ribbon Army Saga and retrieve everything besides the Dragon Radar (due to the thief selling it to a pawn shop earlier).
When Goku shows up for the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament, he is also carrying the Power Pole. After the 23rd tournament, Goku uses the pole to fight Annin in the final episode of Dragon Ball. While Goku was training with King Kai in the Other World after his death fighting Raditz, the Power Pole was again shown strung between Korin Tower and Kami's Lookout.
In the Garlic Jr. Saga, the pole is not between Korin Tower and Kami's Lookout but in Korin's possession, as seen when he bets it in a poker game with Maron and Yajirobe. The Power Pole is later seen extending from Korin Tower to the Lookout several times during the course of Dragon Ball Z.
In the Dark Demon Realm Saga, Prison Planet Saga, Dark King Mechikabura Saga, & Universe Creation Saga, Xeno Goku is equipped with his Power Pole Time Patrol as part of his Time Patroller gear, though he tends to use it as a weapon primarily in the manga & anime versions of these sagas.
Dragon Ball: The Magic Begins
In the first live action adaption named Dragon Ball: The Magic Begins, the Power Pole was named the Magic Pole. The pole is gold when it is small and can come to Monkey Boy whenever he whistles. It retracts when Monkey Boy spins it around.
Grandpa Gohan seems to have a pole similar to the Power Pole in his possession in the live action movie: Dragonball: Evolution. Grandpa Gohan is seen using his pole only in battle. It is unknown if the pole he possesses has the same abilities as the one seen in both manga and anime.
- Shadow Power Pole - A dark replica of the Power Pole created by Black Smoke Shenron along with Shadow Goku who utilizes the magic staff as his primary weapon.
- Power Pole (replica) - A replica of the Power Pole that can be obtained by Shallot as an accessory in Dragon Ball Legends.
Video Game Appearances
This is a list of video games where the Power Pole has made an appearance.
- Dragon Ball: Dragon Daihikyou
- Dragon Ball: Shenron no Nazo
- Dragon Ball: Daimaō Fukkatsu
- Dragon Ball 3: Gokuden (and its WonderSwan remake)
- Dragon Ball Z: Super Gokuden: Totsugeki-Hen
- Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Battle 22
- Dragon Ball Z: Shin Butōden
- Dragon Ball Z: Buu's Fury
- Dragon Ball: Advanced Adventure
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3
- Dragon Ball Z: Sagas
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi
- Super Dragon Ball Z
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2
- Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3
- Dragon Ball Z: Harukanaru Densetsu
- Dragon Ball: Origins
- Dragon Ball Z: Attack of the Saiyans
- Dragon Ball: Revenge of King Piccolo
- Dragon Ball Online
- Dragon Ball: Origins 2
- Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z
- Dragon Ball Heroes
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse
- Dragon Ball Fusions
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
- Dragon Ball FighterZ
- Dragon Ball Legends
- Super Dragon Ball Heroes: World Mission
"A replica of the mysterious pole that can grow as long as it needs to."
In Dragon Ball Xenoverse, the Power Pole appears as an equippable accessory that can be obtained via a wish to Shenron (the game also features a Journey To West-style outfit that can also be obtained via this same method). However this Power Pole accessory is purely cosmetic. In GT Pack 1 DLC, the Power Pole appears as part of 2 Super Skills, which can be used by the Future Warrior & GT Goku in his 3rd skill set. These Power Pole-based super skills are:
- Power Pole - This Super Skill allows the user to "Extend" the Power Pole to jab an enemy. Can be unlocked by the Future Warrior as a reward in "GT Pack 1" DLC Parallel Quest Event: "Ultimate Power, Ultimate Saiyan".
- Power Pole Combo - This Super Skill allows the user to perform a power pole-based combo attack. If the player times the combo's repeated command input correctly the user can use to Power Pole to attack up to 7x in a row. Can be unlocked by the Future Warrior as a reward in "GT Pack 1" DLC Parallel Quest Event: "Ultimate Power, Ultimate Saiyan".
The Power Pole accessory is not needed to be obtained nor equipped to perform these skills, as the Power Pole used during these techniques will simply appear and then disappears when either of the 2 Power Pole skills are used. The Power Pole can also be seen connected the bottom of The Lookout stage.
In Dragon Ball Fusions, the Power Pole appears as part of the top portion of certain clothing options such as Kid Goku's Turtle School uniforms (both marked and unmarked). There are also three Power Pole-based Special Moves used by several characters including Kid Goku, Adult Goku, Stabba, Barlot, Coohan, EX Gogeta,Gomas, Gorillin, Karoly, and Nuova Goku.
- Power Pole Combo - The standard Power Pole rush attack special move.
- Power Pole Rush - A stronger version of Power Pole Combo.
- Power Pole Frenzy - A version of Power Pole Combo even stronger than Power Pole Rush.
- Power Pole Rush - A stronger version of Power Pole Combo.
Due to the nature of the Timespace Rift it is unknown if they are the Power Pole wielded by Goku from alternate timelines (as Kid Goku from wields his Power Pole) and/or that multiple Power Poles of different origins exist.
In Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, the Power Pole and Power Pole Combo skills return as Super Skills that can be obtained by the Future Warrior along with the Power Pole accessory. The Power Pole and Power Pole Combo can both be purchased at the Skill Shop in Conton City. The Power Pole Combo becomes available for sale only after completing the main story. GT Goku can also use the Power Pole Super Skill in his Uniform 1 skillset and the Power Pole Combo Super Skill in his Uniform 2 skillset.
Additionally, if the Future Warrior is an Earthling, they can obtain the Power Pole Pro Awoken Skill "transformation" which allows them to call upon the Flying Nimbus and use the Power Pole as a weapon. The Power Pole Pro Awoken Skill can be obtained by an Earthling Future Warrior after joining the Saiya Squad as Great Saiyaman 3 in the Satan House Time Rift anomaly and then reaching Level 35. After doing this they must talk to Great Saiyaman 1 & 2 who decide that the Warrior needs something to make them stand out and suggests they figure out what it should be. The Warrior must then talk to Jaco who will suggest they use some kind of weapon and Mr. Satan who will suggest a cool vehicle. After returning to Great Saiyaman 1 & 2, the suggestion of a weapon and vehicle reminds Gohan of the Power Pole and Flying Nimbus used by his father in his youth decides that they will be perfect for the Warrior leading to Satan House Quest: "Earthling Awakening" where the Warrior will face off against Great Saiyaman 1 & 2. Completing this quest unlocks the Power Pole Pro Awoken Skill which allows them to summon the Flying Nimbus and wield the Power Pole. After the quest, Gohan will reveals that his father wanted the warrior to have them after hearing about them (though he stops himself briefly from referring to Goku as his father). While using this Awoken Skill, the Warrior can use the Power Pole to either attack and guard while moving. They can also extend the Power Pole pressing the Ki Blast button.
The Power Pole accessory can be obtained from the TP Medal Shop (open from Friday to Sunday) or by uploading save data from Xenoverse. Like in Xenoverse, the Power Pole also appears connected to Kami's Lookout.
The Power Pole is part of GT Kid Goku's moveset in Dragon Ball FighterZ, as his Special button move. It can be used as along range poke attack and as a combo extension tool.
"Pivoting Power Poles! Raditz went Super Saiyan!"
— Great Saiyaman 3 reaction to Raditz's Anomalous Super Saiyan 3 form in World Mission
In Super Dragon Ball Heroes: World Mission, Great Saiyaman 3 humorously says the phrase "Pivoting Power Poles!" in the English localization after witnessing the SDBH game world Raditz Anomalous Super Saiyan 3 transformation in the Anomalous extra dimensional space for Chapter 2, Sub Chapter 2: "An Anomaly?! The Saiyans Strike!". Additionally at the start of Chapter 3, Sub Chapter 2: "Sealas Arrives!!", when Xeno Vegeta & Xeno Goku receive their Time Patrol Uniforms after being recruited by the Supreme Kai of Time, Chronoa supplies Xeno Goku with his Power Pole in addition to a bag of Senzu Beans. However his Power Pole serves as little more than a cosmetic accessory (as it is more of a weapon in other Super Dragon Ball Heroes media such as manga, promotional trailers, & anime than in the games). Additionally, Goku (Teen) also wears his Power Pole as well.
- In the AB Group dub of the movies, Goku refers to this as his "magic wand" or "magic stick."
- In the episode "Quicker Than Lightning", Mr. Popo uses a pole very similar in looks to the Power Pole during a training session on Kami's Lookout. While spinning it, he asks Goku to not move. He then reveals the pole to not be anything but an ordinary piece of wood and that the training session was a lesson about looks being deceiving (that Goku should not always trust his eyes).
- Unused voice lines in Xenoverse 2 indicate that Yamcha, Videl, and Goten can use the Power Pole.
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse, 2015
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, 2016
- Dragon Ball Heroes: Victory Mission "Ultimate Victory Book" bonus chapter
- Dragon Ball Fusions
- Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Z, 2014
- Dragon Ball Z episode 20, "Goku's Ancestors"
- Dragon Ball Z episode 168, "Meet Me in the Ring"
- Dragon Ball Z episode 205, "I'll Fight Too!"
- Super Dragon Ball Heroes: World Mission, 2019
- DBXV2:Unused Voice Files/Custom Moves Part 2. youtube (July 17, 2017).