All Dragon Ball Z Arcs in Order

If you're looking to watch any classic shonen anime, you'll want to see this one by any means necessary.

by J.R. Waugh
All Dragon Ball Z Arcs and Sagas

Dragon Ball Z is possibly the most iconic, beloved Shonen series of all time with a massive multimedia franchise spanning manga, anime, films, video games, and so much more.  The premise is typical Shonen (manga marketed for young males) storytelling, where it features a cast of characters with uncanny, constantly growing, levels of strength who protect their world and universe from aliens, deadly automatons, and eldritch beings.  It’s the series that made power levels the trope it is today, and has been beloved for memorable moments across several key arcs known as sagas, each featuring powerful villains meant to be overcome by the protagonists.  Here’s our list of All Dragon Ball Z Arcs in Order!

All Dragon Ball Z Arcs in Order

Each arc, or saga, is known by the overarching threat or villain most commonly associated with it.  The sagas vary in length, but each one has plenty of iconic moments which people enjoy.  Below is our list and featured antagonists in order as they were released:

  • Saiyan Saga – Raditz, Nappa, and Vegeta; Chapters 195-241, Episodes 1-35.
  • Frieza Saga – Ginyu Force, Frieza; Chapters 242-329, Episodes 36-117, Garlic Jr. filler arc during episodes 108-117.
  • Cell Saga – Androids #17 through 20, Cell; Chapters 330-420, Episodes 118-194.
  • Majin Buu Saga – Babidi, Majin Buu, Super Buu, Kid Buu; Chapters 421-519, Episodes 195-291, Other World filler arc during episodes 195-199.
  • Gods of the Universe Saga – Beerus, Frieza, 2 films (Battle of Gods, Resurrection ‘F’) later adapted into Dragon Ball Super.

Beyond the sagas, as listed above as broad categories, most also have smaller arcs within, featuring particular villains, heroes, or events.  They also have their corresponding Manga Chapter and Anime Episode counts, with consideration for the fact that the manga directly follows the original Dragon Ball series:

Saiyan Saga


The franchise throws an immediate curveball in this saga by forcing earth’s defenders to prepare for an alien attack without their strongest warrior, Goku.  First appearance of fan-favorite supporting character Vegeta.

  • Raditz – Manga Chapters 195-206, Anime Episodes 1-6
  • Vegeta – Manga Chapters 207-241, Anime Episodes 7-35

Frieza Saga


Known for one of the most drawn-out fights in all of anime, Goku and allies travel to Namek to assemble the Namekian Dragon Balls and resurrect his comrades who were struck down during the Saiyan Saga.  This is also the first appearance of the Super Saiyan form.

  • Namek – Manga Chapters 242-281, Anime Episodes 36-67
  • Captain Ginyu – Manga Chapters 282-290, Anime Episodes 68-74
  • Frieza – Manga Chapters 291-329, Anime Episodes 75-107
  • Garlic Jr. – No Manga Chapters, Anime Episodes 108-117

Related: Read the Best Dubbed Anime of all time on The Mary Sue.

Cell Saga


Warned by a time-traveling warrior of an impending android calamity, the Z Warriors must prepare for all possibilities, while discovering a greater threat still lies concealed.  This arc gives space for developments among numerous characters, and it’s here that any surviving Saiyans are now able to transform into Super Saiyan and indeed beyond.  This is also the first appearance of Trunks, son of Vegeta, and marks the first appearance of the SSJ2 form.

  • Trunks – Manga Chapters 330-336, Anime Episodes 118-125
  • Androids – Manga Chapters 337-357, Anime Episodes 126-139
  • Imperfect Cell – Manga Chapters 358-373, Anime Episodes 140-152
  • Perfect Cell – Manga Chapters 374-388, Anime Episodes 153-165
  • Cell Games – Manga Chapters 389-420, Anime Episodes 166-194

Majin Buu Saga


The final arc of the original anime, this story jumps several years ahead and explores even greater variations on the Saiyan transformations, including fusions and the first appearance of the SSJ3 form.

  • Other World – No Manga Chapters, Anime Episodes 195-199
  • Great Saiyaman – Manga Chapters 421-431, Anime Episodes 200-209
  • World Tournament – Manga Chapters 432-445, Anime Episodes 210-219
  • Babidi – Manga Chapters 446-459, Anime Episodes 220-231
  • Majin Buu – Manga Chapters 460-483, Anime Episodes 232-253
  • Fusion – Manga Chapters 484-507, Anime Episodes 254-275
  • Kid Buu – Manga Chapters 508-516, Anime Episodes 276-287
  • Peaceful World – Manga Chapters 517-519, Anime Episodes 288-291

Gods of the Universe Saga


Leading into Dragon Ball Super, these stories reignite fan love for the franchise while exploring new directions and abilities for the characters, and includes new levels of power including the Super Saiyan God form.

  • Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods (film)
  • Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ (film)

This concludes our list of All Dragon Ball Z Arcs in Order!  Be sure to keep an eye out for other articles of ours on the Dragon Ball franchise, including Goku’s many forms ranked by strength!  And for all things Entertainment and Gaming related, see what else is in store from Attack of the Fanboy!

- This article was updated on March 31st, 2023