Once shouting "Change, now!" with his arms outstretched, Ginyu fires an energy wave from his mouth into the opponent's mouth. When it is finished, Ginyu is in the opponent's body, while they are in his own body. The individuals are shown to retain their own respective voices in their new bodies, making it harder for a person to impersonate the person they swapped with. In preparation for this technique, Ginyu usually begins by injuring himself in order to give a damaged body to his opponent.
This technique appears to require the spoken component in order to work as shown he became trapped in a Namekian Frog. In the anime, he does not need to use actually speak through vocal cords as Bulma's Universal Translator allowed him to change bodies with her. Later in Dragon Ball Super, it was shown that this technique can alternatively be activated by an opponent by writing "Change" in the ground in the alien language and tricking his opponent into saying it, as Ginyu did on Tagoma.
While the Body Change gives Ginyu an advantage over powerful opponents by effectively swapping power levels from their new bodies, this is shown to have one drawback: any host changing bodies must take time to get used to their new body before they can use its full power. This is already problematic enough if the body in question is vastly different from his own, but in situations where the key to accessing the body's maximum power is not anything he knows, or even anything strictly working within the body itself, it can become crippling to his output in relation to what its usual host is capable of. This is made clear in the case of his swap with Goku, result in Ginyu bearing a relatively dim power level of 23,000.
Ginyu's special ability originated during his childhood: when Ginyu first learned of his Body Change ability, he swapped bodies with the richest kid in his class. Due to this special ability, only a few people have seen Ginyu's true form and Salza, the leader of Cooler's Armored Squadron, is among them.
Ginyu is first seen using this attack against Goku after seeing Goku's great increase in his power level through the Kaio-ken technique. He and Jeice then flew off to find the Namekian Dragon Balls, with an injured Goku trapped in Ginyu's body slowly following behind. Once arriving back at the base, Ginyu is surprised to find the Dragon Balls dug up by Krillin and Gohan, choosing to feign being Goku, Ginyu attempts to get Krillin to tell him how to use the Dragon Balls, once it becomes clear that the earthlings do not know how to use the Namekian Dragon Balls, Ginyu drops the charade and attacks them.
Goku soon arrives, explaining to his son and best friend the situation. Goku then tricks Ginyu into attempting to power-up more, ultimately to instead greatly weaken himself from his lack of familiarity to Goku's different body structure. As Ginyu begins adjusting to Goku's body and regains control of the battle, Vegeta kills Jeice and proceeds to attack Ginyu, by quickly pummeling him and knocking him down into the ground. As Vegeta charges towards Ginyu, the captain attempts to use his Body Change technique against Vegeta. However, before the beam could hit Vegeta, Goku jumps in the way and got his body back while Ginyu got his.
Ginyu soon used his Body Change in a final attempt to switch bodies with Vegeta again. However, before the beam could hit Vegeta, Goku threw a Namekian frog in front of the Body Change beam, trapping Ginyu's mind in the frog's body and vice-versa, to which the frog hopped away in Ginyu's body. Vegeta chose to spare Ginyu, figuring being trapped in the body of a frog was punishment enough).
In the filler, the frog-bodied Ginyu is unable to switch to a different body as the frog is incapable of speech. However he encounters an abandoned Bulma who, lonely and wishing for someone to talk to, builds a device that would allow her to understand him, unaware of who he truly is. With the aid of the device Ginyu takes control of Bulma's body while trapping her in the frog's. Using Bulma's air bike, Ginyu journeys to the battlefield where Frieza is fighting Goku. Using Bulma's body, Ginyu tricks Gohan, Krillin, and Piccolo into thinking he is Bulma. However, he is unable to keep up the ruse for very long as he is prone to rooting for Frieza out loud, and frog-bodied Bulma tries to warn Gohan. Eventually, Gohan realizes Ginyu is in Bulma's body and Ginyu is forced to defend himself. Knowing Bulma's body is too weak, Ginyu tries to steal Piccolo's body, but Gohan quickly throws the frog-bodied Bulma between the two, resulting in Bulma regaining her body and Ginyu returning to the frog's body.
In the Golden Frieza Saga of Dragon Ball Super, Frog Ginyu writes "Change" in the dirt, tricking one of Frieza's elite soldiers Tagoma into saying it. Ginyu then proceeds to use Body Change in order to switch bodies with the elite soldier Tagoma. Unlike with his previous use on Planet Namek of this technique, Ginyu was able to quickly adjust to Tagoma's body, able to focus the body's true capabilities and power-up to full power, well-beyond what Tagoma showed. Upon which, Ginyu revealed himself to Frieza and reasserted himself within Frieza's ranks. Presumably Ginyu was able to adjust more quickly to Tagoma's body as he was a member of Frieza's Army like Ginyu, meaning Tagoma likely possessed similar abilities and training as Ginyu, though Ginyu was more experienced allowing him to draw out greater power from Tagoma's body allowing him to take full advantage of the training that Tagoma's body had received from sparring with Frieza.
- Body Change Special - A team attack variation from Supersonic Warriors 2 where Ginyu uses his Body Change on Goku while he is busy charging a Kamehameha. Ginyu then switches bodies with Goku and after adding his power to Goku's Kamehameha he fires it at the opponent. It is used by Ginyu (and Goku albeit unwillingly) to defeat Broly (though Broly manages to survive the blast).
- Ginyu Force Paralysis Body Change - A team attack used by Dark Ginyu and his Ginyu Force teammate Guldo on Goku in Dragon Ball Xenoverse. After his switch with the Future Warrior is undone and his second attempt to steal Goku's body foiled, an injured Ginyu orders Guldo (who survived due to Dark Ginyu order him to take the Dragon Balls back to Frieza's spaceship instead) to use his Paralysis on Goku so Dark Ginyu can finally steal Goku's body (ironically restoring that part of the original timeline in the process). Ginyu finishes the technique by using Body Change on the paralyzed victim. Appears only once in a story cutscene.
- Z-Assist Body Change - A variation of the Body Change used by the Future Warrior in Dragon Ball Xenoverse when performing the technique while Captain Ginyu is their current Master. The Z-Assist causes Ginyu's soul (which appears as an astral projection of Ginyu performing the technique) to go into the Future Warrior's body while they're performing it increasing the power of the Warrior's Body Change.
- Full-Nelson Body Change - A team attack used by Ginyu and Turles on Goku in Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2. After his switch with Future Trunks is undone, Turles appears behind Goku and places him in a Full-Nelson so Ginyu can steal Goku's body, rendering Goku helpless inside Ginyu's body. Though Ginyu was unaware of who Turles was he thanks him and uses his Body Change on Goku (Ginyu later tries to thank Turles by making him a member of the Ginyu Force but Turles politely declines). Appears only once in a story cutscene.
- Body Change Block - A technique used to counter and/or reverse a Body Change. This technique involves the user either shielding the intended target (like when Goku shielded Vegeta) or interrupting the body change with another being (such as a Namekian Frog), causing the body change to either backfire or undoing the body change (allowing someone to regain their stolen body). This technique technically counts as a variation as it requires the Body Change user to use the technique in order to counter or block it. Was named in Dragon Ball Fusions.
Appearances in games
The Body Change appears in Dragon Ball Z II: Gekishin Freeza, Legend of the Super Saiyan, Dragon Ball Z: The Legend, and Dragon Ball Z: Supersonic Warriors. If Ginyu uses this technique in Legend of the Super Saiyan, Goku can be stuck in Ginyu's body for the rest of the game. It can be countered with a Namekian Frog card. If the player chooses to stay in Ginyu's body, Goku is able to use the Body Change in all enemies, making the bosses much easier.
The Body Change is Ginyu's ultimate technique in the Butōden series, the Budokai and Budokai Tenkaichi series. The Budokai series, Budokai Tenkaichi, Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit, Dragon Ball Z: Tenkaichi Tag Team, and Dragon Ball Kai: Ultimate Butōden are the only fighting games where Captain Ginyu's Body Change is a real body change with the opponent (in Burst Limit, the body keeps its original voice). In Ultimate Butōden, Ginyu can also change back to his body (which can be very useful for defeating an opponent by allowing the opponent to hurt Ginyu so then Ginyu could return to his body).
In the Butōden series, when Ginyu uses the Body Change, no energy attacks of any kind are possible, and the effect drains the ki bar slowly and Ginyu will swap back when the bar is empty (the ki can be charged up to keep the exchange going longer). In Budokai Tenkaichi 2, when Ginyu uses the Body Change, instead of switching bodies with his opponent he picks a random character and he cannot use their transformations, Blast 1, 2 or Ultimate Blast. In Budokai Tenkaichi 3, he switches bodies with a random character (either Goku (Mid), Piccolo, Gohan, Krillin, Vegeta, Jeice, or Nail), however as that character, he will be unable to use any of their transformations, Blast 1, Blast 2, or Ultimate Blast techniques (nor will he be able to return to his own body). In the Raging Blast series, Ginyu's Body Change has been reduced to simply changing with Goku and having all but his Ultimate Attack available. In Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Tenkaichi, Ginyu in Goku's body is counted as a transformation for Ginyu, making him a separate character from his regular form. The Body Change technique can also be used by Ginyu in Dragon Ball: Zenkai Battle Royale.
In Dragon Ball Xenoverse, the Body Change technique makes a successful return and is portrayed for the first time since Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi as a technique that swaps the user with their target. Also, for the first time, it is portrayed as a technique that can be learned; the Future Warrior can learn the technique if they select Ginyu as their Master and successfully completes his training. If Body Change is used while Ginyu is the Warrior's current master the technique will receive a Z-Assist. The Body Change switches health, bodies, and, as in the anime series, voices as well. When the Body Change is used by one character in a match, it cannot be used again by any individual, even if they switch with another Body Change user. It is also possible to play as Goku in Ginyu's body as an alternate costume skin for Goku and Ginyu in Goku's body as an alternate costume skin for Ginyu. There is even an Z-Soul called "Your Body is Mine" that activates when the Body Change is used by the user.
In Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, the Body Change returns as Captain Ginyu's Ultimate Skill which the Future Warrior (Xenoverse 2) can learn by completing School Quest: "Lesson 3" of Ginyu's Training. Due to another change in history, Captain Ginyu uses the Body Change on Vegeta and poses with Jeice to the bewilderment of Krillin and Gohan. Unaware of the Body Change, Elder Kai who was examining the Scroll of Eternity that showed the change wondered what Vegeta was up to only for Future Trunks to reveal that Ginyu had switched bodies with his father. The Future Warrior from Age 852 is sent back to fix the change and confronts the rest of the Ginyu Force with Krillin and Gohan while Future Trunks follows Ginyu in order to track down Towa and Mira. However it turns out to be a trap and Ginyu catches Trunks off-guard allowing him to steal Trunks' powerful body. In Trunks' body, Ginyu appears just in time to save Jeice, performing his fighting pose revealing his theft of Trunks' body to the Warrior. Soon Trunks arrives in Ginyu's body and convinces Goku to let him assist in fighting Jeice and Ginyu, though tells him to spare Ginyu's life as he needs him to undo the change (due to the changes in history Goku does not know of Ginyu). Eventually Ginyu is forced to switch bodies and Trunks uses the opportunity to shield Goku and return to his original body. Afterwards Goku is grabbed from behind by Turles allowing Ginyu to steal Goku's body and in order to be able to give himself a better chance of killing Goku when he is in Ginyu's body. However Ginyu is defeated once more and tries to swap bodies with the Future Warrior, but Goku jumps in the way, allowing him to return to his original body. Ginyu tries to steal the Warrior's body a second time but Goku stops him by throwing a Namekian Frog, causing Ginyu to swap bodies with it like in the original history. Ginyu in Vegeta and Future Trunks' bodies also appear as alternate skins for Ginyu. Additionally, the Body Change attack pose appears as Emotes 45: "Change" which the Future Warrior can learn from Majin Time Patroller Salma in Mushroom Desert after defeating Frieza and Cooler in the main story. The Warrior must perform Emote 8: "What the?!" in front of Salma in order to unlock it.
In Dragon Ball Fusions, the character description for Shorny (a female member of Ginyu's race) mentions that her entire strategy is based around the Body Change. Body Change itself appears as a Special Move. Additionally certain characters (such as Gotenks and several other fusions like Gulce & Recurter) have a Skill (passive abilities that grant various bonuses or effects) called Body Change Block which nullifies the Body Change special move.
- In the FUNimation dub of the Captain Ginyu Saga, the first time Ginyu uses the technique, instead of "Change now!" Ginyu shouts "You're mine!" This error was corrected in Kai.
- In Dragon Ball Xenoverse, in a what-if Parallel Quest scenario Ginyu steals Goku's body and transforms into a Super Saiyan, indicating that Ginyu has access to any transformations his current body possesses. Though it should be noted that Ginyu is unable to use Power Ups like the Kaio-ken if he himself does not know them, as shown by his inability to access Goku's power level of 180,000 which was achieve through the Kaio-ken. It should also be noted that games often allow Ginyu (and other body change users) the ability to use a swapped characters moves for gameplay purposes (such as Ginyu using the Kamehameha while in Goku's body in Xenoverse).
- Ginyu's bodyswap with Bulma in the anime classifies as a genderswap bodyswap, a male/female bodyswap. This is one of the few instances of genderswap or gender bending in the Dragon Ball series.
- In video games, he can use any transformations and techniques possessed by the opponent's body, probably because, in terms of gameplay, it's a character swap and not a series-accurate Body Change.
- In Xenoverse, Ginyu briefly swaps bodies with the Future Warrior as part of the story. While in the Future Warrior's body, Ginyu will have access to any of the custom skills the player has equipped and wear whatever outfit or accessory the Future Warrior is wearing. While in Ginyu's body Warrior's chosen voice will still be present, though the Warrior will have Ginyu's skills instead of their custom skills.
- If the Future Warrior is Saiyan, after the switch, Ginyu will tell Jeice that even though both the Future Warrior and Goku are Saiyans the difference in potential power between them is not the same and believes Goku's potential power to be greater thus explaining his desire to obtain Goku's body.
- If the Future Warrior is Namekian, Ginyu will be insulted to look like the trash that lives on Namek, indicating his disdain for Namekians, which is ironic considering he tried to steal Piccolo's body in the anime. However, of the three warriors watching the battle, Piccolo was the strongest and at the time Ginyu was in desperate need of a strong body he could fight in as Bulma's was too weak.
- If the Future Warrior is Human, Ginyu will find the Warrior's human body is ugly, stating it has not one speck of beauty on it.
- If the Future Warrior is Majin, he will be put off by the Warrior's flabby body (though he is likely referring to the elastic nature of a Majin's body structure) as it would making his Fighting Poses not look good.
- If the Future Warrior is Frieza's race, Ginyu thinks Lord Frieza would take copying his looks as an insult.
- Zamasu was able to produce a similar effect to this technique by making a wish to Super Shenron to swap bodies with Goku. Unlike Ginyu's Body Change, however, Zamasu in Goku's body still had Goku's voice, whereas Ginyu kept his own voice while he was in Goku's body.
- It is currently unknown what would happen if Captain Ginyu (or anyone else capable of performing the technique) were to switch bodies with a Fusion and the fusion was to defuse while he was still in control of the Fusion's body. This may explain why certain fusions such as Gotenks have the skill Body Change Block in Dragon Ball Fusions.
- ↑ Daizenshuu 7, 1996
- ↑ Dragon Ball Z Collectible Card Game, 2000
- ↑ Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 Emotes 45: "Change"
- ↑ Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu
- ↑ Dragon Ball Xenoverse, 2015
- ↑ Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, 2016
- ↑ Dragon Ball Fusions, 2016
- ↑ Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu strategy guide, 1992
- ↑ Weekly Shōnen Jump no. 25, 1991
- ↑ Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3, 2007