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Grand Elder Guru

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Directory: CharactersNamekian

"Oh, you mustn't be sad, my children. I have lived a full and blessed life. Don't be afraid. Death is simply another stage of our life."
— "Mighty Blast of Rage"

Guru (最長老, Saichōrō; lit. "Grand Elder") is the oldest and wisest remaining Namekian in existence at the time of his appearance. As the creator of the Namekian Dragon Balls, Guru's death would cause them to become inert, unless he passes down his authority to someone else.


Dragon Ball Z

Frieza Saga

Main articles: Namek Saga and Frieza Saga


The Grand Elder talking to Nail, Dende, and Krillin

Guru is one of the two known survivors of a cataclysmic climate shift on Namek several hundred years prior to the events in the series (the other ones being Kami and King Piccolo, who were once one being prior to Kami's separation with his inner evil). Guru is renowned for saving the Namekian race after the climate shift, by laying eggs and continuing his species. In his lifetime, he birthed 109 children, including his bodyguard Nail and the young Dende.

"Pure-hearted warriors always rise to a new level of strength when forced to defend themselves against the vile sort of darkness that you represent."
— "Frieza Approaches"

Morbidly obese in his old age, Guru is always seen sitting stationary on his throne-like chair during the Namek Saga. He dies before Frieza is defeated, of a combination of a broken heart and stress (both brought on from repeatedly sensing his children's deaths at the hands of Frieza's minions), but not before unlocking Krillin, Gohan and Dende's hidden powers (the latter of whom seemed to gain healing abilities as opposed to increased battle strength).

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Grand Elder Guru

It is revealed that Guru knows about the Super Saiyan legend when he asks Krillin if the Saiyan who attacked Earth (Vegeta) was a "Super Saiyan". Also, Guru regards Kami and Piccolo's original potential to be so great that only a Super Saiyan could have a chance at defeating him (after Piccolo's fusion with Nail and Kami, Krillin later states in the Imperfect Cell Saga that Kami and Piccolo's potential is even greater than that of a Super Saiyan).

Guru out of chair

Guru on Earth with his sons

His death prevents Vegeta from wishing for immortality, just before Frieza found Krillin, Vegeta, Gohan, and Dende wishing with the Dragon Balls. Soon thereafter, King Kai chooses to revive him and all the other victims of Frieza's army with the Earth's Dragon Balls so the Namekian dragon, Porunga, would be brought back. The wish revives Elder Guru because Frieza's murder of the Namekians caused Guru to die of grief. The third wish left is used to transport everyone on the planet (except Goku and Frieza) to Earth. Later on Earth, when his death due to old age is imminent, Guru passes on the Dragon Balls and his position as the Namekian Grand Elder to Moori. As Guru dies again of his old age, he goes with a smile on his face, saying it was a good day to die. Upon his death, his body fades away (implying that Guru was allowed to keep his body upon death).

Powers and abilities

Guru Telepatically Talking To King Kai

Grand Elder Guru telepathically talking to King Kai

Though Guru is not shown fighting in the series, he has shown a number of abilities. As a member of the Dragon Clan, his most famous ability is the power to create Dragon Balls, to which he gave powerful abilities. He has the ability to unlock someone's hidden potential by placing his hand on their head; he did this for Krillin, Gohan and Dende. Krillin asked Guru if he was not weakened after unlocking his potential, but Guru replied that it did not matter as he only acted as a catalyst, and that his life force is not affected in the slightest. Guru can also view someone's memories by placing his hand on their head, and can perform telepathy and sense ki.

In Dragon Ball Z: The Anime Adventure Game, Guru's power level is stated to be 2,000.

Guru can use the Namekian Fusion ability in the Dragon Ball Collectible Card Game to fuse with any of the other Namekians in the game.

Video game appearances


Guru in Super Saiya Densetsu

Voice actors


  • Guru's chair/throne design actually first appeared several years prior in the King Piccolo Saga, though King Piccolo's was slightly different with skull detailing, while Kami's was nearly identical to Guru's, as was the chair originally within the ship the Nameless Namek came to Earth in. The Nameless Namek and/or his father Katas may have known Guru due to this, though it is also possible other Namekian leaders used these chairs as well, in the time prior to the climate shift on Namek which nearly extinguished their species.
  • Though many characters in Dragon Ball media die twice within the course of the storyline (like Goku, Vegeta, Piccolo, Krillin, Yamcha, Tien Shinhan, Chiaotzu, Master Roshi, etc.), Guru is the only character to die twice in the same saga.
  • Although referred to as "Guru" in the English dub of the Dragon Ball Z anime, that name has been dropped in favor of a more literal translation of his name, "The Grand Elder," for the English dub of Dragon Ball Z Kai. This makes him the only character to have his name changed for the new show like this.
  • In the Hebrew dub, Guru is stated to be a female Namekian, probably because of him giving birth to nearly all the Namekians currently alive.
  • In the Adventure Mode of Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Butōden, due to Omega Shenron's Minus Energy warping time and space, Guru appears alive on Planet Namek. In order to learn more about the power of the Legendary Saiyan needed to seal the Minus Energy in the Ultimate Dragon Balls, Goku travels to Namek and meets with Guru. Guru reveals that he had heard that the Legendary Saiyan is a form beyond a Super Saiyan and explain that it is a special Saiyan temporarily created from an ordinary Saiyan and possess the power of a god. He also explains that several Saiyans are needed to create one. It is later revealed that the Legendary Saiyan is simply another name for the Super Saiyan God form.


See also

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