The fusion of Goten and Trunks – Gotenks – was one of Dragon Ball Z’s strongest fighters, but he’s no longer the powerful force that he once was.
In Dragon Ball Super, the power level of Gotenks was greatly disappointing in comparison to how strong he was in Dragon Ball Z. The fusion of Goten and Trunks created one of the anime’s most powerful fighters in the form of Gotenks.
During the Buu Saga, it was believed that Gotenks was the Z-Warriors’ best hope of saving the world. He indeed proved to be more than a challenging adversary for Super Buu, particularly when he copied Goku and reached the level of Super Saiyan 3. Gotenks was even able to overpower Buu, but unfortunately the drawbacks of the Super Saiyan 3 form came back to haunt him, and it was this that resulted in his defeat. That being said, Gotenks remains one of Dragon Ball Z’s most powerful characters. Though he was below Super Saiyan 3 Goku and Ultimate Gohan, he was able to outshine everyone else in the anime.
If what Goten and Trunks accomplished in Dragon Ball Z set high expectations for them in Dragon Ball Super, both characters failed to meet them. Though they had a good amount of screen time, they didn’t play much of a role in the main story, as their fusion wasn’t strong enough to be of much of help to Goku and Vegeta. In his first fight in Dragon Ball Super, Gotenks suffered an embarrassing loss to Beerus, but this is actually excusable, considering what Beerus did to Super Saiyan 3 Goku.
However, the same can’t be said for his battle with the Vegeta clone. At full power, Gotenks gave it everything he had when he was forced to face the clone, who matched the power of Trunks’ father in his base form. Even at Super Saiyan 3, Gotenks was no match for him. Luckily, Goku arrived and took over. Without transforming, Goku pushed the clone to his limit until both characters went Super Saiyan Blue. This fight is quite telling, because it proves that Super Saiyan 3 Gotenks is weaker than both Goku and Vegeta in their base forms.
This is a sign of how far Goku and Vegeta have come since training with Whis – and that Gotenks has been left behind by the anime. Since Super Saiyan 3 was the most powerful transformation in Dragon Ball Z, it would make sense for a character capable of achieving that kind of power to be near the top in terms of how he compares to the other Z-Warriors, but this is clearly not the case anymore. Though Gotenks is still one of only two characters who have gone Super Saiyan 3 in canon, he’s several levels below Goku, Vegeta, Android 17, Gohan, and Future Trunks. He may even be weaker than Piccolo at this point. If Goten and Trunks plan on providing help in the future, the two will have to train more intensely in the next anime. They showed great potential by going Super Saiyan earlier than all other characters, but haven’t progressed much at all since Dragon Ball Z ended.
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Dragon Ball Super Complete Series