With Shang-Chi reaching a cosmically powerful new form in the comics, here’s how the Kung Fu master could take on Goku at his best.
With the Dragon ball franchise taking its iconic characters to new levels of power as Super Saiyan Gods and beyond in the anime / manga series Dragon ball super, Goku and the Z Fighters are stronger than ever. Meanwhile, in the Marvel Universe, Shang-Chi has been seen gaining a position of power to lead his father’s international union, the Five Weapons Society, putting him at odds with the rest of the superhero community. .
As Shang-Chi settles into these new responsibilities and moves to defend his reunited family at all costs, he has received a surprising cosmic upgrade. This opens the question, which martial arts master would win in a showdown between Goku and Shang-Chi in their most powerful forms?
Dragon ball super started with Goku and his friends learning about Super Saiyan God transformations, combining their natural Super Saiyan abilities with awakened divine energies by joining their power and strengthened through training under Angelic Whis guidance. This led to Goku and Vegeta developing the even more powerful Super Saiyan Blue transformation. Goku letting go and letting the raw divine energy flow through him led him to master the Ultra Instinct transformation, making combat second nature to him. In this form, Goku can instinctively anticipate incoming attacks while enjoying vastly increased strength and speed to easily take down his opponents, including the magical supervillain Moro.
Shang-Chi’s leadership of the Five Weapons Society put him on a collision course with the Avengers, with problems coming to a head when Earth’s Mightiest Heroes clashed with the Kung Fu master over the fate of the cosmic cube. This misunderstanding would lead to an overpowered showdown as the Avengers attack the Five Arms compound in Japan. Grabbing what he initially believed to be a mythical blade, Shang-Chi instead appeared to channel the powers of an East Asian thunder god, easily able to stand up to Thor and melt the legendary hammer. Mjolnir in the hands of the Asgardian with a simple command. Shang-Chi realized that the Japanese sword was in fact the Cosmic Cube in disguise, restoring reality and retreating… for now.
Even without the Cosmic Cube, Shang-Chi is the most trained martial artist in the Marvel Universe and has honed his instincts and natural abilities into superhuman abilities, able to take on someone so formidable on the ring as Captain America. And the Cosmic Cube is far from the only Cosmic Force Shang-Chi has been empowered by, one binding to the Phoenix Force as the flaming entity searched for a new human host. Powers like these mean Shang-Chi can rewrite the rules of space and time in place with a single thought. The only realistic way for Goku to stand a chance against an opponent of this magnitude is if he gets the drop on Shang-Chi with something like his Instant Transmission technique, but Shang’s heightened instincts and reflexes. -Chi can make this a moot point.
In a direct fight against Shang-Chi in his natural state against Goku, the Super Saiyan would potentially outshine the Kung Fu Master without even harnessing his Super Saiyan God potential. However, if Shang-Chi were enhanced by something like a Cosmic Cube or the Phoenix Force, the odds would be more than leveled, with Shang-Chi’s own Cosmic Matterbending himself giving him the edge. Even the Ultra Instinct transformation has its limits and against a Cosmic Kung Fu Master, Goku will have to find new levels of power to stand a chance.
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