Dr agon b a L l z t r a ding ca rd ga me

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Welcome to the world of Dragon Ball Z! In the Dragon Ball Z 

card game, you’ll construct your own customized deck 

and battle it out with an opponent to determine the fate 

of the galaxy.

There are seven different card types to consider when 

building a deck. Main Personality cards and Mastery cards 

will begin the game in play. From there, your Life Deck 

will consist of 60 different Physical Combat cards, Energy 

Combat cards, Event cards, Setup cards, Drill cards, Ally 

cards, and Dragon Balls. With these, you’ll inflict damage on 

your opponent, collect Dragon Balls, and level up your Main 

Personality. When your opponent’s deck runs out of cards, 

you win the game! You can also win by collecting all seven 

Dragon Balls, or reaching 5 Anger on your highest Main 

Personality stage.


Main Personality - your Main Personality (“MP”) represents 

your character on the battlefield. A Main Personality set 

comprises four Levels, each one with its own Power Up 

Rating (“PUR”) and Power. Main Personalities also have 11 

Power Stages. You’ll keep track of your current Power Stage 

by moving up and down your Power Levels with a Scouter or 

using the back of a card. You can reach higher Levels of your 

Main Personality by raising your Anger, which you’ll learn 

about soon.


Main Personality cards that are blue are Heroes, while red 

denotes a Villain.

Mastery - your Mastery card represents your fighting style. 

There are six Style types in the game: Black, Blue, Orange, 

Red, Namekian and Saiyan.

Black: The manipulation style. Black uses disruptive effects to 

control your opponent’s options, as well as deal damage from 

a variety of attack types.

Blue: The reversal style. Blue cards will often prevent damage 

or use your opponent’s own cards against them.

Orange: The controlling style. Orange seeks to establish 

dominance by accumulating cards in play while unleashing 

powerful energy attacks.

Red: The aggressive style. Red cards emphasize advancing 

your Main Personality and often reward you for being on higher 


Namekian: The regenerative style. Namekian decks pay special 

attention to cards that have been discarded from the deck. This 

style can only be used by Nameks or those trained by Nameks 

(Piccolo, Gohan, Nail, Dende, etc).

Saiyan: The offensive style. Saiyan cards are focused on all-

out attacking and brute force. This style can only be used by 

Saiyans (Goku, Gohan, Vegeta, Nappa, Raditz, Trunks, etc).







Freestyle: Freestyle cards are any cards that don’t have Black, Blue, 

Orange, Red, Namekian, or Saiyan as the first word in the title.

Your Main Personality and Mastery begin the game in play and 

shape the entire theme of your deck. Mixing and matching 

different Main Personalities with different Masteries can yield 

powerful results. Choose wisely! From there, your deck will be 

comprised of the following types of cards.

Physical Combat cards are strikes, holds, 

and other types of attacks and blocks that 

will be used to battle with your opponent.

Energy Combat cards are also used for 

attacking and blocking. Beams, blasts and 

other ranged moves are represented on 

these cards.

Event cards create powerful effects that 

can swing the entire game in your favor.

The following types of cards can be put into play only on your 

turn during the Planning Step, which will be explained in a bit.

Drills represent knowledge or training, 

and are constantly active once they 

are on the table. Whenever your Main 

Personality advances or lowers a level, all 

of your Drills are discarded. Only one of 

each Styled Drill may be in play at a time, 

but there is no limit on Freestyle Drills.

Setups are cards that you’ll put into play 

and save for later. You won’t get to use 

any effects of a Setup until it is activated.

Ally cards represent other characters 

who can come to your aid. They have a 

PUR, Alignment, Trait, Power Stages, and 

a Power just like your Main Personality. 

Allies have special rules for what they can 

do during Combat.

Dragon Balls are a set of seven mystical 

objects that will grant the wish of anyone 

who can collect them all. When you place 

a Dragon Ball into play, you must

immediately use its effects. Whenever 

you discard or destroy a Dragon Ball

place it on the bottom of your deck.


Anger is the mechanism you’ll use to level up. You begin 

the game with zero Anger, and you can keep track of it with 

things like dice or tokens. Card effects will let you gain Anger 

throughout the game, but your opponent may play things that 

lower your Anger as well. Whenever your Anger reaches five, 

advance your Main Personality to the next Level at ten Power 

Stages above zero. Your Anger is then set back to zero, all of

your Drills are discarded, and you may use the new Power of 

your Main Personality this turn.

Note: Your Anger cannot go below zero, and you do not 

lose a Level as a result of your Anger being lowered. If an 

effect grants more Anger than necessary to level up, it does 

not carry over to the next Level. If your Main Personality is 

advanced or lowered to any Level by an effect, your Anger 

remains the same. If you are lowered a Level, set your Main 

Personality to five Power Stages above zero. 


Your deck must contain a Main Personality set (Levels 1-4, all 

of the same character), a Mastery, and exactly 60 other cards. 

You may include only one copy of any given Dragon Ball or Ally. 

You can play up to three copies of any other card, unless 

noted otherwise on the card itself. All of your Styled cards 

must match the Style of your Mastery. You may also include 

any Freestyle cards. Some Freestyle cards are Named, 

meaning they have a character’s name in the title. Any Named 

cards you include must match the name of your Main 

Personality. Any cards tied to an Alignment must match the 

Alignment of your Main Personality (this includes Allies). 

When you first start out, use a Starter Deck in order to get a 

grasp of how things work. From there, add cards from Booster 

Packs in order to design your own personalized creation!


Throughout the game, you’ll have cards in your hand and life 

deck, cards in play on the table, and cards that have been 

discarded or removed from the game.

Life Deck - your 60-card Life Deck represents your various skills 

and techniques, as well as how much vitality you have left. 

You’ll draw cards from it to perform attacks, and take damage 

by discarding cards from it to the Discard Pile.

Hand - your hand will be filled with cards that you have drawn 

during the course of gameplay. During Combat, you’ll play 

cards from your hand, use their effects, and then discard them.

In Play - some cards stay in play and remain on the table. Your 

Main Personality and Mastery will always be in play on the 

table, while other cards like Setups or Allies will come and go.

Discard Pile - cards that are discarded after being played or 

used are placed face up in the Discard Pile. Sometimes your 

opponent will Destroy cards that you have in play, which 

sends them to the Discard Pile. When you take damage, you’ll 

send cards from the top of your Life Deck to the Discard Pile. 

Cards in the Discard Pile must stay in order. Both players may 

inspect either Discard Pile at any time. 

Banished Zone - When you Banish a card, it is removed from 

the game by placing it face up in the Banished Zone. 

You might play cards that Banish themselves after use, or your 

opponent may use various effects that Banish your cards in 

play. If a Dragon Ball is discarded or destroyed and it matches 

a Dragon Ball already in play, it is Banished. Cards in the 

Banished Zone must stay in order. Both players may inspect 

either Banished Zone at any time.


Once you and an opponent both have a deck, you’re ready to 

play! Begin the game with your Mastery in play, as well as 

your Main Personality set on Level 1 at five Power Stages 

above zero. After shuffling your deck and deciding who goes 

first, the initial turn begins. Each turn consists of the 

following steps:

1. Draw Step

At the beginning of your turn, draw three cards from the top of 

your Life Deck.

2. Planning Step

At this time, you may play any Allies, Setups, Drills, or Dragon 

Balls by placing them face up on your side of the table. Then, 

your Main Personality and any Allies gain power stages equal 

to the amount listed for their Power Up Rating.

Note: Allies come into play at three Power Stages above zero. 

Drills generally have 

 effects that are always active, but 

remember that Setups need to be activated during combat in 

order to use their abilities. Also recall that any time you play a 

Dragon Ball, you must immediately use all of its effects. You 

cannot play a Dragon Ball if it matches one that is already on 

the table. 

3. Combat Step (Optional)

You may now decide to declare combat against your opponent. 

You’ll find out the details of the Combat Step a bit later.

4. Discard Step

Both players have a maximum hand size of one card at the end 

of each turn. You and your opponent discard cards from your 

hand until you each have one or zero held cards.

5. Rejuvenation Step

If you did not declare combat this turn, you may Rejuvenate 

the top card of your discard pile. Whenever a card or effect 

tells you to Rejuvenate a card, it is placed face down on the 

bottom of your Life Deck.

After you have finished these steps, your turn is over. Your 

opponent then takes the next turn and moves through the 

same steps. Continue alternating turns until the game ends. 

There are three ways to win the game:

Survival Victory - if your opponent’s Life Deck has no cards left 

in it, you win the game. 

Most Powerful Personality Victory (“MPPV”) - if you reach five 

Anger while your Main Personality is on Level 4, you win  

the game. 

Dragon Ball Victory - if you control a set of all seven Dragon 

Balls, you win the game.


The Combat Step is the heart of the game, and most of the 

excitement during a match occurs here. 

When you declare combat, use any “when entering combat” 

effects you have (such as from your Mastery, Main Personality, 

Power, Drills, etc). Next, your opponent uses any “when 

entering combat” effects and then draws three cards. 

The Combat Step involves alternating Actions between 

players. You make an Action such as playing an attack or using 

an effect, which your opponent may defend. Your opponent 

then makes an Action, which you may defend. Then you make 

the next Action, and so on, until both players pass.

The player who declared combat makes the first Action. Here 

are the types of Actions you can make:


» Playing an   card. Attacks will usually be Physical 

Combat or Energy Combat cards that you play from your 

hand, or the Power of your Main Personality. Whenever 

you play an attack, your opponent may attempt to defend 

with a   card that matches the attack type (physical/

energy) of the   card.


» Using a Power. The Powers of Main Personalities, Allies, 

and Masteries may only be used once per turn. To use the 

Power of an Event, play it from your hand and then discard 

it. To use the Power of a Setup in play, activate it and then 

discard it.


» Passing. If you don’t want to play or use anything, you 

may pass. You must pass if you have no other remaining 

Actions to make. When both players pass consecutively, 

the Combat Step ends.


Cards have different icons that tell you when they can be used.


- a card that performs an attack


- a defensive card that can be used against attacks


- a continuous effect that is constantly active while the  


card is in play


- an effect that may be used immediately, whenever    




Whenever you play an  , your opponent may defend it 

with use of one   card by playing it from his hand or using 

something in play (such as a Power or Setup). Cards used 

defensively do things like reduce the damage of an attack, 

or stop all damage completely. When a card Stops an attack, 

the attack does not hit and deals no damage. The effects of 

 and   cards always take place immediately when they 

are played. Some cards have effects which work only after an 

unstopped attack deals damage.

There are two types of attacks - Energy Attacks and Physical 

Attacks. Energy Attacks generally deal damage directly to 

the opponent’s Life Deck by discarding cards from it, while 

Physical Attacks usually lower your opponent’s Power Stages.

Most Energy Attacks cost Power Stages to perform. To pay 

for an Energy Attack, lower your Main Personality the required 

number of Power Stages. If you do not have enough stages 

to pay for an attack, you are unable to play it. Many Energy 

Attacks deal damage in the form of Life Cards. To take Life 

Cards of damage, discard cards one at a time from the top of 

your Life Deck to your Discard Pile.

Physical Attacks usually have no cost to perform and do 

damage based on your Power Level. To calculate the damage 

of a Physical Attack, reference the Attack Table (“AT”).

Find your Power Level in one of the A-F Attacker rows and 

compare it to the Power Level of your opponent’s Main 

Personality in the A-F Defender columns. For example, Vegeta 

performs a Physical Attack against Goku. Vegeta’s current 

Power Level is 90,000, placing him in the C bracket. Goku’s 

Power Level of 7,000 puts him in the B bracket, so the attack 

does two Power Stages of damage. Goku’s Scouter would be 

moved down two Power Stages.

Whenever you take Power Stages of damage at a Power 

Level of zero, the remaining stages are taken as Life Cards of 

damage from the top of your Life Deck. For example, Goku 

deals five Power Stages of damage to Vegeta. Vegeta is at 

two Power Stages above zero. He lowers his Scouter to zero, 

and then takes three Life Cards of damage by discarding the 

top three cards of his Life Deck.


Attacks may have some or all of their damage prevented or 

reduced. An attack can be stopped, which causes it to do no 

damage. Attacks that are not stopped deal damage and perform 

any “Hit” effects. If your attack dealt enough damage, you may 

then use a critical damage effect.


Whenever your opponent discards five or more Life Cards of 

damage from an unstopped attack, you may choose to do one 

of the following:


» Capture a Dragon Ball. Gain control of a Dragon Ball your 

opponent has in play by turning it sideways and moving it to 

your side of the table. When you Capture a Dragon Ball, you 

may choose to immediately use its effects.


» Discard one of your opponent’s Allies in play.


» Lower your opponent’s Anger by one.


There are two things you should watch for when discarding 

cards for damage. Since Dragon Balls are placed at the bottom 

of your Life Deck whenever discarded, they do not count 

toward damage and require a replacement discard. If you 

are taking damage and can only discard Dragon Balls, your 

opponent wins by Survival Victory.

Some cards have Endurance. Whenever you discard a card with 

Endurance while taking damage, you may Banish it in order to 

prevent some or all of the remaining damage. For example, you 

are hit by an Energy Attack dealing six Life Cards of damage. 

You discard the first card from the top of your Life Deck to 

the discard pile, then the second, then the third - which has 

Endurance 2. You choose to Banish that card, preventing two 

cards of the remaining damage from this attack. You then finish 

taking damage for the attack by discarding one more card.










































































Allies may have damage redirected to them. Whenever your 

Main Personality would lose Power Stages due to damage 

from an attack, you may have an Ally lose those stages instead.

Allies can also perform Actions whenever your Main 

Personality is no more than one Power Stage above zero. 

When an Ally performs an Action, it acts just like your 

Main Personality. This means you can do things like use 

the Power of an Ally, use the Power Level of an Ally when 

referencing the Attack Table, pay the costs of an Energy 

Attack by lowering the stages of an Ally, and so on. Constant  


) powers on Allies are in effect even when your Main 

Personality is more than one Power Stage above zero.

Now you know everything you need to play your first match 

of the Dragon Ball Z card game. However, this is just your first 

step on the path to becoming a true master! Stick to using a 

Starter Deck at first, and then expand on your strategies by 

adding new cards from Booster Packs. As you hone your skills 

and perfect your deck, you’ll discover countless interactions 

between all the different cards available to you. It’s a game of 

limitless possibilities! Crafting your deck, collecting new cards, 

playing new opponents with different strategies, discovering 

new combos...all this and more awaits you in the world of the 

DBZ card game.


Actions - things you do during combat such as using a Power, 

activating a Setup, or performing an attack

Alignment - blue Main Personalities and Allies are Heroes, red 

Main Personalities and Allies are Villains

Anger - keep track of your Anger as it is raised and lowered, 

and when you reach five Anger you advance a Level and reset 

your Anger to zero

Banish - when a card is Banished, it is removed from the game 

by placing it in the Banished Zone

Capture - gain control of a Dragon Ball your opponent has in 

play and optionally use its effects

Destroy - discards a card in play

Endurance - cards with Endurance can prevent damage when 

being discarded from an attack

Freestyle - a card without one of the Styles as the first word in 

its title (Black, Blue, Orange, Red, Namekian, or Saiyan)

Hit - effects that take place after dealing damage from an 

unstopped attack

Named Cards - cards that have a character’s name in the title, 

must match the name of your Main Personality to use them

Pass - you may pass instead of making an Action, and must 

pass if you have no Actions to make

Power - effects that can be used during Combat. Powers of 

Main Personalities, Masteries and Allies can only be used 

once per turn regardless of things such as advancing/lowering 

a Level or leaving/reentering player.

Power Level - the number rating of your current Power Stage

Power Stages - 10 different stages above zero that determine 

your damage for Physical Attacks via the Attack Table, gain and 

lose stages by moving your Scouter up and down

Power Up Rating (PUR) - the amount of stages your Main 

Personality or Ally gains during the Planning Step

Rejuvenate - place a card from your discard pile at the bottom 

of your Life Deck.

Scouter - a card for tracking your current Power Level and how 

many Power Stages above zero you are

Stopping attacks - effects that “stop” attacks keep them from 

hitting and block all damage from it

Styled - styled cards have Black, Blue, Orange, Red, Namekian, 

or Saiyan in the title

Trait - Main Personalities and Allies may have different Traits 

(such as Hero or Villain) that are required or referenced for 

various card effects  



Lead Game Developer: Aik Tongtharadol


Game Developers and Playtesters: Joey DiCarlo, 

Dominick DiCarlo, David Fashbinder, Nick Glaser, 

Joel Glasser, Sean Poestkoke, Garrett Wilkinson, 

George Wilkinson, Richie Williams


Graphic Design: Brandon Lesley, Lupe Partida


Rulebook Design: Philip Elliot


Rulebook Copy: Richie Williams


Dragon Ball Z


 Original Game Design and Developers: 

James M. Ward, David Eckhard, Israel Quiroz


For more information about the game, upcoming events and 

tournaments, and future products, check out:



For more information about the show check out:



Thanks to all the Dragon Ball Z fans and players 

for making this game possible!


Cards have different icons that tell you when they can be used.

- a defensive card that can be used against attacks

- a card that performs an attack

- an effect that may be used immediately, whenever appropriate  

- a continuous effect that is constantly active while the card is in play 

© 2014 Panini America, Inc.  5325 FAA Blvd., Suite 100, Irving, TX 75061-3601 

Printed in the USA.

For Conformity Certificate visit www.paniniamerica.net 

©BIRD STUDIO/SHUEISHA, TOEI ANIMATION. License coordinated by FUNimation® 

Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Dragon Ball Z and all logos, character 

names and distinctive likenesses thereof are trademarks of SHUEISHA, INC.


1)  Draw Step – Draw three cards.

2)  Planning Step – Play any Allies, Setups, Drills or Dragon Balls  

  and then power up each of your personalities.

3)  Combat Step (optional) – Your opponent draws three cards

  and then you both alternate actions.

4)  Discard Step – Both players discard down to one card in hand.

5)  Rejuvenation Step – If you did not enter the Combat Step,  

  rejuvenate the top card of your discard pile.

  Your opponent now begins the next turn.









































































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