Character Description
Piccolo is a fictional character from Dragonball, Dragonball Z and Dragonball GT.
He is first introduced as of Piccolo Daimao, essentially making him a demon and the arch rival of the series protagonist Son Goku. Piccolo main object was to kill Goku and he comes from a race of aliens called Namekians. Though being mentioned and referred to as a male, since he is a Namekian, he is genderless. In the introduction of Dragon Ball Z, he teams up with his arch rival at the time Son Goku against the Saiyan, Raditz.
 Plot Involvement
Summary of Piccolo in the series
Piccolo Daimo (Demon King Piccolo) was known and feared around the world, but this was not Piccolo's original form. Many centuries ago a lone Namekian belonging to the Dragon Family, referenced only as "the son of Ksaat" arrived on Earth, and sometime later was in competition for the role of "Guardian of the Earth", or "God of Earth", depending on the dub/translation you watch.
On his first attempt, the son of Ksaat was told he was unfit to be the Guardian of Earth, due to the portion of evil in his heart. In his determination, his good and evil sides conflicted with each other, and he purged himself of all the evil within. This manifested itself by the Namekian's body becoming two - one good, one pure evil.
The good Namekian later became known as Kami (literally meaning "God") and took up the role of Guardian of Earth. The evil Namekian dubbed himself the Demon King Piccolo, and terrorised the Earth, and was eventually sealed in a magical prison by the old sensei of Goku's Master Roshi. He was later set free by Emperor Pilaf, and again tried to control the world, but was defeated by Goku. Upon his death he spat out an egg containing his genetically identical "son" known as Piccolo Jr in DragonBall, later known simply as Piccolo in DragonBall Z.
Kami and Piccolo hated each other bitterly for years, and while Jr was not the original Piccolo, he was still the counterpart to Kami, and if one were to be killed, the other would also die. When Piccolo kidnapped Goku's son, Gohan, to train him for the coming Saiyan threat of Nappa and Vegeta, Piccolo's first true friendship began to form, and the evil in his heart began slowly being chipped away by the love and compassion of Gohan and Goku.
Piccolo's evil was further diluted when he merged with another Namekian, Nail, in a bid to gain power before confronting Frieza on Planet Namek shortly after his return from the afterlife.
During the Cell Saga, Piccolo and Kami were able to set aside their differences for the greater good, and merged to become their original form once again. Dubbed by some to be a "Super-Namek" and jokingly referred to by Goku as "Kamiccolo!" the Namekian could not remember his original name, and wished to remain being known as Piccolo.
This new Piccolo had all the fighting power, keen instinct and viciousness of Piccolo, joined with the universal knowledge, kindness and wisdom of Kami, and has sacrificed himself for others on numerous occasions.
 Dragonball Z
It has been some years since Piccolo's fight with Goku at the Martial Arts Tournament. His training is interupted by a powerful and strange looking man. After the confrontation, Piccolo follows him to where Goku is and agrees to team up with him to defeat the stranger named Raditz. After all, Raditz is in the way of Piccolo's own plans to take over Earth. The resulting battle is tough, and Goku sacrifices his own life to ensure Raditz is caught in Piccolo's new technique, the Special Beam Cannon. Just as Raditz is dieing he teels them that two more even more powerful Saiyans will come to Earth in one year. Piccolo then sets about training for a solid year, taking Goku's young son, Gohan, with him as he showed promising strength.
Gohan survives Piccolo's training and Piccolo even develops a sort of bond with the child. Then the day arrives for the battle with the Saiyans. During the battle the larger Saiyan, Nappa, fires a huge blast straight at Gohan who unable to move from fear can only stand and watch. But then Piccolo jumps in the way, taking the beam full-on and saving Gohan in the process. It's minutes after this that Piccolo dies as a result of these injuries.
Namek, Captain Ginyu, & Frieza Sagas
Piccolo spends half of this saga on King Kai's planet at the end of Snake Way, along with Yamcha, Tien and Chao Zu, who all recieve training from King Kai while they are there. As time rolls on they are kept informed of their friends on Namek's progress, soon the time arrives for three wishes to be made and Piccolo talks to Gohan, telling him to wish that he is returned to life first. Reason being is that if his life is restored, the Earth dragon will comeback as well. Piccolo then tells Gohan to wish that he is brought to Namek so that he may fight Frieza and avenge what he has done to the Namekians. Gohan agrees with PIccolo's plan and the wishes are granted, however as they did not specify where on Namek to bring Piccolo he is randomally placed. On his way to find Gohan and the others he comes across a badly injured Namek named Nail, who suggests that to improve his chances in fighting Frieza that they merge into one. Piccolo eventually agrees and the two fuse and, as Nail said, his strength is increased.
He heads off and soon finds Gohan, Krillin and Vegeta fighting with Frieza, he steps in and fights against Frieza who at the time is in his 2nd form. Realising that Piccolo is too much, Frieza transforms into his 3rd form and greatly overpowers Piccolo. The battle between the four of them and Frieza continues and Frieza transforms one last time into his final form.
Frieza immediately kills Dende and is then challenged by Vegeta. However despite Vegeta's increased strength he is no match for Frieza. As Frieza is about to kill him, Goku finally arrives, healed. Frieza mortally wounds Vegeta, and just before he dies he pleads with Goku to kill Frieza. Goku then takes on Frieza leaving the others to watch.
Eventually it comes down to Goku using a huge Spirit Bomb, but not even that is enough to kill Frieza, in his rage, Frieza kills Krillin. The death of his long time friend pushes Goku over the edge and causes him to transform into a Super Saiyan. Goku tells Gohan to take Piccolo and Bulma and get off the planet while he deals with Frieza. Gohan obeys his father's word, but before he can accomplish this he is transported back to Earth.
Piccolo arrives on Earth with everyone who was on Namek except for Goku and Frieza, even those who had died. They soon learn that the Earth dragon revived all those killed Frieza, thus reviving Porunga and using the last wish to transport them all to Earth while Goku still fights Frieza. Via King Kai's commentry they learn that Planet Namek was destroyed and Goku with it.
Months later the Namek Dragon Balls are recharged and they try to revive Krillin and Goku. But they learn that Goku cannot be revived because he is still alive, and that he will return home soon. With the remaining wishes they revive their other friends who were killed in the fight with the Saiyans and finally wish the Nameks to a new planet to start a new life. All that is left now is to wait for Goku to return home...
Garlic Jr., Trunks, & Android Sagas
The Z Fighters gather in an abandoned section of the mountains, all sensing that Frieza is approaching Earth. But before any of them can react a mysterious youth appears out of no where and challenges Frieza, and his father King Cold alone, even turning into a Super Saiyan. He quickly disposes of Frieza and King Cold and invites them all to wait with him for Goku to arrive back on Earth, knowing that he should arrive very soon. They wait and sure enough, Goku arrives. The stranger takes Goku aside and talks to him in private, then leaves after. Piccolo actually overhears their conversation, due to his powerful hearing, but keeps quiet about all the details Goku leaves out. Goku tells the others that he was from the future and had come to warn them all that in 3 years time two powerful androids will appear, stronger than anything they have ever faced. In preparation for the day, all the Z Fighters go about training.
Three years come and go, and the day finally arrives that the Androids are supposed to appear. Goku and all the others, with the exception of Vegeta, gather by the city Trunks told him the Androids first attack. They wait and soon the time they were supposed to attack comes and passes, confused at first, they soon realise they can't sense the Androids because they are machinery and, as such, have no life energy. Forced to search the hard way, the group split up and search the city for the androids. It's Yamcha who finds them first and signals to the others, but by the time they reach him he has been badly injured. Goku tells Gohan to take Yamcha to get healed. Gohan does as he is told and soon returns back to the group, where Goku is taking on Android 19, but Goku seems to be struggling despite seeming to have the upper hand earlier. Gohan realises that the disease Trunks warned about must be affecting Goku, and as Goku drops out of Super Saiyan and is at the mercy of #19 it is then that Vegeta makes his presence known. Vegeta steps in and takes on #19 himself, also showing his new Super Saiyan skill, Yamcha then takes Goku back home to recieve the medicene Trunks left with him. Vegeta easily disposes of #19 but #20 escapes before they can destroy him. Vegeta, Gohan, Krillin and Tien head after #20 and follow him into a range of mountains. Eventually they find him, and this time Piccolo takes him on alone and overpowers him with ease. It's then that the Trunks, the boy from the future appears and also Bulma, in a hovercar. #20 takes the oppurtunity to attack Bulma's car and provide himself with a distraction to escape. Trunks, after explaining who he really is, also tells the others that the two androids they have been fighting are not the ones from his future, so the group head after #20 again, who Bulma informs is Dr Gero.
They come across Dr Gero's lab, where he has activated 3 more androids, #16, #17 and #18. The newly released androids kill Dr Gero and destroy most of the lab, then take on the Z Fighters. Insisting on a one-on-one, Vegeta takes on #18 alone, but despite his new Super Saiyan skills he is soon beaten, recieving terrible injuries. The androids take off, leaving the Z Fighters to go their own ways and rethink what to do. Piccolo heads to Kami's Lookout and asks Kami to fuse with him, knowing that their strength will greatly increase if they do so. Kami eventually agrees, and the newly fused Piccolo heads off again to face the androids.
Imperfect & Perfect Cell & Cell Games Sagas
After seeing the power of the Androids from #18's fight with Vegeta, Piccolo realises that his training has not been enough and comes to a decision - he must fuse with Kami. He heads to Kami's lookout and explains his idea, knowing that he will be much stronger if he reunites with Kami. Kami is initially reluctant to fuse with Piccolo, but realising that it is in Earth's best interest, he agrees. After they have fused, the Dragon Balls vanish and Earth is left without a guardian. Piccolo then heads off after the Androids and eventually catches up with them. He challenges Andoid #17 and the two fight, seeming reasonably equally matched. But before a winner can be decided a strange creature appears, a monster calling himself Cell. He calims to have been created by Dr Gero and has the intention of absorbing Androids #17 and #18 so that he can become Perfect, attaining his full strength. Piccolo attempts to defend the Android, knowing it will be a worse situation if he is able to grow stronger, but despite his efforts he is unsuccessful. Piccolo is beaten unconscious Cell manages to absorb Android #17.
When Piccolo awake he learns of the current situation and how they have 10 days to train to fight Cell at his Cell Games. In preparation for this, Piccolo spends a day training in the Room of Spirit and Time. Finally the day for the Cell Games arrives and they all gather to fight Cell. Goku fights him first but he gives up part the way through the fight, insisting that Gohan is stronger than him and should fight instead. Gohan is unsure about this but agrees to fight and initially doesn't seem to be making much progress. Cell is disappointed in this and wonders why Goku sent out Gohan to fight him as he was expecting a better fight. Gohan explains that when he gets angry he unlocks strength, so Cell decides to release Cell Jrs and attack Goku, Vegeta and the others in an attempt to make Gohan angry. Despite all this it doesn't seem to be enough to push Gohan over the edge, even when he realises everyone there but Trunks has died once before and as such, can't be revived again. Android #16, who also joined the others to fight Cell makes an attempt to destroy Cell by self destructing himself. But unknown to him, his bomb was removed by Bulma so his plan was a failure. Cell then destroys #16 himself, smashing him to pieces. #16's head remains intact and he talks to Gohan, telling him it's okay to get angry, if he's fighting for good. Cell gets irritated by #16's noise and smashes his head, totally destroying him, this is what sends Gohan into a rage, pushing him over the edge and transforming him into a Super Saiyan 2. In his transformed state he is easily a match for Cell, even begins to toy with him despite Goku and the others asking for him to finish Cell. This leads to Gohan's downfall, as Cell realises he cannot win he decides to make a desperate move - self destructing, an explosion powerful enough to destroy the whole planet. There's nothing Gohan can do and as he dispairs at his mistake Goku steps in, telling Gohan he did well, then teleporting himself and Cell away, sacrificing himself to save them all.
Goku teleported to King Kai's planet and apologises to King Kai saying he couldn't think of anywhere else to go. Naturally, King Kai is annoyed at Goku for killing them and their souls drift along Snake Way. They soon realise that Cell isn't with them, and that he has infact survived. Much to their horror they watch the battle offering Gohan encouragement and support until he beats Cell. Later, as everyone on Earth is wishing back to life those that were killed by Cell, Goku refuses the offer to come back, saying that he feels trouble follows him and Earth would be safer. With a wish left over Krillin asks that the bombs in Androids #17 and #18 are deactivated. Piccolo decides to remain at Kami's Lookout, making it his new home.
Majin Buu & Kid Buu Sagas
Seven years have passed since the defeat of Cell, and Piccolo has been living at the Lookout high above the Earth. When Piccolo learns that Goku will be taking part in the Tournament he decides he will enter too.
The day finally arrives and everyone gathers at the tournament, Goku and the others all make it through to the final rounds, as well as Videl and a few other strange characters. The Youth Division is first and as everyone suspected, Goten and Trunks make it to the final. It's quite close, but eventually Trunks is the winner. During the adult matchs, Piccolo decides to forfeit his round, as he senses his opponent is none other than the Lord of Lords himself, the Supreme Kai. Videl gets badly injured during her match and Gohan's is next. He is faced by the Supreme Kai's companion, Kibito, who tells him he wants to see his full power. Gohan agrees and powers up to Super Saiyan, but before they can fight Spopovitch and Yamu, two other fighters who made it to the finals, attack and steal all of Gohan's power and run off. Supreme Kai explains to them all that a wizard has appeared on Earth to ressurrect a monster known as Majin Buu, and that they will need his power to help stop this from happening. They all follow Supreme Kai to where the wizard is hiding and watch and spot him, Babidi, who has also gained control of Dabura, the king of Demons. Babidi heads inside with the energy they collected from Gohan but is aware that they are all watching him, Dabura attacks and turns both Piccolo and Krillin to stone, and kills Kabito.
When Dabura dies both Krillin and Piccolo turn back to normal and find Goten and Trunks hanging around. Vegeta is fighting with Majin Buu and seems to be doing well, but it soon becomes obvious that Majin Buu is incredibley difficult to destroy as he can reform his body from tiny pieces. Vegeta begins to run into trouble with Majin Buu, making Trunks want to step in, being quickly followed by Goten. While Trunks and Goten are over with Vegeta, he knocks the both of them out. Piccolo takes the two of them and flies off with Krillin, knowing that Vegeta is going to sacrifice his life to destroy Majin Buu. After the explosion, they realises that despite Vegeta's effort, Majin Buu is still alive, the four of them head to the Lookout to decide what to do next. It doesn't take long for Goku to join them.
They then decide what their next move should be, Goku suggests that they teach Goten and Trunks the Fusion, something if Gohan and Vegeta were still alive he would have liked to have tried with them in this situation. But before Goku is able to teach them it, he has to stall Majin Buu while Trunks goes back home to retrieve the Dragon Radar. Goku meets with Majin Buu and Babidi and is suprised by how quickly Majin Buu learns. Seeing how strong he is, Goku reveals that he can reach a level beyond Super Saiyan 2 - Super Saiyan 3. He is able to keep Majin Buu busy for long enough for Trunks to return to the lookout with the Dragon Radar, then returns there himself. Goku doesn't have long left before he must return to Heaven so in the time he has, he shows Goten and Trunks how to do the Fusion. Baba soon arrives to take Goku away and he goes back to Heaven with her, leaving Piccolo in charge of teaching Goten and Trunks.
Soon enough, their training pays off and Goten and Trunks are able to successfully fuse into Gotenks. However, this form is very arrogant and cocky and still requires more training to actually be able to beat Buu. Piccolo suggests the two of them train in the Room of Spirit and Time to get the most possible time to train, as Buu is already looking for them. When Buu arrives, Piccolo warns Goten and Trunks and leads Buu to the Room of Spirit and Time, taking the longest route possible. Once he leads Buu inside Gotenks fights with him, but because he wasn't taking the fight very seriously, Buu is able to withstand their attacks. Gotenks pretends that he has run out attacks (to make his suprise attack more dramatic) but unfortunetly it backfires as Piccolo destroys the exit to the Room, trapping them forever. Buu becomes so enraged by this that he screams so loud he is able to tear a hole and escape, forcing Piccolo and Gotenks to use the same method to escape. By the time they have escaped Buu has already eaten everyone left on the lookout and made his escape.
Piccolo and Gotenks catch up to Buu and try to beat him, but then Gohan appears! However, before Gohan can beat Buu he absorbs both Gotenks and Piccolo, making him much stronger. Much later, Piccolo is freed, along with Goten, Trunks, Gohan and Majin Buu, by Goku and Vegeta. However, shortly after, Kid Buu destroys the Earth, killing everyone with it. Later on, Vegeta makes wishs with the Dragon Balls, one being to restore the Earth, and another to bring back all those who died that day (only the good ones). Thus, Gohan and the others are brought back to life, and it's not long before Goku needs energy for the Spirit Bomb to destroy Kid Buu. Vegeta asks for everyone on Earth to give their energy to Goku, all those who know Vegeta give up their energy, along with a handful of others who decide to when he pleads desperately for it. Everyone else ignores him, Goku is able to gain a little more energy by asking, specifically from those he has met along the years, but it is Hercule who saves the day. Being the Savior of Earth, they all agree to help when Hercule asks and the Spirit Bomb grows tremendously. It's enough to do the job and finally, Kid Buu is destroyed for good, Goku makes a small request that Buu's spirit be reincarnated as a good guy...
After another 10 years past, Piccolo is living his life much like he has always done.
 Dragonball GT
Piccolo first appears in this saga when he begins to sense the strange energies emanating from Goten and Gohan and goes to investigate. Once he finds them, he immediately senses something is wrong and demands to know who has overtaken Gohan's body, but before he can receive an answer, the Baby-controlled Gohan launches a huge Kamehameha at him and leaves him for dead.
However, Piccolo did survive as Goku discovers when he returns to the Earth which is due to explode in a matter of moments. Piccolo decides to stay behind and be destroyed with the Earth as then the Black Star Dragon Balls will also be destroyed and out of harms way...
Piccolo in the Anime vs. the Manga