Ascended Super Saiyan (超サイヤ人第2段階, Sūpā Saiya-jin dai ni-dankai; "Super Saiyan 1 Stage 2"), referred to in Dragon Ball Zas simply "Ascended Saiyan", is the first branch of the advanced Super Saiyan, achieved through intense training in the Super Saiyan form. It is a forced increase in the power output of the initial transformation, and thus is not in itself an actual transformation.
This stage appears similar to that of a Super Saiyan, with subtle differences. The flowing, golden hair becomes slightly more rigid and pales in color. Muscle mass also heavily increases, but not enough however to weigh the user down and reduce mobility (unlike the next stage of Super Saiyan, Ultra Super Saiyan), and the Saiyan retains their agility. As a result of the muscle increase, the Saiyan's outfit pertaining to the upper torso area will also end up shredded apart, as evidenced by Future Trunks' transformation into the form while fighting Broly resulting in his jacket being torn to shreds. The aura increases in size and becomes more jagged, accompanied by bio-electrical discharge during transformation or when preparing a massive attack such as the Final Flash. The aggressive, remorseless behavior of the initial transformation is magnified; any control over emotion brought on by increased proficiency of the Super Saiyan transformation is canceled out, and energy requirement to sustain the state becomes enormous when compared to the regular Super Saiyan state, thus reducing its effectiveness. This deficiency forced Goku, and in turn Vegeta and Trunks to discard the form.
Vegeta and Future Trunks are the first one who achieved the Ascended Super Saiyan stage while training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. Vegeta used this state to battle Cell in his semi-perfect form, the result of his absorbing Android 17. It is suggested that Vegeta had at least more than tripled his strength as a Super Saiyan while harnessing this form. However, most of it was credited to his extensive training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber, in which he spent ten additional months to the two months it took for him to attain this stage, to train himself further. Also, as he stated that Future Trunks was as strong as him to Semi-Perfect Cell (something that Future Trunks later stated when he tried to stop Cell when his father failed to stop him), it is also likely that Future Trunks had achieved a similar increase in strength in the Ascended Super Saiyan form. This was notably showcased when Vegeta reigned dominance during the fight, to the point where Cell began begging for his life and for Vegeta to show him mercy and eventually even allow him to absorbAndroid 18. Vegeta's pride, overconfidence and lust for a greater challenge got the best of him, and when Cell became perfect, the tables were quickly turned against the favor of the Saiyan prince. Vegeta proved to be no match for Perfect Cell and, despite his best efforts and Final Flash technique, he was quickly defeated with a single kick to the face that knocked him hurdling towards the sky, before being knocked out by a simple elbow drop to the back. Prior, Future Trunks also battled Semi-Perfect in the Ascended Super Saiyan form for only a few moments (in the manga he is kicked away before doing anything in the stage by Vegeta), before powering up to the Ultra Super Saiyan stage.
Goku achieved this form in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber as well, along with Future Trunks' own Ultra Super Saiyan state immediately. He demonstrated this ability to Gohan before transforming into an Ultra Super Saiyan, shortly after which he realized the vulnerabilities of these stages.
The Ascended Super Saiyan form reappeared when Vegeta and Future Trunks battled the Cell Juniors, but its power was only sufficient to fight on par with the miniature clones, the rapid energy consumption eventually bringing the Saiyans' downfall. They were, however, relieved in their battle by Gohan in his Super Saiyan 2 state, who dispatched every single Cell Junior with effortless blows.
The Ascended Super Saiyan form also appeared in two Dragon Ball Zfilms. The first use is by Vegeta and Future Trunks, during the battle against Broly in Dragon Ball Z: Broly - The Legendary Super Saiyan, before Vegeta and Trunks' second training sessions in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. However, like all of the Z Fighters battling Broly, they were easily brushed aside before lending their energy to Goku, who delivered one final punch to impale and defeat Broly.
The Ascended Super Saiyan stage's final appearance was in Dragon Ball Z: Bojack Unbound, where Future Trunks and Vegeta later used it to battle against Bojack and his henchmen, only to be quickly defeated when the brute transformed.