|“||Lay down enough ink and your special meter will fill up. Then you can use one of these (like the Inkzooka) to do major damage.||”|
— Splatoon's official website, 
Along with the Main Weapon and Sub Weapon, every set of weapons comes with a Special Weapon. These weapons are designed to be very powerful and table-turning, and may only be utilized for a short time once players have filled their Special Gauge.
When a player has a Special Weapon ready, it creates a unique effect: they will give off sparks, the tentacles on their head will become very brightly colored and glowing, bubbles will form at the top of their head as if from boiling water, and they will appear to be caught in a strong wind even when completely still.
Activating a Special Weapon makes the player's Inkling do a frontflip and completely refills the Ink Tank.
In order to use a Special Weapon, the player must fill their Special Gauge by spreading ink, or get a Canned Special in Octo Valley and Battle Dojo. Once a Special Weapon is ready, clicking will activate it. Different Special Weapons need different amounts of turf inked to fully charge, for balancing purposes; for instance, the Inkzooka requires 220 points to charge as of Version 2.0.0, whereas the Killer Wail requires only 160.
The rate at which the Special Gauge depletes after being activated depends on which particular Special Weapon is in use. If the player is splatted before the gauge is completely depleted, they will respawn with a portion of the remaining gauge filled (how much depends upon the Special Depletion class of the main weapon; see Special Depletion below). This can be increased by equipping gear with Special Saver.
Prior to the Version 2.7.0 update, when a player was splatted before the Special Gauge was depleted, the player would respawn with half of the remaining gauge filled (barring the use of Special Saver-equipped gear). With the 2.7.0 update, all main weapons fall into one of three Special Depletion classes: Light, Medium and Heavy. Weapons in the Special Depletion Light class will lose only 40% of the Special Gauge when the player is splatted. Weapons in the Special Depletion Medium class lose 60% of the Special Gauge, and Special Depletion Heavy-class weapons lose 75% of the Special Gauge.
A table showing the depletion class of all weapons can be found below.
List of Special Weapons
|Image||Special Weapon||Ink to Fill (p)||Duration (Seconds)||Damage|
|Bomb Rush||180||6||(Depends on Bomb type)|
|Inkstrike||180||2||500 (at center)|
- Special Weapons were originally called "Super Weapons." 
An Inkling with a Special Weapon ready.
Names in other languages
|Spanish (NOE)||Arma especial||Special weapon|
|Italian||Arma Speciale||Special Weapon|
|Italian||Regresso dell'Arma Speciale||Special Weapon Regress|
|Weapons in Splatoon|