Special weapon

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A variety of special weapons from Splatoon.
Special redirects here. For other uses of the term, see Special (disambiguation).
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[1]

Special weapons are powerful weapons in the Splatoon series that can be used only when the special gauge is full. There are several different special weapons, each main weapon having one that it can use. This works differently in single-player modes, in which special weapons are usually granted by canned specials, and in Salmon Run, in which each player can use their allotted special weapon twice per shift.

Splatoon and Splatoon 2 feature entirely different special weapons, with no special weapons from the first game returning in the second. Splatoon 3 features a mix of special weapons from Splatoon 2 and new special weapons (some of which are based on special weapons from the previous games).


An Inkling with a special weapon ready.

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. To use one, a player must fill their special gauge and may only utilize the special for a short time.

When a player has a special weapon ready, it creates a unique effect: they give off sparks, the tentacles on their head become very brightly colored and glowing, bubbles form at the top of their head as if from boiling water, and they appear to be caught in a strong wind even when completely still.

Activating a special weapon makes the player's character do a front flip and refills the ink tank.


Special weapons are available by filling the special gauge by inking the ground in matchmaking modes, obtaining a canned special in the Battle Dojo and single-player modes, starting a Salmon Run session where players have access to two specials, or starting specific missions in the Octo Expansion where the special is obtained via the equipper. Once a special weapon is ready, clicking Right Stick activates 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.[2] As of Splatoon 2, special weapons paired with different main weapons may also require different points to activate. For example, both the Slosher Deco and Inkbrush Nouveau have the Baller as their special, but while the former needs 210p to activate it, the latter requires only 180p.

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 respawn with a portion of the remaining gauge filled (how much depends upon the special depletion class of the main weapon; see special depletion). This can be increased by equipping gear with Special Saver. As of Splatoon 2, being splatted reduces the filled part of the player's special gauge by a fixed percentage, which can be modified by Special Saver or Respawn Punisher. Also, the penalty is greatly reduced if the player is splatted halfway through a Splashdown.

List of special weapons

In Splatoon, there are 7 special weapons available in multiplayer modes.

In Splatoon 2, there are 11 special weapons available in multiplayer modes. In Salmon Run, there are 4 supplied special weapons available.

In Splatoon 3, there are 20 special weapons in total, 19 of which are available in multiplayer modes. In Salmon Run Next Wave, there are 9 supplied special weapons available.

Table is sortable, initially by alphabetical order across all games. Clicking "Weapon" will sort by game and alphabetical. Clicking the game will sort by that game's order.

Weapon Description Games
Splatoon Splatoon 2 Splatoon 3
Baller A protective sphere that allows the player to advance safely. It explodes in a blast of ink when a timer expires or when the user triggers it, ending the special early.
Big Bubbler The Big Bubbler is a stationary barrier that protects from enemy ink.
Bomb Launcher The Bomb Launcher allows the player to throw a pre-selected bomb repeatedly, with no ink restriction. The player still has access to their main weapon during this period.
Bomb Rush The Bomb Rush allows the player to use their sub weapon repeatedly without consuming ink for a short time.
Booyah Bomb The user holds up a glowing ball of ink that charges up over time and can be thrown once fully charged to make an ink explosion. The user and their teammates can use the "Booyah!" signal to charge up faster.
Bubble Blower The Bubble Blower allows the player to blow up to three bubbles. The bubbles will block large areas to opponents and will explode in a deadly blast of ink if fired at.
Bubbler The Bubbler is a spherical force field that protects the user from all damage. It can be spread to teammates through physical contact.
Crab Tank The Crab Tank allows players to ride around on it and use its turrets and cannons. It also has a movement mode similar to that of the Baller where it protects the player and rolls around in the form of a ball.
Echolocator The Echolocator reveals the locations of all enemies for teammates to see on the field and the map.
Ink Armor Activating Ink Armor protects the user and all teammates from one or two attacks, depending on the strength of the attack.
Ink Storm The Ink Storm creates a rain cloud of ink. The rain cloud gradually drifts above the map, inking the ground and damaging any enemies beneath it. This special can be activated and then held indefinitely if it is not thrown.
Ink Vac The Ink Vac is a vacuum cleaner that sucks up ink that is still airborne and fires it back as a super attack, similar to the Rainmaker shot.
Inkjet The Inkjet gives its user the ability to hover in the air and shoot powerful blaster-like projectiles. Once it expires, the user automatically Super Jumps back to where they first activated it.
Inkstrike The Inkstrike is a missile that causes a large, swirling vortex of ink to appear when it lands at the location towards which the user fired it.
Inkzooka The Inkzooka shoots tall, narrow twisters of ink in rapid succession, allowing its user to quickly splat enemies at long range.
Killer Wail The Killer Wail blasts a large sound wave in the desired direction that obliterates all enemies in its path and travels through walls.
Killer Wail 5.1 The Killer Wail 5.1 is a modified Killer Wail. Six floating speakers move autonomously and attack with smaller sound waves, similar to that of the original Killer Wail, that chase down enemies.
Kraken The user transforms into the large, invincible Kraken, able to travel quickly through enemy ink and splat opponents with its melee attack.
Kraken Royale The Kraken Royale turns the player into a very large, invincible Kraken, that can splat opponents through a melee attack or a charged attack. It allows free travel through enemy ink.
Reefslider The Reefslider is an inflatable shark that the player rides on to dash forward a certain distance before exploding.
Splashdown The Splashdown causes its user to jump up and strike the ground with heavy force, causing an ink explosion around them. Its effectiveness increases when activated from great heights, including while Super Jumping. RotM only
Splattercolor Screen The Splattercolor Screen is a canister-like object that creates a large, mobile mist when thrown, similar to a Toxic Mist. Opponents caught in this mist will have their view of the game temporarily rendered in grayscale.
Sting Ray The Sting Ray fires a continuous laser that can go through walls. When not firing, users can see the silhouettes of any opponents that are not hiding in ink and are far enough away. Mobility is impaired while activated.
Super Chump The Super Chump fires many decoys that trick the opponent into thinking that a player is landing from a Super Jump. The decoys explode after a short amount of time, but the opponent can destroy the decoys.
Tacticooler The Tacticooler is a mini-fridge that when set up, contains four drinks that grant special effects, like boosting the player's speed.
Tenta Missiles The Tenta Missiles allow users to lock on to opponents before firing ten to twenty missiles between the locked-on targets.
Triple Inkstrike The Triple Inkstrike allows players to throw three missile beacons and fire missiles at where the beacons land, creating vortices of ink upon impact.
Triple Splashdown The Triple Splashdown causes its user to jump up and create two fists which strike the ground with heavy force, causing an ink explosion around them.
Trizooka The Trizooka is a modified Inkzooka that fires three blasts at once and can be fired three times in total for each use.
Ultra Stamp The Ultra Stamp is a large hammer which can be slammed repeatedly while advancing forwards and also has a jump attack. The weapon can also be thrown as a long-range attack, ending the special early.
Wave Breaker The Wave Breaker is a reconfigured badminton birdie that upon setting up, will send out wave signals across that ground that deal damage and mark opponents.
Zipcaster The Zipcaster allows players to latch onto walls from a distance and zip over to them while still being able to use their main weapon. Once it expires, the user automatically comes back to where they first activated it.
Weapon Description Games
Rainmaker The Rainmaker is a powerful weapon with a charging mechanism that can shoot large twisters (in Splatoon) or bursts (in Splatoon 2 and Splatoon 3) of ink. It is only obtainable on the ranked mode Rainmaker, during certain Challenges in Splatoon 3, the final boss fight of Octo Canyon, Bomb Rush Blush, and in two Octo Expansion stations: Bring It Station and Far-Out Station.
Princess Cannon The Princess Cannon is a modified Killer Wail themed after Pearl. It is only obtainable on MC.Princess Diaries, by any player. It functions exactly like a Killer Wail but with a much larger sound wave.


Abilities on a player's gear can affect special weapons. The following abilities have effects that directly affect the performance of special weapons.

Ability Effect Games
Special Duration Up Improves the duration of special weapons.
Special Power Up Improves the performance of special weapons.


  • The most common special weapon in Splatoon is the Inkzooka, with it being part of 16 weapon kits. The most common in Splatoon 2 is the Ink Storm, being part of 17 weapon kits. The most common in Splatoon 3 as of Version 7.0.0 is tied between Wave Breaker, Ink Vac, and Killer Wail 5.1 (not including reskins such as the Order Blaster Replica or the Hero Shot Replica).
  • Special weapons were originally called "Super Weapons" in the E3 2014 Splatoon demo.[3]
  • According to Splatoon 2's developers, the reason that no Splatoon special weapons return in Splatoon 2 is because the new weapons are designed for effectiveness in the right situation, rather than pure power.[4]
    • The in-universe reason is attributed to new regulations, as revealed in Sunken Scroll 11, where protest signs are also shown.
  • During both the Spinal Phase and Inner Agent 3 in Octo Expansion, Agent 3 is able to use different special weapons despite only using one main weapon, and is even able to use them consecutively. This is explained by Marina in the Spinal Phase fight, saying that Agent 3 had removed their limiter, which implies that Inklings and Octolings can normally use many specials and have to put on something that restricts this ability.
  • The Rainmaker is technically the only special weapon that is usable in all three games, though it is not available as part of a kit in any game.
    • The Killer Wail is also usable in some form in every game, though in different forms each time, and the Princess Cannon in Splatoon 2 is not part of a kit.
  • Until Splatoon 3 introduced checkpoints, the Rainmaker was the only special weapon that could not be dropped without the holder being splatted. It is still the only special weapon that splats its user once its duration ends.
  • The Tacticooler grants the same effects as the Full Power-Up in the Battle Dojo from Splatoon.
  • The Crab Tank is the only special to use three different buttons for its unique functions: to fire, to launch bombs, and to roll. Other specials, such as the Ultra Stamp, retain the player's usual swim form.
  • The Bomb Rush in Splatoon is the only special that cannot be paired with every sub weapon, as the sub weapon it is paired with must also be the same sub weapon used in the special itself.
    • The Bomb Rush is also the only special weapon in Splatoon that has not been repurposed or modified in Splatoon 3.

Names in other languages

Special weapon Special depletion
Language Name Meaning
Japan Japanese スペシャルウェポン
supesharu wepon
Special weapon
Netherlands Dutch Speciale wapen Special weapon
CanadaFrance French Arme spéciale Special Weapon
Germany German Spezialwaffe Special weapon
Italy Italian Armi speciali Special weapon
Russia Russian Особое оружие
Osoboye oruzhiye
Special (uncommon) weapon
SpainMexico Spanish Arma especial Special weapon
China Chinese 特殊武器
tèshū wǔqì (Mandarin)
dak6 syu4 mou5 hei3 (Cantonese)
Special weapon
Denmark Danish Specialvåben Special weapon
South Korea Korean 스페셜 웨펀
seupesyeol wepeon
Special Weapon
Norway Norwegian Spesialvåpen Special weapon
Portugal Portuguese Arma especial Special weapon
Sweden Swedish Specialvapen Special weapon
Language Name Meaning
Italy Italian Regresso dell'Arma Speciale Special Weapon Regress

See also