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Gear Abilities, or simply Abilities, are special attributes that are placed on wearable Gear in Splatoon. They provide different effects depending on the ability present and their strength is based around the number of copies if they are stackable. Each piece of gear has a specific main ability which is the same in all possessed. Certain abilities, due to how their effects work, such as Tenacity or Cold-Blooded, are only present on a specific type of gear and cannot be rolled as secondaries. All gear has slots for secondary abilities, which have weaker effects than stackable abilities.

Secondary abilities are randomly chosen whenever a gear levels up, which happens when its bar is filled through battling; the points earned in the match go towards leveling it up. Secondaries give close to half the boost of a primary ability. Higher rarity pieces of gear take more points and are longer to level up, even on the first secondary abilities. The amount of secondaries that can be present on a single piece of gear depends on the rarity (amount of stars) of the gear. The more stars there are, the more secondary abilities it comes with. Up to three secondary abilities can be present, meaning that the highest rarity is 3 stars. Although seemingly random, some Brands make getting specific abilities either more common or less common. Spyke, who can be found in an alleyway in Inkopolis, will offer to re-roll secondary abilities or increase the gear's slots in exchange for Super Sea Snails or 30,000 Cash.

Some abilities are ineffective with certain Sub and Special Weapons, offering no improvements. For example, Bomb Range Up has no effect on non-throwable Sub Weapons such as Ink Mines and Squid Beakons.


An overview of how much stackable abilities change player stats. Note the diminishing returns as more of the same ability is used.

Stacked abilities have diminishing returns applied, meaning that each additional ability of the same type will have a slightly smaller effect than the previous. As diminishing returns make it impossible for players to gain over-powered stats, it is undesirable to stack too much of the same ability. Abilities that have a small maximum effect are the least desirable to stack. For example, Swim Speed Up has the smallest maximum effect in the game at 25%, so diminishing returns become severe early relative to the other abilities. A player may not even perceive an improvement past a certain point, like after 3 main ability slots of Swim Speed Up.

This encourages players to wear a variety of different abilities, rather than focusing on one ability.


Judd's Advice
Meow! (Each piece of gear has a main ability and some unlockable abilities. The diffurence in purrformance can be pawsitively huge! When choosing your gear, consider the main ability first... and then take any additional abilities into account. Peace meowt!)

Mutually Exclusive Abilities

Some Abilities can only be used in the main Ability slot of certain types of Gear, preventing the user from having more than one Ability exclusive to that Gear type. For instance, if a player equips Tenacity, they cannot also have Comeback because both Abilities are only available in the main Ability slot of Headgear items. The groups of mutually exclusive Abilities are as follows:

List of Abilities

Ability Description Gear
Makes thrown Sub Weapons travel farther. Any
Enemy Sub Weapons within a certain distance appear on-screen as skull icons and non-lethal damage from them is reduced. Shoes
Shortens the duration of position trackers. Clothing
Improves Ink usage and recovery, swim and run speed, and Special Weapon charge rate for 20 seconds after respawning. Headgear
Increases damage done with all weapons. Any
Decreases damage taken from all attacks. Any
Tracks the enemy that splats the user and increases damage, defense, and run speed when the user themselves is tracked. Clothing
Increases Ink Tank refill rate while in squid form. Any
Decreases damage, speed, and jump penalties when standing in enemy Ink. Shoes
Decreases Main Weapon Ink usage. Any
Decreases Sub Weapon Ink usage. Any
Improves Ink usage and recovery as well as respawn time towards the end of a battle. Headgear
The user is invisible when swimming on horizontal and diagonal surfaces but has reduced swim speed. Clothing
Increases swim and run speed for the first 30 seconds of a battle. Headgear
Decreases respawn delay. Any
Increases Super Jump speed. Any
Opponents and their weapons are seen on Wiiu-gamepad-icon.png while standing on one's Spawn Point and for 3.5 seconds after leaving it. Clothing
Increases movement speed in humanoid form. Any
Increases the rate at which the Special Gauge fills. Any
Increases the duration of Special Weapons and gives the Inkstrike and Killer Wail shorter cooldown times. Any
Decreases Special Gauge loss after being splatted. Any
Hides the Super Jump target but decreases the speed of the jump. Shoes
Increases movement speed while swimming in squid form. Any
Slowly fills the user's Special Gauge when their team has fewer players than the opposing team and increases the Special Gauge's overall charge rate when active. Headgear

List of Abilities by Brand

Brand Name Games Common Ability (5x) Uncommon Ability (1/2x) Pieces of equipment (weapons and gear)
Brand amiibo.png amiibo Splatoon - - 12
Brand Annaki.png Annaki Splatoon 2 - - Unknown
Brand Cuttlegear.png Cuttlegear Splatoon - - 11
Brand Famitsu.png Famitsu Splatoon - - 3
Brand Firefin.png Firefin Splatoon Ability Ink Saver (Sub).svg Ink Saver (Sub) Ability Ink Recovery Up.svg Ink Recovery Up 17
Brand Forge.png Forge Splatoon Ability Special Duration Up.svg Special Duration Up Ability Ink Saver (Sub).svg Ink Saver (Sub) 20
Brand Inkline.png Inkline Splatoon Ability Defense Up.svg Defense Up Ability Damage Up.svg Damage Up 18
Brand KOG.png KOG Splatoon - - 2
Brand Krak-On.png Krak-On Splatoon Ability Swim Speed Up.svg Swim Speed Up Ability Defense Up.svg Defense Up 23
Brand Rockenberg.png Rockenberg Splatoon Ability Run Speed Up.svg Run Speed Up Ability Swim Speed Up.svg Swim Speed Up 22
Brand Skalop.png Skalop Splatoon Ability Quick Respawn.svg Quick Respawn Ability Special Saver.svg Special Saver 16
Brand Splash Mob.png Splash Mob Splatoon
Splatoon 2
Ability Ink Saver (Main).svg Ink Saver (Main) Ability Run Speed Up.svg Run Speed Up 23
Brand SquidForce.png SquidForce Splatoon Ability Damage Up.svg Damage Up Ability Ink Saver (Main).svg Ink Saver (Main) 20
Brand Takoroka.png Takoroka Splatoon Ability Special Charge Up.svg Special Charge Up Ability Special Duration Up.svg Special Duration Up 15
Brand Tentatek.png Tentatek Splatoon
Splatoon 2
Ability Ink Recovery Up.svg Ink Recovery Up Ability Quick Super Jump.svg Quick Super Jump 19
Brand The SQUID GIRL.png The SQUID GIRL Splatoon - - 3
Brand Toni Kensa.png Toni Kensa Splatoon 2 - - Unknown
Brand Zekko.png Zekko Splatoon Ability Special Saver.svg Special Saver Ability Special Charge Up.svg Special Charge Up 24
Brand Zink.png Zink Splatoon Ability Quick Super Jump.svg Quick Super Jump Ability Quick Respawn.svg Quick Respawn 20

Names in other languages

Language Name Meaning
FlagJapan.svg Japanese ギアパワー
Gia Pawā
Gear Power
FlagSpain.svg Spanish Potenciador Strengthener
FlagFrance.svg French Capacités Capacity
FlagItaly.svg Italian Abilità Ability

External Links