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Protean (Ability)

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Protean へんげんじざい
Flavor text
Generation VI
Changes the Pokémon's type to the type of the move it's using.
Generation VII
Currently unknown

Protean (Japanese: へんげんじざい Protean) is an Ability introduced in Generation VI. Four Pokémon can have this Ability. This Ability is exclusively obtained as a Hidden Ability.


In battle

Immediately before using any move (except Struggle), a Pokémon with Protean as its Ability will change its type to be the same type as the move it is using. Protean always causes the user to become a single-type Pokémon.

Because Protean activates prior to executing a move, the user will receive same-type attack bonus on every move it uses regardless of the move's type (except Struggle) and will always hit with the move Toxic.

When using a move that calls another move (such as Nature Power), the type of the called move will be considered. When using a move that can change type, the type it changes to will be considered. If the type of the user's move is changed, such as with Electrify or Ion Deluge, the type it changes to will be considered. When using a move that changes the user's type, such as Camouflage, first Protean changes the user's type to the type of the move, then the move will either fail or change the user's type again. When using Curse (unless its type is changed by Electrify), if the user is not already Ghost-type prior to the activation of Protean, Protean will change the user to Ghost-type, then the user will use the Ghost-type effect of Curse on itself (regardless of Crafty Shield and Follow Me or Rage Powder).

Protean will not activate if the move fails (unless it fails due to the activation of Protean), if the execution is interrupted entirely (such as by the effect of infatuation or confusion), if the move is prevented by heavy rain or extremely harsh sunlight, or if the move is prevented by Powder. Protean will activate even if the move misses, is blocked by a protection move, or fails to affect the opponent. Protean will still change the user's type when using Trick-or-Treat and Forest's Curse, regardless of whether the move successfully executes or not.

The user's new type remains in effect until changed again or until the user is switched out; negating or replacing the Ability does not change the user back to their original type.

Outside of battle

It is unknown if Protean has an effect outside of battle.

Pokémon with Protean

# Pokémon Types First Ability Second Ability Hidden Ability
Kecleon Kecleon Normal Normal Color Change None Protean
Froakie Froakie Water Water Torrent None Protean
Frogadier Frogadier Water Water Torrent None Protean
Greninja Greninja Water Dark Torrent None Protean
Please note that this is only 100% accurate to Generation VI games.
  • For Generation III games, ignore Abilities introduced in Generation IV or later and Hidden Abilities.
  • For Generation IV games, ignore Hidden Abilities.
  • For Generation V games, ignore Abilities introduced in Generation VI.


  • Since Hidden Power cannot be a Fairy-type move and neither Kecleon nor Greninja's evolution line can obtain a Fairy-type move, no Pokémon that normally has Protean can use it to become Fairy-type.

In other languages

Language Title
Mandarin Chinese 千變萬化 Qiānbiàn Wànhuà
France Flag.png French Protéen
Germany Flag.png German Wandlungskunst
Italy Flag.png Italian Mutatipo
South Korea Flag.png Korean 변환자재 Byeonhwan Jajae
Spain Flag.png Spanish Mutatipo

Project Moves and Abilities logo.png This article is part of Project Moves and Abilities, a Bulbapedia project that aims to write comprehensive articles on two related aspects of the Pokémon games.