Protean (Ability)

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Protean redirects here. For the item, see Protein.

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
Changes the Pokémon's type to the type of the move it's about to use.
Generation VIII
Changes the Pokémon’s type to the type of the move it’s about to use.

Protean (Japanese: へんげんじざい Protean) is an Ability introduced in Generation VI.


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 (except Struggle) regardless of the move's type, 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 or if the move has been affected by 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 Roar, Whirlwind, 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

Protean has no 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 VII 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 or later.
  • For Generation VI games, ignore Abilities introduced in Generation VII or later.


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

In other languages

Language Title
Chinese Cantonese 變幻自如 Binwaahn Jihyùh *
變化萬千 Binfa Maahnchīn *
變幻莫測 Binwaahn Mohkchāk *
Mandarin 變幻自如 / 变幻自如 Biànhuàn Zìrú *
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

Variations of the Ability Protean

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.