Support abilities (サポートアビリティ, Sapōto Abiriti?) are abilities that enhance a character. They are also called passive abilities, job traits, or auto-abilities. They range from providing bonuses to improving equipment options, general stats, physical or magical resists, and so on. Some support abilities are innate to a particular job or monster.
The original Final Fantasy IV has no specific support abilities, although equipment can provide effects akin to them. The Augment ability system is the support ability system for the 3D versions that allows characters to inherit and equip abilities from other characters.
Support abilities are tied to jobs, and many jobs have them as innate traits that they can learn via ABP so the become usable by other jobs. Some equipment also provide support effects, such as Reflect Ring providing Auto-Reflect.
Support abilities are gained by equipping the appropriate relics or equipment pieces, and they are passive during battle. These abilities are not named within the game.
Support Materia enhance the linked Magic or Summon Materia, or use the linked Materia's status or element to enhance the weapon or armor the linked Materia pair is equipped in. For example, linking All Materia to a Magic Materia will have that Materia's spells hit all targets, enemies or allies, but will have no effect on spells that are naturally multi-target.
Independent Materia provide their effects by simply being equipped, and provide stat boosts and other various enhancements, such as making all of the user's abilities target all targets with Mega All.
Similar to Final Fantasy VII, Zack can gain various support effects from equipped Materia. Via Materia Fusion, he can also apply bonus effects to Materia. He can also equip various accessories with various supports effects.
Support abilities are learned by Guardian Forces and equipped through them; without a GF the character can only use the Attack command and Limit Breaks. A character can equip maximum four support abilities at once. The GFs learn abilities by accumulating AP and via items.
Characters learn support abilities from equipment. They can be equipped from the menu via Magic Stones, which the party members gain as they level up. The party member can equip the support ability from the equipment as soon as they equip the piece, but after permanently learning the ability by accruing AP in battle, they can equip the support ability even without equipping an equipment piece that provides it. Equipping multiple pieces of equipment that provide that ability multiplies the learn rate.
Auto-abilities are found in weapons and armor, and can be customized onto them with items after the events at Guadosalam if the equipment piece has empty slots. A piece of equipment can have four auto-abilities at once. Enemies drop weapons and armor with abilities on them, and they are available in shops. Some equipment dropped by superbosses, the Dark Aeons and Penance, have a hidden support effect that yields a higher critical hit rate for the wielder.
Dresspheres learn support abilities, which are in effect whenever the character is in that dressphere. Accessories provide support effects no matter which dressphere the character equips, and Garment Grids can have special effects activate for that battle only when the character moves between nodes.
The playable characters can unlock Augments on the License Board to gain permanent support effects. In the Zodiac versions, the augments depend on which job the character has.
Characters gain support effects from accessories they can equip. Each playable character has unique equipment.
There are two types of support abilities: Auto abilities, which are exclusive to the five of six roles (excluding Medic), and passive abilities, which are weapon and accessory skills. Equipping multiple equipment pieces in the same synthesis group also unlocks additional effects, like Random: Instant Chain.
Like in its predecessor, there are two types of support abilities: Auto abilities, which are exclusive to the five of six roles (excluding Medic), and passive abilities which are weapon and accessory skills. Paradigm Pack monsters learn various skills by leveling up in the Crystarium system, and the player can infuse them with other monsters to transfer their learned abilities.
The role auto abilities and equipment passive abilities are merged into a single category of auto-abilities. Lightning can trigger these support effects via various garbs, weapons, shields and accessories.
The player can unlock new support abilities from the Ascension grid, where the effects are learned permanently. The player can also get various effects from accessories and attires, and some weapons have special effects.
Support abilities are learned by jobs or tied to equipment.