Abilities in Final Fantasy VIII are split into two categories.
Support abilities are provided by Guardian Forces and can be equipped to a character when he or she junctions a GF. These abilities are passive and provide special bonuses, such as HP and MP bonuses, or automatic status effects. Menu abilities can be used from the menu to affect shop prices and to refine items and cards.
Command abilities can be used in battle. In addition to the default Attack command, each character may equip three command abilities, provided by GFs when junctioned.