So ive been thinking about this for a little while, with how people have talked about how there should be a Dash ability added to the game and how that could be implemented and it got me thinking about how there could be different abilities for different play styles, and with the addition of the chip system it started making even more sense. So heres a few ideas of how you could make this work.
1. Type of ability would depend on the type of Chip used: I was thinking that in the upgrade menu, there could be an extra slot separate from the linked "Passive stat buff" chips. The chips used would be the same ones used for the stat upgrades, but the ability would correspond with which type you used in that slot. Examples: using an Ionic Thruster (speed, acceleration boost chip) in this slot would give you the Dash ability, for a short boost of speed, potentially giving you a few seconds of speed higher than that of their max speed. (Max speed being your highest speed during Hoverheat)
For other abilities, the Electro atomic motor (bump force/resistance, throw distance, ball slowdown chip) could give the player an extra means to knock back other players, in the form of a shock wave triggered in a similar fashion to the super bounces we already have in game. It could be triggered with a button press during a falling action, maybe not requiring heights similar to successful super bounces, but upon landing the player would send out a small radius shockwave that would knockback all opposing gameball or race participants in a 360 degree area, with the direction they fly being determined by where around them the shockwave is activated.
2. The abilities cant be used without a drawback, and must have customizable strengths to suit play styles: To me the easiest way to do this would be to impose a hoverheat requirement for the use of the abilities, with the strength of the ability tied to the cost of hoverheat and decided by the level of the chip used. With this, lets say the player has a Basic ionic thruster used for their ability slot. This could have a 20-30% hoverheat requirement to use (0% being your energy level while idle), and if we say the characters max speed with hoverheat was 38, this would reguire at least 30% to activate, giving them a boost from 38 top speed to about 40-41 top speed for 3-4 seconds, but will also deplete their hoverheat to 0% regardless of how much hoverheat they had before the ability was activated. Meaning if your level of chip requires 30% hoverheat to activate, regardless of if you have above 30%, (40%,60%,100%, anything) using your ability would take you down to 0% (being your base, idle energy level). This would make use of the ability less of a constant use thing, and would make the player think how they want to use their ability more, or make them conserve Hoverheat.
And with higher levels of chips would come Higher Hoverheat requirements, as well as higher boosts to the ability. so lets say the Highest level Chips would likely have around a 90% hoverheat requirement to use (100% being unrealistic as that would give you no time to use the ability as HH runs out constantly), and would give your character a great boost, so lets say that basic ionic thruster with the 30% HH requirement and +3 top speed modifier, is now an Ultimate Ionic Thruster, with a 90% HH requirement and a +6 top speed modifier. Other abilities would scale similarly, The Shockwave would increase in max radius as the level of chip increased, so a basic chip would have a small radius and require you to land closer to the opposing player for the shockwave to hit them, and higher level chips would increase the area around you affected by the shockwave, also increasing the likelyhood of hitting multiple players if they are bunched up. The Shockwave could also add a new element to gameball in how the shockwave could cause the player with the ball to "fumble" it a certain distance, making it so the only way the ball is transferred between teams isnt only by bouncing off each other or by picking up missed throws. Conversely, the shockwave could instead be triggered by the player charging it with a certain button press, and releasing it when they want, making it so that they could more easily trigger it from a specific side of the player, knocking them a specific direction more accurately, or to knock the ball out of an opposing players hands in a certain direction, which could be used to effectively "pass" the ball from that players hands in the direction of one of your team mates.
As for other abilities for the other types of chips, so far ive though of how the Pulse Generators (jump, bounce boost chip) would obviously be to give the player a super jump, similar to the super jump triggered by super bouncing from high distances, but this one being able to be triggered from a running state or from an idle, standing state. The ability would likely take about a second to "charge" while the player holds the button that activates the ability (as the shockwave ability likely would, and probably all other abilities to keep them from being instantaneous use and require more planning and strategy), and like other abilities the, lower rank chips would give a slight boost to your max jump height (where it would be at max HH) and have a small percentage HH requirement, while higher rank chips would give your max jump height a large boost, with a high HH percentage cost.
As of yet i havent really thought of an ability that could be added for the Magnetic Dynamo Chip (slide speed, friction, combo time chip), being as how this is the chip that relates most to being able to use the new trick system and build hover heat, the only types of abilities i could think of would be a combo multipliers or a decrease to the rate at which hoverheat runs out, but this could essentially break the HH system and make it easy to have perpetually high Hover heat. The only alternative ive thought of is to make the ability something along the lines of frictionless slides or the ability to curve around corners using your slide, much as you can now, but without a decrease in speed due to decreased friction. or possibly an instant redirection of your momentum, meaning turning a full 90 degrees left or right would only make you lose a few digits of speed, meaning you could keep your speed making turns that you would have had to slow down to make. Something along those lines makes sense to me
SOOOOO yeah, essentially thats the basis of my idea, obviously not fully realized yet and many of the statistics i used would have to be modified for balancing purposes as well as tweaking to certain aspects, but i really feel like this would add a whole new level of depth to certain builds, and would make it so that even characters built towards specific play styles, could still have their ability as an extra variable and could be combined with different builds for some really interesting playstyles.