Outfitting the modern character with the proper equipment is often just as important as the right selection of skills, abilities and training. Everything from personal protection, to weapons, to survival and electronic gear, can mean the difference between life and death.
This section covers the wide variety of general gear available to characters of all sorts.
A travel case is a reinforced metal box with foam inserts. Wing-style clamps keep it from opening accidentally.
A briefcase can carry up to 5 pounds worth of gear. A briefcase can be locked, but it’s cheap lock is not very secure (Disable Device DC 20; break DC 10).
A combination tool bag and notebook computer case, this has pockets for tools, pens, notepads and cell phones. It even has a clear plastic flap for maps or plans. Made of durable fabric, it holds 10 pounds worth of equipment and comes with a shoulder strap.
This is a small backpack, the sort often used by students to carry their books around, or by outdoor enthusiasts on short hikes. It holds 8 pounds of gear and fits comfortably over one or both shoulders.
Handbags provide another way to carry 2 pounds of equipment. The cost shown is for a basic bag; high-fashion purses can increase the cost.
This lightweight black bag has a spacious inner compartment capable of holding roughly 8 pounds of gear and can hold an additional 4 pounds in six zippered external compartments. The larger version holds 12 pounds of equipment in the internal compartment and another 6 pounds in the zippered external pouches. A range pack easily holds several pistols and a submachine gun and the larger version can hold disassembled rifles.
Originally developed for use by police officers, this portable file cabinet has found favor with traveling salespeople. This hard-sided briefcase takes up the passenger seat of an automobile and provides easy access to files, storage for a laptop computer and a writing surface.
It holds 5 pounds worth of equipment and has an average lock (Disable Device DC 25; break DC 15).
The items described here represent special clothing types or unusual outfits that a character might need to purchase.
Clothes also help to hide firearms, body armor and small objects. Tightly tailored clothing imposes a penalty on an attempt to conceal an object; clothing purposely tailored to conceal objects provides a bonus.
An outfit of clothing represents everything a character needs to dress a part: pants or skirt, shirt, undergarments, appropriate shoes or boots, socks or stockings and any necessary belt or suspenders.
A business outfit generally includes a jacket or blazer and it tends to look sharp and well groomed without being overly formal.
Casual clothes range from cut-off jeans and a t-shirt to neatly pressed khakis and a hand-knit sweater.
From a little black dress to a fully appointed tuxedo, formal clothes are appropriate for “black tie” occasions. Special designer creations can have a cost much higher than shown on the table.
They’re rugged, comfortable and provide lots of pockets. They are also printed in numerous solid colors and virtually infinite terrain-specific camouflage patterns.
When worn in an appropriate environment, fatigues grant a +2 bonus on Stealth checks.
From the cable guy to a senior Air Force officer, people on the job tend to wear uniforms—making such clothing an essential part of some disguises, since a uniform inclines people to trust the wearer.
The ultimate in camouflage, a ghillie suit is a loose mesh over garment covered in strips of burlap in terrain-appropriate colors, to which other camouflaging elements can easily be added. A figure under a ghillie suit is nearly impossible to discern.
A character wearing a ghillie suit with appropriate coloration gains a +10 bonus on Stealth checks.
In addition to keeping a character warm and dry, coats and jackets provide additional concealment for things a character is carrying (they often qualify as loose or bulky clothing; see Concealed Weapons and Objects).
A lightweight outer garment fashioned after the fatigue uniforms worn by military personnel when performing their standard duties.
An outer garment worn on the upper body. Its length and style vary according to fashion and use.
This winter coat grants the wearer a +2 equipment bonus on Fortitude saves made to resist the effects of cold weather.
Made of cotton with mesh panels to keep the wearer cool, the photojournalist’s vest has numerous obvious—and hidden—pockets.
It counts as loose and bulky clothing when used to conceal small or smaller weapons and also grants the “specially modified to conceal object” bonus when used to conceal tiny or smaller objects.
This is a lightweight jacket made of wind-resistant material.
This sturdy leather belt has numerous pockets and loops for tools, nails, pencils and other necessities for repair and construction work, making it easy to keep about 10 pounds of items on hand. The pockets are open and items can easily fall out if the belt is tipped.
Rules for operating computers appear under the Knowledge (technology) skill. Some of the items in this section have monthly subscription costs as well as initial purchase costs. This accounts for both costs; once a character has obtained the item, there is no need to worry about ongoing subscription costs.
A digital camera uses no film; instead, its pictures are stored to a computer as image files. No film developing is necessary. A digital camera is capable of taking a still picture, video and audio files.
Hard to find, but still around. Film is still used in high-end professional work due to the ability to enlarge film images better than digital images.
A digital communications device that comes in a hand-held model or as a headset, a cell phone uses a battery that lasts for 72 hours before it must be recharged. It works in any area covered by cellular service.
Whether a desktop, notebook or tablet model, a computer usually includes a keyboard or virtual input interface, a mouse or touchpad, a monitor, speakers, an optical drive or USB storage interface, a broadband or wireless modem and the latest processor. The latest computers can store large amounts of digital information, most often measured in gigabytes or even terabytes. A character needs a computer or smart-phone to make complex Knowledge checks involving the Internet.
These tiny recorders can record up to 48 hours of audio and can be connected to a computer to download the digital recording. Digital audio recorders can pick up sounds within 50 feet.
Digital video cameras record audio and video activity in a digital format, much like digital cameras record still images. This may be stored on a memory-card, a DVD, or even directly to a computer hard-drive, depending on the camera model. Some are also capable of taking still photos.
A modem allows a character to connect a computer to the Internet. To use a modem, a character must have a computer and an appropriate data line (or a cell phone, in the case of a cellular modem).
This object looks much like a bulky cell phone and functions in much the same way as well. However, because it communicates directly via satellite, it can be used anywhere on earth, even in remote areas well beyond the extent of cell phone service.
The color inkjet printer described here is suited for creating hard copies of text and image files from computers.
A color flatbed scanner allows the user to transfer images and documents from hard copy onto a computer in digital form.
A Smart Phone is a handy tool for storing data. They can be linked to a notebook or desktop computer to move files back and forth and can make a phone call. Different apps that can provide fun or serious uses can be downloaded.
This hand-held radio transceiver communicates with any similar device operating on the same frequency and within range.
Note: There are various options available. Some of these options include: various frequency bands (HF/VHF/UHF) licensed or unlicensed options, antenna sizes, voice scramble and frequency-hopping algorithm to minimize the chances of anyone even knowing a radio is in operation.
Keeping an eye on suspects or tracking the moves of potential enemies is a crucial part of the modern adventurer’s job.
This device, easily concealed in the palm of one hand, emits digital tones that convince the phone system to make a long-distance connection free of charge. They also let a user “bounce” a call through multiple switches, making the call harder to trace.
The DC of any Knowledge (technology) check to trace the call is increased by 5.
When a phone line contains a caller ID defeater, phones attempting to connect with that line show up as “anonymous” or “unavailable” on a caller ID unit. Such a call can still be traced as normal, however.
About the size of a small briefcase, a cellular interceptor can detect and monitor a cell phone conversation within a 5-mile area by listening in on the cellular service’s own transmitters. Intercepting the calls of a particular cell phone requires a Knowledge (technology) check (DC 25); if the user knows the phone number of the phone in question, the DC drops by 10. Obviously, the phone must be in use for someone to intercept the call. A cellular interceptor cannot be used to intercept regular (ground line) phone connections.
This device resembles an oversized telephone handset with a numeric keypad on the back and wire leads hanging from the bottom. It functions as a portable, reusable telephone line tap.
With a Craft (electronic) DC 10, a user can connect to a phone wire and hear any conversation that crosses it. A lineman’s buttset is a common tool for telephone repair personnel.
This handheld device provides a +10 equipment bonus on all Perception checks involving metal objects.
Night vision goggles use passive light gathering to improve vision in near-dark conditions. They grant the user the ability to see in darkness, also called dark-vision (range 120 ft.)—but because of the restricted field of view and lack of depth perception these goggles provide, they impose a –4 penalty on all Perception checks made by someone wearing them.
Night vision goggles must have at least a little light to operate. A cloudy night provides sufficient ambient light, but a pitch-black cave or a sealed room doesn’t. For situations of total darkness, the goggles come with an infrared illuminator that, when switched on, operates like a standard flashlight whose light is visible only to the wearer (or anyone else wearing night vision goggles).
Note: Some NVGs have a flare filter built in so that a bright normal light has no effect, some temporarily shut downand some are ruined by it.
Plug this into a telephone line between the phone and the outlet and it helps detect if the line is tapped. To detect a tap, make a Knowledge (technology) check (the DC varies according to the type of telephone tap used; see below). With a success, the tap detector indicates that a tap is present. It does not indicate the type or location of the tap however. Also, it can’t be used to detect a lineman’s buttset.
These devices allow a character to listen to conversations over a particular phone line.
Essentially a highly specialized computer, a line tracer hooked to a phone line can trace phone calls made to that line, even if there’s a caller ID defeater hooked up at the other end. All it takes is time.
Operating a line tracer is a full-round action requiring a Knowledge (technology) check DC 15. Success gains one digit of the target phone number, starting with the first number of the area code. If a check fails then you are unable to acquire the number and have to start from the beginning of the number again.
This category covers a wide variety of specialized equipment used by professionals in adventure-related fields.
An exceptionally heavy wire cutter, a bolt cutter can snip through padlocks or chain-link fences.
This set of odd-shaped flat metal bars can be slipped into the window seam of a car door to trip the lock. The DC of a Disable Device check to accomplish this varies with the quality of the lock.
This kit contains everything needed to set detonators, wire explosive devices and disarm explosive devices. Detonators must be purchased separately.
A roll provides 70 feet of tape, 2 inches wide.
This collection of hand tools and small parts typically includes a variety of pliers, drivers, cutting devices, fasteners, power tools and leads and wires.
Law enforcement agencies around the world use generally the same tools to gather evidence.
Purchasing a falsified driver’s license from a black market source can produce mixed results, depending on the skill of the forger.
Typically, a forger has the Linguistics skill. When a character purchases a fake ID, the GM secretly makes a Linguistics check for the forger, which serves as the DC for the opposed check when someone inspects the fake ID. The cost of a fake ID is $100 + $10 per each rank in the forger’s Linguistics skill.
This kit contains everything needed to use the Linguistics skill to prepare forged items.
Handcuffs are restraints designed to lock two limbs—normally the wrists—of a prisoner together. They fit any Medium-size or Small human or other individual that has an appropriate body structure.
This collection of hand tools and small parts typically includes a variety of pliers, drivers, cutting devices, fasteners and even power tools.
This device contains several different screwdrivers, a knife blade or two, can opener, bottle opener, file, short ruler, scissors, tweezers and wire cutters. The whole thing unfolds into a handy pair of pliers.
The tool is useful for certain tasks, as determined by the GM, but may not be useful in all situations.
Note: This tool eliminates the penalty for using Craft (electronics/mechanical/structural) without a tool kit, but will not give a bonus.
This waist pack contains a first aid kit, a compass, waterproof matches, a lightweight “space” blanket, a standard flashlight and 50 feet of durable nylon rope, two smoke grenades and one signal flare.
This device is designed to help the police end car chases. The strip comes rolled in a spool about the size of a small suitcase. Deploy it by rolling it across a roadway, where it lies like a flat, segmented belt. (The user can roll it out onto the road without entering the lane of traffic.) Until the strip is activated, the spikes do not protrude and cars can pass safely over it. When the user activates it (via a control device attached to the end of the strip by a 10-foot-long cord) the spikes extend.
Each time a individual moves through a square containing an activated spike strip at any rate greater than half speed, or each round a individual spends fighting in such an area, the spike strip makes a touch attack roll (base attack bonus +0). The strip deals 2 points of damage on a successful hit and the injury reduces foot speed to half normal (a successful Heal check, DC 15, or one day’s rest removes this penalty).
Wheeled vehicles passing over the strip are automatically hit—although vehicles equipped with puncture-resistant tires are not affected.
About the size of a small backpack, this kit contains the instruments needed for rudimentary emergency field surgery.
Survival gear helps characters keep themselves alive in the great outdoors.
Binoculars are useful for watching opponents, wild game and sporting events from a long distance.
This disposable plastic stick, when activated, uses a chemical reaction to create light for 6 hours. It illuminates an area only 5 feet in radius. Once activated, it can’t be turned off or reused. The listed cost is for a pack of 5 sticks.
A compass relies on the Earth’s magnetic field to determine the direction of magnetic north. A compass grants its user a +2 equipment bonus on Survival checks.
This portable apparatus uses a chemical spray to extinguish small fires. The typical fire extinguisher ejects enough extinguishing chemicals to put out a fire in a 10-foot-by-10-foot area as a move action. It contains enough material for two such uses.
These eye coverings provide total protection against blinding light.
Flashlights come in a wide variety of sizes and quality levels. Those covered here are professional, heavy-duty models, rugged enough to withstand the rigors of modern adventuring. Flashlights negate penalties for darkness within their illuminated areas.
This apparatus covers the face and connects to a chemical air filter canister to protect the lungs and eyes from toxic gases. It provides total protection from eye and lung irritants. The filter canister lasts for 12 hours of use. Changing a filter is a move action. The cost for one extra filter canister is $50.
Note: A gas mask DOES NOT supply oxygen in a low-ox environment.
Global positioning system receivers use signals from GPS satellites to determine the receiver’s location to within a few dozen feet. A GPS receiver grants its user a +4 equipment bonus on Survival checks, but because the receiver must be able to pick up satellite signals, it only works outdoors.
While a compass or GPS receiver can help a character find their way through the wilderness, a map can tell a character where he is going and what to expect when he gets there.
They can be purchased for most major metropolitan areas, detailing every street in the entire region.
A tactical map covers a small area—usually a few miles on a side—in exacting detail. The map gives a +2 equipment bonus to Survival and Knowledge (tactics) checks, due to the increased detail of information provided
This is a lightweight vest with a series of pockets for items such as a compass, spare ammunition magazines, pressure bandages and a radio, along with loops for attaching grenades, knives, or tools. It can hold up to 40 pounds of equipment.
A mesh vest provides a +2 bonus to Strength for the purpose of determining carrying capacity.
This small stove works on kerosene or white gasoline and can easily be broken down and carried for backpacking.
As if modern weapons weren’t dangerous enough, a number of accessories can increase their utility or efficiency.
For weapons that use box magazines, a character can purchase extras.
A detonator activates an explosive, causing it to explode. The device consists of an electrically activated blasting cap and some sort of device that delivers the electrical charge to set off the blasting cap. Connecting a detonator to an explosive requires a Craft (explosives) check (DC 15). Failure means that the explosive fails to go off as planned. Failure by 10 or more means the explosive goes off as the detonator is being installed.
This is a detonator without a built-in controller. It can be wired into any electrical device, such as a light switch or a car’s ignition switch, with a Craft: Explosives check (DC 10). When the electrical device is activated, the detonator goes off.
This device consists of two parts: the detonator itself and the activation device. The activation device is an electronic item about the size of a deck of cards, with an antenna, a safety and an activation switch. When the switch is toggled, the activation device sends a signal to the detonator by radio, setting it off. It has a range of 500 feet.
This is an electronic timer connected to the detonator. Like an alarm clock, it can be set to go off at a particular time.
This is the simplest form of detonator. The blasting cap connects by a wire to an activation device, usually a small pistol-grip device that the user squeezes. The detonator comes with 100 feet of wire, but longer lengths can be spliced in with a Craft: Explosives check (DC 10).
Holsters are generally available for all Medium-size or smaller firearms.
This holster holds the weapon in an easily accessed—and easily seen—location.
A concealed carry holster is designed to help keep a weapon out of sight (see Concealed Weapons and Objects). In most cases, this is a shoulder holster (the weapon fits under the wearer’s armpit, presumably beneath a jacket). Small or Tiny weapons can be carried in waistband holsters (often placed inside the wearer’s waistband against his or her back). Tiny weapons can also be carried in ankle or boot holsters.
An illuminator is a small flashlight that mounts to a firearm, freeing up one of the user’s hands. It functions as a standard flashlight.
This small laser mounts on a firearm and projects a tiny red dot on the weapon’s target. A laser sight grants a +1 equipment bonus on all attack rolls made against targets no farther than 30 feet away. However, a laser sight can’t be used outdoors during the daytime.
A scope is a sighting device that makes it easier to hit targets at long range. However, although a scope magnifies the image of the target, it has a very limited field of view, making it difficult to use.
A standard scope increases the range increment for a ranged weapon by one-half (multiply by 1.5). However, to use a scope a character must spend a standard action acquiring his or her target. If the character changes targets or otherwise loses sight of the target, he or he must reacquire the target to gain the benefit of the scope.
An electro-optical scope functions the same as a standard scope in normal light. In darkness, however, the user sees through it as if he had the dark-vision ability granted by night vision goggles.
A speed loader holds a number of rounds in a ring, in a position that mirrors the chambers in a revolver cylinder. Using a speed loader saves time in reloading a revolver, since a character can insert all the rounds at once.
A suppressor fits on the end of a firearm, capturing the gases traveling at supersonic speed that propel a bullet as it is fired. This eliminates the noise from the bullet’s firing, dramatically reducing the sound the weapon makes when it is used. For handguns, the only sound is the mechanical action of the weapon (Perception check, DC 15, to notice). For longarms, the supersonic speed of the bullet itself still makes noise. However, it’s difficult to tell where the sound is coming from, requiring a Perception check (DC 15) to locate the source of the gunfire.
Suppressors cannot be used on revolvers or shotguns. A suppressor purchased for one weapon can be used for any other weapon that fires the same caliber of ammunition.