Star Wars is chock full of interesting stuff, but equipment details are rarely a major part of the story. Stormtroopers have their iconic white armor, but those nameless troopers go down pretty easy. The armor is an interesting detail but it has no mechanical game effect. Fate is more about modeling fiction than physics.
Mechanically, equipment exists largely to enable characters to take actions and use their skills: if you have a blaster, you can use your Shoot skill to attack at range.
If you don’t have the right equipment, the GM may increase passive skill roll difficulties, require skill rolls for actions that would otherwise be automatic, create aspects, or simply forbid certain actions.
In any scene, the GM may provide situation aspects based on equipment advantages or disadvantages. (This is the Quick and Dirty Story Based Gear rule from Fate Core page 281.) For example:
Dukal and Viktobi are having a spat. Dukal has a vibro axe. Viktobi has a dagger. They are fighting in an alley with the situation aspect Very Narrow. The GM gives Viktobi a free invocation of that aspect to represent the advantage a knife wielder has in a place where an axe is a clumsy weapon. In a wide open space, the advantage might be reversed.
Standard items include:
- Weapons (blasters, slugthrowers, melee weapons)
- Communication devices (commlinks, holonet transceivers, datapads)
- Medical equipment (first aid supplies, bacta tanks, prosthetic limbs)
- Security devices (locks, interfaces, slicer gear)
- Munitions (grenades, explosives)
- Sensor devices (binoculars, scanners)
- Armor (laminate body armor, reinforced clothing)
- Survival gear (vacuum suits, environmental suits, diving gear, breathers, grapple lines)
Generally, having a skill implies possession of any small items required to use it. If you have Engineering you have some tools; if you have Shoot you have a blaster or some other shooty thing of your choice; if you have Medic you have a medical kit. If you want something you don’t have, that can be managed at an appropriate level of detail using Resources, Rapport, or other skills.
Characters may have equipment aspects that are part of their personal story. Those aspects can be invoked when appropriate. For example, if you have the aspect Suit Of Fancy Clothes, then you can invoke it when making a Rapport roll to convince the bouncer to let you into the exclusive dance club.
If you want an item that has additional story effects, you can invest one or more stunts in it. Thus, for example, you could have an advanced visor with a stunt that gives +2 to Notice attempts when actively observing at ranges greater than one zone. The stunt only works when you are using that item.
There are lots of possible equipment stunts. Here are some examples:
- Accurate Weapon
- Once per scene, re-roll a failure on an attack with this weapon without spending a fate point.
- Advanced Intrusion Gear
- Gain +2 to Security rolls when using this equipment to slice into a computer system.
- Danger Prediction System
- Gain +2 to Notice rolls relating to ambushes when using this equipment.
- Gain +2 to any attempt to create an On Fire aspect (attached to a character or the environment) when using this weapon.
- Without this stunt, grenades are treated as a normal use of the shoot skill. With this stunt, grenades target everyone in a zone (including the attacker, if in that zone) separately, without dividing up the attack. Grenades have an Ammunition aspect, which can be compelled to cause the user to run out of ammo for the rest of the scene. This compel can be accepted (for a fate point) or resisted (by paying a fate point).
- Hardened Armor
- Once per scene when wearing this armor, upon taking a consequence from a physical attack, reduce its severity by by one level (a minor consequence is eliminated).
- Heavy Armor
- When you are wearing this armor your first and second stress boxes absorb 2 and 3 shifts, respectively, instead of 1 and 2.
- Heavy Weapon
- When you succeed on an attack with this weapon, you can spend a fate point to apply all shifts of that attack to consequences, not stress.
- Holonet Assimilator
- You have a cybernetic system that provides a continual stream of relevant information pulled from the galaxy’s databanks. Gain +2 to Investigate rolls when the holonet is accessible and the information it contains would be beneficial.
- Ion Weapon
- This weapon affects only electronic equipment, including droids and cybernetics. Consequences imposed by this weapon are treated as Minor for the purpose of recovery. If you succeed with style on an attack, you can trade one shift for a boost (as normal) or two shifts to place a Zapped aspect on the target (with one free invocation).
- Gain +1 zone of free movement or ignore a scene aspect that would hinder your movement from one zone to the next if it could be overcome by flying. A Create Advantage action can be used to place aspects such as Overloaded or About To Explode! on a jetpack.
- Long Range Weapon
- Get two extra zones of range when attacking with this weapon.
- Multi Spectrum Camouflage System
- Gives +2 to Stealth when wearing this clothing/armor when visual camouflage (including UV and IR) would be of assistance.
- Stun Setting
- For most purposes, there is no special need for a stun setting stunt. If you shoot someone with a weapon that has a stun setting (most blasters), then consequences and the results of taking a character out can be narrated appropriately. This stunt gives a +2 boost once per scene to an attack stated to be on stun.
Droids are important in the Star Wars movies so they need to be important in the game. Droids can be characters (PCs or NPCs). They are created like any other character with an aspect that includes their species (droid) and function (astromech droid, protocol droid, medical droid, battle droid, etc.). NPC droids can be nameless characters, supporting NPCs, or even main NPCs.
Droids don’t need to eat, drink, or breathe and are immune to poisons and disease. This does not cost a stunt. However, most NPC droids have the disadvantage that they are vulnerable to restraining bolts. A droid with a restraining bolt placed on it has an aspect which requires that the droid stay in an area designated by the owner and follow simple instructions from the owner of the bolt (a small device coded to the bolt is used to issue instructions). This aspect has one free compel for the owner of the (or GM if the owner of the bolt is an NPC) each scene that does not provide a fate point to the player.
A droid can also be associated with a PC. You can choose to have an aspect that describes a droid. If so, you can simply have the droid be represented by its aspect, or you can invest one or more stunts to involve the droid more actively in story action.
This is the default if you just have an aspect that describes your droid. A support droid is usually present but only occasionally has a significant effect on the story. Since the droid has an aspect, you can spend a fate point to invoke it. For example, if you have the aspect My Astromech Droid ZM-21, then you could invoke that when making a pilot roll to assist you in making a rapid jump to hyperspace.
A support droid can also enable you to use a skill when it might not otherwise be possible. For example, your protocol droid might allow you to use your Rapport skill with someone with whom you have no common language.
While most nameless NPC droids have no stress boxes (any hit takes them out) support droids for PCs have two stress boxes and no consequence slots. A droid that is damaged can generally be repaired.
- Control Countermeasures
- The droid is invulnerable to restraining bolts and has +2 to resist other attempts to subvert control.
- Droid Assistant
- The droid has its own skills and can use them under your instruction. The droid has four skill points (which must be purchased according to the skill column rules on p. 258 of Fate Core) and a trouble aspect. In any turn, either you act or the droid acts under your instruction, but not both. However, you and your droid can work together, per the Teamwork rules (Fate Core p. 174). You can provide instructions remotely if you have the means to do so. If you spend a fate point, both of you can act that turn.
- Droid Minion
- Requires Droid Assistant. The droid has four additional skill points.
- I’d Take A Blaster Bolt For You
- When you take stress or consequences in a conflict, spend a fate point to apply it to the droid instead as long as it makes sense for that to happen.
- That’s What I Have A Droid For
- Pick one skill on your character sheet. You don’t actually have that skill; the droid does. Whenever you use that skill in the game, what happens in the story is that the droid does it instead of you. Gain +2 with that skill (but still not higher than the game’s skill limit) as long as the droid is available to do it for you; otherwise your skill is 0.