After the bombs, the greatest killer of the human race was ignorance. All of humanity’s shared technological reliance on each other broke down. Even years after the vaults have opened, those who are wise in the ways of repairing and building machines are respected, if not worshipped. Characters who excel in the “science” skills (Mechanics, Medic, Outdoorsman, and Science) have the ability to repair and create equipment. However, they are not magicians. They need both materials and a workshop to get the job done. Building items involves four components: a workshop, ingredients, item tech level, and time.
There are four types of workshops in Fallout: Mechanics Shops, Medic Stations, Outdoorsman Camps, and Science Labs.
Used For: Conventional Weapons, Conventional Armor, Vehicles
These workshops, behind Outdoorsman Camps, are the most common in the wasteland. Mechanics shops are typically equipped with heavy physical tools (wrenches, screwdrivers, drills, vises, hammers, hacksaws, etc.) as well as heavy duty equipment like winches, integrated arc welders, table saws, and belt sanders.
Used For: Implants, Chems
Medic Stations are relatively uncommon in the wasteland, generally only being found in pre-world hospitals. Medic Stations contain tables suitable for operating, full (or close to full) sets of operating scalpels, surgical tubing, bone saws, monitoring devices, and the like.
Used For: Conventional Weapons, Conventional Armor, Ammunition, Chems
The most ubiquitous of all workshops, the humble Outdoorsman Camps can be found almost anywhere that tribals or other primitive groups of people live and work. Outdoorsman Camps consist of at least one large fire, a small set of stone or scrap metal knives, mortars and pestles for mixing and separating, and a healthy assortment of raw materials like saplings and herbs as well as animal hides, bones, and sinew. It is important to note that characters with a high enough Outdoorsman skill can create Outdoorsman Camps on their own.
N.B.: Due to the high flexibility of Outdoorsman Camps, no item with a Tech Level higher than 5 can be created at a camp. Also, all build and breakdown times are increased by 50%.
Used For: Ammunition, Plasma/Laser Weapons, Powered Armor Science Labs are rare in the extreme in the post-apocalyptic world. They were not that common to begin with, and many have been either destroyed or stripped clean since the vaults opened. Also, due to the power requirements that many items require in Science Labs, many who find them cannot use them. Science Labs contain a huge amount of specialized equipment. Beakers, burners, test tubes, laser optics, electromagnets, circuit boards and other items can all be found shoved into drawers and mounted on dusty tables.
All items in the Fallout work can be broken down into more-or-less basic components. Instead of requiring players to track dozens of minute and specific ingredients, item recipes are made up of abstracted ingredient types. These items can be found as treasure in the wasteland or stripped out of other objects. Clever scavengers will know a potential source of ingredients on sight and will break it down as quickly as possible.
- Brass Tech - Used for making most ammunition.
- Ceramics Tech - Used for some body armor.
- Chem Tech - Used in some chems and other items.
- Circuitry Tech - Used in all sorts of electronics.
- Combustion Tech - Used in some vehicles.
- Fauna Tech - Used in some armor, can be used in some TL 5 chems in Outdoorsman Camps.
- Flora Tech - Used in some TL 5 chems in Outdoorsman Camps.
- Fusion Tech - Used for energy weapons and a few other items.
- Gear Tech - Used in some items with gear-driven parts.
- Hydraulic Tech - Used in some vehicles and power armor.
- Medic Tech - Used for special medical items like stims, doctor bags, and implants.
- Metal Tech - Used in a lot of items.
- Motor Tech - Small motors, used in things like miniguns, power armor, etc.
- Optics Tech - Used in laser items.
- Plastic Tech - Used in a variety of items.
- Propellant Tech - Used for making conventional ammo and explosives.
- Pulley Tech - Used for bows, vehicles, and powered armor.
- Screen Tech - Used on anything with a monitor.
- Spring Tech - Small springs, used in a lot of guns and some other items.
- Textile Tech - General cloth, used in a lot of assorted items.
- Vacuum Tech - Any circuitry tech can be subbed with 3x the amount of vacuum tech (to resist EMPs) but the item weight is also increased by 25%.
- Wood Tech - Used mostly for gun stocks and a lot of melee weapons.
Item Tech Level and Time
All items have a tech level, which defines how complex the item is and, generally speaking, gives a rough estimate of where it fell in the timeline of Earth's history.
- 1 - Primitive, stone age - Extremely basic weapons and textile-based armor
- 2 - Ancient, tribal - Flimsy melee weapons, flimsy metal and leather armor
- 3 - Medieval - Reliable melee weapons, basic metal and boiled leather armor
- 4 - Early Modern - Primitive firearms, advanced plate armor
- 5 - Industrial Revolution - Reliable rifles, revolvers, steam tech, slow/short range cars, refined oil as fuel, lightbulbs, assembly lines, unreliable chems
- 6 - World War Era - Grenades, early body armor, machineguns, tanks, bazookas, planes, basic automobiles, basic chems
- 7 - Information Age - Modern computers with high communication abilities, advanced automatic weapons and composite body armor, jet planes, helicopters, laser-guided missiles, advanced chems
- 8 - Cusp of Apocalypse - Personal laser weapons, powered armor, portable rail/coil guns, super-vacuum tech, proliferation of high volume small energy cells and micro-fusion cells
- 9 - Survivor Era - Unknown frontiers of advanced technology
Multiply the TL by 2 to arrive at the required skill total to make the item. E.g.: The .22 Rifle has a TL of 5, Mechanics. Thus, you would need a 10 Mechanics skill total to make it. An item takes a number of half hours to make equal to Tech Level * # of techs used. E.g.: A 9mm Autoloader (TL 6, Mechanics) requires: 2 Metal Tech, 2 Spring Tech + 1 Plastic Tech or 1 Wood Tech (grip). The character must have a Mechanics skill of 12, access to a Mechanics Shop, and must work on it for 15 hours ([6 TL * 5 Tech count] / 2). If another character wants to assist, he or she may do so if he or she has half of the total skill requirements necessary. This cuts the total time required by 50%. Only one character may assist (two in the shop at a time).
To make weapons, characters need access to a Mechanics Shop, one of the workshops. They also need to have a working knowledge of Mechanics and Firearms. To make a workable Firearm, a character needs a skill total equal to or great than 2x the Tech Level of the item. E.g.: Bob wants to make a .22 Rifle. The .22 Rifle has a TL of 5, so he would need a skill total of 10 to make it. For Tech ingredients, use the following list:
- Autoloaders: 2 Metal Tech, 2 Spring Tech + 1 Plastic Tech or 1 Wood Tech (grip)
- Machineguns: 5 Metal Tech, 4 Spring Tech + 2 Plastic Tech or 2 Wood Tech (stock/grip)
- Miniguns: 6 Metal Tech, 6 Spring Tech, 1 Motor Tech + 3 Vacuum Tech or 1 Circuitry Tech
- Revolvers: 2 Metal Tech, 1 Spring Tech + 1 Plastic Tech or 1 Wood Tech (grip)
- Rifles/Shotguns: 4 Metal Tech, 1 Spring Tech + 2 Plastic Tech or 2 Wood Tech (stock)
- Submachineguns: 3 Metal Tech, 3 Spring Tech + 2 Plastic Tech or 2 Wood Tech (stock/grip)
- Plasma Weapons: + 2 Fusion Tech
- Laser Weapons: + 1 Fusion Tech, 1 Optics Tech
- Melee and Unarmed Weapons, TL < 4: A total of 2 Tech, Metal or Wood, as appropriate (4 Tech for Large)
- Flamethrower: 5 Metal Tech, 1 Spring Tech
- Hand Flamer: 3 Metal Tech, 1 Spring Tech
- Laser Saw: 2 Metal Tech, 1 Optics Tech, 1 Fusion Tech
- Pistol Katar: 3 Metal Tech, 2 Spring Tech
- Power Fist: 3 Metal Tech, 1 Motor Tech
- Ripper: 4 Metal Tech, 1 Motor Tech, 1 Gear Tech + 3 Vacuum Tech or 1 Circuitry Tech
- Tesla Glove: 3 Metal Tech, 2 Fusion Tech + 9 Vacuum Tech or 3 Circuitry Tech
In addition to salvaging Tech from creatures and ruins, characters may also breakdown items for Tech. Breaking down items takes half the time it requires to build it, requires half the skill, and yields half the tech (all rounded down). E.g.: Breaking down the afore-mentioned 9mm Autoloader would require a 6 Mechanics, access to a Mechanics Shop (or a Lil' Shop, since the requirement is under 15), take 15 hours, and give back 1 Metal Tech, 1 Spring Tech, and 0 Plastic/Wood Tech.