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Primary Name
Heavy Gear (1st & 2nd Editions)
RPG Family
RPG System
RPG Mechanic
Alternate Names
Heavy Gear (First and Second Editions)
Heavy Gear (First Edition)
Heavy Gear (Second Edition)
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Description Edit | History

Heavy Gear is set on the world of Terra Nova, over 4,000 years in the future. On this war-torn world, the elite armor units are giant humanoid battlesuits known as Gears. City-states battle for position within their leagues, the leagues battle for control of Terra Nova, and everyone battles against the malevolent Earth forces who are trying to retake their lost colony.

As the first two editions were fairly compatible, the books for both editions are grouped under this one RPG.

More Information Edit | History

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Differences between Heavy Gear (1st Edition) and Heavy Gear (2nd Edition) rulebooks:

In its preface, Heavy Gear Second Edition is described as being 100% compatible with its predecessor, however there were a few differences between the two rulebooks.

Rules changes:

  • The RPG system remained the same.
  • The tactical system changed the initiative system, introducing the concept of command points.

Content changes:

The second edition reorganized the material, stripping out some content and replacing it with more setting and background information.

  • An eight page color section provided setting maps and material.
  • The Vehicle Construction System (VCS) was removed, and reintroduced in the Technical Manual (2nd Edition). Alterations to this system would result in changes to previously published aircraft units (in Field Guide North 2, Field Guide South 2, and primarily Tactical Air Support), but these aircraft were never officially republished.
  • The rules for integrating Heavy Gear Fighter were removed.
  • The chapter providing army lists for the Northern Guard and Southern MILICIA were removed, officially split and expanded upon in two other products (Northern Guard Army List and Southern MILICIA Army List).
  • The mini-module "When All Hell Breaks Lose" was removed.
  • A chapter on campaigning was added, including some random scenario generators.
  • A 10-page mini-sourcebook covering Peace River was added.
  • Character archetypes were modified, with some removed, and some added. Pre-calculated archetype cost listings were added (but rarely included in following products).

Further editions:

Heavy Gear (3rd Edition) broke the Heavy Gear setting apart from the core rules, Silhouette Roleplaying Core Rules (Deluxe Edition), which added a complexity mechanic, as well as d20 system conversion rules.

As of 2009, a fourth edition is currently being worked on as a collaboration between Dream Pod 9 and Steve Jackson Games.

Changes between editions of other sourcebooks:

Relationships with other products

Both 1st and 2nd editions include the RPG and Tactical System rules. The tactical game was also released as a standalone product, Heavy Gear Tactical, which was revised for the third edition as Heavy Gear Tactical Miniatures Rules, and more recently replaced by the current product line successor Heavy Gear Blitz! and its revision Heavy Gear Blitz! Locked & Loaded.

The 1st edition also included expanded rules for the Heavy Gear Fighter card game. These rules were removed from the 2nd edition.

Heavy Gear introduced the Silhouette system, which was used in Dream Pod 9's other settings, such as Jovian Chronicles and Tribe 8 (1st Edition).

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