This thread is about Gear lore; specifically, the Appearance, Description, and Origin of GEAR in SW:GOH. (I admit upfront, I have gone down a long and terrible road that probably does not interest most of you.)
Where did the SWGOH artist come up with the gear pictures from? How legit are the names of the equipment and their manufacturers? And what does it really do in the SW universe?
I'm a huge fan of EU (now "Legends") material, and sometimes have a *little* OCD research reaction when trying to dig up the answers. So when I thought to myself: I wonder if 'Loronar' is a real SW Legends name, what ended up happening is that I went on an exhaustive search to find background info on every gear item in SWGOH.
**This information is still incomplete. If you have any info to help fill in the blanks, behind-the-scenes stuff, or just fun facts about what the gear was supposed to do, please comment about it. I have not played every SW game or read every comic book, I have neither eidetic nor encyclopedic SW knowledge. If you can help me complete this table, my OCD brain will forever be grateful!!**
A/KT Stun Gun:
A/KT stands for Ayelixe/Krongbing Textiles. This company made textiles and clothing in Legends material, but not weapons. They did make combat and stealth suits though. I cannot find anything approximating the very specific grip shown in the gear picture. This looks vaguely like the Merr-Sonn Q2 Holdout Blaster used in Episode 1, but lacks the correct coloring, grip, emitter, and exact proportions. I'm positive there is a card or game out there that this image is based on, please let me know if you have seen this stun gun! Of course, now that I've posted this everyone will probably jump in saying it's obviously from X game that I've never played... KOTOR 2 maybe?
Arakyd Droid Caller:
This is used in A New Hope
by Luke, Datcha, and other jawas. Han is also described to have one. The prop used by Luke almost perfectly matches the SWGOH artwork: the ridges in the chrome top piece, the silver dial and rectangular bits below line up in the right spots. The angle of the SWGOH art cuts off most of the lower black extension.
Arakyd is a droid company associated with making Probedroids for the empire, as well as the smaller probe droids Maul used on Tatooine, so maybe they would actually make this caller. However, there is no official confirmation of Luke's model being directly associated with Arakyd.
Athakam Medtech is a medical supply company in Star Wars Legends material. The other medpac pictured is from the online Star Wars: Galaxies trading card game. The general symbol on the medpac looks similar (type of cross with extraneous red dots/lines bisecting the areas between cross beams) but the overall design of the medpac is quite different. On closer inspection, the game medpac seems to have the same Health symbol that appears on Health Mods and HOT buffs (the weird lopsided cross). That symbol comes from the Clone Wars series (see picture of Kix with Medic symbol on arm). Since health restoration and healing is such a huge part in videogaming, I'm convinced this gear is based off some SW game's healing item. I can't find an actual picture of Kix or any other clone Medic using such a medpac, so if you've seen it happen, be sure to post a screen capture.
BAW Armor Mod:
BAW stands for Baktoid Armor Workshop. BAW made most of the Droid Army ground assault craft, like the AAT and MTTs you see in the Naboo invasion. The colors and style seem to be related to the B2 battle droids, but I have not found an exact source of the artwork used in SWGOH. The B2 droids in Galactic Battlegrounds seem to have an especially close color match (pictured). If you have seen something in a game or comic, post a comment.
BioTech is a cybernetics company owned by Neuro-Saav. They make devices such as Lobot's halo, which lets him interface directly with Cloud City's mainframe. I'm pretty sure the BioTech Implant pictured here is some sort of cyborg eye (what other implant would be spherical? ... don't answer that!!) and I think the best match for an eye is that of Lauli Wahlo, a character who appears in just a single episode of the Clone Wars
show. It's blue, has some ridges in the right places (but not exactly). I think this is an 80% match. The make of Wahlo's eye goes unnamed, but there is a fair chance it was either by BioTech or straight from Neuro-Saav itself.
BlasTech Weapon Mod:
I'll be honest, I don't have the slightest clue as to where the design of this gear comes from. BlasTech probably made billions of mods for their weapons - they supplied all the E-11s to stormtroopers and the Clone blasters as well. BlasTech also made the 'Cybernetic Weapon Enhancement Mod' - a false limb that functioned as a blaster, but it probably cost an arm and a leg.
Anyway, if you think you've seen this dumb circle somewhere else in the SW galaxy, post it below to impress everyone with your unparalleled i-spy skills.
Carbanti Sensor Array:
Used by Han Solo in Empire Strikes Back
, this is an EnhanceScan; a general-purpose scanner manufactured by CryonCorp. It's not immediately obvious from the screenshot with its antenna extended, but the shot of the prop is a spot-on match for the game artwork, just mirrored horizontally and given a red glow to that dark rectangle.
Carbanti makes shipboard electronics for X-Wings, as do many other companies, like FabriTech. Why Carbanti was chosen to replace 'CryonCorp' for this item is unknown. Wait... picture an EA/CG meeting where the dialogue is something like this:
"and they'll need to collect 50 Cryon Sensor salvages to make 1 Cryon!"
"Cryon sounds too much like Crying. Too depressing, we'll lose players. Pick a different fake SW company."
"And change collecting 50 to 20?"
"Stick to 50. They need to stay mildly depressed."
Maybe partially true story?
This is a Gilette Sensor Excel ("for Women") spray painted metallic gray in real life. Oops, sorry, I mean this is a SoroSuub Comlink, called the 'Hush-98'. One of these is used by Qui-Gon in Phantom Menace
to communicate with Obi-Wan while they are on Tatooine. It's capable of sending data and communication long-range, like blood sample analysis, I guess. A popular bit of trivia about the Hush-98 is that it is a barely-disguised women's razor: you can still clearly see the wavy grip marks on it when QGJ 'clicks' Anakin's blood sample into its base. What you don't know is that Gilette secretly installed walky-talky speakers in all their razors as a reverse prank. Next time you shave, release the blade 3 times quickly and it should connect you with Lliam Neeson if he is within range (/s).
Chedak is an actual SW company that specializes in communication technology. The radio on the Millennium Falcon is a Chedak model. It's this kind of detail that continues to bug me. Someone on SW:GOH staff obviously was obsessive enough to know that Chedak was a company that specialized in comlinks and radios, but when it came time to name this gear in-game, they threw out 'SoroSuub' and replaced it willy-nilly.
Chiewab Hypo Syringe:
Chiewab is a SW Medical, pharmaceutical and chemical company, mentioned in in recent novel Bloodlines
. The story doesn't mention Hypo Syringes, but that doesn't mean Chiewab doesn't supply them. The closest design match I've found to this gear comes from a combination of images. First there's a rendition of a 2-1B medical droid that first appeared in the book Ultimate Star Wars
on 9/1/15. It depicts a 2-1B unit with a very similar attachment, dual transparent vials, one shorter and a longer one with a needle tip. The rest of the image doesn't match the SWGOH artwork. The design cues from the 'handle' seem to come from screen shots of 2-1B in Empire Strikes Back
as he inspects a dead wampa. His injector here only appears to have 1 needle, but the blocky construction and grip texture mirror the SWGOH artwork. It's also possible there is a completely separate item this is based off of, I would reason either a Rebels
animated episode, released sometime after that 2-1B artwork from September 2015. The bright white/red colors and blocky appearance would fit in perfectly to either of those shows. If you can confirm, make a note of it below.
Czerka Stun Cuffs:
has a scene where Luke puts Chewie in handcuffs. The film depicts these as smooth cuffs with a obvious clasp mechanism and bronze sheen, very different from the stun cuffs in SWGOH. In ESB
Chewie is put in cuffs again
, but these are standard Imperial Binders, carried by stormtroopers. Wookiepedia also mentions Stuncuffs made by Merr-Sonn, TaggeCo, and Mandalorians, but not Czerka. Czerka Arms is a background SW company, primarily known as a KOTOR antagonist. Then we have this prop pic is of SC-401 Stun cuffs, made by Locris Syndicated Scurities. This is undoubtably the source of the SWGOH stun cuff artwork, based on position of the quartile dark gray ridges along the edge of each cuff (If you didn't see them before, take a closer look!). Picture is from the New Essential Guide to Weapons and Technology. Again, we see a manufacturer's name change from the original and the original image flip from the source image. Still don't know why, exactly.
This chunky-bordered iPad is actually a Versafunction88 datapad, made by MicroData Technologies. There are really clear pictures of it from the Essential Guide
and also the online SW: Galaxies Trading card game. I think the SWGOH art is mostly derived from the Galaxies
depiction, based on the reduced aspects of the data port on the top of the pad, and the relative thinness when viewed from that angle. 11 years before any iPads existed, Phantom Menace
previewed their awesome capabilities on a MicroData datapad (apparently not the 88 version) when Shmi used one to watch Anakin podrace. She literally tells him "I die every time I watch you race," but she's addicted to that screen time, what can you do??
If you've seen that cursed Seagulls video, you know the fusion furnace is (hit in the head with a hackeysack...) Argh! ... (Where'd that come from?) Anyway, you know it's in ESB
when Luke is training with Yoda. What you might not immediately notice is there is no manufacturer name before the gear. There is on EVERY other gear, so why not this one? Strangely, there is no manufacturer data in any Star Wars Essential
guide either, so I suppose this is accurate. Decipher's card Portable Fusion Generator
names this as Lardonis Survival Systems MFCR-200 Power Generator. Although most SW:CCG lore was adopted as official Legends material, this is an 'iffy' one to use because no one ever used the "Lardonis" company name again.
Loronar Power Cell:
Loronar was a weapons company that supplier Imperial and Rebel troops during the Galactic Civil War. They made things ranging from battle stations to blasters. I've looked all over for this and haven't found a good visual match for this item. SW weapons are chock full of cylindrical power cells, but none are brown
and none have that tiny thread spool thing on top. Please help if you know what this is.
Merr-Sonn Shield Generator:
As far as I know, the belt-mounted Merr-Sonn Military Mobility Shield does not appear in any Star Wars film. However, pictures of it as a physical prop for the film exist in the SW: New Essential Guide to Weapons and Technology. The board game Imperial Assault
also has a clear image of one being used by a Rodian. Merr-Sonn seems to be the actual (though fictitious) manufacturer. If you know of a scene in the actual films where this prop was used, post it up! I'd love to see where this prop actually ended up.
Merr-Sonn Thermal Detonator:
Merr-Sonn's got a great business model: Make grenades to blow stuff up, and shields to prevent you from being blown up. Good business synergy! In a rare showing of EA/CG-naming-gear-correctly, Merr-Sonn gets 2/2 right. This is a Merr-Sonn Class A Thermal Detonator, used by Leia in Return of the Jedi
. Apparently, the Class A is a highly illegal military weapon with a thermonuclear blast radius of 20 meters. Kinda gives new meaning to the reactions you see in Jabba's Throne Room when Leia whips it out and triggers the deadman switch on it. Watch Boba Fett legitimately fear for his life before he can regain composure, and watch Jabba laugh it off because he faces death every day from threats like this.
These are used at least twice in Empire Strikes Back
scenes, by Luke when he's scanning meteor activity, and later by a Hoth Rebel Soldier when spotting AT-ATs. These are officially Neuro-Saav TD2.3 electrobinoculars according to Essential
Guide books. The visored viewfinders, little gray periscope on top, and red lights all match the prop promotional photo. Fun fact: these were supposed to be able to provide 500x zoom and holo-record anything you saw with them.
Nubian Design Tech:
The Nubian Design Collective made the J-type Naboo starships (such as Amidala's ship) and the T-14 hyperdrive seen in a brief shot in Episode 1. I'm currently scouring images of The Queen's ship for a place where this circular design comes up, but haven't found it yet. It's possible it's an original creation, or the 'Nubian Design' title is unrelated to its actual location in the SW universe. Let me know if you've seen this Tech.
Nubian Security Scanner:
Sienar Holo Projector:
Besides the Thermal Detonator, this is probably the easiest piece of gear to spot in the Star Wars films. In Episode 1, this is called an Imagecaster, and it's made by the SoroSuub Corporation. It gets several prolonged seconds of up-close screentime as Qui-Gon waves it around, so why go through the trouble of renaming it? Moreover, why take the SoroSuub name and move it over to the Keypad, which is specifically not a SoroSuub item? Whoever was in charge of drawing each gear picture undoubtedly had a copy of Essential Guide to ...whatever
open in front of them, so what prevented them from scribbling the correct name on the bottom of each drawing?
Sienar is a company in SW, most notable for the Empire's ships (TIEs especially). Man, they must be rich a million times over from all the TIEs they've sold.
Sienar Technologies was most notable for making ships during the Clone Wars and later the Galactic Empire.
Okay, this might be my favorite one because I was 100% sure it was made up artwork specific to this game. Surprise! It's based off of a Gyrda Keypad prop from Episode 1. Prop was made for the movie, but I have no idea which scene it's in, or if it even made it into a shot. Once again, someone on EA/CG saw the artwork in Star Wars: New Essential Guide to Weapons and Technology
and flipped the image horizontally before copying it. The two large buttons on the side compare perfectly, but the diagonal grooves on the side of the keypad are what cinch the match here. Why leave out the Gyrda name when it's clearly named in the book? No idea. SoroSuub is a large conglomerate, make ships, weapons, technology, so maybe it's a knockoff Gyrda product? Or vice versa?
TaggeCo Holo Lense:
I need someone's help to research this one. TaggeCo is megacorporation in Legends material run by the Tagge family. They made everything from industrial equipment to speederbikes to restaurant chains. I can easily see them making a Holo Lense. Whatever that is. Sounds like a SW version of Google Glasses, but more monocle-ish.
Closest match I've found is the 'Green Efficiency Scanner' from SW: The Old Republic game. Shape match is close, and coloring/extension characteristics are a long shot from the images in SWTOR. Because the artwork from other gear is more precise (only Imperial Stormtroopers are more precise) I think this may be based off something else. Let me know if you've seen a Holo Lense out there.
Zaltin Bacta Gel:
The Zaltin Company manufactures Bacta, along with their rival Xucphra Corp. There's at least 1 comic series and several game sub-plots that revolve around the fragile economic system of having only 2 companies producing arguably the most valuable healing product in the world, but Lucas was all: 'eh, 2 companies producing the universe's supply of bacta seems about right'. The SWGOH artwork is pretty generic, just a tube o' blue. It's pretty similar to the portable bacta canisters you can pick up in the game Jedi Outcast. There's also a similarity in name and image to the Zaltin field bacta tank, in the game Empire at War. Neither one is a perfect match to the gently flared edges of the SWGOH art, but they are the closest ones I can think of at the moment. If you've got a better match, post below.
Yes, I am crazy, but thanks for giving this a read anyway!
Again, feel free to fill in any of the blanks or provide your own suggestions in the comments. If you're a Dev, I'd love to know the stories behind the naming/ artwork choices, or any story regarding behind-the-scene stuff, such as: why are most images horizontally mirrored from their original inspirations? Why were these pieces of gear chosen over much more iconic Star Wars devices like Luke's hand, Stormtroopers' armor, Vader's chestplate, Lobot's earmuffs, or Lando's calculator watch?
And why are some manufacturer names kept the same with Legends source material, but others not? I'd love to know the actual inspirations for these images for any of them I got wrong or couldn't find.