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Plain Ring: Placeholder device to prevent damage to the ring socket when no other ring is in place.

In many videogames, The Hero's quest is a long one fraught with danger. So naturally whatever you're doing, you'll want the best equipment available at any given moment, and so most games will deliver. Your average RPG hero (and their party) will come to wield axes of stone, swing Flaming Swords, carry staffs that allow them to summon the very gods, draw bows crafted by reclusive masters in their field and deck themselves in the hides of legendary beasts and metals dug from far beneath the earth or beyond the stars. Yet, you still need to start somewhere. Enter this trope; the default equipment from the start of the game.

Generally speaking there's one or a few things you can expect from this default equipment:

  • The most basic item you can buy in the first shop you find,
  • The most completely unique (but still useless when you find something else) item you can get in the game. Usually, hanging on to it will get you the Infinity +1 Sword.
  • A few basic Standard RPG Items in your inventory.
  • Default weapon type for the character's class.
  • If there is more than one type of armour slot (outside of just "armour" for example for helms, gloves, accessories) the more advanced ones will be empty. If you start off without a weapon, this may well be the only point in the game where you don't have one equipped.
  • Sometimes the character will start off completely unarmed. In this case the plot (or a handy chest) will provide this. Probably during a tutorial or the Noob Cave.
  • You'll very likely see them used in nearly all promotional material, even though in most cases they'll be replaced with better items within the first hour or two. There are exceptions, of course.

Characters that join later in the game don't count since they always have generic equipment for that level (or even better equipment if you're lucky). Sometimes, at the beginning of the game, you'll be given something better to use before this trope catches up with you. Items that aren't upgraded or replaced as the game goes on and just serve to introduce game mechanics are not this trope, since they only act as an in universe explanation for that ability (so healing items which you'll be able to buy better versions of count, as do equipable items, but a PDA you're given that serves as your pause menu or a pair of gloves that enable Video Game Stealing but are never replaced or upgraded does not).

Compare Emergency Weapon for an early piece of equipment that has some slight advantage (typically being unbreakable or never running out of ammo) to make it a backup rather than just a springboard to later weapons and the equally useless stuff that's Better Off Sold. If the hero starts out on an important quest but still gets no help with getting better equipment then this is With This Herring. Using it may be the aim of a Self-Imposed Challenge. This can overlap with Weapon Jr..

Compare Baseless Mission for Real-Time Strategy games with a campaign mode, where the mission features one or two basic types of troops, possibly a Hero Unit, and lacks a Worker Unit. In Mons games, the equivalent is the Starter Mon.


    open/close all folders 

    Action Adventure 
  • In Cave Story, the Polar Star is the basic gun you get in the Noob Cave. You can exchange it later for one of three superior weapons.

    Beat 'em Up 
  • Hidden Dragon: Legend has a rusted sword you collect in the first area, for fighting two low-tier mook enemies. You use the same sword for a short while until obtaining a much better weapon after completing the level.
  • 9 Monkeys of Shaolin grants you your trusty oak fishing pole as your first weapon for fighting enemies, before it's quickly replaced by the Shaolin Monk Spade two stages later.

    First-Person Shooter 
  • The Borderlands series: In multiple games:
    • In the first game, Borderlands, you get off Marcus's bus with a weapon exclusive to the class you're playing. All of them have negative prefixes like "Rusty", "Broken" or such, and while unique, they're the worst you can get in their respective categories. The first actual starter weapon that will carry you for a little while is the BLR Swatter you're guaranteed at the red loot chest after the first firefight.
    • Lampshaded in Borderlands 2, you have to finish a quest to get your first gun, but then you get this message:
      "You just moved five feet and opened a locker. Later, when you're killing skyscraper-sized monsters with a gun that shoots lightning, you'll look back on this moment and be like, 'heh.'"
    • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel!: Each playable character starts off with two guns with set stats.
    • Borderlands 3: Claptrap gives the player their first gun in preparation for a fight with the Children of the Vault.
  • In Dead Trigger 2, Kyle, the player character, is equipped with a CZ 75 and a Wrench, along with the submachine gun MP5K from the Gunsmith, which can fend off zombies in the earlier stages of the game, but become utterly useless in later stages as the virus mutates and makes zombies stronger and the player unlocks stronger weapons.
  • Eliminate Pro started new employees off with an Auto-Rifle and a suit of Standard armor. While the Auto-Rifle was a decent starting weapon, the Standard armor was worse than useless, as it had a hidden -DEF stat, it couldn't accept most armor platings, it was expensive to upgrade and it was outclassed by every other suit of armor.
  • PlanetSide 2 starts the player off with a basic weapon for each weapon slot, and a shotgun that can be used on most classes. The starting weapons are typically average all-rounders, which players can replace with more specialized alternatives. Vehicles, however, start with almost nothing; the Flash ATV and ANT construction rig don't even come with weapons by default.
  • Team Fortress 2 provides you with "stock" weapons for each class, which are all the most basic and balanced weapons of their types. They're also the only items available if the Item Server is down or your client can't connect to Steam. Their actual usefulness varies; while some are considered useless compared to other items (such as the Bone Saw or Fire Axe), others are dependable and powerful enough that most experienced players never use anything else (like the Stickybomb Launcher or the Minigun). There are also flashier skinned, Festive, Botkiller, and Australium variants of these weapons which otherwise work identically.

    Hack and Slash 
  • The Diablo franchise:
    • Poor Diablo II characters, they don't get any armor, just a class-appropriate weapon: the Barbarian, a hand axe; the Paladin, a short sword, the Amazon, a stack of javelins, the Sorceress, a staff of +1 Fire Bolt, the Necromancer, a wand of +1 Summon Skeleton, the Assassin, a katar, and the Druid, a club. Some of them also get a buckler. It should be noted, however, that these items are flagged as being Starter items, which means they always cost exactly 1 gold to repair. Not that it helps, since you're probably gonna change them for something better before repairing them is a necessity.
    • Diablo III isn't much kinder to its Nephalem. The Barbarian starts off with a handaxe, the Demon Hunter starts off with a hand crossbow, the Crusader starts with a flail and a shield, the Monk starts off with a knuckleduster, the Wizard starts off with a wand, and the Witch Doctor starts off with a ceremonial knife. None of them start off with anything in the way of non-cosmetic armor, but thankfully, this state of affairs doesn't persist for long.

  • Blasphemous II has a variant of this trope. There are only three weapons in the game, each with its own unique traits, elemental affinity and name; at the start of the game, the player chooses one, and the two which aren't chosen will be transported to certain parts of the map, requiring the player to quest to find them.
    • Rugeo al Alba, the Sword, is the "balanced" weapon, with average strike speed and damage. It can parry and counter-attack, and has a Ground Pound attack that, when done from a sufficient height, creates crimson shockwaves that can break special wooden barriers. With an upgrade, it gains a blood meter that charges as it's used to harm enemies, which can trigger a powered-up mode that adds bonus Mystic damage to its strikes. If not selected at the start of the game, it can be found hidden in the Tower of Crowns.
    • Sarmiento & Centella, the Rapier & Dagger, are fast-striking but have the lowest damage. They can also parry, but the player needs to purchase the ability to counter-attack, and the player is encouraged to focus on dodging with their special attack. They use a similar unlockable strike-fueled meter system to the Sword, but when it's full they automatically do bonus Electric damage. They let the player teleport short distances by striking special mirrors. If not selected at the start of the game, they can be found in the Palace of the Embroiderers.
    • Veredicto, the Flail, is slow-striking, but covers a wide arc, does a lot of damage, can potentially hit twice in one strike, and has a higher chance to stun enemies. It's the only weapon that can't block, but has its elemental affinity unlocked by default; the parry button instead causes it to burst into flames, draining Fervor whilst adding Fire damage. It can be used to ring bells that summon temporary platforms and unlock puzzle doors. If not selected at the start of the game, it can be found in the Sacred Entombments.
  • Castlevania:

  • The City of Heroes tutorials give characters two level 1 damage enhancements (basically worthless, intended to teach about slotting and combining enhancements) and two inspirations (actually from the top tier of inspirations that won't start dropping until much later). All are completely unnecessary to pass through the tutorial and some players hold on to them to sell afterward to get started buying decent equipment.
  • EVE Online has the starter Frigates you get at the beginning of the game. They're not the worst ships in the game (that would be the Shuttles), but they are a lot worse than the most basic of the "real" Frigates. If you show up at any NPC space station without a ship (i.e., just in your pod), you'll get a new one free. They can't be sold or recycled.
  • Final Fantasy XIV gives you the basic level 1 weapon of your starting class, and a set of clothes (not armour, not robes, clothes) depending on your race and gender.
  • Kingdom of Loathing gives you starter equipment in line with your class and the game's wacky nature: a club for a seal clubber, a stolen accordion for an accordion thief, etc. The equipment is adequate for the low levels, but you'll ditch it at the first opportunity. However, your starter weapon is later required to craft an ultimate weapon for your class and complete the Nemesis sidequest, and can also be used to craft the weapon portion of the Game-Breaker Smithsness gear. Luckily, the dirt-cheap "chewing gum on a string" item lets you fish up new pieces of starter gear at no turn cost.
  • League of Legends has Doran's Ring, Doran's Shield and Doran's Blade, items available at the shop for 400 or 450 - enough to start with, plus a potion or two - with stats generally helpful for magic, defense, and attack respectively. They're actually fantastic value for money, but severely hampered by the six-item limit. Some players buy nothing but Doran's items to give themselves an early edge before selling them as they get money for more effective items to take their place.
  • In Ragnarok Online you start off with a shirt as your armor and a basic knife, both of which are extremely ineffective. However, doing the tutorials gives you a full set of much better equipment that will easily last you to the point where you can change your job.
  • World of Warcraft:
    • All classes, with the exception of Death Knights (since they start the game at a higher level), start with some basic low-quality items and in many cases a cosmetic shirt. Said shirts used to only be available through character creation (or by buying or trading from another player) until a vendor selling them was added in the game in the first expansion. Death Knight gear is high quality and unique, although there is some higher level gear with the same models.
    • It's possible to obtain copies of the Blood Elf starting gear much later, though ... as in 65-odd levels later, where you run into an "elf enthusiast" in the Howling Fjord who collects their clothing.
  • Wurm Online gives you a quite generous set of gear by the standards of MMOs, balanced by the fact that unless you've exchanged a few bucks for in-game currency, it's going to be a long time before you get anything better. It also can't be upgraded like stuff you make or buy yourself; loss of quality from wear and tear is permanent. On the plus side, unlike everything else, it stays in your inventory after you die.

    Platform Game 
  • In most Ratchet & Clank games, Ratchet will start out with his basic Omniwrench, and some combination of a machine pistol, a bomb-lobbing weapon or a shotgun. Some of these have to be bought, but are usually the cheapest one in the lineup, if not the first.
  • Starbound has the Broken Broadsword, a broadsword that deals very little damage due to being damaged and is quickly outclassed by crafted weapons. Hold onto it until the end of the game and the Baron can repair it for you making it into the Protector's Broadsword, one of the best weapons in the game.
  • In the Treasure Hunter Man series, Treasure Hunter Man 1 and Treasure Hunter Man 2: The sword is the first weapon that can be acquired, and is needed to progress in the game.

  • Noita gives the same starting load-out each attempt: A basic attack wand with Magic Missile; a basic bomb with three charges of Bomb; and a Flask full of water.
  • Nuclear Throne starts most characters off with a revolver of some kind. The two exceptions are Chicken who gets a sword, and Rogue who gets a rifle.
  • The Sealed Ampoule: Irene starts off with 3 Hints of Healing.

  • Bloodborne drops the classes from previous FromSoftware games in favour of just choosing a "background" to determine the Player Character's stats. You begin with the clothes the PC is wearing as armour and nothing else after character creation. After the first checkpoint (or more likely, death; this is a FS game, after all), you choose your starting weapon and firearm.
  • The Boxxy Quest series always starts Catie off with a Byte Staff and a Mooninites T-Shirt, but the headgear is different between games:
  • Crysalis: The game starts with only Mio, wearing a Crysalis bracelet and Cotton cloak.
  • Each of Dark Souls ten classes has their own unique starter set, with some of them having otherwise hard to obtain items. Because of Magikarp Power, a good portion of those items are feasible endgame equipment.
    • Thieves start with the Master Key, which opens certain doors that would otherwise require a key and some that have no proper key. This can also be chosen as a 'gift' by other classes. Other gifts include the unique 'Old Witch's Ring' (which allows you to talk to the Daughter of Chaos that leads the Chaos Covenant), a ring that grants a small increase in HP, and the Pendant that does absolutely nothing.
  • Dragon Age: Inquisition makes your acquisition of starter weapons a plot point in itself. When you gain control of the future Inquisitor, they are unarmed and, in fact, being escorted under guard as a suspected mass-murderer. As you come under attack by demons, however, your armed escort, Cassandra, instructs you to stay back while she deals with them. At this point, you have no choice but to grab a weapon from the nearby pile (conveniently matching the skills you picked at character creation) and help her out. As soon as that's over, Cassandra demands that you drop it again, but a bit of reasoning makes her stop being so Lawful Stupid.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • Daggerfall will give you some starting equipment based on the choices you made during character generation. If you answered one particular question a certain way, you'll receive an Ebony Dagger as part of your starting equipment. Ebony is the second best crafting material in the entire game.
    • Morrowind is pretty stingy in this regard, giving you only the common clothes on your back and allowing you to pick up an Iron Dagger, an Apprentice Lockpick, and a ring enchanted with a minor healing spell during character generation. This is all you'll get for free to start out. Anything else will need to be bought or found out in the world.
    • Oblivion has the "pick up starting equipment through the tutorial" version. The "rusted iron" and "rough leather" (essentially an even worse version of the basic Iron and Leather items) equipment from the tutorial dungeon can't be found anywhere else. You also start off equipped with the unique "wrist irons" item, which are useful since they're weightless and can be enchanted later.
    • Skyrim continues the "pick up starting equipment through the tutorial" trend. It offers a slightly better variety and quality of equipment, and at a few points, the NPC you chose to side with will hand you items, like a bow.
  • The Fallout series:
    • Fallout gave starting equipment based on whatever skills you had tagged; A pistol was standard, but knives for melee skills, brass knuckledusters for unarmed, medical kits for first aid, etc.
    • Fallout 2 sticks you with nothing but a Vault Suit, Pipboy, a spear, a knife, and a few bags of healing powder. The only thing that keeps this from being With This Herring is that if you take the time to look around the village, they really are giving you the best stuff they have (you can upgrade your spear, but this requires you to gather the materials needed to do so and the quest-giver will perform the upgrade for free once you've got them).
    • In Fallout 3 you get a BB gun in the tutorial. When the game starts proper you're also given a basic pistol and can pick up the aformentioned BB Gun and a baseball bat (if you prefer melee weapons) from your room before you leave.
    • Fallout: New Vegas would give you either a pistol or a laser pistol depending on whether your guns or energy weapons skill was higher. Downloadable Content adds a mix of themed starting equipment, like a machete and throwing spears and/or a Disc-One Nuke in the form of a unique (albeit uniquely weak) 40mm grenade launcher.
    • Fallout 4 gives you a Security Baton for melee and the Overseer's 10mm pistol during your escape from Vault 111. You can also get your hands on a pipe-gun and a tire iron while exploring Sanctuary.
  • Fantasy Life has every single player start with basic street clothes and dagger. Getting started in each job will grant the player a starting uniform. The street clothes are a staple of both the clothing shop in the First Town and the tailor job, but the starting uniform can only be purchased in the semi-secret shop corresponding to each job.
  • The Final Fantasy series;
    • Final Fantasy IV Cecil's dark knight gear that he has when you start the game is the weakest you can get as well as not being bought or found anywhere. It actually becomes 100% useless in the game after he class changes and gets completely different set of starting equipment. (If you don't remove your previous equipment before the class change your old stuff is gone forever.)
    • Final Fantasy VII gives each character their signature weapon as their starting equipment. They're all the weakest equipment in the game, but in the case of Cloud and Barret, they can't be sold since they're the iconic weapon for that character (and thus appear in cutscenes).
    • Final Fantasy IX plays this largely straight, but also includes one exception to the rule. As with most of the FF games, your starting weapons are the weakest in the game and you're encouraged to keep buying the next tier. There's even a "synthesis" mechanism, where you can combine certain pieces of old equipment to make new, more powerful pieces. But then, about two-thirds into the game, you travel to a topsy-turvy dungeon where everything is upside-down—including your weapons' attack values. In this dungeon, the higher the attack power, the weaker your attacks. You can find every character's second-weakest weapon in chests throughout the dungeon, but the only way to have the most powerful weapons for that dungeon is to bring along your starting equipment, which you probably sold or synthesized hours ago.
    • Final Fantasy X Tidus is given a long sword before his first battle. This weapon has 0 customization slots and no bonuses, meaning that every subsequent weapon for him is better. While you can make a long sword via drops and customization it will always have 1 slot rather than 0.
      • Incidentally, the weapon was a gift from his old man. That the game actually encourages you to drop it as soon as possible gives you an idea what kind of relationship Father and Son have.
    • In Final Fantasy XII Vaan and Basch's default swords cannot be bought or found. Vaan's can be dropped by Omega Mark XII.
  • Kingdom Hearts: The Kingdom Key serves as this in games focused on Sora. Canonically, it's his personal keyblade, much like how Way to the Dawn is Riku's keyblade and Destiny's Embrace is Kairi's. Roxas, being Sora's Nobody, also has it as his default weapon in Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days, though he becomes a dual wielder of Oathkeeper and Oblivion later on.
  • In For the King, each character starts out with the beginner weapon for their class/background (a hammer for the Blacksmith, a bow for the Hunter, a spell book for the Scholar, and so on), along with one or two other items also determined by their class/background. The starter weapons are not available at any other point in the game, and usually have slightly worse stats than the most basic weapon of that type available in markets and item drops. In the lower difficulty levels, each character will also be given a few extra generic items (healing herbs, etc.).
  • Girlfriend Rescue:
    • Dan starts off wielding a Broken Bottle and wearing a Fighting Bandana, Thick Shirt, and carrying his Letters to Laura.
    • Joy starts off wielding a Aerosol Bomb and wearing Sexy Shoes.
    • Katia starts with no weapon, making her unable to deal damage until she gets one and, wears a Thick Shirt and some City Shoes.
    • Cookie the Bullfrog starts off wields his tongue, although he can equip certain clothing if provided, such as a Fighting Bandana.
  • The player begins the original Knights of the Old Republic on their bed, in their underwear. Basic gear (including a gun, a sword, some clothes, and a couple of medpacs) is stashed in your locker, as you would expect.
  • Lords of the Fallen has different starting equipment for each of the three classes. You can also find each set early on in Keystone.
  • The Mass Effect series:
    • In Mass Effect, the player is dropped off the Normandy in the first level with a set of four level 1 weapons and armor for each party member. Each other recruited party member will have exactly the same equipment, regardless of their level or where they are encountered.
    • In Mass Effect 2, Shepard wakes up sans weapon and armor in a medical lab and has to grab them from a nearby locker (soon after, you also pick up your first heavy weapon, a grenade launcher); after the prologue is over, they pick up a full set of guns before the first proper mission.
    • Mass Effect 3: Anderson hands you your first pistol when things go wrong at your trial, and you pick up the rest over the course of Priority: Mars. (In the latter case, it's actually possible for some of the basic guns to be lost, although it's not hard to find replacements.)
  • In Neverwinter Nights 2, every class starts with nothing but basic unenchanted armor of the heaviest type a character of this class can equip of level 1. The Favored Soul class, added in Mask of the Betrayer but available for the vanilla campaign too, starts with a unique, fancy-looking suit of armor named "Favored Soul's Outfit"... which has exactly the same stats as regular chainmail, and thus quickly gets obsolete.
  • The Of Pen and Paper series:
    • Knights of Pen and Paper: Based on Class, and but they don't have any statistical benefit, just to ensure the players are not performing a Full-Frontal Assault. For example, Clerics start with a Mace and Robe.
    • Knights of Pen and Paper 2: Playing the Tutorial battle gives a Carrot, but can be skipped, which exchanges that for having no damage for the first Main Quest fight.
  • Oracle of Askigaga: Each character gets a set:
    • Hiroji Askigaga starts off with a Saber and Leather Armor.
    • Oharu Ishihara starts off with a Iron Spear and Ring Mail.
  • The Other: Rosie's Road of Love: Rosie starts the game with, a Small Dagger, a Traveller's Coat and Shoes, and Item and Monster Compendiums, called Item and Monster Book.
  • Since the player character in Path of Exile has been, well, exiled, you start by getting tossed off the ship transporting you to Wraeclast and washing up on the beach with one weapon and no armor. The Marauder starts with a club, the Templar with a scepter, the Witch with a wand, the Shadow with a knife, the Ranger with a bow, and the Duelist with a sword. You get your first active skill as a drop from the first monster you encounter, you find a support gem halfway through the zone, and you get another skill as a quest reward for killing the first boss and reaching town.
  • Persona games generally start a character off with their school uniform or other everyday clothes and a weak (possibly improvised) weapon scrounged up somewhere - stolen from a school club, provided by your mysterious benefactors, whatever:
    • The original Persona has the characters fight through the first dungeon using whatever they can find in a standard hospital room (aside from the one guy carrying an axe).
    • Persona 4, starts you out with a cheap golf club Yosuke picked up after the replica katana he first offered got confiscated by the cops.
    • Persona 5 invokes. When the characters awaken to their Personas, not only are they granted their outfits, but also their weapons of choice. The items' descriptions even mention them manifesting in response to awakening their personas.
  • Planescape: Torment starts you off with a scalpel stolen from a nearby table and nothing else, while your first party member is a floating skull who only has the teeth he originally died with. Fortunately you can replace those very soon with a little scrounging and some side quests (yes, even the teeth).
  • The starter Pokémon count in that you can't find them anywhere else and they're all pretty basic for their types, though their final forms tend to be very powerful. All the games also start you off with some of the most basic type of Pokeball (although you'll be buying them for a while at least anyway) and a Potion (which needs to be withdrawn from the player's item storage PC in some games).
  • Prayer of the Faithless: Aeyr starts off the game wielding Training Blade and Bandages as his gauntlet.
  • Remnants of Isolation: Different for each character:
    • Melchior starts off with the Ancestral Weapon of his Trusty Axe.
    • Celesta doesn't get a weapon until after the first crafting station where she picks up a Steel Pipe.
  • Rengoku: Without weapons, the player can still be a Bare-Fisted Monk, just with very low attack and defense.
  • Rune Factory 3 has a slight twist. When you have your first battle, a weaponsmith lets you choose which starter weapon you get.
  • Soma Spirits: Heart starts off with his Joy Baton, and gets a Spirit Guard and Bronze Ring before leaving his house, but it's not required to put it on to leave.
  • The first (real) weapon you start out with in Star Ocean: Till the End of Time is a simple sword synthesized from the rescue pod's computer, which is necessary because you crash-landed in a backwater planet, and convenient for Fayt since he knows how to swing it around by playing virtual games. The actual first weapon you get is a Metal Pipe, an improvised weapon which Fayt picked up to defend himself from enemy drones. One of the Battle Trophies requires you to beat the final boss with said Metal Pipe, and the second-to-last Superboss, a feat made possible thanks to the game's Synthesis system.
  • Tales of Symphonia: Lloyd's starting weapon is a pair of wooden swords. You get a title if you don't swap them out until about halfway through the game.
  • Transistor: The game starts off with the Crash() and Breach() Functions equipped.
  • Undertale plays with this trope, just like it does with every other one found in RPGs. Your starting equipment consists of a stick and a bandage, and while they are and remain the weakest combat gear in the game, the bandage, once taken off, becomes a one-time consumable item that restores Hit Points (as a bandage should), while the stick turns out to be a recurring quest item that can be used to resolve many battles non-violently—particularly when fighting canines. Fridge Brilliance all around.
  • The Xenoblade series:
    • The first game, Xenoblade Chronicles 1, starts Shulk off with the Scrap Sword. The item's description pretty much admits it's a piece of crap he put together himself just to fend off any aggressive wildlife, and it gets replaced with the Monado before long.
    • Xenoblade Chronicles 2 starts Rex off with some rusted-out sword he uses to fend off any aggressive wildlife he manages to pull up in his salvaging attempts, and it's replaced with Pyra's Aegis Sword before long.
    • Xenoblade Chronicles X gives Rook a set of basic equipment every time s/he changes class out of thin air if there's nothing suitable in his/her inventory. This isn't worth trying to exploit, though - not only are these bottom-tier, bog-standard weapons obsolete by the end of the tutorial, they don't sell for much.

    Shoot 'em Up 
  • Cube Colossus: The game starts with being immediately thrown into a battle, so there needs to be a ship to battle with, and equipped weapons. The starting ship is AMU-01, and it's equipped with the GA-LM Lightknife, which is described:

    Simulation Game 
  • Princess Maker 3: The "Retired Knight" job for the father starts the game off with 1500 G.

  • BattleTech
    • The story campaign starts the player with a small but useful array of starter equipment and crew. You have one each of the Gunnery, Guts, and Tactics-trained pilots as your default lance, with a backup pilot with a lead on Piloting skills. Similarly, you have four fairly decent 'Mechs in your starting lance, which includes three Jack of All Stats designs (the Vindicator, the Blackjack, and the Shadow Hawk) and one high speed recon unit (the Spider). The game anticipates you'll get the Spider wrecked, and gives you a dinky but usable backup Locust 'Mech, just in case.
    • The free-play career mode is considerably less generous. Players will have to start with a much smaller weight range of units (often with no medium 'Mechs at all) and their starting pilots will generally have skill blocks of 9 or 10. For reference, the lowest possible skill block for starting pilots is 8. Good luck getting through the Early Game Hell if you're playing on the higher difficulties.
  • Newly created characters in the Disgaea series always have the weakest weapon of the type their class uses (or one of them) and no armour. Some games in the series don't even give you that, although story characters always have decent items equipped.
    • Usually this is restricted to the storyline characters. However, 2 and 3 both provided the main character with some hirelings at the start of a new game, and they will be decently equipped. DLC characters will sometimes also be carrying equipment once you recruit them, and said equipment will scale, depending on what point you recruit them.
  • LiEat: In the first game:
    • Leo: Knife, Liar, Long Red Coat, Diamond Ornaments
    • Efina: Small Cookie, Blue Dress, Blue Earmuffs
  • The default (and until quite late in the development process only) starting scenario for Rimworld dropped your characters off somewhere in the wilderness in the clothes they stood up in with one weapon each, a very small amount of food and medical supplies and some raw materials for construction and crafting.
  • Starcraft:
    • In the first game, the Terran campaign begins with just basic Marines and SCVs, the Zerg campaign with Zerglings, Hydralisks, and support units, and the Protoss with a handful of Zealots.
    • Wings of Liberty: the first three missions give you exactly one offensive unit (the Marine), in addition to introducing workers, Medics, and the various features of your base.
    • Heart of the Swarm follows suit. The first three missions use the Zergling as their sole offensive unit aside from Kerrigan and Raynor (and the Queens, which have a modest ability to defend themselves but are mostly support).
  • In XCOM your first base starts with a little bit of almost everything you can purchase at the beginning. Depending on your style of play either much or all of it is near-useless. Fortunately, the starting enemies are so weak, you can survive.

    Third-Person Shooter 
  • Gundam Breaker is usually good with starting players off an at-least usable Mobile Suit, though 3 gave players the rough equivalent of a Mook Mobile, starting them with a hodgepodge combination of a GM III and G-3 Gundam, along with a GN Sword III and a beam machinegun. Unfortunately, in spite of using some parts from a legitimate Gundam or two, the overall performance is actually little better than a standard RGM-79 GM, and most players will have started upgrading to their own custom build (or buying a full kit in the shop) within a few missions.
  • Splatoon:
    • Every game, following the tutorial, gives the player a Splattershot Jr. as the starting weapon. Said Splattershot Jr. will always come with a kit featuring Splat Bombs for the sub-weapon and some sort of team-benefitting shield as a defensive special weapon (Bubbler in 1, Ink Armor in 2, and Big Bubbler in 3). Meanwhile, the starting gear consists of a White Headband with the Ink Recovery ability (faster reloading), a Basic Tee with Quick Respawn (faster respawning), and some Cream Basics shoes with Special Saver (reduces how much your special gauge decreases after getting splatted). In 3, the gear is different to match the aestheticsnote , but the abilities are the same.
    • After completing 2's Octo Expansion, when the player switches over to the Octoling, the Octoling starts with the Fresh Octo Tee with Ink Saver (reduces ink consumption of main weapons).
  • In Warframe, new players are given a choice of three Warframes (Excalibur, Volt, and Mag), a sword/staff/powerfist, secondary one-handed weapon(s) and a primary two-handed weapon. The weapons are all "MK1" variants, which are weaker than the standard versions, while the Warframes are the normal versions. During the first mission, players unlock "Damaged" versions of some vital weapon and warframe mods, which are cheaper to equip but cannot be upgraded as much as the normal mods acquired through gameplay.

    Wide Open Sandbox 
  • Elite Dangerous starts the player off at Trevithick Dock in LHS 3447 with a basic Sidewinder starship, 2 pulse lasers and 1000 credits to their name. Kickstarter supporters gain access to Multiple Game Openings, such as a callback to the original Elite with a stripped down Cobra Mk3 and 100 credits. Dying and not having enough money for the 5% ship insurance fee will dump you back in the Sidewinder.
  • Escape Velocity: All three games started the player off in that game's iteration of the Shuttle ship with its default configuration (nothing in Classic's case, a single basic energy weapon in Override and Nova) and some money. From Nova on, the engine had the capability of allowing the player to select different starting "characters" with potentially different starting locations, ship and money (or even story), but the unmodded game didn't use it.
  • From the Depths's "Quest for Neter" campaign starts the player out with a small amount of resources, an extremely primitive and inefficient motorboat, and a basic fortress with some resource extractors, a radar array, and repair tentacles.
  • Minecraft: Turning on the bonus chest option when creating a world spawns a chest surrounded by torches next to the player which is filled with a random assortment of base equipment and resources. This can include wood, low-level tools, a small amount of food, some saplings, and crop seeds.
  • Mount & Blade starts you with the bare minimum of equipment to see you through the starter quest to rescue a merchant's brother. This usually consists of a broken melee weapon, raggedy armor (or sometimes just clothes, which offer no protection), possibly a shield or a ranged weapon, a worn out nag of a horse, and a backpack of hard-smoked fish to subsist on. It's rather telling that you can get better equipment from the bottom tier trash Mooks like Looters.
  • The claws in both of the [PROTOTYPE] games are the first ability you'll gain, and become redundant pretty much as soon as you unlock the next one. They do look cool though.
  • In Red Dead Redemption II, you start the game with a trusty Cattleman Revolver, a Carbine Repeater rifle, and a knife. Shortly into the first chapter, you will have the means to acquire a Sawed-Off Shotgun, a Double-Barrel Shotgun, and a bow and arrows.
  • In Space Engineers, each game world starts you off with different equipment, though each gives you the basic tools (a welder, grinder, and drill). The "Crashed Red Ship" start, for example, spawns you in a partially wrecked ship; early versions required you to cannibalize the ship to build refineries and other essential equipment, though the modern version has most equipment intact.
  • TerraTech: Players start out with incredibly weak Little Trekker wheels and a low-powered ZK-74 machine gun, which are good enough to gather a few blocks but useless compared even to other early-game equipment.
  • Most newly-created characters in Terraria start out with, at minimum, a shortsword, pickaxe, and axe, all being made out of copper. Journey Mode characters instead receive the Iron variants of those tools, as well as an Iron Hammer, a Finch Staff, Torches, Rope, a Magic Mirror, a Grappling Hook, and Fledgling Wings.
  • In the X-Universe series, each game has Multiple Game Openings which change your starting equipment. Typically, the game gives you either a M5 Scout starship or a TS Transport-Small, a small amount of money, and a few weapons. The first game, X: Beyond the Frontier was infamous for its pathetic starting equipment - no weapons, next to no shields, and most annoyingly, no singularity engine time accelerator to make the long travel times bearable. Later games offer more starting equipment, such as X3: Terran Conflict having two starts with a M4+ heavy interceptor and a good array of weapons.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Anima: Beyond Fantasy gives depending of your social class equipment plus more or less money, the highest ones —high nobility and burguesy, which must be purchased on character creation, offering way more gear which often include even very expensive weapons and armor and other luxurious stuff as fine clothes, thoroughbred horses, etc. Given the low emphasis of the game on magic objects, said gear is able to support a character for many levels.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • Most editions give player characters a certain amount of starting money and leave players to shop from the equipment lists. At low levels, only mundane gear and the most minor of magic items will be accessible — magic items in particular are something they'll be expected to find or otherwise "earn" later.
    • 5th Edition: Characters receive starting gear based on their class and background (with a few options), plus a small amount of starting money to shop. This generally accounts for basic weapons, armor, spellcasting paraphernalia, travel gear, and personal trinkets. As 5th Edition places less emphasis on loading up characters with magical items, the starting gear can quite reasonably support a character for multiple levels.
  • Hero Realms has the player start with low powered Dagger and Shortsword cards, and a low-paying Ruby and a handful of Gold. Character Decks provide different Weapons based on Class. For example, the Thief has Throwing Daggers: not very useful alone, but when used with other Throwing Daggers does additional damage.
  • Ironclaw elected to give its various classes 'starting kits' of equipment in its second build to ensure that characters would start off with something that was at least useful for most of the possible builds for that class. The previous editions allowed players to freely buy equipment with starting funds, often leading to inexperienced players buying gear they couldn't actually use because of the vagaries of the weight and skill systems, so the starting kit system at least ensured that new players wouldn't be completely ill-equipped for the tasks at hand.
  • The One Ring: An adventurer starts with one of every weapon type they're trained in (including a weightless backup dagger), whatever armour and shield the player wants, and Adventuring Gear that's assumed to have whatever makes sense for them to bring on their travels. Equipment is limited by Encumbrance and by XP-dependent Virtues and Rewards, not generally by shopping.
  • In Pathfinder, firearms are extremely expensive, difficult to use, and cannot be crafted with the Craft skill. As such, the Gunslinger class receives a free "battered firearm" at character creation so that they can actually use a gun without having to wait multiple levels to buy one first. This weapon is unreliable in the hands of other characters, worthless if sold, and the gunslinger can upgrade it into a masterwork weapon (paying only the cost of the masterwork bonus) instead of needing a new firearm to replace it.
  • Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay: Each basic and advanced Career has a list of Trappings describing its standard (or not-so-standard) equipment. Characters begin play with their starting career's trappings, plus basic travel gear and a bit of gold.

Alternative Title(s): Starting Equipment