A Path to Steam
Defaults: IQ-5 or Sleight of Hand-3.
This is the skill of concealing items on your person or on other people (usually with their cooperation). An item’s size and shape govern its concealability. Some examples:
’+4: A BB-sized jewel, a postage stamp.
’+3: A pea-sized jewel.
’+2: One lockpick, a huge jewel, a dime, a TL9+ computer disk, a letter.
’+1: A set of lockpicks, a silver dollar.
0: A TL8 floppy disk or CD, without case.
-1: A dagger, a slingshot, the tiniest handgun or grenade.
-2: An average handgun (e.g., a Luger), a grenade, a large knife.
-3: A submachine gun, a shortsword, a short carbine.
-4: A broadsword, an assault rifle.
-5: A bastard sword, a battle rifle.
-6: A crossbow, a heavy sniper rifle.
Things that move or make noise give an additional -1 or more to skill.
Clothing also modifies effective skill. A Carmelite nun in full habit (+5 to skill) could conceal a bazooka or a battle-axe from an eyeball search. A Las Vegas showgirl in costume (-5 to skill) would have trouble hiding even a dagger. Of course, the showgirl might escape search entirely (unless the guards were bored) because “She obviously couldn’t hide anything in that outfit!” Full nudity is -7 to skill.
A proper concealment holster helps conceal a weapon; use the equipment modifiers on p. 345. Clothing designed specifically to hide things gives a bonus of up to +4.
To spot a concealed item, roll a Quick Contest of Search skill vs. Holdout. Search defaults to Perception-5 if you haven’t studied it. See Search (p. 219) for additional rules.