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Jim Tate was a highly successful weapons engineer at Wayne-Powers until he was fired. The pressure to provide for his family compelled Tate to commit robberies and become Armory.
A former Special Forces operative, Jim Tate later acquired advanced degrees in electronics and engineering, with which he made an impressive career as a light weapons designer. Employed by Wayne-Powers, he made a good living in his life. At some point, he met Lorraine, with whom he fell in love and married. Jim always provided his wife and stepson Jared with the best. Though successful, he was financially irresponsible; With a propensity for heavy spending he lavished his family, purchasing two cars for his son, extensive jewelry for his wife, remodeling a large house for his family. With this over extended spending habits he apparently got left with no significant amount of reserve savings.
At one point Paxton Powers downsized his division, allegedly to move the light weapons division into new areas. However, Tate accused Powers of firing him to save money. He got a modest severance package and looked for a job anywhere else, but was turned down everywhere he applied. His last resort was Istivan Hegedesh from ForceTech, who couldn't afford to hire him, but expressed interest in illegally purchasing a sonic wave device of Tate's design. It is implied that Hedgesh was representing Middle Eastern terrorists.
Having run out of legitimate alternatives, Tate donned a combat suit equipped with an array of weapons and broke into Wayne-Powers to steal the prototype of the weapon which he designed, so he could refine that design. He managed to elude the GPD, but he was intercepted by Batman. However, Tate's sophisticated weaponry overpowered the hero, and allowed him to flee. Tate's exploit caused a big impact on the Web and people dubbed him the "Human Armory".
During the subsequent week, he set up a workshop at home and dove into work. He became unusually distant from his family, which made Terry suspicious of him. When Armory broke into Gotham Industrial Electronics, Batman followed and intercepted him once again. This time, Armory used an electromagnetic discharge to disable the Batsuit and tried to ram him. After failing, he targeted Batman with a bazooka. Batman dodged his assaults, but Armory still managed to escape.
When Tate was delivering the weapon prototype to Hegedesh, he was confronted by Jared, who had discovered the access code to Jim's workshop scratched into the inside of his father's sock drawer. Upon entering his stepfather's workshop, Jared realized Jim's involvement in the robberies. The commotion drew Lorraine too, and Jim could no longer hide the truth about his criminal activities. Batman interrupted the family feud and Hegedesh took him on. Hegedesh subdued Batman with the sonic wave weapon, but Tate foiled him and saved Batman's life.
Tate gave himself up and cooperated fully with the authorities, and because of his act of redemption, he received a lenient prison sentence.
Armory was a very competent thief who used a wide range of non-lethal weapons, which allowed him to elude Batman on two consecutive occasions. These included:
- a grenade that produced an impassable force field
- a TASER pistol
- a rifle that shot bursts of adhesive liquid that solidified within seconds
- an electromagnetic pulse blaster that disabled electronic devices.
- a bazooka
His van was also capable of changing its external color to provide camouflage.
Armory didn't possess any special powers or abilities, but as a former Special Forces operative, he was in top physical form and possessed above-average martial arts skills.
- Goodman, Robert (writer) & Lukic, Butch (director) (May 1, 1999). "Spellbound". Batman Beyond. Season 1. Episode 10 (airdate). Episode 9 (production). Kids WB!.
- McCann, John P. (writer) & Lim, Kyung-Won (director) (March 11, 2000). "Armory". Batman Beyond. Season 2. Episode 17 (airdate). Episode 31 (production). Kids WB!.