I tend to spend most of my income as I get it. If it is 10-150 creds, I buy 'small gear upgrades' for everyone. If it is more than 160 creds I start buying fully kitted out new gangers/champions (meaning I bring them up to the 'current standard' of armor/wargear my other fighters of the same type have).
My 'early campaign' buying priority list (As Goliaths):
1. Rogue Doc Hanger-on.
2. Armored undersuits and Stim stashes for Leader and Champs (and now with BoJ Armored Overlays).
2. Smoke grenades (especially for any Grenade launcher in the gang, mainly to have a 4+ Ammo type to more easily reload it if it runs out of ammo).
3. 2 Lasguns+Hotshot packs for a couple of un-experienced gangers.
After the first 2 games my starting gang has usually gotten these first few items, after which I start prioritising shopping based on the random advancements of the gangers:
- If a ganger gets Bs increase they get the Grenade launcher or a Bolter+Telescopic sight (to become the dedicated fire support)
- If a ganger gets a M increase they get a Combat shotgun+Rad shells or Firestorm ammo (to become a 'running flamer').
- If a ganger gets a T increase they get Armored undersuit, Stim stash and a second close combat weapon, usually a Chainsword (to become a frontline Tank).
- If a ganger gets a Cool advance he'll get a Long Rifle+Infra red sight (more likely to pass Cool check to target far away enemies).
- When gangers advance and start 'specialising' in a weapon style, I get new fresh gangers, whom get passed down the Hotshot Lasguns (and if the gang has a high income they might even get Las projectors for those guns).
- My first 2-3 Champions in the gang always spend their first 12 XPs to get +2 Movement and are always Melee focused, so for them I mainly buy extra defenses (with BoJ there are Ablative overlays and Scrap shields, otherwise Respirators if I'm facing Gas weapons) and Stim stashes. After they got to max Movement, I generally advance their Ws so they can upgrade to fancier Melee weapons.
- I start getting ranged dedicated Champions from the 4th onward, later in the campaign, when I manage to get 250-300 credits of income in 1 game (with the new Rackets and Intrigues from BoJ that might happen earlier in the campaign than I'm used to) and I spend the bulk to get the new Champ with a Master crafted Special weapon (Plasma or Meltagun) with all the appropriate attachments to maximise the + to hit (Telescopic sight and Photo goggles for Plasma, Infra red sight + Las projector on the Meltagun).
Usually armour for the leader and champs. Used to be mesh + undersuit, but there's a lot more variety available now. Armourweave is like slightly better mesh, ablative overlays are probably better for the early campaign than an undersuit is, it's reasonable to save for something like carapace because it should only take 1-2 games, etc.
I think hands down the "best" items would be Uphive Raiments and a Cred Sniffer, though. The longer you have those items on your roster the more they ultimately pay out.
Playing Delaque, I first bought hotshot laspacks for some of my dudes, otherwise grenades and armor for the characters as many others have, followed by a few equipment gimmicks like a grapple launcher for my sniper, some respirators because of the abundance of gas attacks in our campaign and photo goggles because somebody (usually me) keeps turning off the lights.
Because of all that I tended to stick closely to my house list so far, might upgrade a few gangers with boltguns at some point, but since that's hard to convert and I'm having a lot of fun with web weaponry I'm holding off on that.
Future ideas are a plasma gun for one of my champs, and I'm setting a few credits aside with each earning to buy a laser cannon late in the campaign. Is that reasonable or smart? Probably not. Will I still do it? Oh yes.