Friday, May 14, 2010

On Thieves

This post is Open Game Content

The thief relies on cunning to win the day. Thieves are middling warriors and have no magical abilities, but they are hard to kill and train themselves in a wide array of skills useful to adventurers.

Prime Attribute: Dexterity, 13+ (+5% experience)

Hit Dice: 1d6 (Gains 2 hp/level after 9th level.)

Armor/Shield Permitted: Leather, padded and shields.

Weapons Permitted: Club, dagger, dart, hand axe, javelin, light crossbow, maces, short bow, short sword, sling, staff.

BACK STAB (1st): A thief normally avoids face-to-face combat if possible, preferring instead to use stealth to catch an opponent unaware. A thief able to attack an unaware opponent from the rear gains a bonus to hit and damage. To catch an opponent unaware, a thief must make a successful move silently check to sneak up behind the foe, or make a successful hide check while behind the opponent. A thief that succeeds can make a back stab at a +4 bonus to hit. A successful hit inflicts double normal damage.

As the thief gains experience, the damage inflicted increases. At fifth level, a back stab deals triple damage, and at ninth level a back stab inflicts quadruple damage.

DECIPHER SCRIPT (1st): Thieves can decipher writings by making a successful saving throw. This includes unfamiliar languages, codes and incomplete messages. Thieves can also use this ability to decipher and then cast spells from arcane scrolls, though the saving throw to do so is made at a -10 penalty.

THIEVERY (1st): A thief’s training makes them particularly adept at dungeon delving. Thieves successfully listen at doors and find secret doors (and hidden traps) as well as elves (2 in 6 and 4 in 6 chance respectively), and can find pits and traps as well as a dwarf (1 in 6 chance of just noticing, 3 in 6 chance if searching).

Moreover, thieves have the following unique abilities: Hiding in shadows, moving silently, climbing sheer surfaces, picking pockets (and other acts of legerdemain) and picking locks (with a set of burglar's tools, which cost 25 gp). Use of these abilities requires the thief to succeed at a saving throw (in essence, making a saving throw to avoid failure). Non-thieves have a 1 in 6 chance of successfully performing these abilities.

Hiding in Shadows: Hiding in shadows requires shadows, of course, and is as effective as the invisibility spell, except that the thief cannot move while hiding in shadows.

Moving Silently: This means moving without making any sound at all. A thief moving silently and scouting ahead of a party can avoid an encounter entirely if his opponents are surprised.

Climb Sheer Surfaces: This means surfaces with no, or almost no, hand or toe holds. The Referee might require multiple saving throws for long climbs, and might regard failure as merely "no progress" or actual falling.

THIEVES’ CANT (1st): Thieves often use a street language known only to those in the “trade”. Code words, hand signals, demeanor, and other signs comprise the language of thieves’ cant and can be used to convey complex ideas. The language may vary to some degree both geographically and culturally, making cants unique to each region, city, and even within a city.

LevelExperienceHit DiceAttackSaveTitle
9200,0009+46Master Thief
10320,000+2 hp+55Master Thief
11440,000+4 hp+54Master Thief
12560,000+6 hp+63Master Thief

Assassin is next ...


  1. Scoundrel and Rapscallion. Makes you want to start using name levels!

  2. Now we know what level the Artful Dodger was!

  3. Yeah, dodger was a reference to the Artful Dodger. Scoundrel was a tip of the hat to H. Solo. The rest are just cool words - heck, my love of words is the main reason I do the level titles. I'm still trying to justify writing up a she-devil class because of all the great synonyms for fierce women.


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