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TSR 2111 PHBR2 The Complete Thief's Handbook

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Published by professor_smth, 2019-11-26 00:51:45

TSR 2111 PHBR2 The Complete Thief's Handbook

TSR 2111 PHBR2 The Complete Thief's Handbook

Player’s Handbook Rules Supplement

The
Complete

ef’s

Handbook

Introduction ........................ 4 'hug . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4.3 Centralist . . . . .......64
. . . . . .64
The Purpose of the Complete Thief's ioubleshooter . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Cohesive . . . . . . .
Fractionated . . . .
Handbook ......................... 4 Lecording Kits on the Character Sheet . .44 . . . . .64
. . . . .65
The Role of the Thief . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4. 'hief Types and Multi-Class Characters .45 Oppositional . . . . . . . .65
Anarchic . . . . . . .
Thieves and the Law. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 'hief Types and Dual-Class Chara Complex/Mix . . . . . . . . . . .65

.....Chapter 1: Role-Playing Thieves 7 lreating New Kits . . . . . . . . . . . . . hild Leaders . . . . . . . . . . . . .65

Setting............................... 7 .he Thief Kit Creation Sheet . . . . Guildmaster . . . . . . . . .65
Social Background .................... 7 -he "Lone Wolf: Unique Thieves . . . . . .46
Council . . . . . . . . . . . . .65
Motivation ........................... 8 'hief Kit Creation Sheet . . . . . . . . . . . . .65
Sample Archetypes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1.0 Democracy . . . . .
Demihumans ........................ 12 Bluehand Ajathar. . . . . .65
Leaderless. . . . . .
idventure Suggestion Complex/Mix . . . . . . .65

Other Nonhuman Races . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 Jossary of Thief S1 Special . . . . . . . . . . . . .66

Demihumans, Cities, and Guilds . . . . . . .14 .........Ihapter 4: Thieves' Guild 51 kild Rulership . . . . . . . . . . . .66

Code of the Professional . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Yhat is a Thieves' Guild Anyway Weak/Strong . . . . . . .. . . . .66
....16 Cruel/Just . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . .Chapter 2: Proficiencies leveloping the Thieves' Guild . . . . . . . . .51 . . . . .66
. . . . .16
New Proficiencies . . . . . . . . . . . . .16 lenefits of Guild Membership Despotic/Populist . . . . . . . . . . . . . .66 {
Alertness. . . . . . . . . . . . . .16
lesigning a Thieves' Guild . . . . . . . .67 I
Animal Noise. . . . . . . . . .67
. . . . .52 Using the Tables . . . . . . .
Fencing ..................... Guild Background . . . . . . . . . .67
Begging . . . . . . . . . . . .17 . . . . .67
Boating . . . . . . . Social Alignment.......
. . . . .17 Special Social Factors . . . . . . . .68

Endurance . . . . . . . . .17 Size of Community . . . . . . . . . . . . .68

Fast-Talking . . . . . . . . . . .17 Secrecy ..................... Wealth of Community . . . . . . . . . .68
Fortune Telling. . . .
. . . ... . . . . . . . . . .18 Attitudes of the Law . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .68
Herbalism . . . . .
Hunting . . . . .:. . . . . . . . . .18 Relationship with Merchants

Information Gathering . . . . . . . . .18
Intimidation .........
Locksmithing . . . . . . . . . .18 Guild Rulership . .
Looting . . . . . . . . . .
Navigation . . . . . . . . . . . .19 Guildmembers and the Rest . . . . . . . . .71
Experience Levels of Thieves . . . . . . . . .71
. . . . .19
Multi-classed Thieves
. . . . .19
NonThief Guildmem
. . . . .19
Fleshing out Guildmembers . . . . . . . . . .73
Observation. . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 Lawful Operations
Thieves' Guilds in the Campaign World .57 Alignment . . . . . .
Reading/Writing . . . . . . . . . .19
Survival . . . . . . . . . Size and Wealth of Communities . . . . .57
. . . . .19

Tracking . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 . . . . . .73
. . . . .19 . . . . . .74
Trailing .................... Junior Thieves . . . . .
Voice Mimicry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21 . . . . . .74
A Final Record . . . .
Demihumans and Nonweapon
Proficiencies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21
. . . .Chapter 3: Thief Kits ....22 Racial Divisions
Religious Factors . . . . .
Historical Factors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5. 9
Kits and Thief Types . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 . . . . . .75
Kits and the Thief Classes . . . . . . . . .23 Thieves' Guilds and Other Groups . . . .59
ouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Kits and Character Creation . . . . . . . . . .23 Thieves and the Law . . . . . . . . . . .
The Thief Kits . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . .23 Thieves' Guild of Mallain . . . . . . .
Persecution . . . . . . . . . . . . .77
Unusual Guilds . . . .
Thief Kits and Thieving Skills. . . . . . . . . .24 Hassle . . . . . . . . . . . . The Traveling Guild . . . . . .

Acrobat . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24 Opposition . . . . . . . . .6C Piratical Guilds .................... 78
Adventurer . . . . .6C
Assassin . . . . . . . . . .25 Tolerance . The Guild of Honorable Gentlemen ..78
. . . . .26
Corruption . . . . . . . . . . . . .6C

Bandit . . . . . . . . . . . . .27 Complex/Mix . . . . . . . .
Beggar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .28 Thieves and Merchants . .
. . . . .61

Bounty Hunter . . . . . . . . . . . .29 Warfare. . . . . . . . . . .

Buccaneer ........................... 31 Standoff . . . . . . Levels of Operations
Learning the Ropes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3.2 Submission. . . .

Losing and Regaining Balance . . . . . . .32
Optional Rule: Dodging . . . . . . . . . . . 3. 2
Burglar ............................. 33
Cutpurse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34 Thieves and Other Guilds . . . . . . . . . .6;
. . . . . .6; . . . . . . . . . .82
Fence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36 Craft Guilds . .

Investigator . . . . . . . . . . .37 "White Lily" ..................... 82 I;
scout ........
. . . . . .37 Guildmaster Tulmara Zir Bharann,
Smuggler . . . . . . . . . .39
spy ......... . . . . . .41 "Cruelty's Mask" . . . . . . . . . . .8 4
. . . . . .41 Quartermaster Marmel Raveiz . . . . . . .8f
Swashbuckler . . .
. .43 Guild Organizations Durdlan Silverpalm, Master Fence. . . .8.$
Swindler . . . . .

Lapter 5: Tools of the Trade ...9C MWaartkeredShCoaersd.s..a.n..d..B..ia..s.e.d..D..i.c.e. .....lo2 Its.. ...... , .,125
17-128
:quipmentfor the Thief's Skill! ... .9( .IO2
iskill Modifiers. ..................... .90
Cost and Ava+bility of Equipment ...I02 List of I
MagicalItemsfor Thieves.. .........,103
Detection Resistance. ............... ,104 1: NSuogngweestaepdoBnePgrgoinfigciMenocdieifciTerhsi,e.v.e,s,
Description of Magical Items .......
Mix. Magic: Clothing and Jewelry.. ...,l1o045 2:
3: Fast-Talking Modifiers ..........
.............. 91
Mix. Magic: Other Sneaky Stuff.. ....lo6 4: Thieving Skill, Thief Kit Modifiers
. . . . . . . . . . . . .9.1
.................. .lo7 5 Urlar's SkillAdjustments
Acid ...................
6 Aljahar's ExperienceTab1

Cutters, Files and hacksaws .........92 ............Chapter6: The Arts of Deception: 7-27: Thieves' Guild Creation Tables.68-82
classk cons..
MagnifyingGlass/Lens .............92 .lo9 28: SilencedArmor (Elfin Chain) Effect
Short-change Swindles. . . . . . . .,109
Oil and Funnel. ................... .92 Gambling ...........

LTime Scales 93 30: Special FunctionArrows ..........96
. . . . . . . . . . 93
inding and Re 31: Purchasing Thief Equipme
Lockpicks........................ .93
oving Silently.. ................... .93 JewelrySwindles. .................. .I10 32: Magical Items for Thieves
......... .lo4
SilencedArmor. , . Robbing the Robbers .......... 33: Potions and Oils

Strapping wThieva ..I11 3 4 Misc. Magic: Clo

iding in Shadows .................. .94 uks ai s ...........111 35: Other Sneaky Stuff.. ........... .lo4
36: Magic Weapons ............... ,204

BuildingBetter LOC 37: Effects of Armor on
Multiple Locks.. ..
Aaobatic Proficiencies .114
Ldpicking/Trap RemovingNoise. 212
38: Effectsof Armor on Thief Skills.. .115
Animal Assistants. ................. ,112
etectingNoise. .................... .94 Written by JohnNephew, Carl Sargent and
imbingWalls ..................... .94 The Thief's Fetch Douglas Niles

Climbing Daggers 95 Poison and Sedat Edited by Scott Haring, TSR staff
Grapples. ........................ .95 Poison Antidotes ................ .113 Black and White Art by George Barr

Special FunctionArrows ............96 Color Art by Larry Urnore, John and Lau
Lakey, Robin Woad
Spikesand Line.. ..................97 Typographyby Gaye CYKeefe
iscellaneous Equipment ............ .97
rglary and Theft.. ................ .97 ADVANCED DIINGEONS & DRAGONS.
Antidote Effects.. ................ .113 MONSTKOUS COMPENIUM. AD&D. mrl
HGolaussseCbruetatkeerr..'s.H..a.r.n..e.s.s.................... . . ...9977 ProducingAntidotes ............. .113 WORLD OF GREYHAWK are mstewd trade-
Keymaking Set ................... .97 Mugging-the Thief's KO ........... .114
Armor and Acrobatic P marksowned by TSR, Inc. The l%R logo is a
Limewood Strips.. ................ .98 hademark owned by TSR, Inc.All TSRcharac-
Sharkskin........................ .98 Armor and Thief Skills tas,character names. and the distinctive liken-
thereof are'tradanark.owned by TSR,Inc.
Skeleton Key. .................... .98 Uupter8:TheTNdCa .I16

Tar Paper ........................ .98 Cultural Considerations.
vWasiaoxnPsa.d....................................................
99 Social Campaign Enviror.LLls..L.....
.99 Social Overview of Thieves ..........117
Printed inthe U.S.A.November1993
Aniseed. ......................... .99 Detailed and Varied NPCs.. .........S18
UniqueBuildingsand Structures ......119
Caltrops ......................... .99 Dishibuted to the book trade in the United Statesby
A Well-Defined Economic System.. Random House, Inc. and in Canada by Random
Catstink ......................... .99 Houseof CanadaLM. M u t e d in Ule United Kjng-
InterestingObjects W h t and Other dom by TSR Ltd. Distributed to the toy and hobby
Treasure ..................... .120 trade by +ddishiiutors.

Hollow Boots. ............ Well-Defined Legal System ..........,120
Counter-Thief Tactics. .............. .120
Marbles ........................ .lo0 This pmdua isprotect& Under the copyright lawsof
Backgroundof InterestingConflicts
elfProtection and Combat ......... .1W the United States of America.Any rrpmductionor
Challengesto Thief Character Class other unauthorizeduse of the material or artwork

Abilities ...................... .I21 contained h e i n is prohibited without the express
writteneonsent ofER,lnc.
The Thieves' Guild.. ................121
Folding Bow.. ....... TSR, lnc. TSR Ltd.
The Great Artifact
Sword Stick.. ..................,.101 201 SheridamSpringsRd. 120 ChurchEnd
Lake Genws, ChqHinton
Wrist Sheath .................... .lo1 WI 53147 CambridgeCB13LB
USA. United h g d o m
101
101 TheSpy ......................... 124

Blade Pole ..................... , 2 0 1 Playing In and Runningthe Thief
Climbing Pole ....... ............. 101
LeCvealmsopfaMigna-g. .ic..i.n..t.h.e..T..h.i.e.v..e.s.'. .125
Hooked Pole ........ .............lo1
Mirror Pole ......... .............101 Multi- or Dual classed Thieves. ....,125
iFsacleslelaSncyab. .b.a.r.d......... .... ... ........................1lo022
Henchmenand Hirelings of Thieves .125
Hand WarmingLamp. .............102

The world of the thief is a world of ters. Indeed, it is possible and in fact The Scout can do for an adventuring
darkness and stealth, hidden from the quite easy to play a thief character party what skirmishing troops do for
eyes of respectablefolk, yet often under without the information herein. an army: he is a fast, lightlyarmored in-
the scrutiny of the zealous enforcers of dividual who can utilize stealth and
the law. It is a world of courage and However, the player who wishes to speed to study terrain and watch for
fear, of bravado and cowardice, of vio- develop his player character thief in a ambush. Thief-scouts and rangers in
lence and treachery. unique fashion, or who seeks aid in combination make splendid reconnais-
deepening and broadening the charac- sance bands.
Yet it is also a world of color and ter's personality, goals, and motiva-
laughter, lively parties and bustling tions, will find helpful suggestionsand Other kits include the Trouble-
markets. The thief, more than any ideas in the Complete Thiers Hand- shooter (the dungeon-crawling thief),
other character class, practices his arts book. Acrobats, Beggars, Bounty Hunters,
among his fellow men (or halflings, or Swindlers, and many more.
elves, or whatever). He seeks the gath- But the book is a guide for DMs as
erings of population, the confluence of well. Information on organizing Typical thiefly personalities are also '
wealth and avarice, where treasures are thieves' guilds, for example, is essential
there for the taking. to any ongoing thief campaign. If no provided, allowing players to create de-
guild is present, consistent information tailed PCs based upon these arche-
To be sure, many a thief has proven on other societal sanctions needs to be types, but also providing useful pieces
his worth time and again in the darkest determined by the DM-and the infor- of imaginative roleplaying information
reaches of a forgotten dungeon, among mation must be available to players as for many long-lived, high-level PCs.
the snowy peaks of the bleakest of wild well.
vistas, or within the halls of a fortress Chapter 2 describes additional non-
or military camp. Quests into the wild Consequently, no portion of this weapon proficiencies of particular use
contain as much appeal for the thief as book is prohibited to player viewing, to thief characters. New equipment
they do for other characters. In fact, nor is any part of it irrelevant to the ac- types, both magical and mundane, are
should the prospect of treasure appear tivities of a good DM. introduced in later chapters. And a few
significant enough, many a thief will new rules cover areas of concern to
lead the way in encouraging his com- New rules and procedures only be- thieves-lethal and non-lethal poisons,
panions to embark on such a mission. :ome officialcampaign rules in a cam- for example, and how to determine the
paign where the DM so declares. quality of workmanship used to build a
But when the adventurers return to Players who wish to employ some of lock or trap.
the sheltering walls of their homes, hese materials can certainly ask the
wherever these may be, and rejoin the DM to use them, but as always, the A section on running a thief cam-
population, the thief is best equipped to Dungeon Master has the last word. paign provides players, and most par-
find adventure there. And when such ticularly DMs, with suggestions and
adventure is discovered, it is thiefly The Role of the Thief guidelines on ways to tailor the cam-
skills that are most often called into paign toward the thief PCs' areas of in-
The skulking terest and expertise.
play. mrglar pilfering through the night is
xrhaps the most common picture of Whatever area of the book yields the
The Purpose of the he thief. Neither players nor Dungeon most use, players and DMs alike who
Complete Thief's Handbook blasters should blind themselves to wish to expand the domain of the thief
Ither possibilities, some of them more in their campaign world should find
This book pro- lseful (and socially acceptable) than many things of interest between these
vides information of use to players of :ommon theft. covers.
thief characters, and to DMs running
campaigns including thieves. The em- The thief character kits introduced in Thieves and the Law
phasis lies heavily upon a campaign Zhapter 3 provide a variety of thief
where many PCs are thieves, but there ypes. These are not new character . Geraldor slipped
is no reason provisions in this book lasses by any means, but the kits can
cannot be employedby groups with but ielp players define thieves in one of through the alley, his black cloak mask-
a single thief among them. zeveral areas of specialty. Some of these ing his progress through the filthy pas-
nclude: sage. Reassuring himself that he was
None of the information here not pursued. he stepped boldly onto the
changes any existing AD&Da 2nd Edi- The Spy, long a noble practitioner of Golden Way. Witha neruous gesture he
tion rule. Instead, the idea is to amplify he thiefly skills. Indeed, lockpicking, jmoothed his oily black hair and at-
and detail those rules for players who noving silently, hiding in shadows, and tempted to stroke his wispy mustache.
are interested in playing thief charac- he like are all skills of prime impor-
ance to the Spy. Sighing, Geraldor realized that any
attempt to look like a gentleman was

4

- In

omed to failure. He hoped his guild- ver candleabra, a huge and obviously personal possessions. An inherent part I.
ter’s plan was intact. enchanted sword, and other wonders. of this definition includes the penalties
All o f these he disdained as too bulky due those who violate these proce-
And there before him was the f o r his current mission. After all, dures. Odd as it may sound, thieves
ghgate! Geraldor‘s heart pounded as Geraldor was a professional! cannot exist without some kind of legal
examined the brawny men at a m , framework.
r in number, manning the post. A s Scarcelysuppressing an urge to whis-
tle, Geraldor sauntered back along the And from the time in any culture
only public route into the city’s Golden Way. He would pass through when personal possessions come into
lden Quarter-home of all the the Highgate again and immediately being, there have been those who seek
althiest merchants, most powerful disappear into the clustered neighbor- to remove the possessionsof others and
hoods that crowded both banks of the make them their own. It is for players of
ds, and influential ambassadors in muddy river.
characters who attempt this perilous
the land-the Highgate was usually He saw Motto at the guardpost and exchange of wealth, and to their
nodded casually, passing under the Dungeon Masters, that this tome is in-
ut not tonight. Geraldor recognized great stone arch again on his way out of tended.
giant, hulking form of Morto, the Golden Quarter. Only then did he
geant-at-arms of the city watch. As notice something wrong: Morto stood Of course, some thievery occurs un-
raldor had expected-nay, hoped- mute, with his hands shackled before der the guise of authority, and as such
him. fallsbeyond the scope of this book. Tax
commanded the detachment at collectors, for example, may steal from
A t that same instant a heavy gauntlet those who regard such claims as thiev-
a barely concealed nod of rec- fell upon Geraldor‘s shoulder and a ery. So do conquerors. But these are not
nition, Geraldor stalked to the gate massive ann propelled him into the AD&[email protected] While they may ap-
stone wall of the gatehouse. proach the category of bandits, their
stood impatiently as Morto made a ”theft”demands more fighting skill and
ewe o f examining his “pass.”In re- “What have we here?” growled an aggression than stealth.
ty, this crudely forged slip would unfamiliar voice. Errified. Geraldor
saw that it issued from beneath the By far the more common type of
with any capacity for com- shiny cap of a watch captain. thievery, and the one that generally
comes to mind when discussing the
orto’s reading ability was not “-just going home. m-my lord!” he character type,is the furtive pilfering
tonight. Instead, the guard‘s stammered. wriggling in a futile at- described in the incident above. Poor
the guildmaster was the force tempt to break away. Geraldor has suffered the fate known to
orto’scurt nod and his gesture many of these wrongdoers as he is
ing Geraldor through the The captain laughed, having already taken by the long ann of the law. But if
gate. Geraldor fairly skipped found and discarded Geraldor’s fake that law did not exist, then Geraldor‘s
ough the great stone arch. He had pass. The man’s gloved hands contin- task would become meaningless.
the Golden Quarter! ued to poke through Geraldor‘sclothes
his movements took on the and pouches. retrieving object after ob- This point is one that should be well
owy aspect of the master thief at ject, often with a low chuckle. remembered by those who play thieves
aswell as those who run the campaigns.
. Though he remained alert, he ”Thelady Allorana‘s diadem, I see- Regardlessof how chaotic the setting, a
perhaps she loaned it to you!“ The cap- structure at least vaguely approximat-
that the major obstacle had been tain roared with hilarity, joined by the ing a legal system is necessary before
d at the gate. The hefty bribes of- guffaws of a full company of guards- the thief can really begin to ply his
to Morto and his associates had men that Geraldor now saw in the
shadows.
the way to riches. It only re-
d for Geraldor to haul those Then the captain‘s voice lowered as
his hand tightened around Geraldor’s
wiry thief found the mansion throat. “Now. thief, you will find out
d been selected by the guildmas- what the l m s are in our town. And you
Family and seruants all slept, and will have time to learn them while you
y had no dog. In a matter of minutes rot in gaol!”
raldor had collected the lady’sgems.
spent several more minutes seeking From even before the time, thou-
strongbox, finally discovering it in a sands of years ago, when the Code of
all, luxurious sitting room. He Hammurabi first defined the legal sys-
d the lock and pulled out only the tem of a body of government, and ex-
valuable coinage, platinum and tending to the present day, societies
before soundlessly slipping to-
Ihave created procedures for defining
In the house he saw magnificent sil-

5



Thieves are perhaps the most fasci- City: Any place where people gather claim any wilderness as ”territory,”
nating and diverse class of player- in large numbers, there will be those thieves from these regions are typically
characters in the AD&[email protected] at who live off the sweat and toil of oth- affiliated with one or another organized
least they can be, if played properly. ers. Besides politicians, thieves are of- band of miscreants. These bandit
The thief has a certain innate, charming ten among this group. A city groups don’t have the organization or
flair, which the Player‘s Handbook de- background will open many possibili- sophistication of the urban guilds, but
scribes: ”Thieves are people who feel ties of specialization for your thief. Be- they are still formidable, and their ri-
that the world (and everyone in it) cause a city is a complicated web of valries may run as deep as any among
somehow owes them a living. They get many people, each person tends to have the big city guilds.
by day by day, living in the highest style more specialized functions. This is true
they can afford and doing as little work for thieves as well as normal, respect- A great many demihuman thieves
able citizens. originally hail from a wilderness set-
as possible . . .” ting, although they do not necessarily
Note that thieves in cities, especially fit the ”bandit” mold common among
This is an accurate description of those who have very specialized skills humans. (See the section on demihu-
many thieves, but not all; and there are and abilities, are most likely connected mans, below, for more information.)
many exceptions. You will find that the with a thieves’guild; or, if they are not,
character-that is, the personality-of they will surely run afoul of one sooner Wandering: Finally, some thieves
your thief character will be very impor- or later. If your thief hails from an ur- have never called any place ”home.”
tant, vital to making the thief a living, ban center, be sure to figure out what They travel town and village, city and
breathing person. It makes them more his relationship to the local thieves’ wilderness, wherever they think for-
fun to play, too. guild (or, in some places, guilds) is. tune might grant them better opportu-
nities. Charlatans, those who make
Personality, then, is the topic of this Countryside: A few thieves are able their living by duping others with all
chapter. It comes before the chapters of to make a living in a single populated, sorts of fraud, are often wanderers:
technical information on kits, new abil- rural area. They tend to be quite differ- They will stay in one place as long as
ities and so forth, because we believe ent from their city-dwelling cousins- there’s money to be made, but they
that when you are designing a thief pickpocketing, for instance, is hope to be long gone, preying on oth-
character, perhaps even more so than probably not going to be practiced ers’ gullibiliby, before their scams are
with other classes, personality consid- much without the shelter and anonym- uncovered.
erations should come first. Who is this ity of the urban crowds. Extortion,
character? Where is he from? Why is he banditry, burglary, and various similar Social Background
a thief-has he stolen bread crumbs all thefts are more typical means of mak-
his life just to survive, or is he an idle ing a living from the peasants and their After you have
fop who moonlights as a burglar just rulers in the countryside. Fences also chosen a setting for your character, you
for thrills? may work the countryside, selling should decide his social background.
wares that may have been stolen in dis- At the start this need only be done in a
After asking yourself such questions, tant cities. general way: select a poor (or un-
and answering them, you will then be known), middle, wealthy or noble class
better able to proceed into the technical Thieves’ guilds often have an active background. This background will
details. Your character will exist in your hand in populated rural regions, have important effects on what re-
mind, and the task will then be just a though it is not as firm as in the cities. sources are available to the character.
matter of translating that vision into Also be sure to consider how it relates
working game terms. Wilderness: Thieves are, by defini- to the thief‘s motivation (below).
tion, those who garner their living from
There are three basic things to con- others, so few are to be found making Poor/unknown: Most thieves are
sider when putting together your thief‘s their permanent abode in the wilder- from a poor background. Most people
background and personality: setting, ness, far from human settlement. Those would just as well make an honest liv-
social background, and motivations. who do are usually bandits, with a ing, if they can. For some in the lower
stronghold set up somewhere secure, classes, however, there is simply no
Setting from which they can make raids on such opportunity, and so crime be-
nearby settlements or trade routes. In comes a means of survival. The vast
Where is the AD&D fantasy settings, there are also majority of such criminals spend their
character from? This will have an effect innumberable possibilities for thieves lives as petty thieves, picking pockets,
on what sorts of skills the thief may who survive by taking liberties in their mugging people foolish enough to walk
have picked up. City, countryside, and relationships with the local non- the streets at night alone, perhaps even
wilderness are all possible settings; or humans. planning and executing a burglary.
the thief may have been a wanderer all
of his life. While few thieves’ guilds would

7

These poverty-born thieves form the daughter (and apprentice), to become This may sound so convoluted that
backbone of most thieves' guilds. The an apprentice thief. you may wonder why we should even
guild regulates their activitiesas well as approach the issue. It is useful to
it can, and uses it as a pool, from which But greed is a more typical motiva- choose a basic motivation, however, as
are drawn the most talented and prom- the basis for role-playing. As you play
ising. Because skill and cunning are the tion. Many swindlers come from the the character, more motivations will
ultimate determining factors, many a middle class; they decided that there arise-and old ones may vanish. In this
famous thief-whether in esteem or are better profits to be made through way a character may come to life.
power among guild comrades, or out- dishonesty than hard work.
side of the underworld-rose from the A character who starts with the greed
most humble beginnings. Thieves of middle-class origin usu- motivation may, in the COUM of his ad-
ally have standard initial funds. ventures, encounter a great deal of injus
An "unknown" background usually tice wrought by the rulers of the land. He
fits in with the poorer classes. This Wealthy/Noble: Still fewer thieves
means the character was an orphan, are from affluent families. This is part- 4may even trace his own selfishnessto the
and does not know his ancestry; his ly because people with ample funds
parents may have been criminals, have litde motivation to pick pockets; perverted values of the rulers. As he or-
middle-class artisans, or even wealthy but even more, it is because thievery is ganizes his activitiesto oppose the rulers,
merchants or nobles. Dickens' Oliver very much socially unacceptable at this then, his motivation may subtly swing
Twist is a classic example of a thief of level. There are exceptions, of course. towards justice. It is unlikely, however,
unknown ancestry. For all practical Wealthy privateers, raiding the trade
purposes, the character is one of the lanes of rival nations for glory and that he would be so "converted" as to lose
poor people, like everyone with whom plunder, may enjoy a high and respect- entirely the greed that drove him for so
he grew up. However, a hook in the long. New conflicts and role-playing o p
campaign may be the search for, or ac- ed profile for a time. And wealthy fam- portunities may arise within the charac-
cidental discovery of, a character's an- ter betweenhis greed and his new-found
cestry. ilies of crime lords are a different
matter entirely. sense of justice.
Player characters from a poor back- Be sure to keep your character's moti-
ground may, at the DMs option, have a In any case, a thief from a wealthy
smaller amount of starting money than family is expected to distinguish him- vations in mind when you select hls
they would otherwise (perhaps 2d4 x 10 self in some way or other- a l i i e n f . The descriptionbelow of each
gp). If a player character is part of a flamboyance, daring, audacity, general motivation includes a word on
guild, however, he has probably been charm-even if he hides his identity appropriate, d a t e d aljgnments. Note al-
accepted as someone who shows prom- during his roguish endeavors. Other- so that as the character develops in play
ise, and the guild may provide standard wise, what is the point of risking life
equipment and money for its and reputation? and motivation shifts, alignment too
apprentice-the equivalent of the usual may undergo change. (For a thorough
2d6 x 10 gp. This question might be asked of any discussion of a l i e n t changes, see the
AD&W2nd Edition Player's Handbook,
Middle: A few thieves may hail from character, of course. And so we turn to
the middle classes, perhaps from fami- the topic of motivations. p. 49, and the DUNGEON MASTEP
lies of artisans and petty merchants. Guide,pp. 22-29,)
Such characters are less likely to be Motivation
stealing for survival, though desperate The motivation description may also
financial straits may bring people to Why is the thief include suggestions on thief kits appro-
seek illegal solutions, which could tie what he is? You can ask this question priate to this motivation. The thief kits
into a whole net of crime. even before you know specificallywhat are fully detailed in Chapter 3.
his area of expertise or technical inter-
Imagine, for instance, a locksmith est is. A person primarily motivatedby Fame/Infamy:The fabled charm of a
who needs money to support his ailing thief's life attracts many an adventures
mother. The landlord threatens evic- greedcould be a troubleshooter or a cat in search of glory. In our own re41
tion, and so forth; in desperation, the world, many thieves have achieved
locksmith turns to the thieves'guild for burglar, for instance, provided the job great fame, and in literature even more
pays well. such fmresabound. Infamy surely ac-
a quick, easy, high-interest loan. As the companies the career of many a suc-
We suggest six basic motivations: cessful thief; for some it may even be
family gets more and more entangled fame (or infamy), greed, justice, loyal- their ultimate goal. If this is the case
by their debts, the guild decides to ac- ty, survival, and whim. These are of with your character, you must be cer-
cept as partial payment the locksmith's course generalizations, and any partic- tain to bring it out while role-playing.
ular character probably has motiva- Every action should be considered in
tions more complex than one of these terms of how it may increase the
simple descriptions. Also, characters worlds knowledge of the thief's
often have more than one motivation, amazing exploits.
and different motivations can apply to
different situations.

Greed: The simplest and perhaps
most stereotypical motive behind the
thief's life is greed. Combining greed
with sloth, the thief shuns "real" work,
and lightens his load by lightening oth-
ers' purses. Or, the character simply
loves wealth, but is unable to get it
through acceptable channels.

Characters with greed as their pri-
mary motivation surely would not be

alignment. Although even
thieves may have a certain ele-
of greed, it would not be the big-
factor shaping their lives.
Justice: This is a rare and peculiar
motivation, since thieves are generally
considered to be anything but good.
The classic example of the thief moti-
vated by justice is Robin Hood-at
least as popularly portrayed, if not in
historical reality. Such a character must
arise in a region or nation where injus-
tice rules, though it need not do so offi-
cially. For instance, in one town the
rulers may be blatantly evil and cor-
rupt; a thief motivated by justice may
devote himself to fighting those rulers.
Characters motivated by justice will
probably be of good, lawful neutral, or
true neutral alignments. Remember
that each alignment has its own idea of
what constitutes "justice"; to a true neu-
tral thief, for instance, justice means
maintaining the balances between good
and evil, law and chaos.
Loyalty: Some connection in the
character's past has drawn him onto the
road of the thief, and he follows it faith-
fullyout of loyalty or debt to that past.
For instance, one character might have
been born into 'a family of crimelords;
he became a thief as a matter of family
oyalty. Another thief may have been
an orphan, sheltered and raised by the
thieves' guild. Even though his moral
nsibilities may lead him to question
is benefactors' and even his own be-
avior, his loyalty and gratitude for the
fe and opportunity they gave him may
t least for the moment) outweigh his

Loyalty is most appropriate as the
'primary motivation of lawful charac-

9

Role-Playing Thieves

' other moral imperatives may lead to Below are a number of sample arche- tistical, motivated by whim or a desire
some very interesting role-playing. types that you may have encountered for fame-if not fame for himself, than
in books, movies, and so forth. Experi- for his crimes, since he probably will
I Survival: Many thieves from the enced role-players will probably find main anonymous.
lower strata of society engage in theft that thieves they've played in the past
and the like for the simple purpose of are similar to one of these archetypes, Desperado: For some reason or an-
survival. Player-character adventurers or are a fusion of two or more. other, this character is runningfrom the
are prone to gamer more wealth than law-or, perhaps even worse, the un-
they need for mere survival, so (unless Remember that these archetypes, like
the Dungeon Master works diligently to the background options presented diwritten law of the underworld. In any
keep them poor) they might need a new above, are meant to inspire role-
motivation after a few s u c c d adven- playing, not to limit it. The personality case, he is ready and willing to do what-
tures. Probably a secondary motivation you create should provide the basis of ever is necessary, however drastic, to
(such as greed, or even justice) would your character, but it would be wrong preserve his life-he knows all too well
come to the fore and become primary. to define every possible choice before- how soon its end may be. Delicacy and
Thieves who steal for survival usu- hand. Part of the pleasure of role- rational forethought are not the forte of
ally don't have lawful alignments, playing is seeing your characters the Desperado. This is the sort of char-
though lawful evil is possible. change and grow; like real people, they acter that, when discovered pickpock-
Whim Some thieves engage in their should be full of surprises, ready to eting, might kniie his target, lest
activities for the sheer thrill of it. They adapt and change with new situations. face be identified.
can survive (materially) without it,
they don't need or desire the money as The Artist: This thief is searching for The Desperado character may be
such, and they are indifferent to fame. "the perfect crime." He chooses jobs for any social background, although poor
They simply desire to steal, to deceive their challenge and aesthetic pleasure, is most likely. His motivation is simple
not strictly for their payoff in wealth. survival, and he may be found in any
1 people, to pull off the most impossible setting. You must be certain that you
heist or scam-this grants them su- A drunken duke who is stumbling know what circumstances have led to
preme pleasure. Whim-motivated down an alley late at night, heavily his desperation. Desperadoes are often
thieves range from the ennui-stricken laden with jewels and gold, would be of shork-lived; either whatever's chasing
rich man's son to the compulsive shop- little interest as a target for the Artist. In them catches up and gets them, or
lifter whose desire to steal may push fact, the Artist would be offended if (rarely) they eliminate the threat and
him to the very edge of sanity. someone were to suggest that he per- are able to shift to a less high-strung
This motivation is most appropriate form such a ludicrously easy theft, lifestyle. The Desperado either dies or
for chaotic alignments.
since it would be sofar "below" the Art- changes to something else . . . though
Sample Archetypes
ist's caliber. surely his old habits die hard.
By combining as- However, the Artiit might take ad- Folk Hero: When the system itself is
sorted settings, social backgrounds and
motivations, you can create a worldful vantage of the situation if it might play unjust, those labeled "criminals" are
of distinct thieves. Another way of sometimes in fact the good guys. The
making a character is to start with a into a bigger, grander scheme. For in- Folk Hero will not sit idly by while ty-
whole concept of what sort of thief he stance, he might play the part of a rants rule. He musters all his charisma
IS,rather than building him from the in- "Good Samaritan," escortingthe foolish and roguish skills, and leads the fight to
dividual blocks we described above. noble to his residence, and thereby right wrongs and, if he can, topple the
gaining the duke's confidence. This evil regime. Robin Hood is a Folk Hero
But where do you get such a concept? gives the Artist special privileges, not of great fame. According to legend he
History, folklore and literature all pro- the least of which is the duke's unques- stole from the wealthy nobles a
vide colorful examples of thieves. From tioning trust. (After all, how could the clergy, and gave the money to the PO
these you can abstract a model, an ar- Artist have been a thief if he escorted overtaxed peasants.
the duke safely home, rather than mug-
I chetype, on which you base your begin- ging him?)From this position, then, the Robin Hood was of noble lin
ning character. Like the elements we Artist may plan a truly exceptional and his band did their work in the c
described above, these archetypes are theft, the sort that would stir up an ex- tryside, but a Folk Hero could operate
rough and general. Through effective traordinary amount of public interest, in any setting and be of any socialback-
role-playing you will expand your thief but could go unsolved for decades. ground. Imagine, for instance, a thief
into a more detailed, interesting, and from the lower classes who lives in a
believable character. The Artist is usually found in an ur- city ruled by an evil tyrant. He and his
ban setting or, I e s frequently, wander- compatriots devote themselves to the
ing. His family was surely above the freeingofmaltreated slaves and falsely
poverty level, and probably even
wealthy; theft for the Artist is chiefly a

victed prisoners, smugglingthem to by honor and family loyalty and such an incomparable thrill. Thieves, such
ety beyond the evil kingdom’s bor- trash. The Professional is bound to no as Reynard the Fox, are often portrayed
absolute codes, except perhaps a con- this way in fairy and folk tales.
The chief motivation of the Folk tract and a clean, efficient theft. He has
is, of course, justice (or at least so honor and honesty inasmuch as it is In role-playing, you may wish to
necessary to maintain his reputation for make a Trickster thief more compli-
I st appear to the public eye). dependability. cated. Why does he seem so light and
Kleptomaniac: The kleptomaniac is a frivolous? Does he hide something be-
aracter with a compulsion, perhaps The Professional’smotivation is hard neath it all? ls he in fact driven, ob-
irely uncontrollable, to steal. This to pinpoint. Clearly it is neither justice sessed with proving himself the most
sion might be at odds with the nor loyalty; and he knows that greed, clever of all? Such a character could
he character’spersonality; inter- whim and the lust for fame can cloud even become dangerous to those
ng role-playing may arise as the judgement and lead to fatal sloppiness. around him if his insecurities were
cter has an internal conflict be- Perhaps then ”survival” would be the brought out and played upon. What if
n his driving desire to steal and a best description of the Professional’s people are impressed by his antics?
conscience that never stops tell- motive; though any Professional worth What if they manage to outwit his
him how wrong and evil his actions his salt does better than merely survive. pranks, or don’t find them amusing?
.This character may be of any back- Of all the archetypes, he is perhaps Does he need attention, or is the thrill
d and setting. His motivation most likely to have a businesslike, alone enough to satisfy him? Might the
t be classified (very loosely) as middle-class background, though any trickster be cowed into quiet humility,
,since it lacks a rational reason. of the others is possible. The Profes- or pushed into rage or frustration?
obster: This character was literally sional is usually based in a city, or wan-
sed in crime. Perhaps he hails from a ders, and his services are usually for Vigilante: The Vigilante is a loner, a
of elite criminals, leaders of or- hire. He may be associatedwith a guild, curious sort of thief whose life is preoc-
ed crime. Over the years they but would prefer to be as independent cupied with defeating the schemes of
developed their own codes of be- as possible-other people’s involve- criminals. He finds the law too restric-
and a twisted sense of honor. A ment in his work is more often hin- tive, or unenforced, and so he goes out-
r is found in the city, and may be drance than help. side it to bring about his vision of
any background. (Crime families justice. Ironically, the Vigilante trains
y have considerable wealth, but if Street UrchinlVictim of Circum- himself in the very skills of the thieves
ir illegal activities are well known, stances: This thief grew up in an impov- he opposes; he comes to know their
at least the topic for common N- erished, harsh environment. There he ways and their minds as though he were
, they may have considerably learned that if you need somethingyou one of them.
esteem in the eyes of good citi- have to take it, because no one will give
than those of comparable yet it to you. People may tell him that steal- Though he fights on the side of law,
nestly-earned wealth.) His primary ing is wrong, but he cannot believe it- the law does not often appreciate the
tivation is usually greed or loyalty, to him, stealing has always meant Vigilante. He is unsupervised,
d his alignment is most often lawful survival. He long ago lost any sense of unpredictable-and therefore danger-
tral or lawful evil. Characters of regret for his actions. He was driven to ous. This is especiallytrue in the case of
sort often make up the backbone of a life of crime so long ago that it seems locales where the leadership is a bit on
more powerful thieves’ guilds. to him the only life possible. the shady side itself, perhaps riddled
e Professional: Thievery is simply with bribery, graft, connections with
for this character. He is often aloof This character invariably knows his crime, and other such corruption. The
m other, “lesser”thieves: He has lit- setting (typicallya city) inside and out, Vigilante leads a dangerous life, for he
olerance for flamboyant fools, like and probably has many useful connec- can have many powerful enemies.
Artist and Trickster; Desperadoes tions. His social background is always
Kleptomaniacs, desperate and ob- lower class or unknown. Street Urchins O n the other hand, the Vigilante may
sed, are sloppy and crude in compar- that continue the thief‘s l i e may de- attain a revered status similar to that of
n to his refined talents and balanced velop into a different archetype as they a Folk Hero, if his successes become
erament; Folk Heroes are just silly. grow older; the Professional, for in- popular knowledge. Popularity might
gilante is a dangerous foe for the stance, may blossom from such a soli- do little to ward off a powerful thieves’
sional, in part because he is in- tary young thief. guild, but it can cow the more fearful of
ehensible to him. The Mobster public officialsinto tacit approval of his
Id seem to be the Professional’skin- Trickster: This is a thrillseeker, a extralegal exploits.
spirit, but they are too tightly character who delightsin pulling offthe
most outrageous and amazing scams. A Vigilante will, of course, not be
Deception and pranks are his food and part of a thieves’ guild-that is his an-
drink; flirting with danger grants him tithesis. He may, however, be part of
some secret society devoted to justice.

Such a society may consist entirely of sed to thwart thieves. The dwarven on. A very dangerous few, however,
Vigilante-type thieves, or it could in- hief, then, is often an installer of such 'lave abandoned their racial legacy, and
clude adventurers of many diverse tems, or an advisor on security mat- xcome treacherous and unpredictable.
classes. ers. And, naturally, knowledge of how
o put something together is also useful Any dwarf found in a thieves' guild
The Vigilante may be of any social or taking it apart . . . :an be assumed to be an outcast from
background. He might work in any set- Jwarven society.
ting, but the city is most common. His The kit most favored by dwarven
primary motivation is usually justice, hieves is, naturally, the trouble- Elven thieves are
but one could imagine it being fame, .hooter. Here he can make use of his jometimes characterized as eavesdrop
loyalty (perhaps to comrades or rela- mowledge and skills without engaging 3ers or spies. Elven culture has shown
tives killed or ruined by criminals), or n the dishonorable activity of genuine relatively little interest in personal, ma-
possibly even whim. heft. If you want to check how secure
row jewels actually are, or whether terial property; with their incredibly 1
Some comic books do a great job of rour prison is in fact inescapable, a
illustrating the complex psychologies lwarven troubleshooter isprobably the long lifespans, they are more aware
found in characters of the Vigilante ar- ,est way to Eind out. *an most of the transitory nature of
chetype. They make excellent inspira- things.
tional reading. Bounty hunters also are found in the
anks of dwarven thieves. They may But while material things come and
Demihumans ierve the kings under the mountains, so, knowledge is eternal, and it is what
,ringing back scoundrels and criminals ,he elven thief covets above all. With
Another factor vho have somehow escaped dwarven their higher chances for finding secret
ustice-and such characters are the doors, and superior senses in general,
to consider when you create the person- n l y bounty hunters permitted to be of Elves areexcellent at gathering informa-
ality of your thief is race. Thieves are awful alignment. Other dwarven tion. Of the various thief kits, they are
one of the two A D & P game classes ,ounty hunters specialize as reposses- most likely to become spies. An elf
that are open to any race (the other is iors. They use the full range of thieves' raised in a larger human community
fighter), so there's a great deal of racial ;kills to recover stolen items; and they might be indined to take the investiga-
diversity among the ranks. ire careful to take n o t h i i else, thereby tor kit, but this is a rare situation. The
ceeping their honor and reputation im- adventurer kit is also popular, espe-
Humans are assumed to be the norm >eccable. cially for the elven thief who wishes to
throughout this book, but we'll include traverse the world in search of exotic
the occasional note when special condi- It may be dangerous to call either of knowledge. (Note that multi-class
tions or rules apply to nonhuman :hesesorts of dwarves a thief-a grave thieves cannot take a kit, however.)
thieves. nsult in dwarven culture, in which tra-
iition absolutely prohibits one dwarf Elves are careful with preparations;
Below, for instance, we have some :+om stealing from another. Theft they can have patience that amazes
observations on the behavior of thieves Nithin a dwarven community is pun- other races. They like to do research be-
of the various demihuman races. These ishable by banishment at the very least, fore a mission is undertaken, whether it
suggestions are mere guidelines, gener- and sometimes death. be a relatively simpleburglary or a dive
alizations; it is by no means required into a deep dungeun to track some pre-
that PC thieves should conformto these The prohibition does not extend to cious artifact.
models. PCs are exceptional in many stealing from other races, however (es-
ways, after all, not the least of which is pecially goblins), but s t e a l i iis still less Because of their heritage, elves are
personality. These predispositions, as than honorable and a known thief is
you might call them, may nonetheless usually viewed with caution and suspi- more likely than other thieves to recog-
be useful as a starting point for concep- cion by his neighbors. nize the value of archaic or obscure
tualizing your demihuman thief. items, such as books and artwork. (If
Dwarven thieves living outside the you are using the nonweapon profi-
Reference is made below to the types dwarven world either became tired of ciency system, you might let an elf
of "thief kits" that the various races are that suspicion, or were expelled from check information gathering or a simi-
likely to take; thief kits are fully ex- their homes for theft or another trans- lar proficiency to identify or estimate
plained in Chapter 3, starting on p. 22. gression. They still .tend to retain a the value of such an object.) An elf is
great deal of honor and the professional also more likely to know where to fence
Dwarf attitude characteristic of their race; a the ita-although he would probably
former criminal may even have learned want to keep it for himself.
Many dwarven from his crimes and youthful excesses,
and could be a very reliable compan- When elves do desire material goods,
thieves are not stealers, as such; but they are sure to be beautiful and inno-
rather experts in mechanical things,
such as locks, traps and so on, that arc

12

tive ones. Elves take a special interest
hat are long-lasting and of in-
value (art, rare books, etc.).
h enthralled by knowledge,
overly secretive. They find
exciting, and may delight

aring it with their friends.
elves are dependable. You

ly expect an elf to behave as a
nal (though he might not be

uch) or a reliable guilds-
ves prefer to be indepen-

"Prankster" and
Iseeker" are words that best de-
e the gnomish thief. He takes de-
'n stealing, not out of greed but
se it is like an exciting game-a

des and challenges, with a
prize if you succeed. Thievery
ion rather than a profession-
reader knows well how devoted
nvolved people can become with
games and recreation!
mes are fond of burglary, though

ing is difficult on account of
stature. They may be infalli-
men" (expertsat lock-opening
-disarmament), having techn-
tise comparable to dwarves',
ing more willing to put it to larce-

me have compared gnomish
eves to pack rats: Show one some-
ng shiny and interesting, and he'll
ely be so overcome by curiosity that
11 drop everything in eagerness to
cover a way to put the object of in-
est in his own little paws.
Bulky treasures, such as coins or
kward itemsthat must be fenced, are
oided by gnomes. They are collec-
s, hobbyists who like to admire their

ies: gems, jewelry and (perhaps
rite of all) fascinating magical de-

0,gnomes love to put their magic
ms to clever use. They delight more

any other race in practical jokes.
may make themselves a nuisance

I o fellow adventurers and thieving

partners; but, though embarrassing or curiosity. The average halflii is con- thugs-they prefer armed robbery,
amusing, such pranks are harmless. tent to lead a simple, safe, comfortable where no great deal of finesse, delic.3-7
And at heart, a gnome, well-treated, is life. But the thief longs to see and expe- or dexterity is required.
a most loyal and reliable adventuring rience the world beyond the hills and
companion. burrows of his home shire. Demihumans, Cities and
Guilds
Half-elf "Adventurer" is probably still too
strong a word, for even halfling thieves The entriesabove
Half-elves live have their race's characteristicshy cau- describe demihumans who were raised
between two worlds-and perhaps this tion, plus a healthy dislike for danger, among their own kind, and have picked
gives them a specialaffinity for thievery, discomfort, and uncertainty. Halflings up most of their race's cultural trap-
taking the best that both have to offer. make careful preparations whenever pings. Somedemihumans, however, are
possible, and use their skills of self- found in other settings, such as human
Some half-elves favor the world of concealment liberally. Careful scouting cities. Most such demihumans still origi-
one parent or the other, if raised and ac- is always a must, and frontal assaults nally lived among their own people, but
cepted by that parent's society. But (whether in combat or robbery) anath- some campaignsmay includesecond- or
many more are wanderers, never quite ema. even third-generation displaced demihu-
feeling at home or accepted in either so- mans. This particularlyhappens in large
ciety. Many halflings have remarkably lit- cities, where there may be ghettoes of
tle interest in money, which can be bur- demihumans, or where thieves' guilds
By seeing and understanding two di- densome (especially for a small have purposely raised demihumans in
verse cultural viewpoints, half-elvesare person). They'll take a good amount of their midst to take advantage of their
acutely aware of peoples' differencesin loot, certainly-at least enough for a races' specialabilitiesand benefits, while
point of view-and how to capitalize pleasant period of ease and comfort be- suppressingnatural and cultural inclina-
on those differences.This helps develop fore work is made mandatory-but tions (dwarvenhonor, halflii peaceful-
a well-honed ability to shade the truth they are hardly motivated by greed. ness, half-elven wanderlust, and so on).
and, combined with the elven affinity
for knowledge, makes half-elves excel- Of great puzzlement to sages is the Ghetto-born demihumans undoubt-
lent swindlers. Targets are sometimes question: Where do M f l i i get their edly still exhibit some stamp of their
further impressed by a half-elf's exotic extraordinary talent for thieves' skills? "homeland," but the tendencies are
appearance (pointed ears, lithe build, There is precious little locksmithing or weaker. In fact, a guild-raised demihu-
and so forth). metalwork found in their culture, and man's personality might hardly be rec-
thievery amongst the halflings them- ognized for what it i s , if the
It is very easy, for instance, for a half- selves is virtually unheard of-yet the conditioning was done well. (There
elf to enter a new town, find a likely tar- halfling thief has an amazing knack for could even be such oddities as a claus-
get, discover what that person needs or almost all thieves' skills. trophobic dwarf or a repressed elf.)
desires, and then appear at the target's
doorstep with a fake for sale. A half-elf Coupling this knack and the attitudes Interesting role-playing could arise
swindler will milk a town or area for just described, plus a fierce loyalty for from an alienated, city-born demihu-
however much it's worth, and move on their friends, the halfling thief is under- man thief breaking away from theguild
when things get a little too hot. Between standably in high demand for adven- that was the only parent he knew, and
towns he may link up with adventurers turing expeditions. trying to find himself in the unfamiliar
for protection (and perhaps con them, lands of his ancestors.
too), but eventuallyhe'll move on when Other Nonhuman Races
he has found new territory.
As the Dungeon
Many half-elves are loners and wan-
derers, which is not conducive to guild Master's Guide mentions (p. 15). it is
affiliation. The ties of a half-elf thief to
a guild are loose, at best, unless the possible to design new character races
character has been raised in the guild for your campaign. Someof these char-
structure and well-indoctrinatedinto its acterslikelywill end up joining the thief
mentality. class.

Halfling The races most commonly adapted
for characters are humanoid-ogres,
Sometimes por- orcs, and half-breeds of those races;
trayed as consummate burglars, half- goblins, kobolds, and possibly even
ling thieves are really motivated by hobgoblins or bugbears. As thieves,
these characters favor the kits of
* highwaymen (that is, bandits) and

14

Do you think that a city, an army, or 1. A professional thief does not bums his partners, squeals on them,
bandits, or thieves, or any other "squeal": If captured by authorities in and then skips town for some foreign
group that attempted any action in the c o u m or as a consequenceof a job, port-the offending thief could not
common, could accomplishanything he must not reveal the identities of his only expect his professional reputation
if they wronged one another? partners, fences, informants, or other to be ruined, but he had better keep an
professional contacts. eye over his shoulder, watching for as-
-Plate's Republic, Book I sassins and bounty hunters hired by his
2. A professional thief will honestly former associates, or by their friends or
One of the things that distinguishesa report how much money or valuables families.
"professional"thief from the more com- are taken in a job; he will not "burn"his
mon, vulgar variety is his understand- partners. On the other hand, there are consid-
ing, like Plato's. of the delicatebalance erable benefits for the thief who adheres
of justice that even thieves must main- 3. A mob of professional thieves will to the code. He will gain the respect and
tain among themselves to be successful. share their score equally among them- trust of his associates. He is not immune
selves, or accordingto the contribution from dishonorable thieves, who may
Many thieves wish to be regarded as of each to the job, arranged and agreed try to burn him or squeal on him; but he
professionals. It is a privileged status, upon beforehand. will have the support and approval of
indicatingsuccessand the respect of the others in exactingrevenge on those who
underworld. It can be an asset for busi- 4. A professional thief will share wrong him. Also,if he is captured and
ness, bringing more and more lucrative some of his earningswith other profes- imprisoned by authorities, he can ex-
jobs. Even in places not claimed as terri- sional thieves who have been incarcer- pect the privilege of the fix: the guild
tory by guilds, there are circles of pro- ated (to help pay fines, bribe official<, contacts (or less formal contacts) may
fessional thieves, forming the elite of etc.). arrange his release through bribes or fa-
the underworld. vors. Even if the professional does not
5. If a professional thief has valuable have accessto the money needed, other
The most basic qualificationof a pro- information (e.g., attractive targets, lo- thieves, knowing that he'd do the same
fessional is that he is recognized as such cation of traps, and the activities of the for them, will pitch in until the neces-
by other professionals. This recogn- town watch), he will share it with other sary amount has been gathered.
tion is not easy to gain. A thief must professionals.
build a reputation for excellence-for
6. Professional thieves will help one
IE~I competence, reliability, and honor another, even in spiteof personal differ-
among his business partners. ences or enmity between them.
A would-be professional also needs
to hang out in the "right spots," taverns As stated above, not all of these rules
and such establishments, particular are recognized in each circle of profes-
places where the professional clique sional thieves; but some sense of honor
gathers. There they relax, share infor- is vital to the attitude and behavior that
mation, and make contacts and ar- mark a professional and gain him rec-
rangements for professional ognitionas a "good burglar." The pen-
' cooperation with other thieves. alty for breaking the professional code
can be at least as severe as breaking the
Attitude is the first element to be law. A few transgressionsmay be over-
adopted by the aspiring professional. looked by the criminal community, but
The professional attitude says thieving a pattern of consistent disregard for the
is a business, and should be conducted code will cause a character's reputation
as neither more nor less than one. The to deteriorate. Other thieveswill not in-
professional is not contemptuous of his vite the character to be a partner in
victims; they simply failed to protect jobs; silence and cold stares will greet
their property adequately, and suffered him at his favorite social establish-
the economic consequences. ments; and fences may even refuse to
purchase the goodshe acquires. He also
Professionals develop an unwritten runs the risk of former associates
code of conduct, guidelines for behav- squealing on him.
ior. Its exact contents vary from place
to place; the only universal rule seems In the worst situation-say, a thief
to be the prohibition of "squealing." A
typical "code" is as follows, with its el-
ments listed in order of importance:

15

c+ ---CHAPTER2: Proficiencies
The use of nonweapon proficiencies Table 1:NONWEAPON PROFICIENCIES-THIEVES
in your campaign is highly recom-

mended, especially if you are going to GENERAL THIEF NJw THIEF
make use of the thief kits that we PROFICIENCIES* PROFICIENCIES' PROFICIENCIES**
present in this book. Proficiencies are

the best way to quantify the various Agriculture Ancient History Alertness' * *
talents that distinguish one thief kit Animal Handling Appraising Animal Noise
from another. Aniial Training Blmd-fighting Astrology
Artistic Ability Disguise
This chapter is entirely devoted to Blacksmithing Forgery Begging
nonweapon proficiencies. It includes a Brewing Gaming Boating***
reference table with a complete list of Carpentry Gem Cutting Endurance
proficiencies available to thieves, in- Cobbling Fast-talking
cluding several that are new. The new Cooking Juggling Fortune Telling
proficiencies are described below. Dancing Jumping Herbalism
Direction Sense Local History Hunting
New Proficiencies Etiquette Musical Instrument Information Gathering
Firebuilding Reading Lips Intimidation
Each description Fishing Locksmithing
below starts with the following infor- Heraldry Set Snares Looting
mation: the name of the proficiency, Languages, Modem Navigation
the number of slots required for its se- Leatherworking T&trope Walking Observation**
lection, the relevant character statistic Mining Tumbling
(e.g., Intelligence), the check modifier Pottery Ventriloquism
for using the proficiency, and the thief Riding, Airborne ReadinglWriting
kit($ for which this proficiency is ap- Riding, Land-based Religion
propriate (Le., required or recom- Survival
mended). Rope Use Tracking
Trailing
Thieves of any kit may choose any of Seamanship Voice Mimicry
these new proficiencies. However, if Seamstress/Tailor
the kit is not listed as appropriate in the Singing
proficiency's description, then an addi- Stonemasonry
tional proficiency slot beyond the num- Swimming
ber listed is required, just as if the Weather Sense
proficiency were restricted to another Weaving

class (cf. Player's Handbook, p. 54). *Proficiencieslisted in this column are fully described in the D & P Edition
This is why a "# of slots required is al- Player's Handbook, pp. 56-65.
ways listed, even though a given profi-

ciency may not cost any slots to thieves "These new proficienciesfor thieves are described in the text of this chapter.
who take certain kits.

Alertness *"If the DM so wishes, these may be considered general proficiencies, available
to characters of any class without additional nonweapon proficiency slot cost.
1slot, Wisdom, +1 modifier.
Required: Burglar. Animal Noise can distinguish the noise from that of
Recommended: All. the actual animal being imitated. A
1slot, Wisdom, -1modifier. failed die roll means that the sound var-
A character with this proficiency is Recommended: Bandit, Bounty ies from the correct noise in some slight
able to instinctively notice and recog- Hunter, Smuggler. way.
nize signs of a disturbance in the imme
diate vicinity, reducing by 1 in 10 the A character with this proficiency is If the die roll fails, this does not mean
character's chance of being surprised capable of imitating noises made by that all creatures hearing the noise
whenever he makes a successful profi- various animals. A successful profi- know that the sound is fake. While
ciency check. ciency check means that only magic creatures and humanoids that are very
familiar with the noise know this auto-

matically, other creatures or characters The DM may also use the proficiency difficulty or plausibility of what th
in earshot may require Wisdom checks check for specificsingleactions-e.g., a character is attempting.
to determine if they detect the fake. character in disguise as a beggar accosts
a specific NPC. h0Table 3:FAST-TALKING
Bandits and Smugglers often use this
ability for communication on the job, The begging proficiency may not be Target’s Target‘s
almost as a variant dialect of thieves’ used to force player characters to give
cant. money away: players are always free to Intel. Modifier Wisdom Modifie
decide if and how generous their char-
Begging acters are in response to supplications. 3orless n/a 3 -1
4-5 -3 0
1slot, Charisma, special modifiers. Boating 4-5 +1
Required: Beggar. 6-8 -1 +3
Recommended: Assassin, Bounty 1slot, Wisdom, +1 modifier. 9-12 0 6-8
Hunter, Burglar, Cutpurse, Spy. Recommended: Adventurer, Bounty 13-15 +1 9-12 +5
Hunter, Smuggler. 16-17 +2 13-15 n/a
IlI~Thisproficiency servestwofunctions. 18 +3 16-17
First, it allows the character to pose con- A character with boating proficiency 19 +5
vincingly as a beggar; success is auto- is needed to guide a boat down a rapid 20 n/a 18
matic, so no proficiency check needs to stream or to reduce the dangers of cap-
be made. This function is used most by sizing a canoe or kayak. In addition, a 19 +
Assassins, Bounty Hunters and Spies in character with boating proficiency can
the pursuit of their assignments. insure that a boat is propelled at its Modifiers are cumulative. Targets of
A character can also use begging to maximum speed. Intelligence 3 or less are so dim that at-
procure a very minimal daily income. tempts to fast-talk them fail automati-
(Many Cutpurses are in fact beggars Note that this proficiency is distinct cally because they can‘t follow what’s
who aren’t getting enough-and vice from Navigation and Seamanship, being said. (Creaturesthat are so stupid
which apply to shipson oceans, seas, or are easy to fool in other ways, how-
versa.) Success requires first that there at least large lakes, rather than small ever.) Targets with Intelligence of 20 or
be people to beg from-people with craft on smaller lakes and rivers. more or Wisdom of 19 or more are im-
money to give. A character in an aban- pervious to fast-talking.
doned castle or a recently pillaged vil- Endurance
lage are virtually assured of failure. Example: J u h a the Silent, spy ex-
2 slots, Constitution, 0 modifier. traordinaire, is discovered by guards as
The following modifiers are sug- Recommended: Thug. she sneaks around the emperor’s pal-
gested to the DM as guidelines. They do ace. She quickly decides to fast-tall
not consider the wealth of a locale, just This proficiency is normally re- them into believing that she is the mis
strictedto warriors. Itsdescription is on
the population density. Impoverished p. 58 of the Player’s Handbook. tress of the Steward of the palace and
regions might have greater negative she just got lost in the labyrinthine
modifiers-but then, so might affluent Fast-Talking halls. Unknown to Julina, the Steward
areas with traditions of stinginess. is an elderly, faithfully and happily-
1slot, Charisma, special modifier. married gentleman; and it is possibli
Table 2: SUGGESTED BEGGING Required: Swindler. that theguardsknow of thisreputation
Recommended: Acrobat, Adventurer,
MODIFIERS Fence, Investigator, Smupgler,Trouble- The DM assumesthe guards to have av-
shooter.
Locale Modifier erage Intelligence and Wisdom (no
Fast-talk is the art of distraction and modifier), but he adds a -3 modifier
Uninhabited/ Automatic Failure conning. If a successful proficiency because Julina’s story contradicts the
Wilderness -7 check is made, the fast-talker is able to Stewardsreputation. A ld20 roll of 7 is
Countrvside get away with whatever scam he is at- less than 10 (Julina‘s Charisma of 13
tempting. Modifiers are based on the with the -3 modifier), so she succeeds
If a proficiency check is successful, Intelligence and Wisdom of the target, The guards buy her story, and sugges
then a character is able to panhandle as shown on Table3.The DM may also that she go where she belongs immedi
enough money, goods or services that introduce modifiers according to the ately. If she failed they would call he,
day to meet his basic needs (alittle food bluff-and perhaps escort her straight
and drink, a place to sleep). to the door of the Steward and his wife!

17

Proficiencies

Fortune Telling Handbook. See also p. 26 of this book side this territory the thief does not
for information on the use of this profi- hear rumors automatically (a normal
2 slots, Charisma, +2 modifier (seebe- proficiency roll is required), and gath-
low). ciency with the assassin thief kit. eringspecificinformation suffers a pen-
Recommended: Swindler.
Hunting alty of at least -3. The DM may make
This nonweapon proficiency covers
knowledge of a variety of methods of 1slot, Wisdom, -1 modifier. it greater in truly foreign areas (e.g., a
divination-all of them fake. The thief Recommended; Bounty Hunter. thief of Waterdeep trying to gather in-
with Fortune Telling is familiar with nu- formation in Calimshan), due to great
merous devicesand methods, suchas ta- This proficiency is normally restrict- differencesin language, culture or race.
rot cards, palm reading, interpreting the ed to warriors. Its description is on p.
flight of sparrows or the arrangement of 59 of the Player's Handbook. Finally, any time a proficiency check
a sacrificed animal's entrails, and so is required for information gathering, a
forth-or at least the thief is familiar Information Gathering small investment of money for drinks,
enough with thee practices to make it bribes, and so forth must be made, or
appear that he's an authenticsoothsayer. 1slot, Intelligence, special modifiers.
Required: Beggar, Fence, Investigator, an additional penalty of - 3 is im-
(If fortune telling can make accuratepre- posed. A total of ld10 gp is typical, and
SPY. it is lost whether or not the desired in-
dictionsin the DMs campaign, this profi- Recommended: Adventurer, Assassin, formation is found. (If the information
ciency does not necessarily enable the Bounty Hunter, Burglar, Cutpurse, is still unknown, the character can con-
Smuggler, Troubleshooter.
thief to do so; it confers no magical tinue his search the next day, spending
powers.) The thief makes up the p d c - This proficiency represents the abili-
ty to gather information from the un- more money and making another profi-
tion he wishes to tell. derworld, most commonly about ciency check.) The DM is free to in-
A successful proficiency check indi- roguish "jobs" and characters. A char- crease the cost of using this proficiency
acter with this proficiency, in appropri- if it suits the campaign.
cates that the thief's customer or client ate circumstances, will be aware of any
believes the fortune he was told to be major rumors circulating among the Cramples:
authentic. If the check fails, the sham is lowlife of an area; and with a successful 1.Urlar is hanging arburu Llc
discovered in some way, or the predic- proficiency check, specific information tavern in his neighborhood when he
tion is simply not believed. If the DM about a person or place can be gath- hears rumors of a dragon to the north,
wishes, the same modifiers described recently slain as it raided a village. The
for fast-talking (above) may be used, ered. (The DM must decide how spe- dragon's cave and treasures are as yet
based on the Intelligence and Wisdom undiscovered. But some bragging ad-
of the subject and the believability of cific the information is.) venturers are said to have found a map
the fortune predicted. The following modifiers may adjust to them. Urlar's contacts provide this

Optional Rule: If a natural 1 (or an- the proficiency check: information to him automatically,
other number secretly chosen by the Characters' reaction adjustments while another PC would need to ap-
Dungeon Master before the die is proach people, talk with them, and
rolled) comes up, the event that the (based on Charisma) should benefit or probably buy them several drinks in
thief predicted actually comes true! penalize the roll, assumingcontact with order to learn of the map and treasure.
people is involved in the search.
Herbalism 2. His greed sparked, Urlar wants to
Thieves' guild members receive a bo- know who these adventurers are, so
2 slots, Intelligence, -2 modifier. nus of +2, b e c a w they are assumed to that he can steal their map and find the
Recommended: Assassin, Bounty have more and better-informed con- dragon's hoard for himself. This re-
Hunter. tacts than freelancers. Also,their "terri- quires a couple of drinks (a 2 gp invest-
tory" (below)is consideredto be that of ment); and the proficiency check has a
A knowledge of herbs, particularly the guild, not just their own area of op-
those with poisonous qualities, is of val- eration. -1penalty because of Urlar's low Cha-
ue to Assassins and Bounty Hunters.
And Scouts often learn the types and Since this proficiency depends on a risma (7). Urlar's Intelligence is 10, so
properties of plants in their wilderness network of informants and contacts, he needs to roll a 9 or lower to find out
journeys. This proficiency is normally IP the thief wiU be at a disadvantage try- who the adventurers are. If they are not
stricted to priests and wizards. Its de- ing to use it in an area other than his very well known, he may need to make
scription is on p. 59 of the Player's own territory. "Territory" refers to his additional checks to track them down
regular base of operations-a town, (findwhere they are staying, what tem-
one neighborhood of a city, or even a ples they visit, or whatever).
whole province or countryside. 0 . t -
3. Julia the Sient is hired as a spy to
infiltratethe emperois palace. She needs

18

to find an easy way in-a m e r , service a 10%bonus to their lockpicking skill, subtly askew; he may also allow char-
exit, or the like. She has an expense ac- because they are intimately familiar acters with observation to increase
count from her employersfor bribes. Her with the internal structure and working their chance of finding secret or con-
Intelligence is 14 and her modifiers are: of so many locks. cealed doors by 1in 6. The proficiency
+1 (for Charisma 13 reaction adjust- covers all the senses.
ment), +2 (thieves' guild member), and Besides troubleshooters, dwarf and
-3 (for this not b e i i her home teni- gnome thieves of any kit can take the Example: Julina is questioning a man
tory); so she must roll 14 or lower on locksmithing proficiency to fill one who claims to be a craftsman who has
ld20to get the information she needs. slot, because of the tradition of crafts worked on the palace; she is searching
manship and mechanical things in their for the most discret entrance. The DM
It's best to role-play information cultural heritages. secretly rolls an observation profi-
searches whenever possible. ciency check; it is successful. "You no-
Looting tice," he tells her, "that his hands are in
I Intimidation beautiful condition, entirely lacking
1slot, ability special, special modifier. 1 slot, Dexterity, 0 modifier. callouses." From this observation, Ju-
Required: Thu-g. Required: Burglar. lina may deduce that the man is actu-
Recommended: Bandit, Bounty Recommended: Adventurer, Bandit, ally just posing as a craftsman; he may
Hunter, Buccaneer. Buccaneer, Thug. be a con man taking advantage of a few
freed r i n k s or coins, or he could even be
This is a talent for bending people to This proficiency represents a knack a spy for her enemies.
your will by scaring the living daylights for grabbing the best loot in the shortest
out of them. NPCs who are intimidated time. For instance, a cat burglar breaks Readinflriting
are quite likely to do what they're told, into a room in a wealthy mansion. He
out of fear. On the negative side, they has about two minutes to fill his back- 1slot, Intelligence, +1 modifier.
are also very likely to harbor much re- pack, so that he can escape before Recommended: Investigator, Spy.
sentment against the character that in- guards are summoned by magical
timidates them. The NPCs will keep alarms. If his proficiency check suc- This proficiency is normally re-
their resentment hidden-until the first ceeds, he is able to recognize and stuff stricted to priests and wizards. Its de-
chance to avenge their pride arises. into his pack the most valuable combi- scription is on p. 61 of the Player's
nation of items that is feasible, given his Handbook.
Intimidation may be attempted with limitations of time and space.
one of two abilities: Strength or Cha- survival
risma. If Strength is used, the thief is Navigation
threatening immediate, personal bodily 2 slots, Intelligence, 0 modifier.
harm. If Charismais used, the intimida- 1 slot, Intelligence, -2 modifier. Required: Bandit.
tion consists of more subtle threats, Required: Buccaneer. Recommended: Bounty Hunter.
which need not be physical. If success- Recommended: Smuggler.
This proficiency is normally re-
n :ful, the NPC is convinced that the thief This proficiency is normally re- strictedto warriors. Its descriptionis on
is ready and capable of m a k i i his life stricted to priests, warriors, and wiz- p. 63 of the Player's Handbook.
miserable-if not immediately, then in ards. Its description is on p. 61 of the.
the near future. Player's Handbook. Tracking

n: Player characters are never forced to Observation 2 slots, Wisdom, 0 modifier.
submit to intimidation, as this would Required: Bounty Hunter.
detract from the players' freedom to 1 slot, Intelligence, 0modifier. Recommended: Assassin.
role-play. Required: Beggar, Cutpurse, Investiga-
tor, Spy, Swindler, Troubleshooter. This proficiency is normally re-
Locksmithing Recommended: Assassin, Bounty strictedto Warriors. Its descriptionis on
Hunter, Burgler, Fence, Smuggler. p. 64 of the Player's Handbook.
1slot, Dexterity, 0 modifier.
Recommended: Troubleshooter, dwarf Characterswith this proficiency have Trailing
and gnome thieves. cultivated exceptionally acute powers
of observation. The DM may ask for a 1slot, Dexterity, special modifiers.
This is the specialized skill of m a k i i proficiency check (or secretly roll it Required: Assassin, Cutpurse.
locks. It is treated like other"craft"pro- himself) anytime there is something Recommended: Beggar, Bounty
ficiencies when checking for success.
Also, thieves with this proficiency gain

19

ncies

Hunter, Investigator, Spy, Thug, Trou- player beforehand if you will apply spot her, hell be easier to chase ( + 2 ) .
bleshooter. modifiers (thoughyou needn't tell ex- The DM also decides that Julina has
actly what they are). been in the capital on this job long
Trailing resembles tracking, except enough that she's fairly familiar with
tracking is associated chiefly with the The DM should feel free to use situa- the streets and alleys, so she will not
wilderness, and trailing typically is tional modifiers on these rolls. For ex- suffer a penalty on that account. How-
used in major urban centers (i.e., cities ample, if a street is relatively dear, the ever, unbeknownst to Julina, the spy
and large towns). It is the talent of tail- thief should get -1 or -2 on an at- she follows has both alertness (-5modi-
ing someone-of keeping a certain d i e tempt to follow unnoticed, but +1 or fier) and trailing proficiencies (-3modi-
tance or even catching up to them, fier). This means that her first roll has
though they may be attempting to +2 if he has been seen and is chasingaf- an adjustment of -10; if it fails, the sec-
blend into a crowd, or at least get lost in ond will have an adjustment of -6. Ju-
the confusion of a street full of people. ter his subject. The opposite numbers lina's Dexterity is 17. Sheneeds to roll 7
could be used for exceptionally or lower on her first roll, but gets a 13
A proficiency check is first made to crowded situations, or at night. and fails. 'The man has spotted you,"
see if the thief is able to trail without be- says the Dungeon Master. "He speeds
ing noticed. If the person followed has For any Trailing proficiency roll, a
the alertness proficiency, then the thief -3 penalty applies if the person fol- up and ducks around a comer, into an
suffers a -5 penalty. lowed has the Trailing proficiency as alley." Julina follows; to keep from los-
well (and, presumably, knows better ing him, she needs to get an 11or lower.
If the thief is noticed, the person be- how to foil the tricks of his own trade). She rolls an 11,just barely making it.
ing followed may attempt to evade. To 'The alley is empty-you are about to
keep from losing the trail, the thief must Erample: Julma is trailing an NPC rush through to the next street, but
make another proficiency check. A though the Imperial capital, because through a window you spot a flash of
modifier from -3 to + 3 (vatying from red. like the man's coat. and hear foot-
first time in a foreign city to the thief's she suspectsthat he is spying for a rival
home neighborhood) may be used, if employer and has information that
the DM so chooses, to reflect how well would be valuable for her. It is night-
the thief knows the area. Wam the time, on a nearly deserted street. The
DM informsJuIinaof this, and says that
she'll have trouble going unnoticed ( -2
modifier on her first roll, he rules, but
does not tell her); but if her quarry does

Froficiencies

Voice Mimicry human AD&W character race, along Wizard: Ancient Languages, Astrol-
with the nonweapon proficiencies that ogy, Herbalism, Reading/Writing,
2 slots, Charisma, special modifiers. are most highly recommended because Spellcraft.
Recommended: Assassin, Spy. they reflect the demihumans' heritage.
New. Alertness, Animal Noise, Ob-
Voice mimicry is the art of convinc- Note that these proficiencies are servation.
ingly imitatingthe voices of other people. merely recommended, for the sake of
characterization. Players are not re- Because of their mixed heritage, half-
It is a very demanding skill,needing in- quired to choose from these lists for elvesmay have the full diversity of their
their demihuman thieves; nor do they human parent, or they may be inclined
tensetraining ofandpracticewith thevo- receive any as bonus nonweapon profi- to take proficiencies like those of othec
cal cords. For this reason it requires two ciencies. If a proficiency is not recom- elves (above). It probably depends on
nonweapon proficiency slots. mended for the demihuman thief's kit who raised the half-elf thief and where.
or class, it costs another proficiency
A character with voice mimicry is slot, just as it would for any other char- If the optional demi-humanproficiency
able to imitate any accent he has heard. acter.
Successis automatic unless people who bonusfor recommended proficienciesis
themselves speak in that accent are his Optional Rule: A demihuman using a used, half-elves should receive it when
listeners; in such a case, a proficiency recommended proficiency may get a they use the elven-recommended profi-
roll is required (with a +2 modifier). bonus of + 1 on any proficiency check ciencies listed above, regardless of
he may be required to roll. where they were raised.
More difficult is the imitation of a spe-
cific person's voice. To do this, the thief Nonweapon proficiency recommen- Gnomes
must, of course, be familiar with the dations are listed by category (General,
voice. A proficiency check is needed to Thief, etc.). General: Artistic Ability, Black-
determine if the imitation is detected; smithing, Brewing, Carpentry, Cob-
modifiersdepend on how well the listen- Dwarves bling, Mining, Pottery, Rope Use,
ers know the voice that is being mim- Stonemasonry.
icked. Success is of course certain if the General: Artistic Ability, Black-
listener is a stranger, someone who has smithing, Brewing, Direction Sense, Thief: Ancient History, Appraising,
never heard the original voice. To fool Fire-Building, Mining, Pottery, Rope Disguise, Forgery, Gaming, Gem Cut-
an acquaintance, there is no modifier; Use, Stonemasonry. ting, Juggling, Local History, Set
while fooling a friend of the subject is at Snares, Ventriloquism.
Thief: Ancient History, Appraising,
-2, a close friend -5, and someoneex- Blind-fighting, Gem Cutting, Set Priest: Ancient Languages, Engineer-
Snares. ing, Herbalism.
tremely close (e.g., parent or spouse-
someonewho has had closecontactwith Priest: Engineering. Warrior: Survival
Warrior; Armorer, Endurance, lands).
-the person for years) is at 7. Mountaineering, Survival (Hills,
Mountains), Weaponsmith. Wizard: Spellcraft.
This ability is often used in conjunc- New: Intimidation, Locksmithing. New: Animal Noise
tion with the disguise proficiency.
Which proficiency must be checked Elves and Half-Elves HaIflings
first depends on whether the character
is seen or heard. If the disguise first is General: Animal Handling, Artistic General: Agriculture, Brewing, Car-
successful, there is a + 5 modifier to the pentry, Cobbling, Cooking, Leather
voice mimicry-the listeners have al- Ability, Dancing, Direction Sense, Eti- working, Pottery, Seamstress/Tailo
ready accepted the appearance, so they Weaving.
are less likely to doubt the voice. If the quette, Leatherworking, Rope Use,
disguise fails, it doesn't matter how Thief; Forgery, Gaming, Juggling,
eood the voice imitation is. If the voice Seamstress/Tailor, Singing, Weather Local History, Musical Instrument, Set
Snares, Tumbling.
~ Sense, Weaving.
Priest: Healing, Herbalism.
is successfullymimicked first, it gives a Thief: Ancient History, Gaming, Wam'or: Bowyer/Fletcher.
+1 modifier to the disguise check. New: Alertness, Animal Noise, Beg
Jumping,LocalHistory, MusicalInstru- R.i~ng, Fast-Talking, Fortune Telling, Ob-
Demihumans and servation, Trailing.
ment, Set Snares, Tightrope Walking,
, Nonweapon Froficiencies
Tumbling.
Each demihuman
race has its own culture and crafts, and Priest: Healing.
these may be quantified by nonweapon
proficiencies. Below is listed each nor"'" Warnor: Animal Lore, Bowyerl

Fletcher, Hunting, Survival (Woo43

land). Trackm. "

Are you tired of playing plain, old, book, p. 53). then your kit may require chosen to fill one of the thief's open
slots. Beginning thieves should have no
pick-a-few-pockets-and-open-a-few- your thief to take a specific skill, or more than one nonweapon proficiency
that is not among those recommended
locks thieves, even if A D & P 2nd Edi- choose from a limited range of choices. or required for their kit.

tion makes them slightly more You might not be able to choose or roll So let us suppose we have a bounty
hunter named Baltrin. As a first level
interesting than their predecessors? Do randomly from among all the second- thief, Baltrin starts with three non-
weapon proficiency slots. In addition,
you want still more interest, more ary skills listed in the Player's Hand- for choosing the Bounty Hunter kit, he
gets Tracking as a bonus proficiency.
variety-but don't want to worry book. Two of his three nonweapon profi-
ciency slots must be spent on proficien-
about working out all the details your- WeaponProficiencies;If you're using cies that are recommended for his kit;
self? Then the thief kits may be just the the weapon proficiency rules from he chooses alertness and riding (land-
thing for you. AD&D2nd Edition, then your kit could based). His final slot may be filled with
require your thief to take specific any one-slot proficiency that he desires.
Here we will show you how to create weapon proficiencies. Or, he might The player chooses carpentry, deciding
and play all sorts of thieves. They are have to choose one from a limited that Baltrin came from a family of car-
presented in kits. Each kit definesa par- range; the Bandit, for instance, is re- penters.
ticular type of thief-his characten* quired to take one bludgeoning
tics, abilities, and limitations. You are weapon. A number of new nonweapon profi-
also invited to design your own kits, cienciesare mentioned in these kits. See
and we include suggestionson how you Some kits (Assassins, for example) Chapter 2, "Proficiencies," for a com-
might do this. are permitteda wider range of weapons plete listing of thief nonweapon profi-
ciencies and complete descriptions of
Kits and Thief Types than normal thieves. This, too, is noted those which are new.
under weapon proficiencies.
Each type of thief It is not recommended that you use
described in this chapter is defined by Unlike nonweapon proficiencies, be- both secondary skills and nonweapon
means of a kit, A kit is made up of the low, weapon proficienciesrequired for proficiencies. We strongly recommend
following elements, following the style a thief kit are NOT bonuses unless oth- that you use the nonweapon profi-
of the warrior kits in the AD&D 2nd erwise specified. They must be taken to ciency rules if you are going to use these
Edition Complete Fighter's Manual: fill the weapon proficiency slots nor- new guidelinesfor thief types; they give
mally given to a first level thief. the thievesmuch more color and defini-
tion, and make for a more interesting
Description: The kit explains the Nonweapon Proficiencies: If you and versatile campaign.
thief type, describing the typical ap- have chosen to use the nonweapon pro-
pearance, manner, cultural back- ficiencyrules from AD&D2nd Edition, Skill Progression: This section
ground, and use of the character in a then you will find useful the informa- each thief kit suggestswhich of the tra-
campaign. It also lists any requirements tion in each kit on what proficiencies ditional thieves' skills (pickingpockets,
necessary for a character to take the kit. are required or recommended for that etc.) are most valuable to that sort of
sort of thief. The Bounty Hunter, for in- thief. It is recommended that characters
Role: Many of these thief types arise stance, is required to take the tracking rise fastest in those skills, since they are
in particular social contexts. A Fence, proficiency; and a number of other pro- the ones that are likely to get the most
for instance, exists because other ficiencies related to wildernesssurvival practice. These are meant as
thieves need to market stolen goods. and tracking down people are recom- suggestions-the choice of how to allot
The kit will therefore describe the role mended. skill improvements ought to remain
of the Fence in his society, and may sug- the hands of the player.
gest how he might function in relation Note that required proficiencies are
to the rest of the fantasy adventure bonuses, given in addition to the non- Equipment; Some thief types tend
campaign. weapon proficiency choices that you make use of certain forms of equip-
may make as usual. Sometimesa bonus ment, either from preference or need;
Under "Role" you will also find notes proficiency will come from a group or they may be limited in what equip-
other than the General or Thief groups, ment they can carry. We will note such
on the personalitiesor backgrounds typi- but (since it is a bonus anyway) it situations. A Beggar, for instance, can't
doesn't matter how many extra slots it
cal forthievesof thiskit. Thisd e s our would otherwisebe required to occupy.

earlier discussion of "role-playing When a proficiency is only recom-
thieves," where we examined set-, SD mended in a thief kit, it is not given au-
cial background and motivations, and tomatically to the character. If the
presented a few thief archetypes. character decides to take a recom-
mended nonweapon proficiency, it is
econdary Skills: If you have chosen
o use the Secondary Skills rules from
AD&D 2nd Edition (see Player's Hand-

'rB

Thief Kits

beg very well if he's dressed in resplen- An Important Note these desto add a thief kit to existing
dent finery, with guilded armor and be- characters.)
jeweled weapons. In the following
sections, several thief kits include reac- 3. Once you've selected a thief kit, yo%
Theseequipment listingsaren't really tion bonuses and penalties as part of cannot change it.
restrictions. Rather, they reflect what their special benefits and special hin-
time and trial have proven to be most drances. A word of caution needs to ac- (Note, however, that with the flexibl
advantageous for a thief of this or that company them. way that thieves advance, you can do
variety. If the character is fulfilling his lot to make your thief look as if its k
role, the equipment will make sense; In the A D & P game, when a charac- has been changed. For instance, a Fenc
and the DM is encouraged to assist in ter is very charismatic, he gets what is may be stuck in the wilderness and n
pointing out the value of the suggested called a "reaction adjustment." ( S e e the be able to follow his "vocation" fo
equipment when a character exueri- Player's Handbook, p. 18.) When the years. But even so, he could not switc
ments with other things. to a new kit, such as Scout.)
character has a high Charisma and re-
Special Benefits: Most Before choosing a thief kit, you wil
have some special benefits that the oth- ceives a bonus, it's expressed as a plus; already have determined the chara
ers don't. These may be straightfor- +2, for instance. When he has a low ter's: ability scores (AD&D PIaye
ward special abilities. Often, however, Charismaand receives a penalty, it's ex- Handbook, Chapter l), race (Cha
they reflect the thief's relationship to his 2). class (presumably thief), and ali
society; they may be defined as special pressed as a minus; -3, for example. ment (Chapter 4). You might also hav$
reaction bonuses, special privileges in decided upon a host of background faci
lcertain cultures or regions, and so However, when you roll the 2d10 for tors, as discussed elsewhere in this
forth. A Fence, for instance, gets better encounter reactions (see the book.
reactions from other thieves (especially DUNGEON MASTER Guide, p. 103),
if they want him as a business partner), don't add the bonus ( +) or subtract the You are then ready to choose you
and also has less trouble than other thief kit. In fleshing your character ou
characters in finding thieves willing to penalty ( -) from the die roll. Do it the alongwith the thief kit, you will proba
hire out their skills. bly encounter the various other stages
other way around. If the character has of character creation, such as proficien-
Special Hindrances: Similarly, each a Charisma of 16,and thus gets a +5 des (Chapter 5 of the Player's Hand
lthief type has certain disadvantages reaction adjustment, you subtract that book, and Chapter 2 of this volume)
number from the 2d10 roll. (Otherwise money and equipment (Player's Hand
nder him, such as the reaction the NPCs would be reacting even more book, Chapter 6 ) . and so forth.
penalties of Beggars. badly because the character was charis-
matic!) The Thief Kits
Races: In the previous chapter we dis-
K i t s and the Thief Classes Following a n
cussed nonhuman thieves in general. several types of thieves represented bj
Each kit was written with the human These thief kits thief kits. Beforeallowinghis players t 8
character in mind. In a sense, demi- are designed to accompany the thief
human thieves of each race are a kit unto class; although, as you will see, they '
themselves, because of their nonhuman stretch the definition of what a "thief"
heritage. However, it is certainlypossible is. They are not appropriate for bards. choose kits for their characters, the
for demihumansto take one of these kits should review each kit and make no
(pending the Dungeon Mastefs approv- K i t s and Character Creation for himself about them.
al, of course). Before putting too much
effort into a non-human character, be There are three For each thief kit, the DM must d
sure to approve the racekit mix with rulesgoverning the thief kits: termine:

your DM. He might not appreciatedwarf 1. A character may only take one thief 1. If he will even allow this kit in h
kit. campaign.
pirates, for instance.
Under the heading "Races", we note in 2. You can only take a thief kit for your 2. What additional information
character when you first create that needs to give the players about ea
each kit special considerations for non- character. kit.
human thieves: races recommended (or
the opposite)for that kit, and any spedal (Thisrule has one exception: If DM and 3. What changes he might wish t
,modificationsthat might apply if a non- players decide to integrate these rules make to each kit.
human character is used. with an existing campaign, and both
DM and players can agree on which Let's take the Beggar kit as an exa
thief kit would be appropriate for each ple. In most fantasy campaigns this k
existing character, then you may use

I 13

r

' Thief Kit Ability Move Hidein Detect CUmb Read feat of manual dexterity is determined
by a pick pockets roll, and the Assassin
- Pick Open FIR Sil Shadow N- hnf or Bounty Hunter gets +5% on the
Pockets' Locks Trap* roll. This special bonus does not apply,
however, to pickpocketing or other
----- tasks covered by this ability.

Bandit -5% 4. In the wilderness, the bandit gets
Beggar
+5%to this ability.

Example: Urlar is a beginning gnome

Buccaneer thief with a Dexterity of 17. He decides

Burglar to adopt the Burglar kit. Using Tables

Cutpurse 26,27and 28 from page 39 of the Play-

Fence er's Handbook and Table 4 , above,

F Urlar computes his skills as shown in

Investigah

scout Table 5.

Smuggler Ib Urlar now may distribute an ad

SPY - - -10% tional 60 discretionary percentage
Swashbuckler - -5% -
Swindler - -- points among the total base scores,
Thug

Troubleshooter -10% +5% +5% with no more than30such points being

assigned to any single skill, as ex-

would be acceptable, at least in con- plained in the Player: Handbook, page
cept; although it is not inconceivable
that one state might be so benign as to stance, would need to be better (or at 38.
provide for all its needy-or so harsh as
to keep them off the streets forcibly. least would have more practice) at de-

Assuming the DM says that yes, the tecting noise than a Fence. To reflect the Aaobat
Beggar kit will exist in his campaign, he
needs to decide which details are spe- predispositions of the various kits, use Description: Acrobats are related
cific to the Beggars of his world. What Table 4 for beginning thieves. This ta- bards, as both ostensibly have the pro-
ble is just like Tables 27 and 28 (Thiev-
causes people to be Beggars? In a pre- ing Skill Racial Adjustments and Fession of entertaining others. Some
dominantly lawful evil society, for ex- Thieving SkiU Dexterity Adjustments) would say they do this to avoid "real"
on page 39 of the Player's Handbook,
ample, there may be a class of people and is cumulative with any bonuses or work. And both characters are wont to
that is systematically oppressed. (This penalties derived from those tables.
sort of society, by the way, is a perfect support themselves by unorthodox
setting for thief player characters, After the adjustments have been to-
whose campaign goal can be to over- talled, the thief may distribute his dis- means when there's a slump in th '
throw the oppresive system.) The DM cretionary points. There normally are "regular" business.
should inform the players of all these 60 discretionary points to distribute
details specific to his campaign. (seePlayer: Handbook, p. 38). Some Because of the physical demands
thief kits may not have asmany discre- their vocation, Acrobats must have
Finally, after the DM has decided on tionary points to distribute as bepin- m i n i u m scores of 12 in Strength
all the details, he should go back ning characters. The Assassin, for
through the thief kits as they are pre- 14 in Dexterity.
sented here and adjust them as he sees instance, gets only 40 points instead of Role: Even Acrobats who are not m-
fit. 60.
dined toward larcenous behavior are
Thief Kits and Thieving Skills rarely looked up to by the rest of their
aciety. People who become Acrobats
(Optlond Rules) x actors often were born into the mid-
Ile class, though their status actually
Because of their
specializations, thieves of the various NOTES To TABLE 4 wcomes Ipwer. The middle class de-
kits differ in their aptitudes for various
standard thieves' skills. A Spy, for in- 1. Includes similar feats of manual ights most in the [email protected] The

dexterity, such as legerdemain and slip- ower classes are usually too busy

ping poison (seealso note 3,below). itruggli to survive, and may be tied

2. This ability may also be used in o their land or profession in the man-

the placement of traps. ier of serfs. The nobility and wealthy

3. Assassinsand Bounty Hunters are m p l e are "above" the crude entertain-

adept at slipping foreign substances nent of the crowd; and even if they

(poison, sedative, etc.) into the food or night see a circuson occasion, it would

drink of their targets. Success in such a socially i m m s i b l e to join it.

24

xcept in unusual circumstances, Table 5: URLARS SKILL ADJUSTMENTS
n, Acrobatswill come from the mi&
Skill Base R a d Dexterity Kit TOTAL
s. A player character might tn Score BASE
Adi. Adi. Ad SKILL
t, if a player wishes, but he will
a plausible explanation of the situ- Open Lock

cause of the social disgrace, it Find/Remove Traps
that any entertainer from
or noble class will be dis Move Silentlv

hen, many people who seek em- Hide in Shadows 5%
yment as entertainers didn't leave
ir previous lives out of choice, any- Detect Noise 15%

A noble-born Acrobat was proba- Climb Walls 60% -15% 0% +5% 50%
isowned (or worse) before he took
that profession, and might even Read Languages 0% 0% 0% -5% -5%
assumed a new identity. Acrobats
other backgrounds may have h i s Iets of the audience when he is not actu- mischievous gnomes entertaining a
es, too -things to hide, and ene- ally performin-g. crowd.
'es to fear. One thing they like about
e circus is that nobody presumes to Equipment: In order to make use of Dwarf characters, then, aught not tc
ove anyone else's mask or make-up.
he circus may indeed get its own their Acrobatic skills, Acrobats favor take this kit. Halflings m d gnome!
istory. Run by a competent swindler, a
'rcus may make piles of money from the least and l i i t e s t equipment possi- may, if they so desire, but hhey do not
ullible spectators. It could bring in
en more by having its own Cut- ble. If the optional encumbrance rules gain the bonuses listed under "Special
ses, who are permitted to work the
wds so long as they give a percent- [Player's Handbook. pp. 76-79) are Benefits" for jumping and tightrop!
f their take to the circus manage-
used, Acrobatsshould not be permitted w a l k i i . (Theydo receive the tu
obats are almost always wander-
small town quickly tires of its en- more than light encumbrance. Acro- bonus.)
tainers, so they must move on to the
t, where their tricks and displays bats may encumber themselvesmore in
y be considered new and impressive. special situations (e.g., carrying a Adventurer
Secondary Skills: Any.
WeaponProficiencies: Acrobatsmay wounded comrade to safety, hauling a Desrriph'on: The Adventurer is tht
se any weapon normally permitted to great hoard of treasure) but they will jack-of-all-trades, the prototypica
hieves. Note, however, that they will invariably seek to divest themselves of dungeon-ddvinpthief.The Adventure]
sually avoid those that are heavy and the excess weight at the first opportu- is not so much a thief as a charactel
umbersome (see "Equipment" below). nity.
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required:
one. Recommended: Alertness, Dis- Special Benefits: The abilities of takes Of the gener?l
uise, Fast-Talking, Juggling, Musical thiefly skillson professionahadventures
tumbling, and tightrope
trument, Riding, Rope Use,Ventril- into dungeon and wilderness. The Ad
walking areso crucial to this kit that the
ill Progression: Among the basic venturer thief kit has no rdquirements
hieves' skills, climbing walls is the one Acrobat should be able to have them as
beyond those Of the thief C ~ I S Sitself.
st applicable to the Acrobat's overt pecial abilitieseven if the DM has
fession. Their lightness of step leads Role: Adventurer-kit thieves usually
o excellence in moving silently, so this en not to use the nonweapon profi-
serve in parties of brave adi.enturers of
Is0 is likely to improverapidly. Fi- iency system. l+ther, hauofstheeir
many an Acrobat supplements various classes. Their specj~alskills arc
circus income by picking the pock- ntense training with these skills, Acro-
vital in supporting any sucaessful e x p
pats should get a bonus of +1 when-
dition into wilderness or dungeon. The
ver a proficiency check is required.
professional Adventurer is, further
-hisbonus is +2 if heAcrobat is wear.
more, preferred by many adventuriq
ng no armor (and, under the optional
parties. because he is much less like13
ncumbrance rules,is unencumbered).
than other thieves to betnay or s
Special Hindrances: None.
from his own companions.The success-
Races: The shorter races-halfli,
ful Adventurerknows the vplue of trus
pomes, and particularly dwarw-
and cooperation, while mqny a "stre
,hen have difficulty with Acrobatic
thief" has been raised on dhplicity and
eats, on account of their body size and
(sometimesliteral) backstabbing.
mild. Dwarves, in addition, rarely
Many Adventurers are neutral or
lave a temperament that would endear
lawful. Few are evil, and almost none
hem to a circus show; though one can
halningasnd that is chaotic evil can survive for long
,asily imagine

25

Thief Kits

let alone prosper in his ways. Dexterity 12, and Intelligence 11. ing, Herbalism, Land-Based Riding,
Adventurers may be part of a Role. Thugs and Bounty Hunters Observation, Tracking, Voice Mimicry.

thieves’ guild for easy access to equip- may be seen as close relatives of the As- Skill Progression: Assassins favor
ment and training. They tend to be in- sassin. It is important, then, to under- the skills of move silently, hide in
dependent, however, and dislike guilds stand their differences, and what makes shadows, detect noise and climb walls.
that have demands beyond a simple their roles distinct. Thugs typically They also make occasional use of the
membership fee. serve as crude muscle. using bullying pick pockets skill-not for lifting
and intimidation. The Assassin,on the purses, but for similarly delicate tasks,
SecondarySkills: Any. other hand, thrives on anonymity, on such as slipping poison unnoticed into
Weapon Proficiencies: Any. surprise-on his victim not even realiz- a target’s goblet of wine.
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: ing that he is a target until it is much
None. Recommended: Player’s choice; too late. A clever Assassin might never Equipment: Assassins are familiar
among those that may be selected are be seen by his victim. Here, too, the with and make frequent use of a wide
Alertness, Boating, Fast-talking, Infor- Assassin differs from the Bounty array of deadly devices. See Chapter 5
mation Gathering, and Looting. Hunter, for the hunter often seeks his (page90)for details on all sorts of spe-
Skill Progression: Adventurer quarry alive, and typically must bring cial items, such as blade boots, death
thieves tend to spread their skill im- back his prey (or the corpse thereof) as knives, folding bows, and so forth.
provementsas evenly as possible, to al- proof of his project’s success. Equipment to help their preferred skills
low them to deal with the many (see”SkillProgression” above), such as
differentchallenges the adventuring life Most Assassins are of evil alignment. clawed shoes and gloves and camou-
presents. If there is any concentration, However, it is conceivable that one flaged clothing, is also popular.
it is usually on opening locks or finding might be of a neutral (but not good)
alignment. Playercharacter Assassins, If the DM permits, poison is also
and removing traps, since these skills if they are permitted in the campaign, available and frequently used by the
best fit this rare neutral description. A Assassin. The Assassin may purchase
are probably used most often. PC might be the agent of some mon- poison (expensive and usually illegal),
Equipment: Adventurers are typi- arch, paid to arrange the discreet de- or attempt to manufacture or extract it
mise of those who threaten the himself (which can be dangerous as
cally very gadget-oriented, delighting kingdom‘s safety. While this certainly is well; see the special section on poison
in new ways to bypass monsters and not good (in the moral sense), the char- in Chapter 7 for more information).
raid their lairs. They also may have a acter might regard it as a justifiable evil
good bit of money, from successfulven- because of the deaths the action pre- Special Benefits: Because of their
tures, to reinvest in equipment. vents by obstructing rebellion, inva- training and experiencewith the use of
sion, or whatever. poisons, Assassins also can identify
Special Benefits: None. poisons used by others. The base
Special Hindrances: None. Many Assassin thieves belong to chance of doing so is the Assassin’s
Races: Any. guilds. The guilds use them to serve level multiplied by 5%.
their own needs,and act as an interme
Assassin diary for outsiders who wish to take Assassins with intelligence of 13-15
out a contract on someone‘slife. get a +5% bonus on the attempt; 16-
Description; In any reasonably cor- 17, a +IO% bonus; and 18, +15%.
rupt culture, there are those who wish SecondarySkills: Any. Further adjustmentsdepend on how the
to eliminate someonewhose very exist- Assassin attempts the identification:
ence stands in the way of their plans. To Weapon Proficiencies:Becauseof their sight, smell, taste, or symptoms.
serve them there are Assassins: trained specialization in the art of killing, Assas
killers whose services are for hire. Sight means examination of the poi-
sins, unlikethieves of other kits, are per- son or poisoned article. Many poisons
In the AD&[email protected] Edition Players’ mitted the use of any weapon. An have a distinctive appearance, or they
Handbook, the idea of an assassin, a Assassii often selects one favored weap may have a corrosive or discoloring ef-
hired killer, has been divorced from on, such as a garotte or serrated dagger fect on metals, foods, etc. Identifica-
any particular character class. Indeed, (oreven something exotic, such as blow- tion by sight has a -20% modifier. Its
a character can be any class and still be gun darts with an exotic insea poison advantage is that the Assassin needn’t
an assassin: this thief kit simply shows from a distant jungle), to use for his kill- worry about poisoning himself in the
how a thief can be converted into an ef- ings. If the Assassin achiwesinfamy,the process.
ficient, discreet killer. Characters of marks of this weapon may become
other classes still can (and often will) be known as a sort of ”callingcard:’ -A poison may also be identified by its
assassins, so it would be best not to let
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: odor. This carries a 15% penalty. Fur-
down one’s guard . . .
Trailing, Disguise. Recommended: Al- thermore, if it is an ingested or contact
Assassins must have the following poison, there is a 10% chance that the
minimum ability scores: Strength 12, ertness, Be&,-- Information Gather- Assassin will be affected by the poison,

ough at half strength (i.e., no effect if NPCs who are aware of his profession. however-providing some training, in-
e saving throw is successful, and if it's Races: In theory, any race could have 'imidating nonmembers who operate in
t, normal save damageis applied-see their "territory" (including humanoids
e Dungeon Master's Guide, p. 73). Assassins. The DM may wish to forbid and the like), and so forth. A few Ban-
Taste is a fairly reliable, if dangerous, elven, gnome and h a l f l i Assassins, s t groups may actually have connec-
ethod of identifying a poison. It car- however, since this profession is quite tions to a bip city guild, though such
s a -5% penalty. After dabbing a antithetical to their cultures. ties would probably be very loose (per-
ny bit on his tongue, the Assassin spits haps occasional cooperation, rather
out. There is still a chance that the Bandit than subsenrience).
oison will affect the Assassin: 25% for
jected poison, 75% for ingested, and Description: Travel is rarely a safe af- Bandits rarely have pleasant reasons
0% for contact. The poison's effects, For pursuing their lifestyles. Most have
any, are half strength (see above). fair in the medieval fantasy setting, a history better left behind, and many
The most certain way of identifying a whether one traverses the forbid* have a price (or three) on their heads in
wilderness or the pastoral countryside. some place or another. The average
son is by its symptom(nopenalty on Beside the dangers of nature and Bandit would be better off outside the
attempt). The drawback of this fantastic menaces, such as dragons and wilderness, but with enemies and au-
giants, there are humans who prey on thorities elsewhere, it is the closest
thod is of course that you need a poi- their journeying kin. Almost every available t h i to a sanctuary.
ned character to examine. stretch of road near civilization is
claimed by one or more bands of Bandits can expect less than mercy at
n Assassin with herbalism profi- highwaymen, and even the far wilder- the hands of the law. As if Banditry it-
cy gets a +5% identification bonus ness may hide the strongholds of rob- self wasn't punishable, most of these
ecause of his knowledge of toxins ex- bers. thieves already have a few major crimes
acted from plants. An Assassin with under their belt. But, like a city guild,
Bandits must be strong and hardy to Bandits can work out arrangements
ealing proficiency gets a +10%bonus withstand the harsh forces of nature, with local military and civilian authori-
the people who seek their destruction, ties. In exchange for bribes and a cut of
any case. These bonuses are not cu- and even each other. Thievesmust have the take, Bandits may gamer informa-
minimum scores of 10, then, in both tion on rich targets and how best to
An attempt to identify a poison takes Strength and Constitution to be eligible avoid the punitive expeditions that may
round; be sure to keep track of time for the Bandit kit. periodically be sent against them.
sed and the onset time of the poi-
Role: Bandits are oftenvicious charac- Secondary Skills; Bowyer/Fletcher,
. If one method of identification ters, desperate, cunning,and cruel. They Farmer, Fisher, Forester, Gambler,
are prone to fight or even betray each Groom, Hunter, Leather worker,
, the next may be tried. If none of other, but two thingskeep them bound in Tailor/Weaver, TeamsterIFreighter,
he four produce an answer then the p u p s : the utter necessity of cooperation Trader/Barterer, Trapper/Furrier,
in order to survive the perils of the wil- Weaponsmith, Woodworker/Car-
cation again after he's gained an derness (let alone to be successful rob- penter.
nce level, but this is not nor- bers), and the strength of whoever has
establishedhimself as leader among them Skill Progression: The skills favored
An Assassin with by force and cunning. by Bandits are those useful for scouting
alism proficiency may attempt to and preparing ambushes-specifically,
e an antidote from scratch (see spe- Some leaders manage to weld to- dimb walls (for tree-climbing), move
gether very large groups of Bandits. In silently, and hide in shadows. Find/
Special Hindrances: Because of the some AD&[email protected], such as the remove trapsalso tends to developwith
time they spend on weapons and poi- WORLD OF [email protected] a Bandit's knowledge of snares, pits and
sons, Assassins advance more slowly in Setting, there are even kingdoms of so forth, which may be employed on
thieves' skills than thieves of other kits. Bandits. Such things are rare, however, occasion to waylay travelers.
They start with only 40 discretionary since few leaders have the Strength or
points to allocate at 1st level, and with Charisma to bind many of these Weapon Proficiencies: Bandits are
each level gained they receive only 20 thieves; or even if they do, the mob will particularly partial to heavy, brutal,
points to distribute among the skills. rarely stay together beyond the leader's bludgeoning weapons. For this reason
demise. they may use the following cudgel-like
Assassins are generally feared and weapons in addition to those normally
shunned. Therefore an Assassin suffers Bandits do not belong to guilds, as permitted to thieves: flail, mace, morn-
a - 4 reaction penalty with non-vi1 such. A large group of them, or a net- ing star and warhammer. At least one
work of cooperating groups, may be of the Bandit's initial weapon profi-
considered analogous to a guild,

27

ciency slots must be filled by a bludg- then-even races with a tradition of As a matter of survival, the Beggar
eoning weapon. Bandits must also take antipathy, although such characters are needs diverse sources of income. Few
proficiency in the knife. They not only likely to fight each other as much as the can avoid starvation solelyby the char-
use this for fighting (some among them bands targets. Humanoid and part- ity of strangers in the street. They are
regard knife-fighting as a spectator humanoid characters in particular fa- also dealers in gossip and information
sport), but as practical equipment for vor the Bandit kit. Demihuman (such as the movement and activities of
wilderness survival. Since this fills the characterswho join Bandit groups with wealthy personnages), with ears ever
two weapon proficiencies open to a other races are probably outrncts from open for any tidbit of knowledge that
thief, the Bandit is granted a third initial among their own people. may help fill their stomachs with food.
weapon proficiency slot, to fill with the Beggars will also gladly hire themselves
weapon of his choice (from among Beggar out as messengers or spies.
those permitted to thieves).
Description; Circumstances have re- Beggars also are known to cooperate
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: duced someunfortunates to such a level with other varieties of thieves, espe-
Survival (choose appropriate terrain). of poverty and helplessness that the cially Cutpurses. A favorite ruse is for
Recommended: Alertness, Animal only possible way that they can survive one or more Beggars to accost a
Handling/Training, Animal Noise, Fire- is by imploring their fellow beings to wealthy-looking person. While they
building, Intimidation, Looting, Riding, give them whatever meager scraps can distract him with their pitiful (andmore
Rope Use, Set Snares, Swimming. be spared. At least, so the Beggarwould often than not, futile) pleas for assist-
wish it to appear. ance, a slick Cutpurse relieves the vic-
Equipment: A Bandit should be well- tim of his purse. Shares of the score are
equipped for wilderness survival. Vital For a great many Beggars this is the divided among Beggars and Cutpurse.
items includeprovisions, backpack and truth; misfortune or disability have
pouches, flint and steel (whichare more dealt them sore blows, and they must Many Beggars are affiliates of the lo-
reliable than a magnifying glass for rely on the charity of individuals and a cal thieves' guild, surprisingly enough.
starting fires-especially at nightl), tin- few institutions, such as beneficent The guild makes use of them as messen-
der, a blanket, and a knife. churches, for subsistence. gers and informants. It also may have a
sort of protection racket going with
Lessvital, but often of use, are climb- But there is another class of Beggar, them: Beggars must share their score
ing equipment (crampons,pitons, etc.), which is really a particularly insidious with the local guild in exchangefor pro-
fishing gear (hooks, line, net), light variety of swindler or con artist. This
sources (candle, lantern, torch), rope, character is usually perfectly able- tection from thieves of the guild itself,
sewing needle and thread, sacks for bodied, but has taken up begging as a as well as "freehners" and rival guilds-
loot, a signal whistle, spyglass, small career, supplemented by minor theft men. Guild-affiliated Beggars also may
tent, thieves' picks, and a whetstone (so (pickpocketing and the like) and the gain some measure of protection from
you can sharpen your knife when gathering and selling of information to the local constabulary-a useful thing
there's nothing else to do). interested parties. It is with this sort of if local law prohibits panhandling.
Beggar that this kit ischieflyconcerned.
Some Bandits, finally, like to have Secondary Skills: Usually (90%)
trained animals (dogs,falcons, pigeons) The Beggar has no requirements be- none; begging itself is assumed to have
for hunting or message-carrying. To yond those of the thief class. been the character's trade or profession.
make effective use of such an animal, If a Beggar does have any secondary
animal handling proficiency is needed. Role: Thieves of this kit, professional skills,it shouldbe assumedthat for some
Beggars, were usually raised into their reason or other he lost his means of em-
Special Benefits: Because of their role. This of course means a lower (in- ployment. He may have been thrown
adeptness at ambushing, Bandits gain deed, lowest in many places!) class out of his trade guild, for instance; or
+1on their attempt to surprise in a wil- background, and meager financial re- could have been maimed so that he
derness setting. sources at best. The Beggar has other could no longer perform tasks as he did
resources, however: connections, street in the past.
Special Hindrances: Bandits are gen- smarts, a sharp eye, and diverse skills
erally despised by other characters: for cajoling passers-by out of their Weapon Proficiencies: Beggars begin
Normal people hate and fear highway- spare cash. with familiarity only with simple, inex-
men, and other types of thieves tend to pensiveweapons.The knife is a favorite,
look at them with scorn, as outcasts Effective begging requires consum- being inexpensive, easy to use, and easy
and crude robbers. For this reason, any mate skills of acting and disguise, so to conceal. Beginning thieves with the
Bandit who is recognizedas such suffers that the Beggar can present himself in
a -2 reaction penalty among non- the manner most liiely to gamer the Beggar kit should select their two profi-
Bandit NPCs. sympathy and cash of the people he ac- cient weapons from among the follow-
costs. ing: dub, dagger, dart, kniie, sling
Races: Bandits are a motley group, staff.
and any race may be found among

,thy. railing (because the thief might not lave minimum scores of 11 in every
A more sophisticated sort of Beggar dend in as well with the city's masses). ibdity except Charisma.One thing that
loesn't really matter to a tough, inde-
offers a service of some kind-singing a Special Benefits: The most valuable iendent thief like this is whether or not
Benefits of the Beggar kit are the large ieople like him.
I song, or playing a simple instrument- lumber of bonusnonweapon proficien-
in exchange for food, drink, or a few ies. These should be granted to a char- A further requirement is that the
coins. icter even if the campaign at large does 3ounty Hunter be of a nonlawful align-
Few Beggars can afford to purchase iot make use of nonweapon profi- nent. The reasons for this are discussed
armor; and even if they could, they iency rules. ,elow.
would not want to wear it, since it
would suggest that they are wealthier Special Hindrances: Beggars are Role: It is important to draw a dis-
than they would like to appear. corned by most of society. Even char- inction between the Bounty Hunter
Beggars who rise above their circum- icterswho share their wealth with Beg- md the Assassin, for their vocations
stancesmay of course equip themselves :an tend to feel a sort of disgust or ire similar.
as they see fit, although then they will ondescension, though they may try to
no longer be accepted by other Beggars iide it. Other thieves, however, recog- The Assassin is most often part of a
as one of their kind. A Beggar who ap- iize the talents and value of Beggars. arger network or organization-either
pears well-off could suffer penalties, at :or this reason, Beggars suffer -2 on re- i society of Assassins for hire, or a guild
the DMs discretion, at the following iction rolls with NPCs who aren't 3r crime family, or even a government.
proficiencies: begging (because the hieves. The Assassin is retained by that organi-
character doesn't look impoverished), ration to discreetly eliminate its ene-
information gathering (because other Furthermore, because of their impov- nies; he is strictly a killer. The Assassin
Beggars will distrust him), and even Srished background, Beggars start the dso is a predominantly urban figure,
;ame with only 3d4 gold pieces. !hough his missions may take him out
>f that setting on occasion. Most orga-
Races: Beggarsmaybe of any race. In nizations that have Assassins would
egions with a lot of bigotry, where de- deny their existence, because of the
nihumanshave difficulty finding legiti- highly illegal and unpopular nature of
nate employment, Beggars are their activities.
:ommonly demihuman. Most nonhu-
nan Beggars were forced into their po- The Bounty Hunter, by contrast, is a
iition by unfortunate circum- loner. He may be solicited directly by
itances-they were not born into it. an employer, but more often he simply
learns of a price offered for the body
Bounty Hunter (living or dead) of some person and
goes after him.
Description: The Bounty Hunter is a
ruthless mercenary, worshipping little Whiie the Assassin requires secrecy
besides the price on his target's head, and anonymity, the Bounty Hunter
recognizing few laws save the contrac- thrives on infamy. Fear lea& his prey to
make mistakes, and each such mistake
tual distinction between "kill"and "cap- brings the Bounty Hunter one step
closer to success. While an Assassin is
ture.'' He may be found serving the often hired to kill relatively normal, of-
state, capturing criminals and bringing ten unsuspecting people, the Bounty
them to justice; or he may serve the Hunter is tracking fugitives-people
shadowy lords of the underworld, who know who's after them, and are
avenging the twisted honor found therefore exceptionally desperate and
among thieves and criminals. Pursuit of dangerous.
his quarry may take him through a
thousand hostile environments, to for- Pursuit of such people may lead the
eign lands, even to alien planes. He is a Bounty Hunter to literally any place,
hunter of men. even to other planes of existence (if the
prospective reward will make the ven-
The Bounty Hunter's vocation is rip- ture worthwhile), and so the Bounty
orous and demanding at every level: Hunter becomes adept at survival and
physical, psychological, even moral. It tracking in all manner of hostile envi-
requires a sure hand and a stable mind. ronments.
To be a Bounty Hunter, a thief must
Bounty Hunters do not track only

..

is

fugitives. They may be hired to per-
form such tasks as kidnapping, freeing
kidnapped persons, or (especially at
lower levels, when they are still devel-
oping their skills) recovering stolen
property.

The law and authoritiesdo not always
look kindly upon Bounty Hunters,
though they will permit their existenceso
that they, too, may benefit from the
manhunters' expertise. For the same rea-
son, thieves' guilds tolerate the Bounty
Hunters, despite the fact that almost no
Hunter would ever join their ranks.

Secondary Skills: Any.
Weapon Proficiencies: The Bounty
Hunter is permitted the use of any
weapon. As part of his persona and
fearsome public image, a Bounty
Hunter will often gain proficiency in a
rare or bizarre weapon, such as the
khopesh sword or man-catcher. Non-
thief weapons take up two of the Boun-
ty Hunter's weapon proficiency slots,
but he is granted a bonus slot at 1st
level.
Example: Borg Tartan takes the
Bounty Hunter thief kit. This means he
has 3 initial weapon proficiency slots.
Two he fills with a nonthief weapon,
two-handed sword, and in the third he
takes the hand crossbow.
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required:
Tracking. Recommended: Alertness,
Animal Handling/Training, Animal
Noise, Boating, Direction Sense, Fire-
building, Information Gathering, Her-
balism, Hunting, Intimidation,
Observation, Riding, Set Snares, Sur-
vival, Trailing.

Skill Progression: Bounty Hunters

make frequent use of almost all thief
skills, except perhaps pick pockets.

Note that "pick pockets" includes all
sorts of delicate feats of manual dexter-
ity, such as slipping poison or a "mick-
ey" into a drink. Deadly poisoning is
more frequently the province of the A s
sassin, but a carefully placed, powerful
sedative may save a Bounty Hunter a
great deal of trouble. (To have access to
sedatives or understand their use, a
Bounty Hunter must have herbalism
proficiency.)

Thief Kits

Equipment: Besides the usual range Mutiny and piracy are both punish- Secondary Skiffs: Gambler, Limner
of thiefly equipment, Bounty Hunters able by death, and on the high seas the
take interest in items for killing and warship or merchantman of any state Painter, Navigator, Sailor, Shipwright
will gladly carry out that sentence, if Tailor/Weaver, Teamster/Freighter
I capturing their prey. Special items from riven a chance. Buccaneers will there- Trader/Barterer, Woodworker/Car
the equipment chapter, such as blade fore fight to the death, against all odds, penter.
boots, death knives, folding bows, and rather than face capture and inevitable
the like, are sometimes taken as favor- summary execution. Skill Progression: Buccaneers ma
ite weapons. A rope for holding live
prisoners is, of course, vital, and it may Buccaneers do not belong to guilds; skills than thieves of other kits. Cli
also be used for setting snares. Blinding although, like Bandits, a ship of them
powder and incapacitating poisons may be considered a nonstandard guild delicate step needed to work high abo
(paralyticones or those that make their of sorts. Sometimes groups of pirate the deck may carry over into excellen
victim ill and helpless) may also have and Buccaneer ships will even make al- at moving silently. Finally, Buccanee
value. liances, and cooperate to raid richly- favor the read languages skill-the
Bounty Hunters make little use of laden (and therefore well-defended) like to be extraordinarily adept at dec
merchantment. There may also be ri- phering the strange, secret codes ador
I deadly poisons-that is more the prov- valry among pirate groups-especially ing maps, codes that may tell a 51
ince of the stealthy Assassin. If a when one of them carries a healthy captain the location of a rival's burie
Bounty Hunter is out to kill a fugitive, cargo of booty that has not yet been treasure.
he probably won't be worrying about hidden in a safe sanctuary.
how messy it will be. Weapon Proficiencies: The D
Special Benefits: None. Buccaneerslike to have secret sanctu- wish to make classic Buccanee
Special Hindrances: None. aries, probably in a secret cove or on a
Races: Members of any race could be- tiny island. There they rest between thieves of this kit.
come Bounty Hunters. Among the non- raids, store treasure and provisions,
humans, however, those of mixed blood and plan their activities. Such sanctu- Sense, Fishing, Gambling, lntimid
(e.g., half-elves)favor it most, since they aries will have the best protection avail-
are often outsiders, loners not accepted able to the Buccaneers, possibly selves as sailors (with weapons,
by either side of their ancestry. including magical defenses.
ors, they will avoid armor-it gets
Buccaneer Related to but distinct from Bucca- the way of climbing around the riggi
neers are Privateers. These are "legiti- (double penalties on climbing roll
Description: Buccaneers are thieves mate" Buccaneers. Privateers have and also presents a problem tor som
of the high seas, plying the trade lanes received the sanction of some nation to one unfortunate enough to find hims
in search of prey. They intermix with practice piracy on the merchantmen of overboard.
and complement their piratical warrior another nation. Well known historical
cousins -to the extent that any of these examples of this include the Privateers Special Benefits: Because of their
scoundrels can be said to complement of Elizabethan England. captained by miliarity with ropes, much used in
anything. such illustrious personages as Sir Fran- nautical arts, Buccaneers gain a bo
cis Drake. These daring "sea dogs" of + 5 % on climbing rolls if ropes ar
A hardy Constitution (no less than raided gold-laden Spanish galleons as
10) is required to survive long months they returned from the New World. cesswith a thief skill, including all PO
at sea and be a Buccaneer. tive and negative modifiers, cann
While Privateers are sanctioned by exceed 95% .)
Role: Buccaneers closely resemble one nation, those on whom they prey
their land-dwelling cousins, Bandits. certainly regard them as pirates and Always be sure to consider the v
They, too, are desperate and cruel, will treat them as such if they are cap- ous climbing modifiers, explained
fiendishly cunning, and likely to have a tured. pp. 122-123 of the Players Handbo
lot of internal squabbles.
A group of NPC Buccaneers should Buccaneers also can fight from a r
Like Bandits, Buccaneers cooperate include not just thieves but a healthy (usually on a ship), so long as the
for survival and success. They also number of warriors with the pirate kit. and one hand can grasp it, and they a
have sordid pasts-pasts which will of- and perhaps a swashbuckler or two as
ten bind them together. Many a pirate well. Even a renqade mage' might be
ship used to be put to legitimateuse. but found among them. (Privateers are
its crew rose in mutiny, took the ship, even more likely to have the services of
killed everyone not party to the act. a wizard, especially one with talents in
and turned to piracy. the manipulation of water and wind.)

much better at this than other types of suffers a -2 penalty on his attack roll. not attack, but he may move at half his
characters. They get +1 on attack and Other modifiers that often come into normal rope-climbing speed. If a suc-
saving throw rolls in rope combat, + 2 cessful climbing check is made, the Buc-
on such rolls in shipboard rope combat. play are: caneer is able to add his Dexterity
Note that these adjustments should be * An off-balance defender is attacked bonus to his Armor Class for that
added to all the other modifiers-which round of combat. If unsuccessful, the
are usually negative. For instance, a withabonusof +Z.Seebelowformore thief will be off-balance the next round:
climbing character would normally get information on balance and rope com- he must spend it regaining his balance
a -2 penalty on attacks; so the Bucca- bat. (seebelow), and attacks against him are
neer's + 2 bonus merely negates this. at +2.
* A rear attack (e.g., against a char-
Use common sense when applying acter trying to climb up a rope-but Example: While plying the sea lanes,
the saving throw bonus for a Buccaneer NOT a Buccaneer climbing and dodg- a ship carrying the Buccaneer Daljo as-
in rope combat; while it would apply to ing at the same time, as explained be-
dodging a lightning bolt, it would not low) gains a + 2 bonus. saults a merchantman whose crew
apply to saving against a charm or hold refuses the Buccaneers' demand for
spell. Buccaneers additionally gain a +1 their cargo and puts up a surprising
on rope combat attacks ( + 2 if ship- amount of resistance. Daljo and his
For more information on shipboard board). and may be given the option of men board the vessel, and he findshim-
combat, see "Learning the Ropes" be- dodging (explained below). thanks to self fighting high above the deck, facing
low. their facility and frequent practice with an ugly sailor armed with a long,
rope climbing. curved dagger. Daljo himself wields a
Special Hindrances: As their exper- cutlass. Neither combatant is wearing
tise lies in rope-climbing, Buccaneers NPC sailors, also familiar with sea- armor.
suffer a penalty of -10% when they at- borne rope climbing, should, for the
tempt to climb without one. purpose of these rules, have a base The modifiers for this melee are as
climbing percentage of 65%. This per- follows: Neither gets ~aDexterity bo-
Races: Almost all Buccaneers are hu- centage does NOT apply to other sorts nus: since they are both unarmored,
man, since few demihumans and hu- of climbing (walls, mountains, etc.): in they both have AC 10. The sailor's at-
manoids are known as seafarers. The such areas a sailor is assumed to be un- tack modifiers are -2 for climbing, but
occasional half-elf might be found trained and should be treated as such. + 2 for attacking from above, so they
among a Buccaneer crew, or, even more balance out to zero. Daljo has -2 for
rarely, a half-breed or full-blooded Remember that modifiers are cumu- climbing, + 3 for being a Buccaneer
aquatic elf. For such an elf to leave his lative! climbing ropes on a ship, and -2 for at-
own people would indicate a turbulent
past indeed. Losing and Regaining Balance tacking frombelow, for a total penalty
of -1.
Learning the Ropes Any character engaged in combat on
ropes runs the risk of losing his balance. In one round of combat, suppose
(Optional Rules) Daljo is struck by the sailor's knife. He
A character who is struck by a must roll his climbing percentage to
Buccaneers often weapon, or attempts to climb in the avoid losing his balance. His base per-
find themselves fighting among the course of combat, must make a climb- centage is 75%; but thanks to his kit
ropes and masts of their ships. This sec- ing check or lose his balance.
tion of optional rules is intended to help and the situation he gets a + l o % bo-
simulate the difficulty and excitement Lost balance means that the next
of such a scenario. It may also be used round the character must either fallvol- nus. If an 85 or lower is rolled, Daljo
in other situations of rope combat. untarily or attempt to regain his bal- hangs on in spite of the situation.
ance. In either case, the character can
The basic modifiers in climbing com- perform no other action. A successful But suppose he is unsuccessful: Daljo
bat are as follows: climbing check means that the charac- has lost his balance. The next round his
ter has regained his balance. A failure actionis toattempt toregainit (theonly
* A climbing character loses all Ar- means the character has fallen (and, of alternative is to drop to the deck),
mor Class bonuses for Dexterity and course, may suffer falling damage). which he succeeds in doing, while the
shield. Don't forget, all attacks against an off- sailor strikes with a + 2 bonus. If Daljo
balance character are at +2. is struck again, he will have to make an-
* A climbing character suffers a -2 other climbing check lest he lose an-
penalty on attack, damage, and saving Optional Rule: Dodging other round of attacks or even plummet
throw rolls. to the deck below.
Thieves with the Buccaneer kit may
* A character attacking from above choose to spend a round in rope combat If the combat continues to go poorly,
gains a + 2 bonus on his attack roll. dodging. When doing so, the thief may Daljo should probably dodge blows
while retreating down the rope. The
* A character attacking from below

32

Thief Kits

sailor has the advantage when above ,ide the Burglar with innumerable iat offer excellent racial bonuses. F,
him, but once Daljo has returned safely lenefits: fencing of even the most dis-
to the deck, he can fight on an wen inctive items, connections with poten- istance, dwarves may specialize in
footing again. If the sailor does not fol- ial "business" partners, access to xkpicking and trap detection. And
low him down, however, he should not pecialized equipment, and, not least of Ives may specialize in reconnaissance
go too far-lest the sailor try to cut the dl, protection. A guild can arrange the hey sneak around and neport on the
rope above him! ix (to free an imprisonedBurglar), and resence and nature of obstacles).
wovide deterrence, protecting its Bur-
Burglar :lars from other guilds and powerful The Specialist Burglar
nminals-people who don't take kind-
Description: The consummate Bur- y to being robbed themselves, and are A broad, general range of skills is of-
ar is an expert at breaking and enter- nore likely to make hasty decisions
ibout a suspect character's guilt or in- en what adventurers choose, but for
the most difficult buildings, iocence.
ypassing walls, locks, traps and he urban Burglar, specialization is the
uardians, grabbing the best loot, and SecondarySkills: Any.
Weapon Proficiencies: Better Bur- ray to go. There are a number of rea-
aping unnoticed as stealthily as he
gars do not bring weapons with them o m for this.
The cat Burglar requires a minimum
Strength of 10 and Dexterity of 13. m a job; it only means more serious A specialized thief is simply more
xnalties if they are caught-either le-
Role: In many ways, the cat Burglar 9 1 penalties, or more immediate ones narketable. People in the underworld
is the stereotypical professional thief. ike a jumpy victim panicking and at-
He probably uses more of the tradition- acking them. On some jobs, however vant sommne excellent for a job. That
al thief skills, and more frequently, :e.g., stealing from dangerous crimi-
than any other kit. ials) a Burglar is wise to have means of nay mean a high-level generalized
self-defense. Small, quiet, concealable
Even within the ranks of Burglars, weapons are naturally favored, though hid, one who has been in the business
thieves often specialize even further. a Burglar may choose proficiency in
Some specializeby skills. A "box-man," any weapon among those normally ong enough to be good at everything.
for instance, is an expert at opening permitted to thieves.
locks, especially safes and well- 3ut it's not easy for a thief to reach that
protected chests. A cat Burglar or Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required:
second-story thief specializes in climb- Alertness, Looting. Recommended: evel. Therefore, by conaentrating on
ing walls (which can be a remarkably Begging, Information Gathering,
effective protection, especially if Jumping, Observation, Rope Use. me skill, a relatively low-level thief
ground-level entrances have people Tightrope Walking, Tumbling.
around them). Teams of Burglars who nay compete with a thieF many levels
specialize by skill often find the most Skill Progression: The vital skills of a
ligher for jobs of a certain type.
Other Burglars specialize by target. Burglar are open locks, findhemove
Jewel thieves in particular are the elite traps, move silently, hide in shadows. de- Suppose, for instance, we have a
among Burglars; the protection found tect noise and climbwalls. As mentioned
around the objects of their attention de- More, a Burglar may concentratepartic- 'box-man"-actually a woman-
mands that their skills and cleverness ularly on one of these, but he would
be honed to perfection. probably then want to be ase d y exd- lamed Annelise. By concentrating as
lent as possible in the othas.
Burglars of any background may be nany points as possible in her open
found. Even thrillseekers of the privi- Equipment: Burglars love to use s p c
leged classes may take up jewel Bur- cialized hardware to increase their ocks skill, she can have a score of 85 %
glary as a challenging, profitable, and chances of success. For a thorough ex-
ewiting pastime. amination of some specialty items at only 4th level (this does not include
available, and their effects on thief
4lmost all successful Burglars haw skills, consult the equipment chapter modifiers for race, Dexterity, armor or
ne sort of guild affiliation. In ordel later in this book.
get rid of the loot they take, they 01 kit), Since she can put no more than
irse need a fence (especially if theil Special Benefits: None.
)re is distinctive-e.g., fabulou! Special Hindrances: None. half of what she earns at each level into
ns, valuable artwork). Guilds pro Races: Members of any race may be
Burglars, and it is a favorite kit. Non- any one skill, she distributes her re-
human thieves often specialize in areas
maining points more or less evenly

among the other skills. She would

probably neglect pick pockets and read

languages, however, since they usually

are not useful to a Burglar.

Compare this to a "generalist" thief,

which adventurers tend to be: On Table

19 of the DUNGEON MASTER Guide

(Thief Average Ability Table). you can

see that Annelise's level of lockpicking

skill would not be attained before 14th

level.

Now imagine that a mob of jewel

thieves is preparing for a job. They

have diverse skills-except that they

are lousy at lock-picking. They need to

bring a box-man into their mfirosbt .oWffho-
would they choose? Well,

14th-level thief is pretty bloody rari

I3

rhief Kits

And even if one were available and mts and tipsters, ears on the streets, have connections, they may be able to
willing to work with less-experienced : a t c h i gossip and scoping out pro- purchase such items.
thieves, he would probably demand a spective targets that can then be as-
larger share of the take. Otherwise it signed to other thieves. Special Benefits: The effective pick-
would not be worth his time: He has pocket is one who can choose his target
uniformly good skills, and could prob- Cutpurses who don't belong to a carefully. He must learn to ascertain the
ably commit this robbery on his own. pild often form their own little mob. nature of a prospective victim. How
A job with which he would need assist- Such a small mob usually develops a dangerous will the attempt be? What
ance is probably well out of the range standard modus operandi (way of o p could the target do in response? And
of these thieves. ?rating),and they usethe same scam on does the chance of financial reward out
?verytarget. They may also design spe- weigh the risks involved7
Annelise, then, is a pretty attractive iial, elaborate plans for lifting a partic-
option. She might be able to climb little darly heavy purse. Cutpursesalso may In game terms, this means that the
better than a fish, but that's the cat Bur- mlist the assistance of thieves of other Cutpurse has the ability to guess the
glar's expertise; after he's mounted the dts in their operations (see the Beggar class and level of another character. If
building, he can lower a rope for the the pickpocket makes a successful ob-
less sure-footed. By offering Annelise a cit, above, for an example). servation profidency check, he can ac-
reasonable share of the loot, the other curately determine the target's
Burglars are almost assured that their Suppose, for instance, that one thief character class.
difficult lock will be opened. +as the job of accosting an affluent-
ooking stranger, whom the Cutpurses Another proficiency check can be
Cutpurse nave guessed to be an out-of-town mer- made to determine the approximate

Description: This is probably the zhant. This first thief presents himself level of the character. The DM should
most common sort of thief-the pick- roll this check secretly. If the check
pocket or shoplifter who engages in xs a street-vendor. W i l e he tries to sell
small-time larceny, usually at a level of ihe merchant a hot pastry, a second fails, the difference between the num-
meager subsistence. He often supple- thief comes by carrying a large load ber rolled and the number needed for
ments his income by working as an in- [perhaps a basket full of dirty sheets), successis how far off the character's es-
formant for the powerful figures of the which he "accidentally" drops on or timate is.
underworld (or anyone else who's will- around the merchant. In the chaos that
ing to pay). ensues, the first two thieves appear to Sometimes a Cutpurse will "check
help themerchant, picking up the fallen out" a character who is in disguise.
The Cutpurse has no requirements items and apologizing profusely; while When this happens, the Cutpurse suf-
h-yond those of the thief class. a third Cutpurse does the actual job of fers a penalty of -5 on his proficie--7
relieving the merchant of his cash. check.
Role: The Cutpurse is near the bot-
of the underworld heirarchy. His Like beggars, most Cutpurses are of Example: Gorgar the Cutpurse
lower-class background and are born eyeing an opulent-looking foreigner.
activities are not as risky as those of into their station. Gorgar succeedsin his first observation
other thieves, but are they are not as check, and determines that the man is a
profitable either. Secondary Skills: Usually (9096 ) wizard. This could be dangerous, he
none. thinks, and he tries to guess how pow-
Many Cutpurses are "freelancers,"
not associated with any thieves' guild. Weapon Proficiencies: Small, con- erful the wizard is.
Guilds, normally harsh on non- cealable weapons are ideal for Cut- Gorgar needs to roll a 13or lower for
member thieves who operate in their purses, though they are not formally
territory, pay little attention to Cut- restricted any more than thieves in gen- a successful observation check. The
purses. The profit and benefits that eral. DM rolls the dice secretly for him, and
would accrue from their membership gets a 16. This means that Gorgar's esti-
would not outweigh the trouble of try- Nonweupon Proficiencies: Required: mate will be 3 levels off.
ing to bring them into line. For this rea- Observation, Trailing, Recommended:
son many chaotic thieves, who may Alertness, Begging, Information Gath- The wizard is in fact 4th level. The
dislike the structure and limitations of ering, Trailing.
guild membership, choose the Cutpurse DM decides that, because of the mage's
kit. Skill Progression: Cutpurses natu-
rally specialize in picking pockets. Be- rich dress, Gorgar overestimates the
Cutpurses are not alwaysuncoopera- yond this, they typically favor moving character's level. 'You guess that the
tive, however. Some do join guilds, silently and hiding in shadows, as these wizard is around 7th level:' says the
which they serve primarily as inform- may increase their pickpocketing tal- DM. (Note that characters don't speak
in terms of character levels; the thief
ents. would have information in less precise
Equipment: A few special items to terms; but speakingabout levels is clear-
er for communication among players.)
aid in picking pockets are noted in the
equipment chapter (p. 90). If thieves If the DM wished, he could have de-
termined randomly if Gorgar over- or



underestimated (e.g., roll ld6; 13: heir clients, neither thievesnor buyers. Fences (that is, those lower in the net-
over, 4-6 under). rhey coordinate things from behind
he scenes, and have minor Fences to work heirarchy, with fewer contacts)
Special Hindrances: The main hin- ,enre as intermediaries. Even a close may need to make use of thiefly skills.
drance to Cutpurses is that thieves of :ontact may never have seen the faceof Picking pockets may provide a little in-
other kits look down on them, consid- 1 great Fence-at least, not knowingly. come when business is slow; its use for
ering them small-time thieves, just half 4 Fence may seuetly play the role of an
a step above Beggars. This is s o m e t h i mderlingin his own network-or even sleight-of-hand may also have value
(though it is dangerous to cheat cli-
the DM should bring out in role- hat of a rival or freelancer! ents). Opening locks and finding and

playing-Cutpurse thieves will have This may all start to sound familiar removing traps are useful skills for in-
difficulty commanding a lot of respect specting merchandise. It is not un-
in the underworld. o those who know something about known for Burglars, unable to open a
hieves' guilds.The networksof a pow- strongbox, to simply cart off the whole
Races: Cutpurses may come from &IFence look increasingly like the
any race. Half-elves and h a l f i i s par- thii and hope their Fence can get it
ticularly favor this kit; as do, to a lesser itructure of a thieves' guild. This is no
extent, elves. open. Read languages is also sometimes
loincidence. Those who are knowl- useful in examining merchandise. The
Fence +able in these matters speculate that stealth skills (move silently, etc.) have
!he thieves' guild was originally, and in some value on the street: Fences who
Description: The Fence is a black many respects still is, a black market have direct contact with their clients
marketeer, a seller of stolen or other- network made into a formal entity. may put some time into cultivating
wise illegal goods. He is almost always them, but more powerful Fences often
found in a city setting, where there are Fences may be of any social back- neglect them.
large numbersof people to serve as cus-
tomers as well as prey for the thieves ground, though wealthy and noble Equipment: Most Fences own equip-
who supply him. Fences are rare. Certainly those that do ment for examining merchandise, to
exist diligently keep their identities determine if the goods are counterfeit
A good Fence needs a sharp mind to well-hidden, for obvious reasons. The or what their value might be. A magni-
appraise people as well as goods, and to stakes must be high to daim the atten- f y i i lens, for instance, may be of use
stay ahead of the law. To take this kit, here.
therefore, a thief needs a minimum In- tion of the socially and financially el*
telligence of 12. Special Benefits: Because of his con-
vated. tacts, a Fence is probably the best per-
Role: The Fence is the lynchpin in the For example, a rich merchant may son for locating and hiring thieves and
complicated web of the black market. smugglers, especially in territory not
Thieves sell their illidt acquisitionsto the deal with stolen jewelry on the side. Or claimed by a guild.
Fence, for some amount of money below a baron may be the Secret mastermind
their actual value. The Fence then rrsells behind a network of thieves smuggling Also, Fences generally command a
the "hot" goods on the black market. If and selling contraband. The real world
the city in which he opeates is large and offers other examples-such as petty lot of respect from the underworld in
the goods are minor enough (not the dictatorswho do not only accept bribes their home territory. Unless a thief has
crown jewels of the local royalty). they and turn a blind eye to drug smugglers a serious vendetta, he will probably
but are in fact a drug lord themselves! court a Fence's favor for business rea-
may be sold directly to local buyers. If sons. Fences receive a bonus of + 3 on
The black market network transfers reactions with NPC thieves if their pro-
the Fence thinks they're "too hot," information as well as goods. Fences fession is recognized.
though, he will probably arrange to have are probably the best-informed f i i
them smuggled and sold elsewhere. of the underworld. For this reason they Special Hindrances: Fences are rela-
gain "gather intelligence" as a bonus tively prominent in the underworld.
Power for Fences is rarely measured nonweapon proficiency. (They alm re- And, unlike freelance burglars and
in terms of character level. hstead, it is ceive "appraising" as a bonus profiden- smugglers who can move from place to
a matter of the breadth of the Fence's cy, since it is vital to their vocation.) place, the Fences' black market net-
network and the reliability of his con- work requires a stable home locale, so
tacts. Of course, to acquire or retain an Secondary Skills: Gambler, Jeweler, that they can stay in touch with their
extensive network, a Fence needs much Scribe, Teamster/Freighter, Trader/ contacts. (The DM may wish to keep
cunning and experience-which may Barterer. PCs from being active Fences because
coincidentally result in a high character of thix the Fence's life is much more
level. Weapon F'roficiencies: Any. business than adventure.) This also
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: means that the local authorities may be
The most powerful Fences keep their Appraising, Information Gathering. aware of a Fence's identity and activi-
identities secret, and may never see Recommended: Alertness, Fast-talking,

Forgery, Gem Cutting, Local History,

Observation.
Skill Progression: Less powerful

ties. These authoritiesmay periodically "front" business. Interesting cloak-and- techniques, searches of computer data-
harass a minor Fence, or demand dagger-style adventures could be built
bribes, or may shake him up for infor- around an Investigator discovering, in bases for information, and so forthi
mation every once in a while. the course of his work, that the shadow would of course not be available in the
! Races: Fences may be of any race. he is following actually lurks behind his medieval fantasy setting. Still, it map
:Somedemihuman Fences prefer to deal own employer. be possible to duplicate some of the ef-
'only in certain goods. Dwarf and fects of such devices with magical
:gnomeFences, for instance, are known And of course, Investigators ostensi- items; or the DM can make liberal use
as shrewd appraisers of stolen gems and bly employed by the government, like of anachronism. Suppose Investigators
jewelry. other magistrates and officials, some- are able to dust for fingerp#ints, for ex-
times "go bad; and are bought off by a ample. A magical device that identifies
IInvestigator guild, either for information, or in ex- fingerprints might also exifit, allowing
Description: Though Investigators change for a blind eye turned toward the Investigator to learn whose prints
are listed as thieves, they are usually in guild activities. he has dusted.
fact the antithesis of criminals. Investi-
,gatorsare enforcers of law and order, Secondary Skills: Any are possible, Special Benefits: None.
Special Hindrances: Nonp.
the people who know the skills of the though it is not unusual for an Investi- Races: Investigators may be of any
thief intimatelysothat they can combat gator to have spent his entire adult life race, though they probably should be
,him. in this profession. Among the most use- of the dominant race in their area of op-
ful secondary skills for this kit are ar- eration. A dwarf would probably be
Role:Investigators can play a number morer, gambler, jeweler, limner/ best a t doing investigative work in the
of rdes. They may be private, their painter, scribe, trader/barterer, and dwarf-dominated quarter of a large
services for sale. Or they may be em- weaponsmith. city, for instance. This meafis that most
ployed by a government or organiza- Investigators would be human (a rea-
tion. In each case their skills and Weapon Proficiencies: Investigators sonable enough assumption, since hu-
activities are similar, but their roles and are permitted the normal range of man governments would be the ones to
attitudes may be divergent. weapons open to thieves. They will use them most frequently). Operations
normally carry two weapons, at least that investigate guilds with,many non-
An Investigator may be a vigilante, one of them concealed (knife, dagger, human members could of aourse make
,obsessed with uncovering crime wher- or something similarly small, perhaps much use of nonhuman Investigators,
lever it may be hiding, and stopping it. in a wrist sheath).
!Orhe may be the "private eye:' amerce- scout
,nary sort, or retained by an individual Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required:
'ororganization, and may be willing to Information Gathering, Observation. Description: A Scout is a thief, usu-
sidestep laws to better serve his client. Recommended: Alertness, Appraising,
Disguise, Fast-Talking, Heraldry, In- ally solitary, who operates in a wilder-
Some Investigators are of course in timidation, Local History, Modem Lan- ness setting. Besides working as a
the employ of some government. This guages, Reading Lips, Religion, guide, spy, or saboteur for hire in the
does not necessarily identify them as Trailing. wilderness, many Scouts are involved
'good, however. An Investigator may be in such illicit activities as poaching.
portrayed as a sort of "good guy cop," if Skill Progression: A balance of gen-
lit suits the campaign. But if the players The Scout kit has no requirements
:are running thieves (especially folk eralized skills serves Investigators well. beyond those of the thief clas.
,hero types), the Investigator could be Picking pockets is less important, of
:sinisterand evil, a perfect foil to the PC course, although you must remember Role: One might say that Scouts are
thieves' capers. that it may be useful for sleight-of- to thieves as rangers are to fighters-
hand, which may serve an Investigator. but they avoid the strict "silly ethics" of
The relationship between Investiga- Read language skills are a must for deci- the ranger class. Scouts are,notprohib-
tor thieves and guilds is not usually that phering clues: some criminals write im- ited from being good-and'in fact they
of allies. An Investigator might be em- portant information in obscure are, on the whole, a good d$al more de-
ployed by a guild, however: though languages or secret codes, and being pendable than thieves in gpneral-but
,usually a Spy, or perhaps a Trouble- able to decipher it may mean successor they have a cutthroat streak that can be
shooter, would do the guilds "investi- failure for the Investigator. Other skills dangerous and unpredict4ble. How-
gating.'' (lockpicking, trap detection and dis- ever, their rugged individbalism and
armament, and so on) are useful for harsh practical judgement often en-
In fact, an Investigator might not penetrating and examining the hideouts dears them to adventurers; and many
'even realize that he is employed by a and houses of suspects. are foundamong such steadfast, daring
'guild, if his ostensible employer is a companions.
Equipment: A lot of the technologi-
cal devices available to the modern In-
vestigator (such as fingerprinting

37

Unlike Bandits (who also operate
chiefly in the wilderness), the Scout
usually shuns the company of other
thieves, including guilds. The guilds, in
turn, care little about Scouts. Their
poaching and small-time thievery is
seen as insignificant in the eyes of the
great crime figures, especially when
compared to the trouble and expense
that would be required to identify and
to track down the elusive Scouts, to
punish them or force them to join guild
ranks. If a Scout is a guild member, ei-
ther it is a voluntary arrangement
(whereby the Scout benefits from ac-
cess to special equipment and training)
or he has spent enough "professional
time" in the city or other explicitly
guild-controlled territory that he was
"persuaded to join.

Of the many Scouts not belonging to
a guild, some have a single, consistent
employer. The rest are freelanceor mer-
cenary, serving themselves or whatever
employers may come along, taking the
best pay they can find. Or, if there's
nothing else, they steal and poach to
support themselves.

Several organizations employ Scouts
regularly, sometimes on a permanent
basis. The military, in particular, does
so; reliable Scouts, trained for recon-
naissance and sabotage, are vital to any
successful military operation. And the
key to having reliable Scouts is to have
well-trained and (most of all) happy
Scouts. A common grunt soldier can be
bullied into l i e and, if need be, forced
out into battle by the spearheads of the
rank behind him-but the Scout's mo-
dus operandi is to explore alone. Mal-
treated Scouts have more opportunities
to desert or, worse yet, betray vital in-
formation to the enemy than anyone
else in an army.

Military Scouts are carefully nur-
tured and well-nourished. They get de-
cent pay, excellent equipment, and the
best training available for their special
and important activities. The training
of military Scouts is at least as intense
and comprehensive as that of a thieves'
guild. (Sometimes, after retiring from
the army, military Scouts go on to be-

Thief K

r "T

come me most I mended: Alertness. other wilderness settings. For a dwa
ous burglars and assassins of the unde the special bonus may apply to hills
Training, Animal Lore, Animal Noise, mountains, and so forth.
A few other groups that may em
Scouts are secret societies an ,Boating, Firebuilding, Fishing, Herald- Smuggler
paramilitary groups, thieves' guilds ry, Herbalism, Hunting, Mountaineer-
that have operations across the wilder- Description: A Smuggler is a specia
ness (Scoutsmay bolster the ranks of a ing, Observation, Riding, Rope Use, ist in the illicit movement of goods, e
smuggling party, for example), and ther goods that are themselves illeg
agencies that are set up to connect di- Set Snares, Survival, Swimming, (e.g., stolen) or whose movement is
ents with guides. Such agencies are nor- Weather Sense. legal (in some countries, for example,
mally found on the edge of vast may be illegal to move gold boullio
wilderness areas that are being c o b SkiJJProgression: Stealth skills are or a Smuggler might secretly move ca
nired; such areas, with frequent explc- go to avoid paying taxes on it). The
ration by people unfamiliar with the those favored most by the Scout, and Smugglerneeds a host of practical skills
region, have enough demandfor guides members of this kit have highly trained to evade authorities, as well as connec-
that an agency can prosper on its per- senses. Therefore it would make sense tions in diverse places to acquire and
centage of the guide's fee. for these skills to improve most rap- unload his merchandise on the bla
idly: move silenty, hide in shadows, market.
As mentioned before, poaching is al- and hear noise. Climb walls also may
so an activity typical of the Scout. Ani- see considerable use (though not from Role: The Smuggler plays a vital ro
mals may be protected by royal decree, in the underworld, moving goods fro
written law, or the monopoly of a dimbing walls, per se, but me., diffs, place to place. Without the Smuggle
hunters' or furriers' guild. In medieval and so forth). Fences could only sell to local b
times, for instance, hunting was typi- which would mean they couldn't
cally reserved for the noble classes. A Equipment: No self-respecting Scout in exceptionally valuable goods.
commoner caught slaying one of "the will permit himselfto go without a ba- would greatly cut the profitabili
king's deer" could be punished by theft. Guilds themselves might not
sic assortment of wilderness survival be able to function, at least not
But when demand exceeds supply, gear: adequate clothing, rations, fire- large scale.
great incentive for the starting materials, etc. Special gear to
capture of animals. assist climbing, hiding, and moving un- There are two general methods of
detected are also favored, as well as de- protecting contraband from discovery:
may be sought for their meat, vices for hindering or diverting Either you hide the goods within the
ivory, feathers, magical transportation, or you hide the means
eye of newt), or other pursuers. (What worth is a Scout's of transportation itself. An example of
knowledge if he never reports back to the former would be a wagon or boat
ic ends. Thousands of animals in his employer?)For a fullarray of items, built with a false floor, beneath which
refer to Chapter 5, 'Tools of the Trade." the cargo is hidden. Hidden transporta-
was believed to be an tion would include sneaking oneself
Special Benefits: Due to their exten- over the city wall late at night, with a
the fantasy milieu, sive wilderness experience and exper- pack full of stolen loot to be taken to a
may be real magical qualities, and distant Fence; or, perhaps, a simple
tise, Scouts gain +IO% on two thief boat traveling late at night.
acher's quarry may be
astic. The horn of the unicorns, for skills when in the wilderness: silent Plans for hidden transportation may
movement and hiding in shadows. become elaborate. The trick is to be
room, Hunter, Teamster/Freighter, Scoutsalso have an increased chance (1 small and fast. Small makes it more dif-
der/Barterer, Trapper/Furrier, in 6 better) to surprise opponentsin the ficult to find you; fast makes it likely
OdworkerKarpenter. wilderness, because of their stealthiness that you can get through or, at least,
Weapon Proficiencies: Scouts have and careful attunement with their envi- get away, even if you are discovered.
ronment. Sometimes the best smuggling routes
the normal range of weapon proficien- go throughtreacherous territory or dif-
cies permitted to thieves. SpecialHindrances: While Scoutsare ficult terrain. This means that a Smug-
intimately familiir with the wilderness, gler must be flexible. For instance, he
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: they are not so comfortable in urban may arrange to bring a canoe or even
nse, Tracking. Recom- settings. In the city, consequently, the
Scout suffers a -5% penalty on all
thieves' skills.

Races: The Scout kit is a good choice
for many demihuman rogues, since
those races often already have an apti-

tude for Wilderness adventuring. You
may wish to give demihuman Scouts a

particular orientation according to
their race. Elves for instance, as natural
forest dwellers, may have +15% when
hiding in shadows and moving silently

-

Thief Kits

smaller craft to traverse a swamp or ar- usually employ a number of Smugglers fiaences with any in particular.
ea of many small lakes and streams, just to move people and items within Nomueapon Proficiencies: Required:
portaging when necessary and leaving their own networks. They may also
the canoe behind (and hidden, of have Smugglers who specialize in deal- None. Recommended: Alertness, Animal
course)when he has passed the natural ing with other guilds; such Smugglers -Handling/Training, Animal Noise, A p
obstacles.
should have a high Charisma, because praising, Boating, Direction Sense, Dis-
If the Smugglers will pass through
dangerous territory (plagued by ban- they must serve as diplomats as well as guise, Fast-talking, Forgery, Information
dits, humanoids or monsters, for in- businessmen. Finally, there are Gathering, Navigation, Observation,
stance), it is best to work out some freelanceSmugglers. They may operate
means of protection: Either bring along between guilds, between guilds and Rope Use,Seamanship, Swimming.
a couple of thugs or mercenaries for the freelance fences, or, on rare occasion,
difficult parts, or pay "protection solely among freelance fences. Skill Progression: Detecting noke is
money" to the dangerousparties. Most probably the most useful of the tradi-
bandits or humanoids, and even intelli- Remember that a Smuggler operates tional thieves' skills for the Smuggler.
gent monsters, would be perfectly hap- between fences; he rarely, if ever, deals After that, hiding in shadows and silent
py to let Smugglers through in return directly with thieves or non- movement probably see a lot of use.
for a cut of their merchandise. "wholesale" customers. The fence or Pickpocketing would be least utilized in
guild works out deals with prospective smuggling.
Or they may tell the Smugglers that buyer fences, and then hires the Smug-
they can pass safely through, and then gler to make the delivery. Equipment: Two items are essential
renege on the deal. to the Smuggler's vocation: means of
Secondary Skills: Farmer, Fisher, transportation, and means of protect-
For such a situation, it is best for the Forester, Gambler, Groom, Hunter, ing the contraband from discovery.
Smuggler to have some powerful mus- Jeweler, Navigator, Sailor, Teamster/
cle behind him-like a guild. A great Freighter, Trader/Barterer, Trapper/ Transportation is usually very basic:
many Smugglers are part of guilds. Furrier. wagon or horse for land, boat for wa-
Guilds that operate in more than one ter, and so forth. More elaborate smug-
urban center, or in the countryside, Weapon Proficiencies:Smugglershave gling plans in the fantasy setting may
the n o d range of weapons open to include air transportation-imagine a
thieves, and aw not required to take prc- Smuggler who secrets stolen gems out
of a city, late OR moonless nights, by
griffon1

Items from the ”Evasions”section of :mements to a rival kingdom, or a ing don’t have all the fancy gadgetry of
:hechapter on equipment (p. 90) are of reacherous castle steward). Most of their modem counterparts. They may
great use to the Smuggler. Marbles (if hese characters would not be of the ?quipthemselves liberally with what is
:he surface is right) or caltrops can do spy rogue kit, since spying is second- wailable, however, such as boots with
nuch to hamper pursuers, and aniseed ary; the focus of their life is (or at least hidden compartments in the soles,
>r dog pepper can throw dogs off the Mas) something else. thieves’ equipment, and so forth. See
:rail. the later chapter on equipment for a
But there are also talented individ- host of ideas.
Special Benefits: Smugglers must be i d s ready to go anywhere, risk any
:xceptionally alert; they therefore get a langer, and encounter a lot of excite- SpecialBenefits: None.
nent on the way to finding the knowl- Special Hindrunces: None.
+1bonus to their surprise roll. ?dge they seek. They excel at Races: Elves and half-elves, with
nfiltration, in finding information, not their love for knowledge, are especially
Special Hindrances: None. ust in sellingwhat they know. Exciting predisposed toward this kit. However,
Races: While demihumans are not Spies, and player characters, are usu- the problem that all demihuman Spier
?rohibited from being smugglers, there dly of this sort. face is the difficulty of appearing dis-
are few that have any reason to be. guised as a member of another race.
4ny player who wishes to have a demi- The standard penalty for spying (if They thereforerisk having a rather lim-
numan smuggler should be sure to de- he crime is beyond the low levels of ited range of professional assignments.
:ail his character background so as to cpreading rumors, eavesdropping, and
iustify the kit. xoping out potential burglary targets) Swashbuckler , .:;,>. , E I. ,
s death, and Spies from one nation to ..‘& ’$ .*.4 (‘2
5PY mother can hardly expect anything in Description: Part a t r %at, par1
:he line of “diplomaticimmunity.”
Description: The Spy is a gatherer of swordsman, part wit, and entirely r o
information. At the lowest level, he is a Secondary Skills: Any.
iommon informant, an eavesdropper Weapon Proficiencies: The normal guish -this is the Swashbuckler. He i>
with his ears open for salable informa- range of weapons open for thieves‘pro-
tion. The expert Spy is hired by guilds ficiencies applies to Spies as well, and a sophisticated city-dweller, the epit.
and governments to infiltrate oppo- they are not required to take any in
nents’buildings and ranks to find vital, particular. A Spy can use nonthief ome of charm and grace.
secret knowledge. weapons (for the purpose of disguises),
but cannot take proficiency in them. Both the warrior and thief classe!
To take the Spy kit, a thief must have Example: To help impersonate a cas-
a minimum Intelligence of 11. tle guard, a Spy carries a halberd. He have Swashbucklers(see the Complets
could use it combat, but he would suf-
Role: Spies are vital in supporting fer a nonproficiency penalty. To in- Fighter? Handbook for details on the
iany large organization such as a guild crease his chances of success, he would
lor government. Information is the key probably switch to a different, familiar warrior Swashbuckler), but they have
to success, whether thieves are prepar- weapon-even a dagger or knife-
unless circumstances prohibit it (e.g., certain differences. These difference!
~ people around him would be surprised
to see him not using the halberd, and serve, among other purposes, as an ex
I .ing for a burglary or a nation is prepar- might thereby see through the dis-
guise). ample of how the Dungeon Master ma)
~ Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required:
Disguise, Information Gathering, Ob- m o d i appropriate kits from one clax
ing for war, and the Spy‘s role is to servation. Recommended: Alertness,
provide that information. Begging, Etiquette, Forgery, Heraldry, and apply them to another.
Local History, ReadMWriting, Read-
Most Spies are in the permanent ing Lips, Trailing. To be a Swashbuckler, a thief mus
service of one such organization. A Skill Progression; An effwtive Spy
small number may be double (or triple) usually needs a fairly even distribution have minimum scoresof 13in Strength
agents, but that is very risky. A few are of thief skills, since his vocation can
freelance, and their main problem is bring him into any number of diverx Dexterity, Intelligence and Charisma.
this: to find employment, they must be situations.
Equipment: Spies in the medieval set- Role: This is a happy-go-lucky thief
1’ known; but if they’re known, they
have difficulty being successful. with ready wit and flashing rapier. Hi,
Spies may come from any back-
ground. A large percentage, in fact, are home is the city, where he can shim
from the lower classes, close in touch
with the word on the street and all the amidst the squalor. He is generally les,
secret channels of society. A smaller
interested than his warrior counterpar
~
in poking people with his rapier, and i
number of elite Spies exist, either in
more involved and concerned with hi
~
wild theatrics and amazing displays o
permanent positions (e.g., a count who
reports word on his liege’s troop mov- acrobatic skills. More often than not hi

also finds himself, justly or not, on th,

wrong side of the law.

The Swashbuckler is almost neve

aligned with thieves’ guilds; he prefer

to be “freelance.” Swashbucklers ivh<

journey outside the cities may aligi

themselveswith bandits or pirates,

Thief Kits

however, and with their cha 1-Straight ahead
2-Ahead, right
',1i skill, they frequently assume leader- skill-to indicate literacy and some 3--Behind, right
general education, not a profession.
1 ship. Such responsibility ill suits the 4-Straight behind
Swashbuckler, however; the details of Weapon Proficiencies: The Swash- 5--Behind, left
organizing and leading a large group buckler receivesan extra weapon profi-
6-&hind, right
will invariably set him packingin short ciency slot which must be devoted to a
order. Besides weapons, disarmament can
weapon among the following: stiletto, be attempted against magic wands or
Most Swashbucklers come from a main-gauche, rapier, and sabre. With other such devices held in one hand.
this, the Swashbudefs "weapon of
~ choice," the thief is ableto fight with the Items worn (like jewelry) or held in
THACO of a fighter of his experience two hands (includingtwo-handed weap-
wealthy or aristocratic background. level. Throughout his career, he must ons) may not be affected by a thief
devote half of his weapon proficiencies Swashbuckler with the d i m maneu-
Their skills of stealth and acrobatics to these weapons, until he has mastered ver.
the use of (i.e., gained proficiency in)
came not from survival needs, but every one. Finally, being such a romantic figure,
the Swashbuckler gains,asanaddition-
whim. This motivation typically r e Nonweapon Proficiencies:Required: al special benefit, a +2 reaction adjust-
Etiquette, Tumbling. Recommended: ment with members of the opposite sex.
mains the driving force behind the Alertness, Blind-fighting, Disguise,
Special Hindrances: Trouble seeks
Swashbuckler's career. Most of these Fast-talking, Intimidation, Jumping, out the swashbuckler. This is some-
thing that the DM will have to play
young rakes retire when they get older Navigation (if seaborne; costs 2 slots), very c a d d y if the Swashbuckler is to
be balanced with the other thief kits.
and must assume responsibilities in the Riding, Tightrope walking, Trailing. When there's another Swashbuckler
around-thief or wamor-intent on
communities (family, noble tide, busi- Skill Progression: Swashbucklers proving that he is the finest swordsman
in the world, it's the PC Swashbuckler
ness, and so forth). Many a Swash- would tend to have fairly balanced he seeksout and challenges (often in the
thief skills. This includes pickpocket- middle of some illicit activities). When
buckler has kept up his activities, ing, though that talent is more often there is a lovely lady (or handsome
utilized in the form of sleight of hand. young man, as appropriate) in distress,
however, in secret; his moonlighting she or he will naturally cross the
Equipment: The Swashbuckler must
may even be developed (usually pur- Swashbuckler's path, and pull him into
buy his weapon of choice, but other
posely) to a point of distinguishable than that may spend his gold however the tangle. When the thief is practicing
burglary on his uncle's mansion, the
alter-egos. The daytime character may he pleases. old man decides to return early from
his journey. Life conspires to make
be a foppish dandy, gruff businessman, Special Benefits: The Swashbuckler t h i i difficult for the Swashbuckler,
is permitted a special combat maneuver and the DM should always throw just a
or airheaded noblewoman.At night the little more good-natured bad luck at
when using his weapon of choice: dis- this thief type than at any other.
Swashbuckler emerges: a cunning, armament. To disarm an opponent, the
Swashbuckler must declare his inten- Races: Any demihuman who'd look
dashing, adventurous character. elegant in foppish dress, wielding a nar-
tion to do so before initiative is rolled. row blade, will work fine as a Swash-
What are the goals of the Swash- He then suffersa +1 penalty to his ini- buckler, especially elves, half-elves and
tiative roll, and a -4 penalty on his roll halflings (half-elves most of all).
buckler? For the young ones, it is usu- to hit. Dwarves and gnomes are not entirely
inappropriate, but are likely to have to
ally just thrills: a chance to break into If the Swashbuder's attack is suc- defend their honor (with duels) in the
face of numerous iokes about their cu-
the impenetrable castle, to replace the cessful,he will (normally)cause his en- rious looks.
emy's weapon to go flying out of his
Queen's necklace with a fake, to outwit
hand.
the guildmaster of thieves . . . A few RoU 2d6. The number rolled is the

have more seriousgoals (and t h e are number of feet away the weapon land-
ed. Another roll of Id6 determines the
the ones who tend to keep up their W o n the weapon goes, relative to
the disarmed character:
habit). A Swashbuckler may be a vigi-

lante, charming and witty, but driven

by an obsession for justice. His enemies

may be criminals or, in an unjust socie-

ty (where the aristocratic Swashbuck-

ler's alter-ego may be an unwilling part

of the apparatus of oppression), the au-

thorities themselves.

Secondary Skills: Most often (80%

of the time, say)a Swashbuckler has no

secondary skills, since he usually is

from a rich, foppish background. Per-

haps he has the skills of gambler or

groom (aristocraticanimals, of course),

or hunter (again, aristocratic hunting,

not survival; a Swashbuckler may

know a great deal about fox hunting,

for instance, but not how to catch a

rabbit, let alone skin one). Scribe

1

5windler ng, for instance, to observe his victim's Ioay, surely Thugs would be the
labits. For all of this, the stealth skills muscle-the large, powerful muscles.
Description: T h s is the master of de- :move silently, etc.) are invaluable. Thugs function as enforcers, intimidat-
ception; while burglars and pickpockets <eadinglanguages is also of more use to ing common people (especiallyin rack-
profit through stealth, and bandits and :he Swindler than to thieves of many eteering schemes), bodyguarding
thugsgamer their earningsthrough force, 2ther kits. important guildsmen, and carrying out
the Swindler relies on his wits. Other the guilds threats of violence often
thieves take their booty; the Swindler Equipment: A Swindler may use spe- enough to keep people suitably afraid.
cons his victim into giving it fredy. :ial equipment as props for his scams
:e.g., tarot cards for a sham fortune In fact, outside of the thieves' guild,
A minimum Charisma of 12 is re- the Thug really does not have a place.
quired of a thief to take this kit. :eller: pen, ink and paper for forgery: Most Thugs haven't the wit to become
accomplished burglars or even pick-
Role: There are numerous names for md so forth), but the specific needs pockets on their own, let alone swin-
the Swindler-confidence artist, con vary among characters, according to dlers, spies or fences. Even begging
man, mountebanke, quack, etc.-and their plans and objectives. might be denied them on account of
the scams he employs are even greater their imposing physique: A plea for
in number. Special Benefits: None. alms from a huge, muscular man tends
Special Hindrances: Non to look more like a demand backed up
Each con artist is unique, and de- Races: Half-elves make particularly by a thinly-veiled threat. The guild
velops his own mode of operation. One zood Swindlers. Other demi-humans pays them well and gives them a satisfy-
will specialize in selling bogus items, may be Swindlers as well, though they ing job: They usually need just to scare
like medicines; while another may pre- are not foun$ the living daylights out of people, and
pare long, elaborate scams to net the not even face real combat.
Ihug
i~ wealth of the affluent. The few Thugs who are not guild-
Swindlers must either operate in a Description: The Thugis the most vi- affiliated will be found as armed rob-
olent sort of thief. Assassins are killers, bers or (if they are more intelligent)
I ! .'1 large city, where there are many poten- certainly, but they depend on refine- kidnappers or hijackers.
ment and subtlety. Bounty hunters also
' tial vi"ctims (and even then they usually are willing to use violence, but are rela- Secondary skills: Most often none
1 1 target visitors to the city, especially for- tively restrained as well. The Thug, on
,eigners); or they must be wanderers, the other hand, comes as close to the (theultimate "unskilled labor. . .), or
ready to move on to a new place when wamor class as any Thief Kit.
they've made too many enemies or too perhaps Sailor.
much of the local populous has gotten Because of the kit's emphasis on phy- WeaponProficiencies: Thugsare per-
wise to their devices. sique and physical prowess, a Thug
must have a minimum ability scores of mitted an extra weapon proficiency slot
For this and other reasons, Swindlers 12 in strength and constitution. In de- at first level. They may choose non-
do not usually join thieves' guilds on a signing the character's description, a thief weapons, but to gain proficiency
permanentbasis. Out of wise deference Thug should be as physically imposing in one requirs an extra slot.
to the "local boys," however, a Swindler as possible. Furthermore, his intelli-
that begins to operate in guild temtory gence may be no higher than 12. N o w e a p o n Proficiencies: Required:
will make friendly overtures to it, and Intimidation. Recommended: Player's
perhaps offer a share in his take. A most Thugs are usually male, but this may choice; among those that may be se-
daring Swindler may even try to con be otherwise in your campaign (partic- lected are Alertness, Endurance, Loot-
ularly if your world sports an Amazon ing and Trailing.
the guild . . . tradition).
Skill Progression: There is no uni-
Secondary Skills: Any. Most often Role: Historically, the "Thugee" were form preference among Thugs for the
Gambler or Trader/Barterer. actually a cultish group of murderers distribution of points among their
found in India. The term "Thug" has thieves'skills. Note, however, that they
Weapon Proficiencies: The Swindler come to mean, however, any brutal start out with fewer points to distribute
is permitted the normal range of weap- sort of thief, such as an armed robber, than other rogues (see Special Hin-
ons open to thieves. hijacker, or goon (the latter specifically drances, below).
indicating a guild-associated Thug, an
Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: enforcer), or perhaps a kidnapper Equipment: The Thug's equipment
Fast-talking. Recommended: Alertness, (though bounty hunters are probably usually consists of the biggest, most in-
Appraising, Artistic Ability, Dancing, better at that activity). timidating weapon available. Other-
Disguise, Etiquette, Forgery, Fortune wise, it's a matter of common sense
Telling, Gaming, Local History, Obser- If one compared a guild to the human according to the job. A kidnapper, for
vation, Singing, Ventriloquism.

11 Skill Progression; The thieves' skills

of a Swindler usually are used in prepa-

~

~! ration for a con. It is often handy for
I!

8;

a A Thief Kits

Special Benefits: Because they are some sort of license. to find everything that can go wrong,
better trained in combat than other Troubleshooters are rarely guild
so it can be fixed.
thieves, Thugs receive +1 on their "to members, naturally enough, unless
they have been bought off in exchange While everythinggoing wrong has its
hit" rolls. Special Hindrances: Thugs
spend much of their early career learn- for information on the dients they've ironic professional advantage, the
ing about weapons and their use, and served. Of course, few such Trouble-
their initial training in the traditional shooterswill survive long; if they give a downside is of course that the things
thief skills suffers as a consequence. To place's security their "seal of approval:'
compensate for the extra weapon profi- and then it is broken into with ease, the that go wrong often do so to the Trou-
Troubleshooter's reputation will be
ciency slot and combat bonus, a thiefof shot, and he can expect to have more bleshooter's personal disadvantage.
than a little suspicion placed on his
the Thug kit has only 40 points to dis- shoulders. This is difficult to quantify, to define
tribute initially among his thief skills
(although he can still put up to 30 of Secondary Skills: Any. Often has as a game mechanic. Instead, the DM is
them in a single ability, if he so technical or engineering-type skills,
chooses). however, such as Armorer, Mason, encouraged to bring it in at his discre-
Miner, Navigator, Weaponsmith, or
Races: Humanoids and half- Woodworker/Carpenter. tion during play, for maximum excite-
humanoids are particularly fond of this
kit, as it emphasizes force over stealth. Weapon Proficiencies: Trouble- ment and role-playing fun. Fill the
One has more difficulty imagining shooters are permitted the normal
demi-human Thugs; dwarves might weapons open to thieves. character's life with astronomically im-
have the temperament, but the Thug
personality doesn't suit their culture, Nonweapon Proficiencies: Required: probable events and bizarre coinci-
and their small stature would might Observation. Recommended: Player's
make them look somewhat silly as choice; among those that may be select- dences.
guild enforcers (which is not to say that ed are Alertness, Fast-talking, Informa-
they would be ineffective-they'd sim- tion Gathering, Locksmithing, and The DM is by and large left on his
ply bash anyone who made thoughtless Tracing.
or snide comments about their height). own to "wing it" with this special
Skill Progression: Picking pockets
Troubleshooter and reading languages are not of much benefit/hindrance, but there are two
value to the Troubleshooter, but he will
Description: The Troubleshooter, probably seek a fairly even distribution questions for him to ask himself before
like the investigator, is often aligned among the other thief skills.
against other thieves. He has all the he brings it into play: Would this fur-
skills of the thief, but puts them to a dif- Equipment: Any Troubleshooter
ferent use: He works chiefly as a secu- worth his wages will augment his ther the plot of the adventure? Would it
rity consultant, playing the part of the thiefly talents with the best available
thief in order to test the worthiness of equipment. Remember, he wants to try be fun? At least the second question
his clients' defenses. his absolute best to break down his cli-
should be answered "yes," and it is best
Role: The Troubleshooter's profes- ent's defense-as does his client-so
sional role is rather narrowly defined, hell use whatever devices will increase if both are.
but this is to the rogues' liking. More his chances. Also, a wealthy client
than one has been known to m o o n l i t could even be persuaded to help the Furthermore, the rule to follow in de-
in other, possiblv illicit activities. They Troubleshooter acquire hard-to-find
thief equipment. ciding the specifics is: Everything

Special Benefits and Hindrances: should be balanced. For every freakish
Troubleshooters have an uncanny
mishap that works in the Trouble-
knack for . . . Well, for troubleshoot-
shooter's favor, there should be a com-
ing. If there's a glitch somewhere in a
security system, the Troubleshooter al- plementary one that works to his

ways seems to run into it. disadvantage.
In a way, the Troubleshooter is a liv-
Races: Dwarves, with their affinity
ing manifestation of "Murphy's Lad':
"If anything can go wrong, it will.'' The for the mechanical and their lawful ten-
Troubleshooter thief, of course, capi-
talizes on this professionally. His job is dencies (and their dour stoicism in the

face of all misfortune, however ludi-

crous), are the demi-humans most

dined to take this kit.

Some gnomes also may be found as

Troubleshooters; the special benefit/

hindrance of this kit suits the pranksters

well-but theiremployen would best be

on guard for practical jokes perpetrated

in the course of the assignment. The goal

of any gnome Troubleshooter should be

to turn all his mishaps asset5 nr

amusement, if not both.

Recording K i t s on the

Character Sheet

It's really
problem to record your Thief Kit on
your character record sheet. Where you
normally write down the character's

Thief Kii

class, add also his Thief Kit name. For DMs permission, within the context of ilief Kit for that thief-type.
instance, if your thief takes the cut- your campaign this halfling will be con- To design a Thief Kit, you must an-
purse kit, you would write "Thief/ sidered a fence. That is, he fills the role
Cutpurse." of a fencein the campaign world, and is iwer the followingquestions about this
regarded as such by other figuresof the iort of thief and its role in your cam-
Where you normally write his non- underworld. Only you and the DM 3aign.
weapon proficiencies, add the ones (i know that he doesn't have all the bene-
any) you got free from the Thief Kit, and fits of a true fence. Description: What is this thief type?
designate them with asterisks to indicate What literary, mythological or histori-
their bonus status. Wherever you have Thief Types and :al source is he drawn from? What spe-
;pace for notes, mark down the charac- Dual-Class Characters zial requirements are there if a
er's special benefits, hindrances, and Iharacter wishes to be one?
other facts you want to remember. The same is not
true of dual-class characters. Role: What is this thief type to be in
Thief Types and the campaign?How does his culture re-
Multi-Class Characters If a human character starts off as a gard him? How does his subculture, the
thief, he may take any of the Thief Kits underworld, regard him? Is there a spe-
The Advanced above. If, later, he decides to change zial sort of outlook he needs to have to
rhief Types options are designed to classes according to the normal Dual- belong to this thief type? And what
idd depth to a thief character. But if the ClassBenefitsand Restrictionsrules, he does this thief tend to do in a cam-
Zharacter is already multi-classed (as doesn't lose any of the benefits or hin- paign? Reading the earlier chapter on
are many demi-humans; e.g., a halfling drances of the kit he chose; he is still role-playing thieves may give you some
'ighterkhief), he doesn't really need that sort of thief. more ideas for this section.
my more depth. Therefore only single-
:lass thieves can take one of the Thief If a character starts off as some other Legal Issues: What legal penalties, if
Kits described above. character class and then, later, switches any, are there in your campaign for the
to one of the thief classes, he can chose a activitieswith which this sort of thief is
However, with the flexibility availa- Thief Kit at that time, though the DM involved? A little bit of historical or lit-
ble to thieves in the A D & P 2nd Edi- may insit that certain campaign events erary research may help you get ideas,
tion game, especially with nonweapon take place in order to allow him to do or you can just make things up to suit
proficiency rules, you can very closely your campaign.
simulate a kit by carefully choosing this.
proficiencies and allotting points Secondary Skills: If you're using the
among thief skills. The character won't For instance, let us supposethat a hu- Secondary Skills system, you need to
get the special benefits of the kit (e.g., man fighter decides, later in lie, to be- determine if this thief type requires
the bonus nonweapon proficiencies), come a thief, and he wants to be an such a skiil. If no one secondary skill,
but to outward appearances, the char- Acrobat. There's nothing wrong with or limited range of secondary skills,
acter will be that type of thief. that, but the DM should insit that the should be common to all thieves of this
next several adventures deal with the type, then don't require a secondary
For instance, suppose a halfling transformation. The character could skill. But if all members of a thief type
fighter/thief wishes to be a fence. If the join a circus, perhaps, where he could seem to have a particular skill or one of
Secondary Skills system is being used, be taught the tricks of the trade. Ad- a small number of skills, then you
he should take one of those listed in the ventures should be built around this should limit the choice of characters
fence kit-Trader/Barterer, let's say. setting, and should somehow involve who select the kit to that skill or skills.
other player-characters in the cam-
As a first level thief, he receives 4 paign as well. Weapon Proficiencies: Some thief
nonweapon proficiencies (if they are types gravitate toward specificweapon
used) and selects them from the re- To better simulate the wait involved types, or are more open-ended than
quired and recommended proficiencies for the character to learn his new trade, other thieves in the range of weapons
of the kit. The required ones are Ap- the DM is within his rights to insist that that they may choose. If this is the case
praising and Information Gathering. the character not receive his Thief Kit with the thief type you are simulating,
Note that these proficiencies are NOT until he's reached second experience then make note of it in the kit.
bonuses, because the halfling is not ac- level in his new class.
tually taking the kit. His other two slots Nonweapon Proficiencies: Most
should be filled from the recommended Creating New K i t s thief types seem to have certain skills in
list; fast-talking and observation profi- common. It would be silly to have an
ciencies, perhaps. If there's a special Acrobat without jumping, tumbling
type of thief that the DM would like to and tightrope walking, for example. So
If you do all this, and have your have in his world, he can design a new you may assign up to two proficiency
slots to be given free to the character. If
it's appropriate, the proficiencies may

come from listings not appropriate to cific kit; some will have different profi- rules, "Creating a New Class:' on pages
thieves (the Priest, Warrior and Wizard ciencies, benefits and hindrances 22-23 of the Dungeon Master's Guide.
listings). Though normally the cost in attached to them.
slots for non-thief proficiencies would The emphasis of such a character
be higher, it doesn't matter if the profi- Notes: If you have any additional should still be on thieve's skills, but it
cienciesare being given for free. See the notes about the Thief Kits pertinent to may be that not all of the traditional
chapter on Proficienciesfor more infor- your campaign (such as which players skills are present. And the character
mation and new proficiencies from you'd prefer for specific kits, for exam- may have other unusual abilities as
which to choose. ple), put them here. well, cultivated to assist in his roguish
endeavors.
Skill Progression: Which of the tradi- The Thief Kit Creation
tional thieves' skillsare most important Sheet Imagine, for instance, a self-taught
to this sort of character, such that the pickpocket. He may have Pick Pockets,
character should concentrate his experi- Following is the Move Silently and Hide in Shadows,
ence on them? Thief Kit Creation Sheet. If you wish to and perhaps Climb Walls (to help get
design a new thief kit, just photocopy himself over fences or whatever when
Equipment: If a thief type is known the sheet and design your new kit upon he is pursued by an observant and an-
for having specific types of equipment, it. When you're showing the Thief Kits gry victim). But he could have no other
require of the thief that he have such above to your players, also include the thief skills; for his thieving lifestyle
equipment when he enters the cam- new kits that you have designed your- there was no need for them.
paign. If a thief seems to prefer a spe- self.
cific type of equipment, but it's not so Note how this would be different
widespread a choice that you don't feel W e "Lone Wolf": from a traditional thief specialized in
like requiring it of the character, simply Unique Thieves pickpocketing (as in, for example, the
list the types of equipment that the thief cutpurse kit): Even though he special-
prefers and recommend the character Most thieves go izes in the course of his career, the cut-
take them. through a period of training and a p purse received a core training that
prenticeship, as do legitimate trades included all the thief traditional skills-
Special Benefits: Every thief type men. They are taught by an a liberal arts education in larceny, if
could have some specialbenefit, but it's established, experiencedthief, who was you will.
not absolutely necessary. It's up to you taught by a thief before him. This goes
to choose what that benefit is, but it back untold generations, to the earliest Lone wolves often lead dangerous
should fit in with the way this thief ap- thieves who developed skills on their lives. They must be very self-reliant,
pears to function in fiction, folklore, or own and then shared them with part- and they have to find their own con-
wherever he comes from. Types of ben- ners and apprentices. Over the years tacts for scoping out jobs and fencing
efits include: Bonuses to reaction rolls the skills and techniques have been for- stolen goods. As "freelancers" they run
(especially from certain categories of malized and perfected, especiallyunder a constant and most serious risk of run-
people),bonuses on thief skill use (espe- the normalizing influence of the large ning afoul of monopolistic thieves'
cially in certain situation), and special and powerful guilds that have arisen. guilds.
abilities.
But not every thief is molded in this Guildsare oftenwary of lone wolves,
Special Hindrances: You should also way. There are always others, known who are more liiely than "established
provide a special hindrance (or hin- as "lone wolves," who developed out- thieves, with trusted contacts and reli-
drances) which limit the character side the "system" of the established un- able references, to be spies for authori-
about as much as his benefits help him, derworld. They discovered and ties or rival guilds. The lone wolf is also
especially if you have given him a Spe- developed their larcenous abilities regarded by guildsmen with a mix of
cial Benefit. Such hindrances can in- without the aid of a mentor. curiosity and contempt-and some-
clude: Penalties to reaction rolls times even admiration, if his odd mix of
(especially from certain categories of Many lone wolves resemble normal abilities proves particularly useful "in
people), inability to learn specific thieves so closely that they may be the field."
weapon or nonweapon proficiencies; treated as the very same thing, as far as
special vulnerabilities in combat or to class, abilities and restrictionsgo. A lone wolf, as we said, may be a
certain magic; or special restrictions in character class unto himself. Most such
the culture in which the character nor- However, in some cases a lone wolf classesnever have more than one mem-
mally lives. may turn out very different-perhaps ber, and when he dies his unique combi-
iifferent enough to be considered a nation of skills is forgotten; the class
Races: If there are variations to the class unto himself. To design such a ceases to be. On rare occasion a lone
kit based on the character's race, note zharacter, you may use the optional wolf may take an apprentice or two,
them here. Some races can't take a spe- and the class may be perpetuated in this
manner. (Ifyou are using the 1st edition

46

Role:

special Hindrances:
Variations Due to Race:-
Notes:

Thief Kits

AD&Dmgame, you may suppose that couple of texts of illusion mapic. tremism and fanaticism in any form are
the Assassin class arose in this manner.) Homeless and hungry, Ajathar had dangerous and to be avoided. Both the
illusionist and the bloodthirsty crowd
Guilds who have accepted lone to steal for a living. Assisted by what are, to Ajathar's mind in hindsight, re-
wolves into their ranks may ask the few illusions he could muster, he be- pulsive. Any apprentice that Bluehand
thief to take on apprentices-but two came a burglar-and a surprisingly might train would have to be True Neu-
things usually prevent this: One, con- proficient one, considering that he was tral as well.
servative guildmembers typically see self-taught. As his burglary skills im-
the lone wolf's unorthodox methods as proved, so did his understanding of the Following are the elements of unique
a threat (because they are not under- magical arts of deception. class, along with the multiplier of each
stood), or as inferior to the traditional (see DMG pgs. 22-23): Fight as thief (-
way of doing things; and two, lone He took as his symbol, his trademark 1); Saving throws as thief (0);ld4 hit
wolves, used to doing things by them- to be left at each "job," an illusionary dice type (+0.5); No armor
selves, are reluctant to share their se- blue hand. The illusion would fade af- permitted-interferes with spellcasting
crets. An example follows: ter a few days-but its discovery came aswell as thief skills (-1);Weapons: any
to invariably bring panic to the heart of (0); +1 hp per level beyond 9th ( + O S ) ;
"Bluehand Ajathar, Lone Wolf anyone who discovered it in his house. 6 initial proficiency slots (+1.5),select
Sometimes Ajathar would not take a as if a normal thief of the cat burglar
This is an example of a "lone wolf" thing, but only leave the hand as a kit; Climb walls (+l); Find/remove
thief, created with the character crea- warning, a taunt, a mockery of a traps (+l);Open locks (+l); Move si-
tion system on pgs. 22-23 of the house's easily-penetrated defenses. lently (+I);Hide in shadows ( +I); Use
DUNGEON MASTER Guide. Illusion/Phantasm mage spells ( +3);
Eventually Ajathar moved on. His Must be of True Neutral alignment (-1);
Ajathar was originally apprenticed native town, where Zalabom was TOTAL MODIFIER: +7.5.
to an illusionist. He never completed killed, was neither affluent nor an ex-
citing place for a daring young entre- Thief Skills; Bluehand has the skills
his formal training, however. His mas- preneur. "Bluehand may therefore be Climb Walls, Find/Remove Traps,
found anywhere that the DM should Open Locks, Move Silently and Hide in
ter, Zalabom the Magnificent, was out- wish to relocate him. Shadows. His base chance of success
spoken on a number of religious and with any of these abilitiesis determined
political issues. One day his words One peculiarity of Ajathar's charac- by Table 19, Thief Average Ability Ta-
went too far against the popular grain, ter is his strict adherence to the align- ble, in the Dungeon Master's Guide
and a mob dragged him from his tower, ment of True Neutrality. The lesson he (pg. 23).
stoned him to death, and set fire to the gained from Zalabom's death is that ex-
building after looting it. Young Ajathar Spell Casting: Without a regular
narrowly escaped with his life and a mentor, Bluehands development of his
illusionist talent was stunted. He ad-
I ' Table 6:AJATHAR'S EXPERIENCE TABLE & SPELLS vances in spell use much more slowly
Illusion/Phantasm Sp than a true mage of comparable level,
* Experience and may only use spells from the
Illusion/Phantasm school of magic. He
9d4+3 3 3 3 2 1 - - must check to see if he can learn a spell,
and must study spells in order to cast
+225,OOO XP per level thereafter them, just like a mage. He does not re-
+h!ppler level thereafter ceive spells automatically when he
Spell progression continues with the same pattern, up to a maximum of three gains a new level; he must find or steal
spells per level, up to 9th level (if the character's intelligence permits it). books or scrolls with new spells, or
must hire an illusionist to share them
i with him.

Adventure Suggestion

A mysterious
lone wolf, freelance thief has struck the
characters' neighborhood, leaving his
trademark blue hand symbol at the


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