Base Requirements

  • Races: Any
  • Sub-Classes: Any
  • Ability Requirements: Dex 15, Int 13, Str 11
  • Alignments: Non-Lawful
  • Starting Cash: By class

Weapon Proficiencies

  • Weapon Slots: -1 slot
  • Bonus Weapon Proficiencies: none
  • Required Weapon Proficiencies: Dagger
  • Allowed Weapons: By class
  • Allowed Armors: By class

Non-Weapon Proficiencies:

  • Non-weapon Slots: By class
  • Available Categories: By class
  • Bonus Non-weapon Proficiencies: Appraising, Alertness, Looting, Rope Use
  • Required Proficiencies: none
  • Recommended Proficiencies: Artistic Ability, Begging, Disguise, Information Gathering, Gaming, Gem Cutting, Herbalism, Jumping, Modern Languages, Mountaineering, Observation, Reading Lips, Swimming, Tightrope Walking, Tumbling
  • Forbidden Proficiencies: Reading/Writing

Thief Skills:

  • Pick Pockets: 0%
  • Open Locks: +5%
  • Find/Remove Traps:
  • Move Silently:
  • Hide in Shadows:
  • Hear Noise:
  • Climb Walls: +5%
  • Read Languages: -5%

Overview: A burglar is a highly sophisticated thief with great experience at breaking into “secure” buildings, bypassing locks and traps, passing sentries undetected, stealing the most valuable loot, then escaping as quietly as he got in. The burglar is often a renegade with an elitist attitude, snubbing thieves’ guilds or offering them minimal attention. However, he is sometimes hired by (or forced into serving) powerful patrons such as nobles, so that his skills benefit governments. A may have reasons of his own to recover treasures from evil forces and turn them over to his people— or keep them for himself.

Burglars usually get their start in major cities.They may travel from city to city to avoid capture but love the urban life and all its sophistication and riches.

Description: A burglar has strong tastes for finery and discretion, not wishing to appear gaudy or craving attention but still showing sophistication. Clothing is of fine quality but subdued in tone, simple and elegant, yet very stylish. Weapons and tools are cleverly hidden on the burglar’s person. The burglar can be mistaken for a well-to-do merchant or minor noble on the street. “Working clothes” are usually tight, dark or camouflage-patterned. The burglar takes pains to travel unencumbered and thus move freely and quickly when he needs to.

Role-Playing: In many ways, the Burglar is the stereotypical professional thief. He probably uses more of the traditional thief skills, and more frequently, than any other kit.

Even within the ranks of Burglars, thieves often specialize even further. Some specialize by skills. A “box-man,” for instance, is an expert at opening locks, especially safes and well-protected chests. A “Cat Burglar” or “second-story man” specializes in climbing walls (which can be a remarkably effective protection, especially if ground-level entrances have people around them). Teams of Burglars who specialize by skill often find the most success. Other Burglars specialize by target. Jewel thieves in particular are the elite among Burglars; the protection found around the objects of their attention demands that their skills and cleverness be honed to perfection.

A burglar is a natural for a double life: a quiet, passive, ineffectual-seeming person by day, and the master of stealth by night. He values perfection in a job and picks over details to make sure everything comes out just right. Theft becomes a sort of grand strategic game played out with the cat burglar on one side and the rest of society on the other. If the burglar loses, he is caught and forgotten. But if he wins…who knows what will happen? The burglar plays the game to find out.

Burglars favor small, useful gadgets and tools. Many burglars get the itch to invent new useful items themselves, often one-use devices for special missions. One set of devices that burglars rarely use is weaponry. Fighting shows a lack of planning and finesse; the best burglars never need to fight at all. They strive to take no life without cause on a mission, though they do so if they feel they have no choice. As a result, they seem to be entirely without prejudice toward any race or social class.

Special Abilities:

  • At first level the Burglar gains an additional 10% to either Open Locks or Move Silently. Each time he or she gains a new level, the Burglar receives a +5% bonus that can be applied to either of the above two talents or to Find and Remove Traps.
  • The burglar’s primary weapon is his mind. During each level, a burglar may attempt to invent a minor non-magical and non-lethal device or aid to assist him in his exploits. The invented aid should roughly mimic the effects of a 1st- or 2nd-level wizard or priest spell (it cannot be more powerful than this). The exact details of this device are left up to the player and DM. Possible devices could include suction cups for the hands and knees, allowing the thief to climb perfectly smooth surfaces and even ceilings (spider climb_), a minor drug causing drowsiness when inhaled by one person (sleep_), a chemical that makes copper temporarily look like gold (fools’ gold_), a parachute (feather fall_), a steel clamp that can jam a door shut for a brief time (wizard lock), and a slippery oil that can be put into eggshell “grenades” and thrown to hinder pursuit (grease). Each such item costs 25gp (if it duplicates a 1st-level spell) or 100gp (if it duplicates a 2nd-level spell) to create, is assumed to weigh 1 pound for the purposes of encumbrance, and can be used once. Once the item has been invented, the burglar can fashion the item as often as desired. Only the burglar knows the secret of using and perfecting each device, and he never reveals his secrets.
  • Like the proverbial cat, a burglar can be said to have nine lives. Once per day, a burglar can apply his level as a bonus to a single die roll, be it an attack roll, saving throw, proficiency check, ability check, or whatever. The player must designate the roll to which the bonus is applied before the roll is made. It is wise to save this bonus only for life-threatening situations in which failure means death.

Special Disadvantages:

  • The Burglar devotes so much of his or her time to developing the skills of stealth that he or she is at something of a disadvantage in face-to-face combat, suffering a -1 penalty on all attack rolls in melee. However, attacks made as a backstab are not affected by this penalty.
  • Burglars insist on traveling light to best use their talents. They do not carry more weight than would put them at anything greater than light encumbrance. They avoid carrying heavy, cumbersome loads unless caught in a life-or-death emergency in which they must immediately escape or die.
  • Because they disdain “lowly” forms of getting rich, burglars refuse to learn to pick pockets, considering it beneath them. Their base chance of picking pockets is 0% (regardless of race or class) and they may not spend any of their discretionary points on this ability.
  • A Thief or Bard burglar does not gain the ability to use magical scrolls at 10th level.
  • A burglar is regarded with a degree of respect and awe by law enforcement officials, who admire the burglar’s finesse and reputation. But this also means they try to ensure that if the burglar is captured, he never escapes. They may treat him quite well, but he is chained and watched every moment, and his prison cell is unusually secure. It should be very hard for a captured burglar to ever escape, even with outside aid.

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