Base Requirements

  • Races: Any
  • Sub-Classes: Any Rogue
  • Ability Requirements: Muscle 13, Fitness 12, Aim 11, Max Reason 12
  • Alignments: Non-Good
  • Starting Cash: By class

Weapon Proficiencies

  • Weapon Slots: +2 slots
  • Bonus Weapon Proficiencies: none
  • Required Weapon Proficiencies: Punching or Wrestling specialization
  • Allowed Weapons: Any melee weapon
  • Allowed Armors: Any Armor or Shields

Non-Weapon Proficiencies:

  • Non-weapon Slots: By class, -2 slots
  • Available Categories: By class, plus Martial
  • Bonus Non-weapon Proficiencies: Alertness, City Familiarity, Intimidation
  • Required Proficiencies: none
  • Recommended Proficiencies: Animal Handling, Blacksmithing, Endurance, Gaming, Looting, Mining, Stonemasonry, Trailing, Weaponsmithing
  • Forbidden Proficiencies: none

Overview: The Thug is the most violent sort of thief. Many criminals tend to be fairly intelligent and indirect in their actions, using cleverness, stealth, and subterfuge against their victims. In short, they have style. Thugs—who rely on brute force—lack all these qualities. Thugs are a feature of life in most major cities, operating as independent muscle for any patrons when not holding down regular jobs (blacksmith, mason, or teamster). Large coastal cities have long known the presence of thugs employed by criminal gangs, unprincipled merchant guilds, and seaport authorities. Thugs enforce protection rackets, hijack shipments, serve as bodyguards, provide backup muscle on heists, and intimidate victims and law enforcers alike. A thug is a violent, frightening figure, nearly always male and heavily armed. In some cities, highly paid thugs are unofficially used to keep order in lawless or rebellious neighborhoods, though they are corrupt “peacekeepers” at best.

Description: A thug is usually unkempt and unwashed far beyond the norm for his kind, seedy and suspicious in behavior and physically powerful in appearance. Armor and clothing may show off arm musculature, and bits of stolen jewelry (rings, necklaces, bracelets) may be displayed. At least one and sometimes many weapons are in evidence; if an unusual weapon is used, it is displayed. Other smaller weapons are kept hidden on the thug’s person. Criminal gang insignia, tattoos, scars, bruises, and rude language are characteristic. In particular, armor, weapons, and other possessions are human made or self-manufactured and rarely of good quality.

Role-Playing: A thug is generally an outcast from his people and homeland, possibly wanted there or elsewhere for past crimes. A thug is unimaginative and brutish, unconcerned with larger issues of morality so long as he is well paid and gets to scare people. A thug on an adventure would function as a part-time fighter with mediocre thief skills; still, some groups aren’t choosy about their companions.

It is easy to add more depth to this picture. A thug might have grave anxieties and doubts about his abilities and feel he constantly needs to prove himself. He could have a rough sense of honor and fight worthy opponents fairly, proving himself loyal to a strong leader. He might vent his rage on evil beings or groups that harmed him in the past, buying drinks for friends using the money he loots from his foes (a crude sort of Robin Hood). He could be rather charming for a brutal outlaw, or he could be played with a comic touch as a dull-witted goon with overdone, stereotyped mannerisms.

Special Abilities:

  • Because they are better trained in combat than other rogues, Thugs receive +1 on all “to hit” rolls.
  • When rolling for hit points, a thug rolls 2d4 points per level instead of 1d6, allowing him to withstand melee combat.

Special Disadvantages:

  • Thugs spend much of their early career learning about weapons and their use, and their initial training in the traditional thief skills suffers as a consequence. A Thug receives 2 fewer non-weapon proficiency slots at 1st level. After 1st level, the Thug advances normally.
  • Thugs, regardless of class, may not use any written magic items (neither spell scrolls, nor protection scrolls, nor magical tomes).
  • A thug suffers a -4 reaction penalty when dealing with NPCs of the same race as the thug. These NPCs regard the thug as a traitor or lowlife scum, charges that each bear an element of truth.

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