The Thief or Rogue is a character class in many role-playing games, including Dungeons & Dragons, Final Fantasy, World of Warcraft and many MMORPGs. Thieves are usually stealthy and dextrous characters able to disarm traps, pick locks, and perform backstabs from hiding. Thieves are usually capable of melee or ranged combat, and tend to be focused on dodging attacks rather than withstanding damage. They often attack by dual-wielding daggers or other small one-handed weapons, relying on speed and number of strikes rather than sheer damage output. Thieves usually have a stealth ability, allowing them to disappear from sight, often this is combined with attacking an unaware opponent to inflict high damage. Thieves are usually restricted to the lighter armors, leather and the like. While thieves typically cannot practice magic, they might use scrolls or magic items in some games. In most fantasy settings, smaller and more agile fantasy races like elves, gnomes and hobbits are particularly suited for the thief class.
A thief's real talent shines in deceit, espionage or performing acts of subterfuge: lock picking, disarming traps, stealing valuables, and assassinating key targets.
Dungeons & Dragons
Although the thief as an archetype in role-playing games achieved popularity through Dungeons & Dragons, in the game's Third Edition the class was renamed as "Rogue", to broaden the class to any highly skilled character. Today, spies, scouts, and detectives, as well as thieves and just about any other character who relies on stealth and/or a broad range of skills, falls under the Rogue class. Rogues are also capable of doing lots of damage with sneak attacks.
In the Fire Emblem
games, the Thief is the main class able to unlock doors and chests. Their weapon of choice is usually a sword, but in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance
and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn
, they use knives. In addition to opening doors and chests, they may also steal items from enemy units or lower drawbridges
, depending on the game.
Thieves were not able to steal items until Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War, and were only limited to stealing all of the target's Gold on hand by striking them. In Fire Emblem: Thracia 776, Thieves were able to steal any item from the enemy, as long as their Speed was greater and their Build was higher than the Weight of the item stolen. Similarly, in Path of Radiance, Thieves may steal weapons and items in the same manner as Thracia 776, but only items that are unequipped. Thieves were limited to only being able to steal normal items in the GBA Fire Emblem series.
Thieves may promote to Thief Fighters, Assassins or Rogues, depending on the game, or not promote at all. They are generally offensively weaker than most other classes, but their high speed and skill helps them evade attacks with ease.
In the Ragnarok Online MMORPG
, the Thief is one of the basic character classes available to the player. In combat, Thieves rely primarily on their agility - they have relatively few hit points
and their attacks don't deal a lot of damage; however, thanks to their agility, they are able to dodge most enemy attacks and deliver a lot of blows at the same time. While they are able to use some ranged weapons, this is rather rare; a typical Thief will be seen utilising some sort of dagger
in combat, as one of the skills available only to this class greatly increases their efficiency with them. Other abilities of the Thief include stealing items from non-player enemies, becoming invisible for a certain time (although they cannot move while in such a state), throwing rocks and/or sand at enemies, performing a basic poison
attack and curing themselves (or other players) of poison. The weapons a thief may equip are bow, one-handed sword, or dagger. A Thief who has acquired enough experience can become either an Assassin
or a Rogue
Games featuring the thief class or class representing such archetype:
- The Elder Scrolls series; in particular The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion features an extensive Thieves' Guild and Assassins' Guild that each require a number of quests to gain access and membership.
- Final Fantasy series
- Everquest, under the title Rogue
- Everquest II, under the broader category Scout
- Guild Wars , under the title of Assassin
- Nexus: The Kingdom of the Winds
- Quest for Glory
- Silkroad Online
- Swords and Serpents
- Starwars Galaxies , under the title of spy
- Thief, a series of games focused almost entirely on a thief named Garrett.
- World of Warcraft, which contains the Rogue. Rogues in WoW are elves, gnomes, humans, and notably Orcs (although Orcs have a large muscular frame not built for sneaking or speedy, agile fighting.)
- Diablo, which has a Rogue class, and Diablo II: Lord of Destruction which has an Assassin class.
- Kingdom of Loathing, especially the Disco Bandit class.
- Several entries of the Dragon Quest series.
- The Wizardry series uses the thief class, although the last game (Wizardry 8) calls them rogue.
- RuneScape uses the character class 'Thief'. There is a small Rogue's Den and Rogue's Den Maze, clearly inspired by the Thieves' Guild featured in the film Dungeons & Dragons Thieving level fifty is required to enter. Thieves are a members class, using the thieving skill, and usually dress in black clothing and masks, as do NPC Thieves. Thieves can usually be seen pickpocketing people and lock picking chests and doors, or stealing from market stalls.
- Adventure Quest and Dragonfable both feature Rogue as a starting class.
- Last chaos has Rogue as a selectable class.
- Ragnarok Online has a Rogue class, but you must first be a theif. Once transed, they're called Stalkers.
Thief, AKA Prince Elf, Clan Khee'bler appears in 8-Bit Theater
as a greedy genius that fulfills the general stereotype of a thief character class.