ArcticMUD > Newbie Area

How to begin with a thief

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Thieves are masters of the hit and run technique. Main abilities to support your skills are dexterity. Strength will also help you to hit harder, and increase your overall damage output, including your back stabs. Constitution is obviously important as it will directly impact on your overall hit points.

Core skills for the class are hide, sneak, fade, back stab and envenom. Secondary skills are disable and detect, pick, unbalance and throat punch. Case, steal, and plant all need training and steal has great potential in the right situation.

As with all skills in arctic, use them to train them, and learn often. A good set up on your client is the most user friendly way to achieve this. A combination of hotkeys aliases and triggers can be used to great effect here. Be warned however, careless triggers cause deaths, never give yourself lag unnecessarily.

I am assuming any readers are more or less familiar with clients so will not go into to much depth. examples
#hotkey {f4} {envenom spear;sneak}
#act {^%1 is dead! R.I.P.} {get coins corpse;look in corpse;envenom spear;sneak} *this gets you doing 4 commands, none will give you noticeable lag but in a sticky situation it could be the millisecond leading to death instead of life, use at your own risk
#alias {fadeon} {#hotkey {NUM2} {fade n};repeat for all directions}
#alias {fadeoff} {#hotkey {NUM2} {north};repeat for all directions}

The art of stealth limits what thieves can wear, metal can be worn on fingers, but otherwise best not. Neck and wrist may be allowable but I can't confirm this concretely and am too lazy to test it. Strangely enough, silver is a definite exception to this rule. If the lore of an item states its material as silver you can wear it and sneak to your hearts desire. Another factor that will negatively affect your stealth is items wielded, worn or carried that glow or hum, this is less severe than wearing metal, but not good. Keep a chest for your glowing recalls etc.

If new to a thief, don't start it as your first character of the wipe. Gather together a 3d5 1/1 short blade or piercer prime, an offhand of choice, usually short if your prime is piercer and vice versa, an auto hide, sneak, and invisibility item to make things really quick. If you can't get the autos, your skills will progress faster, but your level progression will be slower. Both sneak and hide can be spammed up to poor while sitting in your guild once you are about level 10ish. If your race has infravision you will find stabbing mobs that don't at night time very easy.

Sneak and hide are both easy to train, but take a little bit of boring work. To train sneak solo outside of normal use, find low level aggro mobs sneak, then move in and out of the room fast until they hit you, repeat. To train hide, find a low level zone with aggro mobs that move around, sneak in, hide and wait until they hit you, flee, repeat. An alternative is low level thief class mobs that will case, steal from you etc but won't attack. Have a look around kalaman...

If you were lucky enough to be levelling with the autoinvis, you can also case and then steal 1 coin from mobs that don't see invisible before you stab them to death. Remember to initiate your auto affects simply issue a social command after you flee from a mob. Blink or dance, you can put it on a trigger for fleeing, blink;envenom prime;sneak.

Fade will train to roughly fair just by spamming in and out of your guild. After that you need to use it in combat. Remember if leading, fade moves you alone. It is unreliable until at a good skill level, again train it on low level aggro mobs.

Detect,disable and pick are really what earn thieves their place in a group. Detect can be used as is to see if there are any traps in the room, to reveal hidden chars or mobs or on a particular item such as a chest. If you know there's a nasty trap and you failed the detect, wait until you can detect it again, this skill will increase your chance of disabling. To train disable, work your way through all the towns in krynn, there are traps in all of them, often in sewers, read room descriptions and keep an eye out for chests, cupboards, drawers, desks, safes etc. To train pick, find places with locked doors, that you can lock, pick, lock repeat. Often the keys will eventually stop to work, gaols can be a good starting point.

Dodge will train itself through combat. Unbalance is what you do while grouping, along with coup and throat punch. Throat punch is like warrior punch but with a short silence effect landing on the target occasionally. Unbalance will remove one attack from the target and can also make the target easier to bash. How much easier I do not know. Once you land the coup, you can stab the mob or pc while it is fighting, doesn't matter if it is hitting you or somebody else. Another defensive skill available to thieves is evade. This will allow a thief or scout to be unaffected by area type spells. If you are engaged in combat this he skill will receive a severe penalty, but is still occasionally effective. If you are zoning a lot this skill will train fairly quickly. The easiest way to train it is with stinking cloud. Simply have a non grouped Mage spam this spell a few times and it will progress quickly. Alternatively you can use mobs that cast stinking cloud or cloud kill.

Regards steal, this skill has been put to occasional brilliant use. Sleeping players or mobs can have their equipment skilfully removed without being woken, the same is true of those under the affects of paralysis and I believe power word stun and nightmare. Wands of paralysis have been utilised to strip high level mobs of gear by a thief very early in the wipe, and the shield of Huma has been snatched from its owners grasp by small groups making a stealth strike on at least 2 or 3 occasions.

Remember there is a thief guild in I think, every city in arctic. They won't all teach all skills, if one skill is ready to learn but they won't teach you, roam around to the next city. Sewers are a popular thief hang out, but maybe you have to lift a plank or push on some walls, or enter some cracks or openings...

Work towards getting night vision and explore certain zones to find darkness wands or combine with a cleric or dk and a thief can achieve great things in arctic.

I'm sure I forgot a few things, so experienced players, feel free to chip in. I think it's time for sharing knowledge and experience if the game is going to keep living!

Great guide and well written.

Thanks mate, am planning some tips and tricks guides for other classes also. Will write them up soon and hope people find them helpful

Great write up!  I would suggest that evade and unbalance (especially this skill?) needs some discussion.

Completely forgot evade, thanks for pointing that out Kragg. Added a bit more detail to unbalance also


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