Monday, October 19, 2009


Here is the "official" Beyond the Black Gate Swords & Wizardry Thief, for your downloading pleasure: Link

I know a few S&W and OD&D fans who are against the Thief (as a dedicated class at least), but I don't mind if a player really wants to run one. I'm a big fan of pulpy, thiefly archetypes like Vance's Cugel and the multitude of cowardly and conniving thieves in REH's Conan stories.

Up to recently, I've just been handing out a copy of the Thief page from Labyrinth Lord (I use the Elf from that book as well), but wanted something a little more Swords & Wizardry flavored, if that makes sense at all! For my version, I tried to keep it simple, like the existing classes, and to let it operate within the existing rules for finding traps, etc, as much as possible.

Any feedback is appreciated!


  1. The artwork is fair, but it always strikes me curious when it's clearly a western European figure in European garb carrying a weapon that is distinctly middle Asian in origin. What's wrong with a French dagger? Not vicious looking enough?

  2. That's a picture of Vance's Cugel I found online.

  3. Thanks for making this available! I'm planning on running AD&D for my next campaign, but, every time someone posts new material for S&W, it makes me wonder if it isn't time to go really Old School.

  4. @Alexis - He stole it ;)

    @Ravyn - Your thief looks great! I like the single stat for thief abilities. Many times "point buys" seem to result in thieves who are only good at one thing or aren't good at anything until higher levels. At first glance this seems to circumvent that effect. A worthy addition to the myriad thief styles available for S&W.

  5. I agree with Grim. The single thievery stat is nice and neat. While everyone else has a 1 in 6 (~16%) chance to do this stuff, he starts at 2 in 6 and improves from there without getting fussy about the details or exact skill.

  6. @ Alexis

    Actually that is a straight shortsword. He is pulling it out so fast it looks curved.

    It is also making that *shlink* sound.

    I think because of all this we can forgive "Jake!". I know I have.

  7. Great Thief class - I like how you've kept it within the rules, not adding loads of sub-systems. Simple but elegant design.

  8. Yes, I like the simple design, I may end up stealing this for my campaign

  9. I like it!
    One of the problems with the thief from Holmes, etc., is that he/she has such low chances of doing anything successfully at level 1.

  10. always strikes me curious when it's clearly a western European figure in European garb carrying a weapon that is distinctly middle Asian in origin...
    I bet he stole it!

  11. Well done. I will likely do it just a bit differently, but your version will cast a long shadow over mine. Thanks for sharing this.



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