Thieves' Tools

Hi guys, 

Can someone help me understand how a non-rogue character can open locks / disable traps? As I understand it, to do such tasks you need to use thieves's tools for which you need to be proficient. As I also understand it, only rogues can be proficient with thieves' tools. 

If I am correct, it needs to be changed for something as a feat that other characters can take and give it free to rogues or else every party will need to have a rogue with them. Plus, someone that wants to be a wizard that, in his past life, was a locksmith cannot try to unlock doors?

Makes no sense to me, so I thought I'd come here and see what you guys think! 
Your understanding is completely correct. You must play a thief to use the tools. There's even a background which gives you thieve's tools that you can't use.  Yes, it's senseless. Several people have decided to houserule that restriction away.
I think they were just testing this and it seems most people are against it. It will probably change for the next packet.
My two copper.
Currently non-rogues have to use the oldest trick in the book: drag the chest to a really high spot and push it off, preferably onto some enemies.  Or bash it with the nearest dwarf's forehead until it opens, preferably with said dwarf's permission.  Which is called the Clangeddin lockpick.  Or cast the obnoxious knock spell.  

Seriously though it's arbitrarily limiting in the background system to only allow rogues to lockpick.  But as Jenks said, they will probably change it. 
Aight, I did houserule it for now saying that you need to be trained into Disable Device to try and pick locks / traps.

At least someone took it.

Thx guys!
I'm not against needing the tools to do the job, that's just neat flavor. But giving rogue the only access to thieves tools? That's a little rediculous.
My two copper.
I'm not against needing the tools to do the job, that's just neat flavor. But giving rogue the only access to thieves tools? That's a little rediculous.

And then creating a background which SAYS you are good at doing the job, but does NOT give you the tools required to actually do it?

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
Hi guys, 

Can someone help me understand how a non-rogue character can open locks / disable traps? As I understand it, to do such tasks you need to use thieves's tools for which you need to be proficient. As I also understand it, only rogues can be proficient with thieves' tools. 

If I am correct, it needs to be changed for something as a feat that other characters can take and give it free to rogues or else every party will need to have a rogue with them. Plus, someone that wants to be a wizard that, in his past life, was a locksmith cannot try to unlock doors?

Makes no sense to me, so I thought I'd come here and see what you guys think! 


They can not open locks or disable traps. Only the rogue can do that, so yes Multiclassing one level of rogue for every class is the new thing. This way you get nearly autosuceed on every skill and can pick locks!

Also check the wizard spell knock which is a way around theives tools. But unless you are a wizard or rogue no getting into a locked door for you. Maybe the fighter is just suppose to bash the door down? 
Your understanding is completely correct. You must play a thief to use the tools. There's even a background which gives you thieve's tools that you can't use.  Yes, it's senseless. Several people have decided to houserule that restriction away.


You can't actually use theives tools with the background as the background doesn't grant you proficency with theives tools. Sure you get them in the starting package but you have no idea how to actually use them.

This could be an error however. 
I'm not against needing the tools to do the job, that's just neat flavor. But giving rogue the only access to thieves tools? That's a little rediculous.

And then creating a background which SAYS you are good at doing the job, but does NOT give you the tools required to actually do it?




*shrugg* It's a playtest. 
My two copper.
That only specific classes could open locks and find/disarm traps was something i actually liked from AD&D.

I am in favor of Thieve's Tools Proficiency. It gives the Rogue a truly unique ability.
I let anyone try it, I give disadvantage to anyone not specifically trained however.

∴ "Virtus junxit, mors non separabit." 

The problem with allowing anyone to use theives' tools will be the Dex Fighter Build with a Guild Thief background.  This gives the fighter the ability to use heavy weapons and longbow, and it gives him the ability to do most of the thieving skills as well as a rogue.   Make this PC an elf and he can get the extra damage using longbow, which becomes pretty cool.  

If they allow non-rogues to use thieves' tools, they will need to give the rogue class something unique to make the rogue choice more attractive.

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 

The problem with allowing anyone to use theives' tools will be the Dex Fighter Build with a Guild Thief background.  This gives the fighter the ability to use heavy weapons and longbow, and it gives him the ability to do most of the thieving skills as well as a rogue.   Make this PC an elf and he can get the extra damage using longbow, which becomes pretty cool.  If the fighter takes the   

If they allow non-rogues to use thieves' tools, they will need to give the rogue class something unique to make the rogue choice more attractive.  

I don't see how that is a problem.  Your Fighter above has specifically taken a background in order to make his character into a sort of Fighter/Thief.

Currently, the Rogue gains 4 extra skills and an extra background trait.


Currently, the Rogue gains 4 extra skills and an extra background trait.




Is that enough to make the rogue the class that people would want to play over the fighter/rogue? 

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 


Currently, the Rogue gains 4 extra skills and an extra background trait.




Is that enough to make the rogue the class that people would want to play over the fighter/rogue? 



maybe not, but neither is the exclusive access to thieves' tools

 
That only specific classes could open locks and find/disarm traps was something i actually liked from AD&D.

I am in favor of Thieve's Tools Proficiency. It gives the Rogue a truly unique ability.



I disliked it.  While this is a 3e example, it still applies to a large degree.  I played a ranger/wizard hybrid.  One of his shticks was the ability to move in and out of places as well (often better than) a rogue or a ranger.  In addition, his ability to locate stuff (he was something of an acquirer) was pretty high and more often than not comparable to a rogue's skill. 

Now having said that, this character, despite having multiple levels in wizard (actually a majority) could handle a magical trap, by the rules, as well as a rogue without resorting to spells.  That stretched my imagination.  Yes, I understood the underlining rules that governed this fact, and I understood the need for balance (despite having inadvertantly creating an unbalanced character without any intention of doing so) between classes.  But really?

I'll admit that 3e had broken mechanics, and I shouldn't be able to make a significantly better rogue without being (at least in part) a rogue like I managed to do in 3e.  However, I do believe that a player should be able to play a competent variation that makes sense within the rules of games. 

Those particular rules just limit player imagination...    
     

Currently, the Rogue gains 4 extra skills and an extra background trait.




Is that enough to make the rogue the class that people would want to play over the fighter/rogue? 



maybe not, but neither is the exclusive access to thieves' tools

 

This.  I'm not saying the Rogue as it currently stands is perfect, but "Gets to be the only one who can use Lockpicks, somehow" isn't something that will draw people to a class. 

And regardless, it doesn't make sense: what about a rogue who isn't even trained at disable device?  And, as people have said, what about other characters with a Thief background?  How can they be trained in disable device but they somehow don't know how to use a lockpick?  We aren't talking rocket science here.

as someone who has about seven years of real-life experience in lockpicking, i can say that it's really not that hard to pick up. you certaintly wouldn't need a level of Rogue to be able to figure out the tools.
as someone who has about seven years of real-life experience in lockpicking, i can say that it's really not that hard to pick up. you certaintly wouldn't need a level of Rogue to be able to figure out the tools.

Shows what you know!  You are actually a 10th level rogue!

as someone who has about seven years of real-life experience in lockpicking, i can say that it's really not that hard to pick up. you certaintly wouldn't need a level of Rogue to be able to figure out the tools.

Shows what you know!  You are actually a 10th level rogue!




The signature clearly shows that individual to be a Warlock.  Duh... 
Humm...many people here can probably make 2 sword swings in 6 seconds yet only the Fighters has Multiattack as a class feature. What i mean by that is that many real life experiences could demonstrate that some class features should not be exclusive while in fact they stand for exclusive design reasons to try to give classes unique abilities.

Thieve's Tools procifiency was created as a mean to make certain Skills exclusive to the Rogue as it used to be, as discussed by Mike Meals at Origins 2012.
The biggest problem with locking (pun not intended) a skill to the rogue is that the players will NEED it. Some will even feel that they do the sacrifice of being the rogue for the only goal to be able to disable traps and pick locks for the group. This is a really broken mechanic.

What the proficieny could give is a bonus to the already possessed Disable Device skill. Like in the 4th, the thieves' tools could give a bonus to the rogue when he do such tasks as picking locks or disabling traps.

Plus, I repeat, if someone is trained in disable device, let's say a cleric, how else can he use this skill if he cannot use the tools for it?

This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

As good as house rules are, such a big issue (imo), shouldnt be house ruled, but integrated in the core elements of the game. 
i think we all understand the intent of making thieves' tools exclusive. the real problem lies in the lack of reasoning for that exclusivity. i recognize that the rogue is in need of some unique mechanics and i fully agree that we're playing a fantasy game that doesn't always mirror real life, but arbitrary and limiting rules like this proficency do a lot of harm to customization and the ability to realize a character concept.

i'd even go so far as to say that not only should rogues lose their corner on thieves' tools, but also the assumption that all rogues can pick locks. mearls has said that he wasn't comfortable with sneak attack being a default due to story implications, so why is the idea that all rogues can use thieves' tools any different?
Humm...many people here can probably make 2 sword swings in 6 seconds yet only the Fighters has Multiattack as a class feature. What i mean by that is that many real life experiences could demonstrate that some class features should not be exclusive while in fact they stand for exclusive design reasons to try to give classes unique abilities.

Thieve's Tools procifiency was created as a mean to make certain Skills exclusive to the Rogue as it used to be, as discussed by Mike Meals at Origins 2012.



The problem with this entirely lies in the effectiveness of the class in all facets of the game (what is called the three pillars by WotC).  The rogue in its current iteration is a poor combatant (possiblly the most important pillar for a majority of the playerbase).  It can effective; however, as a general rule, it will produce 60% of the offensive capability of the fighter at level 10 in its current iteration.  On top of that, its defensive capabilities aren't up to par. 

This, in effect, means someone has to "eat" a turd and be the party's rogue.  Somone has to accept being the substandard combatant for the good of the party, or the party just does without.  Even if the classes were all equal (which WotC could make happen with better math - HIRE A MATH PERSON!), if it doesn't fit a players' concept, someone still has to eat a "turd."  This is a similar situation that affected the cleric prior to 4th edition.  People just didn't want to be a walking bandaid or fulfill that role; even with alot of perks provided by the game system.  Purposely creating a system that encourages "turd" eating in, in my opinion, a poor way of doing things. 

If Thieve's Tools, were open to everyone with a cost of feat or something like that, you still have some "turd" floating around; however, it's a smaller one.  More people are likely to swallow it for the good of the party.  

Even if WotC doesn't take that into account, the commitment to having a bunch of classes as options is going to mean that more parties are going to have to do without a rogue (players should play what they want after all) unless you go ahead and dilute Thieve's Tools to other classes.  So, saying "I'm going to give you all of these classes as an option, but one of you still should play a rogue" is just going to exasperate the issue.     

Plus, DnD is about "being anyone and doing anything" as one WotC person put it.  Now you're creating rules to restrict that concept?  On the other hand, the possibility of creating a fighter (in 3e) that could fight the same way (and fit the combat role; just combat pillar role) of a ranger is acceptable?  Lines do have to drawn...  It's just a matter of figuring out whether the perks of a class outweighs the desires of a part of the playerbase.       

Keep in mind too that, adding a feat that give access will still keep the integrity between various editions that WotC is trying to keep.  I can see that stuff in the various class features that don't necessarily make the greatest sense to a non-1e or non-2e fan.  Specialties are optional; so, in a traditional game, the rogue would still have that as an advantage. 
Reading through this thread is getting me to think back to the other threads that suggest getting rid of rogue as a class.  Is rogue just defined by the skills contained in a background or specialty?  If so, any class can be a rogue. 

What really makes them different than a dexterity based fighter, or even a sneaky wizard?   

Here's an idea:  maybe there should be two fighter classes (instead of the fighter and the rogue), the "Powerful Warrior" and the "Agile Warrior".  The "Powerful Warrior" should get access to Fighter/Rogue Type Schemes that include strength weapons, heavier armor, and abilities that rely on power and endurance (slayer, protector, thug/enforcer, veteran).   The "Agile Warrior" should get access to finesse weapons, light armor, and Rogue/Fighter type Schemes that grant the abilites of the acrobat, the thief, the duelist, the sharpshooter, the trickster).  In addition to this, let the thieving skills be a background as well, so that other classes can take that as a background if they want to be able to do the sneaking, disabling, lockpicking etc.  This will give everyone a way to build the rogue that he or she really wants.     

I'm all for letting people play exactly what they want, so I wouldn't be opposed to spreading the Rogue abiliites out into schemes and background that anyone can take.   It just changes the traditional approach to the game.   It might also mean that in a party, there may be more than 1 PC who is considered a rogue.





     

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 

The rogue is currently the "guy with the skills". 

It is not combat oriented and is therefore a master of skills.

This, though, should not affect OTHER character to be able to pick locks. It is not much a matter of a "uniqueness" for the rogue. It is more a matter of being able to build a nice background for your Trickster Cleric that used to be a Thief and therefore he knows how to pick locks!

The game simply does not permit that at the moment, which I strongly think should be changed in any ways.

EDIT :Think of the rogue as the Jack of All Trades and the other characters as masters of 1 or 2 skills. Yes the rogue has much more under his sleaves, but any class should be able to master any skill if they put the "time" (and specialities) into it. 
Reading through this thread is getting me to think back to the other threads that suggest getting rid of rogue as a class.  Is rogue just defined by the skills contained in a background or specialty?  If so, any class can be a rogue. 

What really makes them different than a dexterity based fighter, or even a sneaky wizard?   

Here's an idea:  maybe there should be two fighter classes (instead of the fighter and the rogue), the "Powerful Warrior" and the "Agile Warrior".  The "Powerful Warrior" should get access to Fighter/Rogue Type Schemes that include strength weapons, heavier armor, and abilities that rely on power and endurance (slayer, protector, thug/enforcer, veteran).   The "Agile Warrior" should get access to finesse weapons, light armor, and Rogue/Fighter type Schemes that grant the abilites of the acrobat, the thief, the duelist, the sharpshooter, the trickster).  In addition to this, let the thieving skills be a background as well, so that other classes can take that as a background if they want to be able to do the sneaking, disabling, lockpicking etc.  This will give everyone a way to build the rogue that he or she really wants.     

I'm all for letting people play exactly what they want, so I wouldn't be opposed to spreading the Rogue abiliites out into schemes and background that anyone can take.   It just changes the traditional approach to the game.   It might also mean that in a party, there may be more than 1 PC who is considered a rogue.





     



Except that this approach would drive away any 1e and 2e players.  It also has a strong possibility of chasing away 3e players.  In other words, it would do absolutely nothing to unify the playerbase. 

Alot of players don't care if there is an overlap between classes.  Some players even enjoy "replacing" one class with a character concept of his or her own; much like what did with a ranger/wizard hybrid in 3e. 

So, I don't think that's a good idea... 
The rogue is currently the "guy with the skills". 

It is not combat oriented and is therefore a master of skills.

This, though, should not affect OTHER character to be able to pick locks. It is not much a matter of a "uniqueness" for the rogue. It is more a matter of being able to build a nice background for your Trickster Cleric that used to be a Thief and therefore he knows how to pick locks!

The game simply does not permit that at the moment, which I strongly think should be changed in any ways.

EDIT :Think of the rogue as the Jack of All Trades and the other characters as masters of 1 or 2 skills. Yes the rogue has much more under his sleaves, but any class should be able to master any skill if they put the "time" (and specialities) into it. 



This could work; I have my misgivings about gimping a class.  However, the real issue with the rogue is that its the only class that can handle a trap or consistently handle a lock (well, for gold the wizard can).  Due to this, the party either has someone bite the bullet to play a rogue, or the rogue just doesn't get played in that party.  A lack of a rogue will severely hamper a DM; he really can't throw too many traps or locks out there.  Or, he provides an out, or he houserules it. 

Either way, I agree that Thieve's Tools need to be accessible to other classes at the very least, preferability to anyone willing to pay the price.

I disagree with your view of the rogue; however, that's a discussion for a different thread with that as a topic...
This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

This. I've already house-ruled it. There's no point to Disable Device without Thieves' Tools, and I do not want, no way no how, to force my players into making a rogue just so someone can be trap monkey. If someone wants to make a dex-based fighter with Disable Device, or a wizard, or a cleric, or really anything, I say go for it.
 
The player who chooses to be rogue should do so for reasons beyond just disabling traps and opening locks. Which right now are slim on the ground, unless you REALLY love being skillful - but that's for another thread.
 
This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

This. I've already house-ruled it. There's no point to Disable Device without Thieves' Tools, and I do not want, no way no how, to force my players into making a rogue just so someone can be trap monkey. If someone wants to make a dex-based fighter with Disable Device, or a wizard, or a cleric, or really anything, I say go for it.
 
The player who chooses to be rogue should do so for reasons beyond just disabling traps and opening locks. Which right now are slim on the ground, unless you REALLY love being skillful - but that's for another thread.
 



And it shouldn't be hard to add as a module...
This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

This. I've already house-ruled it. There's no point to Disable Device without Thieves' Tools, and I do not want, no way no how, to force my players into making a rogue just so someone can be trap monkey. If someone wants to make a dex-based fighter with Disable Device, or a wizard, or a cleric, or really anything, I say go for it.
 
The player who chooses to be rogue should do so for reasons beyond just disabling traps and opening locks. Which right now are slim on the ground, unless you REALLY love being skillful - but that's for another thread.
 



I agree completely.  One of the great things about 4e was that there was no 'you must have a rogue' or 'you must have a cleric' nonsense.  We absolutely do not need the return of 'who gets stuck playing this class for a niche ability' nonsense.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

This. I've already house-ruled it. There's no point to Disable Device without Thieves' Tools, and I do not want, no way no how, to force my players into making a rogue just so someone can be trap monkey. If someone wants to make a dex-based fighter with Disable Device, or a wizard, or a cleric, or really anything, I say go for it.
 
The player who chooses to be rogue should do so for reasons beyond just disabling traps and opening locks. Which right now are slim on the ground, unless you REALLY love being skillful - but that's for another thread.
 



I agree completely.  One of the great things about 4e was that there was no 'you must have a rogue' or 'you must have a cleric' nonsense.  We absolutely do not need the return of 'who gets stuck playing this class for a niche ability' nonsense.



That proves it!  The world will end in December; Salla and I agreed on something.  End of the World!  Some one invent an affordable starship!
Guys, I think you're all misreading the rule (which indicates that the rule is poorly written). In one of his tweets, referenced in the other thread, Mearls notes that lack of proficiency with a weapon simply means a character is at a disadvantage with that weapon. I presume the same keyword ("proficient") would have the same consequences with regards to thieves tools, i.e., a cleric or wizard can use them, but not proficiently, incurring a disadvantage.
Guys, I think you're all misreading the rule (which indicates that the rule is poorly written). In one of his tweets, referenced in the other thread, Mearls notes that lack of proficiency with a weapon simply means a character is at a disadvantage with that weapon. I presume the same keyword ("proficient") would have the same consequences with regards to thieves tools, i.e., a cleric or wizard can use them, but not proficiently, incurring a disadvantage.




last i checked, mike mearls's twitter feed was not part of the playtest packet. so while i can agree with your post more or less, i have to disagree that we're "misreading" it.

right now, the rules say that the rogue is the only one proficient with thieves' tools.

also, even if we agree that non-proficency results in disadvantage, it still doesn't make any sense that someone with specialized training in picking locks and disabling traps wouldn't know how to use the tools that are required to perform those tasks.
Guys, I think you're all misreading the rule (which indicates that the rule is poorly written). In one of his tweets, referenced in the other thread, Mearls notes that lack of proficiency with a weapon simply means a character is at a disadvantage with that weapon. I presume the same keyword ("proficient") would have the same consequences with regards to thieves tools, i.e., a cleric or wizard can use them, but not proficiently, incurring a disadvantage.




last i checked, mike mearls's twitter feed was not part of the playtest packet. so while i can agree with your post more or less, i have to disagree that we're "misreading" it.

right now, the rules say that the rogue is the only one proficient with thieves' tools.

also, even if we agree that non-proficency results in disadvantage, it still doesn't make any sense that someone with specialized training in picking locks and disabling traps wouldn't know how to use the tools that are required to perform those tasks.



Disadvantage is 2d20 take the lowest.  I'm pretty sure that equals to an average roll of 6.175.  That's a 20% reduction on average.  So, I would move the word consistently in my previous post.  If you aren't a rogue, you can't consistently disable traps or open locks instead of you can't disable traps or consistently open locks.  That still forces a rogue into a party (if the party can estimate the general impact of disadvantage). 

It still makes it an issue in my opinion... 
This issue must be worked out in the core elements or else a LOT of games will just house rule it.

This. I've already house-ruled it. There's no point to Disable Device without Thieves' Tools, and I do not want, no way no how, to force my players into making a rogue just so someone can be trap monkey. If someone wants to make a dex-based fighter with Disable Device, or a wizard, or a cleric, or really anything, I say go for it.
 
The player who chooses to be rogue should do so for reasons beyond just disabling traps and opening locks. Which right now are slim on the ground, unless you REALLY love being skillful - but that's for another thread.
 



I agree completely.  One of the great things about 4e was that there was no 'you must have a rogue' or 'you must have a cleric' nonsense.  We absolutely do not need the return of 'who gets stuck playing this class for a niche ability' nonsense.



That proves it!  The world will end in December; Salla and I agreed on something.  End of the World!  Some one invent an affordable starship!


How do you do this here...
+1...?
I have an answer for you, it may even be the truth.
Guys, I think you're all misreading the rule (which indicates that the rule is poorly written).



According to Plaguescarred:

A252: Guild Thief currently doesn't grant proficiency with Thieve's Tools. 

And there's this from Equipment:

Thieves’ Tools: Characters proficient with thieves’ tools can use them to find and disarm traps and to open locks. Normally, these tasks are impossible without appropriate tools.


Wizards told us, in essence, "Guild Thief / Disable Device is an exception. This one skill is only useful to rogues." I've house-ruled otherwise, for reasons given above.
 


I hope Wizards come to their collective senses about this.

also, even if we agree that non-proficency results in disadvantage, it still doesn't make any sense that someone with specialized training in picking locks and disabling traps wouldn't know how to use the tools that are required to perform those tasks.



Preach it, brother. Cool
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