Signaling for her companions to wait, a halfling creeps forward through the dungeon hall. She presses an ear to the door, then pulls out a set of tools and picks the lock in the blink of an eye. Then she disappears into the shadows as her warrior friend moves forward to kick the door open.
A human lurks in the shadows of an alley while his accomplice prepares for her part in the ambush. When their target—a notorious slaver—passes the alleyway, the accomplice cries out, the slaver comes to investigate, and the assassin’s blade cuts his throat before he can make a sound.
Suppressing a giggle, a gnome waggles her fingers and magically lifts the key ring from the guard’s belt. In a moment, the keys are in her hand, the cell door is open, and she and her companions are free to make their escape.
Rogues rely on skill, stealth, and their foes’ vulnerabilities to get the upper hand in any situation. They have a knack for finding the solution to just about any problem, demonstrating a resourcefulness and versatility that is the cornerstone of any successful adventuring party.
Skill and Precision
Rogues devote as much effort to mastering the use of a variety of skills as they do to perfecting their combat abilities, giving them a broad expertise that few other characters can match. Many rogues focus on stealth and deception, while others refine the skills that help them in a dungeon environment, such as climbing, finding and disarming traps, and opening locks.
When it comes to combat, rogues prioritize cunning over brute strength. A rogue would rather make one precise strike, placing it exactly where the attack will hurt the target most, than wear an opponent down with a barrage of attacks. Rogues have an almost supernatural knack for avoiding danger, and a few learn magical tricks to supplement their other abilities.
A Shady Living
Every town and city has its share of rogues. Most of them live up to the worst stereotypes of the class, making a living as burglars, assassins, cutpurses, and con artists. Often, these scoundrels are organized into thieves’ guilds or crime families. Plenty of rogues operate independently, but even they sometimes recruit apprentices to help them in their scams and heists. A few rogues make an honest living as locksmiths, investigators, or exterminators, which can be a dangerous job in a world where dire rats—and wererats—haunt the sewers.
As adventurers, rogues fall on both sides of the law. Some are hardened criminals who decide to seek their fortune in treasure hoards, while others take up a life of adventure to escape from the law. Some have learned and perfected their skills with the explicit purpose of infiltrating ancient ruins and hidden crypts in search of treasure.
Creating a Rogue
As you create your rogue character, consider the character’s relationship to the law. Do you have a criminal past—or present? Are you on the run from the law or from an angry thieves’ guild master? Or did you leave your guild in search of bigger risks and bigger rewards? Is it greed that drives you in your adventures, or some other desire or ideal?
What was the trigger that led you away from your previous life? Did a great con or heist gone terribly wrong cause you to reevaluate your career? Maybe you were lucky and a successful robbery gave you the coin you needed to escape the squalor of your life. Did wanderlust finally call you away from your home? Perhaps you suddenly found yourself cut off from your family or your mentor, and you had to find a new means of support. Or maybe you made a new friend—another member of your adventuring party—who showed you new possibilities for earning a living and employing your particular talents.
Choose an archetype, which grants you features.
Masters of stealth and infiltration, Infiltrators prefer to attack when their opponent is least aware. Infiltrators rely on their resourcefulness, versatility, and martial prowess to tackle problems and their foes.
Your Dexterity increases by 1, and one other ability increases by 1.
You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:
(a) a rapier or (b) a shortsword
(a) a shortbow and quiver of 20 arrows or (b) a shortsword
(a) a burglar’s pack, (b) a dungeoneer’s pack, or (c) an explorer’s pack
Lock picks, and trap disarming tools
A formula book and alchemist’s supplies if you know how to make concoctions
Rogues have many features in common, including their emphasis on perfecting their skills, their precise and deadly approach to combat, and their increasingly quick reflexes. But different rogues steer those talents in varying directions, embodied by the rogue subclasses. Your choice of subclass is a reflection of your focus—not necessarily an indication of your chosen profession, but a description of your preferred techniques.
Choose a Roguish Subclass
Choose a roguish subclass, which grants you features.
You focus your training on the grim art of death. Those who adhere to this subclass are diverse: hired killers, spies, bounty hunters, and even specially anointed priests trained to exterminate the enemies of their deity. Stealth, poison, and disguise help you eliminate your foes with deadly efficiency.
|Level||Proficiency Bonus||Features||Ploys||Stamina Dice||Dice Limit|
|1st||+2||Deceptive Ploys, Fighting Styles, Second Wind||1||2||1|
|2nd||+2||Cunning Action, Danger Sense, Feat (1), Sneak Attack (1d6)||2||5||1|
|3rd||+2||Abilities Increase (1), Skilled (1)||3||7||1|
|5th||+3||Embedded Strike, Extra Attack, Resilient, Sneak Attack (2d6)||5||11||2|
|6th||+3||Feat (3), Skilled (2)||6||14||2|
|7th||+3||Abilities Increase (2), Evasion||7||16||2|
|9th||+4||Resilient, Skilled (3), Sneak Attack (3d6), Use Magic Device||9||20||3|
|11th||+4||Abilities Increase (3)||11||25||3|
|12th||+4||Feat (6), Skilled (4)||12||27||3|
|13th||+5||Blindsense, Reliable Talent, Slippery Mind, Sneak Attack (4d6)||13||29||4|
|15th||+5||Abilities Increase (4), Skilled (5)||15||34||4|
|17th||+6||Elusive, Reliable, Sneak Attack (5d6)||17||38||5|
|18th||+6||Feat (9), Skilled (6)||18||41||5|
|19th||+6||Abilities Increase (5)||19||43||5|
|20th||+6||Feat (10), Stroke of Luck||20||45||5|
You practice ploys to get the upper hand on your foes.
You gain one ploy as shown on the Ploys column of the Infiltrator table. A ploy grants one of the following options:
- Learn a new theme and a fighting style from it.
- Learn a new maneuver from a theme you know. The maneuver must cost equal to, or less than, your dice limit. If the maneuvers costs 2 or more stamina dice, you must know a number of maneuvers from the maneuver’s theme equal to the maneuver’s stamina dice cost minus 1.
- Learn a new fighting style from a theme you know.
When you gain a level in this class, you gain one additional ploy and you can choose a maneuver you know and replace it with another maneuver from a theme you know, following the restrictions above.
You know three maneuvers of your choice from the themes you know.
The Infiltrator table shows how many stamina dice you have to use maneuvers. Your stamina die are d8s. To use a maneuver, you must expend a number of stamina dice based on the maneuver’s dice cost.
You regain all expended stamina dice when you finish a long rest and regain half your total stamina dice (rounded up) when you finish a short rest.
There is a limit on the amount of stamina dice you can spend to use a maneuver. The limit is based on your rogue level, as shown on the Dice Limit column of the Infiltrator table.
You use your Strength or Dexterity when setting the saving throw DC for a maneuver you use.
Maneuver save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Strength or Dexterity
You have trained and adopted styles of fighting as your specialties. For each theme you know that has fighting styles, you learn one of the fighting styles from that theme. You can learn additional fighting styles from themes you know with a Ploy.
As a bonus action on your turn, you use one of the fighting styles you know. You can only have one style active at a time and it remains active until you finish a short or long rest or until you use another style.
You have a limited well of energy that you can draw on to protect yourself from harm. As an action, you can spend up to half your Health Dice (minimum one). For each Health Die spent in this way, roll the die and add your Constitution. You can decide to spend an additional Health Die after each roll. You regain health equal to the total.
Once you use this feature, you must finish a short or long rest before you can use it again.
Your quick thinking and agility allow you to move and act quickly. You can take an additional action on each of your turns in combat. This action can only be used to make a Skulduggery or Stealth check or take the Disengage, Hide, or Use an Object action.
Alternatively, as a bonus action, you can take the Dash action.
You gain an uncanny sense of when things nearby aren’t as they should be, giving you an edge when you dodge away from danger. You have advantage on Reflex saving throws against effects that you can see, such as traps and spells. To gain this benefit, you can’t be blinded, deafened, or incapacitated.
A feat represents an area of expertise that gives a character special capabilities. It embodies training, experience, and abilities beyond what a class provides.
You gain a feat of your choice from the general feats or from a theme you know.
You gain additional feats at 4th, 6th, 8th, 10th, 12th, 14th, 16th, 18th, and 20th level.
When you gain a level, you can choose one of the feats you know and replace it with another feat that you could have learned when the replaced feat was chosen.
You know how to strike subtly and exploit a foe’s distraction. Once on your turn, you can deal an extra 1d6 damage to one creature you hit with a weapon attack if you have advantage on the attack roll or if the target is within 1.5 meters of an enemy isn’t incapacitated and you don’t have disadvantage on the attack roll. The attack must use a finesse or a ranged weapon.
The amount of the extra damage increases as you gain levels in this class, as shown in the Sneak Attack column of the Rogue table.
Increase two abilities of your choice by 1. As normal, you can’t increase an ability above 5 using this feature.
Your abilities increase again at 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th level.
Choose a skill you know or from from your skill list to improve your proficiency with.
- If you are untrained, you become capable
- If you are already capable, you become proficient
- If you are already proficient, you gain expertise with that skill.
At 6th level, 12th level, and 18th level you can choose a skill that is not from your skill list.
When you take the Attack action, you can forgo one weapon attack that uses your ability to throw a concoction or use a maneuver that has a use time of 1 action.
You can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn. You can draw a weapon that has the thrown property as part of the attack you make with the weapon.
Choose Fortitude, Reflex, or Will saving throws to become capable with, or proficient if you are already capable.
Choose another saving throw at 9th level.
You can nimbly dodge out of the way of certain area effects, such as a red dragon’s fiery breath or an ice storm spell. When you are subjected to an effect that allows you to make a Reflex saving throw to take only half damage, you instead take no damage if you succeed on the saving throw, and only half damage if you fail.
Use Magic Device
You have learned enough about the workings of magic that you can improvise the use of items even when they are not intended for you. You ignore all species, class, and level requirements on the use of magic items.
If you are able to hear, you are aware of the location of any hidden or invisible creature within 3 meters of you.
You have refined your chosen skills until they approach perfection. Whenever you make an ability check that lets you add your proficiency bonus, you can treat a 1d20 roll result of 9 or lower as a 10.
You have acquired greater mental strength. You gain proficiency in Will saving throws.
You are so evasive that attackers rarely gain the upper hand against you. No attack roll has advantage against you while you aren’t incapacitated.
You can turn failure into success in combat. If you miss with an attack roll, you can roll it again with advantage.
Once you do so, you can’t use this feature again until you finish a short or long rest.
Stroke of Luck
You have an uncanny knack for succeeding when you need to. If your attack misses a target within range, you can turn the miss into a hit. Alternatively, if you fail an ability check, you can treat the d20 roll as a 20.
Once you use this feature, you must finish a short or long rest before you can use it again.