Con men and Cutthroats : A Table of 50 Specialists For Your Thieves Guild.

Posted by: Jason Silverain / Category: , , , , , , , , ,

Hugo and Sandurs were considered in the streets the big men to be scared of, the arm breakers of the Twisted Fist who come to visit if you had caused trouble and need some 'persuasion' or just needed to vanish but right now the two large men shuffled nervously shrinking away from their boss, this wouldn't be an issue normally but right now Karsh Krangtooth needed answers.

“I said where's Trino ya mangy gits, he was supposed to meet me once I got out now where is he?” practically growling the words as he advanced menacingly, the burly half orc with surprising speed grasping Hugo by the collar hauling him off his feet the muscles in his arm barely tensing under the human weight.

“H..He's dead boss him and all the high up lads, found them in his den sat all around the table throats cut..” Hugo gasping his reply squirming in his bosses grip trying to angle his face away from the scarred half orcs tusks, “Bollocks, Trino wouldn't be offed so easily..” Karsh found the words coming out of his mouth even as the wave of disbelief began to fade leaving a hollow emptiness behind. “Its true boss I swear, we think some bugger magiced him..” Sandurs stepped forward now to his partners defence his face mirroring the fear of their boss going berserk as he continued “Err.. thats not all boss, they raided the guild coffers in his place, took everything even the secret stuff..”

The silence over the next few minutes was unnerving as still holding Hugo Karshs lowered his head in thought, the two arm breakers sharing a worried glance unwilling to be the first to speak.
“So who did it?” The quietness of their bosses voice only served to worry the pair further as if they were seeing the calm beyond the storm.
Swallowing nervously Hugos voice almost cracked as he replied “We think it was those Blood Talon bastards from over the north side because of the red sash pinned to the table by a dagger.. thats their callin card ain't it?”

In the fantasy genre bandits, gangs and thieves are found lurking in every city either in the alleyways or shady taverns the party may visit. To be truly organised guild whose presence rises above the typical band of fighters and rogues a guild needs specialists that give them an edge over their rivals and the city guard.
Working together with some of my group and the lovely lady of Buzy Bobbins we created a table of 50 Thieves Guild Specialists to populate your world, my method is to roll about five times and pick the three that suit your guild the best or for a truly huge guild roll twice for each gang within the guild.

I know because of the layout the table may be difficult to read so click here for easy viewing.

1. Lookout Beggar: This is a member of the thieves guild who regularly dresses as a beggar as cover. Before a big job the thief will join a group of nearby beggars as to appear as part of the scenery however they are keeping an eye out for the routines of the locals in the area to help the guild find the best opportunity to strike.

26. The Tax Collector: This tax collector is also under the employ of the thieves guild. They carry out their normal job within the city collecting taxes and inspecting businesses but will report on guild owned fronts as if they were regular businesses to help keep them secret.
2. Messenger Children: These street kids are well known to the thieves guild they tend to pass pieces of paper with encoded messages or spoken code between members at assigned locations and times. They do not tend to participate in the crimes themselves and younger children do not know the meaning of the messages when questioned by town guards. When older the children have the opportunity to become full members of the guild.

27. Out of town Hideaway: This lovely family own a sweet little farmhouse just outside of town. It all seems completely ordinary but their house contains a number of secret hiding spaces and the house is sometimes used by thieves guild members who need to escape the law before they slip away under the cover of night.
3. The Sewer Dweller: This beggar has spent much of their life living in the sewers, basements and other underground areas of this city. They may not look like much but they are the go to person for anyone wishing to find their way across the city in secret for smuggling large amounts of goods or a quick get away.

28. The Sewer Jack: By bribing these sewer watchmen with a handful of coin the guild gains access to the sewers to get around unrecorded, they may also have a (somewhat reluctant) guide or a note of the patrol routes and schedules of the honest Sewer Jacks.
4. A Beggar With A Pet: This beggar owns a pet or other small animal and uses the pet to get more donations and information from passer bys than they would normally. The animal can also be used for their defence or distraction.

29. The Bribed Town Guardsman: A guard who grew up on the streets. They are a member of the thieves guild in secret and can sometimes help a member in need if they are in trouble. However there is a limit to how often they can do this without risking revealing their secret.
5. Street Performer: This is an expert showman who performs shows in the street for the entertainment of passers by to provide a distraction for trainee pickpockets.

30. Maid/ Manservant: This person works in a local building of high importance in an ordinary job. They are stationed there as a permanent spy and report any news of importance to the guild.

6. The Soup Stall Owner: This person cooks up a cauldron full of hot soup every day and sells it by the bowlful at their stall. The guild pays the stall owner to give soup to the street kids under their employment. He is well known around the local beggars and will sometimes swap a bowl of soup for some useful information from them.

31. The Bar Fight Professionals: Troupe of performers who specialise in staging fights between themselves. They provide distractions for other members, they can also be asked to start a bar fight or street riot if the right crowd can be found and then slip away from the chaos.
7. The Goon Squad: This group is responsible for jobs such as alley tolls or shaking down businesses for protection money. They mostly rely on brute strength and intimidation to get the job done and are not relied on for finer or quieter tasks. They are often the most well known to the city guard and may be used as scape goats by the guild.

32. The Diviner: A spell caster who specialises in fortune telling spells. Some members of the guild may come to a diviner for some advice on what to prepare for in important jobs. Other guild members prefer real information however not completely trusting information gathered by spells alone. In a high magic setting a diviner will also shield guild headquarters from being scryed by other spell casters and scary particular targets in the city.

8. A Large Enthusiastic Thug: This thug is of a large humanoid race or simply a very well built human. This thug is not very bright but will enthusiastically fight anyone their friends at the thieves guild point them towards. They can normally be found on jobs with someone who acts as their handler and very rarely alone.

Alternative: Well built human who believes they are cut out for the task of being a sneaky thief but due to general size and clumsiness they are not as competent as their fellows. They may be deployed as a distraction to the real burglary happening elsewhere or even be a fall guy for the real thieves.

33. The rabble rouser: This is a professional performer whose aim is to stir up trouble. With the careful use of speeches and lies they can turn groups against other groups or incite a mob against a single target or group.

The rabble rouser may only incite hatred against one target at a time and depending on the size of the target group could spend several weeks on one job.
Example uses of this may be to get public support in removing a particular member of the guard or noble from power or to put a dampener on other guilds activities by encouraging the public not to buy from their front shops.
9. Old Mercenary: Retired mercenary hired by the guild when they need someone threatening or killed.

34. The Disloyal Rogue: For some reason this thief is no longer loyal to the guild leader, he is looking to improve his position or earn extra money. He will be easy to bribe if the party offers to help him in either of these goals.
10. Were Creature: This member is a were creature. By day they are mild mannered and even an upstanding member of the community. But by night or the light of the full moon they become muscle for the thieves guild.

35. Backstreet Cleric: Heals suspicious wounds from traps and security systems which a thief may encounter in his day to day activities.
11. A Talented Sniper: This thief is talented in bows or cross bows and is often called upon for assassinations or passing messages with well placed shots. They can sometimes be found in the shadows above a meeting between guild members and other gangs just in case something goes ary.

36. The Animal Trainer: This member trains animals for other members of the guild. This may range from ordinary guard dogs to something more unusual such as animals who are trained to sniff out certain substances or provide timely distractions. They may also have a collection of messenger animals. While birds can be common for this purpose other animals common to the city can be trained and pass almost unnoticed with enough skill.

12. The Door Guard: A bouncer for one of the guilds fronts, they know exactly who is in the guild and allows them through to back rooms.

37. A Retired Expert Thief: He has impressive skills and much experience but has long since retired. While his body may not be as agile as it used to be he hopes to lead a group of skilled young recruits on one last big job.

13. The Tavern Landlord: An accomplice who works a local tavern. For a fee they are quite happy to switch out drinks of their patrons for ones of stronger alcohol content. They also act as ears on the street and brokers of gossip.
38. The Talent Scout: This person is always on the lookout in town for potential guild members. They look for people with talents the guild needs though they are often able to hold there own in a fight as other gangs do not like them luring away their members.
14. The Boarding House Owner: This location provides a safe place to stay for guild members or visiting allies, may have houses in other cities for guild members who need to travel.

39. The Cat Burglar: This thief specialises in infiltrating buildings from the second story upwards. They know their way around the city rooftops and can climb them with ease.
15. The Fisherman (And Boat Crew): Only guilds near a large river or the sea will have a fisherman under their employ. Then not needed by the guild the boat will be used for fishing but the guild could use it to smuggle people across the water or to larger boats waiting out of view of any town watch. They may also recover items which have been sunk to the bottom of the water in any misadventures by fellow guild members.

40. The Contact (And Gang): This person generally acts as a charismatic contact for ordinary people who wish to employ the services of the guild. While it is widely thought that they carry out meetings alone they in fact have a small team of highly competent thieves and fighters who hide in the shadows around meetings in case anything goes awry.
16. Brewer/Moonshiner: This guild member makes counterfeit alcohol which may be sold in false bottles this cheap knockoff can sometimes fool nobles into paying a high price for ordinary quality liquor. They also make strong moonshine which is sold cheaply amongst the poorer districts.

41. The Gambler: A very skilled gambler (also a very skilled cheat) who can be sent to win money or useful assets from nobles, occasionally they have convinced fools to part with deeds to land or buildings. However sometimes the gambler may be tasked with allowing someone to win to draw them into further high stakes games.
The gambler can find themselves in a unique position, sometimes invited to high stakes gambling games putting them in a position to gain information from sources outside the guilds usual contacts.

17. The Alchemist: The alchemist makes items for the guild, they will be particularly important in towns where detect magic is often used and non magical alternatives may be desired. They may send members out to find certain ingredients for their latest project.

42. Guild Cook: In a busy guild house a special cook may be employed to help feed members in the guild. The cook specialises in making hearty meals for a large amount of people from the limited ingredients available. This helps keep guild morale and loyalty high.
18. The Jeweller: A fence for jewels and jewellery often using stolen materials in creating new jewellery if a piece is too well known to sell. They have a keen eye for how much a gem is worth and have contacts in other cities to help sell on high profile pieces.

43. The Trap Maker: This person specialises in making traps. They are often highly prized in large guilds who need a collection of quality traps for practice, protection or competition between elite members, some trap makers even sell their traps publicly so that should the guild need to target an estate they know how to beat the defences.
They may pay adventurers to being back traps from dungeons undamaged for study. Traps which are very old or very unusual will be most highly prized however they may still get excited over a description of a large unmovable trap and being able to inspect the wound it caused the adventurer.

19. Antique Dealer: This antique dealer knows how to get stolen items into and out of the city. A particularly successful trick is to make a authentic but stolen art piece look like a fake even to other trained professionals. In this way he can smuggle the occasional high profile item out of the city with ease.

44. The locksmith: The locksmith is an expert in making and picking locks. They have made a number of practice locks for trainees in the guild. He makes lock picks for all occasions, a tool set by this person can cost more than average but will contain something for even the most stubborn of locks. Once a year they make the most dastardly set of locks and traps with a monster thrown in for good measure to use as a gauntlet for the most promising of trainees. Those who complete it get put forward for the most lucrative of jobs those who don't generally end up being carted to the clerics.

20. The Seamstress: A talented group of seamstresses, while they have a legitimate store front they also copy the patterns of any uniforms they get in for repair and can replicate them with some time and cost.

45. The Guild Interrogators: This intimidating fellow is used by the guild to extract information from captives or contacts working mostly through intimidation but is not afraid to resort to violence. He can often be found with a team of thugs.

21. Madame Of The Brothel: The Madame is a competent business women who leads and protects her team of ladies of the night. She can take many roles within the thieves guild. She can provide a front and money laundering services along with perfect opportunities to provide blackmail materials against certain targets.

46. The Poisoner: This is a experienced chief who can make very fine foods and sometimes does so for the masters of the thieves guild. However their main skill is to disguise the taste and smell of poisons within fine foods. This helps other guild members slip poisons into the food of noble targets where is is very difficult for the nobles aides to detect it.

22. The Weapons Supplier: Need equipment for a job? The this individual can supply weapons from his warehouse. Items are generally loaned or rented from the warehouse per job. The owner of the warehouse keeps records of what equipment they have and who is using it. They also tend to buy up excess weapons from adventurers coming into town. Ever wondered who even needs all those +1 daggers you keep bringing into town?

47. The Accountant/Banker: The guild accountant helps to hide extra income from front organisations and helps to hide payments from the guild to members who need to seem legitimate. Unlike the tax man the accountant often uses legal loopholes to minimise costs and may even bring opportunities to the attention of the guild master.
23. Potion Supplier: A cleric or wizard friendly to the guild. The guild subsidises the potions they make so they can be sold at a lower price to guild members on guild appointed jobs.

48. The Guild Sorcerer: This rogue has few thieving skills, relying on his natural magic talents to get past traps, locks and guards. In large jobs he may be accompanied by a team who get him to the target which needs to be dispelled or disarmed when mundane means will not do.

24. The Miner/Stonemason: This is a member which may be brought along to old ruins to ensure it is safe to get into. In a large city the stonemason may also make hollow gargoyles or other stone features for buildings. These may actually contain a weapon or other necessary items for guild members escaping over the rooftops or breaking into the building.

49. The Job Co-Ordinator: This guild member works mostly in guild administration. They know what jobs are being organised and when as well as collecting information on the movements of other gangs, before planning a very large job guild members must consult with the coordinator to ensure no other members are working a job in the same area on the same day to reduce the chance of foiling each other's plans. The log books belonging to the co-ordinator are very well guarded and will often be written in code that only the co-ordinator understands.

25. The city archivist: This person has access to the city archives, can sometimes be relied upon to find blueprints of various buildings or maps to the city. Their services cannot be used too heavily as it may out them as a guild member or if bribed/ blackmailed into service may make this noticeable to others nearby.
50. The Masked Persona: This thief does not actually exist, it is a fake persona used by the guild to make many jobs look like the work of a single masked thief to help hide the existence of the guild.
To create this fictional personality the guild may have several copies of the same mask or use a particular calling card after certain jobs. Some jobs may be carried out simply to attribute it to this fictional thief by having them dramatically escape over the city rooftops where they may be seen by many of the townspeople. The bigger the thief's legend the easier it is to hide behind them.

Trino had been was feared within the guild as one of the two guildmasters the other which of course was Karsh, the two had come into town over a decade ago and taken over most of the gangs on the south and east of the city focusing on the slums and ghettos as a source manpower, the desperate and brutish ever ready to join the new founded guild as a chance of advancement they never had anywhere else.

Karsh Krangtooth was the obvious muscle of the two but possessed an cunning for street combat and organisation with a fiery temper and ability to stay standing, with his presence so common in any violent dispute the guard thought him nothing than an arm breaker for the guild and rarely held him in the cells more than was required. Trino had no last name or nickname but his name came to cause fear whenever it was heard spoken. Well educated, nimble and soft spoken many thought him a disowned noble but the man had a strangeness to him, taking a perverse delight in the pain of others not to mention the girls that would vanish after spending the night with him.
There would be many who would be relieved at the death of Trino but Karsh Krangtooth was not one of them.

With slowly his arm lowed releasing the quaking Hugo, his mind whirring Karshs turbulent mind settled into what it knew best a plan of attack. “So.. we lost all of Trinos go to lads.. anyone else missing or anything else you wanna tell me?”
“Well.. err well not heard anythin about that Thief of Stars recently, think he got what he was after and left the city, never know with these independents and we couldn't find out who he was either. Um.. I remember now that half elf lass from the Oaklane umm.. damm the good stealthy one can't remember her name anyhow her group is gone.”

Seeing his boss gesture for details Sandur continued “The gnome or what we think was the gnome got pulled out the river, wasn't enough left of the body to tell we think thats how the Blood Talons knew everything, must of tortured the poor bugger. The lanky chap with the blond hair was last seen drinking at the docks with Captain Adrans lads, got himself press ganged we think and the girl herself Trino sent her on some job out of town to some village somewhere.. other than that everyones still breathing, might need to round up some of the lads since we've been leaderless for a few weeks.”

Karsh slowly nodded as he took in the details trying to recall the half elf.. Holly.. Mistletoe or Tiasel some nature sounding name, for a moment he considered the possibility that half elf may have been involved but dismissed it. She was skilled and it was no secret Trino was growing interested in her in a uncomfortable way but it was unlikely the mousy would have the guts to follow through. No this was an declaration of war from the northern guild and Karsh Krangtooth was going to turn their streets red.


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