Rogues were versatile masters of stealth, combat, and various skillful tricks. Where other adventurers had the power to defeat their enemies, rogues used their wits and their natural resourcefulness to exploit their foes' vulnerabilities as well as to lead their allies safely through dangerous environments, disarming traps and opening lock along the way.
Common to most cities in Ord, rogues were an incredibly diverse group, included burglars, assassins, and con artists as well as more lawfully employed persons, like locksmiths, investigators, exterminators, or treasure hunters. To a large extent, the criminal sort of rogue was considered more typical and both thieves' and assassins' guilds were found widely throughout the world, some of which were incredibly powerful, such as the Grey Knives. Regardless of their specific occupation, rogues shared a common affinity for cunning and daring feats of skill, as well as for getting into things others would rather be left unfound or unopened. Rogues of all sorts were resourceful and adaptable, having what could be called a “sixth sense” for avoiding peril, which helped them get out of the dangerous situations they often found themselves in.
Rogues chose their daring lifestyle for a variety of reasons. Some were driven by profit. Others hoped for fame as well as (or instead of) fortune. A few were simply daredevils seeking the thrill of a real challenge. Because of these traits rogues, although found on both sides of the law and equally as likely to serve good as evil, were often wary of lawful-aligned paladins. Many rogues, regardless of motives or morals, worshiped gods such as Parun, Mab or Cuelebre
Most rogues were primarily self-taught or learned their skills from a teacher, often a more experienced rogue. These more experienced rogues recruited apprentices as assistants in various jobs and schemes, allowing their students to develop their skills. Partings between mentor and student were rarely clean, however, and as a general rule rogues felt little camaraderie with other rogues unless they were part of the same guild. In fact, most rogues tended to view one another with even greater suspicion than they did non-rogues and most partnerships were short-lived.
Humans were among the best rogues, in large part due to their natural adaptability, which fit the modus operandi of most rogues to the letter. Elves and small folk due to their physical agility, were also well-suited to the life of a rogue. Among the best rogues were those from the tiefling race, whose cunning and aura of confidence served them well on such a path. Half-elves also made good rogues, though to a lesser extent, as did dwarves of all kinds many of whom were renowned for their expert skill with disarming traps or picking locks. Rogues could also be found among the more “savage” humanoids, particularly goblin-kin. Regardless of race, rogues were most common in the metropolitan cities of Findle, Thessan, Danasia and Herat Isle
Rogues were deadly but somewhat vulnerable front line combatants, preferring to strike from the shadows and dart back into them, either excelling at ranged or light melee attacks. All in all, in combat the rogue remained more interested in supporting teammates through the harassment of enemies — and slipping around to sneak attack — than in standing up to an opponent directly, as reflected in their choice of armor, which was typically leather or lighter. Some rogues played against this stereotype however and engaged in more brutal attacks, though still lacking the sheer combat endurance possessed by fighters and paladins. Rogues of all kinds were particularly skilled when wielding daggers or shuriken or when they had the opportunity to strike first.
The greatest value of rogues lay in the fact that they were the handymen. Without pure battle or magical power, a rogue could contribute in ways as varied as disarming traps, scouting enemies, and persuading possible allies, using their wealth of skills. And while rogues were more physically fragile than most other adventurers, many possessed an ability to avoid danger that could seem uncannily supernatural at times. Similarly, the mind of a rogue could be described as “slippery” and many rogues were infuriatingly difficult to charm or enchant.
Though all rogues retained training in stealth and the art of getting where they weren't supposed to be, many also had a varying degree of other skills. These skills were often dependent on the precise training of the rogue in question and most adhered, though not necessarily wholly, to one of the following martial traditions.
A self proclaimed master of the larcenous arts. Burglars, bandits, cutpurses, and other criminals typically follow this archetype, but so do rogues who prefer to think of themselves as professional treasure seekers, explorers, delvers, and investigators. In addition to improved agility and stealth, they learn skills useful for delving into ancient ruins, reading unfamiliar languages, and using magic items the untrained normally couldn’t employ.
Some rogues enhance their fine—honed skills of stealth and agility with magic, learning tricks of enchantment and illusion. These rogues include pickpockets and burglars, but also pranksters, mischief—makers, and a significant number of adventurers.
Some rogues eschew their martial training, instead choosing to focus more on people and on the influence and secrets they have. Many spies, courtiers, and schemers follow this archetype, leading lives of intrigue. Words are your weapons as often as knives or poison, and secrets and favors are some of your favorite treasures.
Not all who focus their training on the art of the blade are fighters. There are those who rely on speed, elegance, and charm in equal parts to win the day. While some warriors are brutes clad in heavy armor, their method of fighting looks almost like a performance. Duelists and pirates typically belong to this archetype. A Swashbuckler excels in single combat, and can fight with two weapons while safely darting away from an opponent.