General Prestige Class : Thief-Acrobat

Like any large guild, a thieves' guild has many specialists within its ranks - pickpockets, burglars, swindlers, and even highway robbers. None of these, however, have the prestige of a thief-acrobat - the superlative second-story burglar who is infamous for daring escapades across the city's rooftops.

The thief-acrobat excels at getting into and out of places no one else can. If every street-level entrance to the Jewelers' Guildhouse is locked and well guarded, the thief-acrobat simply jumps atop the building from the roof of a nearby inn, throws a grappling hook to the highest minaret, runs up the attached rope to a shuttered window, and quickly picks the lock. Should her escape go awry once she has the goods, her gymnastic combat style keeps her our of harm's way.

Most thief-acrobats began as rogues and worked their way up through the guild's ranks. Members of other classes - particularly the barbarian and illusionist - often find the acrobatics and climbing skills of the thief acrobat prestige class quite attractive as well.

Adventuring parties often encounter an NPC thief-acrobat in the midst of some crime. Sometimes, however, a thief-acrobat hires adventurers to help with particularly dangerous capers, or even to create diversions while she works.


To qualify to become a Thief-Acrobat, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:

Class Skills

The thief-acrobat's class skills are Appraise, Balance, Bluff, Climb, Craft, Disable Device, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Open Lock, Perform, Search, Tumble, and Use Rope.

Skill Points at Each Level: 6 + Int modifier.

Class Features

All the following are class features of the thief-acrobat prestige class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Thief-acrobats are proficient with all simple weapons. With the exception of sneak attacks, the thief-acrobat cannot use any of her class features while wearing armor bulkier than light.

Kip Up (Ex): A thief-acrobat can stand up from a prone position as a free action.

Unbounded Leap (Ex): A thief-acrobat's height does nor limit her jumping distance (horizontal or vertical).

Fast Balance (Ex): At 2nd level, the thief-acrobat gains the ability to balance easily on a precarious surface. A successful Balance check (for DCs, see the Balance skill description in Chapter 4 of the Player's Handbook) allows her to move her speed rather than half her speed under such conditions.

Improved Trip: At 2nd level, the thief-acrobat gains Improved Trip as a bonus fear, even if she does nor have the Expertise feat prerequisite.

Improved Evasion (Ex): At 3rd level, the thief-acrobat gains improved evasion (see Rogue abilities) if she does nor already have it.

Slow Fall (Ex): At 3rd level, the thief-acrobat also gains the slow fall ability (see Monk abilities). Initially, she takes falling damage as though each fall were 20 feet shorter than it actually is. The falling distance that she can ignore increases by 10 feet for every three thief-acrobat levels she gains. If the character already has the slow fall ability from a previous class, the distances do not stack.

Defensive Fighting Bonus: The fact that the thief-acrobat is perpetually whirling and spinning makes her a difficult target to hit. When fighting defensively, she gains a +4 dodge bonus to AC rather than the normal +2 bonus or the +3 bonus for having 5 or more ranks in Tumble. When executing the total defense standard action, she gains a +8 dodge bonus to AC rather than the usual +4 bonus or the +6 bonus for having 5 or more ranks in Tumble.

Sneak Attack: The thief-acrobat gains the sneak attack ability (see Rogue abilities) at 4th level if she does not already have it. She gains +1d6 damage with this attack initially, but this rises to +2d6 at 9th level. If she already has the sneak attack ability from a previous class, the damage bonuses stack.

Cartwheel Charge: By somersaulting and cartwheeling in a straight line toward a foe 10 feet or more away, the thief-acrobat of at least 5th level can make an unusual charge attack, gaining the standard +2 bonus on attack rolls and -2 penalty to AC for a charge. Executing the cartwheel charge requires a Tumble check (DC 20). Success means that the thief-acrobat deals sneak attack damage to her target on a successful hit; failure means she achieves the normal results of a charge but does not get sneak attack damage.

Fast Climb (Ex): By 5th level, the thief-acrobat is an expert at climbing. A successful Climb check allows her to move her full speed rather than half her speed in any situation that would normally require such a check. Fast climb counts as a miscellaneous full-round action.

Prone Defense: By 6th level, the thief-acrobat is accustomed to rolling and spinning on the ground. Opponents who attack her while she's prone don't get the +4 attack bonus that they ordinarily would receive.

Defensive Roll: At 7th level, the thief-acrobat gains the defensive roll ability (see Rogue abilities) if she does not already have it.

Move Anywhere (Ex): By 8th level, a thief-acrobat can move normally even while balancing on a precarious surface or climbing. In either case, she moves her speed with each move-equivalent action and can even run if desired, as long as she does so in a straight line. Furthermore, she can take 10 on all Climb and Balance checks unless she's engaged in melee combat.

Fight Anywhere (Ex): By 10th level, the thief-acrobat can fight normally even while climbing or balancing on something. This means, for example, that a thief-acrobat could climb a few steps up a nearby wall to earn the attack bonus for higher ground while engaged in melee. She must, however, keep at least one hand free to climb.

Thief-AcrobatHit Die: d6
1st+0+0+2+0Kip up, unbounded leap
2nd+1+0+3+0Fast balance, Improved Trip
3rd+2+1+3+1Improved evasion, slow fall (20 ft.)
4th+3+1+4+1Defensive fighting bonus, sneak attack +1d6
5th+3+1+4+1Cartwheel charge, fast climb
6th+4+2+5+2Prone defense, slow fall (30 ft.)
7th+5+2+5+2Defensive roll
8th+6+2+6+2Move anywhere
9th+6+3+6+3Slow fall (40 ft.), sneak attack +2d6
10th+7+3+7+3Fight anywhere

Source: Complete Adventurer
Song and Silence

General Prestige Classes