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Ranged thief?

Technically, thieves are allowed to carry crossbows and short bows. However, most of the magic crossbows and short bows in the game say in their description that they are "not usable" by thieves. I think a +1 short bow is the best that is usable.
So in terms of allowable weapons, exactly how viable is a ranged thief (or say, thief/mage) if you don't want to dual/multi it with a fighter class?

Comments

  • billbiscobillbisco Member Posts: 339
    Thief / Mage is very viable. After a certain point you don't get much more mileage from your thieving skills.

    As is Cleric / Thief but you do have that weapon restriction
  • MoribunnyMoribunny Member Posts: 21
    I know a lot of people play pure spellcasting thief/mages or use magic to supplement stealth/backstabbing, but I'm wondering about how capable a thief might be with ranged weapons such as bows, crossbows or slings
  • bob_vengbob_veng Member Posts: 1,775
    for thieves, it's not possible to have a particular focus on ranged combat because they can only put a pip in a ranged weapon and don't have any other way to become better in it. dexterity is already a prime attribute for a thief.

    so it's not possible to be especially good as a thief in ranged combat at the expense of something else. therefore you can only focus on ranged if you intentionally don't use melee when it's more opportune which then boils down to roleplaying choices and not strategy.

    with all that said, thieves are okay at ranged combat.
  • DJKajuruDJKajuru Member Posts: 2,552
    Hey @Moribunny , I have just finished a IWD+HoW+ToLM game and I had a ranged thief in my party, so here are my two cents:

    1- There are no good shortbows in IWD, but you will find some good ones in HoW. However, unless you've got a better archer in the party , there are plenty of magic arrows that complement your shortbow+1 (arrows of the hand, acid arrows...). Combined with your thief ranged bonuses and items/buffs he can still fight well using one.

    2- There are excellent light crossbows in the game , some are random drops while others may be found as official treasure or sellable items.

    3- The trick for a ranged thief is to keep getting proficient in all sorts of ranged weapons because you may run out of (magical) ammunition - start with bows and daggers (for that extra attack) then crossbows, darts , slings... that way you can use whatever seems more appropriate for the situation (acid arrows , bullets+2, bolts of lightning, magic darts...) .

    So I guess that is it , have fun with your ranged thief :)
    MoribunnyAerakar
  • MoribunnyMoribunny Member Posts: 21
    @DJKajuru that was immensely helpful. Thank you :smile:
    DJKajuru
  • billbiscobillbisco Member Posts: 339
    I would recommend Assassin if you want to be a ranged thief. Poison weapon makes a big difference with your damage. You can always dual to mage later. If you have a druid companion. Poison weapon stacks with Fire Seeds nicely.
    Balrog99KurumiAerakar
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 977
    Swashbuckler is also nice. The combat bonuses add damage which coupled with the high rate of fire for shortbows, daggers and darts make them particularly deadly with those weapons.
    ThacoBellDJKajuruAerakar
  • Tad_Has_A_Cold_OliveTad_Has_A_Cold_Olive Member Posts: 175
    Balrog99 said:

    Swashbuckler is also nice. The combat bonuses add damage which coupled with the high rate of fire for shortbows, daggers and darts make them particularly deadly with those weapons.

    Plus, if you don't ever intend to bring a Thief into melee range, you're never going to use that backstab/sneak attack feature that normal thieves have anyway. It's a shame there aren't any returning throwing daggers like that axe you can find.
    Kurumi
  • MeandreMeandre Member Posts: 12

    Balrog99 said:

    Swashbuckler is also nice. The combat bonuses add damage which coupled with the high rate of fire for shortbows, daggers and darts make them particularly deadly with those weapons.

    Plus, if you don't ever intend to bring a Thief into melee range, you're never going to use that backstab/sneak attack feature that normal thieves have anyway. It's a shame there aren't any returning throwing daggers like that axe you can find.
    There's one returning throwing dagger - "Lover" - but unfortunately you won't get it until the end of Heart of Winter. Unless they've taken it out for the EE. Have yet to complete HoW in the Enhanced Edition.
  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 977
    Another advantage of Swashie is the extra pip you can get in daggers. I almost forgot about that. Ooh, now I'm thinking about a dagger throwing half-orc swashbuckler! Time to restart (again).
    Aerakar
  • MoribunnyMoribunny Member Posts: 21
    Yes, a swash-mage was what I was planning!
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