Some scenarios in Thief can seem almost hopeless, but there are many ways to tip the odds in your favor. The following tips will help you survive and thrive in Garrett’s perilous world.
1. Keep to the Shadows
Remaining hidden is the top priority of any thief. Guards are quick to act once they’ve identified an intruder, so always keep out of sight by lurking in shadows. Even attentive watchmen will have a tough time spotting you while you remain crouched and hidden in the dark. If you must move through lit areas, perform the swoop maneuver to zip from cover to cover as quickly as possible.
2. Stay Silent
Even when you’re completely hidden, making noise can still betray your presence. The faster Garrett moves, the more noise he creates—especially when crossing noisy surfaces like broken glass or water. Walk slowly when guards are about, or better yet, crouch and sneak very slowly to avoid making any noise at all. As a bonus, Garrett’s low profile makes him more difficult to spot while sneaking.
3. Exploit the Environment
When guards seem impossible to avoid, use Focus to scan Garrett’s surroundings. Look for ropes, ladders, climbable walls, and crawl spaces that can be used to slip through fortified areas unseen. Douse torches with water arrows and strike light switches with blunt arrows to create darkness from afar. Clever thieves find ways to lower their risk by exploiting the world around them.
4. Lift All of the Loot
Practically everything that Garrett discovers as he slinks about the City can be pocketed for profit. From mundane goods like cups and cutlery to rare prizes like fine art and precious jewelry, everything has value. Garrett’s pockets never fill up, so grab all the loot you can find and then spend your ill-gotten gold at shady merchants to purchase arrows, tools, and upgrades that will make you an even sneakier thief.
5. Come Prepared
Before undertaking dangerous missions, wise thieves know the value of stocking up on useful supplies. Rope arrows are always handy, for they let you reach secret areas and hidden treasures. Water arrows are useful for dousing flames to create darkness, while blunt arrows are good for distracting guards and triggering remote switches. Aggressive thieves should always carry a full supply of broadhead arrows so they can silence threats with lethal headshots from afar.
6. Explore the City
It pays to explore the City between missions, for there’s plenty of swag to steal. Search the City thoroughly to discover all manner of precious plunder, along with several shady merchants that peddle useful resources. As you explore, you’ll also learn how the City’s various areas connect, and discover safe and reliable shortcuts that will facilitate future expeditions.
7. Complete Side Jobs
While exploring the City, be on the lookout for wealthy clients that offer you special side jobs. These optional missions are quite profitable, often leading to extra riches. Garrett’s friend Basso offers plenty of side jobs that are easy to complete as you explore the City. Other clients, such as Ector and Vittori, offer more involved jobs that come with greater risk—and even greater rewards.
8. Replay Missions
If you just can’t get enough gold, feel free to replay any mission you’ve beaten. Simply return to the mission’s entry point while exploring the City, and you’ll have the option to play the mission all over again. Replaying missions is beneficial, for all of the loot items and resources will be back in the mission, there to be collected again. You can also attempt to complete any Thieving Challenges you may have missed on your first playthrough, lining your pockets with even more gold by achieving playstyle bonuses at the mission’s end.
9. Know Your Foes
Garrett’s world is filled with danger, the most common and ubiquitous threats being armed guards. Though Garrett can battle these watchmen in direct combat, they are extremely dangerous in groups. Guards armed with swords are formidable melee combatants, while crossbow watchmen can slay Garrett with lethal bolts from afar. Guards that carry torches or lanterns can detect Garrett in the shadows, but their lights go out the moment they’re KO’d or slain. A guard’s armor is also worthy of study: thick chain mail offers far better protection compared to leather armor, while helmets will deflect headshots unless you’re careful to aim for the face or throat.
10. Flee as Needed
Thieves that steal and run away, live to loot another day. Whenever you’re detected and guards begin to swarm, swallow your pride and flee to safety. Heights are often ideal; look for ropes, ladders, and climbable walls that lead to safe vantages. Crawl spaces can also offer you a means of escape. Take shelter for a few moments, and the guards will assume you’ve fled the area and return to their posts. Let’s try that again, shall we?
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