For the Thief Staff see: Thief (Staff)
The Thief (盗賊 Tōzoku) is recurring combat/utility physical class in the Fire Emblem Series. Wielding Swords or Knives as their weapons of choice, the primary role of Thieves is to Steal and manipulate locks imposed on doors and chests. Enemy Thieves are capable of destroying villages, and unlike most other enemies, they often leave battles after accomplishing their self-motivated jobs of pillaging villages and/or looting chests.
History in the Series
In their original inception in Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light and Mystery of the Emblem, Thieves are unable to promote, and due to being frail combat-wise, are commonly tasked to perform support roles through their lock-picking skills.
The advent of Genealogy of the Holy War sees the Thief (シーフ Shīfu) class being able to promote for the first time in the series. Thief Fighters act as the promoted form of the class and are reputably capable fighters on the battlefield.
In Thracia 776, the Thief class is again able to promote into the Thief Fighter class. This incarnation of the class is particularly special for Lara; depending on whether the necessary requirements are met, she can promote from a Thief into either the Dancer or Thief Fighter classes. After this title, the Thief Fighter class is retired, though the later Rogue and Trickster classes fill the same niche of a promoted class that retains all functions of the original Thief class.
In TearRing Saga: Utna Heroes Saga thieves are reverted to being unable to promote. In the game, there are two versions of the Thief class: a playable version in the mercenary class category, and a NPC/Enemy version in the criminal class category. The enemy version has a slightly higher strength cap in exchange for a slightly lower speed cap.
In Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade, Thieves continued to be unable to class change.
Thieves are given a new promoted form in The Blazing Blade: the Assassin class, losing the ability to Steal in return for the Lethality skill. In The Sacred Stones, Thieves are given the additional option to promote into the Rogue class alongside Assassin.
In Path of Radiance, Volke is the only Thief who can promote into an Assassin. This promotion is done without an item, and is part of the main plot, in which Volke either leaves or is rehired as an Assassin for a fee of 50,000 gold.
In TearRing Saga: Berwick Saga, Czene, the playable Thief, is able promote into Grassrunner, and is the only thief able to promote at all. They wield Knives, making them good for inflicting injuries to make it easier to capture units. All thieves have the Locktouch and Hide skills and usually possess a stealing skill: Czene and some enemy thieves have Mug, whereas Sedy is the sole user of the Steal skill. There is also a bow variant of the class used by enemy units.
There are no playable Thieves (盗人 Shīfu) to promote in Radiant Dawn, effectively making it an enemy-only class, though it is coded to promote to Rogue within the game. All playable characters in the Thief class line come pre-promoted as Rogues or, in Volke's case, as an Assassin.
Thieves are known as Outlaws (シーフ, Shīfu) in the localized versions of Fates and are treated as a Nohrian class. Outlaws wield Bows instead of Swords and Knives. They are given the further option to promote into Bow Knight alongside Adventurer, the Bow using equivalent to the Awakening Trickster. The Hoshidan counterparts to the Outlaw are the Archer class in terms of Reclassing, mirroring Outlaws' bow usage, and are similar to the Ninja class in terms of utility, even sharing the Locktouch skill with the latter class.
The Nohrian thief-type class, Outlaw, reappears in Fire Emblem Warriors as the base class of Niles, in which it acts as a clone of the Archer class. There is also enemy-only versions of both Thief and Outlaw which act as clones of the Myrmidon class, with the added ability to open chests. Additionally, the Hoshidan Ninja and Master Ninja classes act as the Hoshidan variant of the Thief class.
In Three Houses, the Thief Class is an optional promoted class of the Commoner or Noble class if the unit passes the Certification Exam at Lv. 10 with a Sword Skill Level of C or higher and an Intermediate Seal. The other option with these requirements is the Mercenary class.
In addition, there is also an enemy-only variant of the Thief class called Ruffian. Ruffians are much weaker, have no class skills and appear exclusively in the prologue.
The Thief class primarily focuses on agility in combat, and can dodge the majority of enemy attacks. However, their low Strength impairs their utility as combat units as they can rarely inflict heavy damage on foes. When raising a Thief, it is recommended to have hardier units cover them while the Thief concentrates on weakened foes. They are somewhat like weak Myrmidons and score well in the Skill, Speed and (sometimes) Luck departments to offset their lower Strength, Defense and Resistance. Though weak, their high speed means they will double most opponents. Thieves with a high Skill rating can perform regular critical hits. A well-raised Thief can hold their own in combat, dealing reliable damage cause of their high accuracy(skill) while remaining almost completely untouched.
Thieves with low offensive capabilities are still useful as support units. Thieves have higher Movement than other infantry units, making them good for quick assaults or reaching objectives quickly. They can see farther than other units in Fog of War battles, making them perfect for scouting. They can also pilfer supplies from the enemy with their ability to Steal, robbing enemies of assets such as medicine or staves. With sufficient Strength, they can even steal weapons (depending on the game), especially valued if they can steal unique enemy equipment. These, alongside their ability to open doors and treasure chests without keys, make them valuable assets on any player's army. However, as they are physically frail, it is advisable to not leave them unguarded at all times.
When promoted into an Assassin, apart from the normal boost in all parameters, the Thief gains more points in HP, Resistance and Defense than any of their other stats. They lose their ability to steal from enemies, but retain the ability to use Lockpicks. They also gain the Lethality ability, thus making Assassins much more combat-oriented than Thieves. Rogues, conversely, keep all the abilities of the Thief class, becoming even more effective in that regard. Their price to pay is possessing weaker combat stats as compared to Assassins. However, they have a critical bonus, which, while not being as large as the Assassins, is still hefty when compared to that of Thieves.
Save for Lara and Thieves from the Tellius Series and from Genology of the Holy War, all Thieves throughout the series have had the same uniform; common clothing with little/no armour, a cloak to use as a disguise and a bag or sack containing their plunder (this isn't shown during battle sequences or cutscenes). Except those already mentioned, most Thieves come with minute differences between games; like in Fates, Outlaws are shown with a quiver of arrows. While generic male Thieves are shown with their hoods up, female Thieves wear a cloth headpiece to conceal their hair to avoid notice, although this is only shown on map sprites and concept art.
|FE4||Steal||Class skill of the Thief and Thief Fighter classes.|
|FE5||Steal||Class skill of the Thief and Thief Fighter classes.|
|Class skill of the Thief (F) class.|
Class skill of the Thief class.
|Class skill of the Thief and Assassin classes.|
Class skill of the Thief and Assassin classes.
|Base skill of all foot units.|
Class skill of the Thief, Rogue and Whisper classes.
|Learnt at Level 1.|
Learnt at Level 10.
|Learnt at Level 1 and above.|
Learnt at Level 10 and above.
|Class Ability of Thieves.|
Class and Mastery Ability of Thieves.
|Base Class||Promotion Method||Promoted Class|
|FE4||Thief||Choose the "Class Change" option in the Home Castle when the relevant unit reaches Level 20.||Thief Fighter|
|FE5 (Standard)||Thief||Use a Knight Proof on a Level 10+ Thief.||Thief Fighter|
|FE5 (Lara)||Thief||In Chapter 12x, have Lara speak to Perne.||Dancer|
|FE7||Thief||Use a Fell Contract on a Level 10+ Thief.||Assassin|
|FE8||Thief||Use an Ocean Seal or a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Thief.||Assassin|
|Choose to rehire Volke at the end of Chapter 19.|
|FE13||Thief||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Thief.||Assassin|
|FE14||Outlaw||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Outlaw.||Adventurer|
|FE16||Thief||Have a Level 10+ Commoner or Noble with a Sword Skill Rank of C or Higher and an File:Fe16intermediateseal.pngIntermediate Seal take a Certification Exam||Hero (Male only)|
|FEW||Outlaw||Use a Master Seal on Niles.||Adventurer|
- Rickard - A thief who greatly admires Julian.
- Julian - Former member of the Soothsires.
- Dahl - Leader of the Raman Thieves.
- Barm - Boss in Fire Emblem: Archanea Saga.
- Dew - Thief who assisted in the rescue of Edain.
- Patty - Daughter of Brigid and the younger sister of Febail.
- Daisy - Sister of Asaello and the substitute character of Patty.
- Chad - An orphan raised in Araphen along with Lugh and Raigh.
- Astolfo - A spy from Ostia who is Igrene's long-lost husband, Gorlois.
- Cath - A thief who has a strong hatred for nobles.
- Matthew - A Happy-go-lucky spy from Ostia who's actually quite sly.
- Legault - Former member of the Black Fang known as the "The Hurricane" that left the group when it lost its way.
- Volke - A mercenary assassin who works under the drive of monetary gains.
- Sothe - An orphaned stowaway seeking a lost, unnamed companion.
- Niles - One of Leo's retainers and a Nohrian scoundrel who wags his saucy tongue at everyone.
- Nina - The calm and intelligent daughter of Niles who is prone to intense bouts of daydreaming.
- Anna - One of many savvy merchants of the same name known throughout the Fire Emblem franchise who are known for get-rich-quick schemes to expand their coin purses.
- Czene - A daughter of nomads that seeks to prove her worth.
- Sedy - An orphaned thief from Narvia that steals to provide for a group of other orphaned children.
- Kostas - Bandit who tried to kill Edelgard, Dimitri and Claude.
- Pallardó - Ex-merchant who gave himself to thievery, he doesn't seem to care in sacrifing others to save himself. Takes refuge at the ruined Garreg Mach Monastery.
- Every naturally-occurring thief-class character in Awakening - Gangrel, Gaius, and Anna (and all three characters' potential Morgan) - is a redhead.
- Thieves are often portrayed with a pack slung over their backs, as well as some manner of hooded cloak or cowl.
- Outlaws wielding bows in Fire Emblem Fates is likely a nod to Robin Hood, a historical outlaw/archer.