Rules Cyclopedia Homebrew Assassin

I’m going to start a group using Rules Cyclopedia. It will be easier for me to make the transition since I’m starting a new group anyway, and this edition of the rules pulls to me more than the others (so far). it seems less complex than AD&D, and doesn’t require multiple rulebooks, so it seems like a good place to start playing Classic D&D.

This is a homebrew assassin class I made for Rules Cyclopedia/BECMI/BX. I wanted it to have 36 levels, while still following the balance shown in 1e and Advanced Edition Companion. I also wanted to distance it from the thief class- I mainly wanted to REPLACE the thief, which is essentially useless without deciding that no other characters are able to pick pockets, open locks, etc., which isn’t the kind of thing I want. In my game, if you want to be a Thief, steal something. Don’t pick a class.

The Assassin

Armor: Leather only, Shield

permitted Weapons: No Two-Handed or Bastard Sword

Hit Dice: 1d4 every level Prime Requisite: None. The Assassin gains no experience bonus for high stats.

Assassins advance at the same rate as Fighters, and use the Fighter attack roll and saving throw tables. At 9th level (Master Assassin) the Assassin gains the ‘disarm’, and ‘parry’ Combat Options and gains the ‘multiple attacks’ Fighter Combat Option at the same rate as the Fighter.
Assassins gain the following special abilities:

Backstab: when the assassin attacks unnoticed, he gets +4 to his attack roll and deals double the damage. At 5th level, he begins instead to deal triple damage, at 9th level, quadruple, and from 13th onwards quintuple. An Assassin with the Multiple Attacks Combat Option gains this bonus and multiplier on all his attacks (the +4 bonus is not factored in when determining whether he can hit his opponent on a roll of 2)

Assassination: if the assassin gains surprise, he may assassinate the target of his attack. This has a base 50% chance of success, increased by 5% for each of the assassin’s levels (to a maximum of +75% at 15th level) decreased 5% for every two levels/hit dice of the target. if the attempt is successful, the target is instantly killed.

Subterfuge: It is assumed that as part of an assassin’s training, he learned many skills that might be useful to one of this trade; skills such as manipulating small mechanisms (locks, clockwork), handling delicate or dangerous items without incident (poisoned blades), moving stealthily and unseen, and so on. The Assassin will always know how to use such skills, and will very likely have a much higher chance of success than other characters of the same level (DM’s discretion).

Many Faces: An Assassin may disguise himself, changing his appearance and stature, with extreme skill- the base chance of anyone seeing through the disguise is 2%, with other modifiers added if the assassin is disguised as some one of radically different stature, a different race or gender, etc. (if the assassin is trying to disguise himself as a specific person, there will be a large modifier if the observer is personally familiar with the person in question).

Scale Walls: An Assassin is specially trained to scale sheer surfaces without much heavy, noisy equipment. the base chance of success every 100′ is 85%, increasing by 1% every level. Other modifiers will be added at DM discretion, and may be numerous or few.

Learn Languages: An Assassin will learn more languages, typically, than his companions. An Assassin starts the game knowing one additional language. An Assassin may learn one additional language for each point of intelligence score over 14- these additional languages may be archaic, secret, or even alignment tongues (if they are used). However, only one such language can be learned per level above 8th, and though the Assassin is skilled at learning such, to find an appropriate text for especially rare languages may require questing.
Read Scrolls: At 12th level, an Assassin may read existing arcane scrolls- albeit with a 10% chance of backfiring and creating an unexpected effect.


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