Well first off Being a Thief is an art form. So try to treat it as such.
I think the most important thing you can learn about being a thief is to study your mark. It can take me anywhere from five minutes up to thirty minutes to make my move. Look at them, listen to them, study them and then decide whether or not to reach into their containers and remove their gems or coins.
If caught. Dont run immediately. Have a little interaction with your mark. This can be done from hiding if you cant look them in the eye. Role-play it out or at least try. You could end up in jail or dead, but you did choose to be a thief, right?
Carry herbs. When that big warrior takes off your hand your going to need them.
Study your town. Every good thief knows of his best escape routes and a good place to hide out when he must run.
Blend into a crowd. Now think about it. What fool would walk up to lone person or an adventurer standing in an open field swinging a big chunk of steel and try to reach into their pockets. ::shrug:: Not I.
Stealing from hiding is not a practice I would recommend.
Get some backroom access to a few shops around town. Many a thief aid if you know how to use them. But youll figure it out as the years go by.
Dont pick on the young. If you're on your tenth training there is no reason for you to be stealing down in the Kobold Village. Its a good way to get a bunch of us thieves after your hide. Makes us all look bad you see.
Don't steal when wounded. Now who would go around reaching into people's pockets with a hole in their chest?
Do not steal in the East tower or in the Guild. Believe me you don't want to make ememies of fellow Rogues.
DONT BE A SNERT!!!
I'm going to repeat myself again because this is very important. Study your mark! Don't play hit and run. This is when you reach into everyones pockets that enters the room without even looking at them or reach into their pockets and run. I state this for two reasons. One, It makes us respectable thieves look bad. ::smirk:: And two, If you reach into the wrong persons pocket they may hunt you down like a pack of wolves til you can run no more.
Be polite and know what you're going to say if caught. Often a quick tongue will get you out of trouble.
Stay calm and do everything within your power to avoid combat with other adventurers.
Protect yourself from being dragged outside the gate. If you know what I mean.
Be alert to your surroundings. Highlight the Constable and the phrase, "You suddenly have the strangest feeling you are being watched." This simple phrase is a thief's worse enemy. So be quick on your toes and hide!
Travel light. It's hard to slip into the shadows and stay out of sight when all that extra equipment is clanking about. Also helps in getting dressed quickly after you have served your time.
Don't trust the animals that wander about the streets of the city. Never know whos pet it might be.
And NEVER log out of the game if you're caught stealing!
The Park thief.
I DO reccomend stealing in the park when you are young for practice. This is where you'll learn from your mistake and take you lumps.
Personally, after a certain training point the chances of you getting caught are slim to none. I see No in character reason for the now common trend of Park thieves. They look at the mark to see an age and profession. Which really is using Game mechanics to your advantage. Hell, many just sit there and flaunt the gem in front of the mark.
When will I steal? I steal when I need coins or when some one flashes a gem in front of my face, or jingles the coins in their pockets.
Most of my stealing is done when I return to town wounded and need a few extra coins to pay the herbalist. Or to have a damaged lockpick repaired. Saves me the trouble of having to go to the very public bank. On my trek to the elven nations I needed coins for the ferry and carts, so I stole them. Some unexpecting lad was pulling gems out a box the other day and of course the sparkle caught my eye. I could sit myself in the park all day and steal (which many do). Now would a pickpocket stand in one place for hours on end with out moving and think no one would be the wiser. I don't think so.
As mentioned above things are about to change.