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At character creation, the rogue class says under Key Ability:

Dexterity or Other

At 1st level, your class gives you an ability boost to Dexterity or an option from rogue’s racket.

Now, the thief racket allows such a rogue to use Dexterity (instead of Strength) to deal damage with finesse weapons. My interpretation was that this ability replaced the Dexterity ability boost (which seemed balanced at first; a Thief would use Dexterity for hit/damage and AC after all, letting the character concentrate on a single ability score without being a caster).

But recently I've seen the iconic rogue character sheet, and it seems that, as a thief rogue, the character's Dexterity was 18+. Is the iconic character sheet wrong? Or does the thief rogue keep the Dexterity ability boost and also gain the benefit of their racket?

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3 Answers 3

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Yes

The key ability for rogues says "Dexterity or other". As you noted, the "other" options come from your racket. Therefore, no matter which racket you pick you may still choose to have dexterity be your key ability and get a boost to it. The specifics of the thief racket don't change this.

However, to answer your question more directly, the thief racket does not add any new options for a key ability (the ruffian and scoundrel rackets both explicitly do this).

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    \$\begingroup\$ Your answer might also be improved by pointing out the relevant section of the other rogue's rackets that provide an alternate option for their key ability score (e.g. the relevant sentence under "Scoundrel"), so OP knows what to look for. It seems like OP's misinterpreting what "an option from rogue’s racket" means. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    May 22, 2020 at 5:29
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Thief Rogues do get a Dexterity Ability Boost

All classes, regardless of any other choice they make, get an Ability Boost in their Class (or Spell) DC Ability. The Thief gives up the option to choose Strength or Charisma (granted by the Ruffian and Scoundrel rackets respectively), and must take Dexterity for this choice.

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A Thief Rogue gets a class ability boost in Dexterity

Rogues, like all other classes, get one ability boost at character creation from their class. This ability boost is for their key ability score, which is the ability their Class DC is based off of.

Some classes (the Champion, Fighter, Monk, Ranger, and Rogue as of writing this answer) give the option to choose from a list of ability scores to receive the starting class ability boost in. Rogues are slightly different; a Rogue can only choose Dexterity for their ability boost unless they choose a Racket that gives them an additional option.

The Ruffian Racket extends your options to Dexterity or Strength:

You can choose Strength as your key ability score.

And the Scoundrel Racket extends your options to Dexterity or Charisma:

You can choose Charisma as your key ability score.

The Thief Racket doesn't grant any additional options, so you must choose Dexterity for your ability boost if you choose that Racket.

This ability boost is your class boost as all classes receive at level 1; you do not gain an additional boost from your class beyond that.

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