The Player's Handbook mentions that high intelligence is very important for a thief, but Intelligence Table I does not list a minimum value for a thief, only for an assassin.

Is there a minimum value?


No, there's no minimum Int value for a thief. The lack of other mechanics in AD&D1 leaves a lot that is later moved to proficiencies (and in 3.x, skills) to simple attribute checks, and so one could reasonably expect a 1E DM to call for lots of Int Rolls to do various theifly things, like case a joint, spot the watch, etc.

Despite all that, no minimum was ever required to be a Thief; the sole requirement was (and even in later editions, still is) Dex 9+, and only Dex.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Exactly - the rules make you free to be a bad thief, or at least not a very subtle one. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk - SE stop being evil Nov 6 '10 at 15:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ Isn't there also something of an issue with Intelligence as a broad concept? A lot of meanings of intelligence are actually dictated by the player rather than the character. Intelligence as an attribute in the game is a more abstract concept and as a result doesn't apply particularly neatly to thieves. \$\endgroup\$ – Jon Hopkins Jan 26 '11 at 16:12

6 is the minimum for all classes except the fighter, which can have 3-5 as well. The Thief needs a 9 or better in dexterity & 6 or better in all other attributes, save for wisdom, which can be as low as 3.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Do you have a page number in the 1E Player's Handbook or DM Guide for reference? \$\endgroup\$ – Stewbob Jun 29 '11 at 21:52
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ This is in fact correct. AD&D PHB page 10, INTELLIGENCE TABLE I, the line for ability score 5 reads: "Here or lower the character can only be a fighter", meaning that any other class (including thief) has an INT 6 minimum requirement. There are similar notes in the other tables, making 6 the typical minimum in all scores to have any choice of class. This is echoed by the thief minimum scores in OSRIC, p. 22. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jun 29 '11 at 22:49

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