So you think you have what it takes to be the ultimate thief? Well, being a thief isn’t as easy as it may seem, as it requires a certain amount of knowledge, and ability to understand how to use the environment to your own advantage.
Same goes for master thief Garrett, a veteran with plenty of tools and techniques to have an upper hand no matter where he needs to go. Thief’s game mechanics are largely similar to Dishonored, but unlike it, the emphasis on using your environment to your advantage is much greater.
Thief Ghost Walkthrough
While you could stick a sword in just about every person you came across in Dishonored, Thief encourages players to be, well, a thief. Of course, you can shoot an arrow through anyone’s head if you wish, but the consequences are substantially larger if you’re detected.
Therefore, for most newcomers, it’s important to learn the Stealth basics and advanced techniques involved in Thief. This guide is meant to deliver exactly that.
Darkness My Old Friend
The most intuitive part of being a thief is to stick to the shadows. However, sometimes this seemingly simplistic task itself can be difficult to carry out. Darkness is your best friend, shadows are your shelter, while the light is your worst enemy.
Of course, there won’t always be shadows for you to stroll through. For such instances, it’s important you try to take out the light sources themselves. There are numerous kinds of sources and various ways to do it.
You’ll likely see Candles in most of the residences. Though they’re a small source of light, even the tiniest candle can compromise Garrett’s stealth. For this reason, approach candles quickly and snuff them out.
Flame torches are hung all over the streets, and they have a decent radius of effectiveness. Most of them are inside caged cases, making it nearly impossible for Garrett to extinguish them in close range.
For this reason, you’ll need the valuable Water Arrows.
These arrows have water-filled tips and are ideal for extinguishing torches from a distance. This often causes nearby guards to get curious, approach the torch, and relight it. This should buy Garrett enough time to sneak past them or to even knock them out.
While everyone loved the invention of the light bulb, Garrett wasn’t too please. You can’t use arrows on them, and you certainly can’t snuff them out. So what can you do? Well, press the switch! Guards will get curious if the light is turned off, and will often come to check and turn it on again.
Sometimes switches aren’t located in areas that are easily accessible. For this, you can use blunt arrows and take aim at the switch. However, this makes considerably more noise, and can often make nearby guards suspicious.
So you’ve managed to snuff every candle and extinguish every torch there is.
Good for you! It won’t help much if you move about in the streets while doing a tap dance. Staying quiet through careful movement is another essentiality. Once again, there are plenty of ways to do this.
Crouching and Sneaking
Fortunately, Garrett is pretty quiet when he’s not running or walking normally. Crouching is the most basic stealth-based technique in any and every game. When you crouch, your stature becomes low, making it harder for most to spot you.
But it doesn’t mean you can just crouch in front of a guard and expect him not to see you. Crouching is truly complemented when you move, greatly muffling your footsteps, allowing you to sneak here and there without making much noise at all. This is something you should be doing almost all the time; make it a habit.
Whether you’re sneaking or walking plain, Garrett can do a quick slide on the ground to reach his destination. This little maneuver is excellent when you have to move from cover to cover or get out of illuminated places. You’ll appear as nothing more than a shadowy blur to guards, make them a bit curious, but never truly blowing your cover.
Leaning and Peaking
A true thief anticipates danger all the time, and scans his/her environment carefully. Garrett is no exception, to say the least. When you get close to the edge of the wall or crate, you can peak slightly to check out what is ahead. Though it might sound like a risky thing to do all the time, it’s not; Garrett’s head is covered and doesn’t get noticed at all by guards.
You can further lean from the edge if you wish, and if there is a nearby crate or another wall on the adjacent side, you can quickly dash to it without alerting any guard.
Watch Your Step
So you know how to extinguish light sources, you know how to walk carefully, and you believe you’re the ultimate stealth boy. Well, you’re quite wrong, because there are still a few things to consider. Thief wants you to know that awareness of the environment is an essential factor.
While carpets and stones won’t produce much knows when you walk on them, the creaking sound of wooden floors and the rippling noise of water is something you definitely need to worry about. Most of the residences have wooden floors, which you have to be very careful of.
Avoid these areas if there are guards nearby, or they’ll hear and get suspicious. Observe the terrain carefully before moving, and only cross the riskier portions when absolutely necessary.
Sounds made on wood can still be reduced by sneaking, but when you’re walking on broken glass you’re inviting guards to poke you with a sword. There are almost always alternate routes you can take to avoid glass. When you absolutely must cross, move like a snail to suppress the noise as much as possible.
Birds and Caged Dogs
Yep, you read right – there are often caged birds and dogs that will get alerted from your presence.
Birds in cages are pretty quiet, but if you make sudden moves, bump into their cages, or make too much noise, they will start to stir. This will alert guards nearby and they will come running to inspect.
Dogs on the other hand are even more of an annoyance. If they spot Garrett even from a distance, they’ll begin to growl loudly. If you don’t move away quickly and quietly, they will starting barking, making everyone nearby alerted. Keep your distance from caged dogs.
If there’s no alternate way, you might have to be stone hearted and put an arrow through the pooch. However, their owners can notice the carcasses and become alerted.
Note that being fully detected from Birds and Dogs counts for the “Remain Undetected” thieving challenges.
You’ll often come across fragile objects like wineglasses and bottles. Being clumsy and carelessly bumping into one will result in the shattering, making a loud enough noise to alert guards in the vicinity. These objects can actually be used as good distractions, if you choose to pick them up and throw them to lure guards away.
If you’re leaving doors open in a building, you should know this isn’t your mother’s house, and you’re a thief. Doors you have opened that were previously closed will alert guards, and they’ll often come to check the room you may have entered. Make sure you don’t make this mistake.
Offensive Stealth Tactics
So now you’ve covered mostly everything there is to know to keep yourself undetected. However, sometimes there is no choice but to go on the offensive. Sometimes it’s just much more fun to mix it up between offensive stealth and simple avoidance – admit it, it makes you feel like a ninja.
Sometimes some folks just need a good nap. For such reasons, there are Stealth Takedowns. You can just do a nice sweep of Garrett’s blackjack to knockout enemies for the rest of the mission. Stealth takedowns increase your chances of earning the Opportunist Playstyle.
These takedowns are so rewarding, and much less forgiving for the opponents than stealth takedowns. When you are above a guard by a considerable height, you can simply jump down on him to perform a quick, clean kill. These finishing moves increase your chances of earning the Predator Playstyle.
Typical of most videogame enemies, guards in Thief tend to move about red barrels, and any modern gamer would know what that means. You can simply shoot an arrow into the barrel and watch the show.
Though explosive barrels have a large blast radius, it’s best to ignite one when a guard is fairly close to ensure a fatality. And yes, the blast noise will alert other guards, so use it on isolated enemies only, unless you want some adrenaline-pumping action.
Flammable Liquids can be lit up by using the Fire Arrows. Simply aim for the leaking liquid next to the barrel and wait for a guard to foolishly step on it. Release your flaming arrow and watch as the poor fellow burns to a crisp.
These objects are quite rare in the game, but when you spot one, your eyes will probably light up, provided you know what they do. Shooting a blunt arrow at loose pressure valves on a pipe will release one kind of fluid: either flame of gas. Flames will kill enemies in the vicinity, while gases will knock them unconscious.
You’ll often see crates suspended from hinges up above. These are perfect traps to crush enemies that may unfortunately be under them. Use your Focus ability to identify the hinge location, then shoot a blunt arrow to release it. It’ll be raining heavy crates on the poor fellow underneath, killing him instantly.
Well, you’ve just used all the above things, and you fear there’s a distant guard who somehow hasn’t heard all the explosions and the falling crates. Well, he still has all these bodies to spot, and he’ll start performing a thorough search. Hiding bodies in shadows and other places is thus an important part of staying undetected, and it makes everything look clean and professional.
Great, even though you’ve learned everything there is to learn about maintaining stealth, you’ve been detected.
Fortunately for you, it’s not the end of the world. Escaping detection is a part of a thief’s skill, so you should know it just as well as the above tricks, or maybe even better.
You can either choose to stay and fight or flee and make yourself disappear again. The latter is a much better option, since fighting 10 guards at once can be a daunting task at times.
Hiding in Cabinets
Cabinets are very useful retreating areas, particularly in residences.
If you have made a guard suspicious or simply have no means of escape, hiding in the cabinet is the best option, if there is one. In addition to preventing you from being spotted, cabinets also save your progress.
You can then choose to either quietly get out or barge the cabinet doors. The latter is useful if a guard comes near the cabinet and you want to take him out. Make sure you yell “surprise matha-fu***!” when you attempt this.
It’s highly unlikely that you’ll come across a cabinet in the open street. For such situations, look for higher ground. Guards aren’t as agile as you, so you can easily climb up ladders and crate to hide yourself somewhere beyond their sight. It also gives you a nice height advantage to perform aerial takedowns.
Vents and Crawl Spaces
Crawl spaces are excellent hiding spots if you’ve been spotted, as guards don’t seem to search them. However, if a crawl space is vented, it can only be unscrewed when you are undetected. Thus, to ensure you have a backup hiding spot, always unscrew vents when you are undetected in case things go bad.
Don’t forget to share your own tips and tactics by commenting below!