I have an Assassin player character in my game now, and it has prompted me to examine this document more closely. I have to say, this is NOT a well-balanced class. I'll be releasing a new version very soon which follows the established Thief advancement rate (as explained on page 153 of the Core Rules r107). Here are some notes on my changes:
Dimirag wrote:Remove Traps can be remove[d]
I will be doing this.
R4 of this supplement gives the Assassin ten distinct percentile abilities; Thieves have just 7. Dropping Remove Traps helps, but still leaves the Assassin more broadly skilled than the Thief.
Shadowing bothers me. Why shouldn't a Thief be able to do this? I propose removing it from the Assassin supplement, and perhaps offering an additional-abilities supplement for both classes.
The original R1 Assassin had thief abilities "two levels lower" than the Thief. The total of the percentile abilities of the R4 Assassin is 215 point; the Thief has 220. Since the Assassin has more non-percentile abilities than the Thief, there should be a greater difference between the two classes. Again, dropping Remove Traps and Shadowing helps here. If we drop one more ability, then both classes would have the same number.
Leading me to my last proposal... drop Disguise. As with Shadowing, it's an ability that not all Assassins necessarily need; also, I feel like having a mechanic for doing this (pretending to be a specific type of character, whether noble or farmer or artisan or whatever) limits the ability of non-Assassin characters to attempt the same thing.
Disguise and Shadowing are both abilities that would work better in a supplement of their own. Optional Thief Abilities, perhaps. In fact, I find myself considering how to create such a supplement right now.
HOKAY DOKAY. So now I've gotten my Assassin down to the following abilities:
15 Open Locks
20 Pick Pockets
20 Move Silently
70 Climb Walls
Seven, just like the Thief. The numbers above are for 1st level; they sum up to 180 points, an average of just 5.7 points less per ability than the Thief. Lowering the Assassin's percentile abilities is meant to balance them against the Thief, and depends on the Assassin's other abilities being superior. I think, given the chance of outright death offered by the Assassinate ability, that this is a fair distribution.
The next step is to create a new Assassin ability table advancing at the same rate as the Thief, so the optional rule mentioned above can be applied to both classes.
... ack, more later.