General Notes on Skills

Complex Skills (Unearthed Arcana p.81)

Skills most commonly subject to the complex skill check, are: Open Lock and skills which are done over time such as Jump, Balance, Diplomacy, Knowledge, Hide, and Move Silently.

Gather Information

May only be used to ask around the city for general rumors. When a player makes a gather information check they are effectively wandering around town, talking to passer-bys, ease-dropping on conversations, Noticing the Cant on walls, and trading secrets and rumors with all those they meet. This process is not about seeking the answer to a particular question, it’s about the latest news.

Tailing Someone (Song and Silence p.36)

This is not a new skill, but rather a way of using Hide to follow someone unseen. Note, penalties for moving at full speed still apply to the check, as does you base speed. Staying 60ft. requires a hide check versus a spot check every 10 minutes. If there are not enough hiding spots to move to while tailing someone (such as moving down an empty street) you must be able to at least move between cover that is 1ft per point in your hide bonus (i.e. +5 is 5ft.) If you cannot do such, you fail automatically to tail the person and are either spotted or the thing being tailed gets away. If one fails a hide check, one can make a Bluff check versus the person being tails sense motive. The following modifiers apply to that check:

Your Quarry … Modifier
Is sure nobody is following -5
Has no reason to suspect anybody is following +0
Is worried about being followed +10
Is worried about being followed an knows you’re an enemy +20

Tougher Tumble Checks (Song and Silence p.37)

Use the following table for tumble in various difficult circumstances:

Circumstance Penalty
Bad lighting (torches, lanterns, etc.) -2
Dusty or uneven floors -2
Light debris (pebbles or trash) -2
Wet floor -4
Crumbling floor -4
Moderate debris (strewn across floor) -4
Tumble begins or ends in darkness -4
Unworked stone/natural cavern -6
Standing water/deep puddles -6
Heavy debris (trash pit, for example) -6
Pitch black -6

Opposed Tumble Checks (Song and Silence p.38)

In order to pass past an opponent in combat without an attack of opportunity, one makes a tumble check. The opponent then makes a reflex save DC the tumble check. If the attacker is passing through the defender’s square add +10 to the save. Failed tumble checks generate attacks of opportunity as normal.

Concealing a Weapon (Song and Silence p.37)

One can use the sleight of hand skill to hide a weapon on your person. Casual observers make spot checks versus the check or search check if being frisked. If being frisked the searcher gains a +4 to their check. Use the table located here for more modifiers.

Thieves’ Cant, Silent Cant, and the Drow Silent Language

All Rogue Variants, Fighter(Thug), and Humaniods from Fogdown may take Thieves’ Cant as a language. There are three forms of Thieves’ Cant.
  • Written: Typically found on the walls of alleys and abandon buildings, written Thieves’ Cant is a complex series of distorted letters, images and symbols which convey anything from simple statement (“Nym was here!”) to complex metaphors (“Jonny if I don’t get my gilt I’m going to gut you like a pig!”).
  • Spoken: Spoken Thieves’ Cant is a mixture of the worse slang and idioms of the languages of Faerun. Begun by sailors as a means of insulting one another, once it came to Fogdown, it became an entire language of its own. Spoken Cant can convey anything an other language can, but just a bit more “illustratively.” Players who’s characters have Thieves’ Cant (Spoken) do not need actually use Cant while speaking in game, but if they choose to, here is a nice reference.
  • Silent: Derived from the Drow Silent Language, Thieves’ Cant (Silent) is a series of hand gestures which can be used to communicate with any one sees it. It is apple to express all manners of tatics, words, and statements (“Get the guard on the left and I’ll get the one on the right”). Players with the Drow Silent Language should roleplay an ability to understand Thieves’ Cant (Silent), but as if an American English speaker was trying to understand a British English speaker, talking strictly in slang words. (“Eh, let’s go do a little run a round with that bird!”)


Add a +2 circumstance bonus to skills which the book has pertinent information about, in non-combat situations.


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