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Rogues Gallery: 7 D&D heists for a Thieves Guild Campaign

Updated: Jun 26

Table of Contents


The Ornate Ewer Heist

The Bank Robbery

The Artful Forger

The Smuggler's Bane

The Ransom Demand

The Corrupt Guards

The Manor House Burglary


Bonus Essay: Ten Tips for Writing the Perfect D&D Heist

Introduction - Rogues Gallery: 7 D&D heists for a Thieves Guild Campaign

Ever wanted to run a d&d heists campaign for your players but struggled coming up with enough content to fill a full campaign arc? We've got you covered. In this article, you'll find 10 fleshed-out encounters, NPCs, and adventure hooks perfect for a thieves' guild campaign. Whether you're looking to plan an intricate heist, shake down some local businesses for protection money, or uncover a traitor in your midst, you'll find plenty of inspiration here to keep your rogues busy for many game nights to come.

Whether your group is planning the ultimate theft from the city's most fortified vault, or a simple pickpocket job in a bustling marketplace, running a heist campaign in Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) can bring your storytelling to new, thrilling heights. This form of play adds an additional layer of intrigue and suspense that can keep your players on their toes, engaged, and constantly scheming.

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of our 10 ready-to-use encounters, here are three key hints to ensure that your D&D heist adventures are packed with fun, excitement, and suspense:

  1. Diversify your Obstacles: Every great heist needs some compelling hurdles to overcome. These obstacles should not be limited to physical barriers or security measures. Introduce complex social dynamics, magical challenges, or even inner conflict within the party to add layers of depth to your heist. The success of the operation should rely on more than just a series of dice rolls, instead promoting innovative problem solving, planning, and cooperation amongst your players.

  2. No Plan Survives Contact with Reality: The thrill of a heist lies in the unpredictability. As a DM, don't be afraid to throw curveballs that disrupt the party's plans, keeping them reactive and adaptive. The occasional twist or unexpected complication can bring suspense, excitement, and fun to the campaign. This could be an unplanned guard change, a sudden alarm, or even a rival thieves' guild showing up unannounced.

  3. Every Action Has a Consequence: The choices your players make should influence the narrative and future encounters. If the heist is flawlessly executed, perhaps they've made a powerful enemy who will stop at nothing to retrieve their stolen treasure. If the heist goes poorly, they may attract the attention of the local law enforcement or even disgruntled allies.

Stay tuned as we delve into our detailed encounters, NPCs, and adventure hooks. You'll find a wealth of ideas to craft a gripping, engaging, and exciting thieves' guild campaign. Remember, the best D&D adventures are built on collaboration, creativity, and a dash of chaos. Let's set the stage for your grand heist!

The Ornate Ewer Heist - Steal an Priceless Artefact From the City's Museum to Sell on the Black Market.

This heist will require stealth, cunning, and a crew with diverse skills. The ornate ewer you're after is a priceless relic on display in the city museum's Hall of Antiquities. Getting past their security systems and guards won't be easy, but the payoff will make it worth the risk.

Each of your players will step into the shoes of a distinct member of the crew: the nimble-fingered thief born from aristocracy and disgrace; the charming rogue, a bard hiding a web of secrets; the brute, a formidable warrior seeking redemption; and the shrewd fence, a cunning merchant entangled in dangerous debts. Their paths are unique, their motives disparate, but their objective unites them.

The stage is set within the city museum, a veritable fortress brimming with magical safeguards, creature guardians, and vigilant guards. The path to the ewer is fraught with danger, and time is as formidable an adversary as any. Observation and timing are your players' best weapons. Encourage them to study the museum's patterns and seize the perfect moment for their daring strike.

However, this adventure is anything but ordinary. A rival gang, the dreaded Crimson Vipers, has their eyes on the same prize. This twist not only adds an extra layer of suspense but also ensures that your players must be ready to adapt on the fly, highlighting the dynamic and unpredictable nature of a good heist.

Once your crew manages to pilfer the ewer, the race against time truly begins. Skilful negotiation, brute strength, and quick thinking will play critical roles as they strive to make their daring escape, all while protecting their precious loot.

The aftermath will shake the city, keeping your players on their toes even after the adventure ends. From high-alert city guards to vengeful rival thieves, consequences will follow their actions, offering an array of exciting plot hooks for future adventures. Encourage your crew to celebrate their victory but also remind them to remain vigilant.

But, above all, ensure the adventure is fun and engaging for your players. Allow them the freedom to strategize, to navigate the challenges as they see fit, and to truly immerse themselves in their roles. Remember, a successful heist is not just about obtaining the prize but also about the thrill of the chase and the bonds forged along the way.

So gather your crew, lay out your plans, and step into the shadows. An unforgettable night of adventure awaits your daring band of rogues. Good luck, Dungeon Master, and may fortune favour the bold!

Vyktor Bloodmane, Leader of the Crimson Vipers

Medium humanoid (human), neutral evil

Armor Class 16 (studded leather armor)

Hit Points 75 (10d8 + 30)

Speed 30 ft.

Strength 12 (+1)

Dexterity 18 (+4)

Constitution 16 (+3)

Intelligence 14 (+2)

Wisdom 12 (+1)

Charisma16 (+3)

Saving Throws Dex +8, Int +6

Skills Acrobatics +8, Deception +7, Perception +5, Stealth +8

Senses Passive Perception 15

Languages Common, Thieves' Cant

Challenge 8 (3,900 XP)

Sneak Attack (1/Turn). Vyktora Bloodmane deals an extra 14 (4d6) damage when she hits a target with a weapon attack and has advantage on the attack roll, or when the target is within 5 feet of an ally of Vyktora Bloodmane that isn't incapacitated and Viper doesn't have disadvantage on the attack roll.

Cunning Action. On each of her turns, Vyktora Bloodmane can use a bonus action to take the Dash, Disengage, or Hide action.

Evasion. If Viper is subjected to an effect that allows her to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, she instead takes no damage if she succeeds on the saving throw, and only half damage if she fails.

Leader's Inspiration. Vyktora Bloodmane can use a bonus action to inspire her allies. Up to three allies within 30 feet of her gain advantage on their next attack roll or saving throw.

Multiattack. Vyktora Bloodmane makes two attacks with her shortswords.

Shortsword. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) piercing damage.

This is a general stat block for a skilled, experienced, and dangerous rogue-type character. You can modify these stats to suit the level and abilities of your player characters, and to fit the unique elements of your campaign. Remember, this is your game - feel free to adjust things to make them work for you!

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The Bank Robbery - When the heist backfires.

As the overseer of this thrilling escapade, it's up to you to build a world ripe with opportunity and danger. The bank, an impregnable fortress adorned with intricate security measures, houses more than just gold and jewels. In its deepest chamber, a vault veiled in mystery, lies a potent magic artifact. This artifact, when used correctly, opens a portal to another location in the city - the perfect escape route.

However, it's not that simple. This artefact is encased in a puzzle-lock box, a test designed by the bank's arcane engineers to deter potential thieves. As your players navigate the bank's security, they'll also need to decipher cryptic clues hidden throughout the bank to unlock the artifact. Consider these clues an added layer of intrigue and challenge for your players, a cerebral diversion amidst a thrilling heist.

To add an extra element of suspense, the bank vault is guarded by magical guardians, powerful constructs programmed to protect the bank's treasures at all costs. These guardians, each with unique abilities and strategies, are formidable foes, and your players will need to work together to overcome them.

Just when your players might think they've got everything under control, throw in the ultimate plot twist: betrayal. Perhaps an insider, an ally they trusted, sells them out, alerting the city guard and effectively surrounding the bank. With no way out, their only hope of escape lies with the artifact.

This element of treachery adds a depth of emotion and conflict to your game. It highlights that even in a world of magic and monsters, human (or humanoid) nature can often be the most unpredictable adversary.

As the heist concludes, your players, hopefully rich in loot and experience, should have a newfound respect for the complexity of the city's underground and the treacherous path of a thief. With their newfound wealth and notoriety, they've just begun to explore the web of intrigue and adventure that awaits them.

Arcane Warden

Large construct, unaligned

Armor Class 16 (natural armor)

Hit Points 90 (12d10 + 24)

Speed 30 ft.

Strength 16 (+3)

Dexterity 14 (+2)

Constitution 14 (+2)

Intelligence 6 (-2)

Wisdom 11 (+0)

Charisma 1 (-5)

Damage Immunities poison, psychic

Condition Immunities charmed, exhaustion, frightened, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned

Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10

Languages understands the languages of its creator but can't speak

Challenge 5 (1,800 XP)

Immutable Form. The warden is immune to any spell or effect that would alter its form.

Magic Resistance. The warden has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Spellcasting. The warden is a 5th-level spellcaster. Its spellcasting ability is Intelligence (spell save DC 10). The warden has the following wizard spells prepared:

  • Cantrips (at will): mage hand, ray of frost

  • 1st level (4 slots): detect magic, magic missile, shield

  • 2nd level (3 slots): arcane lock, misty step

  • 3rd level (2 slots): counterspell, dispel magic

Multiattack. The warden makes two melee attacks.

Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 3) bludgeoning damage.

These constructs would be a formidable challenge for a heist crew, as they are designed to defend the bank against intruders. The Arcane Warden's spells allow it to provide substantial control and protection over the bank's vault, forcing the players to strategize how to bypass or disable these constructs. Remember, the stats can be adjusted based on the party's level and number of members to ensure an exciting and balanced encounter.

The Artful Forger - Help a Master Forger Create Copies of Rare Artwork to Sell to Unsuspecting Nobles.

The Artful Forger

In this encounter, your players will aid the half-elf master forger, Varrus, a cunning and enigmatic character with a talent for replicating renowned artworks to dupe the city's elite. But remember, Varrus is as skilled at deceit as he is at forgery, and your players must tread carefully as they navigate this artful adventure.

Varrus's operation requires stealth and finesse, traits he admires and rewards in his helpers. However, beneath his charming façade, Varrus is a slippery character, always plotting his own safety above all else. Always one step ahead, Varrus isn't above betraying his associates to save his own skin, should his plan go awry. After all, in the high-stakes game of forgery, there is no room for loyalty.

As your players aid Varrus, they'll embark on a quest to gather rare pigments and fine canvases. The procurement of these unique materials, like crushed lapis lazuli, cinnabar, and malachite, presents an exciting challenge. From dodging protective enchantments in artisanal shops to negotiating with volatile miners, the risks in obtaining these materials add an element of excitement to the adventure.

Next, your players must scout extravagant manor houses and formidable castles, meticulously studying security patterns and noting ideal times for the high-risk swap. The replacement of original artworks with impeccable forgeries must go unnoticed, adding a thrilling stealth element to the encounter.

The climax of this encounter comes when the forgeries are ready, and it's time for the audacious swap. This phase requires careful coordination, exceptional stealth, and, potentially, a dose of smooth talking. As your players orchestrate the switch and sell the original artwork on the black market, they might find themselves locked in a high-stakes negotiation or evading angry nobles.

Ultimately, they must decide their level of involvement in this treacherous operation. Will they fully engage in the enterprise, or will they try to outwit the deceptive Varrus? Can they manage the mounting risks and potential repercussions of their actions? Whatever they choose, one thing is for sure: this encounter is not just a challenge of skills, but a test of morals and quick decision-making.

This encounter, filled with deception, strategy, and peril, will provide an unforgettable experience for your players. It promises the allure of high rewards, but with the very real threat of dire consequences.

Varrus, the Master Forger Medium humanoid (half-elf), neutral Armor Class: 15 (leather armor) Hit Points: 45 (10d8) Speed: 30 ft. Strength: 10 (+0) Dexterity: 16 (+3) Constitution: 12 (+1) Intelligence: 14 (+2) Wisdom: 12 (+1) Charisma: 16 (+3) Skills: Deception +6, Sleight of Hand +6, Investigation +5, Perception +4, Stealth +6 Senses: darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 14 Languages: Common, Elvish, Thieves' Cant Challenge: 3 (700 XP) Cunning Action: On each of his turns, Varrus can use a bonus action to take the Dash, Disengage, or Hide action. Deceptive: Varrus has advantage on Deception and Sleight of Hand checks. Forgery Expert: Varrus has advantage on any ability check made to create a forgery or to identify a forgery. Spellcasting: Varrus is a 4th-level spellcaster. His spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 14, +6 to hit with spell attacks). He has the following Bard spells prepared:

  • Cantrips (at will): Friends, Message

  • 1st level (4 slots): Charm Person, Disguise Self, Silent Image

  • 2nd level (3 slots): Suggestion, Invisibility

Actions Dagger: Melee or Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 20/60 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d4 + 3) piercing damage. As before, you can adjust these stats to better fit the level and makeup of your party. This version of Varrus is designed to be a challenging and elusive character who uses his cunning and charm to escape precarious situations and his forgery skills to facilitate the artful heist.

The Smuggler's Bane - Hijack a Shipment of Illegal Goods to Sell for a Profit, but Beware the Smugglers' Retribution!

A Smuggler's Ambush

As the twilight draws near, whispers of a lucrative opportunity waft through the clandestine corridors of your thieves' guild. An illicit shipment, rich with dwarven spirits and precious elven artefacts, is expected to grace the city's docks under the cloak of darkness. The smugglers, expecting an uneventful night of illegal commerce, plan to trade these forbidden treasures with shadowy dealers, accruing hefty profits from their risky endeavor. However, your guild has a different plan: hijack the cargo, sabotage the smuggler's aspirations, and monopolize the gold from the lucrative sale of these high-demand items. One thing is certain; this audacious heist is bound to attract the ire of the thwarted smugglers, potentially sparking a violent feud.

Devising the Ambush

The intricate operation hinges on several vital pieces of information: the precise timing of the shipment's arrival, the designated dock, and the logistics of the smugglers' operation. Beyond gathering intelligence, your team needs a robust plan for intercepting the shipment, neutralizing the smugglers, and successfully transporting the valuable goods back to the guild. Several strategies might emerge:

  • Coercing or bribing the dock workers, wringing out the clandestine details of the smuggler's plan.

  • Masquerading as city guards, intervening under the guise of official duty as the smugglers unload their contraband.

  • Tracking the smugglers to their storage location, strategically striking once they depart, leaving the goods unprotected.

  • Collaborating with a pirate crew, orchestrating an ambush at sea and rerouting the cargo to a clandestine cove.

Regardless of the chosen strategy, anticipate ferocious resistance from the seasoned smugglers and their hired mercenaries. Arriving well-armed, and preferably with reinforcements, is advisable if the situation degenerates to violence. Speed is paramount to evade the ever-watchful city watch and potential reinforcements.

Counting the Gains and Consequences

In the optimistic scenario of a successful heist, the booty, once sold to discerning buyers, could swell the guild's coffers by several thousand gold pieces. However, such a grand operation is bound to leave a trail of wrath in its wake. The smugglers, bruised in their pride and pockets, are likely to harbour a deep thirst for retribution. Prepare for counterattacks in the ensuing weeks, or even months. Their tactics could range from directly assaulting guild members, to undermining your operations, or worse, snitching about your illegal operations to the city authorities. Your key to survival will be constant vigilance, and perhaps a plan B.

This thrilling operation is not just an adrenaline-filled mission for your team of thieves, but it also unravels a fresh, persistent adversary in the guise of the spurned smugglers. Will your party be able to bask in the victory spoils while dodging the furious storms whipped up by the Smuggler's Bane? The trials ahead assure a tense, intriguing storyline for your guild campaign, testing the mettle of your team and their proficiency at living on the edge.

Smuggler Captain - CR 7

Medium Humanoid, any alignment

Armor Class: 16 (studded leather) Hit Points: 85 (10d8 + 40) Speed: 30 ft.

STR: 15 (+2)

DEX: 18 (+4)

CON: 14 (+2)

INT: 13 (+1)

WIS: 12 (+1)

CHA: 16 (+3)

Saving Throws: Dex +7, Con +5 Skills: Deception +6, Perception +4, Stealth +7 Senses: Passive Perception 14 Languages: Any two languages Challenge: 7 (2,900 XP)

Evasion. If the smuggler captain is subjected to an effect that allows it to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, the captain instead takes no damage if it succeeds on the saving throw, and only half damage if it fails.

Sneak Attack (1/Turn). The smuggler captain deals an extra 14 (4d6) damage when it hits a target with a weapon attack and has advantage on the attack roll, or when the target is within 5 feet of an ally of the captain that isn't incapacitated and the captain doesn't have disadvantage on the attack roll.

ActionsMultiattack. The smuggler captain makes two melee attacks.

Scimitar. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) slashing damage.

Hand Crossbow. Ranged Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, range 30/120 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) piercing damage.

The smuggler captain is a cunning and battle-hardened leader who commands his crew with a mix of respect and fear. He is adept at using the shadows to his advantage, quickly disappearing and reappearing to launch surprise attacks. He has extensive experience in the smuggling trade, giving him the knowledge and connections necessary to move illicit goods efficiently and discreetly. However, he's not above using brute force when necessary, making him a dangerous adversary for anyone who stands in his way.

The Ransom Demand - Kidnap a Wealthy Merchant's Son and Hold Him for Ransom.

A Game of Deception

In this complex and multilayered encounter, your adventurers find themselves in a moral quandary as they navigate a world of crime, power, and wealth. A mysterious figure, Theodore Rosset, the chief of security for the influential gemstone merchant Seraphine Brightwell, secretly commissions your thieves’ guild.

His task: to infiltrate a notorious kidnapping gang planning to abduct Seraphine's young son, Elias Brightwell. The job is risky, yet promises a hefty reward.

Firstly, your group must convincingly integrate with the gang. They'll have to earn their trust, potentially partaking in lesser criminal activities as proof of their intent. Over time, they must learn the details of the gang's plot to abduct Elias.

Once the gang puts their plan into motion, your adventurers must strike a careful balance. They need to play their part in the kidnapping while ensuring Elias’s safety and comfort. Elias should be moved to the planned hideout, likely a rundown building or a concealed location in the city’s vast sewer network.

At this point, a series of anonymous messages should be sent to Theodore, discreetly revealing Elias’s whereabouts. All the while, your group needs to maintain their cover, keeping the gang’s suspicions at bay. Your adventurers may also need to use their wits and skills to prevent the gang from moving Elias, perhaps by creating distractions or leading members on wild goose chases.

Upon receiving the message, Theodore, along with a discreet team, should rescue Elias, taking care to leave no trace of their intervention. If the guild has done their job well, the gang will be none the wiser about their mole operation, allowing the guild to remain embedded within their ranks for future missions.

Simultaneously, to add depth to the encounter, have Seraphine display the strength and resolve of a mother fearing for her child. As well as Elias, who might not be as helpless as he seems, potentially displaying surprising abilities that can cause unexpected challenges or even assist in his safe return.

This encounter provides ample opportunities for roleplaying, deception, and navigating the morally complex dynamics of the city's underworld. Your adventurers will need to carefully manage their double-agent status, ensuring the safety of Elias while preserving their undercover position within the gang. This promises to be a suspense-filled chapter of your campaign.

Theodore Rosset Class: Fighter (Battlemaster) Race: Human


  • Strength: 16

  • Dexterity: 14

  • Constitution: 14

  • Intelligence: 12

  • Wisdom: 12

  • Charisma: 10

Skills: Insight, Perception, Persuasion, and Investigation. Feats: Alert, Tactical Leader. Equipment: Plate armor, a longsword, and a heavy crossbow.

As the chief of security for Seraphine Brightwell, Theodore Rosset is a strategic mastermind with years of experience in security and military tactics. He commands a team of skilled guards and is highly trained in both melee combat and long-range weapons. Despite his gruff exterior, Theodore is fiercely loyal to those he protects.

Seraphine Brightwell Class: Noble (Custom Background) Race: Elf (High)


  • Strength: 8

  • Dexterity: 10

  • Constitution: 10

  • Intelligence: 14

  • Wisdom: 12

  • Charisma: 16

Skills: Persuasion, Insight, History, and Deception. Feats: Keen Mind, Observant. Equipment: Fine clothing, signet ring, a scroll of pedigree, and a purse containing 25gp.

Seraphine Brightwell, a successful gemstone merchant, is known for her keen business acumen, wit, and charm. Her high intelligence and charisma make her a force to be reckoned with in both trade negotiations and social circles. While not a combatant, Seraphine possesses a sharp mind and is often one step ahead of her adversaries. Her most important priority is the safety and wellbeing of her son Elias, for whom she'd go to any lengths.

Remember, these are suggested stats and can be adjusted according to your campaign's difficulty level and to suit your party's composition.

The Corrupt Guards - Bribe Some City Guards to Look the Other Way During a Major Heist.

Encounter: "A Fair Trade?"

Your team's task is no small one: executing a daring heist under the watchful eyes of the city guard. An encounter with a ruthless captain of the city guard and his dutiful lieutenants might provide an unexpected opportunity. They could be persuaded, with the persuasive jingle of gold coins, to turn a blind eye to your activities for a night.

The City Guard Captain - Eldon "Hardhand" Roth

A grizzled veteran, Roth is known for his ironclad integrity and disciplined troops. But everyone has a price. Approach Roth and offer a hefty sum of 500-1000 gold pieces. Be subtle, cloak your proposition as a "donation" for the guard's welfare fund from an anonymous benefactor. If Roth bristles at this, remind him of the potential benefits - equipment upgrades for his men, a better life for his family. But beware, the proposition must be presented delicately; Roth is no fool and overt bribery attempts could end with your arrest.

The Lieutenants - Ander Longfoot and Kadia Feathercloak

Roth's right hands, Longfoot and Feathercloak, are ambitious and somewhat more susceptible to financial persuasion. With a lighter purse, between 200-500 gold pieces, you may convince them to redirect their patrols on the night of your operation. Drop hints of future financial prospects from the same "benefactor" to sweeten the deal.

The Rank-and-File Guards

If the leadership is too stiff-necked, focus on the less stalwart, lower-ranking guards. A purse of 50-200 gold pieces may be enough to convince them to take a long lunch or patrol the opposite side of town. Rotate the guards you bribe to avoid creating a suspicious pattern.

Plausible Excuses

If other guards start asking questions, provide believable explanations. Perhaps a wealthy noble is throwing a grand party, requiring an increased presence near his estate. Or, there could be a rumoured plague outbreak in the slums, needing quarantine enforcement.

Backup Plans

Despite your efforts, remember: Not all bought men stay bought. Some might see the potential for greater gain in your downfall, either through blackmail or by selling you out to your enemies. As always, have a contingency plan to deal with treacherous guards or unexpected interventions.

This encounter demands careful role-playing, stealth, and strategic planning. Through it, your players will not only understand the nuances of city corruption but will also experience the thrill and danger of manipulating power structures to their advantage.

Eldon "Hardhand" Roth

Class: Fighter (Battlemaster)

Level 10 Alignment:

Lawful Neutral

Armor Class: 18 (plate armor)

Hit Points: 84 (10d10+30)

Strength: 16 (+3)

Dexterity: 12 (+1)

Constitution: 16 (+3)

Intelligence: 10 (+0)

Wisdom: 14 (+2)

Charisma: 12 (+1)

Skills: Athletics +6, Insight +5, Intimidation +4, Perception +5

Equipment: Longsword, heavy crossbow, plate armour

Ander Longfoot

Class: Fighter (Champion)

Level 8

Alignment: Chaotic Good

Armor Class: 16 (chain mail)

Hit Points: 68 (8d10+24)

Strength: 15 (+2)

Dexterity: 13 (+1)

Constitution: 16 (+3)

Intelligence: 9 (-1)

Wisdom: 11 (+0)

Charisma: 14 (+2)

Skills: Perception +3, Persuasion +5

Equipment: Halberd, light crossbow, chain mail

Kadia Feathercloak

Class: Rogue (Thief)

Level 7

Alignment: Neutral Good

Armor Class: 15 (studded leather armor)

Hit Points: 46 (7d8+14)

Strength: 10 (+0)

Dexterity: 17 (+3)

Constitution: 14 (+2)

Intelligence: 12 (+1)

Wisdom: 13 (+1)

Charisma: 15 (+2)

Skills: Acrobatics +6, Deception +5, Stealth +6, Sleight of Hand +6

Equipment: Shortsword, dagger, shortbow, studded leather armour

The Manor House Burglary - Break Into a Lavish Estate to Steal Valuables When the Owners Are Away.

Casing the Joint

The manor house you’ve been tasked to burgle is the lavish estate of a wealthy merchant family, the Lockharts. They’ve gone on an extended summer holiday, leaving their home unattended—the perfect opportunity for your thieving crew.

Before attempting to break in, you’ll want to scope out the manor to determine possible entrances and exits, guard patrols, any traps or alarms, and the locations of valuables. The estate is surrounded by high stone walls, with iron gates at the front. There are guards at the gates, but they seem lax in their duties.

  • The grounds include sprawling gardens, stables, and a hedge maze, providing cover for stealthy approach.

  • There are balconies, terraces and large windows on the upper floors that may be unlocked or have weak locks to pick.

  • The vault in the study likely contains gold, jewels and important documents.

  • Servants’ passages, trapdoors or tunnels could lead into the wine cellar, kitchen, or attic.

Executing the Heist

The Lockhart family is known throughout the city for their opulence and collection of exotic and rare artifacts. They're also known for their unforgiving stance on thieves, making their manor a daunting target. Rumor has it that a powerful artifact, the "Eye of the Moon", is hidden somewhere within their manor.

The Unexpected Guest

Unbeknownst to you and your crew, the Lockharts' mischievous nephew, Finnan, has been left behind to look after the house. A troublemaker at heart and fascinated by the stories of notorious thieves, Finnan might prove to be a wild card in your plans. If discovered, he could turn into an unexpected ally or a liability, depending on how your crew handles the situation.

The Guard Captain and his Trusty Dog

Captain Eustace, an ex-adventurer, leads the manor guards. A skilled combatant, he has an uncanny knack for spotting suspicious activity. His loyal mastiff, Bouncer, has a keen sense of smell and can track intruders with deadly accuracy. Bypassing them unnoticed will require utmost stealth and cunning.

The Hidden Vault and the Magical Labyrinth

Hidden behind the lavish paintings and bookcases of the study is a secret vault. It is protected by a magical lock that can only be opened by solving a complex riddle. Adding another layer of security, the vault is surrounded by a magical labyrinth, which shifts and changes its layout at random intervals.

A Twist in the Tale

The Eye of the Moon is rumored to be kept in a hidden chamber within the vault. However, once you manage to navigate the labyrinth and solve the riddle, you find out that the Eye of the Moon has been stolen already, leaving behind a taunting note from a rival thieves' guild.

The Aftermath

Stealing from the Lockharts' manor while they're away proves to be a bigger challenge than initially thought. Successfully infiltrating the manor and discovering the already-stolen artifact will not only strengthen your reputation but will also spur a new rivalry and potential future encounters with the rival thieves' guild. It will also keep the city guard on high alert, adding another layer of challenge to future heists.

NPC/Encounter Stats

Finnan Lockhart

Race: Human

Class: Rogue (Level 3) Attributes

  • Strength: 8 (-1)

  • Dexterity: 16 (+3)

  • Constitution: 12 (+1)

  • Intelligence: 10 (+0)

  • Wisdom: 14 (+2)

  • Charisma: 13 (+1)

Skills: Acrobatics +5, Deception +3, Perception +4, Stealth +5 Sneak Attack: 2d6. Finnan deals an extra 2d6 damage when he hits a target with a finesse or ranged weapon and has advantage on the attack roll, or when another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it and isn't incapacitated. Cunning Action: Finnan can use a bonus action to Dash, Disengage, or Hide. Pranks:

  1. Oil Slick: Finnan pours a vial of oil on the floor at the top of a staircase or in a hallway, forcing anyone running to make a Dexterity saving throw (DC 15) or fall prone.

  2. Bucket Drop: Finnan sets up a bucket filled with paint or glue to fall when a door is opened. The person opening the door must make a Dexterity saving throw (DC 15) or be blinded until they can clean themselves off.

  3. Marbles Scatter: Finnan scatters marbles on the floor, turning it into difficult terrain and forcing a Dexterity saving throw (DC 15) to avoid falling prone.

  4. Spring-Loaded Box: Finnan has a small box that, when opened, launches a cloud of flour or dust. Anyone in a 5-foot radius must succeed on a Constitution saving throw (DC 15) or be blinded until the end of their next turn.

  5. Tripwire: Finnan strings a tripwire across a hallway or doorway. Anyone moving through the area at more than half speed must make a Dexterity saving throw (DC 15) or fall prone.

Captain Eustace

Race: Human

Class: Fighter (Level 7)


  • Strength: 16 (+3)

  • Dexterity: 14 (+2)

  • Constitution: 15 (+2)

  • Intelligence: 10 (+0)

  • Wisdom: 12 (+1)

  • Charisma: 10 (+0)

Skills: Perception +4, Athletics +6 Action Surge: On his turn, Eustace can take one additional action on top of his regular action and a possible bonus action. Second Wind: Eustace has a limited well of stamina that he can draw on to protect himself from harm. On his turn, he can use a bonus action to regain hit points equal to 1d10 + his fighter level. Once he uses this feature, he must finish a short or long rest before he can use it again. Multiattack: Eustace makes two attacks with his longsword. Longsword: Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d8 + 3) slashing damage, or 10 (1d10 + 3) slashing damage if used with two hands. Bouncer, the Mastiff: See Monster Manual page 332 for stats. Bouncer can sniff out intruders with advantage on Perception checks that rely on smell. He also has keen hearing and sight.


So there you have it, 10 rogues and encounters to spice up your thieves’ guild campaign. Whether your players want to pull off an elaborate heist, uncover a sinister plot, or just cause some general mischief around town, these NPCs and adventures should give you plenty of material to work with. Just remember, in a world of thieves and scoundrels, no one can be trusted and there are always hidden agendas and double-crosses around every corner. Keep your players on their toes, hit them with twists and turns, and most importantly, have fun with it! Running a thieves’ guild campaign should be thrilling for both you and your players. Best of luck and happy gaming!

Bonus Essay: Ten Tips for Writing the Perfect D&D Heist

Welcome, Dungeon Masters, to this bonus blog post where we will delve into the shining example of what Dungeons & Dragons heist-themed adventures can be. Inspired by classic heist films and our favourite campaigns from Wizards of the Coast, we've compiled a list of ten golden keys to unlock the golden vault of your imagination. Let's take players on the ultimate urban treasure hunt in your own campaign world.

  1. Watch and Learn: Heist movies, like Ocean’s Eleven, and famous explorer films are excellent resources for creating grand urban capers. From Silicon Valley to Las Vegas casinos, these films present mad romps that can be mirrored in your D&D heist. Take notes on plot points, character interactions, and how suspense is built.

  2. Make It Personal: The primary target of the heist should not just be a random object. Link it to the story arcs of the player characters, or introduce it as a coveted artifact in your campaign world. For example, the Shard of the Accursed might be desired by a villainous plot.

  3. Time Is Money: Progress clocks can be a fantastic tool to add tension. A time limit on the heist can turn a simple quest into a high-stakes dragon hunt, increasing player engagement.

  4. Challenge Them: Your players should not just face a regular dungeon or vault. Introduce intricate magical traps, security checkpoints, and alarms spells that the party must bypass. This makes the heist experience a splendid treasure trove of challenges.

  5. Consequences Matter: Ensure there's swift justice for the decisions made by the party members, good or bad. This can give depth to your multi-session campaign experience, offering a great way to continue long-running campaigns.

  6. Craft Your Crew: Building the perfect heist crew should be an important part of the D&D heist. Whether recruiting from within the party or introducing new NPCs, each member should have unique skills contributing to the success of the heist.

  7. Map It Out: Providing a player map of the target location can help visualize the heist scenario. It offers the players a chance to strategize and lends a tactile aspect to planning.

  8. Maintain the Law: Firm laws in your world provide a solid foundation for the heist adventure. Whether it's the traditional fantasy city guard or the threat of dragon heists, the possibility of encountering law enforcement adds an extra thrill.

  9. Balance the Tone: Your campaign should not be all doom and gloom. Include lighter moments, perhaps a flying snake mascot or a hilarious encounter with a confused wizard. It could even have a touch of the absurd – a shop selling facial cleansers for dragons, anyone?

  10. Resources Galore: Adventure books, such as the "Dragon Heist Welcome" pack, are one of the best introductions to heist adventures. They offer ample content, and you may find new details for your own campaign. Check out affiliate links to purchase these materials at no additional cost, and to support this blog.

Remember, the only thing more important than a successful heist is to ensure your players are having a great time. After all, a D&D heist adventure, whether it's a one-shot heist or an ongoing campaign, is all about the fun. So, go ahead and make the first choice for your next game session a thrilling, suspenseful, and engaging heist adventure. Your players will thank you for it!

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