Mage / Thief is a multi-classing option available in the entire Baldur's Gate series.  Gnomes can be this class, but are always Illusionist / Thieves instead.

Humans can dual-class this combination as well with the sufficient stats.

Introduction[edit | edit source]

The Mage / Thief is a powerful, tactical character that has a wide range of available tools to solve encounters and dungeons. They lack in toe-to-toe combat without significant support, however.

As a mage, the character has access to high lore and arcane spells.  The progression is slower than that of a single-class mage of course, but not prohibitively so.  Also, the player should keep in mind that they are unable to cast spells while wearing any armor (with few exceptions).  They can eventually select every mage High-Level Class Ability, but due to the required access to 9th level spell slots, they are significantly delayed in acquiring them.

As a thief, the character has access to thieving abilities and backstabbing. This allows the character to act as an assassin for devastating damage, to detect and disarm traps, to hide in shadows in order to scout ahead of the group, to pick locks, and to pickpocket.

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

The Mage / Thief requires more hands-on management than many other classes; in order to fully utilize each class' benefits, the character must manage resources well and understand interactions between their thieving abilities and spells.

The backstab ability can shine on this class. Compared to single-class thieves, the slower THAC0 progression reduces backstab success rate and lower HP makes it harder to survive after becoming visible, but these shortcomings can be mitigated by the effective use of spells. For example, Tenser's Transformation can dramatically decrease THAC0 and long duration defensive spells such as Shield or Stoneskin can be cast before entering stealth to improve survival. When using the Robe of Vecna, Invisibility and Improved Invisibility can be used to allow the M/T to immediately re-enter stealth after breaking it, avoiding retaliation and setting up for multiple backstabs.

The Mislead spell is especially notable for this class combination. After using Mislead, attacks will not break invisibility as long as the duplicate image remains, allowing the M/T to continue to backstab until the image is dispelled, destroyed, or expires. APR-increasing spells such as Haste can also allow for a greater number of backstabs while Mislead is active. At extremely high levels, the M/T can use Time Stop or Set Time Trap in combination with Mislead to guarantee multiple backstabs.

Outside of backstabbing, the M/T can use the thief's Hide in Shadows ability to position more effectively for encounters. For example, the M/T can position behind an enemy group, allow their party to engage normally, and then use area of effect spells like Agannazar's Scorcher and Skull Trap with better precision.

M/T's are ideally suited to using the Fog of War/Line of Sight strategy since they can both scout for enemies while hidden and then use AOE spells to dispatch them without detection. The ability to cast simulacrum multiplies the number of available Thief HLAs (multiple uses of Assassination, more Spike Traps, etc.).

Thieves' Detect Illusion is also useful for this class, as it can be used as an alternative to True Sight and save valuable Level 6 Spell Slots for other spells. Detect Illusion can be increased quickly at the expense of Move Silently and Hide in Shadows. The rationale behind this is that M/T can use Invisibility and Improved Invisibility to scout ahead and backstab enemies and both these spells occupy lower tier spell slots.

Unlike for a single-class thief, the Use Any Item HLA offers fewer advantages for this class combination, as they already have access to many of the interesting items from its mage class, and the weapons they gain access to cannot be used to backstab. Even so, it unlocks access to some very helpful equipment, such as additional THAC0 boosting equipment (like Wondrous Gloves and Circlet of Lost Souls), which improves the success rate of backstabs, and the coveted Vhailor's Helm which gives early access to the powerful Simulacrum ability.

As a Dual-Class[edit | edit source]

Humans can approximate this class by dual-classing if they meet the attribute requirements for doing so. Note when creating a character that they may not be Lawful Good and dual-class into thief. As with other dual-class combinations, it is generally preferable to dual from thief into mage, as your HP is better and mages will benefit much more from their uncapped progression than a thief will.

Kit Comparison for Dual-Classing:

  • Assassin: Thac0 and damage are improved by 1 point, which stacks with the Poison Weapon ability. The combat bonuses and poison ability also apply to magically created weapons such as Melf's Minute Meteors and Energy Blades, adding a chance to poison enemies with these projectiles. The saving throw penalties that could be obtained by a high level assassin can be replicated by casting Greater Malison. If one opts to forgo Stealth and instead rely on poisoned projectiles and Invisibility-backed backstabs, then the assassin can still serve as a utility thief despite the 10 point thieving ability penalty.
  • Swashbuckler: The AC, Thac0 and damage are improved based on level, and since thieves level up quickly, it is easy to obtain bonuses of 3 AC and 2 Thac0/damage bonus at level 10 without hampering the mage progression. AC bonus complements the lightly armored mage, and the Thac0 and damage bonuses apply to magical projectiles like Melf's Minute Meteors. The ability to dual wield and to specialize in thief melee weapons complements Tenser's Transformation. If you find backstabbing tedious, then this kit has no disadvantages compared to a plain thief.
  • Bounty Hunter: While you may not obtain the higher level versions of special snares, it may be considered an advantage since those traps aren't necessarily better. The lower level special snares deal damage and have a higher chance of crippling the enemy with Slow or Hold. The 5 points thieving ability penalty is minimal so this kit can still serve as a utility thief with trapping abilities.
  • Shadowdancer: This kit has many abilities to improve the mage's survivability, such as +1 bonus to all saves. Hide in Shadows can be done in plain sight. Shadowstep can be used to avoid being cornered or to position oneself favorably for a backstab. With a 5 point thieving ability penalty and reliance on stealth, it is difficult to play the utility thief role. The dual class requirements are restrictive.

Common Level Ranges for Dual-Classing:

  • Level 2 M>T: While dual-classing from Mage is not usually recommended, a level 2 dual-class has interesting bonuses.  While early game HP will be reduced, the class will be able to cast spells from scrolls and use wands for the remainder of the series.  The thief will eventually gain Use Any Item, making this advantage redundant, but this will give them a lighter version of that ability throughout Baldur's Gate and Shadows of Amn without any significant drawback.
  • Level 6 T>M: This is the highest thief level that can still reach the maximum mage level in the original Baldur's Gate, with or without the expansion installed.
  • Level 9 T>M: At level 9, the thief gains a x4 backstab multiplier, if its kit is not swashbuckler or shadowdancer. It is also a breakpoint for the assassin's poison weapon ability. This is the highest level that a thief can dual to mage and regain its skills within the Siege of Dragonspear experience cap.
  • Level 10 T>M: This level gets the maximum Hit Dice from the thief class, as well as being a breakpoint for swashbucker attack and AC bonuses. Also for bounty hunters, specifically, this is the highest level they can dual at to keep the slow trap as their Special Snare (which inflicts slow with a -4 saving throw penalty).
  • Level 13 T>M: At level 13, the thief gains its highest backstab multiplier for kits besides assassin and swashbuckler. The character can also still get the maximum mage spell slots, same as a single class mage.
  • Level 22 T>M: The latest level that a thief can dual to mage and regain its skills within the Throne of Bhaal experience cap. This character gains no thief HLA's unlike other extreme late game dual-classes.
  • Level 23 M>T: The latest level that a mage can dual to thief and be reactivated within the Throne of Bhaal experience cap. Unlike the other way around, this still can gain a single thief HLA at the expense of much less HP. However, dual-classing this late either way requires an impractically long time to reactivate the first class.

Note: In the original Baldur's Gate, it is possible to select a Specialist Mage kit when dual-classing to mage as long as the character meets the secondary attribute requirement for the specialization. These characters lose their specialization when imported to Shadows of Amn as this feature was removed, and the Enhanced Editions do not allow it.

Special abilities[edit | edit source]

The mage/thief is able to combine the special abilities from both of their parent classes; see there for more details. The following list summarizes advantages that a mage/thief has over either a pure mage or a pure thief:

Companions[edit | edit source]

Baldur's Gate[edit | edit source]

  • Imoen has sufficient attributes to dual-class from unkitted Thief to Mage. In the original version, her attributes also allow her to choose any specialization without a Wisdom requirement (anything but Abjurer, Diviner, and Necromancer).
  • Xzar has sufficient attributes to dual-class from Necromancer to Thief if he uses the Manual of Quickness of Action to boost his Dexterity .
  • Safana has sufficient attributes to dual-class from unkitted Thief to Mage if she uses the Tome of Clear Thought to boost her Intelligence. In the original version, she can specialize as an Enchanter, Illusionist, or a Transmuter. She may also be recruited in Siege of Dragonspear.

Shadows of Amn[edit | edit source]

Ability Scores Table[edit | edit source]

Character Ability Score Elf Half-Elf Gnome
Strength 3-18 3-18 6-18
Dexterity 9-19 9-18 16-18
Constitution 6-17 6-18 8-18
Intelligence 9-18 9-18 9-19
Wisdom 3-18 3-18 2-17
Charisma 8-18 3-18 3-18

During character creation, rolls below the minimum value for the class will be increased to that value.

Armor[edit | edit source]

The following armors will not disable spell casting or stealth abilities.

Item Type AC
Adventurer's Robe Robe -
Aslyferund Elven Chain Chain Mail 0
Bladesinger Chain Chain Mail 1
Drow Adamantine Chain Chain Mail 0
Drow Elven Chain Chain Mail 2
Elven Chain +1 Chain Mail 4
Elven Chain Mail Chain Mail 5
Human Flesh Leather 7
Knave's Robe Robe -
Mage Robe of Cold Resistance Robe -
Mage Robe of Electric Resistance Robe -
Mage Robe of Fire Resistance Robe -
Robe of Goodman Hayes Robe -
Robe of Invocation Robe -
Robe of Red Flames Robe -
Robe of the Apprenti Robe 3
Robe of the Evil Archmagi Robe 5
Robe of the Good Archmagi Robe 5
Robe of the Neutral Archmagi Robe 5
Robe of Vecna Robe 5
Sylvan Chain Chain Mail 3
Traveler's Robe Robe -

High-Level Class Abilities[edit | edit source]

High level class abilities are added in the expansion Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal and are in Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition. These abilities are available at level 14/16, reached at 3,000,000 XP. This class gains all HLA's from the standard mage and thief pools.  Note that any HLA may be selected regardless of the class which is leveling up.

Note that, because of the required access to certain spell slots (notably 9th level spell slots for the 10th level mage HLA's), most mage HLA's will not be selectable until the class reaches mage level 18 at 6,000,000 XP.  The player will have enough level-ups available to select all mage HLA's if they choose.

1 - May only be selected once

Spell Slots Progression[edit | edit source]

The M/T gains spell slots identical to those of the unkitted mage; however, because of their slightly slower progression, they will have less spell slots during the course of normal play.  Note that gnome Illusionist / Thieves will gain a bonus spell slot for each spell level in exchange for the inability to cast Necromancy spells.

Spell lvl /
Wizard lvl
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Total # of
spell slots
1 1 1
2 2 2
3 2 1 3
4 3 2 5
5 4 2 1 7
6 Baldur's Gate GTRBPSK Icon BG1.pngBaldur's Gate (1998)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate campaign.
4 2 2 8
7 Tales of the Sword Coast Icon.pngBaldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast (1999)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast‎ campaign.

Baldur's Gate LOGOBG00001 Icon SoD.pngBaldur's Gate:
Enhanced Edition
(2012)
This icon indicates content from the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition campaign.

4 3 2 1 10
8 4 3 3 2 12
9 4 3 3 2 1 13
10 Siege of Dragonspear LOGOSOD00001 Icon SoD.pngBaldur's Gate:
Siege of Dragonspear
(2016)
This icon indicates content from the Siege of Dragonspear campaign of the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition.

The Black Pits LOGOTBP00001 Icon SoD.pngThe Black Pits (2012)
This icon indicates content from the Black Pits‎ campaign in the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition.

4 4 3 2 2 15
11 4 4 4 3 3 18
12 4 4 4 4 4 1 21
13 Shadows of Amn LOADCNTR00004 Icon SoA.pngBaldur's Gate II:
Shadows of Amn
(2000)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn campaign.
5 5 5 4 4 2 25
14 5 5 5 4 4

2

1 26
15 5 5 5 5 5 2 1 28
16 5 5 5 5 5 3 2 1 31
17 5 5 5 5 5 3 3 2 33
18 5 5 5 5 5 3 3 2 1 34
19 5 5 5 5 5 3 3 3 1 35
20 Throne of Bhaal LOADCNTR00004 Icon ToB.pngBaldur's Gate II:
Throne of Bhaal
(2001)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal campaign.

Shadows of Amn LOGOSOA00001 Icon BG2EE.pngBaldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition – Shadows of Amn (2013)
This icon indicates content from the Shadows of Amn campaign of the Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition.
  Gladiators of Thay LOGOTBP00001 Icon BG2EE.pngThe Black Pits II:
Gladiators of Thay
(2013)
This icon indicates content from the Black Pits II: Gladiators of Thay‎ campaign in the Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition.

5 5 5 5 5 4 3 3 2 37

Table for experience, weapon proficiency points and hitpoints[edit | edit source]

Level (M/T) Level Cap Experience required Hit Dice Weapon Prof. Base THAC0 Saving Throws (D/W/P/B/S) BS Mult. # of
HLAs
1/1 0 ½*(1d4+1d6) 2 20 13/11/12/15/12 ×2
1/2 2,500 ½*(1d4+2d6) 20 13/11/12/15/12 ×2
2/3 5,000 ½*(2d4+3d6) 19 13/11/12/15/12 ×2
3/4 10,000 ½*(3d4+4d6) +1 19 13/11/12/15/12 ×2
4/5 20,000 ½*(4d4+5d6) 18 12/11/11/15/12 ×3
5/6 40,000 ½*(5d4+6d6) 18 12/11/11/15/12 ×3
6/7 Baldur's Gate GTRBPSK Icon BG1.pngBaldur's Gate (1998)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate campaign.
80,000 ½*(6d4+7d6) 17 12/9/11/13/10 ×3
7/7 120,000 ½*(7d4+7d6) 17 12/9/11/13/10 ×3
7/8 Tales of the Sword Coast Icon.pngBaldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast (1999)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast‎ campaign.

Baldur's Gate LOGOBG00001 Icon SoD.pngBaldur's Gate:
Enhanced Edition
(2012)
This icon indicates content from the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition campaign.

140,000 ½*(7d4+8d6) +1 17 12/9/11/13/10 ×3
8/8 180,000 ½*(8d4+8d6) 17 12/9/11/13/10 ×3
8/9 220,000 ½*(8d4+9d6) 16 11/9/10/13/10 ×4
9/9 270,000 ½*(9d4+9d6) 16 11/9/10/13/10 ×4
9/10 320,000 ½*(9d4+10d6) 16 11/9/10/13/10 ×4
9/11 440,000 ½*(9d4+10d6)+1 15 11/9/10/13/10 ×4
10/11 Siege of Dragonspear LOGOSOD00001 Icon SoD.pngBaldur's Gate:
Siege of Dragonspear
(2016)
This icon indicates content from the Siege of Dragonspear campaign of the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition.

The Black Pits LOGOTBP00001 Icon SoD.pngThe Black Pits (2012)
This icon indicates content from the Black Pits‎ campaign in the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition.

500,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+1 15 11/9/10/13/10 ×4
11/11 750,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+2 15 11/7/9/11/8 ×4
11/12 880,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+3 +1 15 11/7/9/11/8 ×4
11/13 1,320,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+4 14 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
12/13 1,500,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+5 14 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
12/14 1,760,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+6 14 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
12/15 2,200,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+7 13 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
13/15 2,250,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+8 13 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
13/16 Shadows of Amn LOADCNTR00004 Icon SoA.pngBaldur's Gate II:
Shadows of Amn
(2000)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn campaign.
2,640,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+9 +1 13 10/7/9/11/8 ×5
14/16 3,000,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+10 13 10/7/9/11/8 ×5 1
14/17 3,080,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+11 12 9/6/8/11/7 ×5 2
14/18 3,520,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+12 12 9/6/8/11/7 ×5 3
15/18 3,750,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+13 12 9/6/8/11/7 ×5 4
15/19 3,960,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+14 11 9/6/8/11/7 ×5 5
15/20 4,400,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+15 +1 11 9/6/8/11/7 ×5 6
16/20 4,500,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+16 11 9/5/7/9/6 ×5 7
16/21 4,840,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+17 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 8
17/21 5,250,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+18 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 9
17/22 5,280,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+19 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 10
17/23 5,720,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+20 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 11
18/23 6,000,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+21 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 12
18/24 6,160,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+22 +1 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 13
18/25 6,600,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+23 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 14
19/25 6,750,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+24 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 15
19/26 7,040,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+25 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 16
19/27 7,480,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+26 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 17
20/27 7,500,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+27 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 18
20/28 Throne of Bhaal LOADCNTR00004 Icon ToB.pngBaldur's Gate II:
Throne of Bhaal
(2001)
This icon indicates content from the original Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal campaign.

Shadows of Amn LOGOSOA00001 Icon BG2EE.pngBaldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition – Shadows of Amn (2013)
This icon indicates content from the Shadows of Amn campaign of the Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition.
Gladiators of Thay LOGOTBP00001 Icon BG2EE.pngThe Black Pits II:
Gladiators of Thay
(2013)
This icon indicates content from the Black Pits II: Gladiators of Thay‎ campaign in the Baldur's Gate II: Enhanced Edition.

7,920,000 ½*(10d4+10d6)+28 +1 10 8/4/7/9/5 ×5 19
Total 9 19

Stronghold[edit | edit source]

In the Shadows of Amn campaign, M/T protagonists may choose between one of two strongholds.  Upon accepting one, they will be unable to accept another.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.