lock picking

Use: Cannot be used unskilled without the appropriate tools.
Unskilled use with tools penalized. Macro skill.
Sample specializations: Door locks, padlocks, safes, bank vaults, combination locks
Axiom: Tech 10
This skill gives its user the ability to surreptitiously open locks and safes with physical
tumblers and mechanisms.
The use of the lock picking skill requires a set of picks or tools, though a skilled character can improvise tools out of hairpins, paper clips, a screwdriver, etc. Unskilled
characters cannot improvise and so are unable to use lock picking if they do not have a proper set of tools.
Some types of locks, such as combination locks, can be picked without any tools. Locks that do not have physical mechanisms for the character to manipulate, such as an electronic lock or a magical ward, cannot be defeated with this skill.
Electronic locks require the security skill and magical wards fall under the divination magic
Lock picking cannot be used to disarm traps and alarms that may be around or attached to locks, but a character can detect the presence of an alarm or trap on a lock by making a successful skill check against the difficulty of the lock itself. Disarming the trap or alarm will require the use of another skill, such as security.


Sample locks Difficulty
Typical interior residential door 5
Typical interior office door 8
Padlock, exterior door 10
Wall safe/deadbolt 13
Bank vault 18


Poorly constructed lock -3
Well constructed lock +2
High-security lock +4
No short time limit -3
Blueprints and diagrams -3
Specialized tools -1 To -5

Example: Barbara’s ninja Yukitada is trying to break out of an Ayslish dungeon. The guards took all of her equipment but she is able to improvise a lock pick from a piece of wire hidden in one of her shoes. The lock on the door is a padlock for a base difficulty of 10. It is well constructed which increases the difficulty by +2. Yukitada knows that the guards don’t return until morning though so there is no real time limit, which decreases the difficulty by -3.
The final difficulty is 9. Yukitada’s lock picking skill is 14. Barbara rolls a 9, which is a bonus of -1, for an action total of 13. Yukitada plays with the lock for a little while and easily opens it.

lock picking

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