thief build
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ESO Thief Build

Cloak and Dagger is a fun Nightblade Thief Build in ESO. Its purpose is to make gold from the activity of stealing without being detected. The Build is designed in such a way that you will never have to kill anyone unless you want to. It offers several skills that will help you escape if you are caught stealing. A perfect Build for an ESO Pacifist Gameplay!

Although active skills are important for its gameplay, this Thief Build relies mostly on passive skills from Legerdemain, Thieves Guild and Vampire Skill-lines. This is also a great Build to complete Daily Quests for the Thieves Guild and Dark Brotherhood, and increase your rank with them!

If you are a new player, you can take a look at my Nightblade Beginner Guide. For a Gold Farming – Speed Build, you can take a look at Runner. If you are looking for a Solo PVE Build for Arenas like the Maelstrom Arena and Vateshran Hollows, take a look at my Magicka Nightblade Solo Build. You can find more Builds in the Nightblade Builds page.

Table of Contents

ESO Thief Build Setup

The Build is designed to offer great resources recovery and allow you to steal items undetected! Even if you get caught, you can easily escape from enemies without killing anyone. We are using 1 piece of Magma Incarnate for the recovery. Baron Thirsk is a good alternative. Finally the Ring of the Wild Hunt for the speed boost when out of combat!

HeadNight Mother's EmbraceMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
ShouldersMagma IncarnateMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
HandsVesture of Darloc BraeMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
LegsVesture of Darloc BraeMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
ChestVesture of Darloc BraeMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
WaistVesture of Darloc BraeMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
FeetVesture of Darloc BraeMediumDivinesMax. Stamina
NecklaceNight Mother's EmbraceJewelRobustStamina Recovery
RingNight Mother's EmbraceJewelRobustStamina Recovery
RingRing of the Wild HuntJewelSwiftStamina Recovery
Two Handed WeaponNight Mother's EmbraceBowDefendingHardening
One Handed WeaponNight Mother's EmbraceDaggerInfusedAbsorb Stamina
One Handed WeaponNight Mother's EmbraceDaggerDefendingPoison

Armor Sets for ESO Thief Build

Skills for ESO Thief Build

The following skills will help you remain hidden and steal as many items as possible! The Front bar is dedicated to the art of stealing while the Back bar offers offensive skills to defend yourself if you have to!

Shadowy DisguiseRefreshing PathConcealed WeaponMirageMass HysteriaSoul Tether
AmbushBlood CrazeRelentless FocusLeeching StrikesResolving VigorIncapacitating Strike
  • Shadowy Disguise(Shadow Cloak): Our cloak and very important survival skill.
  • Refreshing Path(Path of Darkness): We use this skill to move faster when escaping. Can also heal us if we are under attack.
  • Concealed Weapon(Veiled Strike): Helps us move faster.
  • Mirage(Blur): Our defensive buff if we are under attack.
  • Mass Hysteria(Aspect of Terror): Another defensive skill that can help us escape.
  • Soul Tether(Soul Shred): An additional escape method if necessary.
  • Ambush(Teleport Strike): Our gap closer. Use it to teleport to a far away enemy and escape or to fight if you wish.
  • Blood Craze(Twin Slashes): An offensive skill that can also heal us.
  • Relentless Focus(Grim Focus): Offensive skill!
  • Leeching Strikes(Siphoning Strikes): Important self-buff, essential for our sustain in combat.
  • Resolving Vigor(Vigor): Our healing ability.
  • Incapacitating Strike(Death Stroke): Our offensive Ultimate. No need to use if you don’t plan to kill NPC.

Important Passive Skills for ESO Thief Build

Very important Passive abilities that will help you play as a Thief in ESO!

  • Legerdemain: Improved Hiding, Light Fingers, Trafficker. Must be at least level 3 to be truly effective as a Thief.
  • Vampire: Dark Stalker, Undeath.
  • Thieves Guild: Haggling, Clemency, Veil of Shadows.
  • Dark Brotherhood: Blade of Woe but only if you pickpocket a lot. Since NPC can only carry 3 items we can pickpocket from them, we use Blade of Woe to “reset” empty NPC.

Champion Points for ESO Thief Build

Below you will find the best Champion Points setup for the Build. If you would like to learn more about Champion Points and how they work, you can read my ESO Champion Points Guide.


  • Slottable Stars: Arcane Supremacy, Endless Endurance, Duelist’s Rebuff, Ironclad
  • Passive: Eldritch Insight, Tireless Discipline, Piercing, Battle Mastery, Mighty, Quick Recovery, Hardy, Elemental Aegis, Preparation, Precision, Blessed,


  • Slottable Stars: Infamous, Cutpurse’s Art, Sustaining Shadows, Steed’s Blessing
  • Passive: Gilded Fingers, Fortune’s Favor, Friends in Low Places(slottable, required for path), Out of Sight, Shadowstrike or Fade Away(Slottables, required for Path), Wanderer, Steadfast Enchantment


  • Slottable Stars: Fortified, Rejuvenation, Boundless Vitality, Celerity
  • Passive: Sprinter, Hasty, Tireless Guardian, Hero’s Vigor, Mystic Tenacity, Tumbling, Defiance

Consumables for ESO Thief Build

We are using Jewels of Misrule as Food and simple Essence of Magicka or Tri-Stat Potions.

Info for ESO Thief Build

Several important info for the ESO Thief Build. What Mundus to use, the best race for the build and how to assign your attribute points.

Attribute Points

19 points to Magicka and 45 to Stamina

Mundus Stone

The Atronach for better Magicka Recovery.

What Race is best for ESO Thief Build

Khajiit is the best option for the build because of their stealth and stealing racial passives. Cutpurse passive boosts pickpocket chance while Feline Ambush reduces Detection Radius in Stealth.

Vampire or Werewolf

At least Vampire Stage 1 for the Dark Stalker passive. Vampire Stage 3 if you also want the Undeath Passive.

Rotation for ESO Thief Build

Stay in the shadows and steal everything that moves! Very easy gameplay, just be careful of NPC proximity. If you are caught, use one of your many defensive skills to escape. Mass Hysteria, Soul Tether and Refreshing Path can help you escape without killing anyone! The Hasty Retreat passive from the Bow line can also give you a boost when in combat and help you escape.

You will never have to kill anything unless you want to. Which makes this build the perfect option for an ESO Pacifist Gameplay.

FAQ – ESO Thief Build

Can I be a Thief in ESO?

You can be a Thief in ESO and have lots of fun in the process! A Thief Build is not only a great way to make gold in the game but also provides the only Pacifist gameplay in ESO! For the Best Thief Build in ESO you can take a look at this Cloak and Dagger Build!

More Nightblade Builds

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