(NOTES: -This article is written primarily with Siege Perilous in mind, as it is my home shard. -This is submitted for your evalution. Please comment. If it's worthy, I hope it will be included in the sure-to-be upcomming FAQ on the ninja profession.) Concerning the Ninja, his Mission, and How to Accomplish It The ninja is a man or woman who is able to perform acts of espionage, sabotage, and assassination. He or she performs these acts for two types of reasons: personal and business. Personal actions are usually a matter of revenge. Business between a ninja and an employer usually involves spying on or attacking--indirectly by sabotage or directly by assassination--an enemy of the employer. The motive is inconsequential; the method is the same. PART ONE: Espionage Espionage Espionage is the act of gathering information. This information can either be given to the ninja's employer, or used to facilitate the assassination of a target. Identification of the target is the first step. If the target is a guilded person, he or she should be researched on the player database at www.uo.com . The ninja will be able to find out some of the person's skills there (if they have the option enabled, you can find out all of their stats). If the guild has a web page, it should be studied for information that may assist in tracking this person. A guild's town or guildhouse can be staked out to see if the person arrives there, how frequently he or she goes there, and what he or she does there. This can also give the ninja a chance to follow his or her target to see where the target frequents, who they've befriended, what player vendors they shop at, or any information that seems relevant to the ninja's mission. If the player is not a guilded person, the job becomes more difficult. Asking about the person to anyone but the ninja's employer can be detrimental; unless the target is notorious, many people will be unwilling or unable to help the ninja locate him or her. They may even tip the person off that someone is after them. Instead, the person must be searched for. One method of of tracking the target is to stake out the place where the ninja first encountered (or where the employer has seen) the target around the same time the target was there during the previous encounter. Another method is to attend player-run or moderator-run events and visit popular areas at peak times. These are occasions where a target might expose himself or herself. Since the target is not guilded in this instance, information regarding his profession and status must be learned from observance. If the character has a title, such as "Elder Mage", the ninja will know the target's primary skill. The anatomy skill will reveal a target's general strength and dexterity, while the evaluating intelligence skill will allow the ninja to know his or her intelligence. The character should be watched closely for any skills he or she uses prominently, whether he or she has any pets that require taming skill to possess, what weapons he or she uses, et cetera. The ninja should attempt to trail the target once located, and use similar methods as he or she would with guilded targets to discover such things as his or her house's location, friends, favorite player-vendors, or any other information that seems relevant to the ninja's mission. The same tactics used to spy on a person are used to spy on a guild, only that the scope is much more broad. In addition to the above-mentioned methods of gathering information on a target person, a sensible ninja will search a target guild's houses for runebooks. These will clue the ninja as to where the guild has regular access. A ninja with the magery skill may wish to take along a runebook and a few runes and mark these spots. The ninja's reliance on stealth makes him or her an ideal choice for information garnering. Although the information gathered by a ninja is sufficient for some, in many cases the ninja's espionage work leads to sabatage and/or assassination. End notes: -Geographical knowlege is very useful for a ninja. Knowing how to get to the dungeons, towns, and champion spawns of Sosaria will greatly assist a ninja in finding his or her targets. -Remaining undetected is a ninja's highest priority. If someone notices a ninja is following them, they will become unpredictable. They may attack the ninja, try to stay within guard zones, call the EA support team to complain about being harrassed, or any number of things that may cause a ninja to fail his or her mission. When detected inside a house, a ninja may be banned from that house. This could set back his or her mission, if not causing him or her to fail. -Many houses have noise-maker statues, which--when activated, make a sound which will alert anyone in the house that someone is moving. If the ninja stays several tiles away from these, they will not go off. If the ninja must pass by these, the shadow jump skill will allow him or her to pass by them silently. -Two other problems when navigating houses are doors and teleporters. Anyone inside a house will be alerted to a ninja's presence if a door mysteriously opens or a teleporter sounds. A ninja should never open a door while another person is in the house; wait for someone to open the door and follow them inside. Teleporters should never be used while another person is in the house. These is no way to mask their sound. -Using items, like bandages, will cause a ninja to reveal himself. Using a gate produced by the Gate Travel spell will also reveal a ninja. A stealthed ninja can be revealed by a monster if the ninja is within the monster's sight radius and is moving. Experience will teach a ninja how to remain hidden. -One way of for a ninja to practice staying hidden around monsters is to strip naked and stealth his or her way from the entrance to the bottom of a major dungeon, like Covetous or Deceit.