In this spirit, I present my house-rules for handling lock-picking.
Anyone, with access to a set of lock-picks and a little bit of training*, can attempt to pick a lock. An attempt takes one Turn (ten minutes) and succeeds if a 1 is rolled on 1d6.
* When I say "a little bit of training" I really do mean a little bit. Basic lock-picking is easy; a couple of hours instruction is enough to get anyone of reasonable intelligence into action.If a 6 is rolled, the lock is unopenable — the pick breaks off in it, the mechanism is jammed, or something else similar occurs — and will require attention from somebody with real skill (i.e. a Thief or a locksmith) to clear it before another attempt can be made.
If you buy a set of lock-picks as part of your starting equipment, it can be assumed that you've had that basic training as part of your character's background. If not, (i.e. after character creation) you'd have to seek out such training in-game.
A Thief works in fundamentally the same way, but has advantages:
- A Thief takes a Round (one minute) per attempt, not a Turn.
- A Thief succeeds on a 1 or 2, but still jams the lock on a 6.
- A Thief can use a successful picklock roll to clear a jammed lock. (Note that a 6 rolled on a clearing attempt makes the situation worse: each additional 6 doubles the number of successes required to clear the lock).
- At every three levels, a Thief gets an additional die to roll per attempt; a 1 or 2 rolled on any of them indicates a success, and a success on one die can be used to cancel out a jamming result (a 6) on another (a success used to cancel a jamming result doesn't count against the successes required to open the lock).