Trilby: The Art of Theft - by Ben 'Yahtzee' Croshaw

The Escapist is pleased to present The Art of Theft, the latest game from Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw. The Art of Theft is a mission-based stealth platformer, with an emphasis on gameplay over story. Your goal is to infiltrate a variety of buildings in Chapow City, steal loot, achieve objectives and get out again with the subtlety of a flickering shadow in a ninja outfit.

Tips and Credits

The Story

1991. Two years before the events of 5 Days A Stranger. The eccentric British cat burglar Trilby is at large in an American city, robbing the rich to give to himself. Distrustful of his fellow man and patiently skilled in every aspect of burglary, Trilby is on an ongoing quest to scare the ignorant rich by hitting them where it hurts - their wallets. But will his arrogance cause him to bite off more than he can chew?

The Game

In The Art Of Theft, the player controls Trilby in a 2D stealth adventure as he embarks upon a number of daring high-profile heists in various outposts of wealth and power across Chapow City. With an arsenal of thief skills at his disposal, he must lift the trinkets and valuables of the idle rich while making as little fuss as possible.


Cursor left / cursor right: Creep
Cursor down: Crouch
Cursor up: Use / examine / steal / enter door
X: Wall flatten
Z: Use tazer
Space bar: Grolly up
Down + space bar: Grolly down
Enter: Skip dialogue
Tab: View status bar
Escape: Menu / skip cutscene

The Code of the Heist

  • In the briefing for each heist, Trilby will explain the objectives that need to be fulfilled before he can exit the scene of the crime. This will usually involve stealing a sufficient amount of loot.
  • Steal loot by pressing UP while standing in front of interesting-looking objects or containers.
  • Being seen, tripping laser beams or making critical errors will set off alarms. Each heist has a maximum number of alarms that can be tripped before Trilby must abort the heist and try again.
  • Human enemies can be taken out of the picture by hitting them with an electric shock from the tazer. Trilby doesn't like doing this, however, and will limit himself to a certain number of shocks. Breaking that limit causes Trilby to abort the heist.
  • TIP: When a human guard sees you, and confirms having seen you, they will attempt to use their radios and call in an alarm. You have however long that takes to decide whether you want to lose an alarm or a tazer, so think fast.
  • Trilby will usually have to make his way back to his starting position after completing his objectives, but not always. Aborting the heist even after completing the objectives does not constitute completion of a heist, if only due to Trilby's impeccable personal standards.
  • At the end of each heist Trilby's performance will be graded on time taken, loot stolen, alarms tripped and guards tazed, then given an overall grade. The worst grade is C, and the best is the Trilby symbol, which denotes a perfect heist.
  • At the end of all the heists, an overall score will be given for the whole game. A good enough score at this stage could result in some interesting rewards ...