Typically used with: Cunning.
In short: avoid detection. A wise man once said: "the primary element of a surprise attack is surprise." A character with ranks in Stealth knows the best place to stash herself when the chips hit the fan, and knows which floorboards are the squeaky ones when sneaking down a hallway. This skill can be used to tiptoe past the imperial guards, hide among the shadows, stash the evidence, ditch a tail, or follow someone through a dark alley.
You must subtract your Size from Stealth checks because it's easier for smaller creatures to avoid notice and harder for larger ones. This applies to all uses of this skill. For example, a firna is hiding from a juren. The firna gets +1 to her Stealth check, while the juren takes −5 to her Perception.
You can use this skill to hide yourself from prying eyes. Pick a hiding spot and make a Stealth check. It takes a Perception check for someone to notice you there. If your Stealth check is higher, they have no idea you're nearby, and gain the wide-eyed condition against your first attack. If their Perception check meets or exceeds your Stealth check, they notice you.
In order to prevent oneself from being seen, one needs an actual hiding place. You cannot hide while being directly observed. You'll need some kind of diversion to make observers look elsewhere, for instance, a friend's Perform, Seduce, or Taunt. You could also try to make a Bluff check ("What in the world could that be?!"). A shadow will do as a place to hide, but if the opponent attempting to perceive you can see in the dark or in low light, it's just as useless as if you were in the middle of the room. Any ranged attack you make while hiding will reveal your location.
You can also use this skill to hide an object (or several objects, you dirty smuggler). Choose a hiding place for the object and make a Stealth roll. The result of your roll becomes the DL required to locate the object in the future (with Search). The object's Size must be subtracted from your Stealth roll, meaning a small object grants you a bonus, and a large object imposes a penalty.
You can make a Stealth check to sneak past other creatures without being noticed. Anyone who wants to notice you creep by must make a Perception check. If your Stealth check is higher, they are oblivious to your movement. If their Perception check meets or exceeds your Stealth check, they notice you.
As long as you're sneaking, you gain the hampered condition, as you can't move at full speed while avoiding detection. If you try to move at your normal speed, you take a −10 penalty on the Stealth check. If you try to make a Dash check while sneaking, you take a −20 penalty on the Stealth check.
To escape from someone following your trail, you can make a Stealth check to cover up your tracks. Your pursuer makes a Search check. If they exceed your Stealth check, they can successfully follow the trail. Each time the trail is broken, such as by crossing a stream, or stepping out of a meadow and onto a rocky hill, the you can make another Stealth check, while the tracker is forced to make another Search check to pick up the new trail. If you're moving together with a group, everyone must make Stealth checks. Your pursuers can follow if they exceed the lowest Stealth check, but they can't tell how many of you there are unless they beat the highest Stealth check.
Favorable terrain grants bonuses to your Stealth check, while unfavorable terrain imposes penalties.
|Extremely soft terrain (e.g. mud, snow, wet sand)||−8|
|Soft terrain (e.g. desert, farmland)||−4|
|Normal terrain (e.g. plains, forest)||+0|
|Firm terrain (e.g. gravel)||+4|
|Extremely firm terrain (e.g. stone, wood planks)||+8|