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Version 0.29: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.
A Brigand is a shady character who is especially good at killing, using daggers or darts. They start with a dagger, a robe and cloak, poisoned darts, and a few deadly and rare curare darts.

Brigands are operatives who specialize in stealth and the killing of unsuspecting victims. They start with the tools to silently and quickly take down the living.

Preferred Species

Troll, Demonspawn, Spriggan, Vine Stalker, and Vampire are the recommended races if you pick a Brigand background.

Racial restrictions

Felids are forbidden from becoming Brigands because they cannot throw darts.

Starting Equipment

Some species may receive different items based on their unique restrictions.

Starting Skills and Stats

These are adjusted by your species' aptitudes.

Choosing Brigand adds 3 to your starting Strength, 3 to your starting Intelligence and 6 to your starting Dexterity.


Brigands are a good general starting background for stealthy types; the enchanted dagger handles early-game monsters very well, while the curare and poisoned darts are excellent for taking down tougher targets.

The power of curare should not be underestimated - almost all early-game threats, up to Lair, can be greatly weakened by the slow and strong poison. This assumes that you can hit with the dart. The Throwing skill increases your chances to hit with your darts, while Throwing and Stealth increases the effectiveness of atropa and datura darts. Since you only start with 3 curare darts, and there's a 1 in 6 chance that they mulch after fired, you'll have 18 shots on average. You can conserve your curare darts by using the slow to kite monsters, while continuing to throw poisoned darts at them to slowly whittle their HP down.


  • In 0.29, most backgrounds were buffed; Brigands gained an extra poison and curare dart.
  • Prior to 0.26, Brigands were called Assassins.
  • Prior to 0.24, Assassins began with a blowgun and their respective needles of poison and curare.
  • Prior to 0.15, the starting dagger had an enchantment of +2, +2.
  • Prior to 0.14, Assassins began with potions of poison identified, and had 50 gold.
Warriors FighterGladiatorMonkHunterBrigand
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Warrior-mages EnchanterTransmuterArcane MarksmanWarper
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Adventurers ArtificerWandererDelver