FFX: How To Get Master Thief (And Is It Worth It?)

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Every fiend in Final Fantasy X has two items available to steal: a common and rare steal.

When you steal from any enemy, common items have a ~75% chance of being stolen, and the rare items have the remaining ~25%.

Master Thief is an armor ability that makes it so when you steal, you always get the rare item. And yes, it’s extremely useful.

Neslug at the Monster Arena / FFX HD
Neslug battle

Getting the Master Thief Ability

Master Thief requires 30 Pendulums to customize – and this is the only way to get it on any armor. There are no fiends or bosses that will drop any equipment with Master Thief already on it.

With that said, Pendulums are kind of hard to come by.

In fact, there’s only two repeatable methods in the entire game that let you get Pendulums:

  • Neslug at the Monster Arena has x1 Pendulum as its common drop
  • Bribe Master Tonberries with 1,000,000 gil for x2 Pendulums

Yep, that’s it. Getting 30 in total is a lot of work.

Neslug is unlocked after you capture one copy of every single fiend in Spira. So this is quite the undertaking.

Master Tonberry can be found in the Omega Ruins. So bribing a Master Tonberry might be the simplest method, assuming you can stack enough Gil.

Master Tonberry in the Omega Ruins / FFX HD
Master Tonberry in the Omega Ruins

One-Time Pendulum Drops

There are two other one-time rewards that give you Pendulums.

These methods are not repeatable, but they each give you enough to customize Master Thief right away:

  • 30 Pendulums (One-Time) – complete the Remiem Temple Chocobo Race with four chests collected
  • 99 Pendulums (One-Time) – bribe the Ultima Weapon boss with 2,000,000 Gil (yes, two million). When you bribe an enemy it counts as “beating” that enemy in battle, so once you bribe the Ultima Weapon you won’t be able to re-fight it.

Ultima Weapon can be found deep in the Omega Ruins, so it’s doable, but you’ll need the Gil for it.

Note: all of these methods are late game as well, meaning you can’t really get Master Thief until you’ve gotten access to the Airship and are nearing the Final Dungeon.

Remiem Temple Chocobo Race / FFX HD
Remiem Temple Chocobo Race

Is Master Thief Worth It?

It’s nice to have, but not really worth getting flustered over.

Pendulums are kind of hard to come by no matter what you do. And there’s nothing that’s a rare steal that can’t be obtained in easier ways.

Master Thief is more a quality of life ability than anything – and it’s certainly not worth a slot on any high-end FFX armor build.

If you’re out to get stuff like Remedies and Three Stars, or even Chocobo Feathers and Wings, then Master Thief will help you get them quicker.

But ultimately you won’t lose too much sleep if you don’t have it.

I’d say Master Thief is really more of a status symbol ability than anything.

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Brian Conley

Brian knows more about RPGs than he does world history. Combine with his love of writing and you get somebody who can, and will, go on forever about every nuance of every game he's played.