When borrowing, you will attempt to steal up to 25-50 times your experience level gold from the monster.
You obviously must have hands to steal, and your encumbrance must be less than strained. There must be a monster at the square you specify, but it is not necessary for you to be able to detect the monster. If the monster is not tame there is only a chance of success.
Your chance of success is based on your dexterity and if you are a rogue or not. There is no benefit from polymorphing into a monster that is able to steal items through attacks, e.g. a nymph or leprechaun. The base chance of success is 5%, plus your level times 2 if you are a rogue. Your dexterity bonus is your dexterity minus 10 if below 10, your dexterity minus 14 if above 14, and 0 otherwise. This bonus is multiplied by 3 if you are a rogue and is added to your chance. There are penalties based on the gloves, shield, and body armor you are wearing:
Shield: -10 if wearing any shield
Gloves: +5 if no gloves, +0 for gauntlets of dexterity, -5 for any other gloves
body armor: Based on weight. No armor is +0
- base is +10 at wt<75. Every 50 units above this is -5, to a maximum penalty at 375 units (-25)
The chance is finally restricted to between 5% and 95%. Failing to steal from a peaceful monster will anger it. Successfully stealing from a non-tame monster will also exercise dexterity.
You failed to steal anything.
You used the #borrow command on a target, but failed the success roll.
I don't see anybody to rob there!
You used the #borrow command on a space that didn't have a monster.
You search around but don't find anything.
You attempted to #borrow while engulfed.
You don't find anything to steal.
The monster did not have any gold to steal.