When you have more time to talk about games, than actually play them.
Some of the best games to play involve stealing something. Fun can be had while you are taking money, guns, drugs or all of the above. It can be the whole point of a game or a choice that can get you into trouble.
The great thing about games with a steal mechanic is that it often allows you to choose between doing it stealthy or by force. Getting in and out without anyone noticing can be fun, but so can escaping with your life barely intact.
Grand Theft Auto games have the act of stealing cars right in the name. The ironic thing is that most of the GTA games are not about taking cars, at all. They have a lot more to do with heists or other crimes.
Assassin’s Creed games revolve around stealing an alien artifact that should not be in the hands of the enemy Templars. There’s a whole lot of assassination, but the main goal of the game is to get your grubby hands on an artifact.
Classic games like Skyrim give you the choice to choose a path as a thief or skip stealing altogether. You can choose to join the thief’s guild to have a fun time nicking trinkets and valuables. It’s a fun line of missions that you don’t want to miss out on, even if it waits for a second playthrough.
The classic Thief game really made the stealth and silent kills popular for the games that came after it. Literally sticking to shadows was a big game mechanic that helped raise the tension of the the more action packed FPS games during that time.