Throwing a Melee "Dagger"

What, if any, are the obstacle penalties for throwing a melee dagger (knife) as opposed to using a throwing dagger?

We have always purchased run of the mill arms for five points and then charged an extra three points to make them balanced for throwing (basically the cost of purchasing run of the mill arms and throwing weapons) but lately I’ve been wondering if that is even necessary.

How do others do this?

Throwing a non-throwing knife is basically indistinguishable from throwing an oddly-shaped small rock. You can’t control its tumbling, really. You’re probably not going to hit anyone with the sharp bit. It’s not at all aerodynamic. There’s a reason throwing knives look and feel so very different.

This is a bit like asking about throwing a spear (as described in BWG). You can, but you really don’t. A spear and a javelin are not the same weapon.

I disagree, every knife has a balance point, and like any thrown object, part of the skill in throwing is instinctively finding that balance point.
As far as whether or not they hit point or pummel first, isn’t that determined by the DoF (incidental would be a glancing blow while a superb would be the best you can get).
The main difference between a Throwing Knife and a Fighting Knife is in the blade design.
Throwing blades are balanced as such and are designed to penetrate rather than slice or dice the target. They are usually thinner than other blades and are, for the most part, quite concealable.
Fighting blades are sturdier, designed to penetrate as well as slice and dice the target.
The big difference in BWG terms (to me, anyways) is the number you carry.
If you spend 5rps. for “daggers” (meaning run of the mill, double edge fighting knives) you get to have what you can conceivably carry (one in each boot, two on your belt, whatever). If you spend 3 rps. on throwing knives you get a dozen or so (as the ammunition ammount isn’t specified, they are treated like arrows)
So far, to keep from having any imagined “rule issues” we have rulled that any weapons you wish to be able to throw (spear, knife, club, ect) must be purchased as both to retain the privileges of both catagories.
Once purchased as such, the benefits then transfer to any similar weapons you run across or find.
I was just wondering if, rules wise, such a requirement is even needed.

Throwing knives are specifically designed for throwing. Even the ones most similar in designs to normal daggers are quite different- notably the handles tend to be less obtrusive (crossguards are not wanted, and the grip needs not be so tight). They were typically a single piece of steel, whereas seaxes and daggers could have wood or bone handles, or leather wrappings. lets not start on the more African throwing knife designs, which are best summed up as “blades everywhere”.

Similarly spears are either solid, sturdy and great for (fighting/thrusting), or have properties why make them aerodynamic and suited for throwing. In Homer’s Iliad, the warriors had two throwing spears and one fighting spear, the two types being qualitatively different; even using a different word (like spear and javelin) to refer to the two. Principes and triarii (before the principes got given the gladius) fought with the pilum- a throwing spear which lost its tip- before switching to a short stabbing spear (hasta).

The tradition of throwing spears falls out of favour during the middle ages, although kept up by specialist units. They continue to be divided into roughly two categories- throwing (which are pretty much based on the pilus) or melee (which change a lot, getting longer or getting winged heads). Spears gradually transition into polearms and pikes, to suit the needs of the times.

Similarly, throughout different cultures if there are spears for throwing and fighting, they get different names. As an example, the japanese yari was not thrown and they had no ranged spear users. The tepoztopilli used by the Aztecs was the height a man and had an obsidian head, their throwing spears were shorted and often had obsidian worked into the sides.

Historically all well and good, but I have thrown hunting knives, throwing knives, daggers, darts, and shurikens of various shapes and sizes, usually within a two to three inches grouping so I know from first hand experience that such things are possible (sorry, I never got around to spears), and as BWG is a fantasy roll playing game there are literally more things within our games then in historical philosophy.
The question is, how to simulate it game wise?

At the very least “without tools” double Obstacle penalty (Ob 4). Bearing in mind that that’s only an extra +1 Ob more difficult than a poor quality throwing weapon. I would probably also subtract 1 from the IMS and DoF.

I would think that this is entirely up to the setting.

Martial Arts masters? Kill Bill? Yeah, you can throw daggers. I would hope G8 throwing bad-ass warrior monks and unstoppable assassins with a thirst for vengeance would be able to throw some daggers with deadly accuracy.

Generic fantasy setting? No, you can’t throw daggers. They aren’t made to be thrown, no matter how much you would like to throw them. There is a good reason for this; why take 1 knife that you can stab or throw with decently when you could have 8 throwing knives that work excellently and a dagger that works excellently.

Its allll based on setting. Everything in BW is, really.

That is why we were imposing the +3 rps. if you wanted to be able to throw your melee weapons (daggers, clubs, and spears) to account for the dual purpose of the weaponry (which has worked out fine so far), I was wondering if this added cost is even needed as I haven’t been able to find anything in book restricting the use of melee weapons as throwing weapons.(not even an obstacle penalty).

What’s restricting the use is that melee weapons are not ranged weapons. They’re different weapons!

Larkin, what I’m trying to say is, just have them buy both instead of one that can do the others job for the price of both. It is mechanically better and historically more accurate.

In both books and movies we often have the hero fighting with his or her daggers, turn to see an archer or gunman taking aim and then drop them with a well thrown dagger.
The hero doesn’t sheath his melee dagger, draw his throwing knife, and then kill his opponent, he uses the weapon he is already holding, or draws the same knife that has already been established in prior scenes as a melee weapon and throws that.
Sure, if your big on throwing knives by all means purchase throwing knives in burning, you’ll have all you need (or at least a good supply).
If you have the Throwing skill, you can throw pretty much anything with a certain amount of accuracy (rocks, pottery, knives, plates, ect.) The only limit being what you can lift, and how far you can throw it.
There isn’t anything in RaW that says you cannot throw you melee dagger, although it would be reasonable to impose the same obstacles in melee as additional obstacles to the average throwing knife so that a run of the mill knife (melee obstacle 1) gets a +1 Ob when thrown (Ob 3), an inferior knife (melee obstacle 2) gets a +2 Ob when thrown (Ob 4) and a superior knife (melee obstacle1) gets a +1 Ob when thrown (Ob 3), but retains its +1 balance die, making it almost as good as those 12 rps. Superior Throwing Knives (Ob 2, +1 balance die).

Of course the same would hold true in reverse, adding a +2 Ob penalty if you had your throwing knife drawn when suddenly forced into a melee situation (Ob3).

Books and movies are not bound by realism. Neither are roleplaying games, of course, but BWG actually tries fairly hard where combat is concerned.

Your suggested obstacles are fine, I think. Just consider that by RAW there’s nothing stopping you from chucking your sword at someone. What obstacle penalty would you assign for that? What damage code? I’d argue that despite being a sharp, dangerous weapon a sword is probably less dangerous when thrown than a rock. It’s awkward, it’s not going to hit well, and it’s not going to go far or fast.

I would probably add the same penalties the weapon would receive if it had lost the positioning test against a dagger, increasing the obstacle by an additional 1 to 3 points.
Another thing that could be used to keep it in line is using melee I/M/S even when the weapon is thrown, without the DoF for throwing weapons in play, even a master would be hard pressed to get a mark damage by throwing a RotM longsword (B6 Throwing vs. an obstacle 4 to hit (2 for throwing, plus 1 for RotM weapon, plus 1 for weapon length penalty) Hope he’s got some artha to burn.

Here’s another question along the same lines.
An ambidextrous assassin has an instinct draw two blades as he has Two Fisted Fighter Training (all of this blades are balanced for throwing).
If he throws one of his blades does he still secede the advantage? (Even though he is still armed), or would he retain the advantage until he had thrown the other dagger too? (Thus becomming unarmed).