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How To Fictional Character Knife Throwing

Oct 2, 2004
Once in a very great while, you will see someone who defied the rules. Skeeter Vaughan did amazing trick throws with both tomahawks and knives. Like Byron Ferguson the archer who shot aspirin tablets in the air. Rare, but does happen once in a lifetime.
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Gold Member
Jul 3, 2019
The most believable combat knife throwing I’ve seen was in John Wick- and that’s saying it all, I think. You know… the scene where they happen to be in a room full of knives, and most of the thrown ones are unsuccessful ricochets? It seems real-ish to me because there’s an aspect of clumsy desperation which I think sells it. I think it’s poking fun at the idea of it, to be honest, and I appreciate that.

there’s the scene in “Under Siege” where Steven hucks a big-ole knife across the kitchen and takes a guy out instantly. I think the only reason that works is because the audience wants to believe the character is that good (80’s machismo), but deep down we know it feels fake (80’s machismo). I think the reality is that throwing your weapon is just a bad idea, particularly if you only have one, and I’m guessing it’s not something most experienced combatants would attempt. Definitely not satisfying if their friends weren’t there to see it, either. (Hey ya’ll, watch this!)

folks have already mentioned that guy who mastered the no-spin technique. If you watch his YouTube videos it’s impressive what he can do, and he’s obviously a firm believer in using it for combat. There is sufficient evidence that if a plank of wood ever attacked him he’d win for sure. I do think no spin is a good technique for casual sport though… it’s easier for me than guessing/calibrating distances and rotations.

Also, I imagine your character is throwing a typical knife, not necessarily a throwing knife. Most common knives aren’t really designed to be thrown. Throwing knives are usually tempered such that they give up hardness for toughness. This is to prevent the blade from breaking due to impacting hard surfaces, like wood. I don’t know how one would practice with their common knife enough to get the feel for throwing it… unless maybe they’re very wealthy.

anyway, good luck with your writing. If you’re going for fantasy don’t worry if something isn’t plausible. Include enough facts and small details to make it seem real, and then make a character who is so enjoyable that readers are willing to suspend disbelief.