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Basic Information

Shuriken is a Japanese term for a variety of small thrown weapons used primarily for harrassing attacks or for distractions in melee.

Despite being popularly perceived as throwing stars, shuriken can also be disc shaped, needle like or like small knives.

Due to their low mass, these are usually non-lethal and more annoying than dangerous - although they could be (and often were) loaded with poisons to enhance their effectiveness. Their ability to penetrate armour is negligible and they can even be deflected by heavy clothing, requiring a good aim or considerable luck from the user.

Like many thrown weapons, some designs of shuriken can also be used in close combat as fist loads (subject to having blunt parts that they can be easily gripped by).

For something a little larger, consider a chakram.


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • These appear in a variety of RPGs, generally with massively overstated effectiveness. There are a variety of reasons that they were never particularly widespread, one of which being that they are not that impressive as a weapon.
  • Like many Eastern weapons they are much mythologised and, alongside a mail-order katana, form a key part of the armament of mall ninjas and similar walts.
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