[RPG] Can a rogue use sneak attack with weapons that have the thrown property even if they are not thrown


For weapons like the spear that have the Thrown property, can a Rogue use sneak attack with them?
Thrown is considered a ranged attack and Sneak Attack specifies that "The attack must use a finesse or ranged weapon."
Does this mean a rogue could potentially apply Sneak Attack to an attack using a spear as it is technically a ranged weapon? If so, would this also work if you were using the spear in melee?

Best Answer

Sneak Attack does not work with melee weapons that have the thrown property, but lack the finesse property

The Rogue's Sneak Attack feature states:

The attack must use a finesse or a ranged weapon.

A melee weapon cannot simultaneously be a ranged weapon, because as the Weapons section (PHB, p146) states:

Every weapon is classified as either melee or ranged.

In fact, a weapon must be listed in either the Simple or Martial Ranged Weapons tables to be considered a ranged weapon.

Moreover, the thrown property (PHB, p146) does not turn a melee weapon into a ranged weapon. It states:

If a weapon has the thrown property, you can throw the weapon to make a ranged attack. If the weapon is a melee weapon, you use the same ability modifier for that attack roll and damage roll that you would use for a melee attack with the weapon. For example, if you throw a handaxe, you use your Strength, but if you throw a dagger, you can use either your Strength or your Dexterity, since the dagger has the finesse property.

Making a ranged attack does not imply using a ranged weapon.

The thrown property allows you to make a ranged attack by throwing the melee weapon despite it being a melee weapon.

Whether or not you throw a melee weapon does not matter. If it lacks the finesse property, then it won't work with Sneak Attack.