Now, I'm not that concerned about "fixing" the mechanics. It is even a bit "realistic" that thrown weapons are sub-optimal in comparison to bows and crossbows. What bothers me is that the lack of decent thrown weapons excludes some popular archetypes, such as the knife thrower or rock hurler.
In fact, thrown weapons work well enough, but they lack a feat as useful as Sharpshooter, for example - one of the best feats in the game.
In order to "fix" thrown weapons we would have to give them a feat with:
* Better reach.
* Faster drawing/throwing.
Easy enough, right?
Thrown Weapon Master
You are expert at hurling weapons at your foes.
Admittedly, throwing three or four javelins against someone who in standing withing 5 feet of you looks a bit silly. If this bothers you (although it is already int he game in the form of Crossbow Expert, you could probably limit the second and third bullet points to weapons that have the light or finesse property.
Another thing 5e seems to be missing is the cool-looking Atlatl.
Here is the 3e version:
An Atlatl (otherwise known as a spear-hurler) is used in the aid of throwing a javelin. Using an Atlatl adds +10 ft to the javelin's range increment, and an amount to the damage roll, as shown on the table above, and a +2 competence bonus to the attack roll.
A 5e version would be something like this:
An Atlatl (otherwise known as a spear-hurler) is used in the aid of throwing a javelin. Using an Atlatl adds +20/+40 ft to the javelin's range, and increases its damage to 1d8.
Enough to turn the javelin into a really fearsome weapon!
And, finally, one of the most "exotic" weapons in the list... the net!
|Net||1 gp||—||5/15||3 lb.||thrown, special|
Retraining a creature is a pretty powerful:
A restrained creature’s speed becomes 0, and it can’t benefit from any bonus to its speed. Attack rolls against the creature have advantage, and the creature’s Attack rolls have disadvantage. The creature has disadvantage on Dexterity saving throws.
The use of a net as a dueling weapon is the mark of the Retiarius, picured above.
Since the trident is such a useless weapon in 5e, is just too tempting to fix the two things at once:
You are trained in the gladiatorial art of fighting with trident and net.
The first bullet point could be done in reverse (i.e., use a bonus action to attack with a net), although I'm wary of giving advantage to every attack after that. The bonus damage is added both to mitigate the cost of diminishing the number of possible attacks and to make the feat useful in different circumstances.
You might notice that if you keep your foe at 10 feet distance, you can attack with your trident... but it can't move to attack back until it gets rid of the net!
Sounds like an awesome fighting style to me!