Developing To Spec: Part 8 -Blind and Bleeding

This is Part Eight of a series of articles looking at creating a set of Starfinder feats under specific constraints. (Which is continued in section b here, and section c here). The point of these is to offer practical examples of how I approach developing and writing supplemental rules for tabletop RPGs. Rather than just blather on about things as I think of them, I go over issues as I encounter them in a real-world example.

The goal of this project is to create the “Missing Starfinder Legacy Feats,” a Starfinder-compatible version of every feat in the PF core rulebook that doesn’t have an SF match. (We discussed the impact of having to do that, whether that’s a good idea or not, in Part One.)

You can find previous entries here — Part OnePart TwoPart ThreePart FourPart FivePart Six, Part Seven — or just the finished feats (as they are written) here.

While we were going through the PF core rulebook feats in order, when we ran into the first critical feat, we paused in Part Seven to look at all of those as a whole, and we tackled Critical Focus and Critical Mastery. Now, for the rest of this week, we can just write up the critical feats themselves, starting with Bleeding Critical and Blinding Critical.

Bleed criticals are already built into some weapons, and can be added with the bleeding weapon fusion, so we want to make sure a character who takes the Bleeding Critical feat doesn’t regret having a weapon that also has bleed — it’s thematically on point for the character to do so, in fact. Since there aren’t any existing critical hit effects that blind in Starfinder, and being blinded in Starfinder isn’t any worse than being blinded in PF, we can translate the Blinding Critical feat more directly, though still matching how Starfinder handles having multiple critical hit effects and making sure there’s a reasonable list of spells that can remove the blindness.

Your critical hits cause opponents to bleed profusely.
Prerequisites: Critical Focus, base attack bonus +11.
Benefit: You can add the bleeding critical hit effect to any attack you make. The bleed effect does 1d6 damage per round, +1d6 per 5 item levels of the weapon used, or per 2 spell levels if the attack is a spell effect, or +1d6 per 5 character levels if the attack is not made with a weapon or spell.
If the attack already had a bleed critical hit effect, you may instead use the bleed that does more damage (either the attack’s normal bleed effect, or the one granted by this feat) and increase the amount of that effect’s bleed damage by +1d6.
If the attack already has a non-bleed critical hit effect, when you score a critical hit you may apply its normal critical hit effect or the effect from this feat, but not both.

Your critical hits blind your opponents.
Prerequisites: Critical Focus, base attack bonus +15.
Benefit: Whenever you score a critical hit, your opponent is permanently blinded. A successful Fortitude save reduces this to dazzled for 1d4 rounds. The DC of this Fortitude save is equal to 10 + half your base attack bonus + your key ability score modifier. This feat has no effect on creatures that do not rely on eyes for sight or creatures with more than two eyes (although multiple critical hits might cause blindness, at the GM’s discretion). Blindness can be cured by regenerateremove condition (greater), or any spell or effect which is capable of restoring life to the dead.

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About Owen K.C. Stephens

Owen K.C. Stephens Owen Kirker Clifford Stephens is a full-time ttRPG Writer, designer, developer, publisher, and consultant. He's the publisher for Rogue Genius Games, and has served as the Starfinder Design Lead for Paizo Publishing, the Freeport and Pathfinder RPG developer for Green Ronin, a developer for Rite Publishing, and the Editor-in-Chief for Evil Genius Games. Owen has written game material for numerous other companies, including Wizards of the Coast, Kobold Press, White Wolf, Steve Jackson Games and Upper Deck. He also consults, freelances, and in the off season, sleeps. He has a Pateon which supports his online work. You can find it at

Posted on October 23, 2019, in Game Design, Pathfinder Development, Starfinder Development and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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