Designing to Spec: Support Material (Part 4)

So we’ve finished creating Starfinder versions of all the Pf Core Rulebook feats that weren’t already in Starfinder, and we’re spending this week looking at things we may want to add to Starfinder, now that we’ve added such a huge load of feats.

Since the core thing we are trying to do is make it easier for classes to access appropriate feats, since we’re adding more than 120 additional feats to the game, we don’t have to restrict that access to just new feats we created. If there are feats appropriate to a class from previous rulebooks, and a game-balanced way to give them to characters as selections for class features, that can have the same benefit as just focusing on our new feats.

We can also do more than just offer up bonus feats. As a class feature, we can give options to get feats you normally wouldn’t (such as allowing ranks in a skill to substitute for base attack bonus), as long as we don’t grant feats so early the end effect is unbalanced. We can also tie the feats to other class features, to reinforce a previous class concept.

Here are some examples (one mixing old and new feats, one focusing just on pre-existing feats) for the mechanic class.

Mechanic Tricks
These mechanic tricks follow the normal rules for the mechanic trick class feature.

[2nd Level]
You may select these mechanic tricks beginning at 2nd level.

Combat Interface
Select one of the following feats: Ambuscade, Ambush Awareness, Defensive Combat Training, Dodge, Manyshot, Nimble Steps, Power Attack, Precise Shot, Spirited Charge, or Unseat.
If you have a drone, it gains the selected feat. If you have both a drone and an exocortex, at the beginning of each day you decide which has the programmed combat interface, determining if you or your drone gain the bonus feat. Otherwise, you gain the selected feat.

You may select this mechanic hack more than once. Each time, you choose a different feat.

Combat Engineer
Select one of the following feats for which you meet the prerequisites. You can use your ranks in Engineering in place of base attack bonus to fulfill the prerequisites: Adaptive Upgrade, Amplified Glitch, Barricade, Cook Grenade, Double Tap, Far Shot, Grenade Mastery, Hauler, Penetrating Attack, Pull the Pin, Ricochet Grenade.

You may select this mechanic hack more than once. Each time, you choose a different feat.

So, should we cover the rest of the classes next week, or move on to a new topic? Let me know! One great way to do that is as a comment or message through my Patreon! Like all my blog posts, this content was only possible because people joined my Patreon, helping me have the free time to write these things. 🙂

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 February 7, 2020, in Game Design, Starfinder Development and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I would really like to see the rest of the classes handled. I’m finding these columns very educational.

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