Revised Icon Theme, for Battles of the Bands in Starfinder

So, yesterday I presented a reskinned version of the starship vehicle chase rules in Starfinder for use in Battle of the Bands contests. It works great. There’s just one issue.

Icons don’t have any real edge winning Battles of the bands with these rules.

Now, sure, the Icon theme might not be for musical/stage performers specifically, And they DO get a +1 bonus to their selected Profession skill, so that’s a small edge.

But if a campaign is REALLY going to use Battles of the Bands as often as, say, starship combat, there really ought to be a theme that makes you better at it.

So, here’s a revised Icon, tied into yesterday’s rules. Or, if you prefer, you can use this as a Jukebox Hero, Rock God, Pop Star, or Stage Diva theme, and leave Icon alone.

(Insert your character here)

Revised Icon

You’re going to be a Superstar, if you aren’t one already.

Theme Knowledge

Choose one of the following Profession skills – dancer, musician, orator, poet, video personality, electrician, vidgamer, or manager. You are hooked deeply into the culture of your iconic profession. You gain a +1 bonus to checks with your chosen Profession skill. Culture also becomes a class skill for you, though if it is a class skill from the class you take at 1st level, you instead gain a +1 bonus to Culture checks.

When you are in a Battle of the Bands contest, your band’s Musical Armor Class increases by +1, and you and all other members of the band receive a +2 enhancement bonus to all Perform Phase skill checks.

In addition, you gain an ability adjustment of +1 to Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma at character creation (whichever is tied to the Profession skill you selected).

Under Pressure (6th)

Performing is in your blood, and the harder things get, the better you perform. When you are not at full Stamina Points, or are down to 3 or fewer Resolve points, you gain a +2 circumstance bonus to skill checks with skill checks for your Profession associated with this theme. When performing (taking at least a standard action each round to make an appropriate Profession check, or participating in a Battle of the Bands), you gain a +2 circumstance bonus to saving throws against any effect that would prevent you from continuing your performance.

The Show Must Go On (12th)

You can keep on performing even while aiding you allies, keeping the equipment working, or even shooting at music-killing raith phantoms. During a Battle of the Bands, you can take a single action in the Perform Phase or Combat phase as a swift action (as long as it is normally a standard action or less), as long as you take no other action during that phase.

Holding Out for a Hero (18th)

The thrill of a great performance energizes you, whether it’s yours or someone else’s. The first two times each day you are present when someone rolls a natural 20 on a Profession check for some kind of performance check (for a Battle of the bands, or anything else), you recover 1 Resolve Point. If you take 20 on an appropriate Profession check, this counts as a natural 20 that day for purposes of this theme ability.


This writing is work, and it takes time from my other paying projects. If you got any use out of this article, or have enjoyed any of my content, please consider supporting my Patreon to cover the cost of my doing it. You can join for the cost of a cup of coffee a month.

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 September 3, 2021, in Game Design, Starfinder Development and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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