The Intimidate skill allows a character to use the Demoralize Opponent action in combat, which says (emphasis mine):
You can also use Intimidate to weaken an opponent’s resolve in combat. To do so, make an Intimidate check opposed by the target’s modified level check (see above). If you win, the target becomes shaken for 1 round. A shaken character takes a -2 penalty on attack rolls, ability checks, and saving throws. You can intimidate only an opponent that you threaten in melee combat and that can see you.
A straightforward reading of the above suggests that you can avoid being demoralized by closing your eyes. No rules for doing so are laid out in the description of the Intimidate skill, but the SRD's section on gaze attacks does have rules for averting or closing your eyes to avoid ill effects:
An opponent can avert his eyes from the creature’s face, looking at the creature’s body, watching its shadow, or tracking the creature in a reflective surface. Each round, the opponent has a 50% chance of not having to make a saving throw. The creature with the gaze attack gains concealment relative to the opponent. An opponent can shut his eyes, turn his back on the creature, or wear a blindfold. In these cases, the opponent does not need to make a saving throw. The creature with the gaze attack gains total concealment relative to the opponent.
However, these rules are a bit vague, leaving me with questions about how closing your eyes would work against the Demoralize Opponent action:
- Does this strategy work at all? Can you, in fact, protect yourself from being intimidated by closing your eyes?
- What type of action is it to close or open your eyes?
- Can you open your eyes at the beginning of each of your turns and close them at the end of each of your turns, rendering yourself immune to intimidation during your opponent's turn but avoiding the miss chance for blindness during your own turns?
This question was inspired by an old arena match in which my opponent used this strategy, which was ruled to work at the time, but the ruling was pretty spur-of-the-moment, so I'm curious what the stack thinks.