Characters

If it were possible for one runner to do everything to please the Mr. Johnsons who fund the contracts shadowrunners take on, life would be a piece of cake. In reality, the difficulty of the missions requires a team of people, each with their own specialties. Below are several that can be found in the world of Shadowrun: Awakened; however, things are rarely so clear-cut. Noone can be captured in one word or job; these are just foundations to support the many characters you will see in the shadows.

Diversity of skill is often due to necessity -- a hacker may be the master of virtual reality, but he better be able to handle himself should he be traced and find some very real bullets heading his way. It can be reassuring to have the power of magic, but it's no replacement for a few hundred rounds of ammo. Crafting a character means finding a strategy. Just be sure you don't spread yourself thin, lest you find yourself spread out on the pavement...

Adepts

If you're looking for that extra "boost" when cracking someone's skull open, follow the path of an adept and use magic to supplement your abilities. While a magician will affect others using magic, you use magic to affect yourself. Your powers always remain active, unlike a mage's, but you do face more restrictive limits on the number you can master. Decrease your reaction time with firearms, run so fast you can go up walls, and throw projectiles with such power they take heads off.

"Sometimes I feel like the only guy in the shadows who bleeds red when you cut him. In a business where flesh is so often written of as a liability, I walk a different path. My prowess isn't something you buy, though I do lease at competitive rates. My skills weren't installed nor need regular maintenance; they are the product of a lifetime of dedication. I don't hold my opponent's reliance on tech against them, though I have made those that underestimate the naked fist very sorry."

Hackers

Elf Hacker

If your IQ is greater than your weight, you may wish to consider becoming a hacker and breaking into computer systems and networks, with little danger to your frail physique. Your goal is to access anything and everything connected to the Matrix, regardless of whether the owner intended you to or not. Hack a bank and transfer the funds needed to purchase the equipment your chummers need for the run. Break into a Lone Star database and erase criminal records to allow for free movement during and after a mission. Firewalls may slow you down, encryption may frustrate you, but nothing will stand in your way. Get the intel your team needs to succeed.

"Runnin' a datasteal? I can do that. Need someone to open doors on the way in? Null sheen. The time I don't spend cruising the matrix to watch my team's back, I spend working on my shiny toys. Code doesn't write itself you know. When you need to be in the know, you come to me. When you need to get something off your hands, you come to me. The shadows extend deep into the wireless world and in there, I'm your man."

Mage

Human Mage

Reality is an equation that, if solved correctly, yields infinite power. All you need is a disciplined mind to unlock the true potential of magic, is yours strong enough? Stir things up with spells and spirits from the astral plane and read people's emotions through astral perception. People loaded with armor against bullets will be ripe targets for your spells. However, the knife cuts both ways, your teammates will also need your protection against rival magicians and spirits.

"Just as physics dictates the laws of reality, similar laws apply to magic and astral space; you just need to appreciate the beautiful formulae. Sorcery does not violate the laws of thermodynamics; it extends them. The science of conjuring isn't the manifestation of hokey religions or ghosts; it is the biological study of another dimension. Latest statistics indicate that only one percent of the population is born with magical potential. Of the myriad possibilities, as little as one third can understand the complexity required to be a hermetic mage, such as myself. Perhaps only four in ten might reach the full mastery of both spirits and spells. I may not be exactly one in a million, but I guarantee the rarity of my gifts justify my compensation."

Riggers

Dwarf Rigger

If you'd rather do without your house than your car, then take on the role of a rigger with the technological advantages available to grant you maximum control over vehicles and drones. You are the ultimate transporter. While getting in and out without being detected would be the ideal situation, that's not always the case. You may be called upon to put the "pedal to the metal" and bail your fellow runners out of a botched mission or lose their pursuers after a successful one. While your primary role is a driver, you also provide fire support when needed and design automated drones that provide that additional "oomph" needed during tough pursuits. You musttake the time to maintain and repair your vehicles between missions. Nothing's more embarassing for a rigger than having everyone pile in the seats, only to find that the car won't start.

"This here's the deal: I drive, you ride. It ain't easy givin' up control. I understand. I trust ya'll do the shootin'; trust me to get you there to do it. Remember, I be riskin' my pride and joy here. She seen a lot of action. I've redone paint, filled bullet holes, and replaced more tires than I care to count. I get plumb fearful before every run, wonderin' if this be the night I'll need a new interior. Hope you pay no never mind to my up front fee. Don't much resemble a taxi cab, so don't treat me like none."

Shaman

Every creature and crevice in the world holds magical potential; it is all around you. Call on the assistance of spirits or assault your enemies with spells. Keep in mind that you act as the lookout for paranormal traps and enemies residing in the astral plane that those magically deficient folks can't even see. You'll attract plenty of attention in meatspace with your powers, though, most of it unwanted. Be sure you've got plenty of partners with brute force to back you up, even if they don't share your respect for the natural world.

"I know there are a lot of stereotypes about magic users out there. Either we're all eggheads who think magic is a math problem or we're injuns with peace pipes and rain sticks. I am more connected to mother earth than your average runner, but with all the metal in their heads these days, who isn't? I don't think of myself as commanding a force from another world so much as cooperating with the potential all around us. I believe that anyone could do what I do if they just opened their eyes. Now, if you'd be so kind, let's talk about you opening your wallet."

Street Samurai

Ork Samurai

Do you enjoy punching people in the face? Use technology to boost your performance in physical combat as a street samurai and watch your opponents fall to the ground in agony. Street Samurais focus primarily on combat and as such are a nuyen a dozen. Move beyond mere thuggery and get the missions you crave by learning a specialty in mechanics, electronics, biotechnology, demolition, or even the paranatural.

"What's the difference between me and your average gunslinger, bounty hunter, ganger, or thug? I have a code. It says I keep my guns loaded, my sword sharp, and my word to the letter. Many in the plex think a couple mods and a disregard for human life make you a street sam. That's not true. I may break the law and I may cut down my enemies, but they always knew someone was carrying a bullet for them. I'm not here because I'm a sadist, I'm here because you have a job and I have my honor on the line."

Technomancer

Human Technomancer

Every kid with a deck and a bad attitude thinks he's a hacker, but they don't know the Matrix like you do. They haven't seen the data stream unaided by a machine; they see it with only their eyes, not with their minds. You can hack machines wirelessly, unaided by clumsy technology, examining and altering their code. They aren't just metal, they're living digital life. The Matrix is not just your domain; it's your mother, your brother, and your life.

"I remember the first time I dove into the Matrix. I felt like a fish swimming in the ocean after a lifetime on land. That was when I found out I was special. I find it hard to sleep through the night without the hum of the Matrix in my mind. I find it hard to go through the day face-to-face with only people. I feel more at home with machines. They aren't greedy, they aren't vain. They're just as they are made; no more, no less. Today everything is constructed by or connected to machines and I can change them with a thought. You better count my payment carefully, I would hate to have to change how your bank's machines work."

Mellis