Welcome to the Shadows
The year is 2060.
The world is changed, some say Awakened.
A lull in the flow of mystical energies has subsided, and
magic has returned to the world. Elves, dwarfs, orks and trolls
have assumed their true form, throwing off their human guise.
Creatures of the wild have changed as well, transforming into
beasts of myth and legend. The traditions and paths of magic
have returned, and shamans and mages have developed their
powers and found a place in the new world. Many aspects of
the Awakening’s touch remain mysterious and unexplained.
Modern society struggles on, despite the odds, in an effort to
assimilate the ways of magic into a technological world.
In the world of 2060, the metroplexes are monsters casting
long shadows. And it’s in the cracks between the giant corporate
structures that shadowrunners find their home. Entire
societies live and die in a black-market underworld, exploited
and abused, yet powerful in their own way. Crime syndicates
such as the Mafia and yakuza have grown explosively as their
networks provide anything that people will buy.
Shadowrunners are the professionals of this culture, where selfsufficiency
is vital. When the megacorps want a job done but
don’t want to dirty their hands, it’s a shadowrun they need,
and they turn to the runners, the only ones who can do it.
Though a shadowrunner’s existence is not listed in any but the
most classified of governmental or corporate databases, the
demand for his or her services is high. Deckers are employed
to slide like a whisper through the visualized databases of giant
corporations, spiriting away the only thing of real value—information.
Street samurai are enforcers-for-hire whose combat
skills and reflexes make them the ultimate urban predator. And
magicians, who possess an ancient gift to wield and shape the
magical energies that now surround the Earth, are much
sought-after, for obvious reasons. Shadowrunners sell their
skills to survive, taking on the illegal and dangerous tasks that
the corps are incapable of performing for themsleves.
In Seattle, the shadows are the deepest and darkest, and
it is here that a shadowrunner’s reputation is made or broken.
So strap on your gun, prepare your spells and grab your
cyberdeck, chummer … it’s time to shadowrun!
-From the Shadowrun 3rd edition Rulebook