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Full Version: Do awakened characters outshine unawakened?
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This title seems general enough to spur conversation. Especially since I don't know exactly what we were arguing before.
This thread is running on the assumption that the awakened characters have had a few hundred karma to sink into initiation, and unawakened are doing other stuff with their karma.

My problem with mages in any game is that they can be powerful, but they can also be rendered helpless as kittens by obscure means. Shadowrun is better about this since mages can invest in armor, body, and guns. On the other hand, Shadowrun awakened characters don't have incredibly high damage, and still have strange weaknesses on top of the things that can hurt unawakened characters.
Somebody delete this. It's the unfortunate product of misusing "backspace" and "enter" on my part.
James McMurray
In previous editions awakened characters could easily outshine unawakened ones after a while. It didn't take them anything to start with a 6 in Magic. The only limit to the size of the Power Focus you could build yourself was time and the GM. Initiating automatically increased your Magic. None of that is true anymore. It is true that high karma magical characters are powerful, but they're not overpowered IMO.

To use the "few hundred" karma as a guideline: that's a healthy boost to a magician's magic, plus several high force foci. The unawakened character can spend that on skill groups and singular skills, ending up with Rating 3 in every single skill he's ever likely to use. Depending on which skills are likely to show up in the campaign, he can sprinkle specializations into all of them. Or he can buy new positive qualities and remove his negatives. Or he can shore up those weak stats he's got, while the mage is still limping along with 1s and 2s in some stuff.

If the campaign is going to go much over ~250 though, the GM might want to institute a cash for karma rule since the unawakened characters will eventually run out of things they want to spend karma on.
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