There's several layers to this page. If you're joining the Hub for the first time, this page will get you links to the minimums you need to create a character. At the bottom of the entry, we'll also include some links to the House Rules and Archetype Mechanics sections, to help you play your character even better.

Step Two: Getting it down on paper

Technology is a wonderful thing. While we don't have ARO displays (yet) like the 2075 Shadowrun setting, we have stepped away from traditional paper for recording characters. There are two software packages that Runnerhub uses to keep track of characters. When going through /r/HubCharGen, you will need to submit both a PDF of the character sheet, and the original save file. Once your character is approved, you can make the character permanent. Runnerhub does not dictate which software package you use, but you must use one of the two following options. As an aside, the Hub is just about evenly split between the two, so there is no wrong answer (unless it's a third option).


Screenshot of HeroLab (running Shadowrun 5e programming). Product available from Wolf Lair. This image is from the free Demo Version, and is only intended to provide an orientation image to new users.

The first Character Sheet software Runnerhub uses is HeroLab; a simple, straight-forward sheet that is easy to read, easy to use, and licensed by Catalyst Game Labs. The catch is that it's not free. When new information or books come out for the system, there is a minor cost for access to those. However, you can very easily create a character for under $70. (Well, American dollars. Not sure what the exchange rate is right this very second.) This episode of the Arcology Podcast discusses HeroLab.

  • (Runnerhub does not endorse or sponsor the product, but likes to recommend it because it supports Catalyst Game Labs, the company that makes Shadowrun games. Similarly, Runnerhub is not an official sponsor of the Arcology Podcast, but has been interviewed by them.)


Choose wisely. (Your priorities for your character, that is.)

The second software package to create Character Sheets is Chummer: specifically Chummer5. One of the major benefits of Chummer is that it is free. Free to use, free to download the latest release, free to update. However, it is not officially licensed. So if you are looking for specific wording as found in the book, you aren't going to get it. You will, however, get the page number as a reference. Chummer is essentially an open-source file, and fans have kept the software going through a couple of editions now. (Check out this episode of the Arcology Podcast for more details.)

PDF format?

Yeah, runners will need to have their file as a PDF format. Google Drive does funky things to the Chummer save file, and not everybody has a license for HeroLab. So, a PDF copy of your character sheet is essential. (Plus, it simplifies things tremendously.) There's a couple things you can do if you don't have a full (paid) copy of Adobe Acrobat on your computer, or you can download a PDF converter.

  • Cropped screenshot of Chummer5 file. After clicking the print icon, this will pop up. Pick which option you want from here. (If you have a PDF converter, click 'print.')

    The long way (Chummer)
    • Print your character
    • Select "Save as HTML file"
    • Load HTML file to Google (or appropriate browser)
    • Print as PDF from browser


  • The longer way (Chummer)
    • Print your character
    • Select "Save as HTML file"
    • Save to Google Docs
    • Download as PDF
    • Save to Google Drive


  • Download a PDF converter. (I use CutePDF, but you can use whatever one you feel comfortable with. Please note this is not an official endorsement from Runnerhub of a product.)

The Shorter way:

  • HeroLab:
    • Print as PDF

So it's created; now what?

Once you have a software package, play around with it a bit before creating a character. HeroLab's layout is a little confusing at first, but it does get simpler to work with as you continue. Both systems read left to right, but you might find yourself jumping back and forth once in a while. Once you have a concept, though, take a note of the priorities you selected, and in which order, to create your character. You'll need this when you submit your character to /r/HubCharGen.

The Sheetheads on Hubchargen will review your character (regardless of which software you use). They are primarily checking that it is legal. They might offer advice on what to set in your character, and they might not. If you want advice, though, all you have to do is ask. Their job is not to make sure you have fun; the primary job is to make sure you have made a functioning character.

When you submit a character sheet, send a copy of your character's PDF, a link to the online location of the save file, the character name (as the title of the post) and a quick archetype they fall into, and what your priority choices were. (If you are using specialized rules from the various source books, mention that as well. Currently, the 'Hub has a minimum 30 day delay on new sourcebook rules, to make sure they are compatible with gameplay already going on.)

You can't do that! (Can he?)

So, I mentioned before that there would be a collection of rules resources for you. Well, here we are. Rather than type out all the rules, I'm just going to insert a quick list of all the various rules sources, what they are, and how the Hub uses them. (Only in certain instances will the House Rules override the existing rules. Due to ambiguous editing on the part of the writers, the 'Hub issues a ruling on how they interpret certain rules.)

You can find also find this at the Gameplay Resources page, off the Home Page of this Wiki, for future reference.

  • Primary listing of House Rules (from /r/Runnerhub)
  • House Rules collections here on the Wiki
  • Best Practices and suggestions
  • Archetype Mechanix guides (Download the ones you want.)
    • Rigger-specific ruling by the 'Hub
  • Suggested Starting Gear (note: not required, but chock full of goodness)
  • Training notes
  • The Stable of Contacts. These contacts are common and shared. It was easier to have one source for things like IDs, rather than have 900 different ID forgers. (as an example) You can purchase them during Chargen (Character Generation), or after you've been approved. (Be aware that some purchase abilities are only available after you start playing. You can still get the contact, just not the ability associated with purchase.)

Next: Making Backups online

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