This next step in the character creation process is finalizing the list of qualities the character will have at the beginning of a Shadowrun campaign. Qualities help round out your character’s personality while also providing a range of benefits or penalties. There are two types of Qualities—Positive Qualities, which provide gameplay bonuses and require an expenditure of Karma; and Negative Qualities, which impose gameplay penalties but also give bonus Karma the player can spend in other areas.
As mentioned earlier, the character starts the character creation process with 25 Karma, and some of that can be spent to buy Qualities. Players can spend all of it, some of it, or none of it based on what they want their character to have and how much Karma they want to save for later. Additionally, at creation characters can only possess at most 25 Karma worth of Positive Qualities and 25 Karma worth of Negative Qualities. After character creation, Positive Qualities can be purchased during game play, while Negative Qualities may be awarded to the character by the gamemaster based on events that take place in game. Negative Qualities can be bought off using Karma during game play. See Character Advancement rules (p. 103) for more about purchasing Positive Qualities or buying off Negative ones.
When purchasing a Positive or Negative quality, note the quality on the character sheet along with any bonuses or negative modifiers to skills in parentheses next to the appropriate skills or attributes.