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Bestiaforma mutabilis


Shapeshifters are sapient paranormal animals with the ability to change forms, often (but not always) into a metahuman form.


Bear Shapeshifter

Shapeshifters are sapient animals who can transform into other forms, typically a metahuman form capable of speech and socialization with metahuman society as a whole. Shapeshifters often prefer to operate at night and often during the full moon, but despite myths to the contrary, they are not locked into these cycles [1] [2]. Despite differences between legends and reality, some claim that ancient werewolf myths prove the existence of pre-Awakened shapeshifters, though no hard evidence has yet been uncovered [3].

Shapeshifters are most often found in the habitat associated with their animal form (for example, Leopard shapeshifters are usually found in Africa), though as sapient beings they can and do travel well away from their homelands [1] [2]. Sentient non-metahuman species taken together constitute less than 2 percent of the global population and are usually viewed with a mixture of awe, fascination, fear and suspicion if not outright hostility by common metahumanity [4].


In animal form, shapeshifters tend to be larger than average for their species and often have unusual or dramatic coloration.[1] [2] [5]. They are born with the ability to communicate with normal animals of its breed while in animal form, but it cannot speak or use Social skills [6] [7].

In metahuman form, shapeshifters are usually more attractive than others of its metatype, but often have some identifying features associated with its animal form, such as vertical pupils or angular features. Shapeshifters do not shed their animal hide when transforming into a human [1] [2]. Shapeshifters must be taught a metahuman language, it is not gained inherently[7].

Shapeshifters breed according to the season of their animal form [1] [2] and are believed to interbreed with their mundane kin [8]. It is unclear whether shapeshifters can produce offspring with metahumans and, if so, can transfer certain shapeshifters genes to metahuman lineages [9]. Shapeshifters are born in litters of a size appropriate to their animal form and their litter-mates may or may not be shapeshifters as well [2]. Shapeshifters physically mature at the same rate as their non-shapeshifting kin but shapeshifter parents often nurse and nuture their shapeshifting offspring longer than their mundane offspring, likely to give the cub longer to develop their mature cognitive functions. There is some anecdotal evidence to support the idea that adolescent shapeshifters who do not receive socialization and physical contact during infancy may have developmental problems as adults [8].

Most shapeshifters are carnivorous, though there are certainly exceptions and they have no difficulty eating the normal metahuman range of food [1] [2]. Shapeshifters do not have the correct neural physiological to access the virtual reality of the Matrix and must access it in tortoise mode. As of 2061, megacorps are racing to be the first to develop usable Matrix interfaces for sentient non-metahumans, including shapeshifters [10]. Generic organs are not available to shapeshifters and attempts to implant them will fail [11].

The Red Mage Bali Randhawa teaches that all who shapeshift from animal to metahuman or reverse are using magic from the Domain of Red to do so [12].


  • Bogies or Baskerville Hounds are sometimes misidentified as lupine shapeshifters [13].
  • Crawler, a Skimmer (smuggler) in Manhattan, is often misidentified as a rat shapeshifter because of her appearance and rat-like mannerisms [14].
  • Drakes are metahumans able to assume a dracoform, not a paranatural animal capable of shifting into a metahuman and are, therefore, not considered shapeshifters [15].
  • Free Spirits with Animal Form appear as a stronger and larger version of the animal and look similar to a Shapeshifter in their animal form [16].
  • The Gabriel Hound can shapeshift to some limited extent, taking on a humanoid form and face, though it cannot become a full biped or pass close examination. [17].
  • The Kludde can transform between canine, avian and feline forms. They don't have regeneration, have a minor allergy to sunlight but not to silver, and have no metahuman form. Instead, they have powers like Alienation, Fear, and Desire Reflection [18][19].
  • Snow Tiger, a popular decker from Hong Kong, has a shapeshifting silver-white tiger avatar in the Matrix as of 2061 [20].
  • The Talis Cat was misidentified as a cheetah shapeshifter until 2049 [21].

Allergy to Silver[]

Most shapeshifters are severely allergic to silver [1] [2]. Merely touching silver causes burns and wounds caused by weapons coated in silver, heal at a much slower rate as compared to other types of wounds [22].

Dual Natured[]

Shapeshifters are dual natured, meaning they exist in both the Astral world and the physical world simultaneously. In Astral Space, the shapeshifter's alternate form is always visible when using Astral Perception [1] [2] and Aura Reading [23].

Many shapeshifters are magically active and magic potential is innate in all shapeshifters [1] [2]. Shapeshifter shamans are relatively common among them and they generally follow the totem animal of their breed. They are noted for having a strong and unshakable connection to their totem animal, unlike their metahuman counterparts [24]. Some claim that tests have been conducted using sperm from male shapeshifters in an attempt to consistently create an Awakened metahuman [25].


Shapeshifters are capable of regeneration [1] [2], though some can only regenerate to a limited degree while in animal form and heal normally in metahuman form. Both types of regeneration result in the forcible rejection of implants as soon as they shift to their animal form [26].

Shapeshifter Variations[]

  • Alligator: Alligator shapeshifters are known to inhabit the rivers of South America [27].
  • Anaconda: Anaconda shapeshifters have a greenish-brown skin coloring with a pattern of black, oval spots in animal form. They are found in South America, particularly in what was once Columbia, where they are known to assist members of GreenWar in fighting against Aztlan occupation [27] [28].
  • Bovine: Cows, bison, buffalo, brahmin and similar animals around the world fall into this category. In metahuman form, they often have broad noses with flaring nostrils and broad shoulders [5].
  • Canine: Large domestic breeds of dogs have sometimes bred shapeshifters. As with their lupine brethren, enlarged canine teeth, extensive body hair and a resemblance to their breed are visible in their metahuman form [5]. Called Malakat in the Philippines, in human form they have enlarged canine teeth. [29].
  • Coyote: Coyote shapeshifters are found in Aztlan and, presumably, elsewhere in North America [30].
  • Cervine: A herd of deer shapeshifters are known to inhabit the Cypress Hills region of the Algonkian-Manitou Council as recently as 2073 [31].
  • Dolphin: Dolphin shapeshifters are known to inhabit the rivers of South America [27].
  • Dingo: There are unconfirmed rumors of Dingo shapeshifters living in the wilds of Australia [32].
  • Equine: Horse shifters are common in Europe [33]. In metahuman form, they often have a drawn-out chin and their hairline frequently extends down between the shoulder blades, much like a mane [5].
  • Falconine: Eagle shapeshifters are found throughout Europe and North America, eagle shifters commonly use magic and are especially good at dealing with sky spirits. In human form, they have sharp features and dark eyes. Eagle shifters are allergic to gold, not silver [34] [35]. Falconine shifters often exhibit claustrophobia and may also include vulture, falcon and hawk breeds [5].
  • Heron: Common in Europe [33].
  • Hog/Pig: Called Pugot in the Philippines, in human form they have extremely thick, hard fingernails [29].
  • Jackal: There are rumors of jackal shapeshifters in North Africa and southern Asia, but there have been no confirmed sightings as of 2062 [36].
  • Jaguar: Jaguar (Puma) shapeshifters tend to be solitary and defend their territory against other jaguars (shapeshifters or mundane). A male's territory tends to be two or three times the size of a female's and while the male is willing to allow his territory to overlap with a female's, two males will fight to drive the other away or kill them. The only real socialization between shapeshifter jaguars is between a mother and her cubs while she's rearing them [37]. They are more likely to be encountered in public than other shapeshifters in Aztlan [30]. They are also known to be found in Amazonia, where they operate as members of the intelligence services [38]. Jaguar shapeshifters retain the slit-like iris and reflective layer in their eyes [35].
  • Leopard: Leopard shapeshifters are most commonly found in Malaysia, sub-Sarahan Africa and West Africa (where they are called Wareks). They are the most common shapeshifters on the continent of Africa. In human form, they often possess spotted markings on their skin similar to freckles. [35]. They have bad reactions to gold rather than silver [1] [2].
  • Leonine: Lion shapeshifters are known for forming complex social groups and integrate well (more or less) into both metahuman society and their non-shapeshifting kin, though usually in the latter situation, the shapeshifter is generally the dominant member of the pride [8]. They are extremely rare (owing to the dwindling lion population) and nearly all are from Azania, where they are protected by the great dragon Mujaji. In human form, they often have tawny-colored hair and dark skin [39].
  • Primate: Found in Amazonia and are rumored to be involved with the Primeira Vaga criminal cartel there [40].
  • Ocelot: One of the Patherine breeds, ocelot shapeshifters are primarily found in Amazonia and known to sometimes integrate into metahuman society there [41] [27] [5].
  • Owl: Common only in Europe [33].
  • Lupine: Wolf shapeshifters are possibly the most famous shifter type due to their incorrect association with the legends of the werewolf. They're found throughout the northern hemisphere, and magic ability is uncommon. They often have hairy palms and eyebrows that meet in the middle in their human form [1] [2] [35] [5]. Wolf shapeshifters are know for forming complex social groups and integrate well (more or less) into both metahuman society and their non-shapeshifting kin, though usually in the latter situation, the shapeshifter is generally the dominant member of the pack [8].
  • Pantherine: Panther shapeshifters are most commonly found in Malaysia, sub-Sarahan Africa and West Africa and are some of the most common shapeshifters on the continent of Africa. In human form, they often have an extremely dark complexion. [35] [5].
  • Reindeer: There are rumors of reindeer shapeshifters in the region north of Lake Baikal in Yakut [42].
  • Seal: Found in coastal waters worldwide. Commonly display magical ability. Have webbed toes or fingers in human form and luxuriant, glossy hair [1] [2] [39]. It is claimed a seal shapeshifter can hold its breath for up to fifteen minutes, swim as strong and as fast as a seal, regenerate and sees and smells astrally [43]. There are reports in 2072 that seal shapeshifter once shipped herself to a zoo in a highly secured corporate enclave, then shapeshifted in the middle of the night and walked out of the quarantine tanks [44].
  • Snake: There are rumors of snake shapeshifters in the deserts of the world, but there have been no confirmed sightings as of 2062 [36][32]. Snake shapeshifters are known to inhabit the jungles of South America [27].
  • Super-Shifters: Rumored shapeshifters that can assume any animal or metahuman form, believed by some to be the elite agents for the Free Spirit Vernya in Yakut [45].
  • Swan: Common in Europe [33].
  • Tigrine: Tiger shapeshifters are found in Asia from Yakut to India, they rarely display magical ability. They have cat-like and/or reflective eyes in human form [1] [2]. The various Chinese states maintain good prices for tiger shapeshifters and their parts for us in traditional Chinese medicine [35][5].
  • Ursine: Bear shapeshifters are found throughout the northern hemisphere, and rarely display magical ability. Their animal vestige consists of extensive body hair and layers of fat on top of solid muscle [1] [2] [35] [5].
  • Vulpine: Fox shapeshifters are mostly found in Japan and the Chinese states and commonly use magical skills, favoring illusion and manipulation spells. Their easy-to-spot vestige is a long fox tail, which they often cover in a long coat or robes [1] [2] [35] [5].


Shapeshifters usually live in the wild in their animal form, but many choose to also live among metahumans[1] [2]. Shapeshifters are not malicious in intent towards the rest of metahumanity, but they are considered threats because of their more animalistic mindset. They have strong, primal instincts appropriate to their breed. A predator shapeshifter may kill without thinking, making them faster than an unaugmented metahuman. And human morality may be alien to them.[3]. Wolf shapeshifters unaccustomed to metahumans, for example, might mistake a simple smile as a prelude to an attack [46]. Shapeshifters are often treated as outcasts by both metahuman and animal species, which is why they so often form communities with one another [47].

Shapeshifter culture is as varied as the number of breeds that exist (which is unknown) and the metahuman cultures they may adopt. A shapeshifter raised more or less in the wild will exhibit behaviors and instincts of their breed, but once they are exposed regularly to the burdensome weight of metahumanity's global society, they will change and adapt (and not always for the better!). Often, they will live on the fringes of both worlds... at the edge of metahuman civilization and the wilderness. Many predatory breeds will hunt in the urban sprawls, which includes potentially hunting metahumans, where they think they can get away with it. Conversely, there is a strong shapeshifter counterculture where some shifters prefer their metahuman form and pride themselves on how well they integrate into society and how long it has been since they've taken on their animal form [48].

Most nations do not grant shapeshifters metahuman status or rights and treat them as little more than animals because of their difficulties adhering to social mores. Shapeshifter criminals are treated as little more than rabid dogs by the authorities of most nations [22] and few hospitals (or even veterinary clinics) will treat shapeshifters [49]. Because they often find themselves hunted by metahumanity and are sometimes confused by their rules, some shapeshifters tend to be paranoid and prepared for betrayal[3]. By 2078, knowledge of shapeshifters is becoming more and more predominant, though old prejudices remain... on his popularBuilding an Identity series, Garrett Storm dedicated an entire episode to shapeshifters, but referred to them as "Furs" and, more pejoratively, "Beastmen" [50].

Shapeshifter Rights[]

  • Around 2060, a group called the Astral Space Preservation Society was working to establish some legal guidelines and precedence for laws concerning bounties on shapeshifters, but had been so far stymied by anti-Awakened groups [51].
  • As of 2070, shapeshifters do not have legal rights or citizenship in most North American/European countries and often they have bounties placed on them; Amazonia, Yakut and parts of China are more amenable to recognizing the rights of non-metahuman sapients like shapeshifters [52]. It continues to be a matter of heated contention and while some progressive countries grant full citizen, most grant restricted civil rights at best [49].
  • In April of 2072, U.N. Accord #139-X28 briefly gave non-metahumans sapients (including shapeshifters) basic rights, but it was vetoed by the Security Council in a closed door session soon thereafter [53].
  • By 2078, the following countries recognize shapeshifter sapience and grant them SINs [5]:

Shapeshifters Around the World[]


Leopard shapeshifters in West Africa are called Warek and are the most populous type of shapeshifter found on the continent. Warek have an allergy to gold instead of silver. [54]. In 2059 a pirate named Ago Krote who operated in the waters off Africa claimed he kept a Warek chained up and every time he skinned it, it regrew its skin. He claims to have made 60,000 nuyen at 1,500 nuyen a pelt before the Warek chewed through its own limbs and escaped its confinement [55].

Asamando: Asamando is known to be welcoming to shapeshifters and shapeshifters live openly among the Infected there [56]. As of 2073, the capital city of Asamando, Nyamkopon, hosts a large population of sentient non-metahumans, including shapeshifters. Bamboi, a small village on the Black Volta, is a community of shapeshifters centered on a half-dozen mineral springs said to have appeared in 2012 that feed into the Black Volta. The springs are considered by locals to have healing and therapeutic properties. Asamando military forces took control of the area in 2038 and Queen Laula declared the mineral springs as a national heritage site soon thereafter, with a permanent garrison stationed outside the village. A resort is located at the largest of the springs, but the others are legally accessible only by a permit from the Ministry of Magic [57].

Azanian Confederation: The capital of the Zulu Nation in Azania, New Hlobane, has a strong population of shapeshifters, including a former Mayor. Table Mountain, near Cape Town on the southwestern coast of the country, has several packs of shapeshifters living on it [58].

Congo Tribal Lands: The Kobíkela, a loose federation of shamans operating out of the Kinshasa-Brazzaville sprawl, are rumored to be associated with shapeshifters in the jungles of Congo. There was some significant vote held among the shamans concerning shapeshifters in 2071, but there's little info on what was being voted on or what the result was [59].

Ivory Coast: As of 2059, rumors claim that the pirates of Les Esprits d'Eau have a seal shapeshifter on their crew [43].

Nigeria: As of 2071, a criminal gang known as the Láíyà operating out of Lagos had a 12-year old that's assigned to leading hunting parties against shapeshifters [60].

Pan-African Federation: In 2062, rumors suggested that there were several different breeds of shapeshifter in the Kalahari desert were in direct conflict if not outright war, divided mainly along predator-prey lines [61].


Cambodia: Shapeshifters are prominent among the followers of the Naga who lead the Angkor Awakened in Angkor [62].

Indochina: As of 2064, there are rumors of shapeshifters living in the wilds of Indochina's forests [63].

Korea: Shapeshifters and hostile spirits have occupied Mount Paektusan on the Korean/Manchurian border since Halley's Comet arrival in 2061, making it dangerous for anyone to travel there [64].

Manchuria: As of 2064, Kai-Xiang, son of revolutionary leader and President Shen Yao-Xiang, has lead some raids through Russian territory into Yakut against the shapeshifters there [65]. The Ta'ren, invisible Manchurian Spirits of Man, may be participating in or guiding attacks against the shapeshifters of Yakut and have been spotted heading north into Yakut [66].

Mongolia: Shapeshifters of an unknown type are rumored to inhabit the Gobi desert [67].

Russia: As of 2059, the UGB suspected the Siberians of using shapeshifters as spies and saboteurs [68]. Vladivostok, on the far eastern shore of Russia, is something of a covert combat zone between several factions. Agents of Russia, the shapeshifters of Awakened Yakut and the Siberian rebel forces of the Sagan Zaba work against one another, with Evo somewhere in the middle trying to keep the surrounding metroplex from exploding into chaos and open warfare [69].

Shaanxi: Wujen and geomancers in the region of Xuanwu Peak, one of the Five Sacred Mountains, believe shapeshifters spotted in the region may be agents from Yakut and, more importantly, may be involved in siphoning magical energy from the sacred mountain [70].

Yakut: As of 2059, there were rumors of reindeer shapeshifters in the region north of Lake Baikal in Yakut [42]. Shapeshifter fur is sometimes harvested on the Sibertian taiga for the creation of Talesma [71]. By 2062 it was known that in 2030 there was an indigenous uprising in Yakut aided by shapeshifters that successfully declared independence from Russia [72]. As the dust settled, it became revealed that the shapeshifters were being organized by the Free Spirit known as Vernya; they became the secret police and intelligence agents of the new Yakut state, overseers of the mundane metahuman population <ref name="soa140144>o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 140-144</ref>[73] <ref name="tct4449>o79981650The Complete Trog p. 44-49</ref>. In warfare, it is obvious that metahumans are nothing more than bait and fodder; the real soldiers are the myriad of shapeshifters supplemented by other awakened beasts, like the wooly mammoth [74].

Australia & Oceania[]

Australia: There are unconfirmed rumors of dingo and snake shapeshifters living in Australia [32].

Philippines: Dog (Malakat), hog (Pugot) and seal are the only known types of shapeshifters in the Philippines [29].

Hawai'i: The great dragon Naheka formed relationships with several tribes of shapeshifters during his time serving Mujaji in Africa, some of whom chose to continue serving the dragon in Hawai'i [75].


Shapeshifters are more common in Europe than in North America and many have exotic forms. Swan, heron, owl and horse shapeshifters are common. In Eastern Europe, shapeshifters are viewed as representatives of supernatural evil and are usually hunted once uncovered [33].

Allied German States: Called gestalt wandlers in the German States, there are reports of wolf and bear shapeshifters operating in the backwaters of Alliance territory. [76]

Czech Republic: Unlike much of Eastern Europe, the Czech Republic extends citizenship towards shapeshifters (among other Awakened sentient creatures) and society is generally more tolerate of non-metahuman sentients [77][78]. Prague, the Republic's capital, had a shapeshifter in the Chamber of Deputies as of 2070 [79].

Scandinavia: Shapeshifters are rumored to help Green Cells near Bergen, Scandinavia attack AG Chemie Europa's petroleum and gas operations in the Norwegian Sea [80].

Tír na nÓg: Though shapeshifters are rare in the Tír, they only take the forms of animals prominent in Irish druidic totems and some so-called 'human' druids may actually be shapeshifters [81]. There are rumors of seal shapeshifters living along the coast of the island of Inishglora off the western coast of Tír na nÓg in County Mayo; locals believe they might be seal shamans [82].

United Kingdom: There are rumors of bear and wolf shapeshifters living among Scottish druids, but it is not uncommon for Scottish nobility to accuse one another of being a shapeshifter as a smear tactic [83]. The Great Dragon Rhonabwy employs a wolf shapeshifter leading a pack of wolves to protect the wilds near his lair in Llandovery, Wales [84].

North America[]

The Cutters, a transnational North American criminal gang, are rumored to have shapeshifters among them, but that may be a rumor they started to boost their image on the streets [85].

Algonkian-Manitou Council: Cypress Hills has a resident herd of deer shapeshifters living there as of 2073 and hunting is strictly prohibited [31].

Aztlan: The percentage of non-metahuman sentients (including Shapeshifters) in the Aztlan population was more than twice as high the global average as of 2056. Janguar (or puma) shapeshifters aren't the most common type, but they're the type most likely to be encountered in public; other types include bears, wolves/coyotes and seals. [30]. Rumor suggests that Aztlan (or Aztechnology) has access to the Sextant of Worlds and 10 units of fresh shapeshifter blood is part of what's required in a ritual to activate it [86].

Green War, a paramilitary group in what was once Columbia in Aztlan-held South America has several types of shapeshifters, including jaguar and anaconda, helping in the revolution against Aztlan [87]. Aztlan POW camps in the area have cells specifically designed to hold Awakened critters, including shapeshifters [88].

California Free State: There are rumors of mountain lion and coyote shapeshifters hunting near Ubehebe Crater at the edge of Death Valley in the Mojave Desert [89].

Native American Nations: As of 2057, the NAN grants more rights to shapeshifters than most nations, but still does not recognize them as full citizens [22]. As of 2078, all of the NAN grants full citizenship to shapeshifters [5].

Pueblo Corporate Council: As of 2072, there was a wolf shapeshifter working for the Los Angeles police department. He was attacked by a police officer from Québec at a law enforcement conference at an unspecified date and location [53].

Republic of Québec: As of 2072, Québec still pays bounties for dead shapeshifters [53].

Salish-Shidhe Council: The wilds of the Cascade Mountains near Denny Creek are known to be inhabited by shapeshifters [90]. By 2078, the country is known as one of the major population centers of shapeshifters worldwide [5].

Sioux Nation: The Sioux not only accept shapeshifters as part of their society, they require mandatory "cross-species understanding" classes starting in primary school [8].

United Canadian and American States:

New York City: Despite laws elsewhere in the UCAS, Manhattan is one of the most diverse cities in the country and shapeshifters operate openly here [91].

Seattle: Fenris Nacht is a nightclub in Tacoma, Seattle since at least 2060 that is popular with urban shapeshifters, though wolf shapeshifters seem to be the most common [92] [93] [94] [95].

On Council Island, some of the non-metahuman sentients include bear and eagle shapeshifters from tribal lands [96]. As of 2078, it was uncertain if the 4% "Other" population reported for Council Island includes shapeshifters <ref name="ssbs:es67>o53359571Seattle Sprawl: Emerald Shadows p. 67</ref>.

Rumors suggest that some of the seals along the coasts near Seattle are actually shapeshifters. Though curious and peaceful creatures, pollution and hunting often drives them to work with eco-terrorist groups for protection. Some seal shifters have even been known to work with local smugglers, guiding them through the Sound to avoid patrol boats [97].

Yucatan: There are rumors that shapeshifters have allied with the nature spirits in Yucatan in 2062 to rise up against the Toxics who dominate the land [98].

South America[]

The ecological diversity of the jungles and pampas of South America extend into the shapeshifter population as well. The most commonly encountered include jaguar, ocelot, snake, anaconda, alligator and dolphin shifters, though it is believed many other species exist [27].

Amazonia: As of 2071, it was known that some tribes in the Amazonian rainforest were composed entirely of shapeshifters [99] who are known to be suspicious and even outright hostile to outsiders [100][101]. Amazonia recognizes shapeshifters as equals. Many walk freely among metahumans and even hold down jobs in Amazonian society[27].

When the Great Dragon Hualpa took over Brazil in 2034 and founded Amazonia, shapeshifters were counted among his Awakened army [102] [103].

In 2072 just over 18% of Metropole's population consists of non-metahumans, which includes shapeshifters. [104] and those seen walking openly in the city are mostly younger shapeshifters, who have started to lose their fear of metahumans [105]. For reasons not entirely explained, by 2078, the 'Other' population dropped to 8% of the population of the city or about 15 million non-human metasapients [106]. Shapeshifters are known to participate in "The Fights," underworld pit fighting around the sprawl sponsored jointly by the Komata-Kai Yakuza and Comando Verde [107].

Amazonia is known to recruit jaguar shapeshifters into their intelligence service, a career for which they are uniquely suited. [37]. Jaguar shifters work with both DMAIC and DISA patrolling the Amazonian jungle looking for smugglers and other infiltrators [105]. The DISA field agents, known as the Black Shadows, are mostly composed of shapeshifters of various types and have a reputation for being zealous defenders of Amazonia, particularly against other non-metahuman sapients [108].

DMAIC also acts as something of an inter-species liaison, helping shapeshifters (among others) integrate and adjust to mainstream Amazonian society. Though many shifters choose to set up their own small communities, others live alongside the general populace with few problems [109]. There are growing communities of non-metahuman sapients in Metrôpole, Manaus and Bahia and most of these are shapeshifters, including shapeshifters from around the world seeking acceptance and freedom. The small neighborhoods where shifters, particularly foreign shifters, have started to band together can be more dangerous than most, as the shifter youths tends to be more prone to violence and have formed their own gangs. Metahuman visitors are advised to know where the shifter neighbhorhoods are in Amazonian cities and to steer clear of those areas[110]. The outskirts of the Campinas sector in Metrôpole is specifically cited as a home to foreign shapeshifters that were persecuted in their home countries and don't like to be disturbed [111].

Santa Isabel do Rio Negro, a small trading outpost on the banks of the Rio Negro, non-metahuman sapients (including shapeshifters) trade openly. El Tigre Talmado is a tavern-saloon in the outpost owned by an Ocelot shapeshifter [41]. Primeira Vaga, a criminal cartel in Amazonia, is known to have ocelot and monkey shapeshifters among their soldiers protecting the Terreiro [40]. Comando Verde, another criminal syndicate in Amazonia, also includes shapeshifters in its ranks [104]. Though the Yakuza of Amazonia are more tolerant of Awakened beings than their brethren in Japan, they still refuse to recruit shapeshifters into their ranks [112].

Bogotá: In the Zona Sur region of Bogotá, the Liquid Python Occult Shop is known for, among other things, selling the pelts of various Amazonian shapeshifters and is regularly attacked by Amazonian forces attempting to stop the poaching [113].

Ecuador: The Huaorani people of Ecuador revere Jaguar shapeshifters who make their home in their territory [114].


Amur Tigers: A mercenary unit out of eastern Russia, the Amur tigers are known to test their trainees by sending them into Yakut to engage both the Sagan Zaba rebels and to hunt shifters loyal to Yakut [115].

Centurion: An A-level security corporation operating primarily in Europe and Africa, as of 2072 it is rumored Centurion employs shapeshifters, outfitting them with heavy assault rifles and armor [116].

Evo: One of Evo's primary foci is to integrate the full range of sapients, including shapeshifters, into the greater worlds' society. They are, of course, looking to make a profit from such a stance and subsidiaries like MetaErgonomics work towards that goal [117]. Evo is known to have shapeshifters (among other non-metahuman sentients) that could be used to do wetwork and other missions [118]. Evo is one of the few corporations negotiating with Awakened Yakut to do business there, but Yakut is perfectly happy working in isolation and wants to ensure Evo isn't just looking to plunder and pillage as so many have before. Evo, for its part, is working to navigate the variety of cultures that compose Yakut... aside from the native Siberian metahuman culture, each breed of shapeshifter has its own cultural nuances for Evo to learn and successfully navigate [119].

Mitsuhama Computer Technologies: As of 2078, Mitsuhama has been working towards the improvement of the global SIN registry, including registering all non-metahuman sapients with a special SIN. MCT has already been working towards implementing this new system, but they will need to tread carefully with the Corporate Court to see it established globally [120].

Renraku Computer Systems: As of 2078, Renraku is making inroads into the Amazonian economy at the expense of the shapeshifter population. They are working to buy up the old pre-Awakening Bom Futuro plantation site to restart soybean production in the area. Despite Amazonia's shapeshifter population opposing the deal, war with Aztlan has left the Amazonian economy weak and they may have no option but to allow Renraku to re-encroach on shapeshifter land in the jungle [121]. There is also a rumor that Renraku has been hiring runners to capture shapeshifters to see if their regenerative properties protect them from the affects of the CFD virus [122].

RhineGold: Alicia Menenex of RhineGold (formerly of De Button) is rumored to be working on a project to grow clonal shapeshifter skin to make dressings that help wounds heal faster. Its said that she's in the testing phase and is using PoWs for grafting experiments, according to information being spread by Horizon [123].

Tsunami, Inc.: The world's second largest mercenary company includes a number of exotic members, including shapeshifters, though there is still some pockets of prejudice against non-metahumans in the various cells that make up the company [124].

Named Shapeshifters[]

  • Aitana - a jaguar shapeshifter and second-in-command of the criminal organization Comando Verde in Amazonia in 2072 [104] [125]. Some time before 2078, the former leader of the Comando's died and Aitana took over the criminal organization. So far, she has proven perhaps even a more capable leader than her predecessor [126].
  • Akecheta - a male wolf shapeshifter and member of the Sioux Wildcats studied by Dr. Lucy Shapiro during her research for a U.N. report on sapients in April of 2071 [7].
  • Alejandro Tepeyollotl - a jaguar shapeshifter trained by Aztlan special forces who defected to the eco-terrorist group known as Primeira Vaga [39] [127].
  • Ambamra - tiger shapeshifter, one of the "Laughing Tigers" along with his mate, Xie Xie Nguyen. The two are notorious shadowrunners and assassins operating out of Hong Kong and Dhaka [39].
  • Animal Man - shifter of an unknown type who posted commentary about his kind in the New Magic in 2057 download in Shadowlands 2.0 [3].
  • Artaxias - a lion shapeshifter and toxic shaman who rose to prominence in 2070 associating with extremist neo-anarchist cells in coordinated attacks against all the megacoporations. As of 2074, several active bounties were available for his capture [128].
  • Daciana - a wolf shapeshifter shaman living with her mate, Dolph, in a cabin in the wilds of Seren’diol Forest in Tir Tairngire around 2074 [129].
  • Deepti - a shapeshifter (likely a Siberian tiger by her description) who committed suicide rather than let poachers have her unborn cubs [130].
  • Dolph - a wolf shapeshifter adept living with his mate, Daciana, in a cabin in the wilds of Seren’diol Forest in Tir Tairngire around 2074 [129].
  • Enapay - a wolf shapeshifter and one of the older sons of Akecheta and Eyota, he was studied by Dr. Lucy Shapiro during her research for a U.N. report on sapients in April of 2071 [7].
  • Eyota - a female wolf shapeshifter in Sioux territory in 2071 who was studied by Dr. Lucy Shapiro during her research for a U.N. report on sapients. Eyota was leader of a mixed pack of shapeshifters and mundane wolves [7].
  • Farseer - eagle shapeshifter who hired a group of shadowrunners to oppose the Toxic Shaman Marta some time in 2052 [34].
  • Grizz - a bear shapeshifter, part of a runner group called the Alphas that's seen action around the world [131].
  • Hanska - a wolf shapeshifter and one of the older sons of Akecheta and Eyota, he was studied by Dr. Lucy Shapiro during her research for a U.N. report on sapients in April of 2071 [7].
  • Kitsune - a fox shapeshifter, astral rockstar and magician murdered while in Astral form in Neo-Tokyo by her label, ManaSonic, as a publicity stunt early in 2071 [132] [133].
  • Kiu - a half-breed polar bear shapeshifter, part of a team of dragon hunters in arctic regions. Kiu typically works as bait while the rest of the team waits for the dragon to appear [134].
  • Leona Windwalker - an eagle shapeshifter working at the Eagle Lodge aviary on Council Island, Seattle as of 2072 [96].
  • Lupus - wolf shapeshifter and famous Seattle trideo producer in 2051 [135].
  • Manuel Tphthhht Auurhuuukk! - a seal shapeshifter in the Philippines working with the Environmentalist Faction there in 2059 [136].
  • Niraj "Potluck" Pawashi - wolf shapeshifter and leader of a group of nomadic shapeshifters who travel throughout the Pueblo Corporate Council before they return to Metahumanity Ablaze to sell their wares [137].
  • Pama'awu - this public face of the Children of the Rainbow Serpent is rumored to be a shapeshifter (among other things) [138].
  • Romulus - a wolf shapeshifter who worked as an irregular asset for Lone Star . The protagonist of The Forever Drug.
  • Tiger-Tiger - tiger shapeshifter who posted commentary about his kind in the New Magic in 2057 download in Shadowlands 2.0 [3].
  • Ulric Bezyzvestnykh - a bear shapeshifter and field commander of the Siberian Awakened militia in Yakut [39].
  • Volk - wolf shapeshifter in the employ of the Great Dragon Rhonabwy during the Rite of Succession around 2062 [139].
  • Xie Xie Nguyen - tiger shapeshifter, one of the "Laughing Tigers" along with her mate, Ambamra. The two are notorious shadowrunners and assassins operating out of Hong Kong and Dhaka [39].

Behind the Screen[]

1st Edition[]

  • Statistics for standard shapeshifters can be found on o10798697Shadowrun p. 191

2nd Edition[]

  • Statistics for standard shapeshifters can be found on o90387045Shadowrun Second Edition p. 234
  • Shapeshifter character creation rules are found on o24883206Shadowrun Companion pp. 36-38
  • Shapeshifters may not purchase the Adrenaline Surge Physical Edge (o24883206Shadowrun Companion p. 24) because their Reaction or Initiative is already enhanced by Magic.
  • Shapeshifters must spend a Complex Action to change between forms. When shifting from one form the other, physical objects worn are not transformed and may become damaged during the transformation process if not removed first. Shapeshifter magicians in animal form can cast spells, but cannot use Centering Skills or fulfill geasa that their beast forms cannot perform. A shapeshifter cannot use physical adept powers while in animal form.[6]
  • Shapeshifters are dual natured. They can be identified as a shapeshifter while in human form through astral perception unless capable of Masking. Shapeshifter magicians with the appropriate Magic Priority can use astral projection while in human form [26].
  • Note that shapeshifter player characters have different Regeneration rules than gamemaster characters and can only regenerate while in animal form. They also do not regenerate damage from silver weapons [26].
  • Because of their bestial nature, shapeshifter player characters do not receive free contacts during character creation [26].

3rd Edition[]

  • Statistics for standard shapeshifters can be found on o94888170Critters p. 42.
  • Shapeshifter character creation rules are found on o21216589Shadowrun Companion Revised p. 34-37.
  • Shapeshifters must spend a Complex Action to change between forms. When shifting from one form the other, physical objects worn are not transformed and may become damaged during the transformation process if not removed first. Shapeshifter magicians in animal form can cast spells, but cannot use Centering Skills or fulfill geasa that their beast forms cannot perform. A shapeshifter cannot use physical adept powers while in animal form.[140]
  • Shapeshifters are dual natured. They can be identified as a shapeshifter while in human form through astral perception unless capable of Masking. Shapeshifter magicians with the appropriate Magic Priority can use astral projection while in human form [141].
  • Shapeshifter characters regenerate the same way as Critters (see o94888170Critters p. 13). Weapon foci are more deadly to them and they do not regenerate from damage dealt by silver weapons [142].
  • Because of their bestial nature, shapeshifter player characters do not receive free contacts during character creation [140].
  • Shapeshifter characters may not purchase cyberware [143].

4th Edition[]

  • Shapeshifter character creation rules are found on o22649160Runner's Companion pp. 86-88, 181.
  • Statistics for anaconda shapeshifters can be found on o29448791Corporate Intrigue p. 104.
  • Statistics for jaguar shapeshifters can be found on o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 159, o52781780Jet Set p. 64 and o34282905Colombian Subterfuge p. 17.
  • The Uneducated quality on o90760406Shadowrun Fourth Edition p. 83 and o12707240Shadowrun 20th Anniversary p. 96 often applies to shapeshifters that have developed their own primitive societies.
  • The shapeshifter is given as an example of a type of character with No Rating/Unaware skill in Technical skills on o90760406Shadowrun Fourth Edition p. 108 and o12707240Shadowrun 20th Anniversary p. 119
  • The VetTech skill on o11587182Running Wild p. 35 can be used to provide medical care for Shapeshifters.
  • The Paramed Shaman contact type on o22649160Runner's Companion p. 142 is capable of working on a variety of paranatural animals, including shapeshifters.
  • Rules for silver bullets for use against shapeshifters (and other creatures allergic to silver) can be found on o80643476Arsenal p. 34.
  • The Lycanthrope adept metamagic ability on o40143409Parazoology 2 p. 40 simulates shapeshifting.

5th Edition[]

  • Shapeshifter character creation rules are at o02196230Run Faster pp. 100-103 and 105-108.
  • Statistics for the DISA Stalker (Jaguar Shapeshifter Adept) are found on o53666454Shadows in Focus: City by Shadow: Metropole p. 29
  • Statistics for the Siberian Shapeshifter (Wolf) are found on ?The Vladivostok Gauntlet p. 17
  • When the Dual-Natured Defender Mastery Quality is in use, shapeshifters cannot change form [144].
  • According to o14719198Howling Shadows p. 186, shapeshifters can wear Critter Body Armor and other critter gear in their animal form, though they'll need help putting it on. They do not need special training to wear the armor as a non-sentient critter would.
  • The Totem Form adept metamagic ability on o52073463Street Grimoire p. 157 simulates shapeshifting.


Detection by Astral Perception

In 2nd edition, o90387045Shadowrun Second Edition states "A shapeshifter always shows its animal form in astral space..." on p. 145 but clarifies on p. 230 in the Critter entry on Shapeshifters with "Viewing the shapeshifter in astral space will reveal its identity, as its alternate form is always visible there." (this is consistent with and identical to the text in 1st edition). o24883206Shadowrun Companion introduces a contradiction on p. 37: "A shapeshifter's astral form always appears as an idealized image of its animal form, regardless of the shapeshifter's current form. This means that a shapeshifter in human form can be detected by astral perception unless he is an initiate capable of Masking."

Novels Featuring Shapeshifters[]

  • Blood Sport by Lisa Smedman
  • Preying for Keeps by Mel Odom
  • The Forever Drug by Lisa Smedman
  • The Vladivostok Gauntlet by Oliver Gagnon
  • Who Hunts the Hunter by Nyx Smith


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 o10798697Shadowrun p.187
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 o90387045Shadowrun Second Edition p.230
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 o24231617Awakenings: New Magic in 2057 p. 90
  4. o12707240Shadowrun 20th Anniversary p. 23
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 o02196230Run Faster p. 100 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "rf100" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "rf100" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "rf100" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "rf100" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "rf100" defined multiple times with different content
  6. 6.0 6.1 o24883206Shadowrun Companion p. 36
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 o11587182Running Wild p. 53-54
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 o11587182Running Wild p. 53
  9. o22649160Runner's Companion p. 58
  10. o50209246Matrix p. 28
  11. o60175187Augmentation p. 126
  12. o60984934Forbidden Arcana p. 89
  13. o39818495Paranormal Animals of North America p.35
  14. ?Missions: Food Poisoning p. 22
  15. o22649160Runner's Companion p. 59
  16. o92279754The Grimoire: 14th Edition, 2050 p. 79
  17. o94888170Critters p. 29
  18. o26451121Paranormal Animals of Europe p. 67
  19. o94888170Critters p. 34
  20. o57280352Target: Matrix p. 91
  21. o40143409Parazoology 2 p. 32
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 o24883206Shadowrun Companion p.38
  23. o92279754The Grimoire: 14th Edition, 2050 p. 90
  24. o11587182Running Wild p. 48
  25. o52073463Street Grimoire p. 12
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 o24883206Shadowrun Companion p.37 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "src37" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "src37" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "src37" defined multiple times with different content
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 27.4 27.5 27.6 ?Shadows of Latin America p. 137
  28. o29448791Corporate Intrigue p. 102-104
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 o98082743Cyberpirates! p. 149
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 o53561113Aztlan p.112
  31. 31.0 31.1 o34954845Sixth World Almanac p. 162
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 o57038227Target: Awakened Lands p. 115
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 33.4 o26451121Paranormal Animals of Europe p. 141
  34. 34.0 34.1 o57446066Native American Nations Volume Two p.49
  35. 35.0 35.1 35.2 35.3 35.4 35.5 35.6 35.7 o22649160Runner's Companion p. 66
  36. 36.0 36.1 o03317300Target: Wastelands p. 119
  37. 37.0 37.1 o11587182Running Wild p. 52
  38. o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 159
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 39.3 39.4 39.5 o22649160Runner's Companion p. 67
  40. 40.0 40.1 o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 149
  41. 41.0 41.1 o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 148
  42. 42.0 42.1 o94379615Target: Smuggler Havens p. 40
  43. 43.0 43.1 o98082743Cyberpirates! p. 17
  44. o11587182Running Wild p. 47
  45. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 142
  46. o11587182Running Wild p. 44
  47. o11587182Running Wild p. 9
  48. o02196230Run Faster p. 55-66
  49. 49.0 49.1 o60175187Augmentation p. 15
  50. o02196230Run Faster p. 44
  51. o04858358Magic in the Shadows p. 11
  52. o59345449Street Magic p. 14
  53. 53.0 53.1 53.2 o11587182Running Wild p. 46
  54. o98082743Cyberpirates! p. 155
  55. o98082743Cyberpirates! p. 99
  56. ?Dark Terrors p. 141
  57. o34954845Sixth World Almanac p. 102
  58. o34954845Sixth World Almanac pp. 104 - 105
  59. o64432313Feral Cities p. 75
  60. o7828522310 Gangs p. 12
  61. o03317300Target: Wastelands p. 44
  62. o57038227Target: Awakened Lands p. 121
  63. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 146
  64. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 189
  65. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 33
  66. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 34
  67. o03317300Target: Wastelands p. 40
  68. o94379615Target: Smuggler Havens p. 100
  69. o14719198Howling Shadows p. 16
  70. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 39
  71. o94379615Target: Smuggler Havens p. 99
  72. o70096438Shadows of Asia p. 122
  73. o34954845Sixth World Almanac pp. 132-133
  74. o14719198Howling Shadows p. 21
  75. o06516714The Clutch of Dragons p. 103
  76. o84296706Germany Sourcebook p.156
  77. o30783549Shadows of Europe p. 224
  78. o34954845Sixth World Almanac p. 145
  79. o34954845Sixth World Almanac p. 144
  80. o94379615Target: Smuggler Havens p. 71
  81. o89952224Tír na nÓg p.159
  82. o89952224Tír na nÓg p.92
  83. o66933837London Sourcebook p.140
  84. o83955029Survival of the Fittest p. 84
  85. o33031982Vice p. 132
  86. o66078292Conspiracy Theories p. 168
  87. o29448791Corporate Intrigue p. 100-104
  88. o34282905Colombian Subterfuge p. 30-31
  89. o20709502California Free State p. 118
  90. o27794761First Run p. 51
  91. ?Missions: Spin Control p. 5
  92. o03045067New Seattle p. 45
  93. o87427754Seattle 2072 p. 76
  94. o72577236Damage Control p. 7-13
  95. o53359571Seattle Sprawl Box Set Map Reference Card
  96. 96.0 96.1 o87427754Seattle 2072 p. 132
  97. o87427754Seattle 2072 p. 157
  98. o03317300Target: Wastelands p. 26
  99. o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 137
  100. o61900501Ghost Cartels p. 147
  101. o34282905Colombian Subterfuge p. 15
  102. o11587182Running Wild p. 78
  103. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 24
  104. 104.0 104.1 104.2 o33031982Vice p. 126
  105. 105.0 105.1 ?Shadows of Latin America p. 20
  106. o53666454Shadows in Focus: City by Shadow: Metropole p. 6
  107. o53666454Shadows in Focus: City by Shadow: Metropole p. 19
  108. o53666454Shadows in Focus: City by Shadow: Metropole p. 24
  109. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 26
  110. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 30, 39
  111. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 141
  112. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 41
  113. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 114
  114. ?Shadows of Latin America p. 106
  115. o79981650The Complete Trog p. 45
  116. o33031982Vice p. 181
  117. o02196230Run Faster p. 57
  118. o11008252Market Panic p. 84
  119. o11008252Market Panic p. 86
  120. o11008252Market Panic p. 117
  121. o11008252Market Panic p. 155
  122. o85550532Stolen Souls p. 131
  123. o60859285Attitude p. 158
  124. o23124903War! p. 54
  125. o23124903War! p. 28
  126. o53666454Shadows in Focus: City by Shadow: Metropole p. 26
  127. o52781780Jet Set p. 59, 63
  128. o45711556Hazard Pay p. 36
  129. 129.0 129.1 o33437256Elven Blood p. 57-58
  130. o11587182Running Wild p. 5
  131. o77009313Storm Front p. 50, 54
  132. o07914318Corporate Enclaves p. 134
  133. o60859285Attitude p. 57
  134. o11587182Running Wild p. 69
  135. o60419545Total Eclipse p.37
  136. o98082743Cyberpirates! p. 80
  137. o47023441The Twilight Horizon p. 89-90
  138. o57038227Target: Awakened Lands p. 76
  139. o83955029Survival of the Fittest p. 91
  140. 140.0 140.1 o21216589Shadowrun Companion Revised p. 35
  141. o21216589Shadowrun Companion Revised p. 37
  142. o21216589Shadowrun Companion Revised pp. 36-37
  143. o21216589Shadowrun Companion Revised p. 15
  144. o60984934Forbidden Arcana p. 36


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External Links[]