While reading through my recently-acquired Gloranthan Classics, I noticed something very interesting: it's rare for NPCs or pregenerated characters to have lower than 14 in any characteristic. Indeed, in many cases, characters in printed products typically have scores even higher than that in most of their characteristics.
Granted, in RuneQuest it's possible to increase one's characteristics through training but neither Intelligence nor Size can be increased at all and starting characters will have had no opportunities to increase Charisma or Power. However, given that the assumption in the rules of second edition is that all characteristics are generated by rolling 3D6 in order, the odds that a beginning character would have so many of them at 14 or better strikes me as unlikely.
So, a question for old RQ hands: are these uber-characters I'm seeing more an artifact of supplements or do they in any way reflect actual play? What's interesting to me is that one of the example characters in the RuneQuest rulebook -- Rurik -- has only two characteristics above 12, as well as Dexterity of 6. To my mind, he looks like a believably generated old school PC, whereas the sample PC in, say, Borderlands are much more impressive overall and remind me uncomfortably of the "I really rolled this character up at home -- just ask my Mom" PCs from many a youthful campaign.