Hey hey people. Hype here. Burning massiveness man of the hour.
Now I may not review at all as much as I used to, but I am the one who organizes things and often cleans up pages and directories behind the scenes. And as such, I give things a skim over, whether it be certain pages clogging the categories or to add new people in.
So let me get down to business. There are certain things that occur so much on this Wikia that it is almost trope worthy for us, and some of these may have already become inside jokes for several people. However, to someone only coming in here with fresh ideas, its a good chance they may fall under one of these occurences just because of any reason. To this, I decided to make this small guide on common things I've seen thus far on the Wikia, and left some pointers to perhaps enhance an OC with them.
Disclaimer : Every single thing I say here can be done correctly and has been done correctly, but is more often than naught done incorrectly or very mismatch for the OC. That said, some OCs have these traits and work it off beautifully, because they're made to have these.
Disclaimer 2: This blog may contain curse words. I believe the bulk of you are grown up, but hey, precautions. Brought to you uncensored. ;)
Common Occurence One: Casual Clothing!
This is perhaps the biggest occurence I've seen misused. OC's that come from all parts of the world, have all types of potential clothing: Jeans, Hoodie, and an ordinary T-shirt. This is absolutely bull. You have all the freedom to go and look up different cultures, perhaps add style or maybe even a completely different wardrobe for your OC, or hell, go into the future and wear a jumpsuit or something more futuristic. And yet I keep seeing these redundant, boring designs on the eyes. It leaves nothing to the eyes. Now, there's nothing wrong with these clothes, but its such a waste of potential, its on the same level of having the golden ticket to Willy Wonka's factory, and then turning it into a freaking broom factory.
How would I fix this? Look into clothing from all over, expand your vision of what people wear. The world does not only wear hoodies, jeans, and graphic tees. There's a huge fashion world out there, and while you do not need to submerge your body into see it, you simply need to give the effort and go outside of the comfort zone.
Common Occurence Two: Tonfas and Katanas!
An oldie but a goodie. If there are two weapon families that are pretty damn overused, is the obvious Katana, and the less obvious Tonfas. Katanas should be simple, all the badass heroes and main protagonists have one, so should yours, right? Ah ha, no. Katana's are fine and dandy, but this is RWBY. Give it a little something instead of having it be, "The sword passed down from the family". Tonfas are a slightly different story, what with their multi-fascinate design, they've become severely popular for transformations just because of the convenience.
You can't just completely ignore Katanas or Tonfas, but I would say look into more interesting weapon choices. Add weaknesses or compensate them with your semblance or something. One OC on here has a Kinetic Yo-Yo weapon, and I myself came up with a Paddleball Mace, I'm very sure you can atleast go into other types of swords and melee weapons.
Common Occurence Three: Brooding!
Raise your hands if you have or read someone with a tragic backstory. I'm pretty sure the bulk of you said yes out there. Tragic Backstories have always been a hard hitter home, ever since the Tragic Plays from long ago Rome and Greece. They entice the reader with similar feelings, and make them feel either sadness or butterflies in their stomach as it finishes, making them kind of heart-to-heart with the character. However, either the tragic stories here equate to Hope-level whining (Final Hallway 13), or are so sad and cringeworthy that it makes Kerry look like a saint. And do stay away with 'mysterious' backstories as well. 95% of the time they end up looking SO cheesy there is not enough chips to compensate this.
You don't necessairly need a Tragic Backstory to have a good backstory. Someone could have a glorious written and well comprehended backstory, and it could be about pixies and fairy dust. Just write to your ability, but do realize that it is actually quite challenging to write a Tragic Backstory without understanding the mechanics of one. If you want to learn, I recommend spending a night of your time and go reading some old greek plays. Oedipus Rex is a very popular tragic play, MacBeth is another but not Greek.
Common Occurence Four: Faunus of a Kind!
This subject, yeah. perhaps another one close to the level of casual clothing, Faunus are as you know, a race of demi-humans socially underneath the humans and adorn certain animal physical and some general enhanced traits. Generally, they. However, there's a HUGE number of them which stay within The Three: Foxes, Cats, and Wolves. Foxes and Cat Faunus tend to have this steryotype of just being playful tricksters, and Wolves try to become engimatic badasses who hang alone and stuff: When Ironically actual Wolves tend to stay in packs following the Alpha to ensure survival. It's so twisted that it pains me to see them actually be right.
It's slowly becoming less of a problem, but it isn't really too adressed. I recommend just staying away from Foxes, Wolves, and Cats if you can help it entirely. Monty pretty much said, "Oh, any animal or creature could be a faunus, just less common than mamallian types", which raises the question of how a Faunus is actually made. But anyway, you could use so many different mammals as well, don't feel compelled to use the three just because they seem 'cool'.
Common Occurence Five: Color!
I remember when the color rule came to being almost a year from this post. Some people expected it, some people were rushed in their blindspot, and some didn't care. It generally hinted to Characters dealing with colors, and as we found out are actually mechanisms to keep repeating the past's error and almost erasure of expression. Anyway, onto actual usage of the colors: When I read designs, I see colors that end up making a terrible matchup, and end up being an overall eyesore. That or, are plain unattractive and don't invite the person to their design.
Play around with colors. Feel them, become them. Notice how the colors work along with each other, and notice which colors should NEVER be combined. Bright colors, dark colors, try not to stay within a singular monotone shade or color, as it hurts the flow if you do. An easy color matchup is Black and Yellow, the Yellow is popped out due to the contrast to the darkness of the Black. However, the same could be said if Yellow majoritizes over the Black. It's really to Trial and Error, but the important part is to Experiment!
Common Occurence Six: War-Ready Teenagers!
Whenever I gloss over personalities, I read characters who have really stoic personalities. Sure, I guess Beacon or any Hunting school is somewhat of a militarized college to fight off the impending world reset, but alot of these OCs come to be very bland in terms of actually being a teenager, its as if they don't have hormones at all or anything. The biggest offenders I see of this are the so called Social Butterfly characters, who end up being as stiff as a 2x4 board with very little blossoming. On the opposite side, some don't have heavy emotion due to life altering events that transpired- However I'm pretty damn sure they have preferences, likes, dislikes, and even allergies.
Give your characters hobbies, special talents, and perhaps even allergies and ailments. Make them become like people more than the machines they wield, you know? Maybe have your character play an instrument, or make them sea-sick or have motion sickness. It helps develop the character beyond the battle specs they are. Give them an interesting quirk that doesn't necessairly add to their positivity- However, overdosing on them can be just as bad as not having any at all, Moderation is Key.
Common Occurence Seven: Wish-Fufillment!
Wish-Fufillment is a very stingy occurence, however, it should be addressed anyway. Wish-Fufillment can be as simple as dreaming about a possibility and having it come true. In actuality, Wish Fufillment is quite vital to us writers- It helps us imagine and keeps our attention to things only our subconscious could think of. Do not go about thinking that it is a bad thing to do this. HOWEVER. Abused, and it becomes so cheesy for the hardass to have everything to his way, or as I'd like to call it, Plot Armor. Plot Armor is physically having the plot on your side, to where even bad things become twice as better than the situation prior, or basically, Happy Endings everywhere. You do not want to be a Kirito. As well, "Dream Denial" is when NOTHING goes the OC's way, and done incorrectly, equates to a whiny, spoiled rotten OC who has no right to be whining. It somewhat goes along with the Brooding point from earlier.
How can you not overdo Wish-Fufillment or Dream Denial as I'd call it? Have a balance of good and bad in one's life, much similar to what an actual person would have. Not everyone gets everything their way, and at the same time, nobody gets completely destroyed by bad luck, or else they woulda killed themselves before their Aura took conscious form. Authenticity shouldn't matter as Remnant/Vytal and Earth are two damn different places, but the simpliest way I can say this: Have your OC have dreams or journeys to want to do/obligated to finish, but do not make them easy or rather fast to complete. Have it be an experience, not a chore or just a fame up mission.
Common Occurence Eight: Interraction Beyond Boundaries
Alright, so, we meet again. It's time for another small batch, and here I am to talk to you about interractions. But not just any interraction, I'm talking about Fanon-Canon Interraction. Simply put, don't do it. Nono, I'm being very honest about it. By interracting in the show and putting, lets name this guy Jim, Jim into Ruby's life as the boy she meets when she becomes a second year and they kiss or something. Just in that one sentence, I broke anything Canon and made it into my own perpetual world beyond what is actually correct. As much as I'd want to go and snuggle Ruby with every fiber of my being, I can't,
and not because of the age difference. D:< The same goes if you simply throw yourself into Canon families. Just, don't.
Here's a simple way to counterract this: Simply put, don't do it. If you absolutely must and are holding a pitchfork to your chest because I said the basis of "No" in a paragraph, I suggest vague sightings and hearing of names at the very most. I mean, Ruby's practically a 15 year old in College, that's really rare. Would you know her and talk to her? Nope. But would you have heard of the 15 year old Freshman? Perhaps. Another thing to keep in mind, is that not everyone has this ability. Infact, As far as we know, only Ruby, Pyrrha, and maybe slightly Weiss are 'publically' known. Being friends with Blake, for instance, is absolutely asinine due to the fact that she covered herself up and is extremely quiet.
I cannot stress this enough, DO NOT DO THIS if you do not know how to bend yourself around the Universe. And even then, you shouldn't. It's very tacky.
Common Occurence Nine: Rule of Cool
For those who didn't bother to read the link, Rule of Cool generally disregards rules and physics of the world in favor for the action being absolutely badass and awesome especially to stare at. An Important thing to remember is that much like Wish-Fufillment, this is semi-necessary to create spontaneousness as well as creativity. However, it can spiral out of control. And when it does, oh boy, is it a train wreck. In small doses, Rule of Cool is maintained and can be the badassery in bursts that keeps things interesting without breaking the world. In heavy doses, Rule of Cool can also destroy the world's boundaries for no apparent reason other than simply, "I'm Cool, deal with it."
For instance, let me give you a hypothetical. Picture an OC who's tall and dark (grey), has sunglasses on, and has a cigar in his mouth because it makes him look like a matured hunter. This isn't really working, all it's doing is making the Rule of Cool destroy the character itself- There are too many elements that would be 'Cool', and by thus, there is no character: Just a walking pile of memes. Now then, lets have this character interract with Yang and make him have sloppy love making with a 'college' student (THERE WILL BE A TEST, I PROMISE.), even though he's a grown man. And while we're also there, lets have him defeat practically everything that stand in his way, all while the cigar in his mouth still intact as though nothing happened. You see the problem here? There is no character. It's literally the Rule of Cool + One's own self wants or as people call it, a Self-Insert. There's nothing special about this character, infact, the Rule of Cool destroyed what could be there and leaves a hollow husk only 4Chan could enjoy.
Alright so, hints and tips about Rule of Cool. Moderation is most likely the key. Now, Monty knows just as well how to use the Rule of Cool in his own way of messing with your mind and at the same time, running it on an adrenaline rush. As long as your OC isn't crushed by the rules and feats they've done, they should be fine. Remember, Rule of Cool is a lot like Ice Cream: In small moderations and at times, a yummy desert loved by all to consume. Too much eating of Ice Cream can give you brain freeze, stomach-aches, and even generally bend you out of shape before you're crushed under all of the Milk and Sugar.
Common Occurence Ten: Place in the Universe
We're back, one a god damn 'gain. And here, its time AKA a discussion with Special Snowflake Syndrome. You know what I'm talking about, that type of character who is somehow affilated with some canon person in some inexpicable fashion. That type of jerk. The reason this is here is because it's quite crucial in a place of this that is simultaneously in the same world as the Canon. It also deals with Wish-fufillment, so you're gonna hear me say this word. In any case, one's place in this universe is well, crucial to how a character acts and will act with others. However, I do see this sort of thing whereas an OC was a maid of the Schnee Family, or if Ozpin saved said person off of the streets randomly at a young age. Stop. Do you honestly think in the busy lives they live, they have the time to deal with your self insert? If you aren't there right now, there's probably a good reason as to why. It doesn't involve you, so don't involve yourself in it.
It's extremely easy to afflict this occurence. Simply don't. That simple. Slam the "That was Easy" button now. I know that the world view pretty much revolves around RWBY and JNPR, but do not involve yourself with these characters. At best, you can take note of them, or maybe you've seen them once or twice around the campus, as Yang gets around. Do not act like you know them from somewhere. Your place in the universe does not involve them, it involves yourself fitting into said universe. That said, also adheer to the basic rules and don't make your characters OOU*, yes? I don't think that really needs to be said except for the dense headed.
- Out of Universe, like bringing in someone from Star Wars or some crap.
Common Occurence Eleven: Titles
Titles are just a neat little nickname to give an OC and give them a tad more personality. Did they get their name for a goal? Perhaps it's ironic or satiric to their natures? For such an unobvious part of the Fan Char Box, it actually does get attention, whether it be from the reviewer or just a passerby reader. But let's get down to business, because if it's here there has to be something wrong here.
If I see another person name themselves "The Reaper", whereas the only deaths we've seen are off-screen and in another time, I'm going to beat people with a bean bag mercilessly until they become bean bags themselves. Get creative people, hard to call yourself a harbringer of souls when we've barely been subjected to any death on screen. Hell, there are even other examples of edgy titles I don't agree with, and for some reason, "The Reaper" tops every single one of those, even "The Devil".
Circumventing or coming up with a good title? This...is less obvious though. You'll have to think of what you want out of your OC first of all, whether or not they'd deal with a satiric or an ironic title. How did they get the nickname: Did they think of it themselves, were they called it by some random bloke or chap? The point is, A good title comes with thought, and some OC's don't even need titles anyway. Because you'd have to actually do some sort of feat before getting most titles.
More shall be added on when my thoughts become clearer.