An original character, or OC, is a character created by a fanfic author or roleplayer for an established canon storyline. For instance, if someone were to write a story set in Tolkien's Middle-earth, but focused on a person who was not in the original novels, the new character would be an OC.
Alternatively, this term can be applied to a character created for an original universe.
Subspecies of OC include:
Popular types of OCs include:
Additionally, OC is used in some fandoms as Other Character, a person/being who has been introduced or mentioned in the series, but is not a major player in canon. Sometimes these characters have one or two speaking lines and occasionally interact with the major characters such as Blaise Zabini and Susan Bones in Harry Potter, or Jobal Naberrie from Star Wars. Other times, they're merely people mentioned in passing, like a relative or co-worker, someone we never see but who we know exists. It can also mean a family member we know exists, such as a grandparent, but who has no name.
Original characters are common in sprite comics, webcomics created using sprites, and are sometimes used in fan games. "Recolor" is the general term for a simply modified version of sprites and other images. Recolors are usually created using default bitmap programs such as Microsoft Paint when colors of a certain character's palette are replaced with different colors.
In other fandoms, most of them Video Games, the OC is not so much original as a character as the character the player controls and therefore rarely says anything, leaving the author free to extrapolate any personality- and sometimes appearance- he or she pleases. This kind of OC is particularly popular in the Harvest Moon fandom, where almost every fic written includes a different version of the farmer, ie, the player. (See Harvest Moon Fandom for further details.)
Contemporary Living with Original Character; This Former Farm Building's Open Plan Arrangement Creates a Practical and Flexible Environment, Writes Alison Jones
Oct 24, 2013; Byline: Alison Jones Knapp Barn at Bridges Stone in Alfrick, Worcestershire, is an attractive re-imagining of a former farm...