Occasionally you have a character designed by the creator, but for whatever reason, they weren't present in the original work; instead, they first turn up within an adaptation of the original work.
There can be a few reasons for this, but it usually comes down to either the creative team behind the adaptation requesting that the original creator make a new character or the original creator approaching said team with the idea themselves. In the former case, this may arise from the making of an original story for the adaptation, and so the original creator is called in to make doubly sure that whatever new characters they need fit within the universe of the work. It also adds a sense of legitimacy, as it's an inherent sign that the project has the creator's approval. In the latter case, it's quite possible that the idea for the character had existed prior, but the creator didn't have the opportunity to make use of them until now because they came up with them too late to easily insert into the original work or they didn't know how to implement them at the time.
Compare with Canon Foreigner, where the original character is made by someone else, and Canon Immigrant where the original character joins the canonical work.
Examples, sorted by the original medium:
- Fullmetal Alchemist:
- Hiromu Arakawa, creator of the manga, was consulted heavily for Fullmetal Alchemist (2003), which eventually developed a completely different plot from the source material.
- The second anime, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, follows the manga faithfully, except at the very start (to avoid retreading what 2003 already covered). Its first episode concerned Isaac McDougal, the Freezing Alchemist – a character created specifically for that episode by Arakawa.
- Ashido and the Forest of Menos were designed by Kubo, with the full intention of having Rukia encounter him in the manga. However, Executive Meddling meant he didn't have the time to insert the character or storyline into the manga, so the anime went ahead and put the storyline into the anime at the point Kubo had wanted it to appear in the manga.
- The 3rd Phantom story, which featured freshmen hinigami Fujimaru and Matsuri Kudo, their superior-and-adoptive-father former 5th Division Captain Seigen Suzunami, and their adoptive aunt Konoka Suzunami, can be considered semi-canonical because it's written by Tite Kubo himself.
- The "Zanpakutō Unknown Tales" arc features the zanpakutou spirits, all of which were designed by Kubo. In an interview, he stated that he would have liked to add the Zanpakutō spirits into the manga and that he'd retained control over the designs just in case he inserted them at a later date. Kazeshini has already appeared in the manga, but in a volume omake rather than the story proper. Kubo had also already drawn a slice of life comedy segment for the supplemental data books that featured Renji letting Mayuri modify his zanpakutou spirit from the original baboon/snake into a hot woman. It's the female form that appears in the filler arc.
- Katen Kyōkotsu's spirit forms are seen in the Thousand-Year Blood War arc when Shunsui squares off against Lille Barro.
- The Konjiki no Gash!! (Zatch Bell!) manga began with Kiyomaro (Kiyo) discovering Gash (Zatch)'s powers; they didn't meet a "mamono" ("mamodo") team until the 4th chapter. The anime (Konjiki no Gash Bell!!note ) stuffed what many fans believed to be a non-canonical mamono / mamodo team in the first episode, Hyde and Eido. This was reinforced by the plot point that everyone's spellbooks would tell its owners how many mamono / mamodo were left in the battle, something not shown in the anime. However, at the end of the manga when all the defeated mamono / mamodo show up to lend their powers to Gash / Zatch, Hyde is among the mamono / mamodo that appear. Apparently in the manga he was defeated by someone else offscreen, and Word of God is that despite a cameo during Megumi's concert early in the series, the animation studio and Makoto Raiku himself forgot about him all the way until the Faudo arc was going on, meaning there was nowhere else to use the team again.
- Magic Knight Rayearth's anime adaptation had quite a bit of involvement from CLAMP, namely from writer Nanase Ohkawa and main artist Mokona. The first season adds Innouva as The Dragon for Zagato, and he was also used in the Sega Saturn game. The second season (which was written entirely by Ohkawa and differs in several ways from the manga's second half) features two villains not found in the manga, Nova and Lady Debonair, who were designed by Mokona for the anime. Lady Debonair even makes an appearance (under a different name) in Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-.
- In the first animated adaptation of Guyver, Oswald Lisker — Guyver 2 — was replaced by a female version, Inspector Valcuria, designed by the original author. She showed up in the manga as a new Guyver looking just like her animated incarnation.
- Eiichiro Oda is behind the writing and character design of the tenth One Piece movie One Piece Film: Strong World, which features as its antagonist the "Gold Lion" Shiki. Shiki was referred to in the manga as the only person in recent history to ever escape One Piece's Alcatraz Impel Down, and later as part of the infamous Rocks Pirates which fought Roger and Garp.
- Other characters include Musshuru (9th movie), Don Achino (Ice Hunters filler arc), and Daddy Masterson (Loguetown filler). The latter was actually supposed to appear in the manga, but was cut because Oda wanted to reach the Grand Line on the 100th issue.
- In fact, Oda has traditionally designed at least the Big Bad of almost every movie, going all the way back to the 1998 Ganzack OVA that predates Toei Animation's ongoing anime; Shiki mainly stands out because of the continuing debates over whether he should be counted as fully Canonical (since the manga has only ever mentioned him by epithet, not name, and never alluded to any of the actual events of Strong World).
- Rebuild of Evangelion is being made by almost the same team that created the classic series. So it's not surprising that newcomer Mari Makinami was designed by the original character designer on behalf of the original director. The director has described her as the only main character who, unlike the main characters from the original series, doesn't have any aspects of his personality in her. She was later brought over to the epilogue of the original series' manga adaptation.
- Masashi Kishimoto, the creator of Naruto:
- He designed Sakura's parents, Mebuki and Kizashi, specifically for Road to Ninja. However, like all of the previous films in the franchise, Road to Ninja is non-canonical. Also, their subsequent appearances have only been in the Shippuden anime filler. In this 2014 Fuji TV Kobayashi interview, Kishimoto reveals that Sakura's unpopularity and his own antipathy towards her are the reasons why her parents are not present in the original manga or anything related to it.
- Urashiki Otsutsuki was originally created by Kishimoto for Boruto: Naruto the Movie but he had to be cut, he's still absent on the re-telling of the movie events on the Boruto manga but he would appear in the Anime adaptation of those chapters and be finally defeated in the anime-only Time-travel arc.
- A dating sim game based on the Revolutionary Girl Utena anime was released on the Sega Saturn some time after the anime's release, and it is set between the first and second story arcs. Both the scenario and the game's Big Bad, Chigusa, were respectively written and conceptualized by Kunihiko Ikuhara, the director of the anime, and he himself stated that the game is, in fact, canonical. Those who watch the game's scenario will find that Chigusa was an apparition created by Souji Mikage, the Big Bad of the second anime arc, and Akio is aware of her existence. If for nothing else, Ikuhara's flavor is woven into the script, such as the humor and Chigusa's view on women: the innocent princess Snow White versus the Evil Queen.
- Hajime Kanzaka, the writer of the novel series, wrote out some scenarios for the Slayers anime and also wrote the story for the Alternate Continuity Hourglass of Falces manga. The third anime season in particular is original material that he was involved with; in this case, he didn't care for the end result.
- However, a character poll in Japan had the third-season anime exclusive villain Valgaav in the top 10, and Kanzaka more or less acknowledges his existence along with a few others.
- Wataru Yoshizumi designed several anime-only characters for both Marmalade Boy and Ultra Maniac, the latter of which was an adaption In Name and Character Design Only. She included her designs in the Free Talk columns of both volumes, noting that she did still feel an attachment to the characters she designed herself, and pointing out some corners cut in the designs of characters she didn't provide. (Namely, the fact that Ryouko Momoi had the same eyes as Meiko Akizuki.) She also talked about how she was asked to design a grandfather for Nina in Ultra Maniac, but her original design was seen as too serious for what was intended to be a comedic character, and was redone... only for this to be overruled, the showrunner declaring that since the original author went to the trouble of designing the character, that was the design they were using.
- Akira Toriyama has done this several times over for Dragon Ball Z, designing characters for filler, movies and even video games (although it must be said that he only created their designs; the creation and writing of these characters was still handled by Toei). Such characters include Gregory, Pikkon (Paikūhan), the Grand Kai (Dai Kaiō), most of the movie villains (including Broly, who eventually became an official Canon Immigrant in Dragon Ball Super: Broly), and even contributing some to the less-popular Dragon Ball GT (designing the Robot Buddy Giru and the older versions of the main Earth-bound characters). He also designed several video game characters, including a lot of the content for Dragon Ball Online (like the antagonists Towa and Mira and the Time Patrol version of Future Trunks, ideas that would later turn up in Dragon Ball Xenoverse) as well as Chilled (the villain of Dragon Ball – Episode of Bardock), Android 21 from Dragon Ball FighterZ, Shallot, Zahha, and the Saiyan in Red from Dragon Ball Legends and Bonyu from Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot.
- Hiro Mashimanote is responsible for designing the characters and story planning of Fairy Tail's filler and film. He even acknowledges the "Key of the Starry Heavens" filler arc as canonical in the manga.note .
- Lyrical Nanoha creator Masaki Tsuzuki was the one who created the story for the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Portable fighting game adaptations. The original characters from the game have since started showing up in other Nanoha continuities written by the author, and there have been hintsnote in one of the A's Portable Sound Stages that there's a chance that they may be written into the main continuity sometime in the future.
- Homura and his minions, who were introduced in the anime version of Gensomaden Saiyuki were created by Minekura herself, but had never showed up in any of the manga series.
- Sgt. Frog: Katoyama Kiko, a human mecha designer who joined the Keron Army for a while, and also Mois' friends, girls with similar missions to judge and destroy planets, like Maya, Luz, and New, who appear in one story of the last season of the original anime, were all created by Mine Yoshizaki but have made no appearances in the manga at all, not even in small cameos.
- Princess Sailor Moon and Sailor Luna were both created by Takeuchi for Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon.
- Akai Ringo of the Tokyo Mew Mew Playstation game was designed by Ikumi Mia to fulfill the RPG convention of a healer, which helped cement her in the fandom. Unfortunately, many non-players ended up using her as a Possession Sue.
- Masami Kurumada, author of Saint Seiya, designed the Ghost Saints that appeared in the first movie. Among them, Lyra Orpheus was included in the later chapters of the manga proper, if with a different coloration and a characterization closer to his mythological inspiration.
- Liko and Roy, the protagonists of Pokémon Horizons: The Series, were designed by Ken Sugimori, who has been the lead art director for the mainline Pokémon video games since the original Game Boy titles.
- With the Human Torch caught up in a separate movie deal, Stan Lee proposed that a Robot Buddy should replace him in the The Fantastic Four (1978) animated series. Though Dave Cockrum was originally commissioned to design it, the final design for H.E.R.B.I.E. came from Jack Kirby himself, the one who designed the original Fantastic Four a decade prior. This didn't stop the poor robot from becoming the possible Trope Codifier for Replacement Scrappy.
- Several characters developed for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987), such as Bebop and Rocksteady, were originally designed by TMNT creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. Ironically, this was not enough to grant the characters Canon Immigrant status. Laird in particular was adamant about not including them in adaptations he was involved in. Eastman, on the other hand, had no issues including them into Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (IDW).
- Merle and Daryl Dixon were both created for The Walking Dead (2010) with both blessing and input from Robert Kirkman. The trope gets take to its Logical Extreme in Fear the Walking Dead, with Kirkman creating an entire new cast of characters for use in the sister series.
- Wybie was created by Neil Gaiman for the movie of Coraline. In the book, Coraline spends a lot of time on her own and most of the exposition is her internal monologue. This doesn't really work all that well in movies, so they had to give her someone to talk to, so Wybie was born.
- An odd example occurs in Star Wars. The character of Darth Bane was created by George Lucas as part of the backstory for the Sith — and was mentioned in The Phantom Menace novelization — but wasn't integrated fully into the current canon until his one episode appearance in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Under the old pre-Disney canon, Bane was canonical simply because Lucas said so, but when he sold the franchise to Disney the rules changed and it was only by making an on-screen appearance that Bane was restored to canonicity.
- Steve Shanning in the movie version of Phantoms. Author Dean Koontz wrote the script for the movie adaptation of his own novel. In the novel, Bryce and Stu are accompanied by several Mauve Shirt and Red Shirt deputies when they go up to Snowfield. Making a concession to the film's runtime, Koontz combined the various deputies (Tal, Frank, Gordy, etc.) into the Composite Character of Steve. The characters from the book he has the most in common with are Tal (being Bryce's best friend and second in command), Frank (he has a mustache and his FBI background mirrors Frank being ex-Army) and Jake (he dies first).
- Similarly, FBI agents Wilson and Hawthorne are themselves Composite Characters (or at least Suspiciously Similar Substitutes) not only of Flyte's publicist Burt Sandler but also of Project Skywatch members Isley and Arkham. Like Sandler, they're the ones who inform Flyte about Snowfield, and they otherwise fill the same role in the story as Isley and Arkham.
- Back to the Future: Another time travel scientist named Professor Marcus Irving is introduced in the comic book series co-written by the films' co-creator Bob Gale.
- In Kim Newman's Anno Dracula series, one of the major recurring characters, journalist Kate Reed, is a character originally created by Bram Stoker in early drafts of Dracula but removed from the published version.
- Channel 4's 1998 Setting Update of Through The Looking Glass includes Ian Richardson as the Wasp in the Wig, a character Lewis Carroll removed when John Tenniel protested it was impossible to draw.
- Neil Gaiman himself created Vulcan in the TV adaptation of American Gods, inspired by seeing the gun culture of the US South.
- Honorverse's Victor Cachat initially was just an original character created by David Weber's friend and collaborator Eric Flint for a spin-off short story (which also gave the Weber's own one-shot character Anton Zilwicky a much expanded role). Soon, though, as Flint effectively became a Weber's equal co-author, Cachat joined the main cast in earnest.
- In L. Frank Baum's Land of Oz series we have Trot and Cap'n Bill, who previously appeared in two of Baum's non-Oz fantasy books, The Sea Fairies and Sky Island, part of a series Baum created after he attempted to quit writing Oz books. However the series was a flop, and with financial issues mounting, Baum was forced to keep writing Oz books until his death. In The Scarecrow of Oz he struck a compromise by having Trot and Cap'n Bill end up in Oz and become permanent residents.
- In Harry Potter, the book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is an in-universe school textbook that students at Hogwarts use. Said textbook isn't exactly important to any of the many plots inside the story and actually is mentioned just a few times in filler conversations between different characters. Newt Scamander is also mentioned but he never appears in any of the books in person. Midway through the series, the real life version of the book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was published with proceeds going to charity, and just like its in-universe counterpart, it is a directory of creatures where the lore is expanded, with no plot whatsoever. Given all this, when it was time to adapt the book to a full feature film franchise, J. K. Rowling decided she was gonna be the writer of these new films and so she created a completely original story along with plenty of new characters to appear alongside the now finally fully developed Newt Scamander.
- Trapped in a Dating Sim: The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs: Louise Sara Rault, introduced in the Alzer Republic arc, is original to the Light Novel continuity and never appeared in the original Web Serial Novel.
- While Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse have been clear regarding the fact that the Lost video game "Via Domus" is non-canonical, some elements of the game were created by the pair and were originally intended to be in the show before being thrown into the game instead. However, despite this claim, some of these "official" elements have ended up conflicting with the show's later seasons. The biggest example is the "Incident Room", the room behind the concrete wall in the hatch. The room was intended to be shown in the series but wasn't, and the design was given to the developers to be used in the game.
- However, this room ended up conflicting with the show's portrayal of the actual "Incident". In the game, the room contains a large, busted generator with electricity flowing through it, implying the "Incident" was some sort of electromagnetic generator failure. However, the show's portrayal of the "Incident" was much different: it occurred while the hatch was still under construction, involved a drill hitting a pocket of electromagnetic energy, and possibly Juliet detonating a hydrogen bomb over that pocket. No room or generator was involved.
- Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (Boom! Studios) has the Dark Ranger, a "new" member of the Dino Charge Rangers. The character is based off of Deathryuger/Kyoryu Navy, a character who was left out when Zyuden Sentai Kyoryuger was adapted as Dino Charge; what makes this interesting is that there's evidence Saban was going to adapt the characternote , but that never happened for whatever reason.
- In fact, a lot of elements originating in Power Rangers were designed by Toei and/or PLEX note , such as the Zyu2 MOTW's, the Titanium Ranger, the Phantom Rangers, and the Samurai Mega Modes, to name a few.
- Douglas Adams always added things and changed continuities in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1978). Since the basic work has seen light in eight media — radio drama (which came first), LPs* , novels (which added Hotblack Desiato and the Disaster Area stunt ship), stage productions (which introduced the dish of the day), TV series (which added the food on the Vogon ship and the important detail that Arthur had been wearing his bathrobe the whole time), video games (which added lots of backstory and the Catchphrase "Show No Tea to the door"), a comic, and a film — this example is particularly famous. Although the film was made after his death, most of the plot-altering elements added to the film (the character Humma Kavula, the Point-of-View gun, the little things that pop up whenever you have an idea on the Vogon homeworld, etc.) were thought up by Adams himself.
- In Transformers fandom, this manages to mix with the Merchandise-Driven nature of the franchise to form an extreme case... even if a character doesn't have so much as a cameo anywhere in the Expanded Universe, if a toy is made, it's implied that that character is out there somewhere. Not that Doom-Lock or Hardtop will ever drop us a line or anything, but we know they're somewhere doing their thing. For instance, in 2006, seven years after Beast Wars ended, a comic came out showing what all the characters who were in the Beast Wars toy line but never showed up in the show were doing. Also, with the number of Promoted Fanboys involved with TF production, never count out any of them when it comes to getting their day in the sun. Doom-Lock was scheduled to appear in the Transformers: Energon comic, but Dreamwave went kaput before he could. Hardtop has since appeared in some comics and one text story. The IDW Comics series, on the other hand, has a gazillion characters of varying importance who have been toy-only - since 1985.
- There are over 50 Generation 4 My Little Pony characters who have never been included in Friendship is Magic or its Expanded Universe. Only ten times have such characters gone on to appear in one or more actual works: Blossomforth in the show, Sweetcream Scoops, Sugar Grape, Cherry Spices, Barber Groomsby, Tealove, Bumblesweet, and Diamond Rose in IDW Publishing's Friendship is Magic and in one case Micro-series comics, and Lovestruck and Forsythia in Gameloft's My Little Pony game.
- Katawa Shoujo has Saki Enomoto and Rika Katayama, two "DLC love interests" announced as an April Fools' prank by the development team, with mock screenshots and personality profiles. Ultimately, they were never even mentioned in the final game, but they became Ensemble Dark Horses anyway.
- The King of Fighters: Nameless was introduced by SNK in 2002: Unlimited Match as a Moveset Clone and effective stand-in for K9999, who had ended up on SNK's shitlist for being almost a complete duplicate of AKIRA's Tetsuo Shima to such a degree that they could have been sued. A 2019 report from a fan who have visited SNK has confirmed that for all intents and purposes, the former has outright replaced the latter, and "the one replaced by Nameless" isn't coming back. Ever. As K9999.
- Warcraft 2016:
- The most extreme example is perhaps Alodi, introduced in the manga as the very first Guardian, he wasn't even mentioned in World of Warcraft until he got an Artifact named after him in Legion, and he (or rather she) was the one who reveals that Medivh brought the orcs into Azeroth.
- Similarly, Durotan and Draka's first canonical appearance was in the novel Lord of the Clans, which came out just before Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos.
- Orgrim is an interesting example. In the Orc Campaign (which was the canonical ending for the first Warcraft) the player character becomes the Warchief. In the second game and onwards the orc that did this was named Orgrim Doomhammer. Depending on your interpretation of canonicity, he's either the player character of Orcs and Humans (which would disqualify him from this trope), or was retconned in.
- The Quake series features a few of these:
- Quake III: Arena introduces UAC Marines Phobos and Crash, the latter of whom was a mentor to Doomguy. However, these characters have yet to appear in any installments of the Doom series proper.
- Quake Champions features a character named Galena, who—based on her bearing the Serpent Riders insignia on her armor—appears to have originated from the same universe as the Heretic and Hexen games (which were published by Quake developer id Software). However, because of the copyright disputes between id Software and Raven Software, it is unlikely she will ever make a proper debut in that series. Or that Corvus, the Player Character of the aforementioned games, will ever make it into QC.
- Steven Universe: Save the Light features two characters, Hessonite and Squaridot, both of whom were created with the assistance of the writing crew of the series proper. Though it's implied Hessonite is an existing character from the show, just a very minor one.
- Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution features Mecha-Naruto, who was created by Masashi Kishimoto himself, and it was brought into the Naruto Shippuden anime for a Filler arc made to promote the game. Despite the arc airing around the time of the game's release, Mecha-Naruto's origin and storyline had to be slightly altered to better fit the anime, but not the canonical continuity.
- The Aurigan Reach from Harebrained Schemes' BattleTech was created by Jordan Weissman, one of the founders of FASA and thus one of the original creators of the BattleTech setting. It would eventually become canonical through the House Arano (The Aurigan Coalition) Sourcebook for the tabletop game.
- Everything used by the Empire of Grand Cathay for Total War: Warhammer III is this, as this is the first time Cathay has appeared in even a remotely important manner. Games Workshop is working directly with Creative Assembly to create the new Cathay roster so that it can be backported into Warhammer: The Old World once that game releases.
- The comic book continuation of Darkwing Duck featured a story called "The Terror of the Time Turtle", which was written by original series creator Tad Stones and introduces a new villain called Chronoduck.
- The "Rebreather" diver ghost in So This Is Basically... Danny Phantom was designed and voiced by Butch Hartman to depict an average fight scene in the series.
- The video game based on The Last Kids on Earth, The Staff of Doom, has Malondre the Queen of Slime Monsters as its main villain. She was created for the game by Max Brallier and Scott Peterson, who are also involved in the TV show, and Brallier is even the author of the books both are based on.
- The designs for Somnambula and Prince Hisan in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic were given to the artists of the comic book adaptation by Hasbro so they could be introduced in the comic's expanded universe before appearing in the show proper.
- Sticks the Badger, a Sonic the Hedgehog character, was created specifically for the Sonic Boom sub-franchise, but Sega was involved in her development. As a result, she is considered one of their characters; she appears in media created for the Japanese Sonic Channel website, and the Sega-developed Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games series. She is name-dropped in Sonic Frontiers, which Ian Flynn has stated was so that she could potentially fully cross over into the main series.
- The comic book tie-in to Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters was written by two of the series' showrunners and introduced new characters like the Mantoids and the Extreme Hazard Unit. They teased in interviews that a villain from the comic would also appear on the show, but it was abruptly cancelled and none of its characters made it to the show.