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  • Chef Brian of Ctrl+Alt+Del came about because author Tim Buckley was blind drunk one night, and thought Brian's Word-Salad Humor was funny in his drunken stupor, so he posted it. The next morning, Buckley was mortified at the comic and apologized to his fans for it, but the fans liked Brian so much that they encouraged Buckley to "drink more." Brian eventually became a recurring one-off gag character with Negative Continuity.
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  • Fluffmodeus in Something*Positive was introduced out of spite, but has actually been a well-received character.
  • Maxim, the Bishōnen Jägermonster of Girl Genius, was originally created as a joke. But he was found so funny that he was added to the comic as-is.
    • The same goes for the entire Jager race. In the first scene with Klaus, there was a big empty space next to him, so Phil drew a scruffy-looking soldier with sharp teeth.
  • The Cyantian Chronicles: This page of the comic ''Akaelae'' The author posted this comment after speculation on who the involved characters were.
    • Also, Cesilee's Diary was originally supposed to be only 6 strips long. It ended up far longer and was eventually combined with the former primary comic, Campus Safari.
  • Vaarsuvius of The Order of the Stick was originally intended to have a definite gender. The fans did not immediately get this, and Rich Burlew decided to leave it ambiguous for laughs. Nowadays, V's Ambiguous Gender is both a Running Gag and in some places a dramatic plot point.
  • A coloring error caused Precocious' Yvette to suddenly appear darker for a few days (compare her in this strip to her the next day). The author decided that she looked better this way and kept the new "dark Yvette"
  • El Goonish Shive:
  • A one-panel example in Concerned: author Chris Livingston was in the middle of making a strip when his wife made the off-the-cuff request that, at some point of the comic's run, protagonist Gordon Frohman use the expression, "Eep". Livingston promptly put the expression directly into the panel he was working on at that exact moment — thus having Gordon say "Eep" in response to getting blasted in the chest with a shotgun.
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  • Domain Tnemrot: The referee was never meant to be named and would just be a background character. Fans loved him, so he was given a bigger role.
  • Many elements of Digger, including major characters and plot points, were invented on the spur of the moment.
  • When the Commander and Jonesy went to the future in Manly Guys Doing Manly Things, the chaos left behind in the present was originally just going to be generic chaos, but then Twitch Plays Pokémon Red came out and Coelasquid was inspired to make a homage to it instead.
  • The Helpers from Pandora's Tale originally had a different name. The name was dropped because the author didn't like how it sounded, and "Helper" was used as a placeholder, but ended up sticking because it sounded like politically correct corporate jargon.
  • Knights of Buena Vista does this In-Universe. Mary wants to give her Player Character policing skills, which is called "copper", but she wrote that for hair color, so others think this character is a redhead. Mary shrugs and goes with it.
  • Stand Still, Stay Silent: A major character dying in Adventure I resulted in them not getting their birthday revealed when the comic's author made up her mind about the main characters' birthdays at the beginning of Adventure II. When asked about the dead character's birthday at a later point, the author picked a date, forgetting that it was already another major character's birthday. When this was pointed out, the author decided to just let the two characters have the same birthday. Those two characters just happen to be a pair that was getting along quite well when the dead one was still alive.

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