(This by the way, isn't an original idea. It's just been changed to suit the Kingdom Hearts fandom! Hope you enjoy it!)
The Kingdom Hearts Mary-Sue Litmus Test
A quick test to check if your original characters are too…Mary-Sue-ish…Answer all the questions honestly now! Just keep on adding the points and we'll see what you get in the end!
Part 1 – What's in a Name?
1.) Is the character named after you? (This can be your first name, middle name, or the name you use in chatrooms, your name in a different language, say, Japanese.) If so, stop now. Put your pencil down and turn in your test. You have inserted yourself into Kingdom Hearts and are writing a Mary-Sue. Sorry to be the one to tell you, dude.
2.) Is the character's name an unusual spelling of a more common name or word[1
3.) Is the character's name unusual in another way?
- A female with a male-sounding name[1
- A noun or adjective not normally used for a name? (Lol, Cloud. ) [1
- Does the character have a really cool name that you wish you had[1
- Does your character's name contain an "x" in it[1
4.) Is the character's name in the title of the story or is the title otherwise a description of the character? (i.e. "The Girl of His Dreams")[5
5.) Does the character have more than one name? (i.e. a nickname or a pseudonym that other characters use to refer to the character)[1
6.) Did you spend more than a day looking for just the right name[1
- If it is a Japanese name, does it mean something significant to the story[2
7.) Have you considered naming your pet or child the character's name[1 (This only applies to the character in question.)
Part 2 - Getting Physical
8.) Is the character the same gender as you[1
9.) Is the character from the same racial group as you[1
10.) Is the character a teenager or in her/his early twenties[1
11.) Does the character LOOK like s/he is a teenager or in her/his early twenties for no apparent reason [2?
- For a magical or special scientific reason[2
- That you plan on making a plot point later[1
12.) Is the character the age you would like to be[1
13.) Is the character beautiful or incredibly handsome[1
14.) Does Sora/Riku/Kairi find the character highly attractive[1
- Do the other regulars see him/her as a threat because of this[1
15.) Does the character have an unusual eye color for no apparent reason[3
- Will this be a plot point later[1
16.) Does the character have a really nice feature that you describe more than once in the first two paragraphs of the story? (This only counts if said feature is exceptional, not when part of a general description) [1
17.) Does the character have an awesome accent that you don't[1
18.) Does the character have a scar or a strange marking that is noticed by another character, but does not actually detract from his/her appearance? (You know, like Leon's scar…) [1
19.) Is the character blind, deaf, mute, or any combination of the three[1
- Is s/he no longer blind, deaf and/or mute by the end of the story/series or else dead? (If yes, add 3 points. If no, subtract 1.)
20.) Is the character otherwise physically disabled[If yes, subtract 2 pts. And anyone who tries to say that their character is disabled because of their intense beauty can just die now. Please.
- Is the character no longer disabled at the end of the series, or else dead[1
21.) Is the character mentally disabled? (Meaning actually mentally disabled, not just dense like Sora.) [Subtract 2
- Does the character have any telekinetic, telepathic, or other psychic powers despite and/or because of this disability[3
22.) Is the character overweight? (And not "Oh wow, I shouldn't have eaten that ice cream, lol I'm all fat now!" but actually overweight) [Subtract 2. Have to admit, haven't seen one of these yet.
- Is this remarked upon by another character, who is not motivated by jealousy[Subtract 2
- Is the character no longer overweight by the end of the series[4
Part 3 - Now, It's Personal
23.) Is the character the long-lost child or descendent or sibling or close relative of any canon character[1
- Of Sora[2
- Of Riku or Kairi[2
- Of anyone in Organization XIII or of any baddies working for the side of Darkness[1
- Of another original character for whom you intend to write another story or even another series[1
24.) Was the character adopted or did he/she otherwise live with people who were not his/her parents as a child[1
Add points for each aspect seen somewhere during your character's life:
- abandoned by caregivers[1
- born or forced into slavery[1
- born or raised in extreme poverty[1
- sole survivor of a calamity[2
- physical abuse[2
- illegitimate birth[2
-will later be a parent of an illegitimate child [1 pt for each child
25.) Does the character suffer from guilt about something terrible that s/he did in the past?[1
- Do the other characters eventually convince her/him that it was not his/her fault?[1
26.) Does the character share your religious beliefs?[1
27.) Did the character have an unusual birth or unusual experience in early infancy? (i.e. abducted, placed in a basket and set afloat, visited by The Three Wise Guys, etc.) [1
28.) Does the character have a twin, a clone, or a sibling of the same gender[2
28a.) About whom you plan on writing another story later[2
29.) Does the character have a very good singing voice[2
- Or play a musical instrument amazingly well[1
- The guitar or piano, for instance[add an extra 2
30.) Does the character have better taste in music than you do?[1
(For example, does your character own CDs that you think sophisticated people should own, even though you've never really listened to that kind of music yourself?)
31.) Does the character do what you do for fun or profit[1
(This includes having the same job you have, or a job you would like to have someday, or having a job that sounds like a lot of fun even though you know nothing about it.)
32.) Is the character nobility of any type[3
- That she/he does not originally know about?[3
33.) Does everyone end up liking the character (at least among the regulars that you like)[1
Part 4 - Special Abilities and Super Powers
34.) Is the character a time traveler[1
- A dimension traveler? (i.e. comes from the real world?) [1
35.) Is the character smarter than "the smart one" amongst the team[1
- And is your character smarter than someone like Zexion, who isn't part of the innermost circle but everyone can acknowledge their supreme smartness[2
36.) Does the character possess martial arts training[1
- And is able to beat on Riku/Cloud/Leon[1
- And DOES beat on Riku/Cloud/Leon because they made some comment about the character not looking strong enough[1
37.) Does the character have telekinesis or telepathy? (Twins count.)[2
38.) Does the character just "know things" for no apparent reason?[1
- And is always right[2
39.) Does your character have connections to the Darkness and can sense Darkness's presence[2
40.) Can the character heal simply with a touch and/or thought?[1
41.) Do animals (especially fuzzy ones) instinctively like the character[2
(Subtract 2 points if the animals are of the creepy, non-attractive sort)
42.) Does your character have a Keyblade of any sort[3
-Any magic-like Organixation XIII type weapon[2
Part 5 – Can You Feel the Love Tonight?
43.) Does the character fall in love with Sora/Riku/ any of the regular characters[1
-Because you love Sora/Riku/ any of the regular characters[1
44.) Does the character fall in love with another original character?[1
-With whom -you- would like to fall in love[1
45.) Does the story end with the character's wedding[2
Part 6 - Getting to Know You (and Your Character)
46.) Would you like to be friends with the character if you met in real life[1
47.) Do you think everyone who reads the story should automatically like the character and want to be friends with the character because they're so totally awesome[1
48.) If someone tells you he/she doesn't like your character, do you take it as a personal attack[1
49.) Do you ever pretend, just to yourself, that you are the character, with the same strengths and abilities[1
50.) If someone calls your character a Mary Sue, do you immediately assume they're jealous of you[3
Part 7 - The Plot and Its Pitfalls
51.) Do you introduce the character in the first paragraph of the story?[2
- In the first sentence[1
52.) Do you tell the story from the character's point of view (in the 1st person)[1
53.) Does the character meet with Sora/Riku/Kairi or the Organization, and after a few tense pages of plot, become friends with them[2
54.) Does the character manage to develop a friendship with an otherwise villainous character, and through this friendship, reform the other character?[2
- Does the villain become evil again after your character dies/gets hurt, but retains some last vestige of goodness from his/her interaction with the character, evidenced in one selfless action at the end of the story? (Wow.) [4
55.) Does the character save the day and/or another character's life?[3
-Through magical/mystical intervention?[1
- Through almost dying?[2
- Does everyone go into mourning[1
- Is s/he resurrected by the end of the story[4
- Will s/he be resurrected in the sequel[4
56.) If a time traveler, does your character return to the future[If yes, but unintentionally, add 1. If yes, and intentionally, subtract 1.
- If a dimension traveler, do they return to the real world[If If yes, but unintentionally, add 1. If yes, and intentionally, subtract 1.
57.) Do you plan to write at least one more story revolving around this character?[2
Pencils down, dudes! Hand the tests in and let's see how you did.
0-20 points: By Kingdom Hearts, We Have an Original Character!
Congratulations! You've succeeded in creating a totally original character! You have the stamina, the perseverance, and most of all, the willpower to keep from projecting yourself into the story. Keep up the good work!
21-35 points: Hopeless Romantics, and Other Misdemeanors
Most OC authors fall into this category. These authors either cannot resist the temptation of self- insertion or slightly tweak their character to make them "better". However, this does not mean that your character is a Mary-Sue, only that he/she leans in that direction. With care, your character can still be a realistic, enjoyable OC, but still get her guy and live happily ever after. Huzzah!
36-50 points: Crossing the Line
I regret to inform you that your OC has crossed over into the Dark Side. You have a Mary Sue on your hands. Don't worry, though, the process is reversible! A skilled and experienced beta reader is probably your best bet, as long as you don't mind constructive criticism. As an alternate method, make a list of the good traits your character possesses, then red- line a few and replace them with bad ones. Intentional bad habits can be daunting, especially for beginning writers, but with a steady hand and a careful eye, you can conquer Mary Sue.
51 points: Um, dude. . .
Sorry, kid, but no amount of editing is gonna save THIS puppy. Best advice would be to scrap it and try again, unless you've intentionally set out to create a Mary Sue. In that case, mission accomplished.