So You Want to Make a KHR OC?
A mostly complete guide to making OCs that will fit into the KHR canon
Welcome and let me congratulate you on the brilliant decision to read this guide. Perhaps you recently got into Katekyo Hitman Reborn! and want to make a fan character (or OC) for the series. Perhaps you've already made one (or twenty), but feel you could do better. Perhaps you have found your OC(s) discussed on various Tumblr blogs and want to revise your character(s) so that doesn't happen again. Perhaps you are simply curious about the show and have an actual social life, so that dedicating so much of your time to researching Katekyo Hitman Reborn! is both silly and unfeasible. Whatever the reason, this guide should tell you must everything you need to know.
This is NOT a Mary Sue test! As always with guides to "creative" works, this guide must be taken with a grain of salt. In the end, what matters the most is that you create a character that you enjoy working with. However, if it bothers you that much that other people think they are not well made, perhaps you do not like them as much as you could. Feel free to peruse this guide at your leisure and pick and choose what advice you would like to follow. To skip around, please refer to the table of contents.
Remember: "Sue" traits are like spices. Put a few in, and you have an interesting character; too much and you get a disgusting mess.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
A. Important Considerations
B. Flames of the Sky
Ba. Storm Flames
Bb. Sky Flames
Bc. Sun Flames
Bd. Lightning Flames
Be. Rain Flames
Bf. Cloud Flames
Bg. Mist Flames
C. Other Canon Flames
D. Made-Up Flames
V. Primo Era Considerations
VI. Other Considerations
Last time, we talked about the design of your OC, which is important in that it can get your character an immediate 'fail' grade if done improperly. This time, we will be discussing flames, which, while unique to the Katekyo Hitman Reborn! universe, are nonetheless a very central part of OC design. Many people use flames as a sort of personality test—or worse, for shipping. As mentioned in the personality section, however, this is not the case. Flames indicate a job (normally for guardians, but it is a good idea to use this template when deciding what flames to give a character no matter what their rank), not how a character acts or who they can be romantically involved with.
A. Important Considerations
Before you pick a specific flame type to give your OC, there are several things to keep in mind.
Aa. Flames are passed down genetically.
• Bianchi herself says so in the Future Arc, when she tells Gokudera that since they are siblings, they have Storm flame
o This means at least one of their parents have Storm Flames
• If your OC has parents or siblings in the canon, they MUST NOT have a different flame then they do
• In the case of parents with two different flame types, pick one or the other
o Do NOT create a 'new' flame that is combination of the two
o A good general rule to follow, going off of the example of Bianchi and Gokudera, is that it is passed down from the father
Ab. It is rare to have one flame, let alone several.
• The manga and anime both state this multiple times—if you don't have strong enough flames in the Millifiore, you don't get a box.
• People do not have access to all seven flames but use one for convenience. Gokudera's Sistema CAI works BECAUSE no one else has the ability to use 5 flames. It makes him unpredictable.
• Yes, there are several canon characters that subvert this rule
Who has a ridiculous amount and that's what gives him his edge
If everyone had 5 flame types, he would cease to effective or surprising
o Lal Mirch
She had pure rain flames before her broken curse, which caused it to split into mist and cloud
She cannot access all three at once and must exert herself to purify mist and cloud into rain at the cost of her health
Your character should NOT be cursed
He doesn't use his Mist flames more than once
• Don't use canon as an excuse to break rules stated by canon.
o There is a thing called 'reasonable suspension of disbelief' (which we will go into more in a later chapter).
o Inserting a character into the story does NOT break suspension of disbelief, but said non-existing characters breaking STATED RULES does.
o Experimentation does not qualify as an explanation for multiple flame usage either.
• If your character MUST have multiple flames:
o Limit yourself to TWO
o Seriously consider making the second MUCH WEAKER
Ac. It takes practice to be able to access flames.
• This is why the training period before Melone Base is so long
• Lal Mirch is astounded by how easily Yamamoto access his
• Your OC needs a reasonable amount of training time (longer than the main characters at least) before they can use enough energy to make a physical flame appear
Ad. Flames were not discovered until TYL!.
• This is why no one save for illusionists and Tsuna can use them through the Varia arc
• Your OC absolutely cannot break these rules, unless s/he is an illusionists (this is discussed in the Mist Flames section)
• However, in the manga and anime set AFTER the Future Arc, flames are fair game for any character
Ae. They did not have flames in during the Primo Era.
• Again, they were not discovered as usable things until the TYL! Arc.
Af. Never do something just to match whoever your OC is paired with.
• No one wants to date their opposite gender twin
• Yes, your OC CAN have the same flame type as whoever they are paired with, but it is NOT required and it should be for a better reason than "Hibari has Cloud Flames so his girlfriend should, too."
B. Flames of the Sky
We're going to go over each of the flame separately. Included with a description of abilities and jobs will be a list of weapons and box animals. We'll discuss this in greater detail in Part III, but for now, just keep these in mind. If you have a character with the same flame type as a canon character, try to avoid using the same weapons and animals as the canon characters—especially if you intend them to be shipped with someone with the same flames. Of course, common weapons, such as guns or knives, are okay. What you really need to say away from is weapons like Sistema CAI or specialized swordsmanship.
* This is a one-of-a-kind box and cannot be replicated.
Ba. Storm Flames
Canon Weapons: dynamites, Sistema CAI, bow and arrows, bombs, various firearms, knives, wires, scythes
Canon Box Animals: cat/leopard, mink, bats, liger, t-rex*, stag beetles, serpent
Role: "Continuously at the heart of the attack, the furious Storm that never rests."
When most people think of Storm Users, the first thing that comes to mind is Gokudera. As such, many OCs with Storm flames are hot-tempered and impatient. However, just looking at the rest of the canon cast can show OC creators the variety in Storm Flames. In addition to Gokudera, we have Belphegor—he might be insane, but is generally upbeat and even-tempered. Even more different than that is Fon, who is downright pleasant and always kind.
As is true for all flames, Storm flames don't dictate personality, but a job within their family that is usually tied in with their fighting style. To be a Storm Guardian is to be the center of offense. This does not mean that your OC always needs to be the first to attack, but when they choose to, their attacks are very, very offensively inclined. As you can tell by the weapons list above, most storm weapons would not just hit the opponent in one place, but in several.
Within familial relationships, storm users have more than all but the sky, as storms can be connected to the majority of the flames. All they might not be best friends, storm users can connect with sky, cloud, rain, and occasionally mist. Most of the time, their worst relationship is with sun flame users, as storms have the tendency to block out the sun.
A storm flame's literal ability is degeneration, which causes an object to disintegrate at varying degrees, depending on the purity and strength of the storm flame in question.
Bb. Sky Flames
Canon Weapons: gloves, cape, pistols, bullwhip, pickaxe, staff
Canon Box Animals: lion, liger, dragon*, turtle, horse/pegasus
Role: "Rain, Storm, Cloud, Sun, Mist, and Lightning, he influences all of them. He understands and accepts all of them."
Due to the nature of the series, Sky Flame users have the most variety in attitudes in personality in OCs. Although we have Tsuna and Dino, who are both benevolent bosses, we also have Byakuran and Xanxus who…aren't so much. For most of the series, at any rate.
The job of Sky Flame users is to bring a family together. Whether this means literally, as seeker who finds all of them when they are needed, or as a person that just helps everyone get along can be different from character to character. There is no distinct fighting style for Sky Flame users, and in fact most families seem to save allowing their Sky users to fight for the very last event. Sky weapons do not appear to have a common element, nor do their users appear to share a common style.
Sky Flames are usually thought of as the automatic flame for bosses because they have a relationship with every other flame. While this does appear to be true, based on the families we are shown, this does not always have to be the case. For example, both Bianchi and Gokudera have storm flames. As their father is a mafia boss and the only parent they have in common, it is rational to assume that their father, though a boss, is also a storm flame user. If you want to create your own family, try shaking things up a bit by using a different flame for the leader.
A Sky Flame's ability is 'harmony,' which for some reason translates to petrification. Do not attempt to give your Sky OC another ability based on the idea of harmony, for every single use of the flame itself in the series turns the opposing force into stone.
Note that Sky Flames are the absolute rarest of flames. Seriously think before giving your OC Sky Flames—and certainly do not if you insist upon your character having more than one.
In addition, the only canon instance of Snow flame was in fact a Sky flame in disguise. I don't suggest using the video game canon as a template for your OC unless he or she exists within the video game canon themselves. Try to avoid giving this as excuse to give your OC Snow flames.
Bc. Sun Flames
Canon Weapons: boxing, muay thai, guns, Melone Base*, broom
Canon Box Animals: kangaroo, peacock, lizard, rhinoceros, spiders
Role: "Destroying the misfortune that attacks the Family with their own body, they become the Sun that brightly shines upon an area."
We spoke about different Sun Flame users in the last chapter, but it bears repeating: Not all Sun Users are boisterous and flashy. Ryohei and Lussuria are, but, on the other end of the spectrum, we also have characters like Reborn and Daisy.
The job of a Sun Flame user is to use their body to protect and aid the family. Contrary to popular belief, this does not mean that your Sun OC is required to use some sort of martial art to fight. Although that is an easier way to narrow down the list of fighting abilities for your OC, you do not have to go along with that idea. For example, Reborn is a Sun Flame users that uses pistols to fight—but he still uses his body by willingly harming himself for the good of his family. For example, Reborn dislocates his shoulder purposely for a shot in his first adult appearance. Sun Users also make for natural healers, provided that they have a flame strong enough to access.
Sun Flame users most easily get along with Sky users and Cloud users. They normally, however, have a not-so-good relationship with Storm users.
A Sun Flame's ability is regeneration. This means that application of the flame can heal wounds—and in some cases, even grow back hair and fingernails. The strength of the healing is dependent on strength of the flame and also the range of the transmitter being used for healing.
Bd. Lightning Flames
Canon Weapons: grenades, horns, shield, helmet, parabolas, billiard cue/balls
Canon Box Animals: bull, manta ray, wolves, sea snakes
Role: "To draw damage to himself and away from the rest of the Family, serving as a lightning rod."
Lighting Flames (also called Thunder Flames by some people) are often the most ignored, as there does not appear to be an overarching personality type. Unlike Sky Flames, however, Lightning Flames are not considered rare or powerful either, so their appeal is very low. Lighting Users range from obnoxious to passionate, and many of the quieter personalities can be found within this flame type as well.
The job for the Lighting Flame users is that of defending the rest of the group. The great thing about Lighting Flames is that they can be used for both offense and defense—generally defense when others in the group are being threatened and offense when they are on their own. Sometimes they can even do both at the same time—Gamma's billiard balls can hurt people and eject a sort of barrier. The versatility of these flames easily makes up for their lack of extreme ability.
Lightning Flame Users do not seem to have a particularly strong connection to any other flame users, except perhaps in the case of Storm, and even that is not always a constant. One can presume, however, that when they get along with Storm Users, they may also agree with Cloud and Rain, just as in the case of Storm Users.
The ability of Lightning Flames is that of 'hardening.' Although not an immensely impressive ability, it does serve to up both the offensive and defensive capabilities of any weaponry or shielding being used at the time of coating.
Be. Rain Flames
Canon Weapons: swords (Shigure Soen style), riding crop, rifle, metal edge, shotgun
Canon Box Animals: swallow, dog, shark, kraken, sea shells, shonisaurus*, dolphin, centipede
Role: "To become a blessed shower that settles conflict and washes everything away."
Rain flames are another less common (although not exactly rare) choice for KHR! OCs. This is because, like lightning, it is hard to apply the 'flames dictate personality' rule to rain flames users. In the series, we have the very cheerful and easy going Yamamoto, the angry and incredibly loud Squalo, and the bratty and childish Bluebell.
Rain flame users are supposed to be able to ease conflict, but as you can tell—like in regular human beings—they don't always have the personality to fit the part. However, settling conflicts does not have to be done as a 'calming agent' a la Momiji from Fruits Basket. Squalo, for instance, settles conflicts by intimidating people into submission. So long as your OC can keep a conflict down, whether within their family or in inter-family relations, they fit the role no matter what personality they have. In battle, most rain weapons are bladed, the better to get the tranquilizing agent of rain flames into the opposition's system.
Rain flame users get along best with Cloud and Sky flame users, as well as the occasional storm user.
The ability of the rain flame is that of 'tranquility,' meaning that contact with the flame causes a sort of numbness that slows down (and occasionally stops) movement. In some cases, rain flame is also shown to be able to temporarily put out other flames, such as in the case of Yamamoto's rain sparrow killing the flames on Nosaru's flight boots.
In addition to this, some users of Rain flames have shown to be able to use snow-like attributes. If you absolutely must have snow powers, consider giving your OC rain flames and an interest in developing this part of their abilities.
Bf. Cloud Flames
Canon Weapons: tonfa, handcuffs, whip
Canon Box Animals: hedgehog, bear, velociraptor*
Role: "To be the aloof, drifting Cloud that protects the Family from an independent standpoint, and whom nothing can ever bind."
Next to Sky, Cloud flames are the single most popular flame—perhaps even more so. This is because the series resident 'bad ass' is the first person in the series to be revealed to have these flames. However, one should keep in mind that 'bad assery' is not the defining characteristic of these flames. Kikyo himself is calm and friendly. In fact, if you're out to create a 'badass' OC, it would be best if you did so with another flame, so that you actually develop an ability and persona that are badass instead of simply relying on the fanon that Cloud flames automatically make a character awesome.
The job of those with Cloud flames is to be separate from the rest. This does not mean that your character has to be emotionally distant—far from it! What it does mean is that they should work jobs or skills that, should the family come to some sort of difficulty, means they would remain functional after a centered attack. Cloud flame users are also frequently give the job of informers. As they don't need to stay with the group, they are allowed more autonomy to go places and discover new information. Due to the small amount of Cloud users in the series, it is difficult to get a grasp on a frequent weapon or strategy used by these kinds of people.
Cloud flame users get along best with Sky, Rain, and Sun. When things get tough, they can also often be seen helping and aiding Storm users.
The ability of Cloud flames is that of propagation, a sort of combination of cloning and growth. This makes Cloud flames good for defense and offense, though not to the same extent as Lightning. Unlike in the case of many other flames, contact with the Cloud flames does not seem to cause any sort of reaction (although the theory could be explored). Instead, a weapon needs to be imbued with the flame to use this as a combat ability.
Bg. Mist Flames
Canon Weapons: trident, monocle, scythe, scepter, deck of cards, puppet, swords
Canon Box Animals: owl, sea slugs, moth, starfish
Role: "Creating something from nothing, and nothing from something; thus bewildering the enemy, to render the Family's true form intangible with visions of deceit."
At the very end of the rainbow, we have Mist flames. Often times, OCs with mysterious 'troll' personalities are assigned to this particular type. This is supported by canon more often than other fanon traits, but one must be careful to not make this their sole trait. Mukuro enjoys tricking people, but he isn't goofy. Fran is generally straight forward and sarcastic. Genkishi, too, uses his illusions to fool the opponent but certainly doesn't seem to do so only to make them look stupid—at least not without his Hell Ring activated—and instead uses it to get the upper hand in battle. The whole of illusions is to lie, but that doesn't mean all Mist users are consummate liars. Various jobs that could be handled by mist users would take advantage of their ability to fool people—such as spy work or interrogation.
Mist flames don't appear to get along delightfully well with anyone. Another name for Mist flames (albeit much less accepted than using 'thunder' for 'lighting) is 'fog' and fog is made of clouds, so one could make the argument that they get along with Cloud users just fine and Hibari and Mukuro only fight to be difficult.
The ability of Mist flames is that of construction. That is to say, mist flames create and form illusions. More skilled illusionists can use their ability (which in a very rare case is shown to be accessible before the discovery of TYL! Flames) to create illusions of things such as heat and cold and not just simply visuals.
A special trait of Mist Flames is that people are able to use their abilities before the discover of flames in the TYL! arc. This gives them the sole ability to have users with flame abilities before then. In fact, there does not appear to be any canon Mist users that CAN'T use their illusion abilities prior to the TYL! arc.
C. Other Canon Flames
Sky Flames are not, in fact, the only type of flames canon to the KHR! series. However, it is highly advisable to not give your OC these flames. Based on the rules and situations these flames are given in canon, rules would need to be stretched to the breaking point for your OC to have them. We'll go over each type and why, so that if you do choose to go with these flames, you know what to remember.
Ca. Earth Flames
• The only people shown to have Earth Flames are the Shimon Family
• The Earth Flames are
We do not know for a fact what Kaoru's flames are, but based on the pattern of the Shimon having their flames' titles in their names, most people assume it to be Ocean
• There is no explanation as to why these people are different
• The flames (other than Earth), essentially function the same as their Sky counterparts
If your OC is in the Shimon, then of course he or she can have an Earth flame—though presumably like Sky, Earth is rare, so you should stay away from that. Under no circumstances should your OC be an Earth Flame Guardian for the Vongola. The Vongola are a strictly Sky-related family and have been since their founding. Really, if your OC is not in the Shimon, they should not have Earth Flames.
DO NOT give your OC dual Earth and Sky Flames (of any natures within their fields, such as "Sky and Desert" or "Ocean and Mist."
Cb. Night Flames
• The only people shown to have Night Flames are ex-Arcobaleno
• Only ONE person in the entire world can PRODUCE Night Flames, and that's Bermuda
• The rest are empty shells and cannot do anything without the Night Flames
If your OC is an ex-Arcobaleno, then they have can have Night Flames. However, this comes with many restrictions. All the users of Night Flame that are not Bermuda are empty vessels and literally cannot move or act without him providing Night Flames for them. Thus, your OC with Night Flames cannot be a rogue that is not allied with Vendice.
Similarly, a Night Guardian would be entirely impossibly due to the limitations of the flame. A Night Guardian would have to have Bermuda with them at all times to provide them with the strength to do so much as move. It would be especially important to have him around if such a Guardian (or simple user) were to participate in a battle. Night flames appear to burn out very quickly. Not only would this destroy the canon in revealing Vendice's secret very quickly (you cannot make the argument that no one would notice a baby Vendice member hanging around near constantly), but Bermuda also has a job and is very rarely (if ever) seen without the rest of his Vendice entourage.
Cc. Snow Flames
• Snow Flames are canon to the video games only
• Snow Flames do not exist; they were simply Sky Flames in disguise
• Several Rain Flame users exhibit abilities that have to do with snow and ice, hinting that perhaps they are affiliated more with general precipitation than just rain
If you are looking for a reasonable made-up flame, Snow is a good way to go. Giotto in one canon created a Snow Ring, indicating that there was a job for them to do. This leaves a void for you to fill—IF you put in the proper work to do so.
To have an OC with a Snow Flame, you absolutely must come up with a job for it to do that DOES NOT encroach on one of the existing Guardian's jobs. In addition, you'll need to come up with a reasonable ability for it—again, one that doesn't copy one that already exists.
When giving your OC Snow Flames, it is also very, very important to stay from many clichés of the flame type—NO OTHER FLAME TYPES HAVE THEMES TO GO ALONG WITH THEIR FLAMES. That means that although it is TEMPTING to give your OC box animals such as snow foxes, polar bears, and penguins, it would be best if you did not.
Cd. Rage Flames
• The only characters in the series that use this flame are Vongola Secundo and Xanxus
• These are just a mixture of Sky and Storm Flames
Because this is a mixture of two existing sky flames, there can be no such thing as a Rage Guardian. If you follow the rule to keep your OC with one flame, he or she cannot have the Rage Flame. If you don't, then make sure it is Sky and Storm and not something altogether different.
Ce. Oath Flames
• The only character able to use this flame in the series is Tsuna
• These flames are a combination of Sky and Earth flames
Because of the Sky flame's harmony factor, Tsuna is able to use Enma's Earth flames as well. This is not, however, an excuse to allow your Sky users to do whatever they wish. Tsuna is the main character—if he can do something that no one else can because of a reason that others might have applied to, your OC still cannot do it. An Oath Guardian is entirely out of the question.
D. Made-Up Flames
Because all the Guardian positions are taken, many people are tempted to create their own Guardians and thus their own flames. I highly recommend not going this route. KHR! is very rainbow coordinated and black and white do not count as colors of the rainbow. Still, if you absolutely must create a guardian, this section will cover the dos and don'ts.
• Sky flames ALL HAVE TO DO WITH A TYPE OF WEATHER CONDITION
o Giotto did not make up a special outer-space related metaphor just for your OC
o Things like Snow, Hail, and Wind are acceptable
Wind does influence the weather and is a part of storms
o Things like Hurricane, Tornado, and Typhoon are not
These are types of Storms and there is already a Storm Guardian
• Your made-up flame MUST have a job
o This job cannot encroach on another Guardian's job
o Example: Cloud Guardians need to be distant; your OC should not need to be distant just in different terminology
o Be very careful to not lock in your job to specific kind of personality. REMEMBER: When your OC dies, someone else will be taking his or her place
• Your made-up flame MUST have an ability
o This ability cannot encroach on another Guardian's ability
o Example: Sky Flames petrify. Your OC's flames should not turn them into something different than stone, such as diamonds or dirt
• Do not make your flame gimmicky
o It is a habit of people with Snow flames to have things like polar bears, snow wolves, and snow foxes for their box animals. Although more difficult to do with things like 'hail,' allow for more variety. Making your OC just like everyone else's is boring.
Db. Moon Flames
• Your OC cannot have Moon Flames
• Moon is not a weather condition
o Sun is allowed because 'sunny' is
o People do not say that it is 'moony' outside
• Similarly, other flames that are 'in the sky' but not 'weather conditions,' cannot be Sky Flames—such as Star Flames, or Meteor Flames, or Geese Flames.
De. Families with Made-Up Flame Themes
• Look at the Shimon as an example
• Consider that no one knows why they are different, but they are different from literally every other person we meet in the manga
o Thus, why you should sincerely consider not doing this
• All of their flames SAVE THE ONE THAT CORRESPONDS TO SKY function very similarly to the Sky Flames
o For example, Swamp and Storm correspond and both cause degeneration of some kind
o Another example is Desert and Mist—both create illusions.
• If you make an entirely new set of flames, they should be very similar to the Sky Flame's property
o This does not mean exactly the same
o Use them as basis
o Do not make them similar but stronger
• If you make an entirely new set of flames, give them a theme
o Don't let it be all willy-nilly, like "This is the [Name] Family, they have Staccato, Bird, A Flat, and Jupiter Flames"
o Don't let the theme favor over powering—such as going with outer space.
o If you do do something like this, be VERY careful in making them reasonably fit within the established universe