1. Holo
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    Holo Senior Member

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    Developing the antagonist

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Holo, Feb 14, 2012.

    I'm having a lot of trouble with my antagonist. Can someone give me pointers on how you develop your antagonist? What points of the antagonist do you focus on the most and where do you get your inspiration for your antagonist?
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Why is the antagonist a particular problem? It's just another character, whose goals or motivation are in opposition to those of your protagonist.

    Just another character.
     
  3. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    Fix'd.

    Agree with Cogito, though. Develop them the same way as everyone else. Just make sure they're providing their obligatory opposing force (most of the time if not all of the time - those times when they agree with the protag are pretty cool).
     
  4. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    I base my antagonists (or at least the villains) personality on the psychopaths. If you google the term, you should come up with quite a few resources, lists of character traits etc.
    Once you have a better idea of what type of a psychopath you are basing them on, dress them up in whatever character suits your story.
    The thing with psychopaths is, one in 25 people are it, they inhabit all sorts of jobs and social positions, any position of power or influence is especially interesting to them, but they can be anyone.
    And good luck with writing!
     
  5. Acanthophis
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    Acanthophis ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Contributor

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    Most of my antagonists want the same goal as the protagonists. But it's a matter of "do the means justify the end?" They aren't any harder to develop than a protagonist. If you know what your protagonist is doing, then it shouldn't be hard to think of what the antagonist is doing.
     
  6. Stepko
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    Stepko New Member

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    You don't need to make him bad. Just give him different motivation than your MC. And when motives clash, he will be antagonist.
     
  7. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    My antagonists typically develop themselves. I've had antagonists characterized by revenge, blackmail, a shallow spoiledness, anger, an accident, and even one of the most twisted worldviews I've seen on the printed page. lol The antagonist should be kinda fun to write.
     
  8. TheTranskinator
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    TheTranskinator Member

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    My antagonist is actually an overall decent guy who's desire for self-preservation led to an untimely "betrayal" of sorts. The antagonist can be whoever you want him to be. He just has to oppose the protagonist at some point.

    I've found that if the antagonist has a personal connection with the protagonist the conflicts seem so much more interesting. That's just one of my many opinions though
     
  9. leke101
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    leke101 Member

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    The best antagonists are those who have weaknesses and strengths just as the protagonist. The antagonist should not less developed than protagonist. The only difference between your antagonist and protagonist should be the conflict between them. The best antagonists are also ones who really push the protagonist to his/her limits. For example The Joker from the The Dark Knight really pushed Batman to his breaking point and made him even consider how far he would go in killing a criminal. Now that is a powerful antagonist-one who can get under the skin of the hero.
     
  10. Erato
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    Erato Contributing Member

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    It depends on the interests of the main character and on the nature of the book; it's true that they aren't necessarily evil. There are the conflicting-motives antagonists. There are the out-to-kill-the-MC antagonists. There are the take-over-the-world antagonists. There are the I-want-what-you-want-and-I'm-going-to-get-it antagonists. There are the good antagonists who are fighting the MC because they believe the MC is evil. And more that I can't come up with.
     
  11. TheWritingWriter
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    TheWritingWriter Senior Member

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    Just treat him like a regular character. Antagonist is just a literary term. He's still, at the root of it all, just a character.
     

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