I'm sure this has been done a million times, but there's always new inputs thrown into the mix. So, what do you prefer in a character? Do you expect different things from a main or supporting character? Strength of will, conviction, sense of morality, ruthlessness, quick decision-making, or something else? Maybe you look for something less tangible as in how the character elicits feeling from you as the reader (or writer). Does the type of story affect what you look for? A romantic novel may have a strong, independent man ruggedly braving the elements. Yet it may just as well have a mysterious, sensitive man living in luxury. Does age affect it? Does race? Sex? If it was something completely alien to what you're familiar with would you allow more leeway? Are you uncomfortable with devianting from what you're used to? I think hearing thoughts on this could help people with character development.