I'm not quite sure how to put it, but I guess when I look at the characteristics that make a marysue or garystu, they seem to be...
What makes my character unique in a desirable way without adding depth?
By depth I mean drawback...
And by drawback I mean something I *actually* wouldn't want to have to deal with.
So, for example if your characters drawback were that they're a poorly educated antisocial brute that kills everything in its path, but the player really wants to play a poorly educated antisocial brute that kills everything in its path... Thats kind of a mary sue even though antisocial, poor education, and killer are 'drawbacks' that I wouldn't in real life personally want to deal with. But the person who makes this character, despite its drawbacks, is really looking forward to, not the drawbacks of such a character, but the joys of being 'Mongo just pawn in game of life'.
I look back on my characters and think... I always play characters that I'd want to be. Even when I have the option to choose drawbacks, I still choose drawbacks that I wouldn't mind having to face... (thus I've never played a dull antisocial brute that kills everything in its path for example... I've never played 'frail emo pixie' either...)
EVEN while such things might be considered a drawback to the CHARACTER... Those 'drawback's arent really considered to be drawbacks to the PLAYER... And by that metric I've played nothing but marys and garys.
If every thing I've ever played is something that I *wanted* to try playing, then EVERY of the things (even the ones with big drawbacks) were sues.
I mean... I'm no literary major, so I can't say I have an eye or an appreciation for 'character development' and 'character arcs'... While I do enjoy analyzing a character's personal tropes/perspectives/mores and finding ways to challenge them (force them to face those tropes/perspectives/mores in ways that either reinforce or debunk them...) I've never seen the character whose tropes/perspectives/mores being debunked (creating a transformative character arc) as necessarily very interesting to me. If being marysue is about having a character without consequence, and the drawbacks I have chosen in fact have consequences that I'd find either enjoyable or, worse, not consequential at all to me as a player... Then what's not a mary sue?
With that in mind my question is... whats on the other side of the spectrum? What characters have you played were characters that you're glad you aren't? If 'drawback' means not just a penalty or inconvenience, but one that you actually find annoying and not enjoyable... What drawbacks have you chosen that turned out to be more of a pain in the butt than you expected and ended up being every bit the drawback they had a reputation for being (and then some)? What are the characteristics of an anti sue? What are the characters and characteristics you've played that you *think* are anti sue and are they really?