I've just finished changing the appearance and back story of Ian, one of the party members you'll come across in Chapter 3. It struck me how different the characters have turned out from their initial concepts. So, just for kicks, here are the early concepts for the main cast you've encountered so far (I will post other characters after they become a part of the plot):
But, as the plot began to evolve into something deeper, Alistair's image didn't fit in quite so well. He was too reckless and brash to carry the audience through some of the more subtle thematic content. He evolved into someone more sensitive and clever. His reasonable and dependable nature might seem boring in comparison, but it propelled character and plot development into something much more meaningful. Because of this change, the plot twists and the ending pack a bigger emotional punch - one that I hope you will enjoy.
But Cordelia's back story was extremely flimsy, and her reason for joining and staying with a perverted Alistair seemed ridiculous after a while. She evolved into a much more gentle and subdued character. She eventually turned into the seemingly cliche naive girl who idolizes an older man and follows him around like a love-sick puppy. There's a lot more to Cordelia, however, and you catch glimpses of it in chapter 3.
Penelope evolved into a more of a paladin type - very lawful and stoic. This created a fantastic contrast to the cast members who see laws as just suggestions. It also gave the possibility for internal conflict and growth.
Claudia probably changed the most out of everyone, starting with the name. In my early notes, she was named "Theresa". She was a warrior princess, a la Xena, and she joins the party because her father orders her to (after some random quest). Personality-wise, she was similar to the current Penelope. Very lawful, very mature and strong. She first started to evolve when I changed her reasons for joining Alistair's party. Rather than being ordered, she joins as an act of rebellion toward her father (who forbade her from leaving the castle). That small, rebellious streak really took off and started to shape her personality more and more. Soon, she became the fiery, sarcastic, anarchistic self. This personality suited her role and "feel" perfectly, but the background didn't. I wanted to keep her in a sheltered environment, but it was impossible to do so in an organized castle-type place. As I worked on some of the mage lore for Caeta, it seemed like that would be the perfect background for Claudia. Her role changed to that of a mage, and so did her looks. She still kept her purple/pink hair, however.