First of all, i havn’t been through the full post, so i might miss some things.
Second, hi from france ! Please excuse some bad english (and never tell my teacher).
For what i have seen, there is still an argument about “should or should not be characters customisation in the game ?” despite the fact that it seems very, VERY possible to get both. OK, some thinks it’s great (i’m one) and others that it’s game-killing. Let’s make both of them happy !
About “how much customisation” though, i think it’s important to discuss about (and that’s exactly what you are doing. So… nevermind ?).
I really love the “choose a background” one from sarissfoi. It imply some diversity and choice, and allows the dev to balance it if needed.
The idea of having a non-fighter self could be good, but if he is never in danger i didn’t like it so much.
I agree with the fact that a trait customisation would make the game easier, but a appearence customisation could even help in battle. I found myself to never remember who had which trait and who whas supposed to do what. Not a lot, and not enought for making it a problem in any way, of course, but i see a point in that.
Do everyone agree on the concept of a “total appearence customisation and partial ability customisation of founding members” thing ? Just to make things clear, because i’m not sure if the arguemntation is about every customisation or just the ones you recruit. I would also say that the starting members doesn’t impact your game that much, mostly beacause the first thing you are doing is buying more crew and stuff. Of course, having one big dude and two useless sidekicks would be a great matter, if there wheren’t those four others randomly-generated guy who are indispensable on the beginning of the game.
To resume my purpose (who doesn’t seem that clear >_<‘): Appearence customisation doesn’t impact the game, especially with a random button. A small and equilibred skill custom (ie : choosing background but not traits, chossing trais but not backgrounds…) won’t always make things easier (i do believe that the first three members aren’t generated the same way than the others). A customable starting gear would, but can be limited (as the one who can be found in our starting city is). Also, i’m not a fan of the “black or white” thing about family-friendly/concept. Life is made of compromise… and once again : “able/disable” buttons are our best friends !