Start level: 1
Playable character races: See Races of Light
Character classes: All classes in PHBs 1-3 and Dragon (i.e., all that Character Builder ahs to offer).
Ability Scores: Standard point buy system in PHB and the character builder.
Items: Each character starts out with 3 legacy items, enchanted items that depend on the experience of their user in order to awaken the magic that sleeps within them. These are items your character was gifted, perhaps from a mentor, a relative, etc. For each character level you will have 3 points to distribute between your items. No item can be more than two levels higher than your current character level. When an item has enough levels to warrant a bonus (per its magic item description), it becomes activated and it takes on the bonus and enchantment detailed in its description. Because you will want better items at higher levels, you get a chance to “retune” the enchantment on your items when you hit paragon level.
Character background: Good character background enriches everyone’s experience of your character and enriches the world, as you provide me with story hooks for the campaign and help me flesh out the details of the part of the world from which your character hails. In order to encourage developed character backgrounds, if you have no character history written up, you get a -1 to item levels to start. If you have a minimal, “Elrik came from Memphis and his race was destroyed by marauding gnolls, so now he hates gnolls and took on the adventuring way of life,” you start out with the typical 3 pt. allotment. If you have a developed backstory, you get 1 bonus level to one of your items at first level. I’ll let you know if you have anything but the typical.
Gold: Starting gold is as described in PHB. Remember, legacy items are gifted to you somehow, so you don’t have to spend gold on them.