Been there done that. I wasn't impressed.
Even though it goes against the "spirit" of DCC, I think it would behoove us all to acknowledge that (1) people are eventually going to want better stats in DCC and (2) people are going to eventually want better survivability in DCC.
I think there's a solid reason why D&D drifted the way it did. One of the first
things people did with D&D is house rule rolling up characters to one of the many options presented in AD&D -- either 4d6 take best three or roll 3d6 seven times and allocate as you want.
I like the randomness of DCC. I like 3d6 in order. But I acknowledge that people are going to (eventually) get bored with that and move on to some other system that suits what they want to do in their game.
Same with hit points (and recovery), IMO. Perhaps the second
house rule to ever hit the table in most D&D groups was "max hit points at 1st level".
It's just going to happen. Why do we know this? Because it's already
happened. I love me some DCC. But in some regards, it is failing to learn from the history of D&D.
The question that I think needs to be asked is whether DCC wants umpteen millions of house rules cribbed from OD&D on tacked onto its core system. Or whether it wants to take a stand and offer clear variants/suggestions/house rules that can benefit people from the get-go.
It seems it's drifting into the waters of "just house rule". Which is fine. But it's not going to lend itself to a very unified play experience with Andy's group using DR house rules, my group using variant hit points and GnomeBoy's group using variant GnomeBoy rules.
To a degree, this is unavoidable. But when it's so glaringly obvious where people are going to start tacking and hacking, I feel it's a better strategy to just come out and say it. Acknowledge where the dials are. Tell people how to turn them up and down. Swords & Wizardry Core
does a good job with this, without sacrificing the integrity of the game or throwing itself on the altar of the Big Darn Heroes in 4e.
As it stands, I'm concerned with DCC being a truly "complete" game when it comes out. It's abdicated far too much of known, well-trod D&D issues to the legions of tinkerers and tweakers that will DM the game. It's also (strangely) re-introduced some D&D issues that had been addressed as early as AD&D.
I think there's fertile ground in DCC for 3PP and I also think there's going to be a baker's dozen of house rules kludged from all ends of the 3PP spectrum to twist and turn DCC in a bunch of different directions. Joseph sitting down in my DCC game will have a seemingly different ruleset and experience than he would in Andy's game or than we would in his.
I don't think that's bad. I'm working on a 3PP publication myself.
But in terms of the stat treadmill, starting ability scores and hit points, I think it's regrettable that variant options appear to be outside the conversation. In the past, Joseph had mentioned including an appendix with popular house rules in it. I hope that stays in. And I hope some of the ideas on this forum (not just my own) make it in.
It would be nice to have a common ground upon which the community can grow. Such that we can discuss whether or not we use "Shields Shall Be Splintered" or "d10 Untrained" or "3d6 Stat Boost Roll" instead of compiling reams and reams of "I think that'll work" house rules and splintering ourselves in 1000 different directions.