Actually, that is similar to what I’ve been doing. (Ironically my wife is the one that is iffy on the idea.) I have three options at the beginning of the game: Verbosity, Hard Mode and Skip Intro.
Normally Verbosity is on, turning it off cuts out a lot of the ‘world building’. As my CoG is in a space setting with aliens, if you turn verbosity off, it cuts out the descriptions of the aliens, cuts out the part where the layout of the ship you ride on is described, and shortens a couple of discriptions of rooms and things that always happen. I did this because I found that I end up skiping a lot of text in a lot of the games. For example, I wanted the 8/7 commendations for Marine Raider, and so I played it three or four times to get them. Eventually I got it, but then I realized that when I actually got it, I didn’t read more than a dozen words on my last play through. This isn’t really that hard, as all I’m doing (so far) is adding <*if verbosity> and hitting the space bars on what I think can be cut.
My next option is Hardmode. right now I’m still doing the character generation, so it’s not coming up a lot, but Hardmode is not just ‘you get fewer skill points’. Mostly it’s randomization of skill checks, so sometimes Hardmode can actually make the game easier. Really, it’s mostly to make it less predictable. You can play through the game with Hardmode on, make the same decesions, and get different outcomes. For example, one of the things you can do in the character generation is say you enrolled in college. The game then checks if you have a certain intelligence level and then says whether you get in or not. You then get stat changes based on that. If Harmode is on, then the game randomizes how much intelligence you need. So the code looks something like this (note: I use rand_# as place holder numbers):
-*rand rand_1 50 70
-*if intelligence > rand_1
*if intelligence > 60
You’re application is rejected.
You get into college.
Also, there are a few options where you do things just to show how you handle things (diplomatically, with force, tactically, ect). For example: In a starting sequence, you’re faced with someone around a corner, probably with a weapon drawn. You can spook them by trying to glance around the corner, then try to step out diplomatically. For that I still give you a few skill points in diplomacy and perception (for trying to scout and for trying to handle things with words). If hardmode is on, I give fewer points for that combo (spooking your target then walking out with your hands up), and nix intelligence a bit. (They do take a shot the first time you stick your head out, so it’s not as though you don’t have any warning.)
My final options is Skip Intro. I haven’t yet implimented it at all (and may very well cut it altogether as I’m starting to realize how much work goes into a CoG game) but essentially it will pull up a random character and give a brief overview of thier life. As I haven’t yet worked on it I can’t exactly say much more, but I’m thinking that if I do keep it, it will be a handful of pre-built character with a few directions for each one.
tl;dr: Yea, I’ve got somethings I’ve been working on that are similar. Just some options when you start the game.