I got this idea a few days back and have since allowed it to fester in my head to make sure it's not terribly dumb. It sounds solid, so I thought I'd share.
This is for my horror/investigation/badass game, Van Dread. It's about all those insane-driven investigators from your CoC games banding together to fuck shit up.
Since I've been trying to think of the game as a kind of horror movie (trying to emulate them to a degree), I felt that character death is important for the game. At the same time, having player characters dying all the time is definitely NOT a part of my game. Solution? Kill off the b-actors.
At the start of each scenario (not session), players create a character in a few sentences. No stats needed. The system used for this introductory game isn't the Van Dread system, but a very simple, 1 dice system (that Jarrod suggested). Characters are innocents that get tangled up with the scenario's boogeymen. Partying kids getting chopped up by the axe maniac, rookie police officers getting gutted by the vampire infestation, that kind of thing. These characters are doomed from the start, although surviving is an option (if you run away). Surviving cast can be used as NPCs(witness) or even as PCs (with the required fleshing out). This introduction serves as a well...introduction to the scenario(setting the stage if you like) and allows players to be part of the creation process to the crime scene(they already know how things happened, now the GM only needs to provide details), as well as satisfy my need for gruesome murders.
I'm thinking a time limit can be added. Characters not dead by then either dissappear, die or survice, according to GM and player wishes.
What does SG think?