The question popped up when our second now14 year old daughter asked how a new player would best start. She was used to the family bargainer chain, the family smith and full common chests when she started playing sacred2. Most of the characters we played were builds to test out what is possible: unarmed characters without x% life leech, maximum ca-range characters, ....
All this are character which need carefully selected equipment. She never played a character which had to live from just what it finds.
So she started a new character while being at hospital for 2 weeks. She played a seraphim from scratch: no common chest, no bargainer chain, no family smith....
She is now level 105 in niob and she said she did the character so that every 20-30 levels the playstyle would be different. Attached a screenshot of this character after finishing silver at level 41 without deaths. She said it would be nice if there would be a list with the character guides which would indicate how good a guide is replayable by a new player.
From my 'guides':
Sohei:possible, RegPerHit equipment and a weapon with x% lifeleech should be possible to be found while still in silver.
Melee-elf: possible: same as sohei
Kungfu Dryads: Detheya set for x% life leech needed!
Hardcore-single aspect DM Mentalist: if not hardcore, no special equipment needed, using a weapon with reg per hit in beginning. The full ca-range later on was needed to level with a decent speed at level 170+
So see this thread to post which guides you would consider newbie friendly, as for being a first character.