1) Generate ability scores using one of the methods described in the DMG
Why aren't these in the fucking PHB? Okay, okay, I get it: selecting one is entirely the province of the dungeonmaster. Quite honestly, I'm cool with that. This does mean the DM actually has to outline his campaign ahead of time instead of assuming some sort of baseline rules-set. Again, that's fine.
2) Pick character race and adjust ability scores
If you roll a 7 for INT, you cannot be an elf. If you decide to be a half-orc your 18 CHA will need to be lowered to 12. Actually, it would be a 16 due to the -2 penalty, then lowered to 12 as that is the racial maximum. Strangely, there are no bonuses listed for ability scores over 18, even though it is very possible to have a 19 through various means. Refer to Deities and Demigods!
3) Select character class
If you want to play a paladin but don't have a 17 CHA, tough shit. Fuck all that UA die rolling crap; if you're going to do that why not simply assign ability scores? It'd certainly be easier. Selecting multiple classes is easy enough if you flip to that section.
4) Determine age
Yes, you must roll the age of the character per the DMG. That's fine, but again, why the hell isn't this in the PHB?
5) Adjust ability scores for aging
This is oft overlooked, but pretty much the easiest way to get higher scores. It's not possible to roll up a middle aged magic-user or cleric, which kinda sucks.
6) Roll for secondary skills
Not necessarily required, but as it's on the same page in the DMG, might as well do it now.
7) Determine psionic ability
It's in there and therefore a valid rule. Right?
This is either simple (druids for instance), or confusing (thieves). If you read the alignment requirements in the thief description a couple times, it makes sense, but why not simply list all the possibilities? Not Gygax!
9) Roll hit points
Easy enough, I guess.
10) Select languages
I'm not really sure if you're supposed to do this in-play for extra languages granted by INT or before play starts as the section is somewhat ambiguous. I suppose it would be more fun to do it during the game, but that can be somewhat annoying.
11) Roll for starting money and buy equipment
12) Pick weapon proficiencies
Now wait a minute; shouldn't this be before buying equipment? Yes, it should, but it's right after the equipment list so whatever.
13) Ask DM for starting spells
Yeah, you don't get to pick these unless the DM rolls a 0. However, you do get to start with 4 spells, which is nice (3 for illusionists).
14) Determine if keen-eared
Hidden away on page 60 of the DMG...this comes after everything else because it is determined during play, specifically the first time the character attempts to hear a noise. Seriously, Gygax? You surely expect me to have a photographic memory, don't you?
Stuff specifically left out includes THAC0, turning undead and saving throws. While I don't necessarily agree that players shouldn't have access to this information (it certainly makes it much more a pain in the ass), there's something to be said for the DM keeping this stuff private to create an air of mystery. Or something. Personally, I do all this last anyway.
Overall not that bad, but still somewhat annoying. Combat, on the other hand...I'll post something about that later.