This set of tutorials should give you a overall idea of the process of character creation. It does not go into technical details of the sofware that is being used, but should give you ideas and suggestions of different tools and methods in the process. This is the process I used to make characters during 2009, this means most tools have been updated and Zbrush now has Decimation Master or GoZbrush, while max has an improved
PFlow Toolbox Office: Volume 1 - Beginner / Intermediate Guide to Particle Flow Tools: Box 1 & Box 3 Pro
This highly anticipated training kit from freelance particle and destruction effects guru Anselm v. Seherr-Thoss focuses on many of the advanced subjects for getting the most of the popular Particle Flow plug-in technologies: Box 1 (now included as part of 3ds Max 2010) and Box 3 Pro. This training course will give new users and intermediate professionals alike the ability to assemble complex Particle Flow systems using these advanced plug-in technologies. Create effects ranging from scripted fracturing of objects to using sound files to affect your particles' behavior. Tutorials that explain, ocean wakes, nanomites and precise alignment of particles to objects are included in this training course. Ansi takes you step-by-step through each effect and provides you with the start and end scene files to explore and dissect on your own as well. And as a little something extra, the training comes with over 20 bonus scene files that you can dive into on your own to see how Ansi creates some of the killer effects he's responsible for daily.