In BG1 it's simple: Imoen, Jaheira & Khalid, Minsc & Dynaheir. I've also read that canonically you travel with some other NPCs for a while, but that's the party you start with and evidently end the story with, given it's the party captured by Irenicus. It's a pretty well-rounded party too. Playing good alignment, it's my party of preference.
Is there a comparable setup for BG2? Jaheira and Minsc are with you, and as far as I understand Yoshimo is supposed to be kind of canon, given the things that happen with him later on. But other than that, is it safe to say it's left open?
As my main char is half mage and Jaheira half druid, I think Aerie is a fine addition, so I decided that I want to keep her. Available at the start, too. Also, Minsc's new witch! Semi-canon perhaps? Anyway, this leaves one slot open.
Jaheira is only half a fighter so with Minsc that's one and a half, perhaps leaving an additional warrior to be desired. That said, I could dual-class Yoshimo into a fighter after getting 100 points in open doors. I feel further thief levels would be wasted on him anyway, as I don't see myself using thief skills like traps and backstabbing that much. That would give me Minsc and two half fighters, which should satisfy.
Maybe I'll just leave the sixth slot flexible, at least until I get back Imoen and Yoshimo parts, as I'd be back to Minsc and Jaheira as the only front-liners at that point.
Any thoughts? Any NPC you'd say I absolutely want in my party in the long run?