So I've been wondering about some good party compositions for later on and keep getting stuck on my thief & cleric spots (and no I don't like cleric/thieves duals or multis so they're out). Playing on core difficulty.
I love dwarf fighter/clerics, but I never really messed around with turn undead before. I brought a party through the vale of shadows and low and behold, that turn undead was fearing about half the mobs I ran into since I had the cleric using turn undead while idle. I got to thinking, I wonder if a plain cleric would be better in the long run for all the dangerous cadaverous undead later on (since instead of fear they would just explode with a higher cleric level), but a plain cleric isn't going to be as good in combat against non-undeads as a fighter/cleric. Also was wondering if dual wielding would be better than 1 handed + shield for this character.
For the thief - backstabbing was nice in bg for taking out that nasty mage or dangerous enemy early on in a tough fight, but in iwd, the monsters come in groups and I don't know if backstab is as useful due to all the swarms of enemies coming at you. Same with traps. I loved setting traps down and luring packs or a tough mob over it to take it out of the fight in bg. Wasn't sure if that was still the case in iwd, or if the traps for the standard thief or bounty hunter were aoe. Due to the "packs" of mobs in iwd, would something like swash/fighter, or swash/mage be better, or the kensai/thief? Reason I didn't mention fighter/thief multi is I used one in bg and loved it, but the HLAs really made it something special. Same for the multi mage/thief.
For my party's tank I was thinking of trying out either a DD or a barbarian (both dwarf for the saves). Not interested in berserker since I played one to death in bg. I know in bg nasty status effects from casters can ruin your day, but how often do those pop up in iwd? I figure the main benefit of the barb over the dd is rage, but loses out on better armor, better defenses, and high mastery with two weapons. Do you lose a lot going with 1 hander & shield versus dual wielding in iwd?