I've spent the first four chapters fiddling around with my party roster. I'm playing good (boo!) and have so far settled on:
* Me (Paladin)
* Minsc (That big strength is too good to ignore.)
* Dynaheir (she kind of goes with Minsc, it doesn't feel right letter her die even though her interactions are deeply annoying. Besides, I like that extra spell slot)
* Branwen (the only effective cleric choice for a good party. And her accent amuses me for some reason.)
* Imoen (Going to do the dual class mage thing at level 5 or 6. I think I've wasted points in pick pocket as I never use it - it just feels wrong).
So that leaves a slot left and I'm not sure who to put in it.
My play style is quite melee focussed. I dislike having to babysit vulnerable characters, especially given the ease with which monsters appear or move round behind your party and pick on weaker members. So I really wanted someone who could wield a sword rather than a bow. It seems I have three viable options.
* Kivan - seems the best option right now, and I have him at the moment. The semi-decent strength means he can dual-wield longswords to good effect, and the reasonable dex keeps his Armour Class sensible. He can switch to a bow if required. But his hit points are a bit feeble.
* Coran - hasn't got the front-line punch of Kivan, but I'm very concious that somewhere in the game there will be strength-enhancing items which will probably make him a better front-line fighter. Plus since I'm planning to dual-class Imoen his higher thief skills could well come in handy. Plus I hear he's funny to have around.
* There's also Ajantis but he feels like a distant third to me. I already have a paladin (my PC), and he's not as flexible as Coran or as immediately powerful as Kivan. But if anyone has a good reason to take him?
All my characters are level 4 at the moment. So I'm not sure what level Coran will be when I pick him up? That could influence the decision as if I get him at level 2, he should catch up quick and I can assign his skills as I see fit.
So ... which do people think is best? Currently leaning toward taking the short-term power hit and going with Coran for long-term gain.