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Do you keep Jaheira and Khalid in your party in Baldur's Gate for the full game, or do you swap them out for other characters?

Power-wise, what do you think about swapping them out for Yeslick that cleric-fighter dwarf, and Ajantis or Avantis or whatever his name is (the Paladin)? (Current mix: Imoen, Jaheira, Khalid, my wizard char, and Branwen.)

Without discussing spoilers, do you think this would this negatively impact the story or dialog experience in some way? I ask because I recall Jaheira and Khalid were party members recommended by Gorian, who seemed to have unique knowledge about what threats the main protagonist was facing.

Or maybe I should swap them out for Kivan and Minsc or something idk.

Party is a good-aligned party, so characters like Tiax and Kagain are out of the question.
Post edited February 02, 2023 by temps
You wont miss out anything if you replace Khalid and Jaheira, so no worries. As for other companions, you can check these links. Some minor spoilers however.
as this is your first run, honestly i'd keep them for the story but yes you can swap one or both out... i know but there are ways to do this
The canonical party is You - Khalid - Jaheira - Imoen - Minsc - Dynaheir. Its well balanced, but it does not feature the best characters. This is not a game where your decisions matter that much, there's no story changes or plot points that are changed because of your party composition, and there's nothing concerning player input that carries on from BG1 and BG2 story wise. So do what you want.
The biggest re-play value of BG is the available roster of possible companions.I don't think that there's "a proper" party composition. Of course you may choose them based on their combat performace, because story-wise there's no difference, apart from some minor encounters.

I think that pretty much any composition will work, it's just a matter of your gameplay style. The wildest party that I finished the game with was: my Bard, Arkanis (used a glitch to take him with me from the tranining in Candlekeep), Jaheira, Garrick, Skie and Alora. I didn't swap any companions during a game, so I was without a thief until chapter 5.

I personally don't tend to swap companions during one playthrough, unless I want to play only reloading when a main character dies, then I will replace those that cannot be raised. Power-wise it's better to stick to one party composition and get the companions as soon as you can, so you can level them up on your own.

I've played this game so much that my last playthroughs were with party of companions that I personally like, those that I didn't finish the game with, or chosen by dice-roll.

As for your party: I think both Khalid/Jaheira and Yeslick/Ajantis are fine and would work great with the rest. Yeslick has more wisdom and wider range of weapons to choose from than Jaheira and has innate dispel magic ability. Ajantis has more strength and paladin abilities, but Khalid will be more proficient in any weapon and has better dexterity/constitution. For me personally it's a close one, so I would go for the ones that I simply like more.

Kivan would be a great addition, since bows are so deadly in BG, as for Minsc you'd have to go for Dynaheir as well (having two wizards is an interesting option as well).
My personal headcanon party is myself (Wizard), Imoen (party Thief who mostly just uses shortbow for ranged damage), Ajantis (frontline tank and melee fighter), Branwen (party cleric and backup tank), Kivan (ranged blaster), and Yeslick (secondary healer and melee fighter). :) Between us we cover all the major roles, I have a solid mix of melee and ranged attack options (including two archers who I can train on any pesky enemy spellcasters) and I have a comfortable padding of healing and protective spells to fix myself up in between battles.

In BG2 I also bring along a secondary Mage to complement my Gorion's Ward, because by then "Mage chess" becomes a deciding factor in combat, and having a 2nd Mage who can help to strip enemy defenses and cast disrupting spells is a godsend. You don't really need one in BG1 though.
Err ... Dynaheir is the worst mage in the game. She's an Evoker and loses both Conjuration and Enchantment, which is just intolerable. So yeah, no way I'd pick up Dynaheir permanently.

One can make an argument for Xan. Enchanter loses Evocation, which is painful. But there are various pretty powerful enchantment spells at low levels, and Xan as specialist gets +2 on the difficultry to resist.

Additionally Xan doesnt conflict with Imoen if you dualclass her to Mage; she can use the Robe of the Good Archmagi, and Xan can use the Robe of the Neutral Archmagi.

Good mage specializations are Conjuration (loses Divination), Necromancy (loses Illusion), Illusion (loses Necromancy). Unfortunately the two mages who are Conjurer and Necromancer are evil and will leave with Party Reputation reaching 19.


I always trade Khalid for Coran. While they've nerfed Coran hard, he's still pretty good with the bow, and he has very compatible weapon skills to Khalid, so that works out perfectly. And with Corans thief skills I'm free to dualclass Imoen to Mage.
I will usually play this with a main character that is a Wizard. I enjoy the early challenge of that.

First few times playing I used the canonical party organization. This would include Khalid and Jaheira.

For the current iteration the party composition is: Ajantis (paladin), Kivan (ranger), Branwen (cleric), Imoen (thief), me (wizard), and Kagain (fighter).

So on that last character I have had to manage reputation since he is evil and the rest are not.

Sure he grumbles a bit and Ajantis does not like him. You do need to not let reputation get too high or he will split. Some quest resolutions offer a hit to reputation. Thieving can also lower it but risks a confrontation with the Flaming Fists busy bodies.

My solution. Let Kagain wander upstairs at an Inn, find an isolated NPC, and well, you know what is going to happen. He is Lawful Evil after all.

I was hoping that the helmet at the bottom of Durlag's Tower would fix this problem but apparently the alignment change does not interact with the reputation aspects.

At some point in the future will have to try playing a fully evil aligned party. Might be interesting.