It's cool to read your experience and to hear that you're having fun with it using a party of 6.

I have the same opinion regarding mods, in that I'm sure I'd much prefer playing with 6, but am reluctant to mod game for this.

Especially in EA where some rando hotfix could break my install and force me delete folders and redownload everything. A modded game in EA makes bug hunting and feedback feel pointless, since it's hard to know what's a result of resent patches or what's coming from the result of a mod. Had they made this an official option I'd probably have been playing BG3 a lot more these past months. Instead I've barely touched this game since the Summer and the BG3 launch icon just sits around collecting dust on desktop.

During the time when I could have been playing BG3, I've just been replaying the entire Baldur's Gate Saga in EE from BG1 to TOB on a higher difficulty setting, using a Charname class choice and party comp I'd never tried before. I've been playing those games for 20 years and am still finding reasons to return to them with new eyes. I created a series of custom portraits for all the NPC companions and once again the game seems new. Even the EE companions feel more interesting once they have decent portraits lol. In the old games I generally had a core crew of 4 for the long haul, with the 5th and 6th slots rotating out based on the story progression. In BG3 I don't feel like the game changes all that much from one playthrough to the next, even if trying to rock a different path or a different party composition. I've barely been playing it for a year and it already feels spent like that. There just aren't enough companions in BG3 to make it seem like anything is really different from one run to the next and I quickly get bored of it. All my Tavs sound the same, they all end up looking the same with the same outfits in the same colors, and it's the same deal with their companions.

BG3 is way more developed in terms of party interaction than BG1/2 ever were, and yet somehow playing the Original Saga with "Dark Jaheira" dressed in all black and wearing the Helm of Opposite Alignment with a different portrait is still more engaging hehe. Even though it's umpteenth playthrough, the idea of rolling with an evil Bard through the entire Saga had me eager to hit New Game. When I hear the "level up" chime I get excited. When Khalid got merced by the first Ogre we met and we decided to see what it would take to break a Harper in the aftermath, that still feels fun. I'm playing with a party of 5 mixed alignment companions that I never used together before, taking a different route through the game, with different cursed items getting the showcase and generally having a blast. Charming Ursa to have her lay waste to the Xvart village instead of just nuking them all with fireballs lol, stuff of that sort. It set the tone. I wish BG3 was more like that, because I know there's a lot more going on here than there is in the games from 1998-2001, but the small party and the lookalikes all looking alike each time are really holding it back for me.