Do NPCs actually have character development? do they trigger conversations in various points in the game? do they provide side quests? is there any point at all to them compared to making an extra character (the ones who join you permanently that is, not the ones who are an escort mission). Because it would be really really awesome if they did, if when I go to specific places for the first time they will trigger a dialogue, if they had each had a few side quests... if having one in the party caused certain reactions or things to occur... but as far as I can tell they are just completely generic (and horribly built) extra bodies on the battlefield with nothing at all to say.