Well, ended up spontaneously rerolling because I thought breaker hammers were two handed. Also did a little more research and I think I can make a few sacrifices to min-maxing for a "cooler" setup.
This time I'm going with:
Monk: Vaan (seems to be the norm, and I want breaks in each party. also seems to match his gear visually)
Archer: Baltier (despite the DPS loss, I prefer this aesthetically.)
Black Mage: Basch (what I've heard is that magic cap is easy to reach regardless of class)
Fran: Red Mage
Team 1 is more of a standard jack of all trades type of team composition. Breaks for everything, two offhealers and two tanky melee.
Team 2 won't have someone with breaks, not sure how much this will hurt me. I'm a little worried about that, but from what I understand Hunter is a godly tank so that should give my mages more time to sit back and blast away if my killing power is that much lower.
Hopefully these teams will work out and won't have any conflicts with esper unlocks. I am pretty happy with the lineup at least aesthetically... that was my primary reason for rerolling.
I really advise against having Red Mage in team 2 there,
Monk + Red Mage + Archer would give you a much better first team and having a BM and RM side by side is a bit silly, TBH.
Then, you have three Light Armor users, I'd suggest a max of two as - barring Cerobi farming -
you're likely to have trouble getting high-tier gear for them all.
Unless you go for Heavy Armor on Archer via Shemhazai, I'd change one of Balthier / Penelo into e.g. an Uhlan.
(or, make Penelo a [fun-to-watch] Breaker, that'd give you your coveted full-Breaks-in-each-team, plus a Genji Gear user if Knight is out).
If you were to make Ashe a Red Mage and Fran a White Mage (stealing WM FTW),
that'd pretty much solve all immediate problems I can see.
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Man, I think I've spent way more time trying to plan my characters than playing the game :(
Penelo: Black Mage
Basch: White Mage
I think I'm going to go with this and say screw making two teams, just have a pool of characters that are more or less interchangeable with each other.
I just dropped Hunter and Red Mage because I don't really know what they bring over other characters. I don't really like Ulhan so I'm probably going to avoid that as well. I also split my classes into 2 heavy 2 light 2 mystic as per your advice. I can't really think of anything I'm missing and I assume Knight and Black Mage and possibly Archer are capable of dealing heavy damage. Breaker I'm grabbing in case I want a team with all breaks without bringing two breaking chars, same reason for White Mage.
I'm not sure what my "primary" lineup will be, but as long as there's some sort of exp sharing for inactive members I'll probably just swap things in and out as needed.
I also skimmed the summon bonus chart and as far as I can tell none of those classes really step on each others toes in a debilitating way, hopefully I didn't miss something.
Oh, I also really wanted to try Samurai but I'm having some trouble finding a group I like that works with it, not to mention Ashe(who is already going to be my Knight) would be my preferred Samurai not just for stats but for aesthetics as well.
I was sort of leaning towards monk/archer/samurai but that seemed too light on healing. I'll probably save that for another playthrough, though.
Archers are meant to be all offense, anything besides that would make this job less useful.
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