I think we're probably beginning mid January. I'm not setting a recruitment end time, I'm going to wait within reason for everyone wants to play to finish characters. Holidays are busy and I think it makes more sense for this type of recruitment to take a leisurely pace.
I won't wait an additional 3 months if 4 people are done and 1 isn't finished, but the last can finish up when they're able and join later.
1. I mean 2 (one on each side of the base class gestalt) would seem pretty much as many as would be reasonable. I guess it depends on your patience. We're going to do a group assessment before we start to make sure everyone has an interesting niche and no one is dramatically underpowered compared to everyone else. I assume everyone else will have issues if you have a dozen buddies following you around.
2. In what sense? They're made exactly like PCs. Let's say you were playing a Ranger//Druid with a wolf animal companion. So you'd take a wolf or awakened wolf, and use the same point buy etc. to make its stats. Clearly, the lack of opposable thumbs would create some issues for a lot of animal companions, in terms of wielding certain weapons. However, familiars, eidolons, phantoms, and some other classes of buddies might basically be a PC with an unusual race like pixie or quasit. Remember though, I want all of this to fit fluff wise with the setting.
Alright, that all works for me. I was just wanting to be sure about the number of companions, and wasn't planning on doing anything with massive numbers of them, and was initially not planning on going with any more than two anyway.
As for the second point, it would just be treating the companions creature type as their base race, correct?
Also, just how fantastic or not fantastic would you want things to be to fit within the setting? This is tied more towards companions again, especially Eidolons and Phantoms.