Hm, I think its great. When you dwindle down the number of people you control or have in a party, it gives them more spotlight and makes the player get to know the character better. The banter is pretty cool I guess.
Though combat wise its not so great when you're one man down. The Junkyard level is indeed pretty awful; especially because of those robots which takes like two minutes to kill. I told myself to fuck it and avoided those robots at all cost.