I just beat FF1 in Japanese. Made an LLTVG entry for it, too.
If I ever play FF1 again, I'm not taking a White Mage. Useless motherfuckers. Battles are too short for their assist spells like AFIR to be useful. Need to heal? Use HEAL potions between battles. Poisoned? PURE potions. Turned to stone? SOFT potions. Did somebody die? Don't let them die in the first place, dummy. You're really only likely to have problems with death in the Ice Cave (the only place I had Game Overs), and lemme tell ya, having a White Mage did not help very much there (especially if the White Mage himself died). Better to grab the Floater ASAP, use it to go to Gaia and give everybody Pro Rings, then come back if you want the treasures. And while it's nice to be able to warp out of a dungeon with EXIT, you can teach WARP to a Red or Black Wizard instead and live with having to use it more than once sometimes. Sometimes you're really glad you have a White Mage -- but I bet on the whole you'd be even more glad to have the extra firepower of another Fighter. Those guys can stand up to anything.
I'd say the ideal party is probably Fighter/Fighter/Fighter/Red Mage. My Black Mage/Wizard was kinda nice to have, but ultimately he just didn't do much a Red Wizard couldn't handle. Even the almight NUKE spell is rather weak, considering you'd rather save it up for boss battles, and then against said boss it's usually not much stronger than whackin' at 'im with a Knight.
I thought of doing Final Fantasy Legend next, 'cause it's supposed to be short, and I like short things, but I dunno. I'm hearing some bad things about it...