Yep, here we go again, No one single right answer, that is between you and your situation. I practice with my HD gun a lot, just shot it in the snow today, again, at liter bottles of ice at 8 yards. Not scientific but the results show that at 24' a load of #4 shot will ruin your day.
I have 00, 000 and slugs on my shelf but the 20 gauge Mossberg by my bedroom door is filled with #4 for the simple reason I have family in my house that I do not want to shoot. The longest possible shot in my house is 24' and the most likely distance is under 10'. At 10' that gun and that load makes a thumb sized hole in a 2x4 and at 24' makes a 2 1/2" - 3" pattern. Won't stop a grizzly but they are not my concern.
Use what you are comfortable with. If you don't sleep well at night without a 3 1/2" 12 gauge loaded with Brenneke slugs then that is what you should have.
Good intentions will always be pleaded for any assumption of power. The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern will, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters.