I wanted to put the word out there that cookiemonger and I defeated the Jewel Eater and acquired Gnome. If I remember correctly, Lise and Duran are both 12th level and Angela is cresting 10th level. We traveled back to the port town and what’s-his-name’s alchemy shop to make use of his cannon travel, and finished the subsequent maze. I think we’re coming up on Duran background.

Maybe when we’ve powered our way through SD3, we can double-team Secret of Mana. I remember I got as far as the final boss in that game, but wasn’t able to finish it because I didn’t grind enough levels — I just couldn’t do enough damage.

Uh, I also advanced my Diablo 2 paladin through the rest of the Horadric Staff quest (he’s transmuted the two pieces together) and just reached the Arcane Sanctuary by the time I stopped. I keep thinking that the game drops terrible loot for how tough the monsters are … once again forgetting I’ve turned up the difficulty to eleven.

I actually started looking at builds for new ways to increase my paladin’s damage output, because it was taking too long to kill things. I recently acquired a warhammer that lets him do over a hundred something damage when using the Sacrifice skill (currently 10th level, unmodded) and his defense is somewhere in the vicinity of thirteen thousand through use of the Defiance aura (15th level, I think).

If I remember correctly, there’s an NPC, perhaps in Act I of the current patch (v.13?) that lets you revise your skill point investment. It might just be the one time, though, so I need to be careful about how I use it. Limiting the number of times a player can “re-spec” their character is stupid. I think Guild Wars has the right idea about allowing unlimited re-specs in town. There are only so many character slots.