I'm just gonna say, with proper playing, I haven't needed to level grind at all while playing the 3.03 mod. With proper playing, I mean proper tactical choices. For example, against Ghouls, they have a bit shorter reach than you and your first attacks force them to retreat, so a good tactic is to make first and second strongstyle attack as they approach and pull. If you do it properly, they'll never get a hit in. I used to have huge trouble with Ghouls too when I tried to fight them, but as I figured that out, I stopped taking damage in fights against them and didn't even really need Swallow or Tawny Owl. Ozzrel was tougher, but that's because the fight took so long that I lost concentration and it hit hard.I had the same Pain-issue too; I just didn't seem able to deal Pain to Ghouls, so I resorted to the above strategy and it worked fine. Nowadays, I have no trouble dealing the pain and all that. Back then it was a pain though.