Sorry guys, I meant to post the next installment this morning before work so we could discuss it throughout the day, but I slept through my alarm and didn't have time for a shower let alone cut/pasting shit onto Gamespite. I AM A BAD HOST.
I'll go ahead and get some of these replies out of the way though so I don't have a huge monsterpost to make when I get home tonight.
There's no reason to farm GIANTs, ever. They have a lot of HP and are hard to kill, have no weaknesses to exploit, and are never found anywhere near a convenient recharge point. The abundance of GIANTs is one of the reasons I do not advocate using the PNEOP.
"Farm the Hall of GIANts!" sounds like something a strategy guide-writer would come up with if he's on a deadline and finds a spot that has guaranteed fights every step, without actually thinking about what it means or what the alternatives are. If you're going to farm GIANTs, do yourself a favor and go farm MUMMYs instead.
Heh, I didn't buy any Wooden Nunchucks either. =)
It's easy enough to RUN from most overworld monsters (except for undead, which are rare enough to not have to really worry about) that healing in between fights isn't a major concern, but yeah your trick is spot-on.
If you're farming on the overworld, though, I'll do you one better: do it on the ocean just south of Coneria and recharge at the INN there when you need to. Full HP/MP restore and a save for the low, low price of 30 GOLD.
If I never do Earthgift Shrine again, it'll be too soon. That forest level is pain personified.
I'm glad I have some surprises left in store for you guys, even the ones who know the game really well. =)