Had a bit of a frustrating play experience last night, though it was no fault of the games, as far as I know. My computer was running slow. I don't have the world's most advanced rig, but it's usually fine for the games I want to play as they don't tend to be the bleeding edge of graphics type of game. For whatever reason, I couldn't get the game to stop hiccuping. Even so, the xp gain in Cool Ranch is so fast that I still gained two levels and am now sitting on the verge of level 22. At that point, I could start going back and completing the sidequests that were impossible at lvl 17. My first impulse is to head all the way to the end of the Cool Ranch main story quests, then go back and complete the side quests when they are a bit more trivial (and therefore faster) but I have run into some money troubles, since I have gone up so many levels so quickly. My crew, who I had kept at 2 levels below me for the entire game so far, are starting to lag a bit as funds have dried up from not doing side quests. Add to that the fact that I haven't earned any training tomes from quests and I'm in quite a pickle!
What I think I'll do is continue playing until my companions are too weak to be viable and then go back and start doing all the side quests. Hopefully, that will work everything out. I'll let you know how it goes!