Heres a suggestion, Lifesteal gear perhaps? Like a Lifesteal sword and armor? The armor when the full set is worn makes the sword a little better? The armor would give maybe around 12%-16% DR(3%-4%DR per armor piece) and the sword would do like 4-6 Melee Damage and have maybe 300-1000 uses. Around that....
The arcana portal bug, in which you have to be careful to place the correct block last will be fixed.
It is extremely important how to place portal blocks, so take notice: First, face westwards (check in F3). Then, step INTO the place where your portal will be. Ater that, place all of the portal blocks except the rightmost in the WEST side.
In 1.6.X the placement order does not matter, as long as you place the frames in the correct pattern it should create the portal nicely.