I think with the unwanted attention markers you make longer stays and big winnings in town riskier, especially as you go up in levels. First level it's not so bad since you only take 1d6 hits per level from the shooter, but by the time you are third level there is a good chance that shot will kill you unless you have been very lucky gaining health.
The Drifter is nasty to play at 1st level, but well worth it after a few level ups. That extra elite ability(especially with the new enemies) can kill you with one bad roll. I got crushed by 6 serpent men with one elite ability.
Also there is a lot more corruption going around now, however, there are more items to get rid of it.
If you don't mind my asking, what Elite Ability did the Serpent Men who killed you have, and what tribe were they from?