It really depends on the size and scope of your game. If its just something simple that might only have a few levels in it, a level editor is a complete waste. If its an epic sprawling RPG, you'll dead need one. But in general its ALOT easier to code a basic, non-level-editor game. You just need to settle for using tricks like quick backdrops in place of fullscale visuals, in order to avoid those filesize issues.
If you're at all new to the kliking architecture, a level editor is a big bite to chew to start off with. If you're very familiar with looping and data storage, its a cakewalk.
A level editor for my project feels a bit like a waste of time. There is only going to be the one level but it is going to be massive and therefore i don't want to be dragging tile after tile into place. there must be some sort of happy medium.
You're not just dragging each object from the sidebar, are you?
You may already know this, but you can speed up the placement of multiple tiles by holding ctrl over an object and dragging it to make a copy.
i know the little tricks to speed things up a little but dragging 19650 (4800*4200) tiles into place is going to get more than a little boring. there must be a way i can create the level in full and use that without eating up so much memory.