I made a little progress. After watching the preview in slow motion, I discovered that when in wipe mode, it would wipe all the way around the circumference of the string test towers until it got back to the starting point (I'm using the little pyramid test from thingiverse). That's not ideal since it makes a full orbit and ends up back in the "wet spot". I discovered why. I had the option checked to retract when wiping and since my retract settings were 5mm at a 40mm/s speed, it keeps wiping until the retraction is done. So even if I set wipe to only 2mm, it'd wipe something like 8mm. The issue seems to be that since my print speed is higher than my retraction speed, it wipes to 60/40*<retraction distance> before it stops. And if the wipe does a full orbit, it always stops where it started. In essence, since my retraction distance is 5mm, retraction speed is 40 mm/s and print speed is 60mm/s, it was wiping 60/40*5 or 7.5mm regardless of what wiping discance you specify. You could specify 3mm wiping distance and it'd still try to wipe 7.5mm unless (as in the tiny string test towers) it runs out of "virgin" layer to wipe on before it gets back to its starting wipe point: then it just stops where it started the wipe and ends up on a wet spot.
Kinda hard to explain but given my settings, retract when wiping conflicted with the wipe distance. Once I turned off the retract when wiping option, I got the specified wiping distance and if I set it to something like 3mm, it wouildn't make a full orbit around the towers and the stringing was improved because it didn't orbit all the way around to where the wipe first started. It still has stringing on the top half of the pyramid towers where they get really thin, but that's because there's not enough surface area to wipe there. But it did stop the stringing on about the bottom 50% of the towers where they are a little thicker.
I think I'll end up doing like I said previously and just make multiple processes where only the top couple layers get z-lift (to prevent scraping on the top of models). As of now, that looks to me like the only way to have the best of both worlds, even if it's a bit tedious.