Rate of Advancement
The AD&D game is intentionally very flexible concerning how slowly or quickly
characters earn experience--in general, this is left to the discretion of the
DM. Some players prefer a game of slow advancement, allowing them time to
develop and explore imaginary personalities. Other players like a much faster pace
and a definite feeling of progress. Each DM and his players will likely settle
into a pace that best suits their group, without even realizing it.
There is only one hard and fast rule concerning advancement. Player characters
should never advance more than one level per time experience is awarded. If a
gaming session ends and a character has earned enough experience points to
advance two levels, the excess points are lost. The DM should give the character
enough experience to place him somewhere between halfway and one point below the
next highest level.
An average pace in an AD&D game campaign is considered to be three to six
adventures per level, with more time per level as the characters reach higher
levels. However, it is possible to advance as quickly as one level per adventure or
as slowly as 10 or more adventures per level. The DM should listen to his
If the players are enjoying themselves and aren't complaining about "not
getting anywhere," then things are fine. If, on the other hand, they grouse about
how they never get any better or they're quickly reaching the highest levels in
the game, the pace of advancement probably needs to be adjusted. This, like much
that deals with awarding experience, may not come to a DM immediately. Let
experience be your guide.
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