5E How/when Do You Level?

How do you handle leveling in your 5E game?

  • We pay to train, using downtime and such, before we level.

    Votes: 5 8.5%
  • We train on our own before we level.

    Votes: 1 1.7%
  • We level following a long (or short) rest.

    Votes: 20 33.9%
  • We level after the scene/ encounter is over.

    Votes: 9 15.3%
  • We level on milestones.

    Votes: 19 32.2%
  • Other.

    Votes: 5 8.5%

  • Total voters
    59

Horwath

Adventurer
Milestone leveling, but you get extra HPs, spell slots after next long rest.(no Diablo style instant full HP&MP after getting a milestone)
 

Arvok

Explorer
I've used all these and even once had characters level up during a big encounter when I had screwed up as DM and was going to TPK if I didn't throw them a bone.

I think level 1 to level 2 should be a pretty easy jump, but after that characters need to train before they get the benefits of leveling. There are always exceptions, though.
 

Weiley31

Adventurer
While I prefer and like the idea of how Milestone leveling and how it can be nice if a certain achievement is done, it feels like you'd level up to 20 real quick if you go straight milestoning.

And while I don't mind XP handling, well I really like the other option.
 
My only complaint with in session leveling is that there always seem to be that one player who goes deep into the tank deciding what spell to take or whatever and it bogs the whole session down. Less of an issue with more exerienced players likely, but that's why I tend to do it at the end or in between sessions (the actual paperwork part).
Our take on that is to do the easy stuff right then and wait until a break to figure out the harder stuff. It doesn't take as much time away from actual playing time that way. Plus, if you know you are getting close to leveling, you should already have your choices mostly picked out.
 

evilgaz

Co-host of What Would The Smart Party Do? Podcast
Milestone is good for us. Whenever feels sensible in the narrative - i.e. if they're still down a dungeon somewhere it's probably not going to happen there and then, but it can. After slaying a dragon seems a good time for mystical energies to infuse the characters. We've got a lot more relaxed about this kind of thing as we've got older and focus on what is important and feels right. :)
 
Voted my preference, which is milestones.
While I prefer and like the idea of how Milestone leveling and how it can be nice if a certain achievement is done, it feels like you'd level up to 20 real quick if you go straight milestoning.

And while I don't mind XP handling, well I really like the other option.
Interesting. I get the opposite impression, tbh. IIRC, using XP awards with default rests and recommended XP/per day in the DMG, a party levels from 1 to 20 in a little over one month. (I'm new to 5e, though, so perhaps I did the numbers wrong?) Granted, there could be long lulls between adventures, but in general 5e seems to be designed with the assumption that powering up happens really, really fast by default.

I don't quite see how to significantly slow down PC progression without using milestones in place of XP.
 

Scottoz

Villager
Now, almost all my other campaigns have immediate level up once the PC acquires the XP they need to level (which is gotten through combat and social interaction challenges). It takes two minutes to do during the session, particularly as players are encouraged to think about what they want for their next level prior to it happening. But I'm choosing downtime leveling paid for by gold for the reasons stated above for the next campaign. I don't recommend it for every campaign.
Did your players receive full health and spent spell slots back when levelling this way especially if during a dungeon crawl? Or did they gain increased maximum health, keeping their current hp and same for spell slots?
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
Did your players receive full health and spent spell slots back when levelling this way especially if during a dungeon crawl? Or did they gain increased maximum health, keeping their current hp and same for spell slots?
They get whatever they gain for the level up immediately. They don't regain they've already spent that adventuring day. They're just leveling up, not resting.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Other.

They level when they level (xp are only given out after a night's rest) but only get a few benefits at that point; most of the new level's benefits require paid-for training during the next downtime.
 

dnd4vr

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
A quick point is we level-plan between sessions. Since most of us use pdfs for character sheets, we pre-level our characters between sessions so when they reach the next level during game time, we already have the new level done. It saves a lot of in-game time. :)

For example, we just finished our session as 4th level, so before our next session I will make 5th level versions so they are ready to play as soon as I level up.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I realized I never mentioned how we level. We level between sessions when the DM tells us to. Sine the DM (me or otherwise) are doing milestone/story/etc XP, it's never at a point like mid-combat.

Now, in one group just about everyone except me uses apps for their character sheets and it seems half the time they just show up early to the next session and do it then, often with insight from others in the group.
 
I have played with milestones, though currently we play with training required (using downtime) however if the character is unable to train but acquires enough experience to go up a second level then training is not required (unless they are choosing a feat) and the experience resets to the beginning of the level.
 

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