level up dnd 5e

You level up when you earn a certain amount of experience points (XP) or reach a certain milestone, depending on your DM. Monsters have XP values based on their challenge rating, and noncombat encounters provide XP at the discretion of the DM.

The XP requirements to gain a level increase dramatically a higher levels. For reference, the amount of XP from level 19 to 20 is the same as is needed from level 1 to 9.

No matter the leveling system, most DMs opt to wait for the end of a session to officially level up the party. Leveling up takes time that’s better-done out of session rather than cutting into gameplay time.

Milestone Leveling

Many DMs and players find the process of tracking XP arduous and un-fun. An easier way to pace level-ups is to simply award levels when major accomplishments are achieved.

The DMG recommends players achieve level 2 for session 2, level 3 for the session, and then two or three sessions per level from there, scaling higher at higher levels.

This is less of a bureaucratic headache and works out about the same leveling rate as a table using the XP method.

XP per level in DnD 5e

Experience Points Level
0 1
300 2
900 3
2,700 4
6,500 5
14,000 6
23,000 7
34,000 8
48,000 9
64,000 10
85,000 11
100,000 12
120,000 13
140,000 14
165,000 15
195,000 16
225,000 17
265,000 18
305,000 19
355,000 20

Player’s Handbook, pg. 15 and Dungeon Master’s Gide pg. 261

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