This all began when someone in my group said leveling systems annoyed him as getting loads of abilities at once (i.e. gaining a level) felt unnatural compared so a continuous advancement system (We've been playing WFRP 2 recently). So taking a suggestion from him I've tried to throw something together.
Characters still advance through classes as normal. The only difference here is the levels are gained in parts, rather than all at once. The biggest benefit is that the character generally gains something after every session.
A character gains the abilities from their next level by spending Advancement Points (AP). A whole level costs 23AP. Each component of the level (BA, Fort, Ref, Will, Def, init, Lifestyle, Legend, SP, Class Abilities, Vitality and Skill Points) must all be bought separately. The cost of each advancement is 1 point for a low track, 2 points for a medium track and 3 for a high track, class abilities is always considered to be a high track. Every advancement must be bought to complete the level, even if a track gives no bonus at that level. (SIDE NOTE: this might work well with fractional ability tracks, so there was always some perceivable benefit from spending the AP, as well as the bonuses this brings to multi-classing).
Once the level is completed, the player gains the following benefits
- They now count as a character of that level. (important for spell casters)
- They gain any non-class dependent benefits, i.e. feat, AD, attribute bonus etc.
- They can now being purchasing abilities from their next level.
Note that when buying skill points, the character counts as the level they're buying for, to determine maximum ranks.
So for example. A level 5 Soldier becomes a level 6 Soldier by spending 23 points as such
3AP BAB +1
2AP Fort +0
1AP Ref +1
3AP Will +1
2AP Def +1
2AP Init +1
1AP LS +1
2AP Legend +0
3AP CA Weapon specialist
1AP Skills 4+Int (max ranks 9)
3AP Vit 12+Con
These can be bought in any order. Once all have been bought the character becomes level 6, his AD increase to 4(d6), he gains a feat and an interest.
Is it clear? I'm sure the language could be cleaned up somewhat.
I imagine with a little extra effort it could be made to work from XP instead. However since we've not used XP for advancement in any of our group's games for years, I didn't really feel the need to work that bit out. As a GM I usual aim for 1 level per 2/3 sessions. So if using this I may hand out 8 to 10 AP per session.