Trainers have a maximum level of 50 and generally level by achieving a Milestone or by collecting 10 Trainer Experience (TE).
Milestones are pretty straightforward for leveling up. Each milestone awards 1 immediate level and should be given for achieving a significant goal. These goals could be gaining a badge from a gym or a ribbon from a contest if your game follows a traditional format. Milestones are mostly arbitrary and decided by the GM as they see fit.
Trainers all have an Experience Bank to collect Trainer Experience (TE). Whenever the amount of TE in a trainer's Experience Bank reaches 10 or more, immediately subtract 10 and gain a level. Milestones will never interfere with the Experience Bank.
In a standard game. There is only one automatic way to get experience: Pokemon. Catching, Hatching, or Evolving a pokemon that they did not already have awards 1 experience to the trainer.
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Other Trainer Experience can come from single encounters, but GMs should remember to think about significance to the plot or the challenge of the encounter. Easy battles that don't take much effort typically are not worth any points, while average challenges with trainers or wild pokemon could be worth as many as 2 points. Significant battles that aren't worth a Milestone by themselves might award as many as 5 experience. Keep in mind that winning is not everything however. If the players "lose" an encounter that would have awarded a Milestone they may still gain a few points, more if the trainers will not be able to retry or if the encounter was especially important. It's all about the balance! Got it?
Course, there will be times when little happens in the game, and as a GM you may want to give out a point or two if the players made progress or had an especially enjoyable game.In the end, what will and will not give experience is entirely up to the GM. For simple games these are some guidelines that promise an average progression for the players, but maybe your game has nothing to do with gyms and leagues and the experience will have to come from other sources.
Effects of LevelingEdit
- Every level, gain a Stat Point. Unlike Pokemon, Trainers do not have to adhere to a Base Relation with their stats.
- Every odd level, gain a Feature or an Edge.
- Every even level, gain an Edge.
- Every level that you unlock a new Rank of a Skill (Level 2 for Adept, 6 for Expert, and 12 for Master), gain an additional Edge. This Edge can be used on any skill that is lower than the one just unlocked or any other Edge you meet the prerequisites for.
When a trainer realizes they want to undo a choice they made, they can spend some Trainer Experience or TE to Retrain and change themselves. This process takes time so usually it takes place during periods of rest. Retraining needs remaining TE to spend; so you cannot "go back" a level to retrain.
In general, you should ask the GM about retraining. If they feel you have used the Feature too often or losing it would be too noticeable in-character, they have the final word on if it can be retrained.
You may not:
- Retrain an Edge or Feature that is a prerequisite of an Edge or Feature you have.
- Retrain an Edge or Feature that has permanent effects that you have already used. For example, if you have used Move Tutor or Type Shift, then you may not retrain those Features.
- Lower an Attribute below -2 this way.
- Spend 2 TE to lower an Attribute by one Rank and raise another by the same.
- Spend 2 TE to replace a Feature for another.
- Spend 1 TE to replace an Edge for another.
- Spend 1 TE to move one Stat Point to another.