Class And Level System
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Basic Information

A class and level system is a set of RPG rules that defines a character's skill set by Character Class and tracks their development by their Character Level in one or more classes.

These systems have the benefit of being mechanically straightforward (at least in principle) and tend to be more or less balanced between classes, leading to a fairly coherent party with defined character roles.

However, they also inherit all of the disadvantages of class and level mechanics - characters tend to be over specialised in their class skill set and may well struggle unless part of a full party, levelling leads to very strange effects in development and so on.

In general, a class and level system is best suited to cinematic, gamist play and begins to creak if used for detailed, simulationist games - although as always a good group should be able to overcome the limitations of their system.

Sources

The various incarnations of D&D are probably the archetypical class and level system.

Bibliography
1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

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