Experience points, or EXP, are what can be called a character's overall experience, and are acquired by defeating monsters and completing quests. Each monster has a specific experience value, and various monsters offer different amounts of experience once they are defeated.
Each level requires a certain number of experience points in order to advance. A character levels up once they have earned the required amount of experience points. This can be found by hovering your cursor over the EXP meter, or on the character ability window, while the percentage of EXP acquired to reach the next level is displayed above the EXP meter.
Earning and Losing EXP
Once a monster is defeated, its total experience points are split among players who dealt damage to the defeated monster. Players who hunt monsters in a party enjoys additional bonus EXP. EXP gained is reflected by the filling of the EXP Bar and the increasing of the EXP Percentage.
In addition to gaining EXP, a character loses 10% of the experience needed to reach the next level if they die. If a character has less than 10% of the EXP needed to reach it, their experience simply returns to zero, and the character stays at the same level; this means levels cannot be lost. Having a higher LUK stat will cause the EXP loss to be reduced. With less than 10 LUK, exactly 10% of the experience will be lost upon death. This amount steadily decreases with an increase in the LUK stat until the minimum of 5%, which requires a LUK stat greater than 75. In addition, dying in a town or on a ship will result in a minimal loss of EXP of about 1%. Some one-use cash items, such as the Easter Charm, and Safety Charm prevents the loss of experience.
Beginners do not lose experience upon death.
The amount of experience to gain a level is listed here.
When a character acquires enough experience, he or she will gain a level. Any experience beyond what is needed to gain the level will be applied to the requirement for the next level. Each level requires more experience to attain than the previous one. The character receives 3 Skill Points (Beginners get 1 Skill Point per level until level 7, useable only for Beginner Skills) and 5 Ability Points. These Ability Points may be used to increase the Strength (STR), Dexterity (DEX), Intelligence (INT), or Luck (LUK). The character's Max HP and Max MP also increase, with the amount of increase depending on various factors like job class, passive skills, such as Max MP Increase and Max HP Increase for Magicians and Warriors, respectively. Leveling up may also make new quests available. Most characters have a level cap of 200, the one exception being Cygnus Knights, who have a level cap of 120.