8 Video Games That Reward You For NOT Levelling Up

Always look out for number one.

Star Wars Knights Of The Old Republic

If there's anything more synonymous with the concept of video games outside of possibly boss battles and power-ups, it's the concept of "levelling up".

The act of turning all that sweet EXP into even sweeter stat buffs for your protagonist or party is a rush so satisfying that it's only matched by the feeling of watching your new powerhouses pound enemies into base elements with their new skills.

Progression systems such as skill trees and huge pools of abilities to choose from imbue the concept of levelling up with a sense of ownership, these are my heroes now with all of the sweet spells I've chosen.

Yet, in some rare instances, the act of pumping up warriors with the old "roidy mcgoos" might not be the best method for turning your foes inside out. Indeed, many games scale their enemies to meet the player's strength or unlock harder enemies for them to face, once level caps are broken.

Therefore, today we're going to look at some examples where staying as far away from the level limit as possible was actually the best thing a player could do.

8. Final Fantasy VIII

Star Wars Knights Of The Old Republic
Square Enix

If there's one thing that the Final Fantasy series loves more than ridiculous edgelord hairstyles and dressing characters like a whirlwind passed through a charity shop, it's the concept of levelling up.

In nearly every title the player will, at some point, want to or indeed NEED to grind out some levels in order to keep pace with all of the horrible monsters looking to bite their shins off, and for the most part, it's a system that works well.

That said, FF8 scales enemies to the level of the player, meaning that the stronger you are, the stronger they become. In theory this sounds like a pretty good idea, in that it would never let the player run rampant with utterly broken level 99 powerhouses.

Yet, what this actually served to do was break the game in hilarious fashion.

While the level of enemies was tied to that of the player, this didn't stop some clever fans from realizing that you could still attach spells to your party and gain the stat buffs they provide, meaning that while they were running around as a level one character, their damage output was much much higher.

This saw players swipe spells from enemies and flee battles, avoiding the experience but gaining massive boosts to their party, turning even the final boss of this game into an utter joke, and giving birth to the now hilariously broken, no level speedruns.


Jules Gill hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.