How to Level Up & Unlock PvP in Population Zero

Learn how to level up your character and unlock the PvP mode with the help of this guide to Population Zero.

Many players have been complaining about Population Zero's XP and leveling system and the hurdles they face getting into the game's PvP server, which unlocks at Character Level 2. "How do you level up in Population Zero" has been a big topic in the game's Steam forums since its release into Early Access. 

It doesn't help that the game's 7-day progression cycle is a tad bit nebulous, with players not being able to see XP gains until the make a full rotation or give up and kill themselves. In short, XP collects during a single playthrough or set of missions and carries to subsequent playthroughs. 

This guide will show you how to level up your character in Population Zero, so you can start playing the PvP mode now instead of later. 

How to Level Up in Population Zero

Step 1: Complete Missions

Aside from giving you a few random, temporary perks, Population Zero doesn't reward players for free-roaming. No XP is gained by free-roaming, so it's important to follow the directions given by NPCs at the game's hub for missions and side-missions. 

If you wish to level up and get to Character Level 2 faster, then you need to complete at least the first two missions given by the NPC named Radov. Afterward, PvP mode will be accessible. 

Radov can be found at the game's hub above the ground floor of the station. He will ask you to bring some samples of the Void scattered around the world, as well as collect some materials.

If you do these two missions, you will get your first 400 XP points, which is enough to level up your character to Level 2.

Step 2: Give Up Your Session

The game ends your session every seven days and wipes out all your progress. However, your XP is preserved, which means that if you have earned 400 XP (which you certainly have if you've played for seven days), you will unlock the PvP mode after the reset.

Unfortunately, the reset doesn't take place until seven real-life days pass. So in order to get to PvP mode faster (or simply see your XP gains grow as you would in any other RPG or MMO), you need to give up your session in the game's menu.

Here's how to do it:

  1. Start the game
  2. Open the game's menu
  3. Select "Give up!" option
  4. Confirm the end of the session

Once you've given up your session, your character will automatically level up and the PvP mode will be unlocked as soon as you start a new gaming session.

That's it on how to how to level up in Population Zero. Like almost any other RPG or MMO, you level up by completing missions and going on quests. The only difference is you won't see your XP gains until the game makes a full cycle or you give up. For more, be sure to check out our other Population Zero guides.


Sergey has been a freelancer in the video games industry for more than five years, writing for various publications around the world. His favorite games are MtG, Dark Souls, Diablo, and Divinity: Original Sin.

Published May. 12th 2020

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