I'm interested in DMing and want to know: would it be okay to award levels to the PCs at the end of the story arc instead of keeping track of XP?
The benefits I can see are:
- I don't want to write a story only for the players to blast through the ending fight due to having leveled up a few times since the beginning of the story.
- I like the idea of the abilities the PCs have at the start of the story being what they have to work with.
- It would avoid stopping the flow of the adventure with altering sheets.
- It would help planning the next arc, in that I could write the next story based on what new stuff they choose at the end of each.
I'd give the players stuff from side quests that'd help on the way, of course.
The question isn't whether these are benefits, just: is this alternative way of leveling up the PCs okay?