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I want to maximize the experience I get while playing so I get more points to spent in skills and my character, because my character is fairly weak and I don't seem to loot much new good items for now. I'm afraid that my low level will get me killed when trying to go for the harder stuff to loot better items.

What are the different kinds of actions that result in experience? Which of them result in the most?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

The system is levelled - you won't find hugely difficult things you cannot beat. Except giants.

Actions that level up skills:

  • Attacking someone with a weapon
  • Casting a spell on someone or something (things like Clairvoyance do nothing)
  • Sneaking and not being seen in the presence of enemies
  • Opening a lock - seems breaking a lockpick also gives skill xp
  • Picking a pocket
  • Buying or selling something.
  • Successfully persuading/intimidating someone (I think)
  • Training
  • Some quest rewards (Finding the Anden family sword gives you +1h and +block)
  • Creating a piece of armour or a weapon
  • Enchanting/disenchanting something
  • Taking damage whilst wearing armour
  • Making a potion or a poison

The list isn't exhaustive, though.

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To clarify, the only determining factor in the leveling bar is skillups. There is no "xp" per se, just levels of skills increased. –  Raven Dreamer Nov 12 '11 at 15:56
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