With the exception of its scrolls of enchantment — which allowed players to customize their characters not by some up-front character generation choices but by which pieces of equipment they chose to enchant — Brogue was quite similar to the original Rogue on first release. But the scrolls of enchantment were a great idea, and the strict rationing of these scrolls created strategic dilemmas not found in other roguelikes. By the time I wrote about it, other features of Brogue had already started to follow suit. The player character’s strength (and therefore, ability to use heavier weapons and armor) was no longer tied to experience level, instead being granted by potions of strength which were rationed just like scrolls of enchantment. This meant that it was no longer necessary to fight lots of enemies before getting to use better equipment, and stealthy tactics were more viable.
Still, fighting monsters for experience points to gain levels remained at the core of Brogue, and gaining levels was the only way to gain more health. Until now. With v1.7, leveling has been completely removed from the game.