While a lot of character advancement is dependent on the GM, there's still some ground rules a player should know, since they directly pertain to how they will choose their character's growth.
During the course of a character's adventures, they will gain ''Advancement Points'', as awarded by the GM. One advancement point allows a character to swap out his Masteries and Maneuvers, though this can be done with any other advancement for free, two advancement points can be used to specialize in a skill, while it takes two advancement points to double-specialize in a skill, four to specialize in an attribute, and eight to specialize in a category (except Silver, which cannot be specialized in as a category). Each skill specialization raises a character's maximum Health and Stamina maximums by one point (double-specializations do nothing), each attribute specialization raises it by two, and each category specialization raises it by four. Contacts gain Advancement Points like player characters if they play a role in the adventure, even if just for one scene. Advancement points are awarded by the GM as they choose.