What is the difference between adventure rank and character level in Genshin Impact?
Character level is a measure of power of each character you have. It raises mostly by feeding your characters experience pages, and overcoming barriers by Ascension. You’ll be spending much of your “grinding” time trying to raise that. At least if you’re like me, and need to have level advantage over NPCs to win. Of course, the more characters you try to keep on the same level, the more grinding you’ll need to do, as each of them needs their own experience pages, gold and ascension materials.
Adventure rank is a measure of your party’s prestige and recognition in the world. Your progress through main quests is gated by adventure rank – you simply don’t get the next quest until your adventurer rank is high enough. It also limits how far you can upgrade your character and weapon levels.
It’s hard to “grind” adventure rank, instead, it is mostly advanced through adventuring – exploring, doing quests, going for goals in your adventurer’s handbook and otherwise playing the game.
The downside of adventure rank is, it advances “world level”, which makes the enemies more powerful. So you have to to keep your characters’ levels up to the task.
In a way, adventure rank is a measure of time passing in the game that doesn’t depend on how many hours you are playing each day.