FFXIV: What is a Hunt Train & How Do I Join One?

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A hunt train is a player-organized group in Final Fantasy XIV, dedicated to taking down Hunt targets across the world. They usually focus on current content, taking out targets from earlier expansions if and when the opportunity presents itself.

We’ve already gone into some detail about what hunts are and how they work in a previous article, but I’ll give you a brief primer here to get started quickly.

Hunts task you with searching the world for high-value targets, divided into different ranks based on difficulty.

At first these targets aren’t too hard to find, and they respawn quickly.

But as you progress to taking on harder targets, you’ll find that the fearsome beasties you need to kill aren’t exactly readily available.

They can take hours to reappear after being killed, and can spawn in a number of different areas within a zone.

This can put a major dampener on your progress.

Hunts are a great way to spend your time in XIV, but not everyone wants to spend their time waiting for a spawn. Some targets have obscure conditions that need to be met before they appear, so it’s hard to go alone.

Even armed with detailed resources like ffxivhunt.com (which is an incredible website for hunters of any experience level), sometimes you just can’t find the damn thing in the first place.


So What Is A Hunt Train?

Hunt trains are a player-organized solution to that problem.

They usually operate through cross-world Linkshells (often abbreviated to CWLS) and Discord servers.

In-game Hunt Train A-Rank Mark in FFXIV
Image source by Succubi Pie / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

Some members will act as scouts, scouring zones for Hunt targets. When they spot it, they’ll shout it out in the Linkshell chat channel and the accompanying Discord if they have one.

From there, the game is on:

Players will rush to the target’s location and take it down as a group.

As they operate across multiple worlds, they’ll be able to take down multiple targets in quick succession. Hence the term – hunt train. Next stop, victory.

With a possible diversion to disappointment.

It’s exciting and infuriating at times.

Obviously, your hunt train won’t be the only one operating in your world, or even your much larger data center. XIV gives you the option to visit worlds within your data center, so you have the benefit of hopping to another server when a target appears – but so does everybody else!

You may find yourself in competition with other parties or hunt trains at times.

Not everyone is happy to sit there and wait for an entire hunt train to show up to get started, especially if they already have the manpower required to down the target.

There will be times you drop what you’re doing, rush over immediately to a spawn location, and still miss out on the kill.

Be prepared to miss out, even in a hunt train, but there’s not a lot of point getting worked up about it.

Group of treasure hunters in FFXIV
Image source by u/Kaporalhart / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

How Do I Join A Hunt Train?

Luckily, this is the easy bit.

The most direct way is to simply shout out for an invite to an existing train in your zone of choice. You’ll end up with an invite to a group or CWLS soon enough.

You can also join a Discord server for notifications outside of the game.

Take Centurio Hunts(Discord link) for example – it has over 60,000 members, and has been established for quite some time.

If I’m hanging around for a hunt train I like to chill out with a podcast or TV show while I wait, so having notifications come straight to my desktop when I’m not paying full attention is a necessity.

You’ll probably find it a bit easier to do things that way, too.

Hunt trains can differ wildly for different worlds and data centers, so I’d recommend doing a little bit of research yourself if you want more info beforehand.


What Are The Benefits Of Joining A Hunt Train?

It’s much easier to track down these targets in a large group.

Hunt trains will usually operate with members across multiple worlds, giving you more than one chance at killing the target as they respawn at different times.

This next one is a bit of a harsh reality, and not necessarily something that I personally agree with.

But the fact is, if you’re not in a hunt train, you’ll be competing against them for the kill.

They are greater in number since they’re basically summoning hordes of players to the location in a matter of moments.

That’s not to say hunt trains are going to shove past you and steal your kills. But the simple fact that they exist, often operating with remarkable efficiency, means that your individual opportunities are going to be more limited.

If you’re serious about hunting, you need a hunt train.

It’s not something you’ll have to dedicate a lot of time to, and you can dip in and out as you like in most cases.

Plus it doesn’t cost you anything to join one (besides some space in your chat window) and as another bonus, this can potentially link you up with like-minded players to enjoy the rest of the game with.

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