What is Pony Farming in Final Fantasy XIV?

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Pony farming is the repeated completion of certain Extreme Primal fights in XIV.

These encounters have a chance to reward players with an exclusive mount upon completion. And if you gather all six ponies in FFXIV, you can then unlock a seventh even shinier mount as a bonus.


What’s The Point In Pony Farming?

The mounts are cool. And at this point, they’re much easier to get than you’d think.

Each one is uniquely themed after their respective Primal, and will even play their boss music as you travel around.

If you’ve ever queued for Akh Afah Amphitheatre just to hear Shiva’s music kick in when she uses Diamond Dust, you’ll love getting your hands on the Boreas mount.

Pony farming isn’t essential to the story, and you don’t need to do any of these fights if you don’t want to.

But with one exception, they’re pretty easy, especially if you’ve already got a job at level 80.

You don’t need to wait for level 80 to pony farm, but it makes the process a bit more palatable.


How Do I Start Pony Farming?

The first step is having the right Extreme Trials unlocked.

You’ve seen all of these fights before, but Eorzea’s Primals are out in full force in the Extreme trials.

They’re much more challenging than before. And although they share some mechanical similarities, it’s a completely different experience if you’re doing them as intended.

I’ve listed the Trials you need and their respective unlock quests below.

You’ll also need to have completed A Realm Reborn before tackling these. And you’ll need to complete the questline that unlocks the Hard versions before you take a run at Extreme.

These will unlock sequentially, starting with a quest named Primal Nature, leading you to each Extreme Trial in turn.

  • The Howling Eye (Extreme): Gale-force Warning
  • The Navel (Extreme): Quake Me Up Before You O’Ghomoro
  • The Bowl of Embers (Extreme): Ifrit Ain’t Broke
  • The Whorleater (Extreme): Whorl of a Time
  • The Striking Tree (Extreme): Judgment Bolts and Lightning
  • Akh Afah Amphitheatre (Extreme): Drop Dead Shiva

You don’t need to have all of these unlocked to start pony farming.

But you definitely need them all to complete the set and unlock Kirin, the special seventh mount.

Kirin mount and all ponies / FFXIV
Image source by u/Destrukthor / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

If you don’t care about Kirin, or if there’s only a couple of ponies you want, you’re totally free to just farm the fights that drop them.

Once you’ve got the Trials unlocked, it’s just a case of heading into the duty as an undersized party (therefore preventing the game from syncing you to the Trial’s intended level) and thrashing the boss until it finally gives up a mount.

There’s something comically fun about heading into these fights and absolutely trashing them with a couple of players.

The process is much easier with a friend or two – soloing this content at level 80 is far from impossible, but it’ll go much faster with some extra DPS onboard.

Pony farming is repetitive, so ideally you want these fights to end as quickly as possible. If you don’t have any friends who want to pony farm, you can usually find groups going in the party finder or by asking around in chat channels.

Just repeat the fights until they drop the mounts.

Once everyone’s got the mount, move onto the next Trial.

The exact drop rates aren’t public knowledge. But they’ve been estimated at around 20% these days.

And just to be clear, that’s not an overall 20% – so repeating the fight five times doesn’t guarantee you at least one mount drop.

It’s 20% for each independent clear.

Every time you finish the fight, the mount would have a 20% chance of dropping.

When the mount drops (they’re represented as Whistles, which you can then use to “learn” the mount) everyone will roll, and the winner takes the spoils.

If you’re in a group, it’s generally considered polite to stick around until everyone’s got their pony.


How Long Does Pony Farming Take?

How long is a piece of string? We got all the ponies for our group of four in a couple of nights, and dedicated maybe 4-5 hours to it overall.

It’s entirely possible to get them all in less time, just as it’s possible to be very unlucky and have it take much longer.

Our biggest sticking point was Leviathan, encountered in The Whorleater (Extreme).

His fight is the most mechanically punishing of all six, even for level 80 players.

He has several invulnerability phases, and will destroy the sides of the ship you’re on. As he moves around the arena he can toss inattentive players overboard, killing them instantly.

It’s not hard. But you can’t just stand there and burn him down with excessive DPS while laughing off any attacks coming your way.

Personally, I am useless in The Whorleater.

I’m a career tank – standing in one spot and hitting things is all I know.

It didn’t help that for us, Leviathan seemed to be the most reluctant to give up his mount.

Your mileage may vary, though.

If you have a somewhat competent group that can clear the fight with a minimum of fuss, you should be riding Enbarr in no time.

Kirin mounts with two players / FFXIV
Image source by u/falsepath / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

How Do I Unlock Kirin Through Pony Farming?

This is actually pretty simple.

Once you’ve unlocked Aithon, Xanthos, Gullfaxi, Enbarr, Markab ,and Boreas (the entire series of Primal ponies) you’ll be able to start the quest “A Legend for a Legend”.

You can pick this up from the Wandering Minstrel in Mor Dhona.

It’s a simple quest, tasking you with climbing some crystal cliffs (or simply flying over them) and blowing a magical pipe to call Kirin forth.

This legendary mount has been waiting for a suitable master for centuries.

He’s definitely the shiniest out of the set, and a nice bonus for all that time you’ve just spent killing Leviathan.

As one final note, completing Ifrit, Garuda, or Titan’s Extreme Trials also have a chance to reward you with a Nightmare Whistle, which can be used to summon the broody Nightmare mount.

Collecting Nightmare is not required to unlock Kirin, so consider him a bonus too.

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