A welcome expansion to Varmint Valley, the Gnawnian Express Station (will be referred to from here on out as “The Train”) is one of the best locations to farm gold in the entire game. While I have not done any advanced analysis on this area compared to the Furoma Cycle, the Train sure is a great place to make a lot of gold.
You’ve reached this section with one of two goals in mind: either you’re trying to figure out the way I said to make Fool’s Gold here easier or you’ve already obtained the SLAC 2 and you’re ready for some high-speed train action!
Firs things first: You MUST be on a team to hunt on the train. You can create a team by going to the “Teams” section of the HUD, and then choosing “My team.” You don’t need teammates per say, but they will make your job much easier while hunting on the train.
You also might notice that it seems that the Train is a tournament location. This is NOT TRUE. While it operates in a somewhat similar fashion, you are not competing with other teams. In fact, the opposite is true – your team and others are all working together.
Obtaining Fool’s Gold for those without SLAC 2
Simply put, you need to be on a team with experienced hunters who will not mind you hunting with them. Mainly because, you’re going to have to depend on them mostly to do most of the work so you can reap the benefits of the team rewards once the train is over. Some people DON’T LIKE THIS. I personally don’t have an issue with it because I’ve done it for two people already, but I like helping people.
If you do this method to get the SLAC 2, just hunt, and don’t worry about anything else. Join the trains (the mechanic is below) with your team and then collect your reward when you’re done.
Riding the Train
Allrightythen, you’ve got your SLAC 2 trap and you’re ready to hunt on the train. You will notice on the HUD that it lists all the trains that will be departing. Trains leave at the top of every hour only. Trains also are different lengths – 6 hours, 12 hours, and 24 hours.
Each train length does have its unique advantages and disadvantages. I personally only do 24 hour trains. Others swear by 6 hour trains. What is the difference? Look at the reward table below, then I’ll offer my opinion below the table.
|Sleeper (zZz)||Passenger (50%)||Engineer (75%)||Conductor (90%)||Tycoon (100%)|
|Iron Pellet||6 hours||1||1||1||1||2|
|Copper Bead||6 hours||1||1||1||1||2|
|Tin Scrap||6 hours||1||1||1||1||2|
|Train Badge||6 hours||1||3||3||3||5|
|Fool’s Gold||6 hours||2||6||6||6||10|
Unless you’re running a BOT (which is against the MouseHunt TOS), no one is able to stay up (at least, not all the time) for 24 straight hours. You’d think that would mean 24 hour trains shouldn’t be done, right? WRONG! 24 hour trains are the only ones worth it. Assume your reward is the Tycoon (because these are TEAM goals, and Tycoon is easy to obtain).
- To match the reward in terms of Tin Scraps, Copper Beads and Iron Pellets on a 24 hour train, you’d have to run THREE 6 hour trains or TWO 12 hour trains.
- 6 hour trains are the hardest trains to obtain the team goal because each section is only 2 hours long. If you don’t make a killing on the first section (more info on that below), you’re going to be really pushing your luck trying to make up ground on the next two sections, both of which take time (or a lot of luck on 6 hour trains).
- While 12 hour trains are easier to get the team reward than the 6 hour variety, you might as well run a 24 hour train instead because you get more time in each section.
- That being said, the advantages of 12 hour trains is that you’re likely to be active for the entire ride, whereas typically, on a 24 hour train, unless you’re starting it when you go to bed, most people tend to skimp on the last section (because they start them in the morning) and you’re likely to end up with less tin scraps as loot from just hunting mice.
All in all, I prefer the 24 hour trains. And I do mix up when I depart so I can get equal hunting in all three sections. But what is this team goal?
I’m glad you asked! Look at the image above. Each train, based on the number of hunters and teams on the train, a goal is established that your hunting party must hit to obtain the rewards in the table above. Please note this reward is for your team only. Let’s take the picture as an example: Your team must hit a total score of 34 to achieve the “Tycoon” reward. Your team score is determined based on how well you do in each of the three sections of the train.
Now, let’s take a look at the sections so this makes more sense!
The first 1/3 of the train ride takes place in the Supply Depot.
Here, the goal of your team is to collect Royal Supply Crates and load them onto the train. There are mice who carry a few crates at any time, but this is not the most effective method of securing crates. That would be by attracting the Warehouse Manager Mouse. He can only be caught by purchasing and equipping a Supply Schedule Charm. When caught, your entire team will be on a 5-hunt Supply Rush, meaning the Supply Hoarder mice will be present and can be caught, and they drop a lot of crates, sometimes up to 6 at a time.
The 5-turn Supply Rush is for your entire team, and takes place over the next five hunts for every person on the team who is on the train. What that means is, if you have a full 5 person team on the train and someone catches the Warehouse Mouse, collectively your team will have 25 hunts to catch Supply Hoarder mice!
As you collect Royal Supply Crates, load them onto the train by clicking the “Load Crates” button in the HUD. If you fail to load all your crates as this section comes to an end and you go to the next one, you can save up to 10 for your next train ride.
Now, you’re probably wondering what all these loot drops are for, including the Iron Pellets. Well my friend, take a look at the trapsmith. You’ll see three new traps listed, and each one has a power bonus with its corresponding section of the train. The Supply Grabber trap has a huge power bonus when used in the Supply Depot. Obviously, you can’t buy it yet, but that’s what the loot drops are for. It’ll take quite a few train rides to buy one of the new traps (let alone all three!), but you’ll get it eventually!
This section is my favorite of the train. It also requires you to be somewhat active as well. Let’s take a look at an example of the HUD.
In this section, your goal is to collect Mouse Repellent to attach the mice and get rid of those Raider Mice by catching them directly! Every trap check, you are guaranteed to attract (but not catch mind you) one of the Automice, which, if caught, will drop the repellent. Using the repellent will decrease the number of raiders left in that wave (and increase your score).
You also can use charms specific with each sub-section to draw out more of the raider mice personally. Look again at the HUD image above. You can see that the second charm is armed, and there is a green hazy bar next to it. When you have the right charm armed, it’ll show the green bar. However, if you have the wrong one armed (say, the first one), but the second section is the “active” section, there will be a red hazy bar instead.
The charm increases your chance of catching a raider mouse (which lowers the # of raiders in that wave), and also allows you to attract the Dangerous Duo Mouse, which, if caught, is worth 2 points instead of 1.
When your TEAM complete a wave (by accumulating 10 points, be it by using repellent or catching the Raiders), you go to the next wave of mice (they are endless!). However, there is a reward! By completing a wave, you get an additional 10 bonus points to your team point total. So, here’s how it works: you’re at 1 raider left in wave 1, which means you have 9 points built up. Getting one more point will give you a total of 10, but with the 10 bonus points, now your team will have 20 points in this section!
This is a GREAT section to knock out that team goal.
The Bandit Deflector is the Law Trap that is best for this section, offering you a tremendous power bonus.
The final section of the train is Daredevil Canyon. In this section, you again have three different charms you can use
In this section, your team goal is to collect Fuel Nuggets and stoke the train’s engine. Each hunter on the team can collect up to 20 nuggets. Now, the real reward comes from being patient. Nuggets 1-10 only stoke the engine by 1 point each. However, every nugget beyond that increases it a bit more, and stoking the engine with 20 nuggets will give your team 35 points.
That sounds like a great thing, but the problem with this stage is fuel nuggets, even on 24 hour trains, are not easy to come by. You can use the dusty coal charms to attract more Fuel Mice that drop more nuggets, but this section can be frustrating. Just keep at it. More often than not, especially on 24 hour trains, if your team has been even moderately active, you will probably have met your team goal by this time anyway.
The Engine Doubler trap is the most effective trap for the Daredevil Canyon section. Using it will give you a large power bonus.
When you complete this section, the train ride is over, and you’ll get a reward based on how well you did, plus a bonus for the community goal (which is a very small reward in and of itself).
You would be wise to remember that you’ll get much more loot and reward by simply hunting on the train. The rewards at the end are nice, but actively hunting on the train is where most of your loot comes from.