Borderlands 2 – XP Level Farming Guide

Trying to get up to level 72/80? Here is a simple method of XP farming I […]

Trying to get up to level 72/80? Here is a simple method of XP farming I use in Ultimate Vault Hunter Mode to gain XP relatively quickly and painlessly. This does not require any special equipment. In terms of time involved, it is about equal to farming major bosses such as the Warrior or BNK3R but is less labor intensive and doesn’t require special gear or much preparation.

Yes, these bosses yield a lot less XP than a major boss but you can get to them and kill them much faster and easier than a major boss, making things even out.

Overview Level Farming

There is a basic method and a more extended method that is useful for farming gear in addition to XP.

The basic method is as follows:

1. You need to complete 2 side quests: The Good, the Bad, and the Mordecai (found on the Sanctuary Bounty Board) and the entire Clan War (Zafords vs. Hodunks) series of missions (given by Ellie in The Dust). You should be familiar with these missions from earlier playthroughs.

2. The only piece of gear I recommend is the Moxxi’s Endowment relic which gives additional XP. This is a mission reward from The Good, the Bad, and the Mordecai so it will be obtained automatically when using this method. The amount of XP it gives goes up with it’s level but not by much. For example, I have a level 37 which grants +7.4% XP vs. a level 61 which grants +9.3%.

3. Once you have completed the 2 side missions you simply farm the 3 minor bosses from those missions who spawn in The Dust: Papa/Tector Hodunk OR Mick Zaford at the train station, then Gettle AND Mobley at the church. After killing all three, save/quit, rinse, repeat. This is the “basic” method.

4. Of course this is UVHM so the enemies will all level up as you level up and XP will ramp up
accordingly. In terms of actual XP, each boss will yield 5000+ at the lower levels (Approx. Levels 55-70) and 6000+ at the higher end (Levels 70-80). This is not counting the bonus from Moxxi’s Endowment or the extra XP from things like killing off the Hodunk/Zaford grunts who spawn with the boss.

5. As a side effect of this method you will be farming some fairly useful legendaries that drop from
each of the bosses: The Maggie or Slagga from Zaford or Hodunk and the Lyuda and Veruc from Gettle and Mobley, respectively.

Method Details

To start off, comlplete both the side missions. They are both long, extended side missions but I recommend doing The Good, the Bad, and the Mordecai first since it is a bit shorter and you can secure the Moxxi’s Endowment early.

At the end of the Clan War series of missions you will be forced to pick a side and this will determine which boss will respawn at the train station. Whichever side you kill off will be the one that respawns, so if you want Mick Zaford to be the respawning boss, kill him, etc.

Papa/Tector Hodunk is definitely the easier boss to farm for several reasons: He spawns on the other side of the train from where you spawn, giving you more time to prepare when spawning in. They are a bigger target. He is usually armed with shotguns which are less effective at range and he drops the Slagga which I find to be more useful than the Maggie, especially in UVHM.

Mick Zaford, on the other hand, spawns right next to you on the train platform giving you a lot less time to react (this also makes him faster to find and kill, however). His shield lets him turn invisible, his weapons are usually very powerful and he is a smaller target than the Hodunk boss. Even so, he is still fairly easy to kill and shouldn’t be much trouble. I recommend killing the main boss first, and then all of the grunts after, in case you need one of them get a second wind.

In order to make the train station your spawn point simply fast travel to Lynchwood then jump down and take the exit to The Dust at the train. After that you will respawn on the platform at the Dust Train Station every time after you save/quit.

Once you have spawned in and killed your Zaford/Hodunk boss of choice and their grunts, grab a vehicle from the Catch-A-Ride (which is right there) and start heading for the church. You can see the steeple silhouetted against the sky in the distance. Head slightly to the right of it using your turbo boost.


You can check the 2 spiderant spawnpoints on either side of the rock formation directly in front of you at the train station. You will be driving through one of them anyway. The other one simply involves circling around the rock formation. If you see a red queen (Procreator) spawn at either one of these points it is well worth the time to get out of the vehicle and kill her since she will give the same amount of XP (5-6000+) as the bosses. You must be out of the vehicle and on foot. Killing anything with a vehicle yields a fraction of the XP that it would killing it on foot.

Once you get to the other side of the Dust near the church you will be looking for this ledge. Exit the vehicle and jump up on this ledge. Walk along the ledge until you are able to jump up behind the church. You almost certainly WILL be harassed by a gyro and a couple of bandit technicals at the ledge. But they shouldn’t be much of a problem if you have decent equipment. Do not ignore them as the technicals in particular can put you in FFYL pretty quickly if you aren’t paying attention. The bandit technicals are also worth a good 1200-1900 XP if you kill them on foot (the Lyuda is great for this).

Walk around to the front of the church and Mobley will come out. Gettle jumps in from the direction of the Hyperion Gulag (to the left) a few seconds later. However you want to kill them is up to you. They will mostly ignore you and fight each other if you don’t shoot first. You can kill Mobley as soon as he comes out and then Gettle when he arrives. Or wait for Gettle and kill him first, since he is usually the harder boss. It really doesn’t matter. It’s all personal preference at this point. Kill them both, save/quit, rinse, repeat.

Here is the whole cycle:

Extended Method

As a variation, there is a more extended method that can be used to farm better gear in addition to XP.

Instead of quitting after killing Gettle and Mobley, you jump down into the ravine (Bug Gulch) on the other side of the church graveyard.

Notes and Commentary

If you have an easier or more efficient XP farming method for UVHM, please post about it here or make a guide. I don’t claim to be an authority. This is just what works for me.

Q: “Couldn’t you just spawn in and farm the Zaford/Hodunk boss, quit, repeat?”

A: Absolutely. Go right ahead if it works for you. I find it a little too tedious myself. Driving across the dust to farm 2 more bosses for double the XP seems like it evens things out time-wise for me. It really boils down to personal preference.

Q: “Why is this better than farming The Warrior or BNK3R or other major boss?”

A: While they do yield more XP and (usually) better loot, most of those bosses usually take longer to kill (unless you have a specialized character or gear) and initially require fighting through a large area to get to their lair/chamber/stronghold. This adds a pretty significant amount of time to farm them. With this method, spawning in to the area where you farm these minor bosses is immediate and can be done at any time, just about instantly, as long as you can get to a fast travel station. Also, farming for loot AND XP at the same time is somewhat counterproductive since the loot will be far less useful after a few levels. The primary aim of this mehtod is just XP while the loot is incidental.

I used to do a different version of this method that involved spawning at Ellie’s and going through Bug Gulch, killing Gettle and Mobley and then jumping back down into the ravine to see if the Black Queen would spawn (in the flat area behind the bandit camp). The Black Queen was worth a significant amount of XP (like 12000+) and spawned quite often. With the current version of BL2, however, I never see a Black Queen spawn at all. If you know a way to make her spawn more often, or at all, let me know.

When you are on the train platform look to see if the Gwen’s Head box has spawned. It will be on the part of the platform closest to the Catch-A-Ride (near the 2 Dahl dumpsters). Note that I happen to get one in the video above. It’s a decent pistol and will always be at your level if you need a new weapon right away.

1 thought on “Borderlands 2 – XP Level Farming Guide”

  1. I think the Black Queen has a chance to spawn if you aggravate the last group of ant creeps in the ravine, to the N after you kill Gettle.

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