Experience is a gameplay mechanic in Minecraft used for repairing Weapons and Tools on an Anvil, and for Enchanting items.
Unlike other games, Experience Levels are a simple currency in Minecraft. It doesn’t boost or make your character stronger depending on the level you have.
Though, farming Experience is still needed at times, especially if you want to get some of the best Weapons in Minecraft. To save up time so you aren’t just continuously hunting for Mobs or mining, the community has developed different XP farms to make the process much easier and faster.
What is an XP Farm?
An Experience farm in Minecraft is usually a build that tries to exploit some of the in-game mechanics.
The most common ones are different kinds of Mob farms that continuously spawn and kill Mobs while the player can stand by and collect both Experience and Loot.
Other ones depend on Items that usually grant Experience, such as smelting Stone or making Charcoal. Same applies to farms centered around growing crops like Kelp.
Mob XP Farms
The following XP farms will be ranked according to how easy it is to build them and how much Experience they yield for the effort.
We will start off with the easy to build ones and move on up.
#5 Cave Spider and Spider XP Farm
Spiders and Cave Spiders are hostile Mobs that can be found in underground. Both grant about an equal amount of Experience when killed. Though, what makes this an easy farm to build is the fact that finding a Cave Spider Spawner is relatively easy.
When exploring Caves you can always find a Cave Spider Spawner inside a Mineshaft. The area is already closed off (to a degree) and you won’t need to build a structure around it.
The risk comes with venturing into the Mineshaft and securing the Spawner without dying. Cave Spiders are a nuisance, because they spawn in large numbers and inflict Poison when they hit you.
Be sure to gear yourself up well and have Milk or Honey at the ready.
The basic design for a Cave Spider XP farm usually involves the Spawner inside a cave and flowing Water that will push the Spiders into a nook where you can easily kill them.
Because they’re small and can easily fit through narrow spaces you will need to make sure they have no way to climb out.
#4 Mob Spawner XP Farm
Cave Spiders aren’t the only Mobs with a Spawner. Occasionally while exploring Caves you can run into a Monster Spawner inside a room made out of Mossy Cobblestone. In these rooms not only do you find a Spawner but Chests with Loot.
Because you cannot move the Spawner or harvest it, the best thing is to use the room the game has already provided for you, just like you do with Cave Spiders.
Secure the Spawner with Torches and close off the room, leaving a single spot open for you to look into the room. I usually make the single block opening at ground level with a Hopper right beneath.
The Mobs walk up to the opening on their own when I’m near, allowing me to kill them continuously. The Hopper collects the Loot while the XP flies to me.
#3 Classic Mob XP Farm
If you can’t find a Mob Spawner of any kind, don’t fear, because a classic Mob XP farm can be made anywhere.
All that’s needed is a dark enough room for your usual hostile Mobs to spawn in. There are many different ways to kill the Mobs off. Some people choose to drown them, others use a similar tactic as you do for the Cave Spider farm.
This is a very optimal and easy to make farm that can be built anywhere and used by anyone. The resources mostly depend on the size you make. It can be anything from a single room to a multi-level tower.
#2 Raid XP Farm
A Raid is an in game mechanic that is a good way to gain plenty of Experience, Loot, and also a favor from Villagers for beating it. Though, ending a Raid in an open Village can be hard.
The community has found a way to continuously trigger Raids in an enclosed space where it is easy to beat it while reaping all the benefits.
This farm can be built by or at an Illager tower. Illagers continue to spawn in their set location even if you destroy their tower or modify it. This allows you to continuously kill them for the Bad Omen status effect that will trigger Raids.
The only other thing you will need are living Villagers with a Bed so that your farm is registered as a Village by the game.
With this farm you can get some of the more hard to get and valuable Loot, particularly Totems of Undying.
#1 Guardian XP Farm
The most rewarding Mob XP farm is certainly the Guardian farm. They are hostile Mobs that drop the second most Experience per kill, only being topped by bosses such as the Wither and the Ender Dragon.
Though, making a Guardian farm is a large task, because they only spawn in Ocean Monuments. So, to build one, you have to effectively secure a Monument.
This will likely result in many deaths and fights, and you will certainly do all your building and work underwater. For most designs that exist on the internet, most require you to effectively remove all the Water from the Monument.
Definitely a lot of hard work, but certainly the kind that greatly pays off.
Non-Mob XP Farms
If finding Spawners, locations, and overall fighting Mobs isn’t something that suits you, luckily there are XP farms that fully depend on growing crops or mining to grant you Experience Levels.
Keeping this list somewhat shorter, we will list some of the best non-mob XP farms.
#3 Kelp XP farm
To make a Kelp farm is rather simple and not much is needed to build it. The best thing about Kelp is that it can be used as food, but excess of it can be used to dry the Kelp you gather.
Simply obtain Kelp and some Water, let it grow and harvest it. Once harvested you can dry it for food, or simply use the Dry Kelp to dry your next batch in the Furnace.
It requires little effort and building and it’s a perfect start.
#2 Stone XP farm
Dirt and Cobblestone are materials that we always have an abundance of once we’ve played in a world long enough. Though if you’re not using it for building, you can use the extra Cobblestone for a continuous supply of Experience.
Smelting Cobblestone in a Furnace grants quite a bit of XP and it leaves you with regular blocks of Stone, like the kind you find in caves.
These blocks you can then place down and simply mine back up to smelt them again. Like with the Kelp, it’s a farm that fuels itself.
#1 Bamboo and Cactus XP Farm
Bamboo and Cactus are some very Biome specific crops that can be harvested and then grown anywhere. There is little effort that has to be put in growing these crops, especially Bamboo.
The way a Bamboo and Cactus XP farm works revolves around using copious amounts of Bamboo to burn Cactus to make Green Dye. Just like Stone, once the Dye is collected from the Furnace it grands Experience.
This farm can grant the most experience for the least effort. There are some designs online using Redstone to build a machine that simply does all the smelting for you. All you have to do is fuel it.
What to do Next
A good XP farm depends on where you are in the game and how many resources you have to build one.
However it can be time consuming to wait for all of your XP to come to you or grow out. So, if you want a chance of pace, you can try learning how to speedrun Minecraft.