New Naturalist Role XP Guide
Guides · · by Magnar
A quick guide to earning XP in the Naturalist Role.
The Naturalist Role in Red Dead Online is one of the most confusing when it comes to levelling up and earning XP, in this guide, we’ll hopefully clear up any confusion and set you on your way to maxing out the Naturalist role.
Starting out as a level 1-5 naturalist playing “solo”.
As you start in the Naturalist Role, the XP gain will be very slow. Out of the five existing roles, it’s by far the most “grindy” up until you reach the first role tier at level 5.
The first thing you need to do is read our guide on sedating & taking animal samples that can be sold to Harriet. As to begin with, this is the easiest way to earn XP.
Upon sampling an animal, you’ll notice a completed “Category” entry in your new Animal Field Guide, with each animal belonging to a specific category.
What are animal “Categories”?
If you’ve played the Collector role, you’ll be familiar with Collectible sets. Harriet refers to her collection sets as Categories. There are several categories, each containing several animals that can be found across the map, from Wetland to Desert and more.
When you find final all of the animals that belong to a particular category, you can then take that to Harriet who’ll reward you with Cash and a hefty amount of XP!
If you’re wondering what animals fit each category, we have you covered in our Animal Field Guide.
How much is a completed Category worth?
The XP & cash earned varies depending on the category, for example, Legendary animal categories are worth much more than Desert or Farmland categories. However, this is a beginner guide so we will focus on the Desert Habitats Category.
The Desert Habitats Category has 14 animals, all of which can be found in New Austin. They’re all common animals found everywhere in New Austin, like Iguanas, Bucks, Sheep & Rams.
If you sedate & sample all 14 of the Desert Habitats animals, you can sell them all to Harriet for 700 XP. Harriet will then stamp your samples, which will result in a completed Desert Habitats category which can also be Traded in via your Animal Guide Book for $80 and 1000 XP.
To summarise, you can earn 1700 XP in a short amount of time just by sampling animals from the desert. Each level in the role requires 2000 XP so you can level up in no time at all.
TIP: Our Animal Field Guide can help you locate any elusive critters.
You should do this until you hit level 5, at which point you unlock legendary animal missions.
Legendary Animal Missions.
When you reach level 5, Harriet will give you assignments to track down and take samples of legendary animals. The Legendary Animal missions can range from tracking down a beaver, to taking on a massive Bear or even a Cougar!
Completing these missions will net you 300 XP, and you’ll also receive a Legendary Animal Sample that can be given to Harriet for an extra 400XP.
The Legendary Animal missions do have a 45-minute cooldown, however you’ll unlock more missions as you progress through the role.
Have a friend above level 5? Join legendary missions to earn XP much faster!
If you have friends who are already level 5 and above in the Naturalist role, you can join their posse and take part in their Legendary animal missions, earning the same amount of XP as you would if you started the mission yourself.
Playing with friends also helps you avoid cooldowns for the Legendary Animal missions, as you’ll be able to complete your friend’s missions and then do your own.
All ways to earn XP in the Naturalist Role:
You will earn XP for the following:
- 10 XP for reviving a sedated animal (requires expensive tonics)
- 50 XP for studying an animal
- 50 XP for selling an animal sample
- 150 XP for completing a poacher mission
- 300 XP for completing a Legendary animal mission
- 400 XP for selling a Legendary animal sample
Things to keep in mind:
- Reviving animals is costly, as the tonics are expensive and you only earn 10XP.
- Poacher missions net very little XP for the time it takes to complete them, your time is better spent sampling wild animals or completing the Legendary Sightings for Harriet.
Naturalist Role XP Guide Tips:
Tip 1: You can only have 1 of each animal sample “stamped” within each category at a time. The most efficient way of selling categories is to sell Harriet 1 of each sample until a category is completed, you can then trade the category in for bonus cash & XP and do it again.
Tip 2: If you have the Outlaw Pass, you can unlock a Role XP boost that will increase your XP gain by 15%, 25% or 30% depending on which you have unlocked.
Tip 3: If you have Twitch Prime linked, you can earn XP/Benefits via the Outlaw Pass a little quicker which can help you get to level 5 and start completing your own legendary missions.
Tip 4: You can go to Emerald Ranch and earn XP/Samples from all of the farm animals, as sedating them won’t get you in trouble with the law!
Tip 5: Legendary Animals can be found in free-roam as soon as you start the role, however, they are very rare, so it’s not worth spending too much time searching for them. It’s better to encounter them randomly as you do other activities.
If you have any other questions about the Naturalist Role, you can ask us on Twitter @RedDeadRDC or by joining us on Discord.