The train is where you start the game. While on the train at the very beginning of the game, you talk to Rover for the first time, in the conversation which determines your name, your gender, your appearance, and your town name. Once the conversation is over, the train will stop at your town's Train Station, where you will get off and the train will depart.
Trains are also used in Animal Forest, Animal Crossing, and New Leaf as a way for visitors to come to your town, or for you to travel to somebody else's town. This is the only way of visiting somebody else's town and playing with them in these games, although in New Leaf you can also use the Dream Suite to visit someone else's town without playing together with them.
Rover is found on the train during the very first train ride at the beginning of the game.
When travelling on the train to another town, you may encounter Blanca. She will appear with a blank face, regardless of whether her face has previously been drawn on. After a little chat she will ask you to redraw her face.
Joan also appears on the train occasionally. She sits on the seat at the back, where she sometimes falls asleep.
- In Animal Forest and Animal Crossing, the train is a green carriage pulled by a steam locomotive. However, in New Leaf, it takes on the appearance of a cream-and-gray self-propelled diesel railcar, with no separate locomotive any more. Sometimes the train has a cream-and-red design, but it is very rare.
- In New Leaf, just as the train pulls into the station at the start of the game, Rover will say "I haven't done this much travelling by train since 2002 or so". This is a reference to the train ride from the start of Animal Crossing.
- Also in New Leaf, there are four trains per hour which pass by the town without stopping. These can be seen at 03, 21, 35, and 49 minutes past the hour. These do not do anything and cannot be ridden; they are simply to add realism to the game.