The primary improvement to this Event from last year is the inclusion of a Farming stage, similar to those featured in the Division Collaboration 'Bounty Feast', although all of the limited drops are farmed from a single map, as opposed to multiple maps. Even better, the Drop Welfare system remains, turning the Farming Map into an all-purpose Medal/Daily Farming run.
Did I mention that this map appears to feature a Core Rate of 1.05 per run on average? A nice additional incentive to complete you daily farming runs!
Now, what Dolls will we be farming this time around?
Normally, this is where I would jump into a 'Should you Farm', or just copy the one from last year, but thanks to the repeated Drop List, but we're going to do this one a little differently. I will give a quick overview of each drop, but outside of 5-7, this list is relatively underwhelming.
Should you farm: Lightning Round!
UMP40's value has not changed since the Division Collab, that is to say, she is a collector's item, and not a serious contender for high-end Echelons. Her 500% Crit Chance Tiles are a trap, and Eteching Overload's long windup time leaves her outclassed in the role of Evasion tank by most other options, and as a DPS SMG SR-3MP or X95 will outclass her completely, and even C-MS would fare better for general use due to her versatility.
As always, if you already have 40, this is an easy skip, if you don't, farm her for collection, otherwise don't bother.
KLIN occupies an unfortunate niche in modern GFL, that of a Molotov Offtank. Situated uncomfortably between the nicely budget Skorpion and the old standby Vector, and then getting upstaged further still by the new kid on the block in Micro-Uzi's Neural Upgrade, KLIN finds it hard to stand out in a field that is both crowded and running out of usefulness. Ballooning enemy HP continues to erode the usefulness of Molotovs even against massive packs of enemies, and KLIN's lower Damage further hampers her effectiveness in her traditional role.
KLIN can be used as a cheaper Vector alternative by newer players, but the free Skorpion received from quests will perform almost as well for the content where they are relevant, and KLIN is not going to remain relevant beyond Skorpion. KLIN, therefore, remains in the realm of collection as well.
SPP-1 perhaps has fared the best of the Dolls on this list, thanks to her massive Accuracy Tiles combined with an Evasion Debuff Skill. However, this must be weighed against her lack of an offensive Skill, and desire to occupy position 4, which often used by powerful other Dolls such an Python, K5 or 5-7. To further complicate matters, ranking maps are moving away from Night battles for the foreseeable future, with all three upcoming major events (Polarized Light, Dual Randomness, and Mirror Stage) being entirely or primarily Day ranking maps, and the vast majority of story content is moving to Day maps as well.
SPP did recently have a free Skin, but isn't likely to be a high-priority farm for most players at this time.
JS05 is another entry into the list of RFs with skills relegates them to niche uses at best. Her Skill, Piercing Shot, functions similarly to traditional Bamboo skills, except it features a lower Damage multiplier, and pierces all enemies on the way to the target.
While this sounds like a useful gimmick at first, in practice JS05 will underperform compared to other RFs, as the low damage multiplier and poor area of effect combined cause the Skill to be unsuitable for either mobbing or dispatching a single target. Even the Bamboo Rework could not save her from this fate.
JS 05 is an easy skip for everyone when farming as a result.
DSR-50 is another Bamboo RF, who’s Skill is reliant on waiting to output a large burst of damage to a single target. She has the second-highest base Damage in Class, and below-average ROF for her class. These characteristics don’t particularly make for a good general use RF, although her Accuracy is one of the best in class. Her ROF stat limiting her DPS and her Skill not synergizing for general use makes her fall flat in general usage, and other, more powerful RFs will keep her out of a dedicated bamboo role.
These are not new problems to Charged Shot RFs, but DSR feels them especially keenly and even more in the context of ever stronger RF mods, and ever-stronger enemies and all combine to leave DSR stuck in the barracks, or banished to logistics for the safety of the Commander.
Five-seveN is a strong Position 4 HG, providing excellent Critical Chance and Rate of Fire Buffs to her allies, and allowing RFs to reach their full potential, and pairing well with other powerful HGs such as Px4 Storm. As one of the few RoF buffing HGs, Five-seveN is a valuable addition to any Commander's armory, able to fit into a variety of teams, with Crit Rate buffs appreciated by all, and a wide variety of DPS units looking to receive an RoF buff.
Given her frequent availability, many established Commanders likely possess all the Five-seveN they need, but for newer players, it is highly encouraged to pick up a single copy of Five-seveN. Additional Five-seveN's can be farmed if you wish, but are not required by any means.
Don't be me and farm 7 Five-seveN and then not even manage to use all of them!
As mentioned above, all of your farming will be done on a single map, shown below. Each run will offer 4 Chances at a limited drop, 3 from kills, and a final chance from the map clear, and will take 5 battles. This is true of all farming routes.
The farming route can be automated via planning mode and the map will automatically end itself, as long as you only deploy one Echelon.
Planning mode the end of a path then click to back one node (or more if you want), and planning mode will complete the mission all by itself.
The final three enemies, either Armored or the Bridal Reskins, have a chance to drop limited Dolls, and all enemies can drop 3*s.
The downside to this map, is that low-cost farming is not as forgiving as it has been in the past. For endgame Commanders, with 5* fairies this is a trivial affair, but for newer players without access to the entire GFL toolbox, this gets more complicated very quickly, especially if they are lacking depth in their armory, or lack developed Fairies.
Our primary foe is the humble Vespid. Or, in this case, not so humble, because these Vespids have been hitting the gym and deal a nice and fancy ~40 Damage or so per hit, and are reasonably Accurate besides. This is before getting to the 3 unique enemy compositions that actually drop Limited Dolls, but those are overall much easier to handle.
The Armored enemies at the bottom of the map are generally the easiest to handle if you can get past the Vespids and Ripper before them.
The Bridal Vespid/Guard combo on the left and right side of the map are substantially nastier, due to the comparatively larger number of enemies in the group. In general, avoid farming these nodes if you possibly can.
The upper half of the map behind the Ghost Brutes is a relatively straight forwards run, a lot of old standbys farming strategies are highly effective here, along with a few new ones.
For those who have been playing GFL for a long time and merely want to maximize their return on investment for Daily runs, you have a few options open to you. Note that these teams assume 4-5* fairies with 5* encouraged to minimize any chance of damage.
Agent 416/2 Crit Rate Buffers
This team uses Agent 416's pre-planted Grenades to defeat the majority of the enemies. Agent 416 should be placed in positions 4 or 5 to put her grenades in the most advantageous position. Python and Nagant are not mandatory but will have the best performance. Desired Buffs are Damage and Crit Rate. In a pinch, M4 Mod can also work just fine.
This formation is intended to farm the upper two routes and will struggle against the Armor Nodes or the enemies on the left and right of the map. This can be mitigated using M4 Mod, but Agent 416 is likely to take at least some Damage every run.
I personally never found this team to be exceptionally stable, I would flip between losing 0 and 3 links almost without explanation even on the upper routes, and either route with Guards stood a good chance of straight-up failure without M4 cannon, and still required frequent repairs with her. Now, my fairies on CN are hot garbage, and my lack of Python may contribute to this problem, but I feel it is worth pointing out that this team will struggle to farm anything but that one route, and may require some fiddling to make work.
That is fine if all you want to do is daily farm and medals for cakes, but if you are targetting a different Doll and want to combine your farming and daily runs, this may not serve your needs.
M4 Mod/Agent Vector/ (Optional by Route)HG or 2nd AR
While a bit more expensive, this seems to be a more reliable (and lower Damage) solution to farming all three possible routes for those who are willing to either spend a bit more or have slightly weaker fairies.
As with Agent 416 above, you will want to equip Agent Vector with her full set of Special Equipment, and placing all three dolls in the backline is likewise important so that there are more shields to eat shots from the enemies, and the enemies don't start firing until Vector deploys her shields.
A second AR can accelerate the process of killing enemies on the left/right routes, as the increased number of groups slows down M4's clear speed, or a Handgun (Special Mention to HS2000 for this, thanks to her buff/shield combo).
Useful primarily for farming the Armored enemies only, this formation places little demand beyond a self buffing Rifle, and at least 1 Accuacy Buffing HG. Once again special mention again goes to HS2000, who can both buff and protect her teammates from scratch damage.
First and foremost, if you don't have M4 Mod, I'm going to recommend running a full team, and not trying to minimize your resource costs. If is doable with 2 ARs, but you will take a fair bit of damage run to run.
With that in mind, on to the teams!
Shotgun/M4 Mod/HG(or 2nd AR)
As a result of the breakdown of enemy stats, Evasion Tanking the non-armored enemy paths can be extremely swingy. Sometimes, you will make it through completely scratch-free, others, you'll lose multiple links in the first battle. For this reason, for newer players, using the free SPAS to tank is likely to be more cost-effective than repeatedly repairing SMGs or HGs. As always, M4 Mod reigns supreme, blasting away whatever enemy clump she sets her sights on. If you are running the left/right routes, you may want to substitute the HG for a second AR for more DPS.
The better the Armor Plate you can put on your SG the better.