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  • [REVIEW] Kantai Collection Spring 2016 Event: Establish the Land-Based Air Corps

    Kantai Collection has finally launched their latest event, which is the Spring 2016 Event: Establish the Land-Based Air Corps. In this latest event, five new ships are introduced to the game’s PC version, including the Battleship from the United States, Iowa.

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    But before you can get your hands on that feisty American, admirals must finish SEVEN maps, and some of them are really quite hard, even if you play it on EASY. The event also introduces a new mechanic called the Land Base Aerial Support, which can be a huge help in clearing a few maps, but we will discuss about that later.

    Let’s start with E-1, which is the first map that admirals will encounter, and quite possibly, the easiest map in the event, as the boss is only an elite Ta-Class Battleship, though you may run into a few submarine nodes along the way.


    Ship locking is in play for the event, but only for the medium and hard difficulties, and as I really wanted to get Iowa as quickly as possible, I went easy all the way. E-1 is a combined fleet map, which means you would have to use up your main fleet and secondary fleet. As with all events, branching rules apply, and the recommended composition for E-1 is either two Fast Battleships, two Light Aircraft Carriers, and Heavy Cruisers in the main fleet, and one Light Cruiser and Five Destroyers in the secondary fleet. As this was in easy, my fleet quickly brushed this map aside, and don’t worry, those imps have been nerfed, big time.

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    While E-1 may have been a walk in the park, E-2 is a completely different story, as this is where the headaches, the suffering, and the salt, truly begin.


    I once again chose easy, but I got a bit overconfident and merely dismissed E-2 as a cakewalk, and boy was I wrong! Those Artillery Imps are quite nasty, and when they hit, they hit hard. And to make matters worse, they add the Supply Depot Princess in the last dance, and she hits a lot harder than the Artillery Imp. I chose the North-South route with one Fast Battleship, one Aviation Cruiser, one Light Cruiser, one Light Carrier, and two Destroyers, and even with the backing of a Battleship, it was still quite a pain to clear. Replacing the Fast Battleship will get you to the South-North route, but it means you would have to sacrifice some fire power, and replacing the Light Carrier with another Aviation Cruiser (still no Fast Battleship) would result to going in the  A → C → E → H → I → G → J route.

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    While E-2 could leave many admirals stressed, E-3 was a surprisingly easy affair, especially if you bring lots of drum canisters, as this Combined Fleet map requires you to deplete the TP gauge, and not really kill the boss. Well, you still need to beat the boss to damage the TP gauge, but killing her is not really required.


    For rare ship hunters, U-511 and I-401 (Iona) can be found in nodes D, F, and H, so to pass by those routes, the suggested composition would be 2 Aviation Cruisers and 4 Destroyers in the Main fleet, and 1 Light Cruiser, 2 Aviation Cruisers, and three Destroyers in the second fleet. Oh, and don’t forget to bring lots of Daihatsus and drum canisters for your Destroyers and Aviation Cruisers. For my part, I managed to kill the boss twice, but failed to do so in the Final Dance. And then I finally got Kamikaze as a clearing reward.

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    E-3 also unlocks the Land Base Aerial Support option, which lets admirals bomb several nodes with air strikes from land bases. This option would come to play in E-4, E-5, and in E-7. As for E-4, it is also a lot easier than expected, and this is because of the  Land Base Aerial Support option.


    In E-4, going with a Battleship-based Surface Task Force will let you start in Point 2, while a Carrier Task Force will have admirals start in Point 1. I went with the Carrier Task Force and cleared the map without any problems.

    E-5 was optional, so I went directly to E-6… which is the nightmare map, as those meat shields known as the Supply Depot Princess and the Airfield Princess not only hit hard, but they also diverted fire away from the boss. To make matters worse, those Artillery Imps from E-2 are also guarding the boss, and now there are TWO of them!


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    E-6 is one difficult map, but I managed to clear it before the boss debuffing was revealed, so imagine all the stress I built up for this map. Admirals are forced to go on a Carrier Task Force for this one, with admirals bringing four carriers starting at Point 1, admirals with two carriers start with Point 2, and admirals with three carriers start in Point 3. For me, I went with the Point 2 route, bringing with me two Aviation battleships (Fusou and Yamashiro for the Zuiun aircraft), Akitsumaru, two Aircraft Carriers, and one Aviation Cruiser in the main fleet. It took me about 30 tries, and in the end, my Atago managed to destroy that pesky boss known as the Central Princess.

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    To destroy the Central Princess, Aviation Battleships armed with both Zuiuns and Type-3 (Green) Shells are a must, with the secondary fleet’s Heavy Cruisers and Fast Battleship also being armed with the green shell. I also used an aerial support expedition with four Carriers and two Destroyers, and needless to say, it has dealt a lot of damage to my resources. The developers have also revealed the mechanics for debuffing the boss… which they revealed a day after I cleared the map. The Debuffing mechanics are as follows:

    • Clearing any two of the following nodes once at S Rank can result in an increase of Aerial Attack Capability against Central Princess
      • E-5- NODE I and E-6- NODE A/G/L
    • Clearing all four nodes can result in a further increase in Aerial Attack Ability against Central Princess, and doing so would also change her initial appearance voice line. (If debuffed correctly the boss will say “Masaka…” at the end of her line (but currently not on the subtitle).)
      • There is currently NO visual change in the boss.

    While E-5 is an optional map, I wanted to get that extra airfield in order to make my trip to E-7 a whole lot easier. While there is a Land Base Aerial Support option, this map is a lot harder than expected, and this is right after I finished E-6… and on East Difficulty too!


    For this map, I chose to go with two Aviation Battleships, one Akitsumaru, and three Destroyers, needless to say, it was hard, even with the land base aircraft strikes. A composition like mine would get you a longer route, with A → C → E → I → L → M, but having four Destroyers and two Aviation Cruisers can land you in the shorter A → C → G → I → L → M route. Admirals can also take on a heavier fleet, but there is a chance that they might run into a hard-hitting Aircraft Carrier Princess, and trust me, you don’t want to run into her. And after everything was said and done, I finally cleared the route and got the Italian Heavy Cruiser, Pola.

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    And now, the final map, only one boss stands between me and Iowa. I have to admit, I found E-7 to be a little bit easier than E-6, and that’s because of the air strikes mostly. But still, this is one tough map to beat, even in Easy, and even with concentrated air strikes.


    Going with a Surface Task Force will let you run the risk of running into some pesky and annoyingly accurate submarines, so a Carrier Task Force is recommended, and I actually went with that… until the last Dance that is, as the Damaged Central Princess’s final form adds a dreaded Battleship Princess and an Aircraft Carrier Princess, and not to mention a really accurate Destroyer Ancient Princess. It took me about 15 or so runs in the Last Dance with the Carrier Task Force until I gave in and went with the heavier Surface Task Force, and after just 3 tries… Kongou finally managed to rescue her fellow Engrish-speaking compatriot. ‘MURICAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

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    The map has been costly, especially to Bauxite, as the Land Base also requires them, and not just your ships. And in the end, it was all worth it. Oh, and getting an A win at the boss for E-7 is enough for Harukaze to drop.

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    So how is the event going on for you? The event has been extended until 30 May, so admirals have plenty of time to get Iowa, or farm for the other rare ships like Amagi, I-401, Mikuma, or U-511.