EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 – Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy

EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 – Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy 1 -
EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 – Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy 1 -

Table of Contents

I’ve been playing EDF and its series for past 8+ years, particularly in 4 and 5. I’ve gotten to observe many Fencer players from all over the world, and I’m here today with a guide to make it more clear (and hopefully simple) for anybody to understand that there is much more to Fencer then what is commonly discussed with him.

Having said that? This guide is not being written to discuss any of the “basic tech” of the Fencer, such as dash hopping. This topic is already covered plentifully in a guide made by Steam User “moat”, so before reading this; I highly implore you to learn the basics from >>this guide<< – []  before you try to tackle the more advanced techniques of this one. Fair warning: There is some possibility that what will be discussed here will carry on over to EDF6, but it could also be patched out / tuned by the developer. Keep that in mind.

On that note, let’s get started!

7/24 I have bit of an open schedule and not been doing much, so for next few days I’m gonna give my guide a lookover and revise somethings if I think some parts need it.

Things you should know how about Fencer already:

  1. Movement abilities like dashing and jumping
  2. What booster types are on what weapons.
  3. Chaining the dash and Jump abilities together (dash hops)
  4. At least some basic understanding of animation cancels, no there not a glitch on Fencer, but intentional on his class as devs allowed it instead of ever patching it out.

Now, I know some people say Fencer’s dash canceling isn’t a thing in EDF5 like his inception in 4.1. However, his ability to cancel animation into another animation is still around, it was just adjusted in some areas, however it opened up new options for Fencer in cancel department that was not possible in EDF4 making him more versatile than before in a lot of areas.


None of these techniques are necessary for you to learn. The basic Fencer skills will carry you enough through entire game on hard, hardest, and inferno. However; learning these techniques will make you a master of the fencer armor, allowing you to be more flexible with what you can do and will make you far more deadly. Whether you’re a Fencing scholar (beginner), Fencing Novice (intermediate), or an endgame Fencing Master (expert).

Loot and upgrading has very little importance to this guide, at least the advanced techniques. The armor gain for advance technique #4, the section of Shield Tactics, is also armor you can earn naturally by just playing the game. There isn’t a lot of armor you actually need for it. For example by end of hard mode with all 4 characters done and no grinding done, I had over 3000 armor on Fencer already in under 80 hours. I didn’t even go out of my way to pick up every drop either just what was nearby to me and drops clustered together.

Q: Why didn’t you share these tips to moat’s guide?

A: The techniques shown here are too complicated and extensive to cover for moat’s basics guide, and he would likely be confused by what it is I’m trying to convey. I’m not 100% certain YOU may understand what will be told here. Nobody else has made any attempts at discussing these, and trust me: I do get around a lot to see different opinions. I’m also not entirely sure if moat ever went into Inferno, at least I know I’ve done it myself and that I have been practicing these techniques for a good while. So I’d guess that I am, in a sense, the perfect candidate for making this guide. At least I hope so.

Q: Are you some kind of elite prick?

A: Hahaha, that’s a fair question I suppose. No, I don’t think I am. I am just a bit hot-headed, and I believe other hot-headed people such as myself are naturally drawn to the Fencer in some way. I’ve practiced, practiced, practiced, and played with numerous other fencers and they never do these techniques. I suppose advanced tech like this is not something naturally learned by any community, and would likely end up being used by players only in the top 5% – 10% or something.

Q: Did you discover these techniques yourself? If not where did you learn about them?

A: No, I haven’t created any of these techniques myself. They were all discovered by other players, however: I’ve done my best to practice with and replicate them. The players that I watch are much more obscure, not very popular, most likely due to average players not enjoying watching people put themselves through very tough content with rough conditions. Such as starting on Inferno right away on a new save file.

Q: What’s your experience with the game before I read your guide?

A: as of 7/18/2021 I solo all the inferno dlc missions with very low armor in online mode as Fencer I hope that’s good enough for you its basically as hard as the game can get unless I chose to go in with gear lacking in upgrades and also tried to do some team strats with other players although that’s probably where I might be weaker on when discussing Fencer if I have 1 big regret in EDF it’s that I didn’t get to do these as much as I would of liked to working with people but what’s done is done at this point. If you yourself happen to do some challenge runs whenever its low armor runs or speed runs with higher armor feel free to post some to me, I do like watching other players. Perhaps I can give some of my own personal critique to your run, if I can see anyway to improve it.

If your someone who is very stubborn about learning the game on your own. I won’t tell you to accept my advice necessarily… but I will say you should consider player interaction between other players(it doesn’t have to be with me), for a long time I did play EDF on my own, but I have to say it was only after I started to watch a diverse number of other people how they played the game to get as good I am today because ideas and creativity comes in easier from when multiple brains are at work.

Advanced Technique #1; {Switch Movement}: Switch Hopping & Switch Dashing

This is a hidden technique that only handful of players know how to do.

In the numerous lobbies I’ve been in, I haven’t seen anybody performing this technique or even discussing it. Which is funny, really, for it is something you can do right away even with your starting Fencer Gear right out of the gate! You can keep your shield held up to defend yourself, and still move around fairly quickly around the map to get to better positioning or collect item boxes! Best part is, it’s fairly simple. Anyone can do this technique, and always could as it has existed in game since released.

Switch Movement

– This is the act of using weapon switching to make the game register the actions of two different booster type weapons at the same time. All with a single boost button press + weapon switch at the same time. Switch Movement is just the broad term I’m giving this ability as this extends into Switch Hopping and Switch Dashing.

(Note; The two different boosters, one for the dash the other for the jump, have to be on same arm in the two separate sets to enable this action.)

Switch Hopping

– This action works as alternative to dash hopping. It follows same concept of combining dash and jump, but in this case the dash and jump weapon don’t need to be on same loadout set. This is likely to be the more used version of this technique, and it opens up a lot of loadout options on the Fencer that you might not have considered before. In my case; I like using it with Shields+any dash weapon, but few more examples double CC piercers, double CC Strikers, double arm hounds, etc. This technique can see great benefit with just single dash and jump, but just like regular dash dopping: It can also benefit if you go in with multiple dashes and jumps as it is possible to chain the technique over and over in the air.

Controls: Dash Button + Switch weapons button.

Just as a reminder, the two buttons need to be pressed at the exact same time It’s a little tight, but not that difficult to do once you start to get used to it. This is likely very easy to do on a game pad, but i’m uncertain to its difficulty on default PC controls using M&KB. For most people: Using the weapon switch on mouse wheel scroll is not recommend. I personally use custom mouse with just two extra buttons, but it isn’t necessary. I assigned the dash button to left click and weapon switch to right click, then I assigned my two attack buttons to the 2 side buttons on my mouse so this technique is entirely controlled from my mouse while keyboard is only needed for direction. Using this method, the technique became very easy for me. Just use whatever is comfortable for you.

The example shown here is done with just your starting Fencer gear.

The first one is done with no direction and 2nd is done by holding forward on W. You can also press W,A,S,D to control the direction.EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Advanced Technique #1; {Switch Movement}: Switch Hopping & Switch Dashing - 4E702C2

The example shown here is done with DLC Boosters to showcase chaining is possible, and you can do it any direction. This technique could be called Aerial Chain Switch Hopping, or “ACSH” for short. It’s arguably one of most difficult Fencer techniques to do, and even I mess it up sometimes despite being pretty good at it. In end, however, its a very worthwhile technique to master. It’ll feel tricky at first, but once you get used to switching back and forth a lot based on muscle memory: The technique becomes easier to do.

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The example shown was done with a leg exoskeleton and add jump. No dash booster was taken. Leg Exo and add jump both affect horizontal jump. This type of loadout is pretty nice to try with dual dexters, dual gatlings, dual cannonshot, dual high altitudes… you get the idea. It basically makes any dual-wielded jump-weapon setup much more viable like if you were using normal dash hop. However, you won’t be able to do any ACSH, you’re mostly doing chains from landing on ground. You’ll be slowed down or even standing still at the end of it for a second or two, so be mindful of where you end the chain using this method. This can be gotten around if you bring a Fencer weapon with movement integrated into its attack such as blast twins, force axe, quake haken, and such. There’s vibro roller too. Back on topic, however: I find movement to be pretty decent when add jump has additional speed from leg exo. Just chaining jumps alone is still pretty good on evasiveness with this setup.

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I would like to add this makes DLC2 Bombardment Exoskeleton amazing, as otherwise: This exo makes you move slower. You can go in with add booster g or multi charger, and still have benefits of using setups like dual hell flame or any other hard to aim Fencer weapons with recoil thanks to aim difficulty being almost eliminated from Fencer. Here’s a sneak peak of later technique to be discussed. EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Advanced Technique #1; {Switch Movement}: Switch Hopping & Switch Dashing - FE4E248

Finally, I wanted to end off this segment with a bonus video of a Lone Fencer vs a really huge swarm of wasps that you don’t normally fight throughout the game. I only took about 2k damage! On Inferno online against fully powered wasps, 2k really isn’t that bad for this deal. Now there’s much better ways of playing these levels, but I’m just trying to showcase an idea here. Honestly, I don’t use Cannon Shot too much for swarms like this. Despite that? It can work, but I do often use dual dexters which works wonders for stunlocking huge swarms all at once. Doing this while switching between shielding, it’s pretty tricky maneuvering but very fun to pull off against huge swarms.

Switch Dashing

This is the other side of the technique of switch movement. Much like a yang to Switch Hopping’s yin, it is done doing the reverse of having the dash weapon on the unequipped set when you try to pull off a switch hop thus making it much simpler as you always have access to it as long as you have 1 dash weapon. For this technique? It doesn’t matter at all if your currently equipped weapon is a jump weapon, zoom weapon, or has no extra function. You only need a dash on other weapon set as the jump and dash cannot be combined when jump is attempted to be done first.

Example being shown here is me using dual gatlings, and when ant decides to attack, I can dash with gatling to get out of away followed up by switch hop to put distance between me and my attackers, this is excellent maneuver to do if you like playing a more grounded Fencer or having more easy cooldown resets. This was done with Inferno speed ants, not bad dodging for a guy using no boosters.

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Final Thoughts

Switch movement might end up like a big deal, and just dash hopping alone can be questionable design on Fencer. But I don’t really see it personally as game breaking. Just an alternative way to play Fencer, Who is already just very strong to play with just normal dash hopping. Believe me. I played for a long time not knowing how to do Switch movement. It’s not giving you as big an advantage as you might think, but maybe a slight advantage is better than none at all. It makes playing without boosters very viable.

This technique has interesting perks to it like reloading while moving, or getting into relatively safe battle position when equipping non dash weapons. But you can still achieve a similar effect from just doing normal dash hopping, which is how the Fencer can put huge distance between himself and enemies to get past most issues. I just really enjoy how much more setups I can do on Fencer with this technique, like having good speed on slow builds to make loot collecting much more bearable.

Advanced Technique #2; {Gesture Dashing}

Gesture Dashing

This is another technique that is readily available to the player right away, just like technique #1. It doesn’t require boosters to make use of, whatsoever.

This technique is performed by dashing, quickly followed up with a gesture from the shortcut menu. I find this technique to be a bit easy to mess up, but how I get it more consistently is by assigning the gesture in the chat shortcut in the opposite direction of where you’re dashing. EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Advanced Technique #2; {Gesture Dashing} - 4CE4C6EAs you can see, its decent for moving around map. But it’s preferably without much, or anything, following you so you can focus on loot collecting. Being in the gesture state can leave you exposed to an attack, so be wary about when you use it. But it can be better than nothing if you’re on an incredibly slow build on a Fencer, like full shield setups, or you just don’t have access to higher boosters yet.

Extra benefits to doing this are from your resets on dash and jump ending by the time the gesture is over. So, this is an excellent way to end your dash, dash hop, or switch hop combos. I also do it when I try to revive teammates, because I find the extra distance it covers to be pretty good for covering on the ground. I would say the distance it covers is roughly about 3 dashes worth.

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For the best results for this tactic, even though it can be done with any gesture, handsign 3 is the most simple and shortest one to do.

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You can also perform weapon switch during the gesture dash to reload your other weapon set while performing the technique or getting ready to jump with jump booster, I’m not sure what to call this state, it’s not a full neutral stance since you can’t dash or jump in middle of it but weapon switching is allowed.

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Advanced Technique #3; {Teammate Shotgun Ragdoll Revival}

Teammate Shotgun Ragdoll Revival (TSRR for short)

Before anyone asks: Yes. This technique is about as entertaining as it sounds & looks.

Don’t worry, your Air Raider will enjoy the concussions from bouncing on floor more than acid and webbing that’s gonna drop him dead in next 10sec on revive. Do note that if a Raider has his vehicle next to him, don’t do this.

EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Advanced Technique #3; {Teammate Shotgun Ragdoll Revival} - 22FC15DGot a group of baddies chasing you as you go to revive your teammate? Sadly, in most cases with Air Raider / Ranger, the Fencer reviving him just gets them K.Oed again near instantly. However, if you’re able to pull this tactic off? You can safely get your teammate out of harm’s way after reviving them.

Technically, any class can do this technique as it just only requires using a shotgun type weapon but Fencer is likely to be in the position of being last alive on the team and being ready to do revives. As you’ve likely already seen, when a player is K.Oed: They’re put in a ragdoll state. A state in which their body can get sent flying due to crazy physics in the Havok Engine. You’ve probably seen examples of this already, either in your own gameplay or elsewhere. The trick to doing this technique involves this factor and, again, strict timing. You gotta shoot your ally with a shotgun first followed up by a revive from a millisecond between 1 second apart both actions doing so at same time will just kill person on revive. Since this is you attacking teammates, lag will likely interfere and make it possibly easier or more difficult. But lag is never necessary for this technique.

You can even do it while person is alive the timing to it is actually the same as when there dead, although I always felt like its morally wrong just to randomly kill your teammate so just know if you try it while person is alive let them know your gonna do this.

Any shotgun type weapon in game works, at least any weapon that shoot multiple pellets at once. A good example for Fencer which is the Dexter series of Shotguns. A dexter is a fairly popular choice, however: Don’t go expecting others to attempt a technique like this. Not many people think of trying something like this, and when they do know of it: The timing may be a bit tricky. Don’t go yelling at them to do it, or anything, either. A calm mind and a steady hand is necessary to pull this off.

Advanced Technique #4; {Unstoppable Shield Tactics}: Perfect Bait Fencer + Misc Shield uses.

Unstoppable Shield Tactics

Shields aren’t talked about much in EDF5, sadly. But that doesn’t make them weak, not at all. Those in the know say they’re incredibly strong, even against solo-online multipliers! I would even say that this next tactic that I’m about to talk about is a Fencer’s Trump Card, and what really makes him such a unique character as no other class can fill this role: Going into center of the map and acting as a stationary target that attracts a majority of enemies while your teammates clean up the hordes!

Sure, you can dash hop around and attempt to lead bugs in circles. But it can be difficult to think of your positioning on the fly, especially when some stages have ground and air units in it at the same time, and enemies won’t cluster up as well trying to chase a Fencer that is moving across vast distances in a short time. This strategy won’t care how big enemy groups can get, and it won’t care about buildings for cover. It could take ages for your enemies to KO you, and your team won’t have to care too much about friendly fire. Your Raider could drop a Tempest ATS for 500k damage on you, and you’d likely come out fine!

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Note: Don’t actually drop Tempests on Fencer, the shield will take over 100,000 damage leaving only 40,000 and Fencer will take 3k damage. Use other air raids instead.

Perfect Bait Fencer

Have you ever used the Barga and said to yourself: “Man, the armor on this thing can’t last for **** against bugs. I wish it was more tanky!” Well I have news for you: Fencer shields got you covered! While the Fencer may have less armor, the Barga itself always takes the full brunt of attacks with no damage reduction. Doesn’t help that it’s a massive target. Along with that, Fencer has access to tanking immediately with a shield! Unlike Barga, where credits need to be built up and Air Raider needs to wait for it to drop.

It doesn’t end there! He can also manually reload shields at any time! Although, in my case, I almost never need to do this on any level. I’ve found I can tank through entire levels without reloading them, but you might. Say you’re knee deep in bugs because your teammate(s) isn’t killing fast enough. Try to delay next wave by leaving some enemies up and then reloading the shield.

Note: The models of the shields are not good indicators of the diameter of its protection, such a field is invisible to the player’s eye. However, know that the perimeter of a held-up shield always covers where you aim. Even if you backdash with just one shield.

But what is a “Perfect Bait Fencer” (or PBF)?

Well first, you need satisfy one of these 2 conditions:

1. Dual Tower Shields + Deflect Cell + Shield Fortification. Shield Degrees over 360

2. Dual Great Shield +Deflect Cell+ Shield Fortification

How this works:

The heavy shield roughly covers almost half of Fencer’s body from the front when one is held up. But, if you choose to hold two shields up: It will almost cover the entire backside as well, with only a tiny gap in the back!

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Then, when you add a Shield Fortification, it adds extra degrees of defense. So tower shields can cover the entire body! Dual Great Shields won’t really need fortification, since they alone leave just 20 degrees open in your back. But it can still be useful for extra armor!

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Note: The the DLC deflect cell can reduce damage even further by 45%.

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Now, you may be asking: “Why use deflect cell over barricade system?”

Well, see: When you hold two shields up, damage is reduced by 80% on top of another 80%. With Great Shield, 90% on over 90%. You also have an additional 40% reduction from deflect cell. With all that damage reduction, you reduce nearly all damage in game to single digits! If it isn’t already just 1.

Now, barricade does 100% reduction and you won’t take any damage at all. But! The shield dies way more quickly due to you standing perfectly still, with enemies unable to knock you around. With Deflect, you can still be knocked around and it doesn’t really make shields take more damage over barri. It simply just lasts much longer.

Here’s a demonstration. In this video, you will recognize this swarm from one of our first techniques learned here. This time, I go in with double shield & don’t even bother picking up any health packs. This demonstration was done with subpar gear!

This next video showcases the shield’s full capability! As I said before, damage is essentially reduced to 1 with great shield. What this means is enemies needs to basically hit me 5000 times to knock me down! This level in particular has one of the worst swarms in the game, but with dual shield? Fencer can withstand full barrage of attacks for an entire minute and 30 seconds! All while letting enemies gather in one spot around you!

This is an unrealistic situation, however, for if I had support from teammates: You could survive anywhere 10x-30x longer. The whole point to dual shields is for your teammates to pick off what’s attacking you. The strategy itself is worthless if enemies aren’t going to get killed by anything else. There is small concern with where enemies may knock Fencer into, but its not that big of problem with deflect cell. You also don’t need to worry about teammate’s explosives with this technique, as Fencer needs no cover from anything and all damage is reduced to 1 on him. 3k Not bad.

I have to mention: Spiders and Deroys are probably the worst enemies to try this against since they deal multiple hits that add up quickly rather than focus on big damage. But this strategy can still work against them, just be sure your comrades know to target them.

Extra Note: Jumping in place may help you avoid some attacks &avoid getting stuck on terrain, making it so you last even longer. But it isn’t necessary.

Final Thoughts

This is a great Fencer tactic that can also act as a good change of pace on how to play Fencer, opting for teammates using big dps with explosives, missile launchers, etc. against a pile on of enemies in one place. It won’t be a tactic you’ll do very often, but this can certainly turn those levels that you’re stuck on into an easy sweep with good coordination between you and your allies. Be sure to keep your distance from your allies to keep aggro mostly on you, the Fencer. In opposite to Wing Diver’s Big Bang Core strategies, where the good offense makes good defense, Fencer’s is the best defense making for the best offense. Oh, and keep some movement equipment with you in your other slot to get to your desired positioning. Can’t really draw aggro while you’re behind everyone.

Misc Shield Uses

Another strategy: Using building doorways, shooting behind the wall for cover, is great with a shield and gatling for enemies can’t really see you. Good for humanoid only levels, which are all based in city maps, where you can easily find doorways to wedge into tight spaces. This is usually for early game, because rocket and mortar aliens make this tactic obsolete. You’re better off going in with Barricade + Shield fortification, which usually gets the job done anyways. This isn’t a tactic that you’ll do much of, just that it has good use in levels like this.

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This other tactic is more of a one level only deal: In the very first drone mission, using any shield, just reflect drones for an hour and you’ll get through it pretty easily.

Advanced Technique #5; {FIRE THE HUMAN CATAPULT!} (not recommended)


Now, I know my fellow soldier Gordon- (the one cleaning up the grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. for this guide) -may question my motive with this tactic since it involves using live NPC teammates as human sacrifices. But, such a gag technique does have interesting uses.

To perform you simply only need this type of loadout,

Any Light mortar+ Any Disrupter

Fire a Light Mortar to send your ally into a ragdoll state, and while they’re in midair: Fire your disrupter on them. The disrupter will work like the shotgun tactic shown before, but for longer distance with its fast and instant projectiles sending your ally into the sky where incoming enemies will give chase to them instead. Don’t worry, they can’t die until they land on floor. Ya might even get a chance to save them after they land? Maybe? Not sure.

This tactic can and will buy your group a few seconds of time. It is very much like shield strategy, except Fencer got tired of being the bait. If you’re planning on extensively abusing this strategy for more time? Then get ready to launch more than one NPC.

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(Note from Gordon regarding this technique, aimed at Vlad for putting this here:)

Advanced Technique #6; {Magician Fencer: BEND PROJECTILE}

(or just shot bending)

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Legend has it… that among the Fencer Units… one soldier, before his previous job as a construction worker, had a lucrative career as a magician. This Fencer, using the bizarre skills he had learned during his days of sleight of hand and magic hats, was capable of “using his mind” to bend the trajectory of his own projectiles.

Now, some readers might be thinking: “How in world are you doing that!? It looks so simple, but no matter what I do: It just seems impossible! How does one ‘bend’ how their shots fire?!”

Magicians aren’t really supposed to give away their tricks of their trade in “magic”. But, a world torn asunder by aliens needs a bit more magic in the world. Thus, read and be amazed viewers… to bear witness to the truth of such marvelous and magnificent skill in MAGIC PROJECTILE BENDING! (shot bending for short)

Okay, okay. Enough of that act. The magician in question quit that job forever ago, anyways. On to explaining this technique in detail!

How Shot Bending works:

Like technique #4, in the Misc Shield section where I’m hiding within a doorway and shooting around it, this technique is similar in for the way it uses cover. However, as you can no doubt tell, aiming like this is unnatural. We have discovered that, when Fencer is reloading his shield, he will keep his guns centered regardless of where your aiming. BUT! The projectile will still shoot where you’re aiming and exit from barrel end of the the weapon!

Note: We have recently discovered that it doesn’t HAVE to be a shield that’s reloading to perform this technique. Reloading any weapon in the same slot, besides the weapon you want to bend the shots of, makes this technique work. However: Shields are recommended for this technique due to their long reload times. Any other long-reload weapons work too, like gatling guns, but Tower/Great shields are always longer & shields have their own dedicated reload button. Except for Super Heavy Crusher Mortar, that takes 60 entire seconds. Shields may still do you better, though.

Requirements in simple terms

In short, all you need to do is attempt to aim and shoot a projectile weapon while reloading a shield (or other weapon). This will work with any Fencer weapon, but avoid using Fencer weapons that are explosive, pulls you in any direction, or has a special firing animation. Like Heavy Mortars, Missiles, Blast Twins, Blastholes, or any CC Striker.

Remember: If your shield (or alt. weapon) is full, you only need to reflect once and then you can manually reload your shield to trigger this state. But be aware that when your reload is over, your aim will return to normal.

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Now: This is absolutely nothing more than a sort of cheese strategy for most humanoid-only levels, or in any level where you can reduce enemies to just humanoids. Remember: Buildings are a Fencer’s best friend.

Advanced Technique #7; {Heavy Artillery: Dual Fire Reload Fix}

Now, before we get to talking about this technique in particular: Let us start off with a few examples of a problem when using dual wield heavy artillery weapons.


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Heavy Cannon

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Heavy Mortar

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Look at all three examples above back to back. Tell me, can you see a common problem across all of them from rapid firing an even clip?

If you guessed that they are not perfectly synced on reloads: You’d be right! This is a common problem when dual wielding artillery weapons: The firing rate will become uneven between the weapons, and leave you exposed to possible attack and / or lower your rate of damage.

In the midst of such a problem, the common long-range Fencer will only have two options on how to act during this problem. The first: Firing a shot from the weapon one that is reloaded while other is still reloading, but as we said: Your firing rate will become uneven the more this happens. The other is to wait for other to fully reload before firing, possibly wasting a few likely precious seconds.

But for people like us who sought better? There’s another option.

First, let’s talk about why one of the dual-wielded weapons reloads sooner than other first with no delay. You see, when a weapon empties the last shot and it has a recovery animation of any kind: The weapon doesn’t start the reload until animation is either completed or interrupted. This is clearly seen by most long range Fencer weapons, but another example could be the Fang Sniper Rifles for the Ranger. Lucky for him, though, he can cancel out of it with weapon swapping.

Rapid firing Fencer’s Cannons is the result of cancels being used to speed up long range DPS, with both weapons being fired canceling the reload delay on the other.

Now for that third option, the technique that can bypass this problem! It needs a tool that can cancel a character out of the recovery animation. But wait! You’re using two cannons! You can’t dash with them, or boost jump out! What tool could we use then?

The answer: Recall Advanced Technique #2 with the Handsign 3 gesture. That’s right, the shortest gesture in the game comes with its own animation that can be canceled into! By using this gesture the second you empty the last dual wield weapon being fired you effectively can reload both heavy weapons at the same-time to more effectively keep them in sync and ready for the next volley of burst damage!

Handcannon Gesture Cancel

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Heavy Cannon Gesture Cancel

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Heavy Mortar Gesture Cancel

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There you have it, another problem fixed means another worthy technique to add to this guide! If you’re looking to burst down anything from long range with Fencer if you bring heavy weapons, keep Handsign 3 in mind!

You might be thinking: “What about Dispersal and Light Mortar?” Sadly: It won’t do them much good. Those have very light recoil so they don’t gain anything significant from doing technique like the heavier weapons. But if you’re curious: It is only slightly worth it on Light Mortars and not at all on Dispersal. I’m betting the most notable gains would be on Muzzle Stabilizer Handcannons, since you exclusively burst fire with them. There’s no real downside to performing this technique in the end, since like we already said: The recovery animation locks you in place and the gesture is short.

Some quick tips for you:

  • If you read ahead in our guide and are using Intermediate Technique #3, you’ll have a gun firing off constantly so reload delay won’t be there on sustained damage.
  • If you’re doing this trick with Dual Cannonshot, you can always just use the jump instead of Handsign 3 to speed up your reload. Of course if you’re using dual wield zoom weapons, this won’t apply to you.
  • AT#1 cannot be used with this technique unless its cannonshot or light mortar that you bring on the 2nd set, but I’ll repeat again: this technique is best done with two zoom-weapons or dual heavy mortars.


Intermediate Techniques

After a bit of time after I started this guide, I’ve decided to add something else besides the difficult-to-master advanced tech I set out to make this guide for. Something that players may still want to know to possibly improve their capabilities with Fencer. Something else that won’t seem necessary to adding to Moat’s basics guide:

Intermediate techniques.

These will, by estimation, be at least a bit more well known than the Advanced Techniques shown before. Hopefully, they may also be a bit easier (even if their names may make them sound more complicated-) If you’re a veteran EDF player, you’ll most likely recognize at least some of these techniques as I go over them. That is to say, these probably won’t be anything new for you if you played EDF 4.1. But if you skipped that title and just went straight into 5, then hey: No judgement here. These lessons were set up specifically for players like you.

Note: Keep in mind that, for the most part, when I talk about these techniques? They can be greatly influenced by weapon upgrades or armor. Or both.

Intermediate Technique #1; {Dancing Twins Spear! Rapid Death Volley!}

Or just Rapid Death Volley



(Note from Gordon: The name, both the full version and the shortened variant by me, sounds like something an Anime Protagonist would shout out before obliterating a monster, or something. It certainly feels, and kind of looks, like unleashing an “ORAORAORA” on these aliens too.)



Requirements: Blast Twins Spear alone is enough + Dash Cell

Minimum Recommended Setups: When its reasonable to practice the technique, so likely not until you acquire hardest gear: At least Blast Twins Spear M3 on 1.9 swing speed, if not 1.9 then 1.5 would work. Along with it, the Dexter Shotgun ZA. RoF for the Dexter might not matter too much since you’re not going rapid fire with it, instead placing the shot in between jumps. Finally: Dash Cell + Add booster since you’ll use Dexter too along with this. Multi Charger can also make for an okay replacement. Especially MC 3-3, or DLC 1’s MC 4-4.

Highly Recommended Setup: Blast Twins M4/M5 on 1.9 Swing Speed + Dexter Shotgun ZG/ZGXE

Dash Cell 5/G + Add Boost 5/G / MC 3-3 or 4-4.

I hate making upgrades a requirement for a technique, but I can’t really ignore the fact that this technique requires faster swings with less frames. I can see Jackhammer + Dexter being a better choice if frames are too long, but BTS is better.

Vs online in solo play on Inferno within limits

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About 50% more time to kill just using blast twins alone from this experience

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Controls: Hold both attack buttons, and dash hop backwards. Repeat process however many times you can with the number of dash and jumps you have. This technique can’t be done in the air with switch hopping. It’s impossible because you lack the normal jump boost.

With just a Dash cell alone, you can still attack rapidly. But you’ll only be using blast twins and nothing else. I believe its slightly slower as well, but still: It can work pretty well for solo weapon use. Now with both the DC and an add Booster, It grants the user extreme levels of close range damage, while also granting the Fencer a way to move around and quickly escape areas which makes it heavily favorable among veteran Fencers.

While it is simple to just hold attack buttons when in the enemy’s face, you will of course need to decide when its best to stop attacking to adjust to a better position. Much like if you were surrounded, or if your target manages to escape. If you see a Fencer using this setup entering your lobby, then I can almost guarantee that this Fencer probably means serious business in your lobby.

Twins spear DPS is much higher than Jackhammers, and its still receiving help from dexter in between jumps. Said jumps also putting the dexter into its optimal range for maximum damage, as bullet weapons tend to drop off in damage the farther away you are. Twin spear is also capable of pushing through stunlock from attacks on Fencer, granting him even better mobility than jackhammer+dexter would.

Now: The ground of this technique with the dashes would of have existed since EDF4.1, however: It would of been much much slower since there were a higher number of frames in the attacks for the Twins Spear. On the bright side, Dash Canceling would have made this easier. However, dps would still have been much lower. In truth? It would be better if you brought two twin spears in 4.1 and used up their clips one at a time. (not shown, because this is an EDF 5 guide. Not 4.1.)

Intermediate Technique #2; Vibro Drive “Wall of Air”

Requirements: Any hammer type weapon. This includes the DLC Happy Body Pillow, Vibro Hammer, Haken, Vulcan, Finest, Roller, and Ultimate. High amounts of Armor is a requirement for this strategy since you expect to get hit, but the amount can vary depending on what you’re fighting, what type of hammer your using, and most importantly: The difficulty and limits.

Lore: Some scientific stuff about when Fencer begins swinging the weapon he releases a very strong pressurized air that coats his body in complete 360 degrees and again like shields this field is invisible to viewer’s eye but it isn’t problem at all since its always 360 degrees. The defense rating varies from each hammer type and thus shares many similarities to shields, however it lacks advantage of shield gaining mod support and shield’s ability to stack 2 defense ratings from holding 2 shields as you cannot swing both weapons at sametime.

How is it done: By swinging the hammer in any phase of its attack, light, medium, max charge.

Hammers have some of longest frames of any fencer weapons so the defense ability does pair well with it. Dual wielding can lead to you always being in defensive stat by always attacking. However there not exactly the best weapon for returning to neutral position because of long frames, you’d likely need to end off with a dash to get back to neutral as quickly as possible but this is only if you dual wield, if you do hybrid combinations you can use jump booster to get back into neutral stance instantly.

Why do it: Intention is for Fencer to hold down an area via in close range or to use defense and attack back against massive hordes, but the defense is much weaker although on bright side if Fencer is solo with no support to back him up this is viable approach to missions. However the Fencer has many tactics including speed or shields, both of which can be vastly more effective than doing dual wield version of this technique. I believe doing hybrid version with dash hops is better for lower armor runs. Also the attacks from hammers tend to be weak so its kinda safe to use it around NPC, you won’t just instantly kill them like you would if you shoot a mortar on there location unless its Vulcan explosion hit. It’s at its strongest for early game fencers while your missing equipment to do more powerful strategies. Like with shields you are also completely immune to knockdowns and grabs with 360 degree defense from any angle. You can even gain the defense while in a red ants/tadpole’s mouth to drastically lower its damage.

Vulcan/Finest/Ultimate DLC2 Mission pack is recommend for use against tadpoles however don’t expect it to be an easy fight still its gonna be tough and this will require quite a bit of armor and lucky health drops to get around. The strategy will be easy on offline and it can work in online but multipliers makes it a rough experience to the point, homing while teammates are still alive or camping with a shield under a building would be a better cost effective low armor strategy.

DLC Waifu Body Pillow/ Vibro Roller, either one of these 2 can be be used in hybrid combination with a jump weapon in attempt to lead fast hordes around like flying types. These weapons are not good for attacking but are exceptional in kiting and having defense up. Here I will also demonstrate a bit of advance technique #5, I’m not as good as my Senpai who I learned it from but I will strive to be as good as him.

Haken, can be used to hold down an area against any ground type enemies & tadpoles to some extent. Its uses its wide attack, to hold enemies down to prevent them from moving. The defense is weaker than most other hammer types so don’t use it to strictly take hits, still defense can save you from a really damaging blow while your doing the offense or waiting on dash to recover. Its recommended to dash left and right to make max charge hit cover an even wider area and also keep weapon on a uneven clip on 1 haken and other haken even to keep attacks alternating infinitely.

Final Thoughts: It’s a returning strategy from EDF4, and it is buffed technique with hybrid loadouts and being able to chain dash together without attacking to easily grab healing items without praying to lady luck that enemies would just push you into health like in EDF4 & the newly added collection ring during dash and jump is very welcoming to this technique. Despite it being buffed strategy, it is sadly inferior to most of other strategies I or basic guide have mention but it is fun to use if your looking for a different way to beat levels.

Intermediate Technique #3; Area Suppression Gunfire Hold

Requirements: Most weapons but highly recommend on autoweapons, weapons that you can just hold attack button on , high clip helps technique be easier to do. Not recommended on disrupters as disrupters is for PURE Burst damage but with HUGE limited clip.

How to do: Empty either left arm or right arm weapon until half or around half, and other full. Simply unload both weapons, you will always/almost be able to fire with Fencer like he has no downtime on his attack during a weapon’s reload.

Why do it: However your burst damage will be lower as a result and weapons will turn more in sustained damage, so this technique is very situational on usage. If Sitting/holding onto a spot like spawn camping on fast respawning spawners or inside narrow spaces like in caverns, or supporting a teammate from a distance then this technique sees great usage! If your doing hit and run and are able to move around map easily, then burst is more useful and Fencer is very good reloading while moving especially thanks to advance technique#1 or basic dashopping & a Fencer does focus on moving around maps a lot so in end you decide when this technique is most appropriate.

My favorite guns to do this technique with are hell flame, gatling, dexter shotgun, FGX, light mortar, Dispersal, Cannon shot & the handcannons. Reminder these weapons are dual wielded and with Dispersal and cannonshot since clip is low its recommended to empty entire clip of one gun while other stays full, reload and then begin emptying the other full clip while reload is going.

Intermediate Technique #4; Mortar Aerial Bombardment

Requirements: Any mortar weapon, stats don’t really mortar “haha see the joke I made there lol” except maybe damage for 1 shot potential + at least 3 jumps, higher number of jump boosts gives more room to work with this technique. Transport ships could be used stand on top of make this technique even easier and safer to do.

How to do it: Simply jump boost into air 3 times and aim below to fire your mortar on groups clustering up beneath you.

Why Do it: This is mostly recommended against ground units and is one of superior techniques in the game for fencer. It could be used for flyers but there is danger factor to a flyer flying directly in front of you getting you caught in your own blast. Each mortar has its own potency on effect.

Light Mortar: Very strong in offline mode through whole game and into dlcs, is also strong in online mode in early missions from like 1-20 on any difficulty as it can potentially one shot with enough upgrades on damage. You can see this as handcannons equivalent but an explosion its specialized heavily into rapidfire from dual wielding.

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Heavy Mortar: This series like light mortar is also very strong, the advantages to this mortar is even if low on damage upgrades it can one shot most group types and cause heavy damage on opponents like mutants since damage is very high for an explosive and AoE is biggest of all mortars on single projectile. However it comes with a zoom in order to do air bombardment you will need assistance of a jump from another weapon that has jump booster. It’s recommended to bring a fencer dash weapon with fast frames on attack like spine or blast twins to break out of heavy mortars’s huge recoil to reset you faster into neutral position to do switch hops. This weapon is like heavy cannon equivalent, it specializes in damage and is slow to fire. This mortar takes most skill to use since no jump from it but its worth learning and is reliable throughout whole game in both offline and online. It’s not recommended to dual wield heavy mortars on most occasions, but with dash hopping, there is some special cases where you can do dual wield heavy mortars. An extra thing to note is heavy mortar has fastest shot travel speed about 7x faster than dispersal & 1.7x than light mortar, so it’s also the most accurate mortar and your likely going to hit what you shoot at especially over long range.

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Super Heavy Crusher Mortar: Still variant from heavy mortar family, but this has one of biggest AoE in entire game almost rivaling tempest AT radius and have 2x AoE of great plasma cannon. So with high damage and AoE and only one shot and long absurd reload. The best use out of this mortar is to shoot when its gonna count most by rounding up huge swarm of enemies and deleting them in one go. I believe since its dlc weapon its main usage is wiping out mutants in one go, it can wipe mutants in one shot in both offline and online, however in online Silvers will eat 2 of these things. Still think about it if you shoot like 50 silvers in one shot with these thing that comes out to over 1,000,000 damage in a flash and that’s likely reason why reload is long. I can actually see this weapon having incredible amount of potential with 2 fencers 1 doing advance technique #4 and other using super heavy mortar. It is very much usable in solo, and I usually like to use it for skipping entire waves in just one go or even on red bees if I can catch them off guard from a fresh spawn. Also I love to pair this with blast twins using advance technique#1 since blast twins is very good solo weapon while mortar is reloading and I can use it cancel out of recoil. Can also be used to disable deroys easily if they walk by each other.

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Dispersal Mortar: This mortar comes with a jump and is equivalent of cannon shot series. It is said that this mortar is suppose to have intense recoil but recoil is far less than its counterpart version from EDF4 & of cannonshot. It has low clip so it specializes in launching a cluster of mini explosives all at once which can result in high burst damage with overlapping explosives, it’s very good mortar for evasive builds and complements this technique well as you can fire it and hop away right away. The weapon can devastate any weaker mobs & tougher opponents if shot in close range, however effectiveness can go down vs Mutants(Big HP mob opponents), the heavy mortar series would have more potential with AoE on its explosives for such tougher opponents but is more difficult to use than dispersal. Long range can be a problem for Dispersal mortar because it has incredibly slow shot speed that doesn’t even change from first version to last version of the weapon. It is very good vs flyers & deathqueens for being able to easily knock them away or outright kill them.

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Intermediate Technique #5; Neutral Position Reset


1. Heavy recoil absorption weapon such as heavy mortar, gallic/battle/rage, cannon shot or from CC strikers attack or CC piercers attack.

Looking for weapons with descriptions like these, the cannon description always gives me good laugh when I read it.

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Followed up by

2. Dash/Jump boosters, CC Strikers attack, CC piercers attack. These can cancel out of list 1 animations with a shorter animation.

How to do: fire heavy recoil weapon, perform one of actions from list 2, jump booster has fastest and most instant reset of the technique, so most players do this technique without even realizing specifics behind it and the other methods to doing it. Since jump boosting is very popular choice and very commonly used this is probably why this technique isn’t heavily examined. This is mentioned and lightly touched upon on moat’s guide.

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Now 2nd best method for going back into neutral is hmm depending on upgrades either spine driver/blast twins spear doing 1 attack, they have VERY fast recovery especially twin spear on 1.9 swing speed. I very much like these options for evasiveness and when I run out of jumps or don’t have jumps equipped to do what I need or if I want to perform advance technique#1.

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3rd best method is blasthole/flashing spear single attack, these weapons are slower to recover but better than option 4th.

4th best method is either dashing or waiting to absorb heavy recoil fully, dashing doesn’t sound useful here but at least your relocating and may dodge an incoming attack or make enemies have to travel some more distance before striking you.

5th method and absolute worst way to go for neutral position reset is by using CC striker attack as they have some of longest frames on attack to wait to fully recover, on bright side hammer type weapons have defense up while waiting on reset. So if you use a CC striker then the 4th best methods above might be wiser to attempt.

Why do it: So you can break from long recoil animation & attack with CC autocannons, missiles weapons, weapon switch, & use switch hops. If you use primarily the basic dash hopping, then there’s not as much benefit to learning this technique fully besides for weapon switching quickly or performing something like Intermediate technique #1. Neutral reseting is also reason why your weapons like gatling and hellflame pause during a jump boost, just think of jump boost as half a sec short animation.

Intermediate Technique #6; Shield Bearer’s Field Pierce

Requirements: Any blade weapon from CC strikers. Hell Flame from CC autocannons can also pierce, although the ability is lacking significantly until Hell flame revolver due to the range differences.

Lore: The Fencer’s blade weapons are made from Shield bearer technology as such the field it projects made into a weapon for blade’s projectile. Hell flame is able to pierce because it is a flamethrower and flamers are considered lightweight objects with no mass that can go through the screen.

Why Do it?: In offline this can be a great choice for any stages with shield bearer’s protecting priority targets like enemies or spawners such as anchors, by bringing this weapon you won’t need to focus on killing the shield bearers and can attack from long distances. Unfortunately the blade nor the flamethrower cannot hit the shield bearer itself and neither will it pierce anchors like the blade could to tunnel spawners back in EDF4.

In online mode I can only recommend using/trying this technique in 3 levels, first DLC2 Mission 4 Engage Aliens Troops 1. This level can be sort of difficult, but however it contains major weakness to long range weapons being able to pierce the field and is really the only level out of entire EDF5 missions that benefits blades greatly. You see there are humanoids within bearers’s fields there AI is scripted very special like in this stage to stand still and not leave the field until a player comes within close range. However there not only thing that changes upon getting close to field, getting close also triggers group of deroys to attack. You can take as much time as you want killing them, without ever triggering the deroys. Then when your ready to fight deroys get ready to disarm them with homing or cannons for straight killing, blades can still be used to reach every single one too, even force axe G3 can reach tallest deroy with 2nd charge.

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Now the other 2 levels can count as one really, it’s when you face off against mothership#11. You see mothership #11 also deploys a shield bearer field however like shield bearers you can’t hit blocks inside barrier, HOWEVER! The blades provided they have the range can still go through the entire field to hit any blocks that are on outside, the field won’t be able to stop your blades projectile making the blades one of easiest to use Fencer weapons against this enemy. In offline mode, well upgraded dyna force blade can 1 shot the blocks & still provide fencer mobility via dashes and cancels making it one of best options where other long range options would leave you exposed to getting heavily hit.

In online mode it’ll take 2 max charge hits however it isn’t bad choice if your in a team. You could get lucky and hit multiple blocks and the blades have a forward pull so they can dodge incoming hits while you strike. I recommended pairing with a shield and dyna blade, normally this is taboo combination but it can work really well here, I’m confident in saying this because I saw a JP Fencer 250 it on inferno using this and winning… You can make better uses of ground level speed using tall building cover, dash hopping into air while blocks are out in full force tends to leave you highly exposed to getting hit.

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Update 6/13

I’ve actually been attempting the last level in dlc2 online solo inferno with the dyna with many attempts and I have to say, I’ve changed my mind and probably have to take my own advice about blades being too weak in online mode. In the end I decided the Rage Cannon/ Battle Cannon is just much better to use for 1 shotting the blocks. Don’t get me wrong about Dyna but dyna just kills to slow in online, in offline the values aren’t doubled so its much more acceptable to use there. Anyway the cannon really isn’t that bad there if its accompanied with jump weapon and doing AT#1 with shield in other loadout & IT#5. The shield itself I find really helpful for blocking/pushing u out of way a lot of damage the lasers could of possibly inflict on you.

Intermediate Technique #7; Movement Looping (Dash Hops/Switch Hops) (WiP)

So lately I have been doing new profile playthrough 2 with my friend again for fun. I will keep this brief, the goal of our run has to be playing entire game without ever farming. I have already done up to hardest with Fencer & pretty easily despite lack of farming. I just finished playing with my friend on his Fencer run while I was playing as Ranger, and he got me thinking about few things.

1st let me state his skill level is much lower than mine, he hasn’t practice the class that much and neither does he know about a lot of techniques on this guide. So I let him go rampant with Jackhammer&Dexter with normal dash hops. Now is he best at this setup, no I’m not going to say he is, I’m sure there’s people better at it than him however he performs decently with it at times however he had some roadblocks near the end of game when it came to being front man Fencer on hardest.

He would often make this kind of exchange with me

“Can try

If my dash/boost wasn’t constantly eaten, it wouldn’t be an issue

At least in 4.1 shield dash was consistent”

Then I have to ask back to myself, hmm by eaten you mean the dash and jump boosts not working when you need them to during large horde of flying type(bees) chasing you while you use a normal dash hop set.

Interesting! I went and played the same situations and I didn’t have any issues with my movement even when I used normal dash hop or switch movement.

So that’s enough for me to talk about this next fundamental skill that’s not really talked about but neither is it hidden really as everyone has there own way around it and that is movement looping.

So what does it mean to loop? It means to repeat the same-thing without pause. You see when your fencer pauses during intense situation horde of bees with some red bees mixed in your, your in for a very bad time if you mess up the movement and stand still waiting on cool-down as flying enemies posses terrifying movement.

So what I’m saying is I have methods for getting around the loop. I won’t talking about specific cool-down timing because I think that’ll just be too confusing for people to remember.

  1. 3 ground dashes after doing last dash hop/switch hop that was done completely horizontally again some dashes are used up it would be recommended to dash hop once and touch ground to reset dashes. When your working with 6D-6A or dlc 10D-8A then missing some dashes is not really big deal and having this number of dashes be greater than boosts really helps makes it easy to loop nearly perfectly everytime without having to think real hard. If your using lower amount like 3-3 or 4-4 it can be a lot more tough working around this as you need to pay a lot more attention.
  2. 2 long spaced out dashes after doing last dash hop/switch hop that was done horizontally although it leaves you with some used up some dashes and timing is bit on longer side with this for jump recovery.
  3. 3 Vertical boosts gives your fencer enough time to stay suspended in the air to recover by the time he lands. Example was performed with 4Dashes-4Addboost. You can also do 3 non directional dash hops/switch hops instead of 3 vertical boosts if u feel need to travel some distance which I personally do quite often.EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Intermediate Technique #7; Movement Looping (Dash Hops/Switch Hops) (WiP) - C6D26D4
  4. Ending your movement combo with Non Directional Dash Hop/ Switch Hop if you spammed too many Horizontal Dash Hop/ Switch Hops in your movement combo.

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If you have some doubts about this method having enough time to reset the add boost cooldown you can feel free to watch this video it will show you it works just fine without boosters.

Q: So are you saying you need to always to do #4 to have proper cooldown reset?

A: Actually no method #3 also works it’s not only way but if you watch any sweaty bloody pro player not using blast twins then yes you will see them do #4 a lot in there video. Let me say it’s not bad at all in evasiveness compared to horizontal jump, enemies try to match your speed but your in air anyway so ground stuff can’t really hit you, things in air have a low chance to hit you depending on the size of there group. I would say the hardest enemies to try this against is tadpoles and red bees. Normal bees have mixed results but it can work on them depending on group size.

About method #3 it can vary if your fencer is starting his movement combo from top of ships, anchors, or buildings, you may not even have to any vertical or non directional dash hops if you start from somewhere high enough maybe like 200m-300m.

That’s it for looping for now, I may revisit the topic if anything springs to mind. Obviously looping methods are not as important if you use things like blast twins a lot you can go insane with horizontal movement, looping is important for loadouts not using twins spear. Master this method of movement well, and you will stand a much greater chance against even most dangerous fast enemies while showing no signs of weakness.

Extra Weapon Trivia #1

While I discuss these weapons and may offer my opinion on them, I actually don’t think there’s any truly bad Fencer weapons. I believe, weapon wise, the Fencer is the most balanced character in comparison to other classes. I like using almost all of his available guns, but I also tend to not like weapons with long charge time or weapons that are just too simple for me to use. Example of the latter being Jackhammer.

His abilities as a character, in general, is a rough topic to get into though. He has a crazy amount of options! Very likely an intentional design by the developer. After all: He is the only class in EDF labeled “advanced”, requiring new techniques to be learned for terrifying potential.

Blast Twins spear

This weapon is your bread and butter, no matter what type of Fencer player you choose to be. Besides its appealing high damage, it has extra versatility for giving fencer another way to move around. Blast twins gives your character a free minidash for a quick burst of speed, and the weapon also be used to cancel out of huge recoil attacks from such like heavy mortars fired in ground or midair.

Every Twin spears travels same distance while M3 switches order of the attack, early levels just takes slightly more frames while high level travels has less frames enabling you to enter neutral position sooner. Swing speed 1.0 on this weapon swings for around 100 frames on both light and heavy, roughly making it almost 2 seconds before you can return into neutral stance per swing. Once upgraded to max on 1.9, however, that swing speed is only about 60 frames making it just a full second before you return to neutral position per swing. By the time you reach M4 and M5 frames on that will be more like around 40 frames, it’s really fast and enables crazy damage with Dexter.

Remember: Neutral position is the stand-still state you need to be in to do things like weapon switching, or Technique #1; Switch Hopping. The only spear that can rival the blast twins in frame data is the Spine Driver. The Blasthole is quite slow to return to neutral. More on this below.

Blasthole Spear vs Spine Driver

Blasthole is a great early game weapon, while Spine Driver may seem underwhelming at first. However, going into Hardest and Inferno, the Spine Drivers turn out to be most versatile Fencer weapon in the game while Blasthole is significantly more dangerous to use against high speed foes. Even the DLC Blasthole falls short to Spine Driver.

Having said that, I’m not saying Blasthole is useless in high level play. It still works nicely with a shield setup because your character slides from dashing and attacking with spear, its good evasiveness but most cases spine driver wins out usability. Ground Crowd Control benefits from Blasthole’s ability to pierce multiple targets isn’t really a big deal either, when with Spine Driver you can just equip a Mortar, Dexter, or Homing Missiles to deal with crowds.

Like I said, for early game Fencers without much equipment unlocked: the Blasthole is readily available and is a solid option to start and play with until more things are unlocked and properly upgraded.

Dexter Shotgun series

Dexter is Fencer’s highest DPS weapon next to the Blast Twin Spear. The Dexter will edge out Blast Twins when it comes to burst damage, but for sustained damage when you press against the target for a long time? Blast Twins wins out. You can use both for a dash hopping combo and its quite a ways up there for being one of strongest combos.

Burst damage from Dexters is quite useful in a hefty portion of levels. Even then, Flame Revolver can be a much safer option for sustaining hits since it also penetrates enemies. Decisions, decisions…

Dispersal Mortar series

What’s probably the sole reason why basic Dash hopping is so strong in a lot of levels is because of how crazy this weapon is in stats, and it comes with it’s own jump booster. It’s almost a perfect choice for pretty much every level! Its only real flaw is if you try to use it from long range, but even then it’ll still do some pretty decent damage for hit and run tactics. I don’t even recognize this gun even having much recoil, but it will hurt the Fencers turn speed. But that isn’t an issue when you can just run away and put a lot of distance between you and your enemies… except for, maybe, hornets and tadpoles.

In short: You can bet this gun will be on top of dev’s adjustment list for EDF6. Or at least it aught to be.

Ion Mirror Shield

This shield was nicely buffed from 4.1. It can be used with shield fortification and barricade for very good results, especially when paired with heavy aim-shifting weapons like the Flame Revolver series due to how light it is. With Ion, you can have the benefits of shields and no need for an Arm Exo or Muzzle Stabilizers.

Every single cavern mission, including dlc missions, in EDF5 has excellent choke points for an Ion + Flame Rev combo. Not only that, But you can switch hopping with it since Flame Rev is a jump weapon. Deflect + Multi charger, Ion + Hell flame can be decent if you’re not expecting super heavy resistance to deal with.

Hell Flame Revolver

This is last version of Flame Rev series, and with this particular Rev: You can, with its 96m range, shoot through the top of transport ships from above to hit enemies beneath you! Won’t damage the ship itself by doing this, but it might be an interesting advantage. Any PT weapon can do this, however, especially with low flying ships. This tactic absolutely shreds anything you can use it against, like in M108 in online where some transports fly very low to the ground.

I want to note that this is a very powerful weapon when well upgraded. Most of the time, Dual Hell Flame is pretty overkill. Just one is pretty deadly by itself.

Heavy Mortar series/ Super Heavy Crusher Mortar

This series has the zoom ability, no jump or dashes for it to use. But, with the added benefit from switch movement’s switch hopping, you can get around and use heavy mortar like you would with Light Mortar or Dispersal. It isn’t THAT good a strategy, since dispersal mortar exists, but it can be pretty versatile with long range accurate bombardment.

Chain Gun/Gatling

I believe Moat wrote in his guide that dual wielding Chain Gun and Flame Revs is impossible to aim without a Muzzle. Well, half of this is true and other half it isn’t. Specifically: Dual Gatling only has a tiny recoil climb. In fact it never once crossed my mind that I needed recoil reduction on Dual Gatlings, the recoil climb is very slight compared to Flame Rev’s enormous recoil. I would insist taking a exoskeleton for Gatling instead, as Gatling receives much bigger gains when combined with those with faster turning speed or increased leg movement.

Galleon Rapidfire Cannon

Great long range with burst damage, but annoyingly long reload. This reload can be gotten around easily with switch movement. You know, reloading while moving? Same deal with Super Heavy Crusher or any other long reload weapon, switch movement makes reloading a much smoother operation.

Arm Hound

Arm Hound series is pretty good with a shield, I found it excellent being paired with AT#1, it really makes tadpoles easy.

Extra Weapon Trivia #2


Now the disrupter is very interesting weapon to talk about it. Many Fencers look at it differently. I’ve seen some argue why use this weapon when it has limited ammo?

So first we’ll have to talk about some of positive traits that makes it stand out compare to other autocannons.

  • I think this is most important one no fall off damage, as you know fall off damage is very important element introduced into EDF5. I won’t go into full detail here about it but it begins as soon as the weapon leaves the barrel meaning it starts dropping as soon it projectile travel begins. The disrupter has none of this which means it is top dps weapon for medium range especially if you hitting at end of its range. Ehh but lot of other Fencer weapons have no drop off such as piercers and artillery what’s special about this? Well that’s goes into my next point.
  • It’s LARGE clip automatic weapon and if you look into all autocannons the same category it comes from every single one has dropoff except the disrupters. Gatling and Galleon series would be next best autocannon for medium range while Dexter is worst for long range dps although it still great for stunlocks. Being Large clip has its advantages you can stunlock enemies easily without reloads getting in the way.
  • It is only Fencer autocannon that can be used at sametime with CC piercers such as Spine driver for really high medium range dps or the flashing spear because the weapon doesn’t stop even if interrupted by animation or you can just dual wield it but the former grants you a dash hop loadout & 1 weapon that doesn’t simply run out. Only way to stop firing disrupter is to weapon switch with it.

How does it scale in offline? They gave you way too much ammo in offline especially if yours is almost maxed out in upgrades.

How about online? It still excellent in online, however this is where you can easily push the weapon to its limits, you will run out of ammo with it in online especially if you use it alone a lot, but IMO you can mix match the damage when using something powerful like blast twins for close range to conserve the ammo and then using disrupters on retreating, you have 4 weapons after all, there’s lot of flexibility with the weapon on close quarter maps. I typically like using it to kill spawners, bosses, headshotting humanoids such as frogs or cosmonauts. Yes it its easy to go for headshots with this weapon.

Feel free to watch this video for a demonstration of the idea

Anyway to get the most out of this weapon you will need to pre-plan and know the stage your playing ahead of time, I would probably advise not using this if your unfamiliar with the stage your going to play.

Q: Is it perfect for every level?

A: No

Q: Is it good on a lot of the levels at least?

A: Yes, except if the level is very heavy on crowd control that comes from waves and not spawners like ships or teleporters, like tons of tons of bugs to fight then homing missiles, mortars or hell flame is more useful. I think you can make it work on any level really if you playing with a teammate, depending on your role if your going to be one who takes out priority targets.

Force Blades

Force Blades are very good in offline and remains effective through whole game into the dlcs up to last levels. They possess one hit potential on many targets with even greater range than the spine driver with wide hitbox making them easy to use to demolish crowds of enemies. In this context you can think of them as the Launcher category as most launchers are also very effective in offline. Know those guys who like to spam dispersal or cannonshot at bees in online, guess what in offline force axe G3 with its fast attack speed and its almost 400 meters can easily cleave through such a group without annoyance of long reload times, I remember how awesome it felt in offline when I first got force axe G2 and I was wiping through crowds easily with it.

There also pretty good in caves because they can bounce off of walls to hit targets indirectly without being in there lines of sites which is great in those very narrow halls.

In online the effectiveness dramatically drops because it loses its 1 hit potential like launchers do and ends up being 2-3 hits to kill an ant/spider or bee. Now there not unusable in online just means they take longer to kill with and are nowhere near as OP in offline, taking longer to kill something can be a hazard especially if one goes without a shield but its not bad if you have some purple frog coming at you and you can easily knock it out of it’s flight and onto the ground

So I’ll explain each type

Force Blade – Fast attack speed, medium range, medium charge time, widest hitbox.

Force Axe- Fastest attack speed, medium range, fast charge time, wide hitbox.

Dyna blade- Fast attack speed, extremely long range, slow charge time wide hitbox.

I’m not sad that there nowhere near as effective in as they were in offline but that’s just called shifting the meta in online mode. Perhaps the devs forsaw that people would play through both offline and online, so in order to keep things fresh they have different meta defining weapons between the two modes to keep things feeling interesting and not the exact same. However you get some Fencers playing only the online mode and they think the category is unbalanced when its not, just isn’t intended for online mode as a general weapon is all.

The force axe g3 exclusively comes with a dash like attack that can make traveling similar to blast twins so it can be good for movement purpose and looping.

Now see let’s talk about what if… and the what if is, what if blades possessed CC piercer/artillery damage values, like 6k per hit like with force axe, or dyna possessing on its long range hit 15,000 like battle cannon is. See you have an issue now, where you would use CC strikers exclusively and never give CC piercers or artillery any attention when you go to play online at that point. Quite funny to imagine that right? Same deal with shotguns, if all launchers were excessively strong, you would use them all time as a sniper, crowd control, and maybe even for boss/elites because. Now are all launchers weak? No, some are strong but ones that are strong have slow RoF and can’t be spammed to death. You would never bother trying to use assault rifles, snipers, or mighty shotguns if launchers were buffed for online.

For anyone curious, if your someone who only played online mode, I highly suggest to you to try offline if you desperately want a different experience with the game. Offline will give it to you, it will give you new meta defining weapons and even more gameplay time. Actual sad truth for you online only players is you only experience half of EDF5, even if you have that shiny 100% next to your name in online. Yes its only half, and no stop letting achievements dictate what fun is in your game. I didn’t need achievements to make my games fun back in 90s and 2000s. Its fine to use them lead the way of how you play through the game but you don’t have to let them be end for your game, you can keep playing the game, because you just really enjoy EDF for what it is, a fun video game, alone or with friends, and btw any game can technically be fun with friends.

Further Q&A #1

I don’t consider these full fledged techniques, but perhaps some ideas to possible problems. Also you don’t need to read this section of the guide necessarily but if you have question do consider looking through the questions to see if I’ve already answer what you may have wanted to ask, if question isn’t present, then present one to me on comment section down at the bottom.

Q: Help! I’m trying Advance Technique #4, my health is getting low, and I see nice shiny health pack nearby! But I feel so immobile since I have to weapon switch while standing still! Is there any safe solutions around this while there’s still a few enemies in this wave I’m in?

A: No worries! So, doing advance technique #4 makes advance technique #1… pretty much impossible to do. So you’ll need to rely heavily on normal dash hopping to get around, preferably using Blast Twins. However, do try to remember there is switch dashing. That can still be done even while holding up the shields. Really, I get that you may feel tempted to try and grab health packs. But this is the type of strategy that shouldn’t rely too heavily on that. Not unless you’re some kind of crazy nutjob that’s trying to do this with much less armor than I suggested, or you’re being pushed dangerously close to your team. With switch dashing, you can also switch dash into switching back to the shield. Just know there’s big risk and a bit of RNG at play when you’re surrounded by so many attacks.

Mobile Nuclear Bomb Shelter Fencer

EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 - Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy - Further Q&A #1 - 026A9D7.

Q: Is Advance Technique #4 possible to do on hard and below?

A: Not quite. Within limits and drops on Hard, it is not possible to get / use a Tower Shield that will cover 360 degrees until level 57 Tower Shield and Shield fortification. That’s why that strategy is exclusive to Hardest and Inferno. However, in DLC missions, I believe it is available on hard mode there. Then again, I don’t see too much reason to do it on on hard since the enemies aren’t dangerous enough for such a tactic..

Q: When it comes to doing advance technique #4, PBF, what kind of support is acceptable for Fencer?

A: That’s where the strength of the strategy lies: Your team and its AoE options that they’re using. It is best used in coop, after all! Good examples would be…

Ranger: Missile Launchers like Emerald or MLRA with lock on support item. Stampede could be decent, strong Rocket Launchers would like Goliath would do nicely, Grenades like DNG could work as well. You can bring a Reverse Shooter for extra insurance on NPC survival, or the Fencers. However, that shouldn’t be necessary with this type of strategy. In fact, it might be a liability. The Reverse Shooter has a knockback effect, like an explosive that deals no damage, that sends enemies flying. It could be risky, likely blowing enemies away from Fencer.

If a stage happens to have anchors on it, consider that strong long range will be necessary to bring. Maybe EMC, Railgun, or Brute for their guns will be good to bring. Maybe as a bit of a joke you could try strapping Bombs onto the Fencer, letting the huge radius from them wipe out your enemies. However, it’ll likely have to be used one or two times. Thus, I recommend against it as it doesn’t offer a long range option.

Wing Diver: First thing that comes to my mind right away is the Plasma Great Launcher. Even that Lv15 version can be pretty good, even late stage. Low damage but big blasts can clear out hordes of enemies rather well! Other decent options could be plasmafall, and maybe homing mirage. Ghost Chaser is very good, but in this case I don’t think you’d actually want to push enemies around everywhere. You could try to Fly up to fencer to throw a Gleipnir, but I don’t think that’s really worth the risk of going so close to Fencer. Oh, quick tip: You shouldn’t need to bring the big bang core for this kind of strategy, or any others like it. Most cores will work.

Air Raider: Any airstrike! Hahah! …But avoid extremely high damage ones like Artillery Teams Cannons (D or ZD), or a Tempest (AT or ATS) unless the swarm is silver spiders. Lower level, weaker Tempests could be fine though. Phobos, KM6, or Vesta could be good in this situation. Any Spritefall will work, definitely. As for vehicles, just pick something with decent long weapons and you’ll be fine.

Fencer: I think the best weapon from another Fencer is a Heavy Mortar series in this case, especially if you jump high into the air and fire it from there. What’s good about it is you can launch it from far away, and the projectile can be incredibly fast and accurate. You COULD try Dispersal, but it will likely spread its shots away from the crowd and miss. But it could still work. Any Homing Launcher from Fencer will work too with this strategy. I don’t recommend Light Mortar for this case, though. Might be too weak and just push stuff around, and it has too short a blast radius for it to be useful.

Having said that, feel free to really just try whatever. I haven’t seen every gun being used in this strategy or anything, but I know most of these will work if used correctly. Just take what you feel is most effective.

Q: On advance technique #1, is what you listed the only the setups that can be done with it?

A: No, of course not. Due to steam’s character length, I couldn’t make a full list. You can also do hybrid combinations of CC Piercers and Zoom weapons, like Heavy Mortar (a really good one) and Cannon series. There’s also Arcane Missile Launcher which you can switch hop with now, although I still think Arm Hound and FGX missiles are still better than Arcane. Mix and match, go with the flow, and experiment for yourself if you’d like. Technique #1 is best used to freely use shields while being able to move quickly a bit more comfortably, but it can free up plenty of other options too.

Further Q&A #2

Q: Thanks for the technique, and all, but why would I ever use shields when I can just be fast and evade everything?

A: Ahh… this question… I always find this question in the great debate in plenty of other games that talks about offense vs defense…

Here. Let’s not talk about EDF for a second, but instead about… just any games in general. You need to be on the offensive to beat most games, clearly. Lots of players are addicted to things like high attack numbers, and speeding through content. You don’t need to play through whole games to understand this, I believe this is just a general norm mindset. So most of the time, they just forgo any defense aspect in games and is why defense strats are never popularized.

It is true, though, defense alone will never truly beat an entire game for you. But I believe some of the best strategies can be learned from defensive play. A lot of the time, the devs don’t force a harsh enough environment to make you consider defense. But I for one am glad its there as a choice, not something that is forced on the player to add variety to the game. I am glad that I can use my own mind to discover different ways to play, instead of the repeated interactions that boil down to:

“Hey, how did you beat this level?”

“Oh I just sped through and killed everything quickly.”

Back to EDF5… First off? What you said isn’t entirely true. You can’t “evade everything”. You still get hit during such a strategy. EVERYONE still gets hit from stray shots, even players like me who played for literal years. Even an insanely high skill JP player, and their 250,000 or so runs that may have included anywhere from 1-100,000 retries each, still gets hit even in some of their best products! You don’t get out of your battles unscathed. Most of the time, a Fencer who says they didn’t take any damage just used Blast Twins to escape from the minor stun of getting damaged and didn’t notice.

But even so; Let’s say you can avoid about 90% of things in this game, and it isn’t until a few levels here and there where the game gets serious enough where Fencer does face some risk of being hitstunned and promptly melted even with his top speed. For those missions, think of it like this:

The shield isn’t just about damage reduction, it offers the Fencer 100% anti stun and a pushback that helps in evasion while still letting the Fencer focus on returning fire to the enemy. Ranger has some equivalents that reduce hitstun, like the Liquid Armor, Under Assist, and vehicles. But here are the catches: Liquid Armors only reduce hitstun by 50% most of the time, Under Assists only lowers hitstun while sprinting so you can’t attack while having anti-stun, and vehicles? Vehicles lack the precision to do complex high evasive movements, but at least it lets you have perfect anti-stun and can attack. It’s a constant trade off for him for such a buff.

The Wing Diver, on the other hand, has no way to reduce damage whatsoever! So you can see why the Wing Divers utter “SPEED IS LIFE” in 4.1, and Fencers never making such a statement themselves! well then, again its not like NPC Fencers even know how to dash hop–

As for Air Raiders? He can use vehicles, but it’s the same problem as Ranger! Raider’s vehicles have much better movement than Ranger’s most of the time, but still: It can end up being too stiff in comparison to just being on foot in some scenarios!

In the end? The Fencer can have it all: Speed, Damage, High Defense with Anti-Stun! You just gotta make good use of ’em, and Switch Hopping is for that very purpose.

Like we said, too: Switch Hopping is best used with a shield. A held up shield can be a nice addition to waiting on your jump recovery at end of chains, instead of just doing do the 3 dashes then jumping away. Just remember: When a Fencer picks up a shield, he does not pick it up to simply protect himself. He hoists it to defend his allies, who otherwise lacks the means of defending themselves from damage.

That’s what it means to be a defender who takes up the shield! Always’s remember the brave words of the Grim Reaper unit: “We are prepared to die, just use us as your cover!” Are you the type of man who’s willing to say the same back to them? Or are you going to dash hop into some corner of the map and willingly let your team die, human player and NPC alike, just so you can say “heh!! i carried everyone!! lol!!! Ya should of picked the fencer class yourselves SUCKERZ!” in a team based game on PvE?

I’m not telling you to use the shield in every single mission…

But hey, maybe every once in a while? Consider giving it a try when you really want to feel the strength of your whole team working in unison, instead of four individuals who just doing hit and runs to slowly kill everything. No individual DPS will be greater than a constant stream of max potential AoE DPS.

Or, in the end: You can do it for the satisfaction of just keeping your allies alive until you get an opening. Even if there are just NPCs with you while playing solo (or online coop solo).

And that’s that… I don’t feel like I’ve got anything else that really needs to be said about shields. If you still don’t want to use them, it’s your choice. ^^

That’s the beauty of this game, really… hell. That’s the beauty of any game, really. The individual experience that everyone has with it. Whether it be blasting around at mach 2, or standing proud like a wall for your allies. Even if you disagree with someone’s loadout at times, everyone should at least TRY to respect each other’s choices in a team game. (unless you need a long range sniper to destroy a transport ship hundreds of feet in the sky, for example. If it’s something that actively hinders the team, then MAYBE feel free to mock each other on who is bringing the stupid loadout.)

Further Q&A #3

Q: So. If I, say, play with only Fencers across however many players we have: Would you recommend they all use shields?

A: No. At best, you really only need one person on the team using shields. It’s a specialized role for the team, and having 2 people using shields would just be excessive. At best, use 1 shield and allow the other Fencers to go for full offense. Though, that’s just my thought. If you want everyone to use Shields, go right ahead. Despite this guide and some of its contents, I don’t actually enjoy telling anyone how to play the game. Play how you want to play, I’m just offering you techniques that could change things up.

Q: What’s your favorite fencer combination?

A:This question really sucks for me because I don’t have a favorite combination. I did in 4.1 & it was dual Vulcan Hammer, but in 5 multiple stuff is useful in multiple missions, I don’t stick with just one loadout even though I could. I’ll try to be fair to this question and answer it I suppose…

I think the weapon that’s probably given me the most fun factor is I would say dual hell flame but I’m gonna go with dual Gatling. I have to admit, dual gatling has really surprised me in both 4.1 and 5, I know it isn’t most damaging fencer weapon but it’s got very good overall balance of range and damage, and big huge clip, and I’ve gotten through some really difficult moments in missions thanks to it where I wasn’t sure if it would work or not. It’s pretty much good on any enemy really. I have to admit when I first saw fencer trailers with dev using gatling, it didn’t look that appealing of gameplay to me at the time but overtime as I used the weapon myself, it’s become very addicting and I’ve started to see the appeal of just unloading a big huge clip gun with range like gatling & in the end I think the devs chose a fine weapon to showcase with.

Having said that it really does make you wonder why they don’t arm the NPC fencer themselves with gatlings, maybe the gun really does cost a trillion dollars/yen idk currency EDF uses lol and its too expensive to give to multiple EDF soldiers. Believe me the EDF needs all its funding for there very expensive EMCs. Jokes aside there’s bunch of guns, the Fencer NPC don’t use that the player can, I’m sure it comes down to gameplay balancing of the sort.

Q: What do you like more dashing or jumping or the supreme dash hops/switch hops?

A: I do for sure believe dash hops/switch hops is strongest of these 3 things, however I do enjoy just doing dashes and jumps depending on situation and equipment I take. Jump boost only + leg exo is very viable to do and dashing with the shied + CC piercer, or CC striker is also good. But thing is I’m almost never exclusive to just one of these things, I mix them all together in one mission depending on context. Funny thing is I find add booster to be most worthwhile booster on his list and I would think most would agree on this, but devs list all dash cells as higher level equipment than jump, perhaps did they see multiple dashes being more stronger or something?

However dash cells does make things like blast twins much stronger when you can dash backwards 10x you can dash 10x backwards hit rapidly with blast twins 10x on a foe otherwise without dash cell the blast twins is a lot harder to aim and hit with quickly.

Multi Charger is a lot more interesting to use with technique #1, I think its kinda bland with regular dash hopping but it can still work with normal dash hopping. I always goes for multi charger with more jumps, again just like normal jumps, 2-3, 3-4, are always lower level than the higher dash versions of these, and again I think devs really think dashes are more valuable than jumps for some reason.

Multiples dashes is also what allows you change directions quickly and with fast consistent distance, changing directions using the dashes is what makes the dash interval part of it. worthwhile. Overall the dash is considered worthwhile because it is highly evasive part of fencer’s kit and its probably best ground evasive move out of all 4 characters options. Ranger’s roll isn’t as fast, Wing Divers dash is either too short or too long on turbo core. With multiple dashes you can adjust length of dash by spamming in a straight line. Ahh but remember wing diver isn’t restricted to number of dashes in air like fencer is and when in your in the air your “ALWAYS MOVING” unless your chilling in a helicopter. This is why Wing Diver is more evasive character, she has ton of air time with cheap energy weapons and she has a lot of great cheap energy options that hit hard.

You can also attack out of dash using any weapon that uses full body recoil animation like CC piercers, strikers, or Artillery, or arm hound from his missile launchers. Most missile launchers & all CC autocannons can’t be used to during the dash however when combined with jump you can use any weapon to attack during evasion phase. Wing Diver can attack around same time in her dash with lances and launchers. Ranger has the worst deal on his roll, he has to wait for himself to fully recover out of roll to attack.

Further Q&A #4

Q: In your opinion who do you think is strongest character in EDF?

A: I’ve said Wing Diver a couple of times especially with Bird Core, Jet Core, Mighty core, or Big Bang core before I learned most of these techniques but honestly I keep bouncing back and forth between Wing Diver and Fencer. Wing Diver doesn’t have as many viable tools to beat levels, but she has some of most lethal stuff in her kit and she is very easy to use. I played a bee+drone level on inferno solo with her and beat the level in literally one try.

I tried same level with fencer and it took me like 8 tries before I got through it with him you know trying to dodge. Dodging with her is incredibly easy and effortless I know people will make some argument about her movement and attack eating into each other but overheating only happens if your super greedy with attacking, otherwise the lances get very cheap cost and you can spam them almost forever in air, and her rapier/Phalanx can instantly kill spawners/bosses before there even a threat even in MP mode but even if you don’t bring those again the lances can kill thoses too.

Even if you do overheat there smart ways to recover most of your energy while dropping high from air or just landing somewhere with lot of cover surrounding you. Believe me its very good to plan out overheating because you recover energy 2x faster.

Not only that but her Big Bang Core strats doesn’t even necessarly need a team to beat levels she can handle stages solo with it with Gleipnir and Stardust.

Her DLC2 sniper Raijin Limit is also one of most easy to use & aim high damage snipers rifles in game and it’s versatile, just make sure to plan your overheating with cover surrounding you. 10 shots, S++ accuracy, 10k damage per shot, okay slightly long reload but my goodness I may never see another sniper in EDF as ridiculous as this one ever again. Shoots through shield bearer’s field, poor ranger has to run up to dangerous enemies because he has no way to deal damage through shield bearer’s from outside.

Still Fencer a crazy amount of options to his approach, so I don’t like writing him off as 2nd, so I’m just gonna say it’s a tie between him and Wing Diver. Why do I say this, I feel like one or other handles certain stages better and worse but they can beat every stage by themselves.

But honestly who cares who is the strongest. This is CO-OP game, not a competition between ourselves even though I get that can be fun to for some people. The goal is not to showoff your character, but figure out how your character can cover the weaknesses of other characters.

Q: Can you make any best guesses on why infinite dash canceling from EDF4 was removed in EDF5?

A: I’m not the developer nor have I seen the developer make any claims why but I’ll try to make a logical guess. Reason why infinite dash cancels is gone IMO is because of how fencer has collection ring during dashing and jumping but the ring in particular is OP on collecting health and such during dash since dash covers ground speed. Also the shield durability buff might have also huge hand in nerfing it since shields can have ludicrous amounts of health with shield fortification and thus something like reflector which has fast reflecting could of have been used to spam as much catapult was with its 300+ shots.

Plus at end of day seeing kind of changes they made at wing diver and air raider, those classes also play a hell of lot different from EDF4 versions so it could of been Sandlot just wanted to give character’s a fresh feel in 5. Suppose Ranger had some changes as well, so taking him into account it’s possible there goal is to kill off any effective tactics the last EDF had going into next game. After all I imagine as dev at least a serious developer wanting to stay in business you wouldn’t just create the exact same kind of game with just slight tweaks despite borrowing a ton of assets/mission designs from previous game.

Anyway the Fencer is plenty crazy in this game, I strongly feel like 5 fencer is easily one of strongest characters ever to date including in any EDF style game along with Wing Diver.

Q: What are you basing your techniques category on?

A: I base them on these 2 things

1. Likelyhood of a player discovering them on there own.

2. There difficulty to do successfully & repeatedly without fail.

Suppose I could base them on effectiveness as well, but that’s complicated thing to go on because I’m not sure in theory how the top top fencer player who does all these things would look like, I still think the original basic techniques shown a lot when game came out are also very strong and the existence of these techniques won’t really invalidate them.

Although reason number 1 probably plays the most factor on why I decided them the way I did. I think anyone who reads this guide will likely have there own opinions and that’s fine, I want you all to understand this guide is just my perspective, if you think something from intermediate should of been advance then please by all means feel free to see as such.

Q: If I’m able to do all these techniques successful would consider you me an expert?

A: I wouldn’t be harsh and tell you have to get them 100%, but if you can do them 90% of the time then yes I’d gladly recognize you as a Master Fencer with utmost respect whenever I hate you or like you wouldn’t matter either, I recognize true hardship and skill when it deserves to be recognized otherwise I wouldn’t forgive myself as someone who’s spent a long time playing as Fencer. I’m not saying I can do this 90% of time myself, but the players I watched did do them with some pretty high accuracy most of time, if I had to judge myself I’d say I can do them somewhere from 50%-70% of the time. I still need to practice on some of these techniques myself so that someday I can maybe reach 90% myself, so no I wouldn’t consider myself a Master… but maybe someday.

Q: Time for real important question of all are you a ketchup or soy person?

A: Society used to feed me with ketchup a lot as a child but after all these years I can confidently say I’m a soy person after I’m able to make my own decisions as an adult.

Further Q&A #5

Q: What about homing weapons got any fancy tricks with those? Also what’s difference between Phoenix, Haytal, and Leviathan?

A: Homing weapons is very straightforward to use just lock and fire away there nothing complicated about them the basic guide will cover what you need to know about them, and the dangers of using something like FGX while jumping.

As for the other things, those are co-op missiles that requires air raiders beacon or laser, Phoenix and Haytal are fast missiles but they can work I would recommend them on fast moving enemies that have high health like red drones or purple tadpoles using High/Power Beacon. Of course use them dual wield too there not really worth using alone with just single. Leviathan act’s like air raider’s tempest in fact its big explosion and slow missile to travel, it’s much better when you can get the drop on enemies, if enemies are already moving around or heading near your location then the weapon loses a lot of it’s surprise attacks and also I suggest the Laser Kit being used with this since lock on is very long.

Technically with air raider bringing a barrier for protection and fastest laser kit you got, leviathan can be very good for wiping out big groups of aliens or frogs easily since the attack comes in pairs to bypass the protection of there armor and problem with using beacon on aliens is if armor is destroyed then the beacon falls off while with laser that won’t happen.

Q: Is AT#1 Switch hopping as fast as basic dash hopping? Youtubers like KevinEDF did a speed test that shows Fencer travels across entire map in the city map in 19 seconds at top speed.

A: Kevin also used blast twins M5 in that test. But to answer your question yes, it actually is exactly as fast as basic dash hopping. However when you throw blast twins into the mix basic dash hopping will have an edge of 1-3 seconds faster. Meaning those 19 seconds across becomes like 22 seconds across map with switch hop method using blast twins. The thing about blast twins is all the momentum buildup from dash to jump to blast twins, switch hopping kind of interrupts part between jump to blast twins so not as much momentum is going on. Still without blast twins the speed is same between the two.

Q: I see on the forums some fencers says shields are bad or some kind of negative comment about them, what’s your take on them?

A: Honestly just ignore them I’d say they most likely don’t even know half of things on this guide and that’s me being kind & probably giving them more credit than they really deserve. There’s no real reason to give them any attention especially if they do know the content of this guide and are still silly enough to say things like that.

Let me just say this don’t let someone else decide for you what’s good and bad, if you yourself decide to say shields are bad because of your experience, then I’m happy you at least gave it a try, after all this guide isn’t even entirely about shields but small portion of it. If you say there bad because someone told you there bad I’m very disappointed in you, the game balance does not revolve around a single player opinion and you shouldn’t even take my opinions as 100% fact either.

Anyway I welcome anyone to my guide to learn, remember its never too late to stop being a dummy. Yet maybe its just a fool’s dream to try and appease everyone. Let me tell you its not easy going on here and writing a guide labeled advance fencer, its very daunting task, every single person who would come onto this guide would have to assume I’m an expert, that I can’t be wrong, so I have to live up that expectation and make sure I’m mostly correct, still I’m only human and I’m not gonna say every single this said on this guide was said correctly but I want you to really know I did try my best I did not half assed the guide, I gave my honest opinions, backed by months of experience with a lot of techniques discussed here.

Honestly I’m more of in the boat of just use whatever your RNG drops gave and best upgraded on it’s like how the dev even setup the game. If they wanted you to just use powerful gear by default they would of just given it to you from start of the game but no the system is meant to be random experience for each player unless you heavily farm. If they thought shields were pointless they wouldn’t have even put it in the game let alone write about them being powerful equipment in tips during loading screen.

Also I myself have done quite a few dlc missions in online with just 250 armor and a shield, the notion that the shield is always just there in this game to take damage is false, it has a purpose it lets you do close range combat safely against humanoids especially when there in large groups and it has support equipment lets you take different approaches with it. You too can also take 0 or very little 1-200 damage with shield if you really wanted to focus on that.

I’m guessing when a “Fencer said’s oh in those levels with all large group of humanoids you can just take a long range weapon and pick them off.” Yes this is true you can just do that after all enemies lack range to hit you, but again that’s not the point by doing that your allowing enemies to assault the NPC group or your other teammates. When you have shield you don’t have to focus heavily into relocating all the time you can have the enemies focus on you primarily meaning the damage is focused away from NPC. Again with Jackhammer & Dexter that only works flawlessly in 1v1 situations, try to do that in front of a group of humanoids, what might happen, you kill 1 but others quickly unload on you and you take damage, I’ve seen every single Fencer who uses this loadout take damage, it really doesn’t help the Fencers case that he lacks the ability to do any cancels to help with movement with such a loadout.

I don’t get why some Fencers make a big deal about mastering basic dash hopping, I mean is that hard, no it isn’t?

1. Use highest dash/jump boosters.

2. Figure out how to loop it at the end of its chain.

3. Use Blast Twins to cheat out of learning step 2 or for extra momentum for more speed.

4. If drones are in stage go super fast lead them into buildings slow them down & to avoid all attacks.

Simple stuff, honestly I don’t want to hate on speed fencers because I think that gameplay is fun too and I’ve seen pure speed and shield fencers work together to beat missions. But when such Fencers make such comments you make it really hard for me to like your kind. Lucky for you negative opinion fencers I do know that some speed Fencers know the real truth about shields, & because of people like them I can at end of day smile.

Q: Do you believe your guide has had any huge effect on the community?

A: Tbh I still play EDF5 with randoms and let me tell you, even after sometime this guide was published nothing has really change, I still haven’t seen any fencer doing any tech. So as of right now no this guide hasn’t changed anything at least to a big effect. To be fair I have only published the information on here in Steam. I intend to keep it that way, if you yourself want to write about some of information here on some other site your welcome to do so its not like I own the rights to these techniques or anything, I shared them I got tired of watching people play Fencer with such high armor, my hope was by sharing this techniques people could see far less of reason to grind to insane amounts of armor as Fencer or at least find new ways to have fun with the class.

Further Q&A #6

Q: Shields just hand you free wins?

A: In offline sure but offline isn’t really hard to begin with a lot of weapons can hand you “FREE WINS”.

In online a shield doesn’t offer you free wins at all you have do some moving around being aware of your surroundings. Take it from someone who extensively tested in online solo and watched numerous other JP players using it. Not every JP player is a top level skilled player but I recognize they by far have the biggest group of skilled players who fully understands the developers work on game’s balance and I’m only believing this MORE AND MORE each time I see moronic comments on forums being made. I was barely scraping by on durability on my runs, I would say the shield is perfectly tuned for online mode especially when they can get me to consider reloading them a few times throughout the levels for normal shield use.

If you truly truly believe you get free wins with the shield, trying doing same online levels I did in my runs where I used the shield, and see if you just get a free win. You shouldn’t even need to see my full videos, just go in equip the shield and mods and then win first try. It should be that simple right? But if you need to move around, think about what your doing then at that point I wouldn’t call it a free win.

Q: Since you like to talk about shields so damn much care to name a few favorite shield load-outs?

A: Sure I’ll start with first one

  • Tower/Great shield+Spine – Easy to kill humanoids loadout especially when paired with shield mods, I just go straight for headshots, headshots = extra damage. The loadout only gets better in dlc with armored frogs as they have extremely weak head armor.
  • Tower/Great Shield+ Dexter – Dexter is classified as slightly heavy weapon but aim penalty is very light so it can work well even when paired with heavy shield and dexter is pretty strong by itself. I’ve used this couple of times with AT#1 in my challenge runs and it did prove to be pretty good and the fear vs flyers lessen a lot.
  • Ion Shield + Hell flame – This is good for holding down narrow tunnels with at least 1 shield mod.
  • Tower/Great + Arm Hound/Rapid Hound – Makes any flyer group into a joke pair with dash cell and add jump, use with AT#1 although not necessary as dashing alone is good but to have it with dash hop technique makes using this loadout even safer.
  • Tower/Great + Gallic/Battle/Rage Cannon – Know those Fencer NPC that use shield+ handcannons, yeah I used to make fun of those guys myself all the damn time because I was going wow you guys have absolutely 0 mobility. See this type of loadout is actually insanely good, what people tend to forget about shields is the shield can be used at sametime as firing a heavy weapon which doesn’t possess true dual fire, + cannon is insanely strong by itself. Guess what your not an NPC Fencer, you have ability to bring 2 weapon sets so first set is a normal dash hop set for me when in use with this. I greatly enjoyed pairing this with AT#1 on switch dashing, I’ll do some dash hops into air then switch to shield+cannon then hold shield up & fire then upon landing on ground I’ll switch dash into my dash hop loadout, this proves to be insanely good maneuvering for dealing with last dlc level that has block of lasers where firing such weapons leaves you insanely exposed.

    Of course you can also go full shield setups for humanoid or red drone levels, again you can still switch dash. I said switch dashing would be more underused technique but it actually makes using this set feel really good.

There’s more shield sets I could share but these were ones that helped me out the most.

Q: What about other shields you didn’t mention?

A: They are usable but the thing is I never had any serious trouble using heavy shield even with its aim penalty, and if I use a shield I want the full benefits of it which is the degrees. See the aim penalty doesn’t happen until you are holding the shield up, also fact that you can aim with lighter weapons on other set if aiming is difficult. All I’m saying is there suppose to be cons to using heavy shield, but there’s workarounds on them and thus cons don’t really end up being harsh enough for me to consider not using them.

Q: Since you solo all dlc with low armor how do you feel about it?

A: idk uhh good, I didn’t actually think I was gonna be able to do it but uhh here I am. It feels a bit weird. I thought I handled it pretty well and I gave it my best shot. After doing it, I can say the levels are pretty well constructed. One thing I wanna say is in EDF4 I was going in with way more armor, while EDF5 made things a lot easier for lower armor runs I’m not really all that disappointed I liked how everything just fits together in 5 if that makes any sense… I think it was for the best, one thing I wanna say is for EDF6 I hope there’s more tougher levels, EDF5 does have them but just only few were that hard and those were ones I enjoyed playing the most, the ones that are not hard they just felt like annoying fillers ugh just beat this level and move on. Overall I enjoyed the experience and would recommend others to give it a try themselves, one thing I wanna say is solo online is not an experience for everyone, you gotta have certain patience and mindset for it.

There’s nothing wrong with just doing offline instead, in fact its the mode that’s more balanced for it, if you play online solo you really do have to stick with certain strong weapons. In offline there’s a lot more freedom to approach you can take to win.

Further Q&A #7

Q: Quick question your double shield strategy on 107 looks a bit troublesome still for your teammates despite you tanking?

A: Yes I can see how someone would see it that way. Let me just say this the air raider I played with seemed a bit new to game and was even using a weak low star 88 phobos because I for sure feel phobos was hitting weak enemies weak around me despite that he still won with me. The other 2 perhaps they have more experience with game but I wouldn’t say they had too much familiarity with the level with some of goofy tactics going on around fountain.

Anyway I didn’t really tell that group any plan at all, just said I go and take the front lol. If your curious what I think the ideal way what of been. It be this. I spawn in level as double shield fencer fencer, go around npc avoid recruiting them and go tank around center but I did do this in video. Then the rest of team should take npc and move them to opposite side on the bottom left side OR they could go straight around back right tall buildings. Basically just move them away from the fountain starting area because the tadpoles are scripted to fly in formation right over the fountain and even land there, so unless the group shoots every single tadpole and knows there positioning coming in they get assaulted by tadpoles but at very least my group had npc full health there to tank everything along with them. Personally I do think its worth abandoning the npc nixes.

You may say “but your group has to help you at start?” Yes the help is appreciated for making fencer last longer but you could move and attack at sametime its not that hard to do but if that seems too annoying because buildings are blocking you or your out of range the slow classes can just focus on moving npc to the other side of map and if someone on group is fast class they can stay behind supporting and then easily regroup with rest of team and npc. Or at start if you have an air raider you drop a few phobos when enemies cluster I mean just wiping out even some of enemies(not all) can make fencer last much longer and then start to move. Remember the waves don’t proceed until only few enemies are left like anywhere from 4-15 enemies alive.

There’s really numerous ways you can attempt and adjust this strategy to make it safer on the team than what I DID but you can always just hold your ground at fountain too if you value Nixes that much or just being super lazy about positioning. A full health NPC groups should make that tadpole wave not so bad really.

Here’s video from Kevin around 11:00 in playing with a friend on inferno on that same stage. His friend had full health npc and walking along street to one of suggested corners I was talking about. To me it seems 1 ranger with missile launcher probably mex emerald had no trouble at all fending off this tadpole wave so I have no reason to believe this wave is that bad with full health npc alive. – []

Anyway I apologize about naming 107 wrong(106) in my video, funny thing is I get some of stages mixed up with offline list.

Further Q&A End

Q: There are so many techniques on this guide! Do you think you there will be chance at discovering any more?

A: Like I said before: If I discover anything else I’ll report it here. But to answer the question properly, I believe I’m at the end of the road when it comes to techniques. I don’t really think there’s anything else left to discover…

Q: I read advanced technique #1, but you wrote so much its kinda confusing with just skimming through it. Can you sum it up better?

A: It’s not actually all that complicated, I wrote a lot on it because it’s a bit of a foreign idea At the same time, I felt that Fencer’s exoskeletons are not really talked about much. So I threw some talking points in with those, but it’s actually just as simple concept as dash hops. Except you press 1 or 2 more buttons, along with just having appropriate dash/booster setups. That’s about it.

Q: Why do you bother playing in online mode solo and with low armor at that?

A: Good question, I very much enjoy answering this, I like to play it because it provides a difficult scenario for me to work with, in the end there’s nothing in it for me reward wise but I like that under such strict environment the game forces me to uses my head more instead of brute forcing through stage, every level becomes like a puzzle to me. Bring the right tools, use the right methods and win. The game in offline mode is just way too easy for me and I feel the Fencer especially is powerful enough to beat any content not to mention he’s just so much fun to use.

Q: What’s your favorite Fencer video from a random Fencer in EDF5?

A: Really tough to pick because there’s lots of good ones done by many other players, but I think this decides it for me

this level is tough alone in online but this guy had the patience to get through it and with a Vibro roller of all things. hehe kinda ironic I’d make basic dash hopping my favorite video but I can really respect what this player accomplished here in this long drawn out battle. Now despite that he was using basic dash hopping he was using AT#1 for the smooth reloading I believe although its extremely tough to tell on a speed up video, so I might be wrong on that but I wouldn’t be surprised the technique is more commonly known among JP players.

To me it’s a tossup between this M-88, M-107,M-109, M-110 , DLC1 M-15, DLC2 M-13, DLC2 M-14 all being hardest for Fencer to clear on solo with low armor. Essentially this are the you can’t dodge everything on online alone levels. Obviously it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to dodge everything but rather expect to just take small hit here and there or try to blend in tanking with mobility. Obviously with limits off the dlc weapons are probably powerful enough to make a joke of M-88, M-107,M-109. M-110, so I am always talking about limits being on here.

Q[from Gordon]: Hey, Vlad. Are you okay? You seemed a bit… stressed as you wrote more and more into this guide. Something wrong?

A: I’m not sure, but… maybe. I suppose it’s like eldritch knowledge: You descend into madness the more you know. Knowledge is maddening after a certain extent, even if it is for something you live. Maybe its time to just take a break from all this for me. That way I can just go back to being my usual self…

That’s enough questions for now, everyone. Even I have my limits. Maybe I’ll add more to this guide at some point.

For now, though? I just hope you had a chance to learn something that might change up how you play. Take it, or leave it, I hope this knowledge helps.

=| Closing Thoughts |=

The guide was written mostly by me; Vlady. – []

Grammar check from; Gordon Freeman. – []  (Still a WIP, and this will stay here until Gordon himself gives the OK!)



(Note from Gordon: Likely won’t be done until Vlad himself finishes up the guide completely. SOMEONE’S gotta keep this text clean. Okay, but in all seriousness: Thanks for letting me help ya, Vlad. I learned some things too!)

If I discover anything else worth mentioning? I’ll make sure to report it here in the guide.

If anyone has any questions about anything Fencer related, you’re free to ask me. I’ve done just about everything with Fencer, so I can confidently give you any answer you seek.

You’ll notice, perhaps, some info isn’t on here. Please understand that, again, this is for people who already know the basics that were covered in Moat’s guide already. But if it’s something that needs to be really discussed in great detail, tell me and then I’ll think about adding it.

…Honestly? I’m not sure why the hell I even wrote this guide, nor am I sure if there’s anyone even around who’s willing to learn about “Advanced EDF” things. Especially after all that’s been going on from 2020-2021 so far. In any case? This guide will be here to stay around, seeing as nobody else covers these tactics…

At least, not in English.

Alright.. guys I need to chill out. Good luck don’t worry I’m still here if you got any questions, but I don’t wanna be occupied by my guide for too long. There’s lot other things I wanted try doing not EDF related.

I need to make an announcement, I removed all the things I said about Jackhammer. Why did I remove them, because I see how much people like this setup, let me just say in the end I’ll say it’s good loadout and leave it at that but my opinion simply is it will never be the most optimal thing for me to use. Great, with that out of the way, I hope we can all get along, I didn’t write my guide to be a hateful person towards other people of different skill levels, I wrote it to be informative simple as that alright so we could all be better fencers and the fact is even if you do jack and dexter a lot of these techniques are still useful to you, do you have to learn them all, no, it can just 1, some, or all.

Being hateful all the time is just extremely exhausting/energy consuming and it feels kind of ♥♥♥♥♥♥ too. I can completely understand that some people see the stuff in here as a bit taboo but you will have to understand these things are stuck in EDF5 for forever whenever you like it or not. Cool peace out everyone.


I hope you enjoy the Guide we share about EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 5 – Useful Techniques for Hopping & Dashing + Defending the Earth Strategy; if you think we forget to add or we should add more information, please let us know via commenting below! See you soon!

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