The lore used in Girls' Frontline is shared with MICA Team previous game Codename: Bakery Girl, which takes place 30 years after Girls' Frontline. As the story of Girls' Frontline unfolds, it relates more and more to the wider world created by MICA, players should be aware of future spoilers when reading on the expanded world of Girls' Frontline.
The fictional world diverges from the real world starting 1905, with the first discovery of Relic Technology. This is a summary of this extended story.
Sources of lore
Aside from the main stories of the games, the Artbooks and their Confidential Files are the main sources of extended lore. There can also be scattered information in promotional materials. Most of these sources are not officially translated in English but translated by fans, readers should use their own judgement on the accuracy and choices of these translations.
Early relics research
The world of Girls' Frontline takes place in an alternate history, where the Russian Empire accidentally stumbled upon an ancient alien relics site located deep in the Siberian taiga in the early 20th century. Although the alien technology found at the site was far beyond human comprehension at the time, the Russians managed to keep the existence of the ruin a secret and began to extract some of the alien artifacts. This inadvertently caused the reactor within the alien construct to destabilize, and ultimately led to the explosion known as the Tunguska event. Not long afterwards, the Bolshevik Revolution would topple the Empire, leaving the remaining alien constructs within the hands of Soviet Russia.
World War II would happen a few decades later, with the Allies triumphant against the Axis in both the Western and Pacific Theaters. Having emerged as the two reigning superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union eagerly took their war reparations. Much of the Axis's manufacturing and natural resources would end up in the hands of the US, but the Soviet Union secretly took control of all the alien technology that Germany possessed- including the alien research facility Urkunde 01. Cold War soon breaks out between the United States and the Soviet Union, with the latter quickly gaining the upper hand in both nuclear arms technology as well as alien research. By 1950, the Soviets had begun the first concentrated effort to research and synthesize alien tech with Project Starfish. The United States finally discovers the existence of precursor ruins five years later, beginning their own research at a ruin named D-1.
As research into alien technology ramps up, the first alien corpse is found in the Beilan Island ruins, located in the North China Sea near Shanghai. Named GAVIRUL, experiments and research into its biology would however not occur immediately. As the West and the East are competing in an arms race of strange nature, people working with relics sites begin to succumb to the effects of an otherworldly disease. Called Eurosky Low-Emission Infectious Disease (ELID), the mutations are found to be caused by interaction between Collapse Fluid and human biology, and international cooperation soon arises to stop the spread. With more peaceful intents, GAVIRUL is pulled out of storage to try and replicate its DNA to activate the relics, to no avail.
First Beilan Island Incident
In 2030, an incident occurs at the forgotten Beilan Island containment site as a group of seven middle school students break into the ruins, and are attacked almost immediately by mutant ELID sufferers. A militia strike team is sent in to rescue the group, but the squad is quickly overwhelmed and forced to use explosives to ensure that the mutants don't break containment. The explosion provokes a cave-in on the relics site underground, resulting in a massive explosion releasing a huge volume of collapse fluid, who then follows the wind to contaminate a large portion of Earth's land.
As human population decreases at apocalyptic speeds and outdoors work become dangerous, interests ramp up in robotics to replace humans in manual labor. Various high-tech companies scramble to produce more and more sophisticated models, gradually transforming the skeletal-frames robots into full-fledged Tactical Dolls androids fit for military standards.
World War III
As livable land and resources become scarce and political finger pointing sours international relations, a new global conflict starts in 2045. Armies quickly realize the atmospheric collapse cloud makes strategic long-range missile strikes unreliable and quickly shift to bombardments by plane, then to violent ground combat. The war further reduces livable areas as nuclear devastation joins collapse fluid contamination.
In safe areas, military industries thrive. The pre-war innovators have consolidated their technological advancements under IOP Corporation, led by genius and cunning entrepreneur Havier Witkin. By securing the help of top-rank scientists Persicaria and Lycoris, IOP manages to bring their advanced CSD series dolls to the military market, toppling the military favorite Sangvis Ferri Manufacturing and their robust but ultimately simplistic Jaeger model.
In 2051, former superpowers and great nations have been reduced to mere shells of their power and there is no other option left than uneasy peace.
With the tremendous progress in dolls technology and countries in dire need of workforce, the dolls market is bigger than ever, especially for civilian industries. IOP expand their civilian dolls products with emotional simulation, and add greater modularity with concepts such as the Imprint Technology and Fire Control Core, creating a market for civilian-specs dolls with combat capabilities cheaper than military dolls. A major buyer in this market is the PMC Griffin and Kryuger, who staff their entire combat force with armed civilian dolls. Led by former soldier Berezovich Kryuger, G&K quickly partners with IOP to help them make dolls more and more efficient.
However, Lycoris leaves IOP to join Sangvis Ferri when Witkin refuses to fund his self-learning AI research. IOP replies to this defection by creating 16LAB, Persicaria's own R&D company. While 16LAB brings Second Generation T-Dolls to market, selling cheap and modular dolls with standardized Neural Cloud and Dummy Network systems, Sangvis Ferri develops high-tech dolls weaponry and an effective AI-driven top-down orders management system, bringing expensive but deadly products to the market.
As the rivalry between IOP and Sangvis Ferri was reaching its all-time high, SF was utterly destroyed by a paramilitary attack on their main site, killing Lyco and turning their central AI against mankind. Overnight, all Sangvis T-Dolls started killing humans in the region, and G&K was hired to contain the menace with their own T-Doll troops. As SF's self-learning Mastermind leverages SF's production capacities to try and expand her dominion, Persica sends her own experimental T-Doll AR Team into Sangvis territory to seize Lyco's research and personal notes to try and understand the reasons behind the incident.
As Griffin and Kryuger faces problem ramping up its mobilization against Sangvis troops, the PMC recruits new Tactical Commanders to give orders to the frontline dolls. The story of Girls' Frontline begins as a rookie commander must help AR Team's leader AR M4A1M4A1 retrieve her comrades after being separated in the field.