The Finnish Phoenix
I think I'm in the minority but I actually enjoyed the farm for AFDL, much more than the one I'm on right now for VHL. AFDL had enough variety to me that I never felt like I was bored with it. Sure, sometimes getting some of the drops was a bit of a grind, but most things seemed to drop often enough that it never felt like I was slogging through it. Granted, CVKS helped a ton with it, as did Crag and Bamboozle. But basically, you just have to set a goal and go for that each day. I liked to try to get a turn in of Willpower Extraction done every day or two, and I could usually meet that goal. But if you don't have as much time or resources, just try to get three or four things for the quest every day, and then soon enough you'll be turning in the quest. AFDL's rough because of the Uni 35 RNG but at this point in the game, you don't need the full set. Get both helms or one helm and the cape and you'll be fine. Try to combine things too: go for Uni 19 and King Klunk's Crown at the same time by doing The Assistant.
I also found it easier for me to only stack the things as much as I needed for the quest. So I wouldn't stack up a huge number of Chaoroots or Favors or anything beforehand, I'd just get as many as I needed for one turn-in and then go on to the next thing. It helps to keep you from getting burned out on farming the same thing over and over again.
The only way I can rationalize where you're coming is that the VHL line only seems worse because it's the grind you're currently on and at the forefront of your mind, but it's by far the better line because you can actually make surefire progress towards your end goal rather than be entirely at the mercy of something beyond your control in the RNG. It's not without reason that you're in the minority and that the AFDL line is as hated as it is. Void Highlord's quest has virtually no RNG and the Archfiend Doomlord chain involves *a lot* throughout.
It's also not without reason that Unidentified 35 is widely considered the worst-handled quest item in the game's history, please don't encourage Asuka and/or Tendou to persist in such asinine quest development. "You don't have to go for AFDL" is not an argument for the AFDL farm being enjoyable or reasonable. AFDL is the item to get, the endgame item and the core of the set.
I'm very happy with how VHL was handled at pretty much all levels besides the initial release when Roentgenium was a percentage drop and thankfully that was fixed by being made a 100% drop with a greater required quantity.