PLAY Magazine UK|December 2021
Don’t know where to begin with Genshin Impact? Alicia Haddick runs down the ten things to know before you jump and glide in
Alicia Haddick

Since its release on PS4 and mobile platforms last year, Genshin Impact has gone from being an unknown free-to-play game from Chinese developer MiHoYo to become one of the biggest games in the world. Offering a vast world for players to explore for free, and an engaging story alongside a ludicrous and seemingly-never ending amount of material, the game has become massive. The ultra-fast loading and slick framerate of the PS5 version improves it even more.

Playing as a lone traveller, you land in the world of Teyvat after losing a battle against a mysterious god and seeing your sibling captured. This results in a long journey in which each new area marks a new adventure, and an ever-growing cast of anime-style characters.

Still, with so much on offer, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start. Don’t worry about that, though. We’ve got your back. Let’s glide in.

01 Welcome to Teyvat

Your adventure takes place in the vast, ever-expanding world of Teyvat. When Genshin launched, two of the seven continents were open to exploration: the land of the Anemo Archon, Mondstadt, and that of the Geo Archon, Liyue.

Each area was inspired by somewhere in the real world (or its myths and history) – Europe in the case of Mondstadt and China in that of Liyue. Since launch, players have also been given the opportunity to explore Inazuma, inspired by Japan, and the frozen peaks of Dragonspine, a region in Mondstadt. You, the Traveler, must venture through the seven nations that make up Teyvat as you search for your lost sibling, and the remaining uncharted lands will be added to the game in future updates. The journey ahead is always clear, and the story leads you through each sizeable open world map entirely for free.

02 An ever-evolving adventure

While the bulk of your time is spent either bashing enemy heads in with flashy anime attacks or solving environmental puzzles to uncover chests, there are plenty of side-activities if you want to veer off the beaten path.

This includes fishing, an Animal Crossing-like teapot world you can customise into a private oasis, and even character-specific, choice-driven branching adventures that help you get to know your favourites better.

03 Spoilt for choice

Buffanime boys and cute anime girls litter Teyvat, and getting to know them and unlocking them for your party is a core part of Genshin Impact’s appeal: not for nothing has this been nicknamed ‘Breath Of The Waifu’. Some, like Mondstadt’s gliding champion, Amber, will join your adventure for free, helping you to build up an intimidating arsenal of fighting prowess, while other characters are randomised drops (the primary way the game tries to persuade you to part with cash). Always pick your favourites, but be sure to look out for characters that complement one another.

Take Spark Knight Klee, for instance. She’s introduced as an innocent child staying with the Knights Of Favonius, but it’s not long before you learn of her incredible powers to craft bombs and the explosive strength of Jumpy Dumpty, which will mercilessly destroy anything in her path with a grin and a cheer. Then you have Zhongli, who will protect you with the power of Geo… when he’s not running from any responsibility of footing the bill for food.

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