Lately, it’s hard to go anywhere gaming-related without seeing or hearing about Genshin Impact, miHoYo’s latest free-to-play action RPG. Borrowing exploration elements from games like Breath of the Wild, Genshin Impact envelops players in a richly detailed world with breathtaking views, vivid colors, and fully a fleshed out lore. Even with the game’s “gacha” mechanics, it’s possible to fully enjoy everything about the game without spending a single dime.
That’s right. Like many other freemium titles out there, Genshin Impact makes its money off microtransactions, and random character/item pulls. There are several characters you get for free just by playing, but obtaining more, better characters can be done through a Wish system that requires a paid currency or a currency that can be gained by grinding through certain aspects of the game. Unlike many gacha games, Genshin Impact feels like a AAA title and almost pushes the gacha element to the background.
You start the game by selecting either a male or a female twin. Shortly after you’ll recruit Amber, an archer with Fire abilities, every character you recruit will have a weapon of choice and an elemental power. Each also has its own in-depth background and personality. Each is more than just a block of stats and a rarity rating. Immediately thrust into the story, you’ll discover the world of Teyvat and the Seven Archons that rule it. You’ll climb mountains, swim through lakes, raid dungeons, fight dragons, and so much more.
MiHoYo has set a new bar for quality for free-to-play games with Genshin Impact. They respect their players, offer top quality gameplay, an immense map to explore, and plenty of stories to keep people interested. They also offer more to those who have the money to pay for it, but only if you want to. The game never pressures you to pay for anything.
My kids and I have been having a blast with the game. Playable on the PC or mobile with cloud-based saves makes it easy to play the game at home or on the go. It’s coming to the Switch soon, too. While it’s also available on the PS4, you can take advantage of having a cross-platform account there. Your PS4 account is linked to the PS4 version of the game only. Blame Sony for that one. Also, Xbox players are out of luck, as there seems to be no plan to release the game on the system.
Media personality Rob Kalajian has been a staple in the board game world for many years. As a former writer for Purple Pawn and the owner of A Pawn’s Perspective, Rob focuses on board game reviews, events, and news. A self-proclaimed geek, Rob loves all things toys and games and even helps raise his four kids in his spare time.
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