Since the game’s release on September 28, 2020, Genshin Impact has received 7 patches.
Each patch brought new content to the game: characters, weapons, quests, events, and even various mini-games. Update 1.5 even introduced the Serenitea Pot housing system, but the two best-received pre-2.0 patches were 1.2 and 1.6.
Both of these patches brought new explorable areas into the game with Dragonspine and the Golden Apple Archipelago respectively. Unfortunately, the Golden Apple Archipelago will disappeared when patch 1.6 ended, but it was a blast to explore.
In any case, for the majority of players, Genshin Impact is at its best when there are new areas to explore, chests to find, and hidden secrets to uncover.
And the new 2.0 patch was the biggest patch the game has received to date, featuring a whole new region – Inazuma.
Genshin Impact 2.0 was released on July 21st.
But let’s see what exactly it brought to the table.
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New Region – Inazuma
Before patch 2.0, we only got to explore two regions in Genshin Impact – Mondstadt and Liyue.
Mondstadt is the introductory region inspired by Western Europe and Germany in particular, whereas Liyue is inspired by China.
As for Inazuma, it draws its inspiration from Japan, a setting that is bound to be a fan-favorite in a game all about collecting anime characters.
Unfortunately, only three of the six islands that comprise Inazuma were released in 2.0. The rest will get released in later patches. But even with only three new islands, this new update features not only the largest new explorable landmass since the game’s release but also the densest one. And you shouldn’t underestimate the wealth of F2P Primogems it permanently added to the game.
It also retains and utilizes the Boat Travel system introduced in patch 1.6, so exploration isn’t just tied to land this time around. Furthermore, Inazuma relies on verticality in its design. While exploring, you will find lots of hidden underground and even underwater locations. Expect lots of achievements, puzzles, collectibles, world quests, a new reputations system, and more.
And just like every other region, Inazuma came with its own quests.
Unfortunately, we won’t get to experience the entire Chapter 2 of the Inazuma storyline. Nevertheless, Arcs I and II were all available on the day patch 2.0 went live, introducing new characters, factions, and lots of new conflicts.
Arc III will hopefully drop in patch 2.1, as waiting any longer without the ability to replay story quests can leave the experience feeling a bit disjointed. For example, one of the previous quest leaves the Traveler feeling quite distraught, but we forgot all about this in the two months it took for the next quest to get released.
The main story of Genshin Impact started a bit bland, but it only got better with time, eventually bringing some genuinely surprising twists and truly epic moments.
Aside from Archon Quests, we also got Character Quests for Ayaka and Yoimiya, as well as numerous World Quests. World Quests, in particular, got a lot longer and more engaging than before. Hopefully, we’ll get some hangout events with the cast of Inazuma characters soon as well.
Speaking of whom…
Ayaka is a 5* Cryo Sword user featured on the first Limited Character Banner of the patch.
It’s rare for characters to be fan-favorites before they even get released, but Ayaka has managed to achieve this. As one of the characters featured in CBT2, fans have known about Ayaka for years and have been eagerly anticipating her arrival.
And she lives up to the hype, with an interesting playstyle that relies on using her Alternate Sprint to dart around the map and give her weapon a Cryo infusion. Even though the game isn’t lacking in great Cryo characters, Ayaka is be the first traditional Cryo DPS with an infusion on her weapon attacks. For more details, check out our detailed Ayaka guide.
Yoimiya is a 5*Pyro Bow user set to be featured on the Second Character Banner of the patch.
What makes her unique is that she can infuse her Normal Attacks with Pyro. All bow users infuse their arrows with their element when using Charged Attacks, but Yoimiya alone can infuse her normal attacks, which will make for a wholly unique playstyle.
Also making her way on the second Limited Character Banner is Sayu, a 4* Anemo Claymore user and… supposedly a ninja?
Everything about her kit looks unconventional. Anemo characters have thus far proven to be some of the more interesting characters in terms of varied gameplay. Sayu is continuing this trend, what with her Sonic the Hedgehog-like spinning charge.
We’ll be adding all new characters to our character tier list as soon as they get released so that you always know who to pull for.
What makes the main character unique in Genshin Impact is that they can resonate with each element by interacting with the Statues of the Seven. This makes them the only playable character who can use multiple elements. Inazuma will feature its own Statue of the Seven, which will let you unlock the electro mode for the Traveler.
And while the Anemo Traveler is kind of mediocre and the Geo Traveler only good in niche teams, the Electro Traveler is looking to finally live up to the status of a 5* character.
Beidou isn’t a new character, but players were able to get her for free as part of the Thunder Sojourn Event in patch 2.0.
She is a 4* Electro Claymore user that can buff up your team’s damage, create shields, and reflect any attack aimed at her.
Her Burst is exceptionally good and it’s only going to get better once the electro element gets some much-needed love. But she isn’t a one-trick pony who only relies on her Burst. Her playstyle is genuinely one of the most interesting and most engaging in the whole game, as she is the sole character in the game with the parry mechanic – the ability to avoid all damage and fling it back at your opponents in a massive AOE if your reflexes are on-point.
New Story Characters
The 2.0 developer stream also showcased all the new Inazuma characters which we will interact with through the story but that won’t be playable in 2.0.
- Thoma – the chief retainer of the Kamisato Clan looks visually distinct from the rest of the Inazuma cast with his blond hair.
- Yae Miko – the allegiance of the Guuji of the Grand Narukami Shrine remains unknown, but she will be an important character in the story moving forward.
- Kujou Sara – the leader of the Shogun’s Vision Hunt Decree forces and adopted daughter of the Kujou clan leader is looking like a certified badass.
- Baal/Raiden Shogun/Electro Archon – call her what you will, but the first female Archon looks to continue the trend of Archons being absolutely overpowered.
- Sangonomiya Kokomi – despite her appearances, she is the leader of the Sangonomiya resistance.
- Gorou – you can’t see him in the picture, but this animal-eared warrior is the general of the Sangonomiya troops.
In addition to the new Limited Banner Weapons, patch 2.0 is set to bring a whole new set of craftable weapons, all of which are looking good. We’ve briefly explained what the new weapons do below, but for a detailed look at how they stack up to previous weapons check out our weapon tier list.
- Katsuragikiri Nagamasa is an Energy Recharge Claymore that every supporting character will want, as it also increases Elemental Skill DMG and has a built-in way of accelerating said energy recharge whenever you use your Elemental Skills.
- Amenoma Kageuchi is an ATK% Sword that also features energy gaining perks. This will make it a go-to choice for free-to-play players looking to manage their new Ayaka’s costly 80 Energy Bursts.
- Hamayumi is an ATK% Bow that increases Normal and Charged Attack DMG by a sizeable amount and then doubles that bonus when you have full energy. It’s hard to imagine a character that doesn’t want to use their Elemental Burst, but we’re sure this bow will find a home in some builds.
- Kitain Cross Spear is an Elemental Mastery Spear with the same effect as the Claymore – increases Elemental Skill DMG and recharges energy when you use Elemental Skills. It’s debatable whether Elemental Mastery is a better substat here, but we’re sure support characters will love it regardless.
- Hakushin is an Energy Recharge Catalyst that gives an Elemental Damage buff whenever it is used to proc an elemental reaction. What’s more, it gives this buff to the character who set up the reaction as well.
Limited Banner Weapons
- Mistsplitter Reforged is a 5* Sword.
This is a CRIT DMG Sword that increases Elemental DMG and then increases it again! It’s hard to imagine any weapon doing more damage on sword DPS characters that rely on elemental damage like Ayaka and Keqing.
- Thundering Pulse 5* Bow.
This is a CRIT DMG Bow that increases ATK% and Normal DMG, guaranteed to be great on Yoimiya.
The Limited Weapon Banner was notorious for not having any built-in guarantees you’ll get the weapon you want. It looks like the developers finally addressed this issue in patch 2.0, but not in a manner that is even remotely F2P friendly. Now, you can pick which 5* weapon you’d like to get and if you don’t get it the first two times, your third 5* will be that weapon, guaranteed.
This would’ve been greedy but acceptable if it carried over between banners, but as things stand, the only way to guarantee you’ll get the 5* weapon you want is to have enough Fates for 270 pulls.
The release of Inazuma with patch 2.0 also brought us three new domains, one for the Inazuma roster’s Talent Books, one for the Weapons Ascension Materials of new weapons, and one for the two new artifact sets.
The Emblem of Severed Fate 5* artifact set will have the following set bonuses:
- 2-Piece Set: Energy Recharge +20%.
- 4-Piece Set: Increases Elemental Burst DMG by 25% of Energy Recharge. A maximum of 75% bonus DMG can be obtained this way.
The Shimenawa’s Reminiscence 5* artifact set will have the following set bonuses:
- 2-Piece Set: ATK +18%
- 4-Piece Set: When casting an Elemental Skill, if the character has 15 or more Energy, they lose 15Energy and Normal/Charged/Plunging Attack DMG is increased by 50% for 10s.
We’ve yet to see how profound an impact these new sets will have on the current metagame, but both of them look exciting.
All Burst Supports will want a piece of the 4-Piece Emblen of Severed Fate, whereas the 4-Piece Shimenawa’s Reminiscence is looking more geared towards DPS characters.
Patch 2.0 will also bought us a gadget that can be used to recycle unwanted 5* artifacts into new ones. Only four artifact sets will be attainable this way: Gladiator’s Finale, Wanderer’s Troupe, Noblesse Oblige, and Bloodstained Chivalry. To get 1 new artifact, you will need to spend 3 old ones.
Check out our guide on the best artifacts for each character to learn how valuable this new gadget will be for you.
No new region would be complete without giving us new enemies to face off against, and Inazuma offers quite the variety.
The region features three open-world bosses: the Pyro Hypostasis, the Perpetual Mechanical Array, and Maguu Kenki whom the players first saw in 1.6 in the temporary Golden Apple Archipelago.
Aside from the bosses, Inazuma is also be populated by less powerful enemies.
The jellyfish-looking Ruin Sentinels are unlike any other enemy.
The Ronin occupy the spot of human opponents, much like the Treasure Hunters in Mondstadt and Liyue.
The Hilichurl and the Abyss families got Electro reskins of some of their already existing members.
And joining the ranks of the Fatui is the Mirror Maiden.
Patch 2.0 is set to feature five events:
- Thunder Sojourn – where we can get the free Beidou.
- Theater Mechanicus: Stage of Wonders – the new and improved Tower Defense mini-game first featured in patch 1.3.
- Phantom Flow – an event with challenges that can be tackled at various difficulties for different rewards.
- Ley Line Overflow – during this event the first three Ley Lines you spend Original Resin on each day will yield double the reward.
- Lost Riches – a treasure hunting event that features a Mini Seelie as one of the main rewards.
Music may not be the first thing on people’s mind when they think of Genshin Impact, but the game has an incredible OST. What’s more, the music for each region was performed by some big names related to the culture that inspired said region.
The soundtrack for Mondstadt was recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
The soundtrack for Liyue was recorded by the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra.
And now the soundtrack for Inazuma features the talents of the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra.
This time around, miHoYo has also introduced some gating mechanics to prevent players from speedrunning all the Inazuma contents in a matter of days, as was the case with Dragonspine. This mostly boils down to some long quest chains needing a day to pass by before you can proceed further with them.
Time gating sounds awful, but with how content-rich Inazuma is you’ll barely notice it.
In any case, if you’re the type of player who plays every new patch for a couple of days, just know that you’ll still be able to experience most Inazuma content as soon as you unlock the region.
If you’ve been away from the game, now is the best time to hop back in. With a whole new region to explore, new islands set to release in subsequent patches, and loads of new 5* and 4* characters coming into the game, it looks like Genshin Impact will stay content-rich and engaging throughout the rest of 2021.
Make sure to check out our Ayaka build if you’re a fan of this character. It includes everything from her best weapons and artifacts to ideal compositions that will let you achieve maximum results with the new Cryo waifu.
Also, let us know what aspect of Inazuma you’re most excited about in the comments.