Genshin Impact Beginner’s Guide: Everything you need to know to get started

miHoYo /
1 of 8

Everything you need to know before jumping into the fantasy world of Genshin Impact.

Genshin Impact is the latest game from developer miHoYo, which just got a worldwide release after months of closed beta testing in China. Often referred to as the ‘Breath of the Wild clone,’ Genshin Impact has a lot more going for it upon closer examination, and it can certainly seem overwhelming when starting out.

With that said, we’re here to make the transition into the world of Teyvat a little bit smoother, and make sure you know what you should be focusing on, to make sure you’re getting the most out of your early hours with the game.

What is Genshin Impact?

Just in case the art style caught your eye but you’re not even sure what kind of game Genshin Impact is, let me break it down for you in simple terms. Genshin Impact is a free-to-play open-world action RPG with a Gacha (summoning or pulling heroes and items at random) system. If you’ve played mobile games like Puzzle & Dragons, Final Fantasy Brave Exvius, Fire Emblem Heroes, or even developer MiHoYo’s previous game Honkai Impact 3rd, then you basically know what a Gacha system is, whereas you use currency, premium or otherwise, to summon hero units at random to add to your roster.

Unlike those games where those heroes are usually used as part of a squad, and sometimes even simply a picture like in the case of Puzzle & Dragons, each of the 18 heroes in Genshin Impact are fully playable characters with their own movesets, powers and elements.

Cross-play and cross-progression

Before we get into the beginner’s guide portion, I do want to mention that the game is currently available to play on PC, PS4, Android and iOS, with full cross-play between all devices. The game does support cross-progression too but only between PC and mobile. PS4 has its own account system which means you won’t be able to hop back and forth between the PS4 and other platforms.

With that out of the way, let’s get started on what you need to know when starting the game.