Genshin Impact Beginner’s Guide to Characters, Combat, and Currencies

By | October 5, 2020

Last Edited:

Currently, Genshin Impact is playable on PC, PS4, and mobile devices. Due to the UID System Genshin Impact uses, all three platforms can utilize co-op cross-play. However, only PC and iOS share a cross-save feature, while PS4 does not..

Upon starting the game, you will pick between one of the two Travelers and give them a name – but this is not the only character you’ll be able to play as in Genshin Impact. One of the main features of this game is the ability to form a party of 4 characters, and swap between them rapidly to perform elemental combo attacks or utilize their particular strengths in a fight.

Each character will have a basic attack, a stronger charge up attack, an Elemental Skill, and an Elemental Burst. They can also wield a sword, 2-handed claymore, bow, or a magic catalyst. With over 20 Characters already in the game, you’ll find many different combinations of weapons and elements, allowing you to mix and match a team to cater to your style – if you can obtain the right characters that is.

Simply by playing the story, you’ll unlock 3 additional characters to fill out your party of 4 – but as each Character comes with an innate weapon and elemental type, you won’t be able to utilize each type without claiming additional characters. You’ll unlock this ability once you reach Adventurer Rank 5 during the game’s tutorial, as well as the ability to purchase microtransactions.


In order to get more characters, you’ll need to use the power of Wishes for the chance to summon rare Characters – but doing so will cost your a specific type of hard to find currency. As is the case with many Gacha type games, you will be able to choose between several themed event wishes and expend either Acquainted Fates or Intertwined Fates to “roll” for a reward – which will either summon a weapon or a character. Both have different rarity types, and the more rare a Character is, the less chance you’ll get one on a given roll.

Luckily, certain systems are in effect to make sure you won’t be unlucky forever, as saving up Fates to roll in quantities of 10 in most events will guarantee at least on 4-star Character. Additionally, the longer you roll and do not get a 4 or 5-star Character, the better your chances will approve until you finally do get lucky. Be sure to look at the details of each Wish Event to see what the probabilities are listed at, and who you might be able to summon.

If you are awarded a character you already have in your group, you’ll be instead given extra resources and currency that can be traded in for rare valuables – so that nothing truly goes to waste.

It is of course important to note that while the rate at which you’ll gain Fate or the currency needed to buy Fate is very low – you do not need to utilize Wishes and summon new character to play Genshin Impact, as you can progress through the game using your default party.

As you begin exploring Genshin Impact, your companion Paimon will do a pretty good job at explaining how to get around. Like Link in Breath of the Wild, you can dash for short amounts of time using your stamina meter, as well as climb up virtually any surface (and expend extra stamina to jump up). Best of all – rain won’t impede your climbing progress.

Once you reach the town of Monstandt during the Prologue, you’ll be awarded a glider to safely glide your way down from tall areas, or perform falling elemental attacks on unsuspecting enemies. Just like Breath of the Wild, creating explosions or lighting things on fire with Pyro attacks can create temporary updrafts for you to rise up on your Glider.

Combat will start off simplistic, but eventually you’ll want to be prepared for tougher boss fights or encounters – which is where Character swapping and elemental combos become more important. Many enemies you’ll face may be weak or resistant to certain types of elements, and you’ll want to make the most of this by switching to different characters, and using their elemental attacks to stun, debuff, or slow enemies. On top of this, hitting an enemy with multiple elements in quick succession can cause some exciting reactions – like using freezing Cryo and windy Anemo abilities to summon a blizzard effect that completely cuts through enemy defenses!

On top of this, simply having a robust group of characters with specific elements in a party can provide passive buffs. Having 4 characters with unique elements will decrease the elemental damage your party takes overall, while having two Pyro teammates will lower the duration of any Cryo moves used against you.

In your travels through Genshin Impact, you’ll soon notice that you may be leveling up in different areas. This is because you’ll be earning two types of experience: Character Experience and Adventurer’s Experience. These encompass two very different things – and yet both are tied to your progression in Genshin Impact.

Each time you fight and defeat enemies, your entire party will gain Character Experience. This will go towards your individual characters gaining levels to increase their health, attack power, and defense. However, you may find that enemies give a fairly low amount of experience, and in order to vastly raise a character’s level – or bring a new party member up to speed – is to use Character EXP Material found in chests or gained as rewards, like Wanderer’s Advice. Each of these will grant a character much more experience than fighting a single monster, but will also require a bit of gold (Mora) when used in the Character screen to level up faster.

On the other side, you’ll gain Adventurer Experience as you explore more of the land, take on quests, uncover shrines and teleport waypoints, and more. You Adventurer’s Rank is directly tied to how much of the game is open to you, which main story quests you can embark upon, and what kind of loot you can gain – plus the difficulty of enemies. Additionally, you can speak with the Adventurer’s Guild in the city of Monstadt to find that they will reward you with tons of bonus items each time you gain a rank.

Note that both your Character Levels and Adventurer’s Rank will max out at 20, and cannot be pushed higher. Instead, you’ll need to embark upon special challenges called Ascension Quests. As characters gain in Ascension levels, they will unlock new Talents and augment their powers. Meanwhile, increasing the Ascension of your Adventurer’s Rank will increase the world level, giving you bigger rewards and tougher enemies to contend with.

Adventurer Rank Unlocks
Rank Level Content Available
5 Wishes, In Game Shop
8 Ley Line Outcrops (Enemy Waves)
14 Expeditions for Characters not in Party
16 Co-op Mode, Abyssal Domains (Weapon Forging)
20 Battle Pass, Spiral Abyss

Like many other Gacha style games, Genshin Impact will introduce many types of currency that can be hard to keep track of their purpose. Despite this only one type of currency can be bought for real money, and that currency can then be exchanged for numerous things. Remember that you don’t necessarily need to spend any real money to unlock things in Genshin Impact, you will only acquire certain currency at a slower rate.

  • Mora is the most basic type of currency. Also known as gold, it can be gained from doing just about everything, including opening chests, Defeating enemies, and completing quests and your Adventurer Handbook – and claiming rewards from the guild as you increase your Adventurer’s Rank. You can even trade in other currency like Stardust to get lots of it at once. Mora can be spent on many of the basic merchants in the world and in major cities to buy things like food ingredients, basic weapons and artifacts, and more.
  • Primogen is one of the more valuable currencies that is also rewarded in small amounts for doing just about anything – like discovering new things, defeating groups of enemies, completing achievements, and sometimes rewarded for increasing your Adventurer’s Rank. Primogens are mainly used to create both Antiquated Fates and Intertwined Fates – which are used in Wishes.
  • Fates, as mentioned above, come in two types: Antiquated Fates and Intertwined Fates, that are used for separate event Wishes to “pull” different groups of characters and weapons. Very rare to find on their own, they are sometimes rewarded by the guild at certain Adventurer Ranks – or given out by the developers in in-game mail. Most often, they are crafted from Primogens, which can be done automatically when trying to roll for a Wish banner when you lack the required amount.
  • Genesis Crystals are only obtainable by purchasing them in bulk in exchange for real money. For those looking to get ahead, Genesis Crystals can then be used to purchase packs of items and resources, or converted into Primogens if you are trying to participate in a Wish and lack the required Fates.
  • Starglitter and Stardust are given out in Wishes as you obtain characters – moreso if you happen to summon a duplicate. These types of currency can be used in the shop’s exchange menu to trade for specific rewards, which can include specific characters you may have been unable to obtain in your rolls thus far. Both currencies can also be used to gain more Fates, as well as other resources, and even Mora.
  • Sigils and Oculi (like Anemo Sigils and Anemoculus) are dependant on the regions you explore, and while sigils can be found by opening chests and defeating enemies, the Oculus appear as floating collectibles all over the place. Sigils can then be used at that region’s town to buy certain souvenirs and upgrades, while the Oculi can be used on the Statues of the Seven that dot the landscape to upgrade them in exchange for blessings and various types of rewards, like increased stamina!
  • Original Resin is a unique type of currency that is only used in regard to Ley Line Blossom challenge events that will begin popping up across the land after reaching Adventurer Rank 8. After defeating the waves of opponents summoned at the Ley Lines, you can revitalize the blossom by spending a certain amount of Resin to gain experience rewards. Players can only have up to 120 Original Resin, and it will slowly regenerate your amount over time once you’ve spend some. However, if you want to replenish your stock faster, you’ll need to spend Primogen to speed up the process, or get Fragile Resin as a reward and use them to replenish 60 Original Resin at once.