4-star threat

Heizou is Genshin Impact’s best four-star character since Bennett

Blow them away.

Heizou about to attack

Genshin Impact 2.8 brought the storm. Kaedehara Kazuha finally received a story quest, and those who missed out on the wandering swordsman were able to reunite in his latest rerun. Klee, another five-star who’s been waiting for a comeback, also got her second rerun. Little did Genshin players realize that the real star of the show would be the latest four-star, Shikanoin Heizou. It’s been two days since the 2.8 update and fans have already found ways to turn him into the best four-star DPS in months. He’s not actually better than Bennett, but he’s pretty damn good.

We knew Heizou would be a troublemaker from the beginning. After all, he’s an Inazuman detective who doesn’t play by the rules. Even Kujou Sara mentioned that her colleague often doled out justice on his own terms. He made waves as the first melee catalyst — and the first male catalyst user, too! What we didn’t expect was for him to become the game’s best four-star DPS.

Genshin Impact fans have taken to social media to rave about Heizou’s sheer power.

“I was so worried after going through building Xiao (I love my boy but damn I cannot make him do dmg), but Heizou hits like a fucking trUCK,” one believer wrote.

That says a lot, considering Xiao is one of the most popular DPS units in the game.

Some players also tested Heizou in the Spiral Abyss, the game’s ultimate test of how strong a character is, at lower levels with a mish-mash of gear. One player tried him with a four-piece Viridescent Venerer set, which boosts his Swirl DMG more than the two-piece Glad and two-piece Viridescent build.

“He was using 4 [Viridescent Venerer] with pyro reso without any damage boosting buff in Abyss,” they reported, “yet he could dish out a 70k punch.” They weren’t the only one.

Heizou’s normal attacks deal an average amount of damage, so you might not notice big numbers right away. However, his Heartstopper Strike Elemental Skill multiples damage with “Declension” stacks that he can charge up over time. That’s what really makes him a threat.

I started investigating Heizou when someone posted a screenshot of their 21k damage Heartstopper Strike. Their Heizou was only level 40. I didn’t plan on leveling Heizou because I wanted to spend my time on Kazuha. However, if you only need Heizou at level 40, why not? I fiddled with my artifacts to see if I could make hard-hitting Heizou at that level.

My inspiration equipped two Viridescent Venerer and two Gladiator’s Finale pieces. That’s an 18 percent ATK boost and 15 percent Anemo DMG boost. Like they suggested, I used a fully leveled Crit Rate circlet and Anemo Goblet. I happened to have a Skyward Atlas from my Yae Miko leveling days, so I equipped that. I scrapped together as many high Crit DMG artifacts I could and called it a day.

It’s enough. My Heizou can regularly hit between 18-21k with a charged Heartstopper Strike at level 40.

Heizou’s signature Windmuster Kick.


Those who fully leveled Heizou happily reported that he only gets better from there. One Twitter user posted a clip of their Heizou blowing away a Cryo Regisvine with a Windmuster Kick. Their Heizou was level 90 with a level 9 Elemental Skill and Burst — nearly maxed out. This person equipped two-piece Glads, two-piece Viridescent, and a fully leveled Widsith, which raises Crit DMG instead of ATK like Skyward Atlas. In the clip, they nearly one-hit KO the Regisvine with a 130k Heartstopper punch before finishing them off with Heizou’s Burst. It’s clear he’s a weapon on his own as a four-star DPS, even if he’s less versatile as a teammate than Kazuha.

Before Heizou, Yanfei was the four-star DPS queen. She’s known as “budget Klee” because she and her five-star counterpart both work as Pyro catalyst DPS units in the meta. However, many prefer Yanfei because of how easy it is to fluidly attack at a range and apply Pyro to enemies. Other competent four-star DPS include Xiangling, Beidou, and Razor. However, that number rises depending on the constellations, which can transform a mediocre four-star into a powerhouse.

Heizou’s perfect if you want to play with a hard-hitting Anemo catalyst without much commitment. Just level him up to level 40 and play around with your artifacts. Then, when you finally get enough materials to fully level him, you can have the satisfaction of watching him delete enemies with Anemo DMG.

The Genshin Impact 2.8 update launched July 12. It’s available for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, iOS, and Android. (If you want to build Heizou, there’s still time!)

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