How the Dendro element reinvented the Genshin Impact meta

The unofficial “Electro buff.”

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Goodbye Overload, hello Quicken. Genshin Impact Electro characters have been waiting for a buff since the game’s September 2020 launch. The Genshin community suspected that the element would finally get a readjustment with the Inazuma region because it’s the home of the Electro Archon, but alas, it did not happen. Little did they know it was because HoYoverse would deliver the fix with Genshin Impact 3.0. Thanks to the Dendro element, players are finally using less appreciated characters like Keqing.

Many Genshin Impact teams base their damage on Elemental Reactions like Melt, Vaporize, Electro-Charge, and Swirl. Dendro incorporates two new subsets of reactions: Quicken, which branches into either the Aggravate or Spread depending on either an Electro or Dendro follow-up attack; and Bloom, which spawns Dendro Cores when Dendro meets Hydro. Dendro Cores can then be used to activate Hyperbloom, Burgeon, or Rupture depending on how the player interacts with the Cores.

Hydro characters have more options outside of Vape and Taser comps now. Kokomi arguably had her “buff” with the release of the Ocean-Hued Clam artifact set, but she just got another one as a premier Bloom applicator. Meanwhile, characters that can quickly apply Pyro like Thoma can now fit into the niche meta for Burgeon reactions. That’s not even the main course, though: It’s Electro.

Dendro reactions based around Electro have significantly shifted the meta. Characters known for liberally applying Electro like Keqing, Yae Miko, Kuki Shinobu, Fischl, and Beidou suddenly have more utility than ever. Electro attacks trigger Hyperbloom when they interact with Dendro Cores, spawning target-seeking arrows. Meanwhile, Aggravate and Spread multiplies elemental damage similarly to Melt and Vaporize.

One Genshin player showed off how their Tighnari/Yae Miko comp fried the Primo Geovishap boss in 5 seconds. Another Yae Miko fan did it in about 40 seconds. Their party included Dendro Traveler instead of Tighnari, and Kazuha for his Elemental Mastery and Swirling capabilities.

In that sense, it’s not the Electro element that needed a buff but its reactions. Before Dendro, Electro only had three possible reactions: Overload, Superconduct, and Electro-Charged. Overload had smaller damage multipliers and launched smaller enemies, which was inconvenient for consistently triggering reactions. Superconduct mostly benefited Physical damage-dealers like Eula, so Electro still wasn’t quite the star of the show.

Electro-Charge comps, also known as Taser comps, were the most popular, but even they have lower viability than other teams. Electro-Charge deals Electro DMG as long as the Electro status stays active, but it’s more difficult to calculate than the 1.5 to 2.0 damage multiplier from Melt and Vape reactions.

Genshin Impact only has three Dendro characters so far: Tighnari, Collei, and Dendro Traveler. Collei and Dendro Traveler can both apply off-field Dendro DMG to enemies, while Tighnari works more as a Dendro ranged DPS. I expect that the meta will shift even more as new Dendro characters and those based around Dendro reactions like Nilou debut in the later updates.

Genshin Impact is available for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, iOS, and Android.

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