Looking for a Genshin Impact Shenhe build? Though the five-star Cryo character hasn't been released yet at the time of writing, we have a good idea of what her toolkit includes. So it isn't too hard to piece how she'll function in terms of the best artifacts and weapons. Just as Gorou was a Geo support character, Shenhe opens the door for mono-Cryo parties, boosting Cryo damage with her Icy Quill effect while reducing Cryo and Physical resistance with her Divine Maiden's Deliverance burst. So it’s perfect timing for Eula and Ganyu enthusiasts out there.
Once Shenhe unlocks her Spirit Communion passive, you can even alter the type of support she offers depending on how you use her skill. Pressing it strengthens elemental skills and bursts while holding it grants a boost to normal, charged, and plunging attacks, meaning you can tailor her buffs towards whatever character or ability is next in your plan of attack.
Best of all? The Cryo damage buff provided by the Icy Quill effect scales with Shenhe's attack, so you can build her as a damage-dealer, and her abilities will still benefit from the same buffs as the rest of the party. Throw in Yun Jin's normal attack buffs, and we've got some pretty powerful characters arriving in version 2.4.
In this Genshin Impact Shenhe build guide, I'll run through our best theory-crafted build, as well as a decent free-to-play build also.
The best Genshin Impact Shenhe build
Since the Cryo damage buff provided by Shenhe's Icy Quill effect scales with her attack, and attack is an easy stat to build, there's a lot you can do with the five-star polearm-wielder. You could use artifact sets to boost attacks: Gladiator's Finale, Brave Heart, or Shimenawa's Reminiscence. For our build, however, we tried to push Shenhe towards becoming both a hybrid support and a damage dealer:
- Weapon: Calamity Queller
- Artifact: (2) Blizzard Strayer, (2) Noblesse Oblige
The first thing to say is that if you're going with this build, you'll need to prioritize the attack stat with artifacts if you still want to get lots of value out of the Icy Quill Cryo damage boost. As mentioned, you can use artifact sets to boost attack, but it seems like a waste when it can be provided through artifact and weapon substats, freeing up artifact set abilities to buff Shenhe's other damage outputs like Cryo and burst.
If you're using Calamity Queller, it would also be a waste not to use Shenhe to deal damage. This five-star polearm boosts attack as a substat, as well as all elemental damage by 12 percent. When you use an elemental skill, you'll gain Consummation for 20 seconds, buffing attack by 3.2 percent every second up to a max of six. Similar to the Husk of Opulent Dreams artifact set or the Alley Hunter bow, the attack increase is doubled when the character is off the field.
As you'd imagine, this would allow Shenhe to tap her skill for the t10-second burst buff, jump off-field, then return after six seconds to cast her burst with a further 38 percent attack boost. She could then hit her skill again, and the Icy Quill Cryo damage buff would scale even further with her increased attack. In terms of artifacts to complement her damage-dealing, two pieces of Noblesse Oblige would boost her burst by 20 percent, while two pieces of Blizzard Strayer would increase her Cryo damage by 15 percent.
Genshin Impact Shenhe F2P build
Unfortunately, there aren't many three-star weapons that work especially well for Shenhe, but as she scales with attack, it should still be easy to get value out of her.
- Weapon: Halberd or Wavebreaker's Fin
- Artifact: Gladiator's Finale (2) Brave Heart (2)
Halberd is the best three-star polearm for Shenhe since it offers attack as a substat. It also causes normal attacks to deal an additional 160 percent damage every 10 seconds. In terms of four-star polearms, there are some far better choices. Wavebreaker's Fin, for example, boosts attack, but also increases elemental burst damage by 0.12 percent for every point of your party's combined energy capacity, meaning the overall cost of your party's bursts.
This allows you to bring Cryo characters with expensive bursts, like Ayaka, who can use Shenhe's Icy Quill effect to strengthen them while also adding a little power to Shenhe's own burst. You should also build energy recharge to a decent level so Shenhe can use her burst often, especially as its Cryo resistance reduction is the perfect setup for other Cryo bursts.
The best free four-star polearm for Shenhe as a support is probably The Catch. It boosts energy recharge as a substat but also increases burst damage by 16 percent and burst crit rate by 6 percent. You can get it for free from the Inazuma fishing association, along with the Ako's Sake Vessels that are required to refine it and make it stronger. As ever, the Favonius Lance is also a trusty support polearm, provided you build crit rate to some extent, so it can provide those energy particles.
We went pure attack artifacts here since it means you don’t have to rely as much on fiddly substats and artifact farming, and both Gladiator’s Finale and Brave Heart are easy to get. You can also use two pieces of Shimenawa’s Reminiscence to get the same 18 percent attack buff that both of these sets offer.
And those are our best theory-crafted Genshin Impact Shenhe builds. May Shenhe wanters be Shenhe havers.