Fontaine couldn’t come anytime sooner. The 4.0 patch in Genshin Impact will be the biggest we’ll get this year, introducing a whole new region with its own characters, puzzles, items, quests, and much more. But new pieces of land are not the only attraction here, as HoYoverse has disclosed more of the many QoL updates we’ll be getting here and there.
In their newest Developer Discussion post, we had another preview of the upcoming version. Some of the changes were already expected, but having an official confirmation is always exciting, especially when it’s about one of the game’s most dreadful systems: Artifacts.
Easier Management, Easier Grinding, Easier Equipment
If you clicked expecting “better Artifact rates confirmed,” I’m sorry to disappoint you, but bear with me. Farming and leveling will still be a pain, but the overall experience is getting slightly better. Starting from 4.0, players can now hold up to 1800 Artifacts instead of 1500. Not only that, but all sets introduced from 1.4 to 2.8 will now be available in Mystic Offering.
More artifact slots are a much-needed change, as some players (myself included) are constantly reaching the current limit while farming. This is being addressed in various ways, as there are now more Set options to create with your spare 5-star pieces. I’m finally free from the Emblem set domain!
If you still find it hard to manage your space, more breaking options are being added, and they also spoke about a “plan to allow Travelers to equip Artifacts as soon as possible.” This could be either the long-requested Equipment Set feature (useful for characters that can use multiple Artifact builds) or a similar system to Honkai: Star Rail’s “Recommended” auto-equip option, which is far from ideal but a good start.
Instant Traveling is The Way (And New Weapons Too!)
General functions are also being added in the update, with the most impactful of them being definitely the addition of a new Teleport Waypoint to the Realm of Farakhkert in Sumeru, unlocked automatically once you complete Mondstadt’s Archon Quests. This will let you visit both Sumeru and Fontaine automatically without going over 30 hours of quests beforehand!
You still need to finish all of the previous quests to enjoy Fontaine’s story (ending in Archon Quest Chapter III: Act VI “Caribert.”), but at least you can now explore the region, grab a few teleports, gather materials and come back later when you catch up.
Quest requirement has always been a huge barrier for newer players who got a cool character from the most recent region but are locked away from their ascension materials due to progression. Inazuma characters will still have the same issues, but nothing stops them from adding a similar Teleport to the region in the future.
Aside from that, the other big change is the introduction of five new Battle Pass weapons. The initial weapons will still be there, and you can now choose from a full selection of 10 powerful, exclusive instruments of destruction in every update you get the BP. We had a few leaks on those weapons, and they seemed to be pretty good!
Other changes include the multi-layered map, present in certain Sumeru areas, being added to the rest of the game, as well as a spectator mode for TCG and a gyroscope function for controllers, but we’ll probably get a lot more as-of-yet undocumented changes. That’s how big patches usually go.
Lastly, they mentioned plans to implement a different Daily Commission system. Some have speculated that Star Rail’s Daily Training Activity will be the basis for that. In other words, even easier dailies and more flexibility on what you’ll need to do every day instead of doing the same mini-quests over and over.
I’m definitely excited for Fortaine, and I have my hopes up in this patch. Hoyoverse has been improving their games considerably as of late, and there’s no doubt the new region will be another big step into the overall experience. The story seems quite promising too, so let’s hope they don’t screw this up somehow!