September saw some pretty big games launch, but the surprisingly successful free-to-play Genshin Impact took the PlayStation Blog’s Players’ Choice award for the month in a “landslide victory.” Developed by Chinese studio miHoYo, Genshin Impact is a Breath of the Wild-inspired RPG, free-to-play featuring gacha mechanics (effectively gambling, loot boxes, or “pulls” seen in mobile games to get characters and gear). Released on September 28th, Genshin Impact made it in just under the wire to go up against games like Spellbreak and Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 and 2, which took the second and third place spots on the PS Blog Players’ Choice poll.
Additionally, Genshin Impact took just 12 days to generate over $100 million in revenue, the reported range for its development costs. The free-to-play title gets money through currency purchases used for “Wishes” in game, which randomly grant the player various characters and gear. Higher powered gear and characters can be quite rare through the Wish system, and there’s a hefty amount of luck involved in getting the things you actually want. The Washington Post’s Gene Park wrote about the dangerously addictive gambling mechanics, citing how easy it was to just effectively Wish away $130 in a matter of seconds.
Genshin Impact has now grossed over $100m in less than two weeks.
China, Japan, Korea and the US are top markets for the F2P game.
Without a doubt the most successful launch for an original IP from a Chinese dev. https://t.co/WjOOpLa66V
— Daniel Ahmad (@ZhugeEX) October 10, 2020
And yet, looking beyond the Wish system, Genshin Impact is still a strong RPG even without spending boatloads of money. Many people have easily gotten 30-50 hours out of it without spending a dime. While the draw to get a coveted five-star character or high-level weapon might sink its fangs into your wallet, there is a surprising amount of free content, with an engaging story and tactical gameplay centered around elemental damage types and how those combine and react together. And as the PlayStation Blog’s Players’ Choice game for September, it’s clearly found an audience. It’s also set to get even more updates in the coming months, expanding the free story and adding even more events, gear, and characters.
Are you playing Genshin Impact? Have you spent any money on Wishes? Tell us how your luck is going in the game in the comments below.