Genshin Impact Sumeru update comes right when I hit live service burnout

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Burnout eventually comes for everyone who plays live service games. Still, I didn’t realize that my relationship to Genshin Impact went in that direction until I stopped logging in every day. The summer event felt bloated with lackluster puzzles. The lore reveals never reached the epic heights that Enkanomiya or The Chasm once reached. The whitewashing controversy dampened my enthusiasm for the new character reveals. And farming artifacts is still the worst part of the game. As I scrolled through my list of uncompleted quests, I began to wonder if it was finally time to tackle my RPG backlog. I hear Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is good?

With all of this in mind, I’m trying to manage my expectations for genshin3.0 update. This patch adds the Sumeru region, new Dendro Element characters like Collei and Tighnari, and quality of life improvements that promise to make farming, fishing, and cooking less difficult. The trailer hints at some interesting lore about the region’s scholarly government and some sort of ideological divide over knowledge.

Unlike the marketing that led to Inazuma’s release, HoYoverse is more evasive about the main conflict in Sumeru history. Although I’m not sure if the secrecy really has the intended effect. Without knowing what’s dramatically at stake, it’s difficult to put my emotional investment into the new characters or world-building the developers have shown so far.

genshin Players are used to putting a lot of trust in developers despite having very little information. For the most part, the game rewarded that trust with well-written characters and unforgettable adventures, so I’d feel less ambivalent about how close HoYoverse is to its chest genshin‘s most recent event, Summer Fantasia, hadn’t been so lackluster.

Rather than providing us with world-specific lore or character quests that feel genuinely insightful, I felt shuttled around some generic-looking islands to solve uninspired puzzles (The only exception was Fischl’s Raven Castle. Those mirror puzzles were extremely good). And Summer Fantasia suffered from the same problem as the Irodori Festival: the event tried to focus on too many characters. It was fun watching rock star Xinyan deal with the wandering samurai Kazuha. But it’s hard to invest in their relationship when you’re not sure if they’ll ever interact again in the long run (it didn’t help that we met Childe during the last roguelike event and she hasn’t spoken to him since Has ). Normally I wouldn’t care. But in order to see those scenes, I had to complete a lot of dungeons in a specific order. If I’m forced to solve a lot of puzzles, the payoff must be worth it.

What genshin Really needs now is narrative focus. For the last few months we’ve been getting content that felt bloated to fill the schedule up to 3.0. I’m willing to surmise that part of this is due to the pandemic messing up HoYoverse’s schedule. But I’d prefer the developers leave us alone to create our rosters while they focus on making sure Sumeru is the best it can be. Even after completing the main story, players will revisit the region for seasonal events. If players are not sold on Sumeru now, it will be more difficult to sell them with content further down the pipeline.

Mondstadt and Liyue had the advantage of being the starting cities at launch. Inazuma was partially sustained by Cool Japan’s gentle power. Sumeru has a lot to prove, and its success or failure here could set the tone for another year of content.

Depending on your time zone, the Sumeru update will be released on August 23rd or 24th.

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