Genshin Impact Has an Accessibility Problem

Last Updated on August 30, 2022

I’m someone who plays Genshin Impact in small bursts – I play for a bit, stop for a few months, then repeat – purely because I am not physically able to play as often as most players can.

Map Exploration and Traversal

Genshin Impact doesn’t feel as accessible as it should be. Exploring and map traversal can get slow and tiresome for some less abled gamers. There is no option for auto running across the map, whereas some games like Guild Wars 2 and Final Fantasy XIV do. Even battle royale games like PUBG and Fortnite have that option. There’s no reason why I should have to keep pressing down a button to keep moving forward. Let me have a toggle option. In Final Fantasy XIV, I can just press R on the keyboard and my character automatically moves forward. What’s the reason Genshin can’t implement something similar, particularly to ease physical strain on players?

Tower of Fantasy‘s accessibility is superior in two specific aspects: map traversal and auto-battle in some farming domains. Tower of Fantasy‘s map traversal has multiple things Genshin doesn’t: mounts, a jetpack (that functions as both a launcher and glider), and grapple (called cybernetic arm in game). You can mention Genshin‘s new Sumeru update having these specific points on the map that function similarly to grapples. But it’s still incredibly restrictive because it is only in certain areas, it doesn’t take you very far, you can’t use it at will or anywhere you want, and it’s only in Sumeru.

Climbing still feels somewhat janky in Genshin and again, constantly pressing down on a joystick or W button is painful. Sprinting takes up no stamina in Tower of Fantasy while it does in Genshin Impact. But you don’t need to be sprinting much in Tower of Fantasy thanks to mounts being an option. If you think “Genshin isn’t a MMO, it doesn’t need mounts”, many single player RPGs have mounts, including Skyrim, The Witcher, and Breath of the Wild (which many people note Genshin has taken some inspiration from). Further, Genshin‘s map is continuously expanding, so it wouldn’t hurt to add something like mounts. Yes, waypoints are a thing for fast travel. But obviously, you need to get there to activate them in the first place. Many other RPGs have fast travel, but still have many other ways of map traversal.

Auto Battle

Tower of Fantasy has multiple domains, both single player and co op, for farming that allow for auto battle. This allows for the player to just sit back while the AI takes control of wiping out enemy mobs and collecting resources. In the open world, where the majority of the game takes place, there is no auto. But that is fine, considering the gameplay is otherwise accessible as mentioned previously with regards to map traversal. I don’t see why Genshin couldn’t similarly have a restrictive auto option, even if it’s only for certain game modes.

Considering Tower of Fantasy has an auto battle option in certain modes, saying “Genshin is an action RPG so it can’t have auto battle” doesn’t really work. Many single player RPGs have some form of auto battle, from the Tales of series to NieR. The mobile gacha game My Hero Academia: The Strongest Hero is an action RPG with similar combat elements to Genshin and it has an auto option in most game modes. I previously published a short piece titled The Necessity of Auto Battle that goes over the arguments some people may have regarding this subject. While not having auto battle isn’t the end of the world, I see no reason why Hoyoverse couldn’t implement some form of it to literally take a physical load off players who need it. Even restricting auto battle in Genshin to single player mode only so it doesn’t mess with people helping you in co op would still be an improvement.

Community Discussion is Important

I enjoy playing Genshin while I can. But that’s just it, I can’t as often as I would like. Including various optional ways (again I stress optional) of helping out players only improves the game, not weaken it. There have been very loud discussions among Genshin Impact players about many other aspects of the game people find problematic regarding character design and lore. But accessibility of the game itself has not been discussed on a large scale, and it really should be.

Copy link