In Genshin Impact, the central aspect of the gameplay is the characters that you collect and do battle with. According to the Genshin Impact metagame, the roles are typically filled by one Main DPS, two Sub-DPS, and one Support for a total of 4 Characters.
This balance of 4 characters creates a huge array of possible combinations. However, it is the Main DPS Character who will be your primary damage dealer. Here, we will be going over what makes a character a Main DPS, and their general use and builds.
For more details on Genshin Impact Characters and how to improve them, check out our Genshin Impact Characters Guide.
Features of Main DPS Characters in Genshin Impact
Any character in Genshin Impact has the capacity to serve as a DPS. However, there are characters inherently better suited to the Genshin Impact Main DPS role than others. Indeed, there are 4 key things you will be looking for in a Main DPS:
- Critical Special Stat
- DPS Skills
- DPS Bursts
We will now look at each of these 3 things in more detail.
Critical Special Stat
One way to know if a character suits a Main DPS role, is by looking at their Ascension Special Stat. This is the stat that a Genshin Impact Character gets as a bonus once they ascend to at least phase 2.
Typically, the most popular Special Stat for Main DPS Characters in Genshin Impact is either;
- Critical Damage; or
- Critical Rate
Critical Stats help to produce massive amounts of damage, and Main DPS builds always aim for a balance of the two. A character, therefore, getting about a 20% bonus to their Crit Rate or a 30% bonus to their Crit Damage helps in building those characters into a DPS Main.
There are many Genshin Impact Characters that make a great Main DPS due to scoring well in these 2 critical stats. Some examples of these Main DPS characters include the below:
- Critical Damage: Ayaka (Cryo), Ayato (Hydro), Eula (Cryo), Ganyu (Cryo), Hu Tao (Pyro), Keqing (Electro)
- Critical Rate: Diluc (Pyro), Itto (Geo), Xiao (Anemo), Yoimiya (Pyro)
Non Critical Stat Main DPS Characters
In addition to the critical stats, there are a few other special stats that can suit a Main DPS. These include any stats which boost Elemental or Physical damage or Attack. These Main DPS Characters will generally then need to get increases to their critical stats from weapons and artifacts.
The exception to this is Noelle who is one of the Best Free-to-play Main DPS Genshin Impact Characters. Noelle’s special stat is Defense, but this actually counts as damage scaling for her elemental burst.
However, in general, if a character has Elemental Mastery, Energy Recharge, HP, or Healing Bonus, they are more suited for either a Genshin Impact Sub-DPS Character or Support position. In addition, just because a character has Critical Damage or Critical Rate as their Special Stat, that doesn’t mean they have to serve in the Main DPS role.
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Main DPS Offensive Skills and Bursts
No matter the special stat, a Genshin Impact Main DPS Character usually has their Skill and Burst focused on their own damage-dealing output.
Skills tend to either deal straight damage or build stacks to increase the Main DPS’s damage/energy. Bursts do a form of burst damage, occasionally helping boost other party members, or infuse the Main DPS with their element to deal more damage.
Main DPS Skills in Genshin Impact
One way for a skill to assist a Main DPS Character in Genshin Impact is by increasing the pure damage output of the character. This is often done by a skill creating multiple charges of attacks.
For example, Xiao’s skill ‘Lemniscatic Wind Cycling’ at C0 can unleash up to 2 charges of Anemo Damage. Xiao also has a passive talent that gives subsequent uses of the skill increased damage. This skill can also reposition Xiao in order to avoid enemies while in combat.
Another way for a Skill to assist the Main DPS in applying damage is to change the damage type. Doing this allows certain artifacts to power up the Main DPS, but also for them to get through enemy resistances easier. Characters like Hu Tao and Ayato both utilize their skills to give them Pyro and Hydro respectfully.
As for Main DPS Skills using stacks, Arataki Itto inherently gains stacks of Superlative Superstrength (SSS) from hitting enemies with his Normal attack. He uses these stacks to increase damage on his charged attacks without consuming stamina for a time.
With Itto’s Skill ‘Masatsu Zetsugi: Akaushi Burst!’ he brings out a companion that grants bonus stacks, keeping damage output higher longer.
However, the effect of stacks varies from character to character. For example, Razor’s stacks increase his energy recharge, Yanfei’s decreases her stamina consumption, and Eula’s gives resistance to interruption and defense.
Main DPS Bursts
For Spiral Abyss and most bosses, the meta favors inflicting as much damage as possible for speedrunning. Bursts can be particularly useful in these scenarios. Main DPS characters tend to have one of three variants:
- A giant instance of damage.
- An Area of Effect to inflict damage.
- A major infusion to their normal attacks.
A popular Main DPS Character in Genshin Impact that has huge instances of Burst damage, is Eula Lawerence. Eula’s burst deals a massive amount of Cryo, and then after some time another instance of huge physical damage occurs.
Area of Effect bursts on Main DPS characters are more varied. Generally, though, they consist of large areas of continuous damage with an additional effect also occurring that is in keeping with their playstyle.
For Ganyu, her Area of Effect rains Cryo damage whilst also increasing Cryo damage at the same time. Ayato’s Area of Effect does Hydro damage and increases the damage of normal attacks at the same time.
The last category of Main DPS Bursts is Major Infusion Bursts. This is where the character will gain an infusion of their element. This infusion usually also scales off of another stat, or provides an additional bonus method of play.
My personal Main DPS Xiao is a great example of this. Not only does Xiao get his normal and charged attacks infused with Anemo, but he also gets increased jump and an area of effect whenever he plunges.
Weapons and Artifacts for Main DPS Characters
Just as important as finding a Main DPS to head a party, is finding a weapon and artifact combination that helps bring up the character’s stats. Both of these aspects of the game help to further improve a Genshin Impact Main DPS Character’s damage output.
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Main DPS Weapons
Whether it is a premium five-star weapon or a free-to-play friendly crafted weapon, all popular Main DPS weapons have one thing in common far. Their main stat is always either Critical Rate/Damage, Attack, or a Damage Bonus stat.
This follows the logic of the ascension stat before, where increasing the Critical stats helps enhance damage output. Likewise, increasing Attack also accomplishes this goal. With higher a attack stat the initial damage numbers also increase.
The only weapon on a popular Main DPS that isn’t a Critical Stat or Attack is ‘Song of Broken Pines’ which gives a Physical Damage Bonus. This weapon is the signature of Eula who along with Cryo, also deals massive amounts of Physical Damage.
All of these weapons also contain a relevant sub-stat within the passive. Most of the time this is a straight stat bonus for Attack, Elemental Damage, or in niche cases Defense or HP. However, some weapon sub-stats require the character to either constantly attack, or lower another stat in exchange.
Lastly, many of the more premium options tend to be specifically made for a specific Genshin Impact Main DPS. We’ve mentioned Eula, but other examples are Hu Tao and the Staff of Homa both caring about having low HP, and Itto with Redhorn Stonethresher caring about Normal and Charged attacks.
Main DPS Artifact Sets
In the grand scheme of things, unless you have the time and possible funds to grind infinitely, so long as you provide well-leveled artifacts you’ll be fine. However for Main DPS characters, making sure that certain pieces have the right stats, or provide the right set bonus, is imperative for optimization.
The main stats for Main DPS artifacts is fairly simple. Of course, the Flower and the Plume are always the same stat, but the other three pieces follow the same trend with very few exceptions.
In an optimal build, the Goblet is always whatever damage type the character cares most for, and the Circlet is one of the two Critical stats. The Sands while most of the time is Attack, in some cases Defense (for Itto and Noelle) or HP (for Hu Tao) are more important.
The sub-stats follow the same wants and needs, wanting to find pieces that provide more of all the stats that matter most. Attack Percentage, the Crit Stats, and whatever other stat the Main DPS cares about. This will end up being the reason to grind so much for the perfect stat distribution.
Finally, the 2-set and 4-set bonuses are the final pieces of the puzzle for optimizing your Main DPS Character. For 2-set bonuses, it is good to grab a combo of Attack Bonus and one of the character’s relevant Damage types.
4-set bonuses are where it gets interesting. The best way to go with a Main DPS character is to grab a 4-piece of their element. These effects either improve the damage of various elemental reactions or provide an ability closely related to the element.
As the game continues to progress, more complicated artifacts that help out a certain Main DPS will be released. None is a better example than Xiao recently getting a new artifact set.
Indeed, with update 2.6 and the release of the Chasm, a new artifact set called Vermillion Hereafter was released. This set was tailored for Xiao, increasing his attack after his burst, and further increasing it when Xiao loses health. This amounts to a max potential of 56% attack increase by capitalizing on Xiao’s burst.
Main DPS In Perspective
To summarize, Main DPS Characters in Genshin Impact are ones that focus purely on their own damage output. Through increases in Critical Stats, Attack, Elemental Damage, and other relevant stats, they’ll output as much damage as possible.
A final note is that all the Main DPS characters function and play in different ways. Be sure to try out any unit in their trials during their banner runs to feel how the character plays. From fast-paced polearms to hard-hitting claymores, there is a Main DPS suited for every player.
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