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Is Genshin Impact Really Free to Play on All Platforms?

Hi friend! If you‘ve heard about the wildly popular Genshin Impact game, you may be wondering – is it actually free to play across all devices?

The short answer is yes, Genshin Impact is 100% free on mobile, PC, and PlayStation! You can download and play the full adventure without spending a penny. I‘ll explain more about how the game stays profitable while being free, and dive into the complete platform availability below.

See, Genshin Impact uses a "gacha-style" monetization system. This means the core game is free-to-play, but offers optional bonuses and upgrades you can purchase along your journey. We‘ll break down exactly how this works shortly!

First, let‘s look at all the platforms where you can download Genshin Impact for free right now:

Current Platform Availability

PlatformRelease Date
iOSSeptember 28, 2020
AndroidSeptember 28, 2020
Windows PCSeptember 28, 2020
PlayStation 4September 28, 2020
PlayStation 5April 28, 2021

As you can see, Genshin Impact launched simultaneously on mobile, PC, and PlayStation 4 back in September 2020.

The PlayStation 5 received an upgraded version in April 2021 with enhanced 4K graphics. But importantly, the core free-to-play experience remains exactly the same.

Now let‘s talk about the…

Nintendo Switch Version

If you‘re a Switch owner, you might be wondering: "When is Genshin Impact coming to Nintendo Switch?"

Well, we unfortunately don‘t have an exact release date yet.

The developer miHoYo has confirmed that a Switch port is still in development. But it‘s taking time to optimize given the Switch‘s lower hardware capabilities compared to other platforms.

The wait has definitely been longer than expected – miHoYo initially announced the Switch version way back in 2020. But fear not, they‘ve reassured fans it is still coming!

So while you sadly can‘t play Genshin on Switch just yet, it should be available for free once released. MiHoYo knows there is huge demand from Nintendo fans, so progress is still ongoing.

Now, onto the bigger question…

Can You Really Play for Free?

I know what you may be thinking:

"Sure, the game says it‘s free…but is that just a gimmick to get you hooked before forcing you to pay?"

This concern makes total sense. Far too many so-called "free" games end up nearly requiring purchases to progress at a reasonable pace.

Well I‘m happy to tell you Genshin Impact is not one of those games!

While extra purchases are available, you can easily enjoy hundreds of hours exploring its massive open world, engaging in quests, and unraveling its story without spending a single cent.

Don‘t just take my word for it. According to leading gaming site IGN:

"You can absolutely play Genshin Impact for free, and you won’t really ever hit a progression wall without paying."

And popular YouTube channel GamerBraves further confirms:

"I’m now over 175 hours into Genshin Impact and haven’t spent anything. You really don’t need to."

So rest assured, Genshin Impact truly delivers on its free-to-play promise. You‘ll have access to the same vast world and content updates as paying players!

Now let‘s examine why the game is structured this way…

Genshin Impact‘s Gacha-Style Monetization

You‘re likely wondering:

"If the game is 100% free, how do they make any money?"

Excellent question! The secret lies in optional in-game purchases through "gacha" mechanics.

What is Gacha?

Gacha refers to an increasingly popular form of monetization in free games. Rather than charge an upfront cost, players can optionally pay for a chance at randomized rewards and bonuses.

Some common gacha elements in Genshin Impact include:

  • Wishes: Random character & item loot boxes
  • Genesis Crystals: Premium currency bought with real money
  • Battle Pass: Reward tiers unlocked through play time

Importantly, while these optional paid bonuses can enhance your experience, they are not at all necessary for progression.

A Win-Win Situation

This gacha structure creates a win-win proposition:

  • Players enjoy full free access to a premium game.
  • Developers receive ongoing revenue from engaged fans.

Rather than force payment, it empowers different levels of investment. This helps explain Genshin Impact‘s runaway success, with over $3 billion in mobile revenue alone.

Is Genshin Impact a Big Time Commitment?

Since the game is free, you may wonder what type of time investment is required.

The main story alone offers 30+ hours of gameplay. And that expands to over 100 hours including side quests!

Here‘s a quick overview of how long it takes to experience everything Genshin has to offer:

Gameplay TypeHours to Complete
Main story30-40 hours
Main + Extra quests80-100 hours
100% Completion300+ hours

As you can see, you can sink hundreds of enjoyable hours into exploring and completing activities without ever hitting a paywall.

And with frequent content updates, the adventure keeps growing over time!

Is Genshin Impact Suitable for Kids?

Given its adorable characters and colorful fantasy world, you may be wondering if Genshin Impact is kid-friendly.

The game earned a PEGI age rating of 12+ due to some cartoon violence and mild scary themes.

Most of the combat is very tame, with monsters disappearing in puffs of smoke rather than bloody violence. There are no mature language or sexual themes either.

So based on the rating, if you have kids age 12 and up they should be fine playing Genshin Impact.

For children under 12, parental guidance is still recommended. But many enthusiastically enjoy the game‘s lighthearted adventure!

Final Verdict: Absolutely Worth Playing for Free!

After analyzing all aspects thoroughly, I can wholeheartedly recommend diving into Genshin Impact‘s captivating world for zero dollars upfront.

Its unique blend of open-world exploration, dynamic real-time combat, and anime aesthetic provide an experience like no other.

Combined with the ability to play 100% free across mobile, PC, and PlayStation, there is simply no reason not to give it a try!

The only potential catch is the frustration of waiting indefinitely for that Switch port. But once it finally arrives, Nintendo fans can join the fun too.

So in summary:

  • Yes, Genshin Impact is completely free-to-play on all current platforms.
  • You can play for hundreds of hours without spending money.
  • The unique gacha monetization is player-friendly while funding ongoing development.
  • With frequent updates and no paywalls, it‘s absolutely worth playing for free now rather than waiting!

Let me know if you have any other questions! I hope you enjoy embarking on your own grand tale in Teyvat.



Michael Reddy is a tech enthusiast, entertainment buff, and avid traveler who loves exploring Linux and sharing unique insights with readers.