Hey friend! If you‘ve heard about the incredibly popular game Genshin Impact and wondered "is Genshin totally free?" – the answer is yes, absolutely!
You can download and play through the entire massive world of Genshin Impact without ever spending a penny. I‘ll walk you through exactly what you can access for free in Genshin and if you ever need to pay for progression and power.
Downloading Genshin is 100% Free
Let‘s start with the basics – getting the game in the first place. You can download Genshin Impact totally free from these places:
- PC: Directly from the Genshin Impact website or the Epic Games Store
- Mobile: Google Play Store or Apple App Store
- PlayStation: Directly from the PS Store on PS4 and PS5
The developers miHoYo have chosen to make their game completely free to play from the start, which is rare for a huge open-world RPG like Genshin. So you can instantly download and jump into the world of Teyvat at no cost!
Once downloaded, you have unlimited access to explore the seven nations, take on quests with fun characters, and progress through the massive main story arc. There is no paywall or energy system that stops you from playing.
And the game is constantly updated with new content and nations for all players regardless of spending. So you‘ll get to experience regular expansions like new characters, quests, environments, and seasonal events without paying a thing!
All Core Gameplay Completely Free
Not only can you download and access Genshin for free, but all of the main gameplay, progression, and content is fully available without spending money.
The game provides you a roster of free characters that can be upgraded to beat all the campaigns and bosses. Here are some top free characters you‘ll obtain over time:
- The Traveler – As the main character, you can swap between Geo, Anemo, Electro elements and fill any team role
- Amber – An archer with a taunt ability that draws enemy aggro
- Kaeya – A sword fighter with icy abilities that freeze and damage enemies
- Lisa – A mage with powerful lightning-based attacks and crowd control
- Noelle – A defense-focused fighter that heals and shields your party
- Barbara – A dedicated healer that keeps your party alive during tough fights
- Xiangling – A polearm user with fiery Pyro attacks and abilities
With just these free characters and weapons you find exploring, you can beat any boss, pass the challenging Spiral Abyss domains, and clear all of the story quests. I‘ve been playing for over a year as completely free-to-play and have 36 starred the Spiral Abyss using just free/earned characters!
So you absolutely can access all of the main content without paying if you focus on upgrading free characters strategically. And with regular game updates, you‘ll get more free characters added over time too!
Paying Only Speeds Up Progression
While Genshin Impact‘s core content is 100% free, you do have the option to pay for certain bonuses and advantages:
- Battle Pass – Provides upgrade materials, weapons, gems, etc for completing tasks
- Blessing of the Welkin Moon – Daily gems you can use to summon new characters
- Genesis Crystals – Premium currency used to "wish" for rare characters and weapons
However, all of these paying options are completely optional and only offer progression shortcuts rather than locking away content. Here are the main benefits:
Obtaining new characters and weapons faster – You can spend money to acquire more wishes and have higher chances for rare 5-star drops. As a free player you get a steady trickle of free gems, while paying allows you to wish a lot more often.
Faster upgrade leveling – The Battle Pass provides materials that let you level up characters quicker. Free players have to grind these out through quests and exploration.
Unique cosmetics – Some outfits and aesthetics can only be purchased with real money instead of in-game currency. But these are purely decorative.
So in summary – paying money can fast track certain parts of progression like obtaining characters and leveling them up. But a strategic free player can keep pace reasonably well and experience all the same content.
Costs of Paying for Progression Shortcuts
For players that do choose to pay in Genshin Impact, how much does it typically cost to get shortcuts? Here are estimates for common paid bonuses:
- Welkin Moon (Daily Gems)
- $5 USD per month
- Provides 2700 paid gems over 30 days
- Roughly 20 wishes per month
- Battle Pass (Upgrade Materials)
- $10 USD per version update
- Provides upgrade materials, gems, weapons
- Unlocks as you complete daily/weekly tasks
- Genesis Crystals (Converts to Wishes)
- $100 USD gets 14700 crystals
- 14700 crystals = 1470 wishes
- Bonus first purchase rewards
For consistent bonuses, most paying players get the Welkin Moon monthly subscription and the Battle Pass each version, costing around $15 per month.
Plus periodic crystal purchases when you want to wish on limited character event banners. Here‘s how much paid crystals typically cost for unlocking rare characters:
- 5-star character – Avg 28,800 gems per banner = ~$300
- 5-star weapon – Avg 24,000 gems per banner = ~$240
So while paying can provide nice progression shortcuts, obtaining the rarest drops costs hundreds per banner. Completely optional for enjoying the game!
Genshin Isn‘t Pay-to-Win
One common concern around Genshin‘s monetization model is whether the game becomes "pay-to-win" – meaning spending gives you such a leg up that free players can‘t compete.
However, Genshin manages to avoid being pay-to-win in multiple ways:
- You can‘t directly buy power – payments only give randomized chances at characters via wishing
- Duplicate characters only provide minor boosts to constellations
- Strategic free characters actually enable all content, even competitive modes like Spiral Abyss
- While 5-stars are strong, many free 4-stars remain viable endgame
- Leveling up characters matters far more than just having rare characters
Because you have to build up characters regardless of if they‘re paid or free, spending doesn‘t ruin game balance. For example, a $5000 account could still lose to a skilled free player in competitive modes.
While payments provide more options and progression shortcuts, they don‘t block free players from competing or beating all PvE content. You fully control your progression speed and strategy.
Genshin Sets a New Bar for Free-to-Play Friendliness
Given Genshin Impact‘s insane production values and depth of content, you may worry it‘s designed to squeeze paying players dry. But surprisingly, Genshin sets a new standard for free-to-play friendliness:
- No content or areas are locked behind payments. You can access everything free.
- You‘re given enough free gems from events, quests, exploration to wish regularly as a free player.
- Dupes only provide slight boosts to constellations rather than make characters unusable at C0.
- Therates for 5-star characters are low. But you‘re guaranteed one within 90 wishes with the pity system.
- 4-star characters are regularly given out for free and are viable endgame. You don‘t need 5-stars.
- Events reward tons of upgrade materials, weapons, characters, gems. So free players keep up with paid.
Almost all free-to-play games have extensive paywalls or terrible rates for rare drops. But Genshin makes steady progress reasonable for non-spenders without being punitive.
You absolutely can enjoy the full breadth and depth of Genshin Impact without spending a dime. It just requires more patience and focusing resources on upgrading what you have.
The developers miHoYo struck an excellent balance – lowering the barrier to entry while still incentivizing payments. And the results speak for themselves, with Genshin earning billions in revenue despite being so free-to-play friendly.
The Verdict: Genshin Impact is Completely Free-to-Play
After reviewing all the evidence, the final verdict is clear: Yes, Genshin Impact is 100% free-to-play!
You can download Genshin and access the entire massive world, story quests, characters, events, and endgame content without ever spending money. Payments only provide optional shortcuts.
Genshin sets a new gold standard for free-to-play friendliness in large RPGs. If you have any interest in exploring an anime-inspired fantasy world filled with adventures, it‘s absolutely worth trying Genshin Impact as a free player.
Just focus on slowly upgrading the free characters the game provides, and you‘ll steadily unlock new areas and overcome challenges without paying a thing. The quality and depth of content coupled with smart monetization makes Genshin one of the fairest free games out there.
So hopefully this deep dive has clearly answered your question "is Genshin totally free?" Yup, 100% free-to-play and an amazing game worth trying because of it! Let me know if you have any other Genshin-related questions!