You may remember last year when a Chinese game studio called miHoYo revealed its Breath of the Wild-like Genshin Impact to the world. Some took it as a cool twist on the incredible Nintendo game, and look forward to playing it. Some became very angry and smashed a PlayStation 4 because it looked so alarmingly similar to the Zelda Switch game.
Genshin Impact is a free-to-play, fantasy, open-world, action, role-playing game to be released for PS4, PC, and iOS on September 28. But will the development studio give those angry fans the ultimate slap in the face and release it on Switch to compete directly with the game its thought to have cloned?
While the exact release date of Genshin Impact for the Nintendo Switch is still unknown, it is noted by miHoYo that the game will indeed be coming to the platform at a later date. Since the game is free-to-play, there’s really no reason for players not to give it a try. If you’ve played hundreds or thousands of hours of Breath of the Wild, including the DLC, and still haven’t had enough, maybe Genshin Impact could scratch that itch.
The art style and gameplay are clearly heavily influenced, but when talking about a game that opened up new mechanics and ideas for open-world and Zelda games alike, why wouldn’t another studio copy that game? They’ve clearly done something right, and though we won’t know how good Genshin Impact is until it releases, free-to-play games that pique your curiosity are always worth a try.
Don’t dismiss this game as just a clone, however; the game is noted to have “strategic combat based on elemental interactions,” which from the new trailer looks like it could be a lot of fun. There is much that will remind you of Breath of the Wild, but Genshin Impact looks to stand on its own with some unique features compared to its massively successful counterpart.
miHoYo likely knew players would see trailers for this game and not give it a chance, so releasing it for free gives them a chance to get players hooked without assuming it is “just another clone.”