Gacha Mechanics

Gacha Mechanics

Genshin Impact is what is known as a gacha game, a genre of video games that are inspired from real life toy vending machines. Over the years, many mobile games were designed to capture this unique experience, which resulted in a loot box style game. This originated in Japan, where the physical gacha machines were present. For many players, Genshin Impact is the first gacha game experience they have played, which means that they are more prone to mistakes that veterans wouldn’t make. This is meant to inform those people who are new to this genre of video game.

Source: Gamespark
The most important thing to understand

What you must understand as the player is that Genshin Impact is essentially a casino where you spend Primogems to get a chance at winning a jackpot (e.g., 5-star characters). The golden rule is:

"Don't spend more money than you can afford "

As nice as it is to be able to get the character of your dreams, it is NOT worth hundreds( or even potentially thousands of dollars) to obtain. 

Next, I will be explaining the rates and how the pity system works.

Wish Rates

Once you step into the world of Teyvat, you will notice the wish feature.

If you click “details” on the bottom left of the screen, you will see the following rates as shown below: (Note that this changes from banner to banner)

"0.6% for a 5-star item is very low "

From this, you can see that the rate of pulling a 5-star, 4-star, and 3-star respectively are: 0.600%, 5.100%, and 94.300%. The second percent includes pity, which will be discussed later. The most important part about these rates is that they are worse than most gacha games. For example, Fate Grand Order is known for its low 5-star rate of 1%. HOWEVER, the pity system does make it a lot more forgiving for free-to-play players.

Pity System

The pity system allows for a player to get a high rarity character after a set amount of wishes should the player fail to summon one. Not all gachas do this, so Genshin Impact’s implementation of this system is a nice way to compensate the rates. Something important to keep in mind is that the pities are separate from banner type to banner type but carry over to the same type. For instance, the limited wish event for Venti will transfer to the next limited wish event.

"Pities apply to individual types of banners, not collective "

The pity system goes up to 90 wishes, where the player is guaranteed a 5-star character. However, there is an invisible soft pity that starts at wish number 76, where the rates for a 5-star character increases dramatically. Below is a table of 5-star rates by each wish. (Note that wish 90 is 100% a 5-star.)

Here is a very helpful infographic created by /u/ainhoawind visually showing how pity works.

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