Genshin Impact events keep getting better – I just wish some of them were permanent

Genshin Impact has added dozens of characters and many regions in the 18 months or so since launch, but its pinnacle content hasn’t changed much at all. The hardest recurring challenge in the game is still the Spiral Abyss dungeon, and while it has gotten noticeably harder over time with the introduction of new enemies, its rewards and rules haven’t meaningfully evolved. The Abyss is Genshin’s only true end game content, and that’s because it’s the only permanent combat gauntlet of its kind. But if we count the temporary events that Genshin regularly cycles through, it’s up to its eyeballs in fun fights – and now, more than ever, I desperately wish some of them would stick around. 

Like a lot of players, I just polished off the new Vibro-Crystal Research event, which is a foil of sorts to the Spiral Abyss. You’re still building two teams of four characters to take on timed waves of enemies, but where the Abyss challenges players to kill a static group of enemies within graded time thresholds, the goal with Vibro-Crystal Research is to kill as many things as possible before time runs out. This setup gives you more room to flex the strength of your characters, and I thoroughly enjoyed doubling, tripling, or even quadrupling the high score necessary to obtain all of the event’s rewards. Likewise, while the Abyss gives you random power-ups to choose from for each floor, each stage of Vibro-Crystal Research has fixed bonuses that you can build around by integrating specific elements into your party. This pushed me to try some unconventional teams, adding a wrinkle of strategy to the chaos happening on-screen. 

More than the Spiral Abyss 

Genshin Impact

(Image credit: Hoyoverse)

Vibro-Crystal Research is just another monster mash at the end of the day, but it was also a rare excuse to take the game seriously. I love how laid-back and comfy questing and exploring can be, but I ultimately play Genshin because it’s got fun combat. It’s a game centrally about acquiring and building characters, and for me the big payoff is putting the characters I love through their paces in difficult fights. There is a gardening-like satisfaction to seeing my beloved five-stars get stronger every week as I level their skills and improve their gear, but I don’t just want to see numbers go up; I want to flex that hard-earned strength in combat. 

I’m not asking for enormous Genshin Impact raids to come out tomorrow, bloody amazing as that would be

I want more content to measure my characters against, and Vibro-Crystal Research was the perfect playground. Sadly I’m all out of stages, and like many previous events, Vibro-Crystal Research will up and vanish soon. We’ll probably see it again in a few months, but for now it’s back to the Spiral Abyss – 20 minutes of end game content every two weeks. Excuse me while I polish the edge of my seat. 

I don’t know exactly why Hoyoverse insists on making Genshin’s best events so impermanent. I do understand there’s a fair design philosophy behind this approach. For starters, brief events like this seem like a great way to experiment with different mechanics. If things don’t work out, Hoyoverse can just take it out of the game to either iterate on it or move on. Limited-time events also give each patch its own flavor, and they give players another reason to log in and drive up the retention statistic that gacha games have all but enshrined. There may also be some technical goals or limitations – particularly storage constraints for the mobile version of the game – that prevent Hoyoverse from putting too many things in Genshin at once. To be fair, if every event had been permanent, Genshin would be a bloated mess at this point, and probably pretty offputting to new players. 

I don’t want every event to stay here forever. And I’m not asking for enormous Genshin Impact raids to come out tomorrow, bloody amazing as that would be. I just want more than the Spiral Abyss. If even one or two of Genshin’s many good events were added to the game as permanent, combat-focused challenges that gave out decent rewards, there’d be a lot more to do week to week. Those rewards could soften the resource grind that players understandably continue to criticize, and the addition of another meaty challenge would further motivate people like me to keep grinding to improve their characters. Most importantly, it’d be fun. 

Too many events to choose from  

Genshin Impact

(Image credit: Hoyoverse)

It’s not like Genshin is short on end game-worthy events. Vibro-Crystal Research was the flavor of the month, but it’s only the latest in a long line of events that I want to keep playing. Another fan-favorite is Hyakunin Ikki, which lets you build and quickly swap between multiple teams of just two characters. This totally changes the way you build your compositions and think about rotations, and lining up your duos to counter specific waves of enemies is hugely satisfying. 

If we go back a little further, we’ll find more transformative events like Labyrinth Warriors, which was so well-received that a non-trivial amount of players actually called for it to become a permanent thing. Labyrinth Warriors was basically a rogue-like action game within an action game. You’d explore procedurally generated dungeons while clearing arena challenges to accumulate loot and buffs before a big boss fight at the end of each floor. It even had auxiliary progression! You could spend your event currency on bonuses that made future runs easier and more rewarding. It was like a bigger and better version of Battlefront: Misty Dungeon, an even more bite-sized event with much smaller floors, and I’m still eagerly waiting for its return.

Vibro-Crystal Research is just another monster mash at the end of the day, but it was also a rare excuse to take the game seriously

At this point, I’d even take a boss rush like the old Hypostatic Symphony or Legend of the Vagabond Sword. These tossed you into arenas with souped-up versions of world bosses like the elemental Hypostases and Inazuma’s Maguu Kenki, and I mean super souped-up. These things were a menace. A few un-fun modifiers made clearing them on max difficulty virtually impossible for anyone who hasn’t spent literally thousands of dollars on the game – you can get outta here with that “you can only use your skills once a minute” bullshit – but these events definitely had bite, and that’s what Genshin is missing right now. 

I’m sure Hoyoverse has some sort of plan to expand Genshin’s end game in the (hopefully near) future. My optimistic theory is that events like these have been mere testing grounds for a more ambitious challenge still to come. Whatever’s in the works, I hope it gets here soon, and I hope it makes good use of at least some of the countless great ideas that Genshin Impact’s events have left behind. 

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