Anime games are about thirst, and Genshin Impact fans are among the thirstiest. They keep sending the game’s hottest characters to the top of Twitter’s trending topics with alarming frequency. Whether you’re one of these thirsty weebs, or you’re trying to understand why your friends can’t shut up about them: I’ve got you covered.
Here’s a list of the most interesting bachelors and bachelorettes in the game and my thoughts about why you might have a crush on them.
(There are no canon ages in Genshin Impact, so I have limited my list to characters who can drink alcohol or have professions.)
What this crush says about you: You’re a loyal person.
You know that Amber isn’t the most powerful archer or pyro user in the lineup, but you didn’t care and maxed out her friendship rank anyway. She’s a girl-next-door type whom you probably actually know in real life. When the drama in Teyvat becomes too much for you to deal with, she’s always got your back. And you’ve got hers.
Amber is impulsive and scatterbrained. If she had shoelaces, she would forget to tie them on her rush out the door. But she tries to improve herself every day, which makes her a down-to-earth person who you can actually relate to. You don’t need a magical power fantasy in a partner; you just need someone who is true to who they are.
What this crush says about you: You’re willing to overlook a lot of scruples if you’re having a good time.
We’ve all known a Kaeya at a bar. A guy starts lying his arse off about being thirty-fifth in line for the throne of some tiny principality, and you nod along because it’s fun to be an accomplice to such an outlandish boast. For a few moments, you even allow yourself to believe his imaginative lie for the sheer romance of it. That’s probably your relationship to Kaeya and his infectious charisma. He clearly cares about his coworkers in the Knights of Favonius, so you don’t think he’s a bad person. That makes the ocean-wide emotional distance that he puts between the two of you more bearable. You’re probably really good at putting off your own emotional needs, so you might survive waiting for Kaeya to eventually share all his secrets with you.
What this crush says about you: You want a woman to bully you gently, and you’re willing to be coy about it.
When Lisa threatens to punish someone for not returning a library book, you can’t help but think: “God, I wish that was me.” You grew to love Lisa for her scholarly brilliance, but your first impression was always, “this woman could smite me with a snap of her fingers.” Lisa is a lazy mage, but she is a highly calculating one. If you stand in her presence, then it means that you were explicitly allowed. The words that Lisa speaks, and the words that she does not speak — you want them all. Just like Kaeya, she holds friends at a distance. But she provides you with just enough tenderness for the sweet wait to be worth it.
What this crush says about you: You like Diluc because he has a strong sense of his own values.
This is a rich heir who had it all made, and he chose to be a part-time vigilante instead of quietly enjoying his money. Who even does that? That’s right: he’s Batman, down to the half mask, dead parents, and the Dark Knight alias. Diluc is Bruce Wayne turned into an anime boy. You’re a sucker for a tragic backstory, and he delivers. His edgy appeal is also accentuated by the fact that every other adult in Mondstadt is a goody-goody knight. Diluc might be a popular character, but you know exactly what you like.
What this crush says about you: You consider service to be a love language.
Someone has probably told you that you have boring taste in Genshin crushes. After all, Jean is a straight-laced knight who doesn’t have any noticeable faults. She’s the kind of woman that people want to resent a little because her existence is an affront to natural human laziness. But it’s the diligent paragons who hold up the sky for everyone else. Despite guarding the troublesome city of freedom, she never once resents her duty. When you take a break or fail at a task, it’s women like Jean who ensure that you ever had the option in the first place. And when someone accuses her of being a Mary Sue, you could easily point out several Jeans in your life. The Dandelion Knight is only ‘unrealistic’ to people who aren’t empathetic enough to notice those busy bees.
What this crush says about you: You’re a lesbian with impeccable taste.
Ningguang has a slightly aloof exterior, but you can’t help but admire the determination of a shrewd strategist. When other people may be put off by her eagerness to weaponize her good deeds in business negotiations, you’re cheering her on. Why shouldn’t Ningguang succeed when she worked hard for every bit of success that she has?
She has a mysterious allure, but her private loneliness is plain for all to see. She is feared by her enemies, and her subjects have mythologized her information network as a means to prosperity. She is openly disliked by at least three playable characters in Liyue, and Ningguang makes no effort to placate their criticisms. But isn’t that a little sad? You certainly think so. You only wish that more people knew that her ruthless pragmatism does not preclude her kindness.
What this crush says about you: You like someone fun but not too edgy.
Beidou looks like a pirate, but you wouldn’t have fallen for her if she wasn’t lawful and kind. You see a kindred soul in a ship captain who seeks self-sufficiency. You have dreams other than your soul-sucking day job, but your bills aren’t going to pay themselves. Others may side-eye her for working with a ruthless merchant like Ningguang. You know better than to judge a woman who makes compromises to pursue a lifestyle that she loves.
Also, “Uncrowned Lord of the Ocean” is one hell of an epithet.
What this crush says about you: You’re into older guys, and I respect that.
Liking Zhongli also makes you gay. There’s a book in the game called Rex Incognito, and it details a story about Zhongli appearing in front of humans in the form of an amber-eyed woman. He’s also nearly four thousand years old, aka too old for this gender binary nonsense.
There’s a lot to like about the Lord of Geo. He has a helpful personality, and he is deeply knowledgeable about the culture of Liyue. But what makes you (ok, and also me) go absolutely feral about this dragon grandpa is that he will never break a promise to you. It would be completely unthinkable to a god who held up an entire nation for almost six thousand years. You’ve already made the past mistake of settling for unreliable guys who can’t hold themselves accountable. It’s guys like Zhongli who make you feel that you have the capacity to heal.
And can I reiterate that he’s thousands of years old? This guy fought the bloodiest war in recorded history, watched humans turn on each other for profit, and still decided that humans were worth protecting. I cry every time.
What this crush says about you: You don’t have many self-preservation instincts.
Tartaglia is not just one of the ruthless Fatui. He’s one of their leaders. He takes pleasure in destabilizing other countries, and you find that… hot?
OK, I was cynical too. Then I replayed his boss battle, and…I get it. From the art style of Genshin Impact, one would expect a tragic anime boy with a huge sob story. Except he’s not. Tartaglia revels in what he’s able to accomplish with his dark powers, and…phew, ok. The way he babies his younger siblings is cute, but you’re looking for an equal. Someone who could match your own boundless energy and drive. You found that in Tartaglia, who is the only person standing between you and late-game talent upgrade drops. Forget candlelit dates at the Wangming restaurant. You’d rather test your strength against the memory of him once a week.
Alternatively, you just love a man with a full coin purse. I can’t fault you for that, either.
What this crush says about you: You’ve dated at least one guy who was into super obscure books or films, and you ended up getting into all sorts of weird genres by proxy.
And no, Albedo is not the same as the bookworm Xingqiu. The latter will keep his personal hobbies to himself, but Albedo insists on dragging you into mysterious circumstances. It doesn’t really matter if you understand his interests because he’s so compelling about them. He’s not intentionally deceptive like Tartaglia, but your character should probably have a sit-down conversation about everything that he’s hiding. Damn, every guy in the Knights of Favonius is super shady, huh?
What this crush says about you: You don’t mind being the supporting partner in a relationship. Or you can relate to her diaspora struggles.
After all, you have a crush on a three-thousand-year-old woman who runs half of the harbour by herself. Jean could probably also be your type, but you prefer the character who openly shows her emotional vulnerabilities. She may be a capable older woman, but her self-esteem problems make you feel protective of her. Everyone else thinks highly of her, so why can’t she internalize self-worth? You get it if you’re a child of two different worlds, as Ganyu’s pain cuts you deep. When people misunderstand Ganyu’s inner conflict, you jump to her defence. While others view her as a helpful secretary, you know that Ganyu deserves to be loved regardless of the output of her labour. Congrats for having impeccable taste.
Genshin Impact’s bachelors and bachelorettes are numerous, and there will be more to come. Have you set your eyes on someone, or are you awaiting your true love in the Inazuma update?