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10 Features ‘Tower of Fantasy’ Has That ‘Genshin Impact’ Needs

Its gacha system is way better, for one.

In-game multiplayer segment in Tower of Fantasy

You’ve probably heard someone call Tower of Fantasy a Genshin Impact clone. And to be honest, you wouldn’t be entirely wrong. Hotta Studio and Level Infinite’s upcoming futuristic ARPG Tower of Fantasy sure does feel a lot like Genshin. The free-to-play game, out Aug. 10, 2022, has all the makings of a Genshin-like game. There’s open exploration, teleporters to unlock, a gliding mechanism, cooking minigames, upgradable weapons, PvE combat for in-game loot, and, yes, gacha. Oh, how there’s gacha.

But despite Tower of Fantasy taking a few pages from Genshin, there’s a lot of neat features introduced by Hotta, ones that miHoYo could honestly learn from. Based on our early access to the game, here’s what we think Tower of Fantasy offers that Genshin is missing.

Customizable player characters

The preset screen for Tower of Fantasy, which offers five presets and a custom character tab.
Image via Level Infinite

In Genshin Impact, your Traveler is yours in name only. Yes, you can choose different Wind Gliders or outfits for your Traveler, but besides your original gender choice at the start of the game, that’s it. Tower of Fantasy, on the other hand, offers an incredibly robust character creation system for your main character. It’s so extensive that you can even use it to turn your Wanderer into your favorite Genshin characters! It’s a nice touch that puts a lot of power into the player’s hands, especially given how you can share your creations with other ToF fans.

Jetpacks!

Need to fly upward? Good luck. In Genshin Impact, you need to find a wind current, make sure you have enough stamina for your trip to your destination, and, in some cases, finish the trek by scaling a mountain. It’s quite the difficult journey when you make the transition from Mondstadt’s rolling hills to Liyue’s intense mountainous ranges, where you’ll need all the stamina boosts you can get.

Tower of Fantasy bypasses this whole problem by giving players a futuristic glider of their own: Jetpacks. Wanderers standing on solid ground can skyrocket into the air and float down to their preferred destination, making vertical air travel far less difficult. Yes, there’s a cooldown on the ability, but it’s better than searching far and wide for a glide-friendly mountain top. Granted, jetpacks might not quite fit Genshin Impact’s aesthetic, but it would be great to get a leg-up in the air.

Mid-air dash

Need to dash in mid-air? You’re out of luck in Genshin. Drop back down to the ground, get a head start, and jump as you need to.

Tower of Fantasy, on the other hand, lets you jump and then dash, all to your heart’s delight. It’s a fluid little feature that’s just as useful in combat as it is in open-world traveling. Honestly, traversing Teyvat would be far easier in Genshin with some mid-air dashing, especially given how much scaling and aerial travel is involved in miHoYo’s game.

Mounts

Tower of Fantasy offers players the opportunity to ride mounts, including a motorcycle.
Image via Level Infinite

Need to get somewhere extra fast, but you can’t teleport? Forget a glider, just grab your mount. Yes, Tower of Fantasy offers all kinds of methods to get around without using your own two feet. Motorcycles, floating scooters, mech walkers, even a mechanical unicorn are all at your disposal, among other devices. Traveling Teyvat by horse would be way easier in Genshin, so we’re hoping miHoYo is paying attention to this idea for a future update.

Superior combat segments

Genshin offers so many incredibly fun and borderline mindless hilichurl encounters, but let’s face it: Its combat design could be way better. It’s easy to lose track of enemies, miss abilities’ attacks because of bad programming, or dodge just a little too far out of range and miss your fatal blow. It’s not uncommon for players to wrestle with Genshin’s combat mechanics to finish off their opponents, especially in time-based challenges, where miHoYo’s sloppy lock-on system does more harm than good.

Tower of Fantasy has a far smoother and sleeker fight system that keeps you locked onto your foes no matter where you are, as long as you’re still in combat. The game even allows you to reposition while your enemies are frozen, assuring you can deploy that perfect finishing attack. Combos are easy to pull off and entertaining to watch too, so long as you’re close enough to your foe to land your hits. The game does the rest.

And that’s not even mentioning Hotta’s mid-air combat system, which lets you lock onto an enemy, grapple toward them, and deal some vicious blows without touching the ground once. Remember the mid-air dash we mentioned above? No need to ever hit soil before killing off an aerial enemy.

Hotta’s combat capabilities are so much easier to use than what Genshin has to offer, and they’re far more fun too. Here more than anywhere else, Tower of Fantasy actually feels like a proper ARPG over miHoYo’s game.

Far more multiplayer opportunities

Shirli and the Wanderer stare out into the distance in Tower of Fantasy.
Image via Level Infinite

Genshin has co-op play after you’ve grinded out enough of your Adventure Rank, but it’s a bit of a stretch to call it a multiplayer game. At most, there are a couple online events now and then, but that’s about it. Tower of Fantasy, on the other hand, is way more generous in its multiplayer capabilities from the jump. As soon as you finish the tutorial, you’re bound to see other players running around your starting island, going about their business, doing their little tasks. Key boss events allow players to call for support for a boss fight, and friends can come together ahead of time to take on a boss ahead of time. These feel a bit more like raids, complete with various support roles.

It would be nice if miHoYo took a page from Tower of Fantasy and added a few extra MMO features into the game, just to make its world a little bit more friendly to fans looking to hang out with one another beyond running around Teyvat.

Guilds

The longer you’ve played Genshin, the more likely you’ve seen players request this long-forgotten feature: Guilds. They’re the staple of any online game and a perfect fit for Genshin’s passionate fandom, yet they’re utterly missing from the game. While miHoYo has yet to add the feature, Tower of Fantasy will soon make up for this with its Crews feature.

Crews offer 180 players the opportunity to come together and play Tower of Fantasy under one shared community. This offers the perfect way to make use of the boss-based multiplayer events listed above, although it’s just as good for running around Tower of Fantasy’s open world and fighting some baddies as a team (and doing some gacha rolls in between hits).

Dot Esports reports Crews will hit Tower of Fantasy during Q3 2022, which means we could see Hotta’s guild system in just a few weeks. Genshin could always pop in and surprise us with guilds before they hit Tower of Fantasy, but until then, this is one community-oriented approach that Hotta is leading miHoYo on.

Plenty of generous gacha rolls in the wild

Everyone knows the magic number in Genshin: 160 Primogems for one Intertwined Fate or Acquaint Fate. It’s a laborious task, and getting a daily roll often involves purchasing a Blessing of the Welkin Moon, completing your daily commissions, and doing a bit of adventuring before you have your day’s 160 rolled up.

Tower of Fantasy, on the other hand, has a far simpler and user-friendly currency system. One role on the standard banner is one Gold Nucelus. You can find these nuclei scattered throughout the game or as event rewards, which makes it far easier to stack up rolls for that coveted pity drop. Sure, like Genshin, you’ll get the most bang for your buck by dropping a couple dollars on Tower of Fantasy, but the game feels way more generous toward free-to-play fans with its gacha system on the whole.

A gacha system that’s clearly defined

A collection of Tower of Fantasy characters
Image via Level Infinite

This is the most important thing Tower of Fantasy offers over Genshin. As soon as you reach the Special Order page, the game gives you everything you need to know about its gacha system. You can keep track of its pity system and how many more rolls you need for a new character. You can read up on roll percentages and how they factor in to your current progress. You know exactly when you’ll get a coveted SSR Weapon drop, and how close you are too. No more topping off microtransaction currency just in case you get that pity drop: Tower of Fantasy makes it very clear when you’ll get exactly what you want and why.

Last, but not least: A Steam release

Tower of Fantasy isn’t out on Steam quite yet, but it’s coming. Having Steam integration in Genshin would be a total game-changer for co-op play, keeping tabs on each others’ progress, and just generally keeping PC Genshin players under the same online platform.

MiHoYo, take note: You still have time to bring your own ARPG to Valve’s platform and beat Tower of Fantasy before it arrives. Hurry now before it’s too late!

(Featured image: Level Infinite)

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Ana Valens (she/her) is a reporter specializing in queer internet culture, online censorship, and sex workers' rights. Her book "Tumblr Porn" details the rise and fall of Tumblr's LGBTQ-friendly 18+ world, and has been hailed by Autostraddle as "a special little love letter" to queer Tumblr's early history. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her ever-growing tarot collection.