Honkai Star Rail vs. Genshin Impact: Which is Better? Answered

Honkai Star Rail Screenshot

Honkai: Star Rail and Genshin Impact are both gacha games created by HoYoverse and are often compared to each other due to many of the similarities between the two games. The two gacha games share many systems with each other, such as leveling up characters and farming for certain gear, but there are also some key differences between the two games as well. Obviously, judging which game is better is a subjective matter. But you can use these differences to ask yourself: Honkai Star Rail vs. Genshin Impact: Which is Better?

One thing to keep in mind is Genshin Impact is a good bit older than Honkai: Star Rail. This means the former game does have more meat on the bone than Honkai: Star Rail. As a result, this guide will try to keep things more general, keeping in mind Honkai: Star Rail has a long future ahead of it. Follow this guide to find out which is better, Honkai: Star Rail gold Genshin Impact?

Related: Honkai Star Rail: Best Build for Welt – Relics, Light Cones, Eidolons and Abilities

Both games are not open world

Genshin Impact Amrita Pool Map

Screenshot by PC Invasion

One of the biggest differences between these two games is the lack of an open world in Honkai: Star Rail. Genshin Impact is famous for its vast and complex open world, spanning four different regions at the time of this writing. These regions are absolutely massive and contain dozens of hours of exploration content. For those looking for fun puzzles and chests to explore, Genshin Impact has a huge open-world universe for you to explore.

Alternatively, this is not the case for Honkai: Star Rail. This game is more linear, with defined zones, fewer puzzles, and fewer collectibles to find around the map. As a result, there is less exploration content than in Genshin Impact in this game, even comparing the starting zones of Genshin Impact and Honkai: Star Rail. Genshin Impact admittedly has a lot of exploration content, so if this is something you prioritize between the two gacha games, you might find more to love with Genshin Impact.

Both games have completely different combat systems

Genshin Impact Setekh Wenut Pseudo Stamens Alhaitham 1b

Screenshot by PC Invasion

Genshin Impact has action-based combat with its own unique element system. Combining multiple elements with your skills and abilities can create elemental reactions that increase your team’s damage. You’ll walk around the open world and engage in combat at will, slashing enemies with your many different weapons and ultimate abilities. Action-based combat, therefore, is much more mechanical and relies on the knowledge you have of your team, the rotations for your team, and enemy attack patterns.

Meanwhile, Honkai: Star Rail has turn-based RPG combat, with a weakness system that resembles a simplified Shin Megami Tensei gold personas game. In this sense, combat is more about matching enemy weaknesses and adapting to specific boss strategies. Team-building is still an important aspect of Honkai: Star Railbut there is admittedly more freedom and variety with the teams you can create in Genshin Impact. That being said, both combat systems are good and functional, so this is a matter of whether you prefer turn-based combat or action combat.

Related: Honkai Star Rail: Best Build for Seele – Relics, Light Cones, Eidolons and Abilities

Honkai: Star Rail has a more generous gacha system

Bronya Clara Honkai Star Rail Team Copms

Screenshot by PC Invasion

Honkai: Star Rail has a more generous gacha system than Genshin Impact, which is like comparing the poisonous bites of two different snakes. But nevertheless, Honkai: Star Rail includes a beginner gacha banner that guarantees a 5-star character by 50 pulls, whereas Genshin Impact does not have this system. Additionally, Honkai: Star Rail allows you to choose a guaranteed 5-star standard character at 300 sweaters. Genshin Impact does not include this safety net.

Honkai: Star Rail‘s weapon banner is also slightly better than Genshin Impact. Honkai features fewer options and a 75% chance to hit a 5-star weapon, while Genshin Impact features two 5-star weapons, which may result you in pulling a weapon you do not want. (Not all 5-star weapons in Genshin Impact are good, keep in mind.) With a more generous gacha system, Honkai: Star Rail has left an impression that it’s a bit more friendly for free-to-play players to engage with longterm.

Honkai: Star Rail‘s endgame is better…slightly

Welt Best Team Comps Honkai Star Rail [1]

Screenshot by PC Invasion

Honkai: Star Rail and Genshin Impact both suffer a similar issue with the lack of endgame content. Genshin Impact is frequently criticized for its lack of endgame content, which doesn’t give players much incentive to log into the game and play for extended periods of time. Honkai: Star Rail has a few more options to choose from, with difficult fights and bosses sprinkled across it’s universe. The game also features a roguelike mode, the Simulated Universe, which offers a new challenge and weekly activity.

Both games do present themselves as more casual, however, with a design intending for you to log on for only brief periods at a time. Don’t go to both games looking for endgame content, but Honkai: Star Rail may treat you better in this regard.

Genshin Impact has co-op

How to get Mailed Flower in Genshin Impact featured

Image by HoYoverse

If social systems are important to you, then you might as well not want to look at Honkai: Star Rail at all. Honkai: Star Rail has virtually no social connectivity at the time of this writing. You are able to add friends and use one of their characters as a “support character” for select fights, but that’s the extent of friendship in this game. Genshin Impact, on the other hand, allows you to enter another players’ open world and participate in boss battles, exploration, and daily missions together. Genshin Impact also frequently holds events that require co-op play.

There are some leaks that indicate that Honkai: Star Rail may receive some more social content in the future, but as of now, Genshin Impact is the clear winner for those who would rather play with their friends.

Honkai: Star Rail has a more immersive story


Screenshot by PC Invasion

This is a matter of opinion, but Genshin Impact often suffers from long-winded and uninteresting stories with uneven pacing and stilted character dialogue. While neither game are literary masterpieces, Honkai: Star Rail‘s cast of characters are more delightful and well-varied compared to Genshin Impact, and also features an engaging dynamic between the main character and the Astral Express crew. There are some other fun details that help immerse you even further, like text messages you receive from other characters that often lead to some funny, often times hilarious interactions.

Genshin Impact‘s story is still serviceable, and there’s certainly a devoted community dedicated on dissecting the game’s deep lore. Aim Honkai: Star Rail’s story has us hooked just a little harder compared to its sister gacha game.

Honkai: Star Rail is available now.

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