Another year, another Genshin Impact competitor. This time around, it’s Wuthering Waves from Kuro Technology, a Hong Kong-based game developer. They were also the ones responsible for Punishing: Gray Raven and it’s clear that some of that game’s style has spilled over to Wuthering Waves.
Now that the game is drawing ever closer to its eventual release date, it’s time to orient ourselves with the game’s ins and outs. Here’s how the game might just differ (or be similar) to its competitors, and for those looking for something enticing to draw them in, here’s what we know and what you might want to know about Wuthering Waves.
It’s Not an MMORPG
Tower of Fantasy went the opposite route when it came to the game’s online direction by styling itself as an MMORPG. Thankfully, Wuthering Waves didn’t follow suit. While there’s no officially permanent decision yet on what the multiplayer component will look like for Wuthering Waves, it appears it’s closer to Genshin Impact’s online structure.
Wuthering Waves is still a live service game that will require players to be online during gameplay, but it will also be a dominantly single-player experience. Presumably, multiplayer will be restricted to co-op play for now— unless developers squeeze in some dramatic changes after the closed beta test.
It’s Also a Gacha Game
Get ready to pick favorites again since, like all anime games in a similar style and gameplay, Wuthering Waves is also a gacha game. You improve your account and opportunities for combat by “pulling” for highly-coveted and rare characters.
So presumably, the game’s updates and future gameplay will revolve around the added characters as part of their consistent stream of live-service content. It’s also a way for the developers to generate revenue for the game since, like any gacha game, there’s a lot of randomness involved.
The Gacha Pull Rates Are Close to Genshin Impact’s
One of the most open criticisms against Genshin Impact is the relatively unforgiving gacha pull or win rates. On Genshin Impact, your chance of getting a 5-star character is 0.6 percent.
You’ll be pleased to know that Wuthering Waves is more generous— albeit ever so slightly, with a 5-star win rate of 0.8 percent, but the rate for 4-star characters is 6.0 percent.
And wouldn’t you know it, their pity system is the same as Genshin Impact’s. If you get a 5-star win, there’s a 50/50 chance it might be the featured banner character. If you get something else, then your next pity pull will be a guaranteed featured character.
For some, that might be a dealbreaker, especially if the pity percentage from Genshin is already a turn-off; but remember, things could still change for Wuthering Waves during the final release.
The Game Is Set in an Open-world Sci-fi Post-apocalyptic Land
Where Wuthering Waves sets itself apart, just like in Tower of Fantasy, is in its adherence to a more futuristic and sci-fi fantasy setting. Whereas Genshin Impact is strictly fantasy, Wuthering Waves features overt futuristic and sci-fi elements such as guns, and this presents a significant stylistic and mechanical change in its combat system.
So you can expect it to be more action-oriented compared to Genshin Impact, just as Tower of Fantasy offered players a more energetic combat system. Moreover, the story and the game’s general atmosphere are drastically different due to its gloomier and more serious setting.
Traversing Feels More Agile
Wuthering Waves also offers its upcoming players a faster way to traverse and scale their environments. Instead of the limited wall-climbing and gliding which Genshin Impact borrowed from Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Wuthering Waves gives players grappling hooks and wall-running.
Characters will not slow to a crawl just to scale a mountain or wall, they’ll just wall-run right to the top, depending on how much stamina they have. Grappling hooks have a similar effect as they might as well be zip lines due to how much players can use them to liberally cross gaps between terrain— even while in mid-air.
If that’s not enough, Wuthering Waves will also allow its players to transform into different creatures they’ve scanned as part of its traversal and environmental mechanics. For instance, players can transform into a creature with wings for a limited time to make traveling easier.
Parties Consist of Three Characters
It might look like a small change, but the three-character limit in Wuthering Waves is a rather significant deviation from what Genshin Impact players might be used to. Combos are much tighter and, depending on how the skills are set up, might be less confusing to perform.
Each character also appears to have three active skills or abilities, making their differences more accentuated. At the same time, your gameplay choices might feel more limited since you need to keep benching out characters if you want to use a specific one, given the limited party space.
Right off the bat, you’ll get to play Wuthering Waves Closed Beta on:
That is assuming you were given the slot during the closed beta recruitment. There’s no console there, as you might have noticed; Wuthering Waves is likely following Genshin Impact’s release pattern. A console, specifically the PlayStation release, might come later, depending on the game’s popularity.
There is a big chance for a console release, given how Kuro Technology is already localizing Wuthering Waves in English early, meaning they’re also aiming for a global release right away. For now, it’s back to basics with your phone or from the comfort of your PC.
Some Mechanics Are Subject To Change
Do keep in mind that closed betas are by no means representative of the final product, and a lot of mechanics, visuals, and directions are still subject to changes. This all depends on the feedback beta testers give the developers of Wuthering Waves.
So if you’re a beta tester who got lucky, it’s best to be vocal about your feedback in order to improve the game or sway it in a more favorable or more competitive direction.
And speaking of competition, Wuthering Waves is a good thing. It might actually become a Genshin Impact killer, but maybe not. If it gains enough traction and popularity, it could put pressure on Genshin Impact’s status as the gacha king, and the latter might be inclined to be more generous to its players.