Explore the World of Genshin Impact’s Sumeru

A review on the new Genshin Impact update


With the drop of version 3.0 and more to come, the popular video game Genshin Impact has hit the community with its largest update yet. Genshin is a cross-platform video game that incorporates an anime art style, interesting character designs, and a unique combat system. The game’s premise centers around the main character, the Traveler, exploring the world alongside their companion, Paimon, to find their long-lost sibling. Recently, the game has added a whole new nation to its collection. Sumeru, based on a combination of India and Middle Eastern countries, has brought new quests, playable characters, fun NPCs, a variety of different foods, and colorful music.

The game has undoubtedly added more and attracted both new and old players to come back to the game. The variety of new experiences added to the game offer a plethora of new content for players.

The main plot leads the protagonist to travel West and enter the first major locale, Avidya Forest after passing through a protective wall that had previously kept the Traveler out. There, we meet several forest rangers who help us make our way to Sumeru City, the capital of the country. Upon the Traveler’s arrival, the locals are hosting a festival to celebrate the nation’s protector and god of wisdom, Lesser Lord Kusunali. We later find out that the Akademiya, the elite group of scholars, have been controlling the city for their own benefits, and it’s up to the Traveler and their friends to take them down. As with every new location unlocked in Genshin Impact, Sumeru’s release came jam-packed with many adjacent quests that introduced new lore. For example, the five-hour long questline called the Aranyaka Quests follows the Traveler as they begin to navigate the Sumeru forests and discover some strange supernatural occurrences.

Genshin Impact’s Sumeru

Genshin has also diversified its gameplay by adding new soundtracks, a multitude of areas to explore, and intricate lore that is able to be uncovered through the completion of side quests. Sumeru’s original soundtrack was composed by HoyoMix, who has created a masterpiece. This beautiful soundtrack goes hand in hand with the interactions between the Traveler and new mechanics, enemies, and puzzles.

The playable characters that join the Traveler on their quest include the two forest rangers, Tighnari and Collei, as well as the genie-riding merchant Dori. In the subsequent version, the Traveler’s party will be joined by academic scholar Cyno, dancer and religious follower Nilou, and holy warrior Candace. These characters incorporate different aspects of real life cultures, creative attack patterns, and interact with the Traveler in their own special way. Genshin Impact’s cast of Sumeru characters helps diversify the game, especially with the range of skin tones. 

Though Genshin Impact has gotten lots of praise for the new update, some in the gaming community have mixed feelings about the additions. One of the most prevalent complaints about Sumeru is the number of characters with pale complexions introduced in this part. Because Sumeru is partially based on India and Arabian cultures that are made up primarily of darker-skinned people in the real world, many have complained that the characters released do not correctly represent the actual people they take cultural inspiration from. An example of this is Alhaithem, a main protagonist, who has pale skin and green eyes despite being based off of the real life Arab scientist of the Islamic Golden Age, Ibn al-Haythem. Others defend this choice by saying that Sumeru also takes inspiration from Middle Eastern countries whose population contains a large range of skin tones and has fair-skinned people. Representation of minorities should be accurate, but the mix of traditions has left a sour note in some people’s mouths while others enjoy this concoction of traditions and people.

Despite differing opinions on the update, the game has undoubtedly added more and attracted both new and old players to come back to the game. The variety of new experiences added to the game offer a plethora of new content for players. Though the community is having disagreements about representation, Genshin’s update provides the magical world of Teyvat with a variety of more perspectives.