Genshin Impact Update 1.2 is coming on December 23, and as developer MiHoYo revealed today, it includes two new five-star characters, a new snowy region called Dragonspine, and plenty of events and missions that dish out loot and XP.
The headliners are Albedo, a new geoblade character leading the Mondstadt Knights Research Team, and Ganyu, a half-human, half-adepti cryogenic bow user. Albedo will be available in the first banner of the update, with Ganyu in the second half. Ganyu will also have a personal side quest, while Albedo will join you as you explore the new region.
Dragonspine is Genshin Impact’s first major map expansion, and while it’s not as big as Mondstadt or Liyue, it’s just a sub-region, not an entire city, it’ll add a pretty sizable chunk to the map, and it’s packed with new missions, enemies, and secrets. A unique aspect of Dragonspine is its pure cold environmental hazard. This will be familiar to fans of Breath of the Wild – you’ll need to find ways to keep warm while exploring the snowy peaks, otherwise you’ll have a hard time getting anywhere.
Dragonspine will become the setting for a great new event called The Prince of Chalk and the Dragon. Like the Unreconciled Stars event in Update 1.1, this will grant players a Crown of Knowledge that is used to maximize a character’s talents. It also comes with a new four-star sword called Festering Desire that can be refined to grade five during the event. According to the information extracted from Honey Impact, this sword comes with energy recharge and increases the damage and critical strike chance of your elemental ability. Naturally, players can also look forward to plenty of Protogems, XP books, and event character materials.
Update 1.2 will also fill in some gaps in the artifact sets, with dedicated hydro and cryo sets added via Dragonspine. The Cryo Set increases Cryo damage and provides increased critical rate against frozen or cryo-inflicted targets, while the Hydraulic Set increases your Hydraulic Damage and provides a normal and charged attack boost after using your Elemental ability. They seem tailor-made for Tartaglia, one of the new 1.1 update characters, and Ganyu. They will emerge from a new domain in Dragonspine.
More good news for low-budget or free players: Update 1.2 will give you a free Gathering of Fate for each level 20, 50 or 70 character promotion on your account.