It is no surprise that there is an obvious bias towards the male demographic over the female demographic in Genshin Impact. The game is, after all, another typical Gacha game, where fanservice will be catered towards the male fans, by releasing a large variety of female characters that are ‘overly-revealing’. It also does not help with the fact that HoYoverse’s other Gacha games are mostly female characters orientated, such as Honkai Impact 3rd. Therefore, this article will be dissecting the age-old question, how do Genshin Impact treat their Male Characters in the game
From the Genshin Impact player base data collected from SensorTower, 45% of players are women while the rest of the 55% are men. This is surprisingly a well-balanced ratio, which is pretty rare to see in games, especially in a Gacha game, such as Genshin Impact. As such many fans, mostly the female side of the player base, have voiced out their opinions about how HoYoverse should consider and cater to them as well.
Biasness of treatment of Male characters vs Female characters
Genshin Impact: Male Character Designs and Models
The character designs for the male characters, especially the Tall Male Models, have been quite lacklustre. Some have criticized Arattaki Itto’s character model and expressed disappointment, due to a lack of muscles in his design. Itto has been described as a big and buff Oni from all the character stories and voice lines that have been said so far.
Many fans were therefore excited about his official character design, as they anticipated a burly muscular man. Imagine the surprise when his design dropped and his model in-game looked just the same as the other skinny tall male models.
Although, it seems like HoYoverse has seen the criticism and anger expressed by all the fans demanding defined muscular men, as Alhaitham has quite a different model from the rest of the playable tall male characters. From his in-game model, he has more defined muscles and Abs from the rest and it is hilariously different if compared with Itto, who is canonically muscular. Although the model feels like the bare minimum of buff, it is still the right step in the direction of male fan-service characters.
The Number of Male characters released in the game
A considerable number of leaks surfaced recently that revealed the future playable characters of Fontaine for Version 4.0 Update and after. It caught many people off guard as Fontaine is still many patches ahead and in early development. One of the leaks showed the line-up of characters to be released in the game.
From the line-up, it is leaked that there will be 1 Short Boy Model and 1 Tall Male Model. In total, only 2 male characters will be playable in Fontaine. Due to this, many female fans expressed anger and disappointment regarding this certain leak.
Although, it is still too early to jump to such a conclusion, as this is still a leak of the current data they have found. Fontaine is still in early development and there is room for more playable characters to be released in future versions of 4.0.
Additionally, there is a false narrative spreading around in the community that criticises how HoYoverse is barely releasing new 5-star male characters in the game. This is simply false and quite far from the truth if players see the previous Sumeru 5-star releases starting from 3.0.
As shown in the image, many of the recently released characters have been male characters. To put this into perspective, the female playable 5 stars is almost the exact same number as the male playable 5 stars. The only point that is debatable is the lack of male 4-star characters and a lack of male kids in the game.
So far, Inazuma alone released only 3 new 4-star male characters, with Sumeru having no new 4-star male characters, while there are six new 4-star female characters added to the game. Additionally, there are only female playable children, which is a very questionable choice in itself, since it’s obvious that they are catering to a certain male audience. Hence, the chances of a male kid being released in the future are slim.
Are Male Characters meta in Genshin Impact
Genshin Impact is always bringing in a constant roster of playable characters to enhance the combat experience in the game. Due to this, there is an obvious meta-system in play, with many characters performing differently compared to the rest.
With saying that there has been a general argument in the community of the 5-star male characters not being as powerful and ‘META’ as the female characters. Fans have been coming up with conclusions that HoYoverse is obviously favouring female characters by making them deal high damage and giving them good kits, while male characters are always badly designed in terms of kit and damage.
While many of the top DPS are dominated by female characters, which involves the likes of Ayaka, Hu Tao, Ganyu, Raiden Shogun etc. While there may not be such a variety of power male DPS characters, the male supports have been pulling through in the game. Kazuha, Zhongli, Bennett and Xingqiu are the many examples of male characters that have consistently been in the highest tier for the sole fact of their amazing Support capabilities. The male DPS characters in reality are not as lacklustre and bad as people conceive them to be. Xiao, Tartaglia, Ayato, Itto, Wanderer etc have consistently been used in Spiral Abysses and can be 36-starred with the right builds alone.
Male Characters vs Female Characters in Genshin Impact: Character Lore and Personality
There has been an ongoing debate within the community about how well-received the story and lore are on both male and female characters. Many of them have fervently agreed that the male characters in Genshin Impact have a more interesting personality and lore, compared to the female characters that are claimed to be boring and mediocre, reducing them to characters with no depth.
This is, of course, factually wrong and the narrative seems to stem from, how the game favours the male characters in terms of giving them more lore-relevant limited events and storylines, compared to the female characters who are barely given a chance to shine.
For example, HoYoverse has released many of their Limited Events that have either been very Lore heavy on some characters or others being very slice-of-life fun Events. Characters like Xiao and Albedo have been given chances to shine, by giving them Limited Events that are centred on their stories, such as the annual Dragonspine Events for Albedo and the Chasm Event for Xiao.
While in light-hearted Events, characters like Keqing and Xiangling get the back-burner of being reduced to silly light-hearted adventures that do not talk about their characters. Female characters have very interesting personalities and good lore to their stories that is only hidden away through character voice lines and Profiles. In terms of bias, there is no surprise that HoYoverse loves to let its male characters shine in these Limited Events.
Even though there is a clear bias towards the male fans in the Genshin community, it does not excuse the fact that there is a large number of female players in the community as well. Therefore, HoYoverse should consider its female player base as much as its male player base.