Ever since its reveal, Genshin Impact was seen by most gamers as a clone of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which was upsetting enough for a fan to smash a PS4 console in protest. However, the game has been available on multiple platforms free of charge for over a week, and players have found Genshin Impact actually stands out, when compared to Nintendo\’s adventure juggernaut. The Zelda inspiration is extremely clear on the surface, but those who dig deeper into Genshin Impact will find it\’s actually more of an open-world RPG than a Zelda clone.

Breath of the Wild was a revolutionary title that changed the way players viewed not only Zelda games but open-world games as a whole. Link was given the ability to climb nearly every surface in the game, as well as jump and glide from any height using a paraglider. These two mechanics, coupled with the game\’s overwhelming sense of freedom, made Breath of the Wild an absolute blast, exploring Hyrule and discovering its abundance of secrets.

It\’s easy to understand why many initially believed that Genshin Impact was going to be a Zelda clone. The game\’s aesthetic, especially in terms of its world, closely mimics what blew gamers\’ minds back in 2017. Genshin Impact\’s climbing and gliding mechanics only sealed the deal that its reputation would be that of nothing more than a corporate cash grab, hoping to claim some of the glory Zelda laid out before it. The truth is that Genshin Impact has more prevalent story and a unique, character-based combat system that ditches the weapon durability so many Zelda players hated. While it is limited, Genshin Impact\’s multiplayer also offers players ways to play co-operatively online, which is something completely absent from Breath of the Wild. The comparison between Genshin Impact and Breath of the Wild should be considered a lesson to gamers that it\’s unfair to judge a book by its cover – or a video game by its trailer.