Out of all elemental reactions in the Genshin Impact battle system, Swirl and Elemental Absorption may be one of the most confusing.
The reactive nature of the elements in Genshin Impact is easy enough for most players to understand. The game features seven basic elements: Anemo (wind), Cryo (ice), Dendro (nature), Electro (lightning), Geo (earth), Hydro (water), and Pyro (fire). Interaction between these elements would produce different results.
A good example for this is the reaction between Hydro and Cryo that results in the “Frozen” state. It doesn’t take a genius to know what this entails. But one of the lesser-known reactions is Swirl and its accompanying Elemental Absorption effect.
The whirlwind effect on Genshin Impact
The basic foundation for the Swirl reaction is the Anemo element. Players that use characters with the wind element would no doubt already have stumbled on this reaction early in the game.
The best way to describe the Swirl reaction is that it acts in the same manner as a whirlwind. The wind is easily one of the most congenial elements out there in terms of mixing with other elements.
Picture a strong whirlwind passing through a burning field. Because the whirlwind acts as a vacuum, it will naturally suck in everything it can from its surroundings. Add fire to a whirlwind and you’ll get a “fire devil” or what is more commonly known as a fire whirl.
According to MiHoYo, the Swirl reaction in Genshin Impact follows the same principle. The Swirl will take in the characteristics of the elements it absorbs. And the absorbing factor (vacuum) in this reaction is the Elemental Absorption, hence the name.
This is the passive effect that combines the wind element with other elements such as Pyro, Hydro, or Electro.
How it occurs during combat
The Swirl happens when an Anemo skill applies Elemental Absorption to other elements namely Cryo, Electro, Hydro, or Pyro. Bear in mind that there is a limit to what the Anemo skill can absorb.
In fact, this skill absorbs only the first element it comes to contact with during battle. When this happens, the Anemo skill will then release a swirl containing the element it had absorbed and spreading it to a limited area.
Elemental absorption is not exclusive to the Swirl reaction. However, it is mostly seen in Anemo characters such as Venti and Sucrose. Lastly, Elemental Burst will always have the passive Elemental Absorption effect on Genshin Impact.
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