There’s No Switch Genshin Impact, So I Make Do With a PS5 Controller

I don't feel so guilty about using up Original Resin anymore, either.

For the Nintendo Switch, Genshin Impact seems like a slam dunk. Sadly that’s not to be (at least not yet). The game is exclusive across consoles to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5. Though even that doesn’t fit my needs very well. See, while the game features crossplay across all versions, there is no save transfer to or from those systems, specifically. That’s a bummer since I’d love to play on my TV. Yet my progress is tied to the PC and phone versions. Genshin Impact on Switch could of course fill every gap at once — especially given how much I’ve come to play the game in bed thanks to its “Original Resin” system. Whether a Switch port ever happens or not, though, at least now I’ve finally got controller support for my favorite PlayStation accessory.

The DualSense is a great little device. It’s hefty without feeling clunky; all its buttons just feel right. At least to someone who’s been trained on PlayStation games since the 90s (e.g. me). I previously paired my DualShock 4 (the previous Sony controller) to my iPad and iPhone over Bluetooth. Unfortunately, it was just too hard to go back. The device feels light and cheap by comparison. My Xbox controller felt a little better, but it’s almost too weighty to lug around my house, pull up in bed, and heft up in front of a smartphone. It wasn’t quite right.

More Genshin Impact:

iOS update 14.5.1 finally added PS5 controller support for Apple devices — and thus for Genshin Impact on my phone. I’ve still had nothing but headaches getting it to work with the game on PC. But for the purposes of laying down with my cat and burning off some Original Resin before sleepy time, the DualSense is perfect. Particularly because of the way Original Resin in Genshin Impact works.

It’s a pretty standard “energy system” akin to other gacha games. Obtaining rewards from certain activities requires some amount of Resin (typically between 20 and 40 units), which regenerates over time (once every eight minutes in the real world). That can mean a really long wait, so it’s often good to use up as much as possible before going to bed. That way the juice refills overnight. The issue is that most Resin activities are twitchy, complicated affairs. They’re usually boss fights and special trials in dungeons called “Domains.” Playing with a touchscreen doesn’t always cut it.

Enter the aforementioned controller. Playing with my DualSense makes beating a Hypostasis possible. Domains become a breeze. Overall, the experience is just a lot more pleasant, and I don’t feel like I’m wasting Resin by grinding easy, less important content like Ley Line Outcrops.

The process isn’t perfect, though. The onscreen prompts can only show Xbox buttons as far as I can determine. Not to mention Genshin Impact controller support across the board is a little strange. Despite the Microsoft themed buttons, it uses the old school PlayStation mapping; Circle is confirm and Cross is cancel. I switch those around any time I sync I new device. Even that feels a little hinky, though, since the menus don’t work with the D-pad. You’re locked into navigating with the analog sticks.

Problems aside, this is the best portable experience I’ve had with Genshin Impact. Switch support might never come, but in the meantime playing with the game propped up on a copy of Continental Op short stories works well enough. And my cat appreciates having me to stretch out on top of again.