At long last, Hu Tao has arrived and ready to shake the meta of Genshin Impact. With her spear and her adorableness, she rises to become one of the top DPS units in the game. But only with the right weapon and artifacts can you unleash her full power — and this guide will tell you how.

Genshin Impact’s latest update just released Hu Tao, a polearm user hailing from Liyue. She might not look like it, but she is the 77th Director of the Wangsheng Funeral Parlor, the same establishment where Zhongli incidentally works as a consultant. Having a cheeky and troublesome nature, she defies all notions about her, as she may well be a master of the battlefield where she brings a deadly mix of pyro and polearms to sweep her foes away.

WHO IS HU TAO?

Hu Tao might not look like it, but she is the 77th Director of the Wangsheng Funeral Parlor. This is the same establishment where Zhongli incidentally works as a consultant. Having a cheeky and troublesome nature, she defies all notions about her. She may as well be a master of the battlefield where she brings a deadly mix of pyro and polearms to sweep her foes away.

MiHoYo released Hu Tao on February 27, 2021, on Patch 1.3.

ABILITIES OVERVIEW

Hu Tao’s elemental skill, Guide to Afterlife, is what defines her DPS capability from the very start. During the duration of Guide to Afterlife, she gets a multitude of bonuses:

  • Converts attacks to Pyro damage.
  • Hu Tao’s ATK is increased based on her Max HP.
  • Charged Attacks inflict Blood Blossoms that deal damage.
  • Increases Hu Tao’s resistance to interruption.

The multitude of buffs she receives during the skill looks crazy enough, and that already makes Hu Tao a great carry on her own. The downside is that she sacrifices a portion of her HP to activate the skill. No worries, though, because her ability takes care of this.

Spirit Soother, Hu Tao’s Elemental Burst, allows her to command a spirit to attack foes in a large AoE. Every time it strikes an enemy, it regenerates Hu Tao’s HP. If Hu Tao’s HP is lower, her Burst deals even more damage and regenerates a lot more. 

Both Hu Tao’s Elemental Skill and Burst provide a potent combo of damage and sustain, allowing her to deal with almost any situation on her own. To enhance this even further, we still need to find the right weapons and the ideal artifacts in order for Hu Tao to shine as one of the best DPS carries in the game right now. 

BEST WEAPON BUILD FOR HU TAO

Hu Tao’s pyro conversion and the ability to increase her own ATK make her formidable. Hence, these weapons are best-suited for her:

Staff of Homa – A 5-star polearm tailor-made for Hu Tao, its passive increases her HP by 20%. Additionally, it provides an ATK bonus of 0.8% of her max HP (1.8% if Hu Tao is below 50% HP). Both of the staff’s passives directly increase Hu Tao’s damage by a significant amount due to the HP scaling. It also synergizes well with her low-HP mechanic provided by her second Talent. This is her best weapon. Get this while the current weapon banner is still up.

Primordial Jade Winged Spear – Originally Xiao’s signature weapon, Hu Tao may still use this 5-star polearm to great effect. At its lowest level, the Primordial Jade Winged Spear increases ATK by 3.2% for 6s on hit at a maximum of 7 stacks, and the wielder’s DMG dealt is increased by 12% at obtaining maximum stacks. This weapon’s passive augments Hu Tao’s already amazing attack damage, and its generic ATK boost also affects Hu Tao’s Blood Blossoms and Spirit Soother.

Deathmatch – This polearm is obtained from the Battle Pass, and it solidifies its status as one of the best polearms in terms of value and accessibility. As the other crafted weapons are only great on niche playstyles, Deathmatch is one that is very accessible and works for almost any DPS polearm build. Thus, this is an obvious choice for many players. Its passive increases ATK and DEF by 16% when there are two enemies nearby. Meanwhile, if there are fewer than 2 foes, it increases ATK by 24%. Increases in ATK are always welcome, and the extra DEF provides survivability when Hu Tao loses life due to her Elemental Skill.

BEST ARTIFACTS BUILD FOR HU TAO

Finding the best artifacts could be a bit tricky due to Hu Tao’s conversion to Pyro, but there are definitely a couple of great picks you could easily choose from to maximize her DPS.

Gladiator’s FinaleMost of Hu Tao’s DPS comes from her basic attacks, due to her Elemental Skill providing it with a multitude of bonuses. Gladiator’s Finale’s 2 piece bonus provides a good boost to ATK, while its 4 piece bonus significantly boosts her basic attack damage even further. A good alternative would be using 2 pieces of Gladiator and 2 pieces of Crimson Witch of Flames, if you want to boost her Pyro damage in exchange for her basic attack’s damage.

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Lavawalker –  If you’re going for a more elemental-oriented build, this artifact set is great for that. The reason why we choose this over a 4 piece Crimson Witch of Flames, is that Hu Tao can only reach a maximum of one stack, thus not making full use of the artifact set. With Lavawalker, ALL damage that Hu Tao deals against Pyro-affected foes are increased by 35%, and since she deals mostly pyro, it is practically up all the time.

Berserker / Blood-SoakedIf you’ve only started playing Genshin Impact recently and don’t have access to 5-star artifacts, this set could get you going already and let you steamroll content while you level your way towards the endgame. This set provides you with a lot of Crit Rate, and after activating Hu Tao’s Elemental Skill (Which costs 30% of Max HP), you are immediately under the effect of Berserker’s 4 piece passive, which provides you with a huge amount of Crit Rate.

BEST TEAM COMP FOR HU TAO

Hu Tao may be a selfish carry and can work on her own, but that doesn’t mean you can’t support her to further increase your team’s DPS. After all, players can have a party of four, and who you choose to support Hu Tao could mean clearing certain content or not.

Pyro Resonance – If you have at least two characters of the same element in your party, your whole party gets a Resonance bonus depending on what element the resonance comes from. In this case, having two Pyro characters provide you with a whopping 25% bonus ATK for the whole party. This means that having another Pyro to support Hu Tao is always great, and it also means you have more Pyro applications for your whole party. Bennett is one of the best supports in the game, as he heals, buffs ATK, and generates a lot of energy for your team. Xiangling also provides good burst damage from her Pyronado. Xinyan can provide shields that can deal Pyro damage, as well as giving a way to deal with shields with her claymore.

Elemental Reactions – With the right combination of characters, elemental reactions can deal a lot of damage, providing additional damage apart from your main carry’s DPS. Xinqiu’s Elemental Burst deals Hydro DPS every time you attack, which still works after you switch to your main carry, making it an amazing enabler of Vaporise for Hu Tao. Diona provides lingering Cryo damage which Hu Tao can melt, while also providing shields. Fischl’s Oz deals consistent Electro damage over a long duration, which is perfect for a lot of Overload reactions. Albedo is also surprisingly good for providing consistent shields with Crystallize at the same time dealing a lot of damage without consuming too much field time. 

SUMMARY

Despite a lot of competition in the Pyro category (with the likes of Diluc and Klee), Hu Tao still comes in as a force to be reckoned with. Along with her own Pyro conversion and a ton of self-sustain, she puts other carries to shame and could easily beat content without much help. With the right build and a good choice of supports, she can easily be the best DPS character of your roster, and not even the hardest of domains will stop you.