Hu Tao’s best weapon: Staff of Homa
Bar none, I do consider the Staff of Homa as the best-in-slot (BIS) weapon for Hu Tao in Genshin Impact. Unfortunately, it’s a 5-star weapon that only comes from the “Epitome Invocation” weapon banner that features it (along with a rerun of Wolf’s Gravestone). Worse, the weapon banner has been met with controversy, as some players claim the results are rigged.
Still, if you’re able to obtain it, then it should serve you well. At level 1 refinement (R1), the Staff of Homa’s trait, “Reckless Cinnabar,” increases the wielder’s HP by 20%. Moreover, it also adds an ATK bonus based on 0.8% of the wielder’s max HP. Also, when the character’s current HP goes below 50%, the ATK bonus is increased based on 1% of the wearer’s max HP. Likewise, its sub-stat increases crit damage.
The reason why the Staff of Homa is the best weapon in Genshin Impact for Hu Tao is due to its trait’s synergy with her elemental skill, “Guide to Afterlife.” Think of this skill as slightly similar to Xiao’s “Bane of All Evil” ult/burst in that it consumes Hu Tao’s HP while it’s active (the only difference is that Xiao’s ult drains his HP while Hu Tao’s skill instantly takes out a chunk).
Upon activation, though, Hu Tao enters the “Paramita Papilio State,” converting all her damage into Pyro, as well as boosting her ATK based on her max HP the moment you use the skill. Hu Tao’s dash attacks even let her apply a “Blood Blossom” mark on enemies, afflicting them with a burning damage-over-time (DOT) effect. As such, the Staff of Homa’s “Reckless Cinnabar” trait goes hand in hand with that HP and ATK increase already.
Other weapon substitutes include the following:
- Primordial Jade Winged- Spear (crit rate sub-stat) – This is another 5-star weapons from wishes, so it’s quite tough to get. Plus, this should be your chosen weapon for Xiao and/or Xiangling if you already have them.
- Lithic Spear (ATK% sub-stat) – Yet another gacha weapon, this 4-star item grants +7% ATK and +3% crit rate to the wielder for each character in your active party who hails from Liyue. Examples include Xiangling, Qiqi, Ganyu, and Xiao.
- Prototype Grudge/Prototype Starglitter (energy recharge sub-stat) – This 4-star weapon from the Blacksmith increases a character’s normal and charged attack damage by 8% when you use an elemental skill (stacks up to two times). Sadly, the lengthy cooldown for Hu Tao’s elemental skill means you’re likely to maximize just one stack of this effect.
- Deathmatch (crit rate sub-stat) – This only comes from the premium version of the Battle Pass. Its trait increases the wielder’s ATK and DEF by 16% when there are at least two enemies nearby. If there are less than two, ATK is increased by 24%.
- Blackcliff Pole (crit damage sub-stat) – This comes from Paimon’s Shop and it’s purchased using 24x Masterless Starglitter. But, the shop itself tends to have a rotating list of wares. The character’s ATK is increased by 12% for 30 seconds after killing an enemy, and you can gain up to three stacks.
- Royal Spear (ATK% sub-stat) – This is also from Paimon’s Shop. When you damage an enemy, your crit rate is temporarily increased by 8% (up to five stacks); getting a critical hit removes all stacks. While I haven’t tested it yet since I don’t have the weapon, there might be a possibility that the DOT from the burning status counts as damage, thereby adding stacks.
- White Tassel (crit rate sub-stat) – This is a 3-star weapon, so you can easily find it in Genshin Impact‘s treasure chests or those useless 3-star gacha drops that we all end up with. It does have a low base ATK stat, but, at level 5 refinement (R5), it increases normal ATK damage by 48%. This is one of the better options for her.
- Black Tassel (HP sub-stat) – Also a 3-star weapon, the biggest upside here is the HP sub-stat (due to Hu Tao’s HP-scaling mechanic). Unfortunately, it has a terribly low base ATK and its proc is only useful against slime mobs.
Anyway, let’s go to the next part of our guide to talk about Hu Tao’s best artifacts in Genshin Impact.