Honkai: Star Rail has released its all new four-star character, Yukong. As the first new four-star character to be released in the game after its launch, should player consider her a must-pull character?
There are seven different elements and paths for a character to be aligned with in the game.
Yukong is the first four-star Imaginary-type character which makes her quite valuable. The five-star Luocha, who is on a banner with Yukong, is also an Imaginary-type with the five-star Welt being the only other character with that type.
Elemental type is an important aspect in team compositions, making Yukong a valuable character for players to have more diversity in their team compositions to defeat enemies.
Her character path is Harmony which is a buffing path. This is invaluable as the common setup for team compositions needs at least one Harmony (buffer) and one Abundance/Preservation (healer/shielder) character to succeed. The turn-based combat makes it much more difficult to one-hit kill enemies and ensures that all characters will be damaged by enemies at least once per turn, hence needing these paths in team compositions.
As a Harmony character, Yukong’s traces are mainly about buffing a player’s team. Traces have four parts: the Talent, the Basic Attack, the Skill, and the Ultimate.
Her Talent makes her Basic Attack deal an additional 40% of her Attack as well as increase the Toughness-Reducing damage by 100%. This skill will retrigger after one turn.
Her Basic Attack is an arrow that deals 50% of her Attack. As with all elemental attacks, it also puts a Damage Over Time (DOT) effect on the enemies. Being an Imaginary-type character, she applies Imprisonment on enemies, delaying their action and reducing their Speed.
Her Skill is an invaluable part of her worth as a character. Her Skill gives two stacks of “Roaring Bowstrings” which increases all allies’ Attack by 40%. With each ally’s move, she loses a stack of this buff. The downside of this is that players must carefully watch their team’s Speed stat.
For example, I played Yukong with Jing Yuan, Tingyun, and March 7th. With my current builds, Tingyun has a Speed of 118, Jing Yuan with 112, Yukong with 108, and March 7th with 103. This means that when I use Yukong’s Skill, March does an action with the 40% Attack boost. Then, Tingyun does an action with the 40% Attack boost, causing the two stacks of “Roaring Bowstrings” to vanish. Jing Yuan, my main damage dealer, is then bereft of the boost.
This becomes a bit of a problem as well with her Ultimate. Her Ultimate deals 243% of Yukong’s Attack on a single enemy. If “Roaring Bowstring” is active, she increases her allies’ Critical Rate by 20% and their Critical Damage by 40%. This is a huge bonus as Critical Rate and Critical Damage are some of the hardest stats to build into characters. However, this boost is only active with “Roaring Bowstring” stacks.
With my previous example, this means that my two support characters, Ting Yun and March 7th, receive an increase to their Critical Rate and Critical Damage, but my main damage dealer doesn’t because the stacks of “Roaring Bowstring” have disappeared by his turn.
This means that players have to be careful about Yukong’s Speed, ensuring that it’s not too far apart from their damage dealers. This can be pretty difficult for early players who are using whatever Relics they can on their characters to maximize their builds. They won’t have the luxury of having many relics to shift around and properly maintain the characters’ Speed stats to ensure the right characters are getting Yukong’s buff.
The upside to her Skill and Ultimate is that the buff numbers are all increased by leveling up Yukong’s traces. This means players can get an increased Attack, Critical Rate, and Critical Damage boost by leveling up her Skill and Ultimate.
Yukong’s relics are pretty straightforward. Players can go with a full Wastelander of Banditry Desert set, the Imaginary damage boost set. However, I think Yukong loses a bit of her value with this set because the four-piece bonus requires enemies to be debuffed to get the 10% increase of Critical Rate and to be Imprisoned for the 20% Critical Damage boost.
Yukong will rarely use her Basic Attack as most players will prioritize receiving the boost she offers with her Skill and Ultimate. She may Imprison some enemies with her Ultimate dealing Imaginary damage, but otherwise enemies will rarely be Imprisoned unless there is another Imaginary type character on the team doing so.
Furthermore, as a Harmony character, she can’t debuff enemies. This means that another character in her team with this set will need to be of the Nihility path to debuff enemies.
Now, both of these problems could be fixed by running Yukong with Welt, but at that point, Welt should just have the four-piece relic set equipped and Yukong won’t have to. Besides, Welt is a five-star character, and thus, rarer for players to have acquired in the game.
I think a better set for Yukong would be two pieces of the Wastelander of Banditry Desert set for the Imaginary damage bonus and then two pieces of Musketeer of Wild Wheat for the Attack boost. None of her buffs are based on her stats, and thus her only other valuable stats would be Energy Regeneration, Speed, and Attack to have her deal additional damage and better control how she maneuvers in a team.
It would also be possible to run her on a four-piece Wastelander of Banditry Desert set, but she wouldn’t benefit from the passive bonus entirely as her kit rarely requires her to use her Basic Attack. It could also prove useful for the Speed bonus.
As for Ornaments, I’m not exactly sure what set would be best for her. The Sprightly Vonwacq could be a possible set since it increases Energy Regeneration and could forward Yukong’s turn by 40% with a high enough Speed stat.
Another viable set is the Space Sealing Station which boosts Attack and can further buff Attack at a high enough Speed value. This would give her more overall damage output.
The other two sets that could work for a more damage-oriented Yukong would be Celestial Differentiator which boosts Critical Damage or Inert Salsotto that boosts Critical Rate.
Her Planar Sphere Ornament should definitely have Imaginary Damage Boost as its main stat. The Link Rope could have a main stat of either Attack or Energy Regeneration.
I think Yukong can be a valuable character for players in Honkai: Star Rail. Although her buffs require a bit finessing with Speed stats to best utilize her kit, she increases a lot of offensive stats for characters.
Furthermore, her elemental type of Imaginary means players have more means to break through enemies’ Toughness shields. Since the only other Imaginary characters aside from Yukong are five-star Welt and five-star Luocha, she is a much easier-to-gain option for Imaginary typing.
With all this in mind, I believe Yukong is a must-pull character for players.
What do you think? Will you be pulling for Yukong this banner? Share your thoughts with us in the comments or in our Boss Rush Discord!
Featured Image: HoYoverse
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