The best builds for Shenhe in Genshin Impact

Genshin Impact Shenhe
(Image credit: miHoYo)

Looking for the best build for Shenhe in Genshin Impact? This Cryo polearm-wielder is one of the game's newest characters, arriving alongside Yun Jin in the 2.4 update (opens in new tab). So if you bypassed both Arataki Itto (opens in new tab) and Gorou's banners in the hope of snagging this new five-star Cryo hero, you might also want to know the best way to build her.

Shenhe comes from a branch family of a clan of exorcists, and the Cloud Retainer has taken her on as a disciple. We've also listed all of her skills and Ascension materials. So if you're ready to dive in, here's the best build for Genshin Impact's Shenhe. 

Builds

The best Genshin Impact Shenhe build 

One of Shenhe's strengths is that she can buff other Cryo characters with the Icy Quill effect from her Elemental Skill, Spring Spirit Summoning. She can also help reduce both physical and Cryo damage to other party members.

Cryo Support

  • Weapon: Calamity Queller 

This five-star polearm drops alongside Shenhe in the 2.4 update. It boasts an attack percentage boost, increases Elemental Damage after using an Elemental Skill, and, most importantly, grants all characters stacks of Consummation. Each stack increases ATK by 3.2% up to a maximum of six, and the effect is doubled when the character is not on the field.

An alternative to this is the four-star Lithic Spear. This also increases attack damage and while you won't be buffing other characters with it, Shenhe will gain an ATK and CRIT buff from other party members that hail from Liyue. 

  • Artifacts: (2) Blizzard Strayer, (2) Noblesse Oblige 

The first set is fairly self-explanatory. The Blizzard Strayer two-set gives you a flat 15% buff to your Cryo damage. The four-set could also work but pairing it with the Noblesse Oblige two-set gives you a generous 20% damage buff to your Elemental Burst.

An alternative is to pair Blizzard Strayer with Gladiator's Finale. Shenhe's Icy Quill is buffed by her attack, and this artifact's two-piece gives you a not-too-shabby 18% attack buff.

How to unlock

(Image credit: miHoYo)

How to get Shenhe in Genshin Impact 

Shenhe's banner is now live with the release of the 2.4 update. The Transcendent One Returns is expected to run until January 25 so you have a few weeks to wish for her. She's joined by Yun Jin (opens in new tab), the four-star Cryo character also new in 2.4, Ningguang, and Chongyun. 

Abilities

Shenhe's abilities 

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Normal Attack: Dawnstar Shooter
NormalPerforms up to five consecutive spear strikes.
ChargedConsumes a certain amount of Stamina to lunge forward, dealing damage to opponents along the way.
PlungingPlunges from mid-air to strike the ground below, damaging opponents along the path and dealing AoE DMG upon impact.
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Elemental Skill
Spring Spirit SummoningGrants all nearby party members the Icy Quill effect and deals Cryo DMG in different ways based on whether it is pressed or held. Press: Rushes forward together with a Talisman Spirit, dealing Cryo DMG to opponents along the path. Hold: Commands the Talisman Spirit to deal AoE Cryo DMG.
Icy QuillWhen Normal, Charged, and Plunging Attacks, Elemental Skills, and Elemental Bursts deal Cryo DMG to opponents, the DMG dealt is increased based on Shenhe's current ATK. The Icy Quill effect will be cleared once its duration ends or after a certain number of stacks are consumed. Holding rather than pressing grants a longer duration and more stacks generated. When one Cryo DMG instance strikes multiple opponents, stacks will be consumed based on the number of opponents hit. The Icy Quill effects and stacks on every party member will be counted independently.
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Elemental Burst: Divine Maiden's Deliverance
Unleashes the power of the Talisman Spirit, allowing it to roam free in this plane, dealing AoE Cryo DMG. The Talisman Spirit then creates a field that decreases the Cryo RES and Physical RES of opponents within it. It also periodically deals Cryo DMG to all opponents within the field.
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Passives
Precise Comings and GoingsGains 25% more rewards when dispatched on a Liyue Expedition that takes longer than 20 hours.
Deific EmbraceAn active character within the field created by Divine Maiden's Deliverance gains 10% Cryo DMG Bonus.
Spirit Communion SealAfter Shenhe uses Spring Spirit Summoning, she will grant all nearby party members the following effects. Press: Elemental Skill and Elemental Burst DMG increased by 15% for 10s. Hold: Normal, Charged, and Plunging Attack DMG increased by 15% for 15s. When either effect is active, activating either effect again will refresh the already-active effect's duration.
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Constellations
Clarity of HeartSpring Spirit Summoning can be used 1 more time.
Centered SpiritDivine Maiden's Deliverance lasts for 6 seconds longer. Active characters within the skill's field deal 15% increased Cryo CRIT DMG.
SeclusionIncreases the Level of Spring Spirit Summoning by 3. Maximum upgrade level is 15.
InsightWhen characters under the effect of Icy Quill applied by Shenhe trigger its DMG Bonus effects, Shenhe will gain a Skyfrost Mantra stack: When Shenhe uses Spring Spriit Summoning, she will consume all stacks of Skyfrost Mantra, increasing the DMG of that Spring Spirit Summoning by 5% for each stack consumed. Max 50 stacks. Stacks last for 60s.
Divine AttainmentIncreases the Level of Divine Maiden's Deliverance by 3. Maximum upgrade level is 15.
Mystical AbandonWhen characters trigger Icy Quill's effects using Normal and Charged Attack DMG, no Icy Quill stacks will be used up.

Ascension materials

(Image credit: MiHoYo)

Shenhe's Ascension materials 

Character

To level up Shenhe you'll need to find specific Ascension materials. The Shivada Jade items are dropped by Cryo Hypostases and Regisvines, while Qingxin is a flower found growing on high stone peaks, either around Jueyun Karst or Guyun Stone Forest. You'll also need: 

  • Dragonheir's False Fin
  • Whopperflower/Shimmering/Energy Nectar

The Dragonheir's False Fin is dropped from the level 30+ Bathysmal Vishap Herd boss in Enkanomiya. Meanwhile, the Nectar items are dropped by whopperflower enemies. 

Talents

Likewise, you'll need specific items to level up Shenhe's talents. These are:

  • Teachings/Guide/Philosophy of Prosperity
  • Whopperflower/Shimmering/Energy Nectar
  • Hellfire Butterfly
  • Crown of Insight

The Prosperity items can be pilfered from the Taishan Mansion domain on Mondays and Thursdays, and, as mentioned above, the Nectar items are dropped from whopperflower enemies. The Hellfire Butterfly is a reward for defeating the weekly boss La Signora at level 70 or above. Lastly, the Crown of Insight is a reward for upgrading the Frostbearing Tree in Dragonspine or the Sacred Sakura in Inazuma. You can also get it from various seasonal activities, like Midsummer Island Adventure or Thunder Sojourn. 

Sarah James
Guides Writer

Sarah started as a freelance writer in 2018, writing for PCGamesN, TechRadar, GamingBible, Red Bull Gaming and more. In 2021, she was offered a full-time position on the PC Gamer team where she takes every possible opportunity to talk about World of Warcraft and Elden Ring. When not writing guides, most of her spare time is spent in Azeroth—though she's quite partial to JRPGs too. One of her fondest hopes is to one day play through the ending of Final Fantasy X without breaking down into a sobbing heap. She probably has more wolves in Valheim than you.