Furina May Be the Most Compelling Archon in Genshin Impact
Screenshot by Siliconera

Furina May Be the Most Compelling Archon in Genshin Impact

Throughout theFontaine storyline, Furina seemed a fascinating figure not only due to being the Hydro Archon, but due to her personality. Now that the “Masquerade of the Guilty” Genshin Impact Archon Quests appeared, it is clear that Furina may be the most compelling Archon in the game, as well as one of the best characters HoYoVerse created.

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Editor’s Note: There will be spoilers for the Fontaine storyline and Furina in Genshin Impact below.

As a refresher, when we’re introduced to Furina in Fontaine, the Hydro Archon came across as haughty and dramatic. She might have even been considered a bit of a brat. There was an arrogance that set her apart from the friendly Venti, the dignified Zhongli, the detached Raiden Shogun, and the warm Nahida. She seemed like, well, a typical god. Someone who considered her above ordinary humans and perhaps a bit self serving.

Screenshot by Siliconera
Screenshot by Siliconera

It’s only as the fifth act begins that we realize it’s a performance and persona maintained throughout the first four acts of the chapter four Archon Quests. We’re constantly see her playing the part. She’s doing her job as an Archon, of course. We’re seeing her brand of justice. She seems appropriately concerned about the prophecy facing Fontaine and threatening to raise the waters and raze its people. But there’s a detachment there. I even felt like maybe she seemed to be purposely pushing people away or putting them on edge after the initial encounters. 

But it’s because of this side of her that we get to witness how fascinating and strong she is. Furina kept up her performance for 500 years. Even when the end approached and the trial she’d been waiting for was being prepared and started, she was keeping her guard up. When Neuvillette started to pick at her affairs and investigations, she didn’t unravel. It’s only when the Traveler came to Fontaine, the time Focalors needed came up, and that trial with everyone began that the truth was exposed. Not to mention when she was going through that, the people she was connected to and relied upon did all turn against her, but she didn’t immediately crumble and falter.

This meant once we got to “The Opera of Noirceur and Blancheur,” it was especially heartbreaking and we really got to understand Furina for the first time in Genshin Impact. After Focalors explained how she divided herself up into her divine part and the human Furina, we saw how Furina took on the challenge of playing this incredibly lonely, trapped, suffering role willingly for 500 years. She even said herself, “If there were scales, with all the people of Fontaine on one side, and my pain on the other… Is it not obvious where the scales should tilt?” We watched as she had to develop her persona and become the flippant and arrogant Archon people expected. How she still snuck in moments of kindness, such as visiting Deoteria to check on her son and pushing for hydrological research. 

In these sections we also see how she needs to push herself. Going one more day. Constantly wondering if people see through her mask. Especially when we see she’s reached “scene 182376“ by the time the Traveler comes to Fontaine. To hit these moments and realize the person who seemed like she could have been careless perhaps cared more than anyone and was breaking down daily when trying to stay strong was an exceptional moment. 

This woman who seemed so put together, so sure of herself, all the while wasn’t. But instead of giving in or letting any of that show, she pushed onward. Knowing the stakes of the situation, she allowed herself to continue to suffer and endear unimaginable mental pain, because she considered it the right thing to do for the people and the country. Considering the approach of other Archons throughout the story, I feel HoYoVerse really did offer an unexpected and touching approach. Especially if we recall what the situation with Makoto and Ei in Inazuma, which was another two Archon situation.

Which makes the “Finale” of the “Masquerade of the Guilty” even more satisfying. Focalors, with the help of Furina’s hard work, Neuvillette, and the Traveler, saves Fontaine! All is well! But more importantly, Furina gets to rest. For the first time in all of these Archon Quests, she doesn’t have to be on-screen playing a part. She got to leave and move out of the lonely opera house that acted as her cage. Neuvillette is taking care of her needs, so she finally has the freedom she was denied, and is stepping up as the Hydro Sovereign going forward. 

Furina gets to be herself, and that could mean the Hydro Archon could prove to be even more interesting going forward since she’s no longer tied to that role in Genshin Impact. She could go anywhere and do anything now that her life is her own. HoYoVerse created a fascinating character who is now full of potential, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Genshin Impact is available for the PS4, PS5, PC, and mobile devices. The Furina banner runs in-game until November 28, 2023.

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Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.