Though it is possible to play Zhongli as both a Main DPS and a Burst DPS Support, I would greatly recommend focusing on a Burst DPS Support build instead. A Burst DPS support build is much easier to use, particularly with a Geo DPS character such as Ningguang or C6 Noelle, as the Geo synergies will buff both characters in your party. I will still include a Main DPS guide if you would like to pursue that build instead. This guide will give you an understanding of building him for Sub DPS Burst DMG and Main DPS, including varied weapons and artifacts to suit your team's needs. There will also be options for free to play players

Zhongli has the potential to do insane damage with each ultimate (particularly if he has high Energy Recharge or other characters in your party that buff Energy Regeneration). Zhongli's pillar can do consistent damage as well, even when you switch to other characters, giving him his Sub DPS nature. I use Zhongli in my party and he assumes the role of a Sub DPS Burst character, with a strong shield that allows my Main DPS Tartaglia to deal consistent DMG without taking any from enemies. He can consistently do 65k in Teyvat per ultimate, or 80k with Ningguang's shield buff


 The weapons to use for Zhongli are rather similar, as he benefits greatly from a CRIT Rate weapon to allow him to CRIT with each Ultimate. 

sub zhongli weapons copy

One of the best weapons for Zhongli would definitely be the Deathmatch, due to its CRIT Rate sub-stat that allows for the desired 1:2 ratio for CRIT Rate: CRIT DMG. I personally use Deathmatch which allows for my CRIT Rate to be about 69%, almost always guaranteeing a CRIT with each Ultimate. This weapon is obtained from the Battle Pass and if you already have Zhongli, you might want to consider purchasing the Battle Pass to obtain the weapon. You can also read my guide on the BP weapons here.

The Royal Spear is listed here due to its passive that increases CRIT Rate upon dealing damage to an opponent that has a maximum of 5 stacks. This can be obtained from the Starglitter Shop, I will be writing an article soon about the various weapons you can purchase from the shop and their various character recommendations. 

The Vortex Vanquisher is the 5 star polearm that was released along with Zhongli and is no longer available under the standard or weapon banner. This weapon is designed for Zhongli and enhances his shield strength, but if you do not have the weapon, the other weapons work well too. 

I would not recommend the Prototype Starglitter (craftable) due to the inherent requirement of using elemental skills to increase DMG. 

main zhongli weapons copy

The Deathmatch works well on a Main DPS build of Zhongli as well.

The Crescent Pike has a Physical DMG bonus sub-stat that Main DPS Zhongli could benefit from and can be obtained from crafting. The polearm prototype can be bought in the souvenir shop as well as the Frostbearing Tree rewards. 

Halberd is a 3 star weapon that is easily obtainable from opening chests with an ATK% sub-stat, as well as an additional DMG% for normal attacks


For a Sub DPS Zhongli, the best artifact sets to use would be a 2-set Archaic Petra and a 2-set Noblesse Oblige. This allows for an Elemental Burst DMG bonus, as well as a Geo DMG bonus such that he will allow for higher damage numbers when using his ultimate.   

archaic petra

 The Archaic Petra set can be obtained from the Domain of Guyun, you can view the guide on completing this domain here

noblesse oblige

 The Noblesse Oblige set can be obtained from the Clear Pool and Mountain Cavern domain, you can view the guide on completing this domain here.

The stats and sub-stats that you should prioritise are as below: 

  • Flower sub-stats: Crit DMG, Crit Rate and HP 
  • Feather stat: ATK; sub-stat: Crit DMG, HP
  • Watch stat: HP%
  • Goblet stat: Geo DMG Bonus (can be any artifact set, as long as the main stat is Geo DMG)
  • Mask stat: Crit DMG or Crit Rate (based on your weapon and sub-stats)

Personally, I have not obtained a Geo DMG Bonus artifact, so I am using a HP% artifact for the goblet as well. Do note that as of the new 1.3 Patch, Zhongli's ultimate and shield strength scales off his Maximum HP, so do ensure he has high HP. About 30k HP is a good balance, otherwise too much would sacrifice his ATK% which is what his ultimate also scales off. 

For a Main DPS Zhongli, you should have a 4-set Gladiator's Finale set. This allows for a higher ATK percentage as a Main DPS. 

gladiators finale set

Gladiator's Finale set can be obtained from defeating any bosses (such as Hypostases, Regisvines, Oceanid, Childe, Stormterror and Wolf). 

The stats and sub-stats that you should prioritise are below:

  • Flower sub-stats: Crit DMG, ATK
  • Feather stat: ATK; sub-stat: Crit Rate, Crit DMG, ATK% 
  • Watch stat: ATK Percentage 
  • Goblet stat: Geo DMG Bonus (can be any artifact set, as long as the main stat is Geo DMG)
  • Mask stat: Crit DMG or Crit Rate (based on your weapon and sub-stats)

If you are just starting to play Genshin Impact, you can use Gladiator's set as well for increased ATK percentages.


zhongli talent

For Sub DPS Zhongli: 

Planet Befall > Dominus Lapidis > Rain of Stone 

 Prioritise his ultimate, then his shield strength. You should switch out to your Main DPS character after gaining his shield for normal/charged attacks. My Zhongli has Talent Level 9 for Planet Befall, 8 for Dominus Lapidis and 3 for Rain of Stone.

For Main DPS Zhongli: 

Planet Befall > Rain of Stone > Dominus Lapidis

Prioritise his ultimate before normal attacks.  

Party Setup

Both Sub and Main DPS Zhongli's will benefit from having another Geo character on the team to benefit from Enduring Rock. Particularly, I would recommend using Ningguang due to her amazing abilities as a Main DPS and the Geo DMG bonus that she gives after running through her shield. Personally, I like using Zhongli with Ningguang in Spiral Abyss or in domains that buff Geo DMG such as Clear Pool and Mountain Cavern.  


zhongli materials


Zhongli is definitely one of the strongest 5 star characters in Genshin Impact, after the buff he received in the 1.3 patch. If you already have Zhongli, I would strongly recommend building him as a Sub DPS character, with his tanky shield and insane Ultimate DMG. Thanks for reading, we hope you have enjoyed this character build guide and stay tuned for more characters/domain guides. Let us know in the comments if there are any other guides you are looking for!

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