When playing Genshin Impact, players often tend to focus almost exclusively on damage dealing. However, with every good DPS character in the game, an amazing support character offers defensive benefits.
Shield users may be overlooked by fans in the community, but they offer a service that can seldom be utilized outside of crystallize reactions. Using shields as a matter of talents rather than reactions, shield users are the only characters that can reliably stop the damage from ever reaching the character on the field. That said, some players still have trouble choosing which shield users offer better shields than others.
Honorary Shield Users
While most characters on this list make for full-blown shield users available directly at pull, some in Genshin Impact require more effort to unlock their shielding abilities. Most of the time, these characters will need constellations to unlock the shielding portions of their talents.
At constellation 4, Kaeya will automatically create a shield when his health goes below 20%. A perk of this shield is that it can absorb Cryo damage with increased efficiency. Nonetheless, the health requirement makes Kaeya unusable as a shield user.
At constellation 4, Yanfei will automatically create a shield whenever she uses her elemental burst. Like Kaeya's shield, Yanfei absorbs Pyro energy with increased efficiency. However, unlike Kaeya, because her shield is tied to burst usage, Yanfei can be used as a shield user.
Of the full-time shield users, Beidou is the only one among Electro users. That said, her shielding abilities are the most limited among Genshin Impact's entire cast.
To be exact, Beidou is an active shield user; she requires the player to actively be holding her elemental skill to use her shield. Obviously, the flaws of this are apparent: the player will be unable to move, attack, or bring her shield to a different character. Nonetheless, Beidou's shield can be used for its stall factor, making more time while another character is on cooldown.
Unlike Beidou's case, Diona's shields are passive. Players simply need to use her elemental skill, and the ice shield will automatically be issued for a temporary amount of time. As such, at any point during the shield's lifetime, it can be transferred to another character for extra protection.
That said, there are a few flaws in Diona's shielding abilities. For one, players will find that her shield time will be short; using Diona as defensive support will require constant reapplication. At that, her shields also skew towards the lower side of the spectrum, protecting the player less than others. When using Diona, it may be better to use her for either her Cryo application or her healing; both will offer better results than her shield abilities.
To put it bluntly, most people underestimate Xinyan's abilities. Players often view her talents as being underwhelming, overly complicated, or even useless. However, these kinds of players are indeed missing out on a fairly good shield user.
Interestingly enough, Xinyan's shield becomes stronger the more opponents are around her. Connected to her elemental skill, Xinyan's shields both infuse her with Pyro and protect her against Pyro with increased efficiency. In the end, this means that Xinyan makes for an incredibly offensive shield user, especially against crowds.
Of the entirety of Genshin Impact's shield users, Noelle may be the most versatile. Her elemental skill applies a shield and acts as the primary source of her healing abilities. In other words, she has many of the qualities of Diona, just at a stronger level.
The benefits of this kind of versatility should be especially apparent. After all, it is the reason why she makes a great healer. She can take the field longer than most other healers, dealing damage and stopping the opponent's damage in the process. Of all four-star characters, Noelle offers the best shield quality.
It would not be false to say that shielding is Zhongli's main character trait. One way of looking at it, Zhongli is the only five-star character to offer shielding services; players can expect his shields to be of higher quality than most four-star characters. In fact, objectively speaking, Zhongli's shields are the best in the game.
The god of Geo himself, Zhongli has the highest base shield strength, with 150% damage absorption against all elemental and physical damage. This also comes with the offensive benefit of reducing elemental resistance of opponents nearby, making for a dangerous combination with some of Genshin Impact's top DPS characters. Ultimately, no shield user can compete with the man that started the genre in the first place.