Hi, it’s me, Ana. The person behind the screen writing this post. As a culture writer at Polygon, I’m no stranger to covering and dissecting fandom. In the past, I’ve covered topics like Mario cum pipe memes and Sonic characters going to the mall. But now the Genshin Impact fandom has given me the opportunity, no, the honor, to alert you to the news that we can now see a an inch from Albedo’s thighs between her tailored shorts and her thigh-high boots.
The blonde, ponytailed swordsman is known for both his artistic abilities and his research skills as an alchemist. Albedo appears in the game wearing high boots, long socks, and shorts. Usually his socks cover the section of skin between his shorts and boots. But on Saturday, Hoyoverse posted the official art on their Bilibili account to celebrate reaching 13 million followers. The art depicted the alchemist sitting on a couch with his socks off, revealing that single inch of skin.
That is all. That’s the news. But the fandom has responded to the inch of skin chalk with an unquenchable thirst. Albedo trended on Twitter on Monday, with her name surpassing 27,000 tweets online, as fans posted new illustrations, cosplays, and even memes about her thighs.
Some people also poked fun at the fan response with cute memes. One Reddit user likened the response to that of a Victorian man seeing an ankle, as all this thirst came from a single inch of skin.
The intensity of the response is ironic given that Hoyoverse dropped a lot of (arguably) bigger news over the weekend. The developer hosted a live stream on Saturday that revealed a ton of new information related to Genshin Impact big new Sumeru update, introducing a new region, new characters, and a new elemental power, among other additions. But honestly? Fuck that. Because all of that news pales in comparison to Albedo’s thighs.
One can’t help but feel that Hoyoverse has an awareness of what it’s doing, because this is far from the first time the company has released fan art that precipitates similar responses. Last month the company Anemo Shikanoin Heizou Catalyst Shared Art which showed the detective sitting in a tree, flushed, with his mouth open. A few weeks before that, we got the birthday art from Childe who showed him with his jacket unbuttonedwhich once again provoked communal thirst.
Now all we need is for Hoyoverse to bring back Albedo’s banner so we can all wish for it.