Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1: Should you pull for Acheron, Luocha, and their signature Light Cones?

This upcoming banner is really enticing, featuring a new game-changing DPS in Acheron and the best healer in the game in Luocha.

The first half of Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1 will see the debut of Acheron and a rerun for Luocha. With such an enticing banner, we're here to help you decide on who to spend your Stellar Jade on. (Photos: HoYoverse)
The first half of Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1 will see the debut of Acheron and a rerun for Luocha. With such an enticing banner, we're here to help you decide on who to spend your Stellar Jade on. (Photos: HoYoverse)

Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1 is almost upon us and its first half banner features one of the best 5-star pairings we've seen in a while.

Making her debut will be the Lightning Nihility character Acheron, who will be shaking up the metagame with the most unique kit in the game so far. Meanwhile, getting his first rerun will be Luocha, hands-down the best healer in the game.

With version 2.1 also being Honkai: Star Rail's first anniversary patch, there will be plenty of free Star Rail Special Passes and Stellar Jade for players to use in the upcoming banners. The question is, of course, who to spend them on? Read on and we'll help you decide.

Need a universal Nihility DPS? Get Acheron

Acheron wields the Lightning element and follows the Path of Nihility, being the first character of her Path designed for a purely DPS role. Her unique kit is centered around inflicting debuffs on enemies to charge her powerful ultimate, which lets her deal a huge amount of damage that reduces enemy Toughness even if they aren't weak to the Lightning element.

Unlike all other characters in the game, Acheron doesn't have an energy gauge and instead relies on stacks of Slashed Dream to charge up her ultimate. She can gain stacks of Slashed Dream when she uses her skill or when her allies inflict debuffs on enemies.

Acheron will also build up stacks of Crimson Knot on enemies hit by her skill or inflicted with debuffs by her allies. Crimson Knot increases the amount of DMG received by an enemy from her ultimate.

When Acheron reaches 9 stacks of Slashed Dream, she will be able to use her powerful ultimate. It will unleash four attacks, with the first three dealing DMG to a single target while the final attack deals DMG to all enemies on the field.

Acheron's ultimate will also reduce enemy Toughness regardless of their elemental weaknesses and will also reduce their All-Type RES for the duration of the ability.

Unlike most other DPS characters in the game who typically want a Harmony character supporting them, Acheron's kit is designed to synergise better with her fellow Nihility characters. Not only will Nihility characters reliably inflict debuffs on enemies to charge up her ultimate, one of Acheron's major Traces also gives her a massive DMG boost if she has one or two other Nihility characters in the party.

Finally, Acheron has one of the best Techniques in the game. When used against standard enemy mobs in the Overworld or in the Simulated Universe, it will immediately defeat them and grant the player all rewards from the battle.

When used against all other enemies it can't automatically defeat, it will deal Lightning DMG to all enemies and reduce their Toughness regardless of their elemental weaknesses, as well as grant Acheron 1 stack of Slashed Dream and inflict a random enemy with 1 stack of Crimson Knot.

Acheron presents players with an entirely different take on how to play a DPS character. With her reliance on inflicting enemies with debuffs, you will be incentivised to instead run with Nihility characters like Silver Wolf or Pela to reduce enemy DEF to boost her damage output.

And even without a Harmony character supporting her, Acheron still has sky-high damage potential. Not only that, she also boasts hands-down the best animations in the entire game so far. If there is one character we can recommend trying to pull in version 2.1, then it will be Acheron.

Need the best healer in the game? Get Luocha

Luocha wields the Imaginary element, follows the Path of Abundance, and is hands-down the best healer in the game.

He is able to heal low health allies outside of his turn, summon a field that heals all allies whenever enemies are attacked, remove debuffs from allies, and remove buffs from enemies. His ability to heal off-turn also makes him a skill point-positive support, further boosting his already strong utility.

Luocha’s bread-and-butter is his skill, which restores a single ally’s HP and removes a debuff on them when his A2 Trace is unlocked.

Whenever an ally’s HP falls below 50%, Luocha automatically casts his skill on them without consuming a skill point. Keep in mind that Luocha’s auto-heal ability has a 2-turn cooldown after it has been triggered.

Meanwhile, Luocha’s ultimate removes 1 buff from all enemies while also dealing a hefty amount of Imaginary DMG.

While Luocha’s skill and ultimate are straightforward enough abilities, they also work into his Talent to help him provide sustained healing for his teammates.

Whenever Luocha casts his skill or ultimate, he gains 1 stack of Abyss Flower. When Abyss Flower reaches 2 stacks, Luocha consumes them to summon a field for 2 turns that heals an ally whenever they attack an enemy.

Finally, using Luocha’s Technique to start a battle lets him immediately summon the field from his Talent.

While pulling for DPS characters is important, getting strong supports is still paramount. And in that regard, Luocha is one of the best supports you can get.

With his ability to keep the entire team alive without having to use skill points, he will let you focus fully on offense without having to worry about enemy attacks taking out one of your characters. So if you want to spend your Stellar Jade on Luocha, then he is more than worth it.

Should you pull for Acheron and Luocha's signature Light Cones?

(Photos: HoYoverse)
(Photos: HoYoverse)

All DPS characters need their signature Light Cone in order to reach their full potential, and this is especially true for Acheron.

Her signature, Along the Passing Shore, passively increases her Crit DMG by 36%. In addition, it also lets her inflict the 'Empty Bubbles' debuff on enemies she attacks for 1 turn. Enemies inflicted with Empty Bubbles receive 24% more DMG and an additional 24% more ultimate DMG from Acheron.

The best thing about Acheron's signature is that it lets her receive 2 stacks of Slashed Dream whenever she uses her skill, letting her charge up her ultimate faster. Of course, the 36% Crit DMG and huge DMG buffs are massive boosts too.

But what makes Acheron's signature so important is that she doesn't really have a strong alternative for it. Other Nihility Light Cones currently available can only provide her either a DMG boost or an additional debuff to increase stacks of Slashed Dream when she attacks, but not both at the same time.

If you can't get Acheron's signature, then your best alternative will be the 4-star Light Cone Good Night, Sleep Well, which provides a DMG boost for every debuff on an enemy target attacked by its wielder.

At Superimposition level 5, this Light Cone provides a 72% DMG boost when an enemy has 3 debuffs. However, it doesn't help Acheron gain more stacks of Slashed Dream and doesn't provide her with Crit stats either, making it a significant step down from her signature.

In stark contrast, Luocha doesn't need his signature to shine, though it is still his best option. His signature, Echoes of the Coffin, increases his ATK by 24% and regenerates 3 energy for each different enemy he hits with an attack with a maximum of 9 energy regenerated per attack. In addition, this Light Cone also gives a party-wide 12 bonus Speed whenever Luocha uses his ultimate.

While Luocha reaches his full potential with his signature, he does not need it due to how strong his base kit already is. Instead, we recommend going for 4-star Abundance Light Cones like Perfect Timing, Quid Pro Quo, Post-Op Conversation, Warmth Shortens Cold Nights, or even the 3-star Light Cone Multiplication.

Honkai: Star Rail version 2.1 will be released on 27 March and will see the release of three new characters in Acheron, Aventurine, and Gallagher, reruns for Luocha and Jingliu, and two new areas in Penacony. Not only that, version 2.1 will be Honkai: Star Rail's first-year anniversary patch and as such will give players tons of rewards!

For more information on what's to come in version 2.1, check here.

Once version 2.1 drops on 27 March, then the wait begins for version 2.2 in May featuring two new 5-star characters in Robin and Boothill.

Yan Ku is a full-time dog parent, part-time (gacha) gamer, and part-time writer.

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