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Sethos Quick Guide

Updated for Version 4.7
Sethos Quick Guide

Sethos is a 4-star Electro Bow character in Genshin Impact who has two DPS playstyles and unique mechanics involving Energy gain and loss. Learn about Sethos’s best builds, best weapons, best artifacts, and best teams in this quick guide.

Note that the information given may change if new discoveries are made. More extensive testing is in progress.

Join our Discord to participate in the theorycrafting process.

New Content


Cloudforged
Although this weapon was created with Sethos in mind, it is significantly worse than Slingshot, an easily obtainable 3-star weapon.

Clorinde
Despite both Clorinde and Sethos being usable in Quicken teams, they have no specific synergy with each other and you should avoid playing them together.

Infographic

Sethos Infographic


Design: cuppacote
Content: quinslay, irokei

Character Overview

Playstyles

Normal Attack DPS

This playstyle utilizes Sethos’s Burst to convert his Normal Attacks to Electro damage, as well as their damage type to Charged Attack damage. Because of the fast nature of his Normal Attack sequence, it is easy to trigger Aggravate on many of his Normal Attacks.

Pros

  • Higher overall DPS over a sustained rotation
  • Lower ER requirements overall

Cons

  • Combo cancels that are required for maximum DPS potential
  • Longer field time

Charged Shot DPS

This playstyle utilizes Sethos’s A4 Passive to increase the damage of his special Charged Shot “Shadowpiercing Shot” and deal a large amount of damage with up to 4 Shadowpiercing Shots every 15s. Since doing this typically takes ~4s, Sethos’s teams with this playstyle tend to be more quickswap in nature.

Pros

  • Low field-time requirements that allow for flexibility in team rotations and teambuilding
  • High amounts of front-loaded damage
  • Lower reliance on player skill

Cons

  • Lower overall DPS than his Normal Attack DPS playstyle
  • Higher Energy consumption per rotation compared to his Normal Attack DPS playstyle
  • Reliance on either Fischl or his C6 to have manageable ER requirements while maintaining decent DPS

Talents

Level and Talent Priority

Because Sethos strongly prefers Quicken-based teams, you should raise him to Level 90.

Normal Attack DPS
Character Level > Burst > Normal Attack > Skill

Charged Shot DPS
Character Level > Normal Attack > Skill

In a Normal Attack DPS playstyle, you should level Sethos’s Burst Talent level since the EM scaling on his Electro-converted Normal Attacks scale with his Burst level. The ATK scaling from his Normal Attack talent is not as significant.

In either playstyle, Sethos’s Skill does not contribute a noteworthy portion of his damage; leveling it is optional.

Talent Overview

Normal Attack
Normal Attack | Royal Reed Archery

Normal Attack
Performs up to 3 consecutive shots with a bow.

Charged Attack
Performs a more precise Aimed Shot with increased DMG.
While aiming, the power of Electro will accumulate on the arrowhead before the arrow is fired. Has different effects based on how long the energy has been charged:

  • Charge Level 1: Fires off an arrow carrying the power of lightning that deals Electro DMG.
  • Charge Level 2: Fires off a Shadowpiercing Shot which can pierce enemies, dealing Electro DMG to enemies along its path. After the Shadowpiercing Shot is fully charged, Sethos cannot move around.

Plunging Attack
Fires off a shower of arrows in mid-air before falling and striking the ground, dealing AoE DMG upon impact.

Almost all of Sethos’s damage comes from his Normal Attack Talent. As a Charged Shot DPS unit, he deals damage via his enhanced Charged Shots (“Shadowpiercing Shots”); as a Normal Attack DPS, his main source of damage are his Electro-converted Normal Attacks.

Shadowpiercing Shots take a whopping 6s to fully charge without consuming Energy. With Sethos’s A1 Passive, his Shadowpiercing Shots consume up to 20 Energy and charge almost instantly. As a result, Sethos does not use his Burst in a Charged Shot DPS playstyle. 

If you use Sethos’s Burst, his Normal Attacks are converted to Electro. Additionally, he cannot enter aim mode during his Burst, which removes the possibility of aim-mode cancels (also called RR cancels). His fast multi-hit Normal Attacks are great at triggering Aggravate. It is optimal to cancel his Normal Attack string before the third attack, since it has a relatively long animation.

Elemental Skill
Elemental Skill | Ancient Rite: The Thundering Sands

Gathers the might of thunder, dealing AoE Electro DMG and quickly retreating. If this attack triggers Electro-Charged, Superconduct, Overloaded, Quicken, Aggravate, or Electro Swirl reactions, Sethos recovers a certain amount of Elemental Energy.

Sethos’s Skill is a simple damaging attack that creates 2 Electro Particles and regenerates 12 Flat Energy if it triggers an Electro reaction; this can usually be done twice per rotation. You should take extra precautions to ensure that this Skill triggers an Elemental Reaction, as his ER requirements are significantly higher without the additional Energy. This is generally not an issue in Quicken teams.

With a Charged Shot playstyle, it is sometimes important that Sethos’s Skill generates 20 Energy. In order to do this, Sethos needs at least 134% Energy Recharge.

Elemental Burst
Elemental Burst | Secret Rite: Twilight Shadowpiercer

Perform a secret rite, entering the “Twilight Meditation” state, during which Sethos’s Normal Attacks will be converted into enemy-piercing Dusk Bolts: Deal Electro DMG to opponents in its path, with DMG increased based on Sethos’s Elemental Mastery.

Sethos cannot perform Aimed Shots while in this state.
DMG dealt by Dusk Bolts is considered Charged Attack DMG.
This effect will be canceled when Sethos leaves the field.

Sethos’s Burst does not deal damage. Instead, it converts Sethos’s Normal Attacks to Electro, makes them deal Charged Attack damage, and increases their damage based on Sethos’s EM. Sethos cannot enter aiming mode during this stance.

Ascension 1 Passive
Ascension 1 Passive | Black Kite’s Enigma

When Aiming, the charging time is decreased by 0.285s based on each point of Sethos’s current Elemental Energy. Charging time can be reduced to a minimum of 0.3s through this method and a maximum of 20 Energy can be tallied. If a Shadowpiercing Shot is fired, consume the tallied amount of Elemental Energy; if it is a Charge Level 1 shot, then consume 50% of the tallied amount of Elemental Energy.

This passive makes Sethos’s Charged Shot playstyle possible by decreasing his Charged Shot charge time to a minimum of 0.3s. Achieving this short charge time consumes 20 Energy, which makes it impossible to use Sethos’s Burst in a Charged Shot DPS playstyle.

Ascension 4 Passive
Ascension 4 Passive | The Sand King’s Boon

Sethos gains the “Scorching Sandshade” effect, increasing the DMG dealt by Shadowpiercing Shots by 700% of Sethos’s Elemental Mastery.

The Scorching Sandshade effect will be canceled when any of the following conditions are met:

  • 5s after a Shadowpiercing Shot first hits an opponent.
  • After 4 Shadowpiercing Shots strike opponents.

When a Shadowpiercing Shot affected by Scorching Sandshade first hits an opponent, Sethos will regain Scorching Sandshade after 15s.

This passive gives Sethos a window every 15s to shoot 4 buffed Shadowpiercing Shots that deal significantly more damage based on Sethos’s EM. It’s not worth it to use Sethos’s Shadowpiercing Shots unless his A4 Passive is active.

Constellations

Constellation 1
Constellation 1 | Sealed Shrine’s Spiritsong

The CRIT Rate of Shadowpiercing Shot is increased by 15%.

A very simple yet noteworthy DPS increase for Sethos’s Charged Shot playstyle. It does not affect his Normal Attack DPS playstyle until C6.

Constellation 2
Constellation 2 | Papyrus Scripture of Silent Secrets

When any of the following conditions are met, Sethos gains a 15% Electro DMG Bonus for 10s that may stack twice, with each stack duration counted independently:

  • Consuming Elemental Energy through Aimed Shots; you must first unlock the Passive Talent “Black Kite’s Enigma” to trigger this condition.
  • Regaining Elemental Energy by triggering Elemental Reactions using Ancient Rite: The Thundering Sands.
  • Using Secret Rite: Twilight Shadowpiercer.

Sethos’s C2 is generally his second-best Constellation. It provides a consistent 30% Electro DMG Bonus that lasts the entirety of Sethos’s rotation.

Constellation 3
Constellation 3 | Ode to the Moonrise Sage

Increases the Level of Normal Attack: Royal Reed Archery by 3.
Maximum upgrade level is 15.

Despite the increased Talent levels to Sethos’s Normal Attack, most of Sethos’s damage comes from the additional EM multipliers granted by his A4 Passive, his Burst, and/or Aggravate reactions. This significantly diminishes the value of the increased Talent scalings.

Constellation 4
Constellation 4 | Beneficent Plumage

When a Shadowpiercing Shot or Dusk Bolt strikes 2 or more opponents, all nearby party members gain 80 Elemental Mastery for 10s.

A conditional increase to the team’s EM. It is a good buff, but it can only be activated in multi-target combat.

Constellation 5
Constellation 5 | Record of the Desolate God’s Burning Sands

Increases the Level of Secret Rite: Twilight Shadowpiercer by 3.
Maximum upgrade level is 15.

Because of the increased EM scaling, Sethos’s C5 is rather impactful for Sethos’s his Normal Attack DPS playstyle. However, this Constellation is useless for Sethos’s Charged Shot DPS playstyle.

Constellation 6
Constellation 6 | Pylon of the Sojourning Sun Temple

After Shadowpiercing Shot strikes an opponent, the Elemental Energy consumed by the Passive Talent “Black Kite’s Enigma” will be returned. This effect can be triggered up to once every 15s. You must first unlock the Passive Talent “Black Kite’s Enigma.”

As Sethos’s best Constellation, C6 allows for an additional Shadowpiercing Shot that can be used at the beginning of any rotation. However, because Sethos’s A4 Passive only allows for 4 buffed Shadowpiercing Shots, this Constellation’s value diminishes in his Charged Shot DPS playstyle as his 5th Shadowpiercing Shot would be unbuffed. Alternatively, you can choose to continue doing 4 Shadowpiercing Shots, with the Energy restoration lowering his ER requirements significantly.

Combos

  • N = Normal Attack
  • C = Charged Attack
  • A = Aimed Shot
  • P = Plunging Attack
  • E = Elemental Skill
  • tE = Tap Skill
  • hE = Hold Skill
  • Q = Elemental Burst
  • D = dash (cancel)
  • J = jump (cancel)
  • W = walk (cancel)
  • > = switch character
  • ( ) = these actions are optional; please refer to the notes below
  • [ ] = repeat these actions the specified number of times

Normal Attack Combos

At C6, you should include a Charged Shot at the beginning of the combos below.

E Q 5[N2 (D/J)] N2 ESethos’s ideal Normal Attack combo. It is best to reset his attack string his combo before his third Normal Attack to maximize damage. This is ideally done with a dash cancel, but Stamina restrictions require alternating dash cancels and jump cancels.
E Q 5[N2W] N2 EA non–Stamina-intensive combo with walk cancels. The walk cancels can be substituted with jump cancels, albeit jump cancels take more time to execute.
E Q 3[N3D] N2 EThis combo is easier to execute, but it falls significantly behind when it comes to damage.

Charged Shot Combos

In order to use Sethos’s Skill twice per rotation in his Charged Shot playstyle, he needs to go back on-field at a later time due to his Skill’s 8s cooldown. Note that doing this is optional and represents a very minimal DPS increase, but it lowers his ER requirements.You can swap back to Sethos later in the rotation to use his Skill again, but this is optional and represents a very minimal DPS increase. Nevertheless, doing so lowers his ER requirements.

C E 3[C]A generic pre-C6 combo. Sethos uses his Skill after the first Charged Shot to regenerate Energy so that he can fire off 3 more enhanced Charged Shots.
C E 2[C]An alternative combo in which Sethos only performs 3 Charged Shots. The advantage to this combo is that Sethos’s ER requirements are massively lowered with this combo. He no longer needs to have enough ER% for the 4th Charged Shot.
2[C] E 3[C] (E)The optimal C6 combo. It adds an extra Charged Shot, utilizing the free Shadowpiercing Shot provided by Sethos’s C6. Other than this, it is the exact same as his pre-C6 combo. 

Unfortunately, Sethos’s A4 Passive only buffs 4 Shadowpiercing Shots, which means that the last Charged Shot does not benefit from the 700% EM multiplier.
2[C] E 2[C] (E)An alternative C6 rotation that focuses on lowering Sethos’s ER requirements instead of increasing the number of Shadowpiercing Shots.

Attack Mechanics

Sethos has a unique mechanic tied to his Shadowpiercing Shot and his converted Normal Attacks: they can pierce through enemies, dealing the same damage to every enemy they hit. Sethos’s Electro-converted attacks appear to pierce through any enemy.

Sethos’s Electro-converted Normal Attacks during his Burst state deal Charged Attack damage. However, they are still tagged as Normal Attack animations, so he can still trigger effects like Xingqiu’s sword rain attacks or Fischl’s C6. However, he cannot trigger effects reliant on Normal Attack damage like Yun Jin’s Burst.

Sethos can evade the Energy drain from an enhanced Charged Shot if he uses his Burst quickly enough at high enough ping. Check out this video by BowTae for a demonstration of Sethos’s walk cancels and Energy tax evasion.

Artifacts

ER Requirements

Normal Attack DPS

 Double Electro (Fischl)Double Electro (Other)Solo Electro
1 Skill per Rotation100%130–160%
2 Skills per Rotation100%100–120%150–170%

Charged Shot DPS

 Double Electro (Fischl)Double Electro (Other)Solo Electro
1 Skill per Rotation140–150%220–270%
2 Skills per Rotation100–110%150–180%
  • Generally, Sethos’s ER requirements are too high to be justifiable in teams where he is the only Electro unit. 
  • Favonius weapons decrease Sethos’s ER requirements by ~10–20% per proc.
  • For a Charged Shot playstyle, using rotations with 3 Charged Shots (pre-C6) or 4 Charged Shots (C6) lowers Sethos’s ER requirements by 40–80%.

Use the Energy Recharge Calculator to determine exact requirements for your team and rotation.

Artifact Stats


Sands

Goblet

Circlet
Elemental Mastery or Energy RechargeElectro DMG BonusCRIT Rate or CRIT DMG

Stat Priority: ER% (until requirement) > CRIT > EM > ATK%

Sethos should only use an ER% Sands in teams where his ER needs are notably high. Otherwise, an EM Sands is preferred.

Artifact Sets


4pc Wanderer’s Troupe
Sethos’s best artifact set, as it provides EM and unconditional Charged Attack DMG%. Sethos notably likes having high amounts of DMG% as he does not have much of it in his base kit.

4pc Gilded Dreams
4pc Gilded provides a high amount of EM and ATK%, but it falls slightly behind 4pc Wanderer’s Troupe due to its lack of DMG Bonus.

4pc Desert Pavilion Chronicle
While not better than the above options for Sethos’s Charged Shot playstyle, this set’s Attack SPD allows a Normal Attack playstyle to perform extra Normal Attacks during Burst uptime. This makes 4pc Chronicle roughly equal to 4pc Wanderer’s Troupe.

2pc Mixed Sets
2pc Options: EM, Thundering Fury, Marechaussee Hunter

These mixed sets are not far behind the 4pc options, and they are unconditional and easy to farm for. If you already have a good set of these, you may not need to farm for a dedicated 4pc set.

Weapons


Hunter’s Path
Sethos’s best weapon, albeit barely an upgrade from Slingshot. It provides high CRIT Rate and an Additive Base DMG Bonus to Charged Attacks, which Sethos appreciates since his damage centers around Charged Attacks.

Slingshot
Slingshot is a powerhouse on Sethos, as it provides CRIT Rate and a huge amount of Charged Attack DMG%. It beats every other option except Hunter’s Path and is competitive with Hunter’s Path as Sethos’s Best-in-Slot. The only mild caveat is its passive’s range requirement, but that generally does not pose issues.

Aqua Simulacra, The First Great Magic
Alternatives to Slingshot that deal similar damage. Not worth pulling solely for Sethos, as Slingshot is an easily obtainable 3-star weapon.

Aqua has a smaller range requirement than Slingshot, but Sethos tends to fight close enough to enemies either way.

Teams

  • N = Normal Attack
  • C = Charged Attack
  • A = Aimed Shot
  • P = Plunging Attack
  • E = Elemental Skill
  • tE = Tap Skill
  • hE = Hold Skill
  • Q = Elemental Burst
  • D = dash (cancel)
  • J = jump (cancel)
  • W = walk (cancel)
  • > = switch character
  • ( ) = these actions are optional; please refer to the notes below
  • [ ] = repeat these actions the specified number of times

Teambuilding

  • Sethos wants to be in teams with at least one other Electro character due to his ER requirements. 
  • Quicken teams are his main archetype, other archetypes are generally niche and do not perform extremely well.

Quicken

Sethos — Electro — Dendro — Flex

Sethos’s teams are incredibly similar between his Normal Attack and Charged Shot playstyles. Because of his ER requirements Sethos should almost always be used with an Electro battery. A Dendro character is additionally required for Quicken. The last slot can be anyone that increases damage, survivability, or quality of life.

Sethos appreciates shields, as they prevent him from being staggered during Charged Shots. However, because of his short charging time, they are less necessary than with most Charged Shot DPS units.

Notable Teammates

Electro


Fischl
Fischl is a staple unit for Sethos’s teams because of her massive Energy generation and damage profile. She allows Sethos to run very little ER% in most teams.

Yae Miko
Yae Miko serves a similar role to Fischl, but she generates less Energy overall.

Kuki Shinobu
Shinobu is a healer that has good Energy generation, especially with Constellations. However, her Skill’s limited range forces Sethos to fight close to the enemy which can be cumbersome without a good shielder.

C6 Kujou Sara
Sara is mostly valued for her C6; her Flat ATK buff is not extremely impactful, but 60% Electro CRIT DMG is incredibly valuable for Sethos. The short duration is not a large issue as Sethos does not have long field time requirements.

However, Sara does not have good Energy generation, which can inhibit her use in some teams.

Beidou
Beidou is not recommended due to her 20s rotation and low Energy generation.

Dendro


Kirara
Kirara is a shielder that can apply enough Dendro to sustain Quicken.

Yaoyao
Yaoyao fills the roles of both healer and Dendro applier for Quicken. Additionally, because of Sethos’s short field time, she has time to heal the team with her Burst.

Baizhu
Baizhu offers small shields, healing, and an Aggravate DMG Bonus, all of which are appreciated by Sethos. 

Sethos’s desire for 15s rotations lowers the value of Baizhu slightly, but this can be circumvented by only using Baizhu’s Burst every other rotation.

Nahida
Nahida can massively buff Sethos’s EM. While this is a large buff on paper, she makes it incredibly hard to Swirl Electro, which can be a hindrance. She is best used with Zhongli in the flex slot.


Tighnari
Tighnari is another quickswap Charged Shot DPS who plays Quicken teams. He and Sethos create a synergistic core that can rapidly deal damage in a short window.

Collei
A decent option if the other Dendro options aren’t available. Her rotation times match well with Sethos’s.

Anemo


Sucrose
Sucrose is the best 4pc VV holder for Sethos’s teams. In addition to 4pc Viridescent Venerer, she can provide a large amount of EM and buff Sethos’s Electro DMG% with Hakushin Ring.

Kazuha
Kazuha is an alternative to Sucrose who buffs DMG% through his A4. Although his overall buffs are weaker, he offers a lot of personal damage, which can be especially potent in AoE scenarios. His grouping is also appreciated.

Venti
Venti has valuable buffing through 4pc VV, grouping, and Energy regeneration for Sethos. Sethos’s piercing mechanic is especially useful when paired with Venti’s strong grouping.

Heizou
Heizou operates the same as Sucrose; however, his EM buff is fixed at 80 which is fairly lower than what an invested Sucrose can provide.

Geo


Zhongli
Zhongli is an extremely strong shielder who also offers Universal RES Shred. He can hold 4pc Archaic Petra, Tenacity of the Millelith, or Instructor to further buff Sethos.

Though weaker than the above options, he is commonly used with Nahida who makes it difficult to utilize 4pc VV.

Albedo
Albedo offers some off-field damage and 125 EM with his Burst. Without the ability to be run in teams with Geo Resonance, his potential becomes somewhat more limited, however.

Example Teams

This is not a comprehensive list of teams. The inclusion or exclusion of any given team does not necessarily reflect its power level.

Sethos — Fischl — Kirara — Sucrose

A 4-star–only team featuring Fischl to battery, Kirara to shield and apply Dendro, and Sucrose to shred Electro RES and offer her variety of buffs. Fill time after Sethos’s combo by taking Sucrose on-field if using a Charged Shot playstyle.

Sample Rotation
(Fischl C)¹ > Sucrose E(Q) > Fischl E/Q > Kirara shE² > Sethos combo (> Sucrose combo

¹First rotation only.
²Use Kirara’s “Short Hold Skill” for a stronger shield.
³In a Charged Shot playstyle, Sucrose takes the field at the end of the rotation.

Sethos — Fischl — Nahida — Zhongli

This team uses Nahida to buff Sethos’s EM as well as Zhongli instead of an Anemo unit, due to the difficulty of Swirling Electro in teams with Nahida. Fill time after Sethos’s combo if using a Charged Shot playstyle by taking the field with Nahida while you wait for cooldowns to end.

Sample Rotation
Nahida E Q > Zhongli hE > Fischl E/Q > Sethos combo (> Nahida combo

¹In a Charged Shot playstyle, Nahida takes the field at the end of the rotation.

Sethos — Fischl — Tighnari — Baizhu

A quickswap team with Tighnari. The rotation lasts 30s to accommodate both Tighnari and Sethos’s rotation times. Sethos does not use his Normal Attack playstyle in this team.

Sample Rotation (Charged Shot)
Fischl Q N2 > Baizhu EQ N1 > Tighnari E C Q 2[C] > Sethos combo > Fischl E N1 > Baizhu E N2 > Tighnari E C Q 2[C] > Sethos combo

Credits

Contributors: quinslay; haafr, polomo, irokei, chasing_haze

Team images made with the KQM portrait generator.

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