Genshin Impact Paimon – emergency food or Unknown God?

She's small. She's cute. She's kind of annoying. But is Genshin Impact's Paimon evil? Is she really the Unknown God? Will there ever be a Paimon boss fight?

Genshin Impact's Paimon in red with devil horns

Genshin Impact is a gorgeous game, full of vivid worlds, vibrant characters, and heaps of lore. But one cornerstone of the popular RPG has remained divisive among fans worldwide – and, of course, that character is Genshin Impact’s Paimon. The child-like, flying travel companion and guide has nestled herself deeply into every facet of gameplay, with her pitchy voice and obsession with food and treasure both endearing her to players, and pushing many to the point of muting in-game dialogue for some relief.

However, despite her persistent presence throughout the game, there’s still a lot left unknown about Genshin Impact’s Paimon, from her origins to her motives. This, among many other things (including many player’s dislike for her) has led to a lot of fan speculation – is Paimon evil? Is Paimon the Unknown God? Will there ever be a real Paimon boss battle? Well, get your magnifying glass and pipe, Sherlocks, as we’re going on a deep dive into what we do know about the game’s strange little mascot.

If you want to know more about the characters of Teyvat, head over to our Genshin Impact tier list, or check out our guide for all the latest characters, including Genshin Impact’s Shenhe, Genshin Impact’s Yun Jin, Genshin Impact’s Itto, and Genshin Impact’s Gorou. We’ve also got a run down of Genshin Impact’s next banner, so you can keep up to date with all the new arrivals.

Genshin Impact questions with Paimon

Questions with Paimon is a Genshin Impact event where you complete a quiz in order to get some cool freebies. The last Questions with Paimon event was in November 2021, but if you keep an eye on our Genshin Impact events guide, you’ll know when the next one crops up.

Genshin Impact Paimon blushing

Is Genshin Impact’s Paimon evil?

A lot of you have asked whether Paimon is evil, and for good reason. As much as it’s hard to imagine the half-pint, squeaky-voiced, fairy-critter wielding any weapons or coming up with any truly devious schemes that don’t revolve around food, there are a few details that have our eyebrows raising.

Paimon’s name

Firstly, there’s her name. If you’ve watched Ari Aster’s chilling horror-drama Hereditary, you’ll likely recognise Paimon as something other than a cute (and slightly annoying), ethereal being. In the ancient text Ars Goetia, Paimon is the ninth pillar, and the king of hell that is the most obedient to Lucifer, said to bring wealth and knowledge to his mortal followers (Paimon’s bargains and her obsession with Mora, anyone?). Plus, Genshin Impact’s Paimon wears a crown, which, naturally, a king of the underworld would likely also sport.

The similarities don’t end there either – the demon Paimon is said to be albino, which aligns with Genshin Impact Paimon’s pale skin and white hair. Though he’s also said to have a deep booming voice, which is clearly the opposite of our emergency food turned companion.

However, remember that several of the archons in the game have names taken from demons – for example, the archon form of Genshin Impact’s Venti is known as Barbatos, who also appears in Ars Goetia as both the eighth pillar and the Earl and Great Duke of Hell. Plus, different cultures have different relationships with the concept of demons – with the demonic and evil not entirely synonymous in Eastern mythology.

There’s bound to be some significance in the fact that not only Paimon, but Morax, Baal, Barbatos, and more are all names of demonic origin given to gods and archons in the game. Rather than pointing to Paimon being evil, it may well suggest that she is another god. But a god of what, exactly?

Genshin Impact's Paimon caught on a fishing pole by the Traveler

Paimon’s backstory

There’s also Paimon’s mysterious backstory and unknown origin. Let’s face it, it’s a little weird the way the Genshin Impact Traveler first meets Paimon – they fish her out of a pond, and both seem unsure how they ended up together, later merely putting it down to fate. After this, we learn very little about Paimon’s origin, despite her being very knowledgeable about Teyvat. It’s also implied, in a line of throwaway dialogue during one of the archon quests, that Paimon remembers a war that happened over 1,000 years ago, suggesting that she is in fact, as old as some of the archons themselves.

Additionally, it’s never explained how she has the ability to freeze and control time using the nifty clock feature in the menu, which may give further gravity to her being a god. Fans have also suggested she may be the last living sealie, related to the guiding spirits we see floating around Teyvat. This is illustrated by her role as a guide, design, size, ability to fly, and her obsession with treasure.

Genshin Impact Unknown God with her red cube attack

Is Paimon the Unknown God?

Another big question floating around the Genshin community is whether Paimon is the Unknown God. For those of you who don’t remember, the Unknown God is the one responsible for separating the Traveler and their sibling at the beginning of the game, and due to her mysterious nature and ominous appearance, is considered the big bad of Genshin Impact.

Paimon shares some unique visual traits with the Unknown God, the first being the geometric, constellation patterns on the underside of her scarf/cape. The Unknown God also has these on her cape, but instead of being blue and purple, they are deep red. Additionally, the accessory in Paimon’s hair looks similar to the portal the Unknown God appears from in the opening cutscene.

When the Traveler first encounters the Unknown God, it’s in the floating pillar area – the same that appears on the game’s login screen. If you look at the top and bottom of the pillars here, you’ll see golden crests similar to those on Paimon’s clothes. Additionally, the Unknown God calls the Travelers ‘outlanders’, implying that she hails from Teyvat, and it would seem Paimon does as well due to her wealth of knowledge about the land.

Genshin Impact log in screen

However, Paimon and the Unknown God’s magic varies greatly – with Paimon’s appearing as stars of varying shapes, whereas the Unknown God’s are uniform red cubes. Additionally, the blue, starry pattern of Paimon’s cape is usually associated with the Abyss order, who are fundamentally opposed to the gods, and Paimon seems far more interested in food and treasure than in upholding heavenly principles, something that appears to be the Unknown God’s core motive.

This presents another theory – perhaps Paimon and the Unknown God are not the same, but in some way related? Whether she is sourced from the Unknown God’s power, a relative, or something completely different still remains to be seen, but it’s certainly food for thought. We just hope that, by travelling with Paimon, we aren’t unwittingly carting around a security camera with a direct feed to the Unknown God.

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Genshin Impact Paimon boss

The Genshin community has whipped up a storm over the last year, as a screenshot and short clip of what appears to be a boss battle between Paimon and the Traveler surfaced. Unfortunately, the internet is good at spreading rumours without fact-checking first, and that’s certainly what happened here – as the video is actually a fan edit. The end of the video states as such, but this has been cropped out of the viral clip, leading many to believe it was a legitimate leak.

However, it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that the Traveller would go head to head against Paimon as a final boss, as those who are familiar with Black Desert Online may be aware. Paimon knows all of the traveller’s weaknesses, strengths, fighting styles, and more, so she would be an undeniably tough opponent, even if she is only tiny – we still don’t know what kind of power she holds. Plus, she’s probably harbouring a deep rage for all those times we called her emergency food…

Genshin Impact's Paimon looking dazed

But at the moment, there’s nothing to confirm that Paimon has ulterior (or sinister) motives, and we find it unlikely since so much of the game is based around our little flying companion – if she was revealed to be evil, who would run the Paimon’s bargains shop? Who would help us skip time when we need to wait 12 in-game hours to complete a quest? Sounds like a lot of work would need to be done to cater to this curveball.

If you’re looking for more Genshin Impact info, head over to our Genshin Impact update and Genshin Impact events guides. We’ve also got a list of the best mobile RPGs, full of new worlds to explore outside of Teyvat.

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