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Honkai Star Rail: Kafka Build Guide

Honkai Star Rail Kafka Build Guide

Kafka is a 5-star Lightning Nihility character in Honkai Star Rail. She is a high damage-dealing character who focuses on applying damage-over-time (DoT) on enemies and amplifying the effects of other DoTs applied by other allies to deal even more damage.

Most of her utility and damage come from her skill and ultimate. Kafka’s skill will deal damage on top of instantly detonating any currently applied DoTs on the enemy. This will trigger a burst of damage equal to a portion of the total damage the applied DoT based on the number of stacks. This translates to dishing out an explosive amount of damage to a single target that also splashes adjacent targets.

Kafka’s ultimate will deal high damage as well as apply DoTs on enemies that will deal additional damage based on Kafka’s attack for 2 turns, giving her high utility in both single target and certain area-of-effect (AOE) scenarios.

Kafka is a key component in most if not all DoT focused team comps as she amplifies the damage dealt by other DoT characters and it is important to know how to build her to maximize your team’s efficiency. This guide will walk through each of Kafka’s abilities as well as how to build her with stat priorities, best relic sets, Eidolons, and examples of optimal team comps.

Kafka Build Guide for Honkai: Star Rail

This build guide for Kafka in Honkai Star Rail will delve into each aspect of her kit and how to prioritize traces, stats/sub-stats, relics, and lightcones, for all players ranging from free-to-play to heavy spenders:

  • Main Stats and Substats
  • Main Traces and Abilities
  • Technique and Bonus Traces
  • Relics
  • Lightcones
  • Eidolons
  • Team Comps

Main Stats and Sub Stats

The main stats you’re going to want to focus on for Kafka are Attack and Speed. Since DoT damage does not scale with crit values, you can focus on boosting her attack stat so that she deals more overall damage. Boosting her speed will allow Kafka to take out enemies quickly.

Like with all DoT characters, you will also want to ensure that Kafka’s Effect Hit Rate is high to guarantee your chance to apply Shock DoT to enemies of all levels. You will also want her HP to be relatively high to increase her survivability.

Main Traces and Abilities

For Trace leveling priority, you’re going to want to focus on in order: her ultimate, skill, talent, and basic attack. Leveling up her ultimate will allow you to deal more base damage as well as increase the multipliers of her Shock DoT damage based on her attack.

Leveling her skill will increase the portion of damage dealt by the DoT detonation based on the currently applied DoTs. Her talent’s main utility will be for quickly dealing a portion of Kafka’s attack as well as Shock DoT to the enemy. Her basic attack will never really be used.

All trace values are based on E0.

Basic ATK – Midnight Tumult: Deals 50% of ATK to a single enemy. This will require little to no leveling as Kafka’s main source of damage will be through her skill, ultimate, and her DoTs. Her Basic ATK will only be used if you’re trying to recover skill points.

Skill – Caressing Moonlight: Deals 80% of Kafka’s attack to a single enemy and 30% of Kafka’s attack to adjacent targets. If targets have DoTs applied to them, additionally deal 60% of their original damage.

Gameplay-wise, you will predominantly be using Kafka’s skill on each of her turns to maintain high and consistent damage to the enemy until she gets her ultimate. It is important to have supports or other characters that are either skill-point neutral or positive.

Ultimate – Twilight Trill: Deals damage equal to 48% of Kafka’s attack to all enemies. Enemies will also have Shock DoTs applied to them and will immediately take damage from those shock DoTs based on 80% of their original damage. 

Those Shock DoTs will last for 2 turns and deal shock damage equal to 116% of Kafka’s attack.

You will ideally want to spam Kafka’s ultimate as much as possible since those Shock DoTs deal a ton of damage which is why it is important to level those traces and use her skill each turn to generate more energy.

Talent – Gentle but Cruel: After one of Kafka’s allies uses a basic attack, Kafka will launch a follow-up attack that deals damage equal to 42% of her attack as well as apply the same Shock DoT applied by her ultimate. This Shock DoT will also share the same damage multipliers.

Her talent’s Shock DoT will also last 2 turns similar to her ultimate and her talent can only be activated once per turn.

Technique and Bonus Traces

Technique – Mercy is Not Forgiveness: Immediately deals lightning damage equal to 50% of Kafka’s attack to all enemies within a set radius. Will also apply the same Shock DoT dealt by her ultimate and her talent that will last for 2 turns.

Bonus Trace – Torture: When Kafka uses her ultimate, will now detonate all currently applied DoTs rather than just the Shock DoT applied from her ultimate.

Bonus Trace – Plunder: If an enemy dies while Shocked, Kafka generates 5 energy.

Bonus Trace – Thorns: Increases the base chance for enemies to get Shocked by Kafka’s ultimate, technique, or talent by 30%.


For her relics, you’re going to go all in on attack main stats as well as more attack and speed sub-stats for increased overall damage. You can run her with speed boots and an attack chest with her head and arm relics rolled preferably with attack and speed sub-stats. 

You can also sprinkle in Break Effect and crit substats but don’t prioritize these stats. Break Effect is purely situational and her DoTs do not scale on crit stats. Furthermore, you would need to focus on crit rate and crit damage to increase the damage only for her direct attacks.

You will also want to maintain a high Effect Hit Rate to ensure you will always apply Shock DoTs to targets. Specifically, you will want to aim for 67% but if you have to choose between attack and EHR, always go for attack.

Her current best-in-slot relic set is the Prisoner in Deep Confinement set. This set will increase her attack by 12% and the 4-piece set bonus will grant her 6% defense-ignore for every DoT applied to the target up to 3 DoTs.

Her other best in slot set Band of Sizzling Thunder is still really good as it will provide a flat 10% buff to her lightning damage and the 4-piece bonus will grant a 20% attack bonus for 1 turn when using her skill.

If you are struggling to meet certain speed thresholds, you can always run the Messenger Traversing Hackerspace set in tandem with Band of Sizzling Thunder to have both speed and lightning damage bonuses.

For her Planar Ornament set, her current best-in-slot is the Firmament Frontline Glamoth set as it will grant her 12% attack on top of another 12%/18% more damage if you meet the 135/160 speed thresholds. You’re going to want a lightning damage sphere with an attack rope.


Her best in slot lightcone would be her signature lightcone Patience is all You Need as it increases all damage done by 24%. Its ability Spider Web will increase Kafka’s speed by 4.8% after each attack dealt which can stack up to 3 times.

The lightcone also grants the ability to afflict Erode, which when applied will consider the target as Shocked and will deal lightning damage equal to 60% of Kafka’s attack for 1 turn.

Since her signature lightcone is tied to a limited banner, another great option is Good Night and Sleep Well which will increase Kafka’s damage by 12% based on each debuff applied to the target. This effect will max out at 3 debuffs.

Another option is Fermata which increases Break Effect by 16% and also increases damage dealt to targets afflicted with Shocked or Wind Shear by 16%. Considering some of her best team comps, this lightcone is a very good choice.


Kafka’s most notable Eidolon is her E1 where she will increase the DoT damage applied by her follow-up attack. If you are spending money, her E1 would also be a great stopping point.

Her E3 and E5 will provide level bonuses to her traces which are great and her E2 will allow her to increase all DoT damage dealt by all allies by 25% just by being on the field. 

Her E4 will cause her to generate 2 energy each time an enemy takes damage from a Shock DoT she applied and her E6 will increase the damage multiplier of the Shock DoT applied from her ultimate, technique, and talent to 156% and increase the duration by 1.

Team Comps

Kafka is a key player in all DoT team comps. You will ideally run her with 2 other DoT units and a sustain or 1 other DoT unit, 1 support, and 1 sustain.

A prime DoT team comp would be Kafka, Black Swan, Ruan Mei, and Huo Huo but you can easily switch out these characters depending on your account.

Black Swan’s DoTs are incredibly strong and can have high amounts of stacks but you can easily sub in another or multiple DoT units such as Sampo who has high utility due to his ability to increase the enemies’ DoT vulnerability and high wind DoTs.

Guinaifen is a solid pick and can easily afflict fire DoTs and Luka can deal massive amounts of damage but his damage potential drops off quite a bit if the enemy is not weak to physical.

Ruan Mei’s kit will allow Kafka to break enemy weakness’ faster if they are weak to lightning as well as deal more damage through RES-PEN. A good substitute could be Tingyun for extra attack and energy regeneration or Pela for more defense reduction on enemies.

Huo Huo can both heal and provide an attack boost and extra energy from her ultimate. If you do not have Huo Huo you can always use another sustain such as Fu Xuan, Luocha, Lynx, Natasha, or even Gepard or Fire MC.

And that is all you need to know about the best Kafka build in Honkai: Star Rail. Check out other interesting guides and articles:

Video Game Guides Writer for Raider King. Based out of Orlando, Florida and enjoys writing guides for RPGs across a variety of genres. He is seeking to write informative and fun guides while also improving his writing skills and experience.
Peter Kiernan
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