Best Explorer Build

Best Explorer Build - Mass Effect: Andromeda (MEA)

By zanuffas
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This post covers the best Explorer build in Mass Effect Andromeda. This profile is something similar to Jack of All Trades where the user is proficient in all skill trees. Although this may sound bad, in reality it unlocks skill combos for any type of situation without any negatives.

Explorer Build

Explorer is a profile that should be something like Jack of All trades, it specializes in all skill trees - combat, tech, and biotics. Moreover, instead of being average everywhere it is overpowered

And that is possible. the build uses skills to quickly move around the battlefield, and constantly restore their shields. Moreover, with Turbocharge any weapon we use becomes extremely deadly and can take out most of the enemies in the blink of an eye.

explorer build combat mass effect andromeda

There are choices for this build to be very aggressive or on the safe side. Tactical Cloak allows you to almost double your damage in short bursts of time but takes away HP regeneration. We really need Tech skill as it is important in sustaining weapons with Bio-Converter. Be sure to read as I will give you the option to address this

The build has been tested on Insanity difficulty

Skills allocation

This section covers how skill points should be allocated for the end game on the Explorer Build.

Check this post on how to reset Ryder skill points and start using this build

Biotic Skills

explorer build biotics tree mass effect andromeda

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
charge mass effect andromedaCharge
  1. Damage & Force
  2. Weapons & Melee
  3. Any
This ability is what allows the Explorer build to be reckless and mobile. With it we can detonate combos, restore shields and quickly move over the battlefield appearing next to any enemy. The big decision is what upgrade to pick for level 6. My preferred is Shock Trooper. It ensures that I always can use Charge whenever needed. Moreover, Bastion's 100% shield restoration is wasted as we get large bonuses for shield restoration from the Explorer profile. So it's just a bit more damage and damage resistance.
offensive biotics mass effect andromedaOffensive Biotics
  1. Alacrity
  2. Detonation
  3. Biotic Warrior
Improves biotic skills. The last upgrade will also increase weapon damage for 3 seconds after Charge usage. So feel free to use it as much as possible
barrier mass effect 3Barrier
  1. Unyielding Barrier
  2. Biotic Alacrity
  3. Saving Barrier
Provides improvements to shields and gives instant shield restore when health is low
containment mass effect andromedaContainment
  1. Any
  2. Shield Detonation
  3. Event Horizon
Gives bonuses to biotic skills like area of effect, detonation power, etc. Generally, this is a very low-priority skill, that gives minor improvements.

Tech Skills

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
team suport mass effect andromedaTeam Support
  1. Support
  2. Team Recovery
  3. Life Support
This is an extremely important passive skill. It gives bonus defense restoration for both Charge and Energy Drain (if you decide to pick it). Moreover, with the last upgrade, each tech skill used will restore HP.
offensive tech mass effect andromedaOffensive Tech
  1. Anti-Shield
  2. Detonators
  3. Technical Rounds
Improves tech power handling. For level 4 I pick Anti shield as these types of enemies are the most abundant. For level 6, I go with Technical Rounds to improve weapon damage.
auxiliary systems mass effect andromedaAuxiliary Systems
  1. Any
  2. Enduring Tech
  3. Omni-Vents
Improves tech powers. For level 4, either upgrade works, but I do not use consumable ammo, so I pick Weight. The last upgrade gives a huge power cooldown boost.

Here we have an exciting choice. If you like to play extremely aggressively and want to deal very high damage you should take Tactical Cloak

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
tactical cloak mass effect andromedaTactical Cloak
  1. Damage Bonus
  2. Duration
  3. Combat Cloak
Become invisible and disappear from enemy sight. The last upgrade is the most difficult part of this skill. If you take Combat Cloak, the Life Support skill will not activate and you will not restore your HP after tech skill use (this is very useful when using Bio-Converter). Of course, you will deal a huge amount of damage in the 2-second window instead. However, by picking Escape Artist, you only get improved damage with the first action, which makes this skill lose most of its appeal if you use something like Hornet

However, it comes with a huge downside. The ability cancels any effects of shield or health regeneration. So as an alternative, I suggest this one:

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
energy drain mass effect andromedaEnergy Drain
  1. Any
  2. Extend Duration
  3. Damage
A very powerful tech skill that restores shields and can both prime and detonate combos. The level 4 upgrade is your personal preference. I went with Recharge Speed, as the restoration is already high from Explorer profile stat bonuses.

Combat Skills

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
turbocharge mass effect andromedaTurbocharge
  1. Duration
  2. Damage & Force
  3. Supercharge
With this ability any weapon you wield will become extremely deadly. It will provide bonus damage, a higher rate of fire, and a bigger clip size
combat fitness mass effect andromedaCombat Fitness
  1. Regeneration
  2. Heavy Lifting
  3. Hold the Line
Provides important bonuses to the main player stats. Specifically, we are targeting bonuses for damage reduction and health regeneration. It will be important when using weapons with Bio-Converter
combat tools mass effect andromedaCombat Tools
  1. Any
  2. Any
  3. Aerial Combat
The skill provides some bonuses to aerial and melee combat. I recommend taking this ability late in the game when you have all other combat skills covered. The bonuses are not as game-changing.

Pick your preferred weapon skill. I personally went with Shotguns and Pistols as I used them both

Power name Upgrades Choices Description
shotguns skill icon mass effect andromedaShotguns
  1. Weight
  2. Clip Size
  3. Damage & Force
One of my favorite guns in the game. We want improvements to clip size and higher damage.
pistols skill icon mass effect andromedaPistols
  1. Weight
  2. Clip Size
  3. Any
Improves pistol handling. For the last upgrade pick the choice based on your preference - aiming or no aiming
assault rifles skill mass effect andromedaAssault Rifles
  1. Weight
  2. Clip Size
  3. Shatter Defenses
Improves assault rifle handling. Take the Shatter Defenses for large damage increase with successful shots.

I did not go with Sniper Rifles, it is a valid option but could be hard to play if you are very aggressive and close to the enemies.


You will need to spend 78 skill points in Biotic, Tech, and Combat trees each to unlock a level 6 Explorer profile
Profile Description
explorer profile icon mass effect andromedaExplorer Has a unique Dodge mechanic, that moves through obstacles. Provides a wide array of stat bonuses, tech recharge rates, power damage, weapon damage, and damage resistance.

Ability Progression

This section covers detailed ability progression for the best Explorer Build. This is just a suggested progression, feel free to adjust it based on your needs.

Generally, you want to pump up your biotic skills and sprinkle combat little by little. This will make early to mid-game much easier.

Order Skill Description
1 energy drain mass effect andromedaEnergy Drain Lv 3 We unlock the first skill. If you plan on going with Tactical Cloak, you can do Energy Drain Lv 4 or take Offensive Tech Lv 4 and then pick it. You need 9 skill points invested in Tech Tree.
2 offensive biotics mass effect andromedaOffensive Biotics Lv 4 Get the Alacrity upgrade for Offensive Biotics and unlock Charge.
3 charge mass effect andromedaCharge Lv 3
4 Preferred Weapon skill Lv 4 Take your preferred weapon skill, as we will need 9 skill points to unlock Turbocharge. You can later respec this.

Now we are sure to have all the active skills for the build
5 turbocharge mass effect andromedaTurbocharge Lv 3
6 charge mass effect andromedaCharge Lv 6 We maximize the core active skills of the build. Charge skill is especially important as fast Recharge Speed will allow restoring shields at will
7 energy drain mass effect andromedaEnergy Drain Lv 6
tactical cloak mass effect andromedaTactical Cloak Lv 6
8 turbocharge mass effect andromedaTurbocharge Lv 6
9 offensive tech mass effect andromedaOffensive Tech Lv 6 These passive skills are very important in maximizing the build effectiveness. We get additional damage from using Tech skills and they also restore HP.
10 team suport mass effect andromedaTeam Support Lv 6
11 offensive biotics mass effect andromedaOffensive Biotics Lv 6 Maximize biotic skill effectiveness.
12 Preferred Weapon skill Lv 6 Maximize weapon damage, and improve health regeneration and survival with low HP thanks to these abilities.
13 combat fitness mass effect andromedaCombat Fitness Lv 6
14 barrier mass effect 3Barrier Lv 6 Finish the build by maximizing passive skills in all of the skill trees. This will also unlock the level 6 Explorer profile for maximum stats improvements.
15 auxiliary systems mass effect andromedaAuxiliary Systems Lv 6
16 combat tools mass effect andromedaCombat Tools Lv 6
17 containment mass effect andromedaContainment Lv 6


This section will cover playing the best Explorer build in Mass Effect Andromeda.


With the Charge and Shock Trooper upgrades, you can almost instantly restore your shields at any time in combat. You will have about 3 seconds (at maximum) of cooldown with this ability. Have in mind, sometimes it bugs out, and shows that enemies cannot be reached (this is very irritating)

charge skill description mass effect andromeda

Choosing between Tactical Cloak and Energy Drain

This is the big question as Tactical Cloak provides a very aggressive play and both act as a survival option and damage booster. The Combat Cloak upgrade is extremely powerful and will greatly boost your overall DPS. Sadly, this then negates the Life Support HP regeneration. So if you feel that you will not die via Bio-Converter, this is a perfect choice

explorer build large damage mass effect andromeda

Now Energy Drain is a beast on its own. Although it will not give this large of a damage boost it greatly improves survivability. Moreover, it allows you to set up Tech Combos, for large AOE damage. Also, you will regenerate your HP when using it from Life Support passive skill

What did I do? If I was using something like Hornet, I would go with Energy Drain. However, with Shotguns, I would pick Tactical Cloak, as they do not drain health as fast via Bio-Converter augmentation.

Main Combat rotation

I think combat can be approached based on your preference. However, what I like to do is constantly mix abilities and weapon shots. Remember, we are getting a boost after each biotic and tech skill usage. So here is how I go:

  1. Find a group of enemies or a shielded one. Use Charge to get close to them
  2. Activate Turbocharge
  3. Release a volley of shots and just delete them (this should be easy, with suggested weapons)
  4. Target the next enemy and use Energy Drain, to kill them. Or if you see that an enemy is primed by your companion's skill, use Energy Drain on them for a combo.
  5. Release a volley of shots, and move to Charge
  6. At any time feel free to use Charge to restore your shields. The skill has a low cooldown rate

With Tactical Cloak, I would use it after Turbocharge is activated and get a huge bonus to damage for the 2 seconds.


The build is powerful on its own and can even set up its own combos. Genreally, any companions work. Check the squad builds recommendations. However, one companion shines the most.

cora skills mass effect andromeda

Core has a Shield Boost skill that restores shields and HP. This is especially useful once you get Bio-Converter and don't want to die fast. Moreover, she also has freezing bullets once you maximize Asari Commando, they make the combat much easier.


This section will cover what equipment you should be using with Explorer Build.


Generally, any of these weapon options are very powerful. So no need to worry about whether you are missing out on something. Pick the one that looks the coolest, and what type of shooting you want - close range or mid to long.

Name Mods Augmentations
n7 piranha mass effect andromedaN7 Piranha
  • Shotgun Barrel
  • Shotgun Receiver
dhan mass effect andromedaDhan
  • Shotgun Barrel
  • Shotgun Receiver
m-25 hornet mass effect andromedaHornet
  • Pistol Barrel
  • Pistol Light Magazine
N7 Valkyrie mass effect andromedaN7 Valkyrie
  • AR Barrel
  • AR Heavy Magazine
  • AR Light Stock
  • AR Receiver

Melee Weapons

Name Augmentations Description
asari sword mass effect andromedaAsari Sword Even though you may not use melee weapons, their bonuses from augmentations always apply. Due to this, we want to maximize weapon damage with 5 slots.


Here are what Armor pieces I recommend for the Explorer build. Generally, I would recommend either splitting bonuses between powers and weapon damage or just maxing weapon damage. Going only for Power Damage would be a waste because we use skills like Turbocharge.

Armor piece Stats Augmentation options
heleus icon helmet mass effect andromedaHeleus Helmet +7%-25% Power Damage
+2%-8% Weapon Damage
heleus icon armor mass effect andromedaHeleus Chest +7%-25% Power Damage
+2%-8% Weapon Damage
+10-30 Damage Resistance

For pure weapon damage, there is another option. It also gives more augmentations slots for a little bit of stat boost. Just keep in mind that I do not use Kett Helmet even though it gives a bit more weapon damage at high tiers. My reasoning is that additional 2% weapon damage results in losing 25% power damage, which is a lot and not worth it.

Armor piece Stats Augmentation options
heleus icon helmet mass effect andromedaHeleus Helmet +7%-25% Power Damage
+2%-8% Weapon Damage
maverick armor mass effect andromedaMaverick Chest +3%-12% Weapon Headshot/Weak Point Bonus
+3%-15% Weapon Spare Ammo
+5%-20% Weapon Damage 
kett legs mass effect andromedaKett Legs +3%-12% Combat Power Damage
+1%-10% Weapon Damage 
kett arms mass effect andromedaKett Arms +3%-12% Combat Power Damage
+1%-10% Weapon Damage 

I think there are no relevant Fusion mods for this build. So you can skip them


Thank you for reading this post on the best Explorer build in Mass Effect Andromeda. I covered recommended abilities and their progression, best equipment, and tactics.

Feel free to leave a comment below!


Post author zanuffas avatar zanuffas
Gamestegy Founder. I have been writing game guides and builds for 4 years. I like to push myself to create something wonderful for the readers!