As an Engineer, it’s your job to fix problems. Especially out in space — when you’re teamed up with a bunch of lug-nuts, problems tend to get you killed. Luckily, the Engineer is a jack-of-all-trades that’s capable of babysitting the squad and getting you all safely out of the deathtrap known as Hoxxes IV.
However, you can only bring so much ammo and supplies with you, so it’s important to know how to use your kit efficiently. To that end, we’ve created a comprehensive Deep Rock Galactic Engineer guide to tell you everything you need to know. We’ll go over your role on the team, the best builds for the Engineer, how to use your equipment, and more. All these tips and tricks will help you tame the threats of Hoxxes IV.
Let’s jump into this build.
Table of Contents
Role of the Engineer Class
As the Engineer, you’ll spend most of your time helping your teammates get around the cave systems and avoid hitting the ground at terminal velocity. With your Platform Gun, you can create instant platforms on nearly any terrain.
The most common and basic use for these platforms is helping your Scout safely mine high-up minerals. Whenever you enter a new area, simply start tossing out platforms and ping the minerals with your terrain scanner to alert your Scout (or wait for them to ping you and ask for a platform).
If you don’t have a Scout on the team, you’ll have to make a judgment call. Building a staircase up to the minerals may not be worth the ammo if your Driller can just dig a tunnel up to them. If you do make a staircase, make sure you can actually reach each platform on the way up.
You’ll also frequently be using your platforms to help your team cross chasms and climb ledges. This is especially important during boss fights (like Extermination missions) where your team needs to repeatedly go back and forth in a single area. Do what you can to cover any pitfalls and create as much space as possible for your team to safely work with.
Once you’ve leveled enough as the Engineer, your platforms provide shock absorption, drastically reducing fall damage for anyone who lands on them. Set up safety platforms to rescue a falling teammate (or wherever you predict falling to be common). This is especially handy for escaping enemies and buying time for your team to recover their shields.
Engineers in Combat
In combat, the Engineer has the most balanced arsenal of all the classes. Your primaries are well-suited for handling smaller threats, while your secondary is capable of absolutely devastating crowds and elite enemies. On top of that, you can deploy between 1–2 (depending on your build) automated sentry turrets to provide extra firepower and coverage.
This makes you fantastic for securing areas and chokepoints, as a well-situated fortification of platforms and turrets can make it super easy to kite enemies back and forth safely. Your team will certainly love you for it, as the differences between an experienced and rookie Engineer are nuanced but substantial.
Depending on how you want to play the Engineer, there a couple different perks that will strongly reinforce your playstyle. However, we strongly recommend at least taking Dash no matter what due to the sheer survivability it grants in escaping bad situations.
- Dash: Essential, as mentioned above.
- Beast Master: You already have your turrets — might as well add another ally to your repertoire. Charm a Grunt (preferably one of the stronger variants), relax as they hold aggro on incoming enemies, and let your turrets just free fire.
- Shield Link: You’ll often find yourself setting up near a teammate. Stay close and super charge your shields when you’re about to be overwhelmed.
- Field Medic: Since you’re already babysitting your team, you’ll often find yourself as the last one standing. Kite your enemies with tactical platforms and get your teammates up when you have the chance.
- Born Ready: Your weapons can take a while to reload. Swap to your platform gun and run away for a bit to prep yourself for the fight again.
- Friendly: Your secondary weapons have a huge AOE presence. Best to not get your team killed in the process.
- Elemental Insulation: Resistance to elemental damage is always nice. Especially if your turret fortifications get irradiated or something similar. If you’re running the shock turret build, this also helps ensure you don’t zap yourself to death.
- Veteran Depositor: This one is less about depositing things quicker (though that is nice), and more so about the 30% damage reduction while near the MULE. Given most folks won’t be looting during a fight, you can call Molly over to your fortifications and hunker down even more.
Related Reading: Best Perks Overall for Deep Rock Galactic
Engineer Builds & Equipment
Let’s go over the Engineer’s weapons and equipment, as well as the best builds for the Deep Rock Galactic Engineer role.
Primary Weapons & Builds
As befitting the jack-of-all-trades mentality, the Engineer’s primary weapons are all drastically different from one another. However, they’re all well-suited for dealing with smaller enemies while being ammo efficient. Just make sure the rest of your team does their fare share, or you’ll find yourself overworked (and there’s no overtime).
1. “Warthog” Auto 210
This is the Engineer’s default primary — a straightforward automatic shotgun. A simple but effective solution for dealing with anything trying to eat your face. Apply directly to their face. While it may not one-shot most threats, it’s reliable, comes with more than enough ammo, and has a high stun chance on each shot.
Thankfully, shotguns in Deep Rock Galactic calculate their damage based on the number of pellets that hit an enemy (so there’s no damage fall off over distance). If built properly, you can effectively snipe enemies with a shotgun.
Build A: Stunlock Slugger
This build is incredibly straightforward, turning your gun in to a fully-automated, accurate face-destroyer with a high stun chance. Your choice of Overclock augments either the gun’s stun capability or weakpoint damage.
-  Supercharged Feed Mechanism
-  Loaded Shells — More bang for your buck.
-  Recoil Dampener
-  Bigger Pellets
-  Miner Adjustments
- Overclock: Stunner/Magnetic Pellet Alignment — Both overclocks complement this build’s playstyle. It comes down to whether you’d rather have more control over the meatier enemies or just want to hit harder.
Build B: Turret Charger
This build is a bit more involved and focuses around shooting your turrets to launch a supercharged shot. While it was originally lackluster, it has been buffed to be arguably the Engineer’s most efficient damage per ammo strategy. We recommend taking the turret’s “Hawkeye System” modification if you’re planning on using this build to make sure you don’t waste your ammo in general.
- Supercharged Feed Mechanism (1)
- Loaded Shells (2)
- High Capacity Magazine (3)
- Bigger Pellets (2)
- Turret Whip (1) — The core of this build. Each time you shoot your turret, it’ll launch a supercharged explosive shot at its current target. This consumes five ammo from your turret, so you’ll have to do ammo management. This ability has about a 1.5 second cooldown, but can apply to any Engineer’s turrets.
- Overclock: Mini Shells / Light-Weight Magazines — Reduces your shotgun’s damage and stun capability but drastically increases your ammo and magazine size. Since you’ll be mostly relying on supercharged turret shots, this shouldn’t be too bad. You can take the second overclock instead if you don’t want to give up any base damage on your gun.
2. “Stubby” Voltaic SMG
As its name implies, this primary weapon is all about electrocuting your enemies. Every shot has a 20% chance to apply the effect to your enemies, slowing and damaging them over time. As very few enemies have electric resistance (outside of bosses — which are resistant to nearly everything — and the Huuli Hoarder), this makes the Stubby useful in nearly every situation.
As it’s an SMG, you can rapidly spray a crowd of enemies and hope to electrocute all of them and simply walk away as they get shocked to death. Most builds will revolve around its electrocution ability over direct damage, so it’s primarily used for crowd control as opposed to executing priority targets.
Build A: Lightning Rod Turrets
This build revolves entirely around the overclock turning your turrets into lightning rods. Every time you shoot you turret and the bullet would apply electrocute, your turret will release a massive shock around it. Since this build increases your electrocute chance up to 50%, you’ll be triggering this effect approximately every two shots.
Note: There is a 1.5 second cooldown on this effect, so we strongly recommend taking twin turrets, as each turret has its own separate cooldown.
Additionally, you do not need to fully build the turrets to activate the effect. Feel free to reposition your turrets often to create mobile lightning storms.
- Upgraded Capacitors (2) — This build revolves around proccing the Electrocute effect.
- Recoil Dampener (2) — It’d be awkward to miss your shots on your turret.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (2) — You’re relying on activating your turret’s explosion for damage.
- Conductive Bullets (2) / Hollow-Point Bullets (1) — Personal preference.
- Electric Arc (2) — Free spread of your electrocution to enemies.
- Overclock: Turret EM Discharge — The lynchpin of this build. Will cause a large burst of electricity around the turret, dealing damage, electrocuting, and a high chance at fearing nearby targets. Set up your twin turrets to create a kill zone/hold critical junctures.
Build B: Lightning in a Gun
This build is more of a conventional run and gun, with the aim to get up close and kill enemies in bursts. While you’ll have to aim a bit more carefully with this build, you’ll be putting out an impressive amount of damage in the process.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (3) — It sucks passing up the higher electrocute chance, but you need this.
- Improved Gas System (3) — Dump bullets even faster into their face.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (2)
- Hollow-Point Bullets (1) — You’ll mostly be in their faces when shooting.
- Magazine Capacity Tweak (1) — Less reloading
- Overclock: EM Refire Booster — Critical for this build to work, adds extra electric damage and more importantly drastically boosts your fire rate. Just mind the increased base spread.
3. LOK-1 Smart Rifle
This is the most unique weapon in the Engineer’s arsenal. This rifle does the aiming for you by locking onto targets while you hold the trigger. Up to twelve shots can be queued up and fired. If an enemy dies, the gun will not continue to fire queued-up shots.
In theory, this makes the gun incredibly ammo efficient, but the problem is that the lock-on does not explicitly target weak points on enemies. You’ll have to position yourself so that the bullets will travel into a weak point. Alternatively, you can fire it one shot at a time like a normal rifle.
While it might be a fun gun to use, it’s widely considered to be the Engineer’s worst weapon. Still, we’ll try to give viable builds for it.
Build A: Explosive Tracers
This build makes it so that if you manage to get at least three bullets locked onto a single enemy, the last shot will be an explosive round and electrocutes them. Given that it’s hard to manage ensuring that multiple enemies have at least three locks on them, you’ll mostly be using this gun in single-target scenarios.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (2) — Essential for offsetting the overclock’s demerit.
- Macro Lens (1) — Ideal for single target.
- Electro-Chemical Rounds (1) — Synergizes with your last modification.
- Shutter Speed Sensor (1)
- Electric Generator Mod (1) — Lines up with the overclock and bonus damage to electrocuted.
- Overclock: Explosive Chemical Rounds — Critical for this build. It reduces the base damage of the gun, but the explosive third shot more than makes up for it. Though the reduced ammo hurts.
Build B: Assume the Position
This build revolves around hitting the enemies weak points, so you’re going to have to position yourself quite well. You won’t really be handling multiple enemies. Instead, focus locking all your shots onto one big target and move so that the rounds will all hit its weak point.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (2) — Desperately needed for this gun.
- Macro Lens (1) — Smaller lock on area for more precise shots.
- Electro-Chemical Rounds (1) — Mostly for synergizing with the rest of your team. Do not take Smart Targeting, as it’ll prevent you from getting a full lock on.
- Shutter Speed Sensor (1)
- Unstable Lock Mechanism (2) — Try to get all 12 shots locked on before firing.
- Overclock: Executioner — The lynchpin of this build. Makes it easier to single out an enemy and get a full lock on. Just mind the reduced ammo and smaller magazine you’re working with.
Side Arms & Builds
1. Deepcore 40mm PGL
No FPS would be complete without a grenade launcher. And look at what we have here! The Engineer’s default primary does exactly what you expect it to do. It launches a highly explosive projectile that travels in a slight arc and does massive AOE damage on impact. As a bonus, the explosion tends to fear any nearby (surviving) enemies and break armor.
It’s fantastic for clearing out any area or dealing with swarms, just watch out for your teammates in the blast radius. Though sometimes taking a bit of friendly fire is better than getting mobbed to death.
Build A: Crowd Control
This build is all about dealing as much damage in a large area as possible. Breathing space is essential when dealing with the swarm on higher difficulties, and one shot from this build will create plenty of space.
- HE Compound (3)
- Larger Payload (2)
- High Velocity Grenades (3) — To ensure your shot can reach the ideal center point of a swarm.
- Nails + Tape (2)
- Proximity Trigger (1) — Mainly for the greater radius
- Overclock: Compact Rounds / Pack Rat — Basically grants more ammo. If you don’t want any damage or area coverage loss, then go with the second one.
Build B: Fat Man
This one quite literally turns your explosions into nukes. Ideal for destroying high priority threats. Just for the love of Karl, do not fire this anywhere near where your team is standing or expecting to be at due to the lingering radiation.
- Extra Ammo (2)
- Expanded Ammo Bags (1)
- Pressure Wave (2) — Most priority threats have armor. This fixes that.
- Concussive Blast (3) — To ensure that if it survives, you’ll have time to rectify that.
- Spiky Grenade (2) — Aim for the face.
- Overclock: Fat Boy — The name doesn’t do this overclock justice. Besides increasing the area damage and radius, this overclock also irradiates the area it explodes in for 15s, dealing massive radiation damage. Once again, do not fire this near your team’s location.
2. Breach Cutter
If the Deepcore PGL is about killing everything in a circle, then the Breach Cutter is about killing everything in a line. This beautiful former mining tool fires a line of plasma that cuts through everything it touches until it travels a set distance. There is a slight delay before the line becomes active, though, so back up a bit before firing!
The beam will travel through terrain, meaning you can hit enemies through walls. To gain the most value from each shot, try to line it up with a horde of incoming threats while on even terrain. It’ll kill most basic enemies in a single shot, while tougher ones may require an entire clip.
Build A: Twice as Nice
This build is for those who want to double the value of their shots, which is really only needed against bulkier targets. The overclock enables you to recall your shot and reverse direction. While most enemies will die from the initial shot, this will let you deal double damage on elite threats.
- Prolonged Power Generation (1)
- Expanded Ammo Bags (1) — Given that it’s six more shots, it’s the best choice.
- Quick Deploy (1) — Faster killing.
- Disruptive Frequency Tuning (2) — Anything that survives will be stunned long enough to be killed with normal weaponry.
- Triple Split Line (3) — This turns the line of death into a block of death. Ensures that you hit everything in a pack (including flying enemies).
- Overclock: Return to Sender — Holding down the trigger will let you recall the laser lines and hit an enemy a second time. Fantastic for clean sweeping an area or slaughtering bulky threats.
Build B: Laser Gyro
If you want to turn an area into a no man’s land with spinning laser blades, this build is for you. The overclock makes it so that instead of traveling in a singular direction, your shot will instead launch the laser forward a bit and start spinning in place. Launch it in front of a chokepoint and laugh as every thing shish-kebabs itself trying to reach you.
- Prolonged Power Generation (1)
- Expanded Ammo Bags (1) — Offset the overclock’s demerit.
- Quick Deploy (1)
- Disruptive Frequency Tuning (2) — They get stunned in your gyro of death.
- Triple Split Line (3) / Plasma Trail (2) — We prefer the first option to cover a larger entrance, but the second one is great for when you want to add even more damage to a single area for a largely stationary enemy.
- Overclock: Spinning Death — The core of this build. Lose a bit of damage, max ammo, and magazine size. Gain a much longer projectile lifespan and width while spinning in place.
3. Shard Diffractor
Somehow R&D managed to shove a shard of an Ommoran Heartstone into this cannon and weaponize it into a laser that vaporizes anything on the other end (without exploding and killing you in the process).
Due to the incredibly unstable energy source powering this weapon, you can only fire it for a few seconds before having to let the battery recharge. While it’s incredibly powerful, you’ll chew your ammo incredibly quickly so careful consideration has to go into when to use this weapon.
Notably, this weapon has infinite range and will quickly disintegrate the health of everything it touches. This makes it absolutely fantastic for dealing with major threats at a long-range distance where you can stay nice and safe.
Anything near the impact point will also be caught in the beam’s heat, giving the weapon some AOE presence. As a plus, the laser will cause enemies to ignite and killing them with the weapon will prevent enemies’ on-death effects.
Unlike the Engineer’s other secondaries, this one is more suited for killing single targets instead of devastating crowds of enemies. The weapon also has a brief charge up period before you can start firing, making it less of an emergency escape option.
It’s usually best to just fire the weapon until the enemy is lit on fire instead of fully dying due to the limited ammo reserves. They’ll usually die from the burn damage, or you can swap to your primary to finish them off.
Before we get into the builds, we want to note that the overclocks for this weapon open up some interesting gameplay options. Especially the Endothermic Explosion one which allows you to turn your Engineer platforms into bombs. While they’re quite powerful, they all tend to reduce your total ammo capacity on a weapon that’s already deprived of ammo, making us steer away from them.
Build A: Face Melter
This one is a straight forward direct damage build that’s suited for melting through a single large enemy. Built to let you fire the weapon for as long as possible with bonuses to weak points and faster ignition.
-  Larger Battery – Critical given how long you’ll be firing this weapon.
-  Soft Tissue Disruption – Ideal for single target.
-  Aluminum Foil DIY
-  High-Intensity Heating
-  Dazzler Module – Ideal for keeping that one major threat locked in place while you kill it.
- Overclock: Efficiency Tweaks – Only overclock with no downsides. Increases total ammo capacity and firing capacity until a recharge is needed.
Build B: The Floor is Lava
For those who want the weapon to be better suited against swarms of enemies, you can create basically permanent lines of Sticky Flames to burn the incoming swarm. By utilizing the Volatile Impact Reactor overclock, you can convert the terrain into magma by blasting it with the Shard Diffractor.
Best used for setting up kill zones and hunkering down in a defensible location, this build turns the Diffractor into a set up weapon. The AOE radius and firing duration of the weapon will decrease even more, but at least it won’t hurt the ammo capacity.
Simply carve strips and trenches of magma where you expect enemies to patrol through to reach your team, and laugh as they keep burning themselves trying to reach you. If need be, this build will allow you to quickly set up more “trenches” while hopefully burning some enemies in the process.
-  Larger Battery
-  Particle Spattering – More of a might as well instead of necessary.
-  Open Structure Battery – Create magma lines on demand
-  High-Intensity Heating
-  Bio-Mass Converter – Lets you make more magma lines if dealing with swarmers.
- Overclock: Volatile Impact Reactor – The lynchpin of this build. It’s what enables you to turn the terrain into magma. Reduces the AOE of the beam and the battery “magazine” of the weapon.
Platform Gun & Build
Arguably the most iconic part of the Engineer’s kit — the Platform Gun. We’ve already touched upon most of the uses for it in the role section for the Engineer, but we’ll go over a few more details here that come from a specific modification that nearly all players take.
Platforms can only be horizontal. It’s a shame, but there’s no way to change the angle of them. The platforms are mineable, so you can destroy them if need be. Additionally, explosives will destroy any part of them caught in the blast radius. This includes explosive attacks from enemies.
It may not be obvious at first, but there is a slight arc to the shots from the Platform Gun. It only becomes an issue at longer distances, but you may want to get some practice in with judging the distance in a solo game.
Additional platforms can be linked together by aiming at the edges of existing platforms. If you aim at the top or bottom of an existing platform, they’ll be a slight incline/decline. This is an excellent way to create a canopy or larger platform, which becomes incredibly useful when you take the “Repellant Additive” modification.
This mod makes it so that bugs will try to find another route to you instead of crossing the platforms. However, if going across the platforms is the only way to reach you, they will cross it. Instead, use bug repelling platforms to force enemies into certain areas or cut off an angle of attack.
Examples include making a canopy of platforms above your team’s hunker-down point to prevent bugs from dropping down on your head. Leaving a gap between two platform walls to funnel enemies into a makeshift chokepoint. Play around with it a bit to gain a better understanding.
Additionally, another niche use for platforms is to shield the Drilldozer from the meteor rocks in Escort Duty missions. Fantastic for conserving ammo on higher difficulties. Though this is a bit hard to set up at times.
There needs to be a structure (wall/pillar) close enough that you can extend a series of platforms from, and you have to set up the platforms just after the first phase’s explosion, as the explosion will destroy nearby platforms. The platforms also need to be high enough that explosion blast doesn’t hit the Drilldozer, but low enough that the meteors don’t just go under it.
Each meteor will also destroy a bit of the platform it hits, so you’ll want to stack a couple platforms above and below to form a buffer zone. Trust us, it sounds complicated but is incredibly easy to pull off once you get used to it. Given how large the swarm is at higher hazards, your team will appreciate not having to worry about the meteors destroying the Drilldozer.
Build A: More All-In One Platforms
All the additional useful features that platforms can have with extra ammo.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (2) — You’ll need plenty of ammo.
- Plastcrete MKII (1) — Get this as soon as it’s available. Everyone expects platforms to reduce fall damage.
- Repellant Additive (2) — Deter bugs from touching platforms. Everyone takes this.
LMG Gun Platform & Build
The Engineer’s other most iconic feature is his ability to set up fully automated turrets. These babies will scan back and forth between and fire in bursts at any hostile in range. Unfortunately, they don’t home in on weak points, so how efficient the shots are is dependent on the type of enemy they’re firing at. Also do note that the turrets can’t shoot anything behind them or at 90-degree angles.
The turrets will keep going until they run out of ammo, in which case they need to be refilled by any Engineer on the team. If you hold down the reload button, you will recall all turrets back to you. Make sure to do this whenever you plan on relocating, otherwise you’ll be stuck waiting for them to reach you.
Typically recalling the turrets will also reload them for you, but this is inconsistent (keep that in mind). Additionally, the turrets’ automated shots do not risk friendly fire, so feel free to stand in front of them.
Also, any dwarf can help set up your turret once you place it. Good teammates will help you build them faster. Don’t be afraid to reposition a turret mid fight if you feel that its current location isn’t doing much good. Conversely, do not get killed solely for the sake of setting up your turret.
Build A: Twin Terrors
Having two turrets is ideal for covering more ground and dealing with larger swarms. Keep them close enough to each other so you can feasibly reload them. Usually you’ll want to place them in locations that hit enemies from different angles, to try and take advantage of weakpoints.
- Gemini System (1) — Set up an extra turret and have more max turret ammo.
- Quick Deploy (2) / Expanded Ammo Bags (1) — Comes down to if you’re planning on constantly moving your turrets or hunkering down in one area forever.
- Stun (2) — Crowd control is always great. Armor breaking tends to not hit the armored bits.
- Defender System (1) — Increase your ammo efficiency and lets you do other stuff.
Build B: Big Bertha
If you rather have your turret just hit harder and be more ammo efficient, then stick with a single one. Just note that it’ll struggle with dealing with larger swarms. We recommend taking the “Hawkeye System,” so you can prioritize deadlier threats.
- LMG MKII (2) — Bigger, stronger turret.
- Expanded Ammo Bags (1) — You probably won’t be moving it too much, so more ammo is nice.
- Stun (2) / Hardened Rounds (1) — Personal choice.
- Hawkeye System (2) — Increase its range and gives control on targeting with the terrain scanner. Great for micro-managers.
The default grenade of the Engineer is the one thing bugs hate above all other things — a dancing holographic dwarf. This will create a decoy that draws the attention of up to ten nearby enemies. Do note that larger enemies and foes that are already fixated on a target are less likely to be distracted by it.
Once it takes too much damage, it’ll explode in a burst of electricity, damaging and electrocuting nearby enemies. Use it to buy time or keep enemies in a certain area. Just be tactical with them, as you only have four.
2. Plasma Burster
The next grenade in the Engineer’s arsenal is basically a Bouncing Betty. Upon hitting the ground, it’ll detonate in a burst of plasma and continue to bounce/explode three more times in the direction it was thrown. Though note that if it bounces into a wall, it’ll reverse direction instead of climbing the wall.
While it’s not the flashiest of grenades, it does a considerable amount of damage and tends to fear any surviving enemies. Thankfully, you do come with six of them, so don’t be afraid to use them.
3. Proximity Mine
Arguably the strongest of the Engineer’s grenades (certainly the most used one). These are exactly what they sound like – mines that detonate once a standard sized grunt or larger crosses the threshold. They stick to any surface, and their trigger radius is indicated by a flashing yellow circle. It takes three seconds to arm and friendlies will not trigger them, nor will tiny swarmer-sized enemies.
Best of all, each mine can detonate four times, dealing a tremendous amount of damage and potentially fearing any survivors You can even recover mines that have not detonated at all.
While you only have four of these, they are fantastic for area denial or dealing with massive incoming swarms.
Join the High Ground
And that’s it for our guide on the Engineer — thanks for reading! We recently updated this Engineer’s Guide to reflect the latest changes in Season 2. If there are any other tips/tricks that you think we should include in our guide, please subscribe and leave a comment below.
And remember, rock and stone forever!