Zane and Amara art (Borderlands 3)

Borderlands 3: Amara Builds vs. Zane Builds

Borderlands 3 has four starting vault hunters. These vault hunters will help you with their special abilities. But selecting the best one or the suitable one is a confusing job. Each vault hunter is a specialist on something.

New players and solo players should go with Zane (Barrier + SNTNL). This will be an overpowering presence. Returning players can go the Amara way. She will help you dish out persistent damage for longer.

You can know more about them by reading their three skill trees and action skills. Among 4 of the vault hunters, there are two of them who are worth mentioning as the most popular. Players endlessly argue over who is the best, Zane or Amara? Here in the article, we are going to compare their skill trees and action abilities one by one.

As you know, all 4 of them have unique abilities. So, a comparison can be done up to a certain limit only as their overall gameplay differs a lot and everything isn’t black and white. Let’s check what is special about them unbiasedly.

Although a lot of things matter in BL3, like even the voice lines, we’re going to limit ourselves to technical comparisons within the current Borderlands 3 meta.

Featured image: Borderlands 3 Zane and Amara art by WeirdScienceX on DeviantArt.

Borderlands 3 Amara Builds

Amara from Borderlands 3
Amara performs “mudras”, which are used in yoga. She’s a character based out of Bengal, India and her name means “unkillable” or “deathless” (according to her, it means deathless in many worlds, and is a conditioner brand in several as well).

The true excitement of Borderlands 3 can be fully enjoyed with a decent Amara build. Fighting against the guns needs a particular set of skills and Amara comes with them. Her abilities are very suitable for all stages of the game.

  • Beginners can utilize the versatility of Amara with a Mystical Assault build. The focus will be high gun damage and action skill damage. With Wrath (or Restless too), she becomes a terrifying presence on the field, living up to her reputation as a Siren.
  • More experienced players usually build high melee damage Amara. Definitely the bread and butter of the character, it works on the Brawl skill tree with Personal Space or Jab Cross. Build focus goes towards extreme close range/melee damage.
  • Other than that, Amara can also be built for crowd control. A CC Amara is essentially a Phasegrasp-based build with the First of the Elements skill tree. This allows Amara to spam Phasegrasp and comes with a lot of CC damage output that’s very much necessary. Indiscriminate and Wrath are both suitable in this build.
Phasegrasp in action.

So, as you can see, the highlights of the Amara build are melee combat and versatility. There’s a learning curve but playing the Siren is part of a larger experience that’s very rewarding with practice.

Now, some plus points that Amara has pretty much regardless of which build you follow on her:

  • Amara can put out heavy damage by using her melee actions. She can fight with anyone with her bare hands too.
  • Amara can replicate her very powerful abilities of a supernatural Siren. So, it gives the players a wide variety of skills to utilize against various situations and enemies.
  • Amara can use Action Skill, action skill elements, and action skill effects randomly but one at a time. So, the player needs to be selective while using her power against strong opponents.

Borderlands 3 Zane Builds

Zane in Borderlands 3.
You’ll always have a buddy with Zane.

Zane is amazing at taking contracts. He is a retired army officer with an Irish charm and involves himself in Hitman jobs. He can be a good player recommendation because of his variety of tools. With his tools, you can have a wide range of options to win the match. Let’s have a look at his capabilities through his common builds.

  • Zane is better for beginners than Amara is because of his high level of flexibility. His ability to equip two Action Skills at the same time makes him so flexible. But I like to believe that it’s a double-edged sword. You can also easily get confused and lose your game big time if you don’t plan things ahead and fully understand the consequences.
  • Zane is inherently very customizable, so much so that he doesn’t have a single popular build that defines him. To some extent, the Digi-Clone + SNTNL build can be called the go-to favorite. Otherwise, by mixing his various skill trees, you can build a very unique Zane in no time.
  • With a Digi-Clone + SNTNL Zane, you have a high damage output with Doubled Agent. The key aspect of this build is his consistent high gun damage. Go with Synchronicity. A few right early game skill pickups can make him snowball his way into the match.
  • The tanky Zane is not a popular favorite but works like a charm. It works on Barrier and Digi-Clone with Under Cover. This Zane build boosts his survivability by a lot. Hearty Stock is obviously the way to go. Adrenaline also works.
  • The Barrier + SNTNL build is sort of a middle ground. The primary skill tree is Hitman and the focus is between survivability and damage. Violent Speed, Violent Momentum, Violent Violence – all three are great for class mods.

Essentially, the flexibility of Zane can be a boon or a curse depending on the player. If you have a clear purpose in the match, then sticking to one particular style can work in your favor while giving you additional options to expand out with. Otherwise, you won’t be able to play your part effectively in any role.

With that being said, Zane’s build is surely an improvement over Amara’s melee builds. More versatility surely means a lot of customizations to deal with the circumstances as they appear.

Here are some plus points that Zane has irrespective of what build you go for:

  • Zane allows you to fight with his full abilities which are very customizable. It allows the player to set their own strategies.
  • He can’t use his two powers at a time. Both of his powers are strong enough to give you time to recover and prepare for the next. This makes him somewhat overpowered and is the reason why players love him so much.
  • Zane is a master of defense. He has the power to set a barrier anywhere. You can use his barrier while fighting with other enemies. This barrier will give you the time to reload your weapons and fight back again. His skill tree is really handy on the battleground.
  • His high damage build allows you to put massive damage out, do swift mobilization, and increase your survival. He can spam grenades too.


Both have a lot of damage to dish out, but the way they deal it is different.

If playing solo or if you’re new, pick Zane and go with the Barrier + SNTNL build I gave. His overpowering presence on the battlefield can be a good way to start and win.

If you’re a returning player, Amara is the way to go. She’ll be an amazing toolset to dish out the damage and be in the fight longer especially when you understand the game mechanics.

Well, who’d like some shopping?

Amara Collectible Pin with Premium Display Case – The Gearbox-licensed unique cast-zinc alloy pin is a great addition to our armory. Have one yourself from Amazon.

I’ve been very unbiased, see, I even put my Amara pin up for display. But no more. When it comes to controllers (PS4), it’s Zane all the way. He has his amazing Irish charm that you cannot stop loving. Get yours now.

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