Diablo 3: The Best Necromancer Builds, Ranked

There is perhaps no class that looks so different from build to build in Diablo 3 than the Necromancer. Players can specialize in creating minions, blowing up enemy bodies, face-to-face combat, ranged spellcasting, and more. From looking at success rates in the greater rifts, it becomes apparent that each such build has merit.

It’s tough to rank which one is best because personal taste accounts for so much of what makes the Necromancer feel special. Nevertheless, the community has put up statistical data and shared their feelings in the forums, so there are some choice strategies for success that rise to the top.

10 – Blood Nova With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Siphon Blood (Drain Life), Simulacrum (Blood and Bone), Bone Armor (Dislocation), Blood Rush (Potency), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands), Frailty (Aura of Frailty)
  • Passive skills: Swift Harvesting, Eternal Torment, Spreading Malediction, Stand Alone
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Scythe of the Cycle, Iron Rose
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Life on Hit

This is a build that has absolutely no issue with being surrounded; it’s actually preferred. The more enemies that try to attack you, the more health and damage you’ll gain.

9 – Skeletal Mages With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Simulacrum (Reservoir), Frailty (Scent of Blood), Bone Armor (Dislocation), Skeletal Mage (Life Support), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands), Devour (Cannibalize)
  • Passive skills: Overwhelming Essence, Blood is Power, Life from Death, Final Service
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Scythe of the Cycle, Lost Time
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Cooldown Reduction, Armor, Area Damage

Choosing to magnify your essence pool by borrowing from your life pool will always come with some serious risks. Those who manage this balance are rewarded with a rotation that will never need to wait and a Skeletal Mage that can dish it some scary numbers.

8 – Bone Storm

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Cursed Scythe), Decrepify (Dizzying Curse), Corpse Lance (Brittle Touch), Blood Rush (Potency), Bone Armor (Dislocation), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands)
  • Passive skills: Stand Alone, Spreading Malediction, Blood is Power, Overwhelming Essence
  • Key Armor Sets: Grace of Inarius, Endless Walk
  • Key Weapons: Krysbin’s Sentence, Reilina’s Shadowhook
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Area Damage

Frozen, poisoned, stunned, and cursed — all of these are status effects that the Bone Storm build can apply. What this build lacks in burst, it makes up for by keeping your enemies dealing with problems so you can whittle them down.

7 – Corpse Lance With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Corpse Lance (Brittle Touch), Simulacrum (Reservoir), Decrepify (Borrowed Time), Blood Rush (Molting), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands), Devour (Satiated)
  • Passive skills: Overwhelming Essence, Blood is Power, Spreading Malediction, Stand Alone
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Trag’Oul’s Corroded Fang, Lost Time
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Cooldown Reduction, Armor, Area Damage

Corpse Lance is a fantastic move to build around as it does a great deal of damage for a target while also making it susceptible to additional attacks. This build assures that its only drawback, being able to spam the ability, is rectified with a vengaence.

6 – Generator

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Cursed Scythe), Simulacrum (Blood and Bone), Command Skeletons (Kill Command), Skeletal Mage (Contamination), Bone Spear (Blighted Marrow), Bone Armor (Dislocation)
  • Passive skills:
  • Key Armor Sets: Grace of Inarius
  • Key Weapons: Stand Alone, Spreading Malediction, Swift Harvesting, Overwhelming Essence
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Area Damage

Usually, lots of minions come with the downside of lacking single pulses of damage. That is not the case with the Generator build. You’ll be catching enemies in your storm and using the Simulacrum to blow up anything nearby.

5 – Command Skeletons With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Cursed Scythe), Land of the Dead (Plaguelands), Death Nova (Blight), Command Skeletons (Kill Command), Bone Spear (Blighted Marrow), Bone Armor (Dislocation)
  • Passive skills: Aberrant Animator, Swift Harvesting, Eternal Torment, Spreading Malediction
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Trag’Oul’s Corroded Fang, Bone Ringer
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Attack Speed, Armor, Life on Hit

Legacy of Dreams frees this build from collecting set bonuses. As a result, it can focus on a combination of abilities. The Command Skeletons move will keep enemies occupied while you focus on inflicting loads of poison damage.

4 – Poison Scythe With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Cursed Scythe), Simulacrum (Blood and Bone), Siphon Blood (Power Shift), Skeletal Mage (Contamination), Bone Spear (Blighted Marrow), Bone Armor (Dislocation)
  • Passive skills: Stand Alone, Spreading Malediction, Swift Harvesting, Overwhelming Essence
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Trag’Oul’s Corroded Fang, Leger’s Disdain
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Area Damage

The Grim Scythe is part of various builds, but it becomes very special when it is invested into. The wide swing is great against clusters and the damage is substantial enough to make bosses live in fear.

3 – Corpse Explosion With Legacy Of Dreams

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Cursed Scythe), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands), Corpse Explosion (Close Quarters), Blood Rush (Potency), Siphon Blood (Power Shift), Bone Armor (Dislocation)
  • Passive skills: Spreading Malediction, Blood is Power, Stand Alone, Overwhelming Essence
  • Key Armor Sets: None
  • Key Weapons: Trag’Oul’s Corroded Fang, Iron Rose
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Area Damage

Corpse Explosion was considered a gimmick for a long time until some very outside-of-the-box thinkers put together this build. Now you can detonate dead bodies for Wizard-like damage numbers even in the toughest rifts.

2 – Bone Spear

  • Active skills: Grim Scythe (Frost Scythe), Bone Armor (Dislocation), Blood Rush (Potency), Decreptify (Enfeeblement), Bone Spear (Blighted Marrow), Simulacrum (Reservoir)
  • Passive skills: Spreading Malediction, Serration, Stand Alone, Bone Prison
  • Key Armor Sets: Masquerade of the Burning Carnival
  • Key Weapons: Scythe of the Cycle, Lost Time
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Intelligence
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Critical Hit Damage, Armor, Area Damage

If you’re looking for the best overall damage per second output, look no further than the Bone Spear build. On its own, Bone Spear is considered an average ability at best, but with the Masquerade of the Burning Carnival, it becomes a move that wipes out enemies in clusters or one-on-one all the same.

1 – Support

  • Active skills: Death Nova (Blight), Devour (Cannibalize), Corpse Lance (Brittle Touch), Blood Rush (Metabolism), Land of the Dead (Frozen Lands), Frailty (Aura of Frailty)
  • Passive skills: Blood is Power, Life from Death, Eternal Torment, Final Service
  • Key Armor Sets: Pestilence Master’s Shroud, Captain Crimson’s Trimmings
  • Key Weapons: In-geom, Stormshield
  • Augment: Intelligence
  • Gems: Vitality
  • Paragon: Movement Speed, Cooldown Reduction, Armor, Globe Radius

It should be no surprise that players who have delved the deepest into the greater rifts have learned to work together. While “Support” might not sound like fun, this is actually a combination of tanking and group damage, so it’s highly recommended if you want to be the MVP of your party.

NEXT: Diablo 3: The Best Solo Classes Ranked From Worst To Best

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Hodey Johns is a writer for Game Rant based out of the Rocky Mountains in North Ogden, Utah. He’s had a passion for video games and literature since he was a child growing up along the beach in San Diego, California. As a graduate of Theology from Liberty University, he puts his experience with religion, philosophy, and debate into his work. His other interests include sports, bike riding, and good old-fashioned barbecue.

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