The Summoner Necromancer is a classic in Diablo games. This build deals an insane amount of single target damage and decent Area of Effect (AoE) damage. You will have nearly 100% uptime on Command Skeletons, Command Golem, Skeletal Mage, and Dark Curse! As the commander on the battlefield, you are able to move freely and safely as your minions do your bidding.
Solo Build - Summoner Necromancer
There isn't a Chest Legendary Item that synergizes with the Summoner Necromancer build, but we recommend using Parting Gift or Exhumant's Backbone as they are great in other builds.
With the Summoner Necromancer build, you want to stutter step while constantly using your primary attack. Drop your Skeletal Mage in key positions to keep a kill streak going, or on top of the boss to focus their attacks. Keep your Golem and Skeletons in the fight by moving them from one pack to the next.
- Summon your Molten Golem via Command Golem.
- Summon your Skeletal Mage, if you are in a good position to do so.
- Activate Command Skeletons and Command Golem to order your Skeletal Champions and Molten Golem to leap/charge close to the Skeletal Mage.
- Cast Dark Curse on top of all of your summons to increase their attack and movement speed. Pay attention to your Skeletal Mage cooldown, and delay your Dark Curse cast if you can summon another Skeletal Mage in the next 3 seconds.
- Use Command Skeletons to buff your Skeletal Champions as soon as it comes off cooldown.
- Use Command Golem on cooldown to have the Molten Golem leap wherever there are 5 or more enemies. Using this ability against bosses is a DPS loss.
- Use your Soulfire primary attack to fill in all gaps between these other steps.
Check out our Dungeons guide for more information.
Players fill certain roles when doing Dungeons, whether that be clearing out all the enemies, buffing the team or being the ultimate boss killer. The more you diversify your group the more successful your farming will be. The Summoner Necromancer is all about the damage. Save your Ultimate for the final boss in each dungeon. Getting through Dungeons quickly is essential to accumulate Set Items in mass. Keep an eye on the Codex to see which Dungeons are offering bonus rewards so you can get the most out of your time farming them!
Legendary and Normal Gems
Legendary Gems provide incredible attribute bonuses and unique effects. They are found as a reward after completing an Elder Rift that is enhanced with a Legendary Crest. Many of them are also crafted using Runes and Platinum at the Jeweler in Westmarch.
Read our Legendary Gems Guide for more information.
- Tourmaline is better than Ruby, since Damage is better than Life.
- Sapphire is better than Aquamarine, since Armor Penetration (Critical Hit Damage) is better than Armor (Increased Damage Reduction On Block).
- Topaz is slightly better than Citrine, but All Resistance and Potency are both underwhelming attributes. Prefer Topaz over Citrine since you will be hit by crowd controlling effects more often than you will be using them.
The Necromancer's main attribute is Intelligence, giving +0.3 Damage per point. All other things equal, use gear with Intelligence to maximize the damage you deal. Vitality is also important for the boosts to your Life pool.
Necromancer's worst attribute is Strength because it only gives +1 OR/DR. If possible, don't use it.
- Intelligence +1 Combat Rating and +0.3 Damage.
- Fortitude +1 Combat Rating, +0.1 Armor, and +0.1 Armor Penetration. Armor increases damage reduced from a Block, which mitigates a base of 20% of incoming damage. Armor Penetration gives Critical Hit Damage, which is nice if you already have a high Critical Hit Chance.
- Vitality +1 Combat Rating and +3 Life. It never hurts to have more life, especially for end game pushes and PvP. Vitality is the best attribute after the damage-dealing ones.
- Willpower +1 Combat Rating, +0.1 Potency, and +0.1 Resistance. Potency increases the duration of harmful effects on enemies, while Resistance lowers the duration of harmful effects on you from enemies. Maybe one day in Diablo Immortal these durations will play a larger role, but currently they don't seem to matter much and are never prioritized.
- Strength +1 Combat Rating but gives nothing more, making it the worst attribute.
Check out our Attributes Mechanics Guide for more information.
Because the total amount of primary attributes is so important, you rarely prioritize special attributes on gear. Still, several special attributes can make a difference, here are some of the best ones you can find:
- Critical Hit Chance to proc Everlasting Torment attack speed effect at Rank 6.
- Damage done by your summons increased to slay even faster!
- Damage taken by your summons decreased to increase your summons' survivability.
Bonus Attributes, Family Bonus, and Reforging
Family bonuses are hard to change so picking a powerful option is important. Here are some of the best Family Bonuses available for the Necromancer:
- Ravager's Family Bonus has a chance to make your enemies corpse explode and deal AoE damage, making it virtually useless in PvP and mediocre at best in PvE. The Family Bonus Attributes on the other hand are great for a Summoner Necromancer, because they have 2 important attribute rolls: Damage done by your summons increased (3.0% - 4.0%) and Damage taken by your summons decreased (3.0% - 4.0%).
- Vengeance's Family Bonus is AMAZING for classes that heavily use their Primary Attack, each said attack has a chance to increase All Damage by 100% for 1s. Its Family Bonus Attributes are not ideal though.
For more details, see our Upgrading and Reforging Guide.
Focus on Awakening your gear with 1 star Gems at first (Freedom and Devotion, Berserker's Eye, Everlasting Torment etc.). For the Necromancer, we recommend Awakening your items in this order:
Check out our Awakening Guide for more information.
Check out our Paragon Guide for more information.
Hungry for more Guides?
- Dominate Bounties, Elder Rifts, Lairs and Tasks with this build.
- Watch your minions destroy everything using the Command Skeletons, Skeletal Mage, and Command Golem. Watch them do it even faster with Dark Curse.
- Equip Guided by Maggots, Desolatoria, Visitant's Sign, Linger-Mantle and the Shepherd's Call to Wolves for maximum power.
- Rank up Normal and Legendary Gems for huge bonuses while hunting for a Ravager Family Bonus.
- Seek out Critical Hit Chance and Damage Special Attributes with Intelligence and Fortitude Primary Attributes.
- Awaken gear slots to boost your Command Golem and Command Skeletons to another level.
- Accumulate Paragon and invest in all the Damage nodes you can find while picking up key active nodes.
- The way is shut. It was made by those who are Dead, and the Dead keep it, until the time comes. The way is shut.
Written by Gregg2G
Contributions by Facefoot
Reviewed by Facefoot, Raxxanterax
Updated from Beta recommendations to Release recommendations.