Getting Started as a Summoner Necromancer in Diablo II: Resurrected

Diablo II Necromancer

Let’s talk Diablo II: Resurrected and the Necromancer.

The Necromancer isn’t the most popular character, nor is it the most picked. And with good reason. The Necromancer is not the easiest class to play, but it can be very, very rewarding with the right build.

If you want to play the Necromancer and you’re not sure where to start, this guide will help you. We’ll be sharing some tips and tricks on how to use the Necromancer more effectively so you too can play on the harder difficulties. There are a few specific builds for the Necromancer, which you can see below, but in this article we will be focusing primarily on the Summoner Necromancer. It offers great survivability and has very good potential in both co-op and in solo play.

Curse Necromancer:Focuses on Curses and weakens enemy abilities
Bone and Poison Necromancer:Focuses on Bone and Poison Spells.
Summoner Necromancer:Focuses on summoning minions to aid you.
Bone Necromancer:Focuses on using spells like Bone Spear and Bone Wall to destroy enemies at range.
Poison Nova Necromancer:Focuses on using AoE to wipe out a ton of enemies simultaneously.

The main stats you will be focusing on for your Summoner Necromancer – or “summonmancer” – are the following:

  • Energy – Not as important as the rest but will stop you having to stock up on mana potions the whole time, as this can become tiresome. Just investing a few points here will do the trick.
  • Strength – You can focus a lot of points here as this will allow you to use heavier armor and weapons.
  • Vitality – This is probably by far the most important stat you will want to focus on. More vitality means more health, and more health means surviving longer. Especially important for higher difficulty levels.
  • Faster Cast Rate and Faster Hit Recovery (FCR + FHR) – These two stats will determine how quickly your Necromancer can cast spells and recover from being stunned. This is also a crucial stat to focus on.

Beginner build to get you started

The Necromancer is very squishy early on in Diablo II: Resurrected. That’s especially true if you are investing in Poison and Bone spells. They are the most effective for end-game, but very difficult to start the game with. If you are starting out as a Summon Necromancer, you’ll want to primarily focus on Raise Skeleton and Skeleton Mastery. You should also invest some points into Amplify Damage and Corpse Explosion.

For gear, try to equip anything with +Skill, +Vitality and +Mana regeneration. You should also try to stock up on some Tir runes. This, when socketed, will provide you with +2 mana per kill.

The table below suggests how to level up your Summoner Necromancer in the early game of Diablo II: Resurrected.

2Raise Skeleton (1)
3Skeleton Mastery (1)
4Amplify Damage (1)
5Teeth (1)
6Corpse Explosion (1)
Skill point from Den of EvilClay Golem (1)
7–11Raise Skeleton (6)
12Skeletal Mage (1)
13–26Raise Skeleton (20)
Skill point from Radament’s LairGolem Mastery (1)

Runes and Runewords

Runes and Runewords can make or break your playthrough. If done right, your character will perform completely different. If you don’t know what runes and runewords are, we recommend you read this very helpful high runes guide. The best runewords for the Summoner Necromancer are:

Bone (Sol + Um + Um)This will boost all your Resistances; lower the damage you take and increase your Necromancer + Skills.
White (Dol + Io)This will make all your Bone skills stronger and increase your mana.
Enigma (Jah + Ith + Ber)This will improve your walk speed, teleportation, strength and health + mana regeneration.
Heart of Oak (Ko + Vex + Pul + Thul)This will boost your vitality and your damage against demons whilst increasing Resistance.

End game gear

Apart from its minions, the Summoner Necromancer also relies heavily on gear that increases +Skill damage. That’s because everything you summon is part of your skills. So, naturally any gear that grants +Skill will boost all your minions’ damage output. The following gear is recommended for the Summonmancer.

  • Helm – Andariel’s Visage. This offers +Skill and life regeneration per hit. Allowing you to stay alive longer.
  • Body Armor – Trang-Oul’s Scales. Also offers +Skills
  • Belt – Arachnid Mesh. Gives +Skill.
  • Boots – Marrowalk Boots. Increased Skeleton Master and Poison Resist.
  • Gloves – Magefist. This offers a much-needed Mana Regeneration.
  • Weapon – Ethereal Beast
  • Shield – Boneflame. Gives +Skill and increased Resistance.
  • Ring 1 – Stone of Jordan. Gives +Skill
  • Ring 2 – Another Stone of Jordan or Bul-Kathos’ Wedding Ring
  • Amulet – Mara’s Kaleidoscope.
  • Charms – Hellfire Torch; Annihilus; 9x Summoning Grand Charms with Life or Faster Hit Recovery; 10 Small Charms with Life, Resistances, Mana, or Faster Hit Recovery, depending on what you need or the situation.

Tips and tricks

  • We recommend playing with other players. Not only does this make the game easier and more enjoyable, but your Necromancer and skeletons can benefit from ally perks and abilities.
  • Be careful when playing in close quarters. Having a tonne of minions around you can sometimes block your exit path or open unwanted doors, allowing a new wave of monsters to come in.
  • Always keep your minions at max numbers. If a skeleton dies from a previous battle, resurrect a new one before engaging in the next battle.
  • Use your minions to your advantage. Stand behind them, use them to target specific enemies, let them draw fire away from you etc.
  • Consider hiring a Desert Warrior Merc from Act II. They come with various auras depending on your difficulty level. On Nightmare, they have the Might Aura, which boosts your minion’s damage.

With the right build, the Necromancer can be a very enjoyable character to play as in Diablo II: Resurrected. There is just something about summoning and controlling the undead that appeals to us. And, the Necromancer just looks cool. Sure, the Necromancer might not have as many builds and variety compared to other classes, but there’s still a build for everyone, regardless of your playstyle. No matter which Necromancer build you decide to go for, it’s a rewarding way to play.

If you are playing and feel stuck, check out some of the many D2R ladder items available on SSEGold. It might just give you the boost that you need.