A necro who relies primarily on killer scythe/CE for killing. I'm currently able to run nearly anywhere on p1 hell difficulty.


Bone Armor 20
Killer Scythe 25
Poison Slash 25
Bone Prison 20
CE, Clay Golem, Golem Mast, Summon Resist, Amp, Decrep, Pierce flesh, dim vision and prereqs 1 each.

Depending on the situation and how you like to play, you may make use of all these skills. This is not a powerhouse, but it does have tactics. If you're willing to try to tank it out yourself, forget the points in the summon tree and sink them somewhere into the Poison and Bone tree.

Spending Stat Points

Minimum Required for Equipment
Varies depending on how your attack rating is.


The only thing set in stone here is your alternate weapon. Nupraptor's Servant and Eradicator (Heirophant trophy, sacrificial dagger). This gives you a massive +15 to bone armor and poison slash when equipped.

Some of my more major items are a KoKoRo Demon skull (Good resists, +15% F/C/L absorb) and a Duress'ed Soul Destroyer. The ES Duress, not the LoD one. As a base weapon, it's hard to beat. Decent ED, IAS, +3 all skills and the big one, 75% slow to enemies. This stacks with decrep so it's possible to turn a normally strong boss, or crowd of monsters, into a slow moving blob. The ultimate weapon would probably be a Grief runeword for the huge + to base damage. Killer scythe winds up giving you an enourmous % enhanced damage (mine is currently around 1,270) so + to base damage is extremely helpful.

The one item I have that let's me play around safely in hell is an amulet with shout as an oskill. +11, which goes up to +19 with all my +skills equip.

Charms can be used to fill in any gaps. Or give you +skill tabs if you don't have any.

Here are some mods to look for/avoid if you intend to play like I do (see strategy section)

Monsters RIP (This is okay on a merc, but not for you)
CtC curses
Hit Blinds Target
Hit Freezes Target

Look for:
AR (base AR, not %)
Resists (very important)
Some type of Oskill to help with defense, preferably not an aura.
life/mana after kill (low priority, but helpful)
And of course all the +life and +max life% you can lay your hands on.
Possibly PDR. I don't know if PDR applies when the damage is being absorbed by bone armor. If it does, get it. If not, don't bother. If your bone armor goes down, you're basically dead.


In my experience, a hireling to help with PI monsters when you can't break immunity is what would be most helpful. An A2 conviction merc or one of the A3 mercs should fit the bill. Note that if you go with an A3 merc it might be worth putting a point into lower resist. In my case I just went with the rogue I got as a reward in A1 and she helps out well enough.

Strategy & Tips

It's hard to get high life as a necro. Bone armor makes up for this as far as physical damage goes. My bone armor currently absorbs somewhere around 3800 damage, and gives that much defense to match. This defense can then be boosted by whatever other skills you have. However, this only helps with physical damage. This means that having good resists and absorb is absolutely essential, because you don't have the life to take heavy hits.

Bone armor will start with 3 "walls" of bone circling you. As it absorbs damage, it will drop to two, then one, then it'll be gone. Recasting bone armor before it drops completely will refresh it. However, only if it's at an equal or higher skill level. This leads to an odd quirk: Do not get skill shrines. Ever. That extra +2 to bone armor you have means that once the skill shrine wears off, you can't recast it until the current one drops completely. Meaning that, if only for an instant, about 75% of your life and defense is gone until you cast bone armor again.

Getting that first corpse can somtimes be a problem. The clay golem is there to act as a distraction while you kill the monsters. After you have some revives, the attention gets spread out. Amp or decrep everything, kill it at your liesure.

Bone prison and dim vision are your two panic buttons for crowd control. Prison stops them from moving entirely and will also block most ranged attacks. Dim vision stops them in their tracks, but its duration is pathetic. Be careful when using bone prison. I don't know what it is, but monsters come from miles around when you use it. However, it can be very helpful for bosses who only have a short range for their melee attack if you have a long range melee weapon (4 or 5, basically). You cast a bone prison, and then you can smack them from across the wall while they can't hit back. Works great for LE bosses until your resists get up there.

There's two other ways to make use of dim vision. First is with shaman packs. Blind the shaman. If he can't see, he can't raise. Kill his minions, run up to him and kill him. You can do the reverse with a boss pack. Dim vision the whole pack. The boss won't be dimmed, so he'll run out and leave his minions behind. Take him out, then take care of his minions.

How to deal with physical immunities: Bwaaahahahahaha! Ha! Heh. Amp. Swing away. The only time this won't work is when you have a stone-skinned boss monster who is naturally PI anyway. The other instance is when you have a Posessed PI monster. In both cases, this is what that high level poison slash is for. Hit them with Pierce Flesh & Bone, then let the poison do its thing. Nupraptor's skull is worth seeking out for this reason, as you then have -50% to enemy poison resist, making you that much more effective. If you run across a phys/poison immune monster and can't break either immunity, you're basically screwed.

Your attack rating is going to be the biggest weakness that needs to be overcome. Killer scythe gives a huge amount of +AR%. Not quite as much as ED, but a lot. The biggest thing you need from base items then is +AR. I lucked out and found a ring which is currently giving me +500 or so (+103 base, +400-ish based on clvl) and even that's not enough to cut it. About the only thing you can easily do to help this is sacrifice some vitality and pump it into dex. As a basic rule to go by, 17,000 is the minimum AR you need to reliable hit anything in the normal areas. Bosses can still be troublesome to hit, but between decrep and bone prison you should be safe enough that you don't need to hit them too reliably to win out in the end.

Magic attacks will make you dead. They come entirely from the various Horadrim ancients (raise undead, have a bone-scythe for an arm, etc) and some types of Magus Vipers who will cast bone spear. Be very careful around these guys. Let the vipers target your revives, then try to flank them. Or dim vision the whole lot and keep them that way until most of them are dead.

This build requires some pretty fast hotkey fingerwork, but it's satisfying to match a tactic to a situation instead of just bowling everything over with huge damage.

Finally, a note on killer scythe. Despite what the description says, it currently works with any two-handed weapon. You are not just limited to polearms. Don't be afraid to go for a Titan Maul or something. Death blades look particularly cool.

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Last-modified: 05-19-2007 (Sat) 20:01:22 (4797d)