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Absolution Summoner Necromancer Build

Absolution Summoner Necromancer Build

One of the most powerful Minion Starter builds with simply absurd single-target DPS

Absolution Necromancer
Starter Build

Updated for Patch 3.17

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Guide notes
February 09, 2022
-Updated for Patch 3.17
Build overview
Tags: [MINION] [ELEMENTAL] [LIFE] [STARTER]

Budget: 

Defenses: 

Boss DPS:

AoE:

 

Absolution is a unique Minion Spell that allows you to summon a new type of Sentinels when you kill enemies that have their debuff, with an extra chance to do so when you hit a Rare or Unique Enemy. With up to three Sentinels of Absolution that deal purely Lightning Spell Damage, you are able to simply melt Bosses within seconds. This applies both to a non-budget version with literally 0 gear requirements, when dealing with lower Tier Bosses, but also to end-game ones' when you have enough currency to invest into Doryani's Prototype and Melding of the Flesh Unique Jewel. This combination lets you easily reach less than -100% Lightning Resistance, which will be the Lightning Resistance value of nearby enemies, including Bosses. In order not to get one-shotted by any Lightning Spells and Attacks, you will have to maintain a high Armour level, which applies to your character via another modifier on your Armour. 

All around, this is one of the best Minion Starter builds in the current Patch. It might offer less AoE coverage than your standard Skeleton Mages builds, but requires no Unique Items, and offers much higher singlet-target damage. It simply should feel better on SSF mode and for players that prefer to farm the Bosses faster. 

You can also check our other Path of Exile builds right over here Odealo's Crafty Guides - Full List

 

1. Gameplay

This is a very simple Minion build where you are simply running around and occasionally casting Absolution to have all three Sentinels active at all times. You can also cast Vortex if using Algor Mortis Gloves to create the chilling grounds that boost your Minions' Lightning DPS, and Convocation to have your Minions instantly teleported to your current location. Other than that, you are only going to use a Mobility Skill (Flame Dash, or Dash if you prefer it for any reason) and Molten Shell. If you allocate the latter under your left mouse button, it will be basically cast automatically whenever off-cooldown. This is an extremely simple and enjoyable build with no complex mechanics and just a few active Skills. 

 

This video was recorded on level 94 Necromancer on Standard League with Doryani's Prototype and around -110% Lightning Resistance. No legacy Scourge items were used to achieve that number, only the Melding of the Flesh Jewel and nearly no extra Lightning Res on gear


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2. Build's PROS & CONS

PROS
  • literally no item requirements making it one of the best League Starter Builds out there
  • insane single-target DPS even on a budget
  • solid AoE and radius of your Minions' abilities
  • all contact viable with investments in gear 
CONS
  • Minions put you into supporting role which may not suit everyone
  • using Doryani's Prototype makes you vulnerable to Lightning DoT effects

 

3. Leveling tips

Leveling most Minion builds is quite easy, but Absolution puts it on a completely different level. You can use all the Minions you would normally do like Zombies, Spectres, or even Raging Spirits, as Absolution doesn't require you to constantly cast the Spell. You only have to refresh the duration every 10 Seconds by occasional recasting the ability, while you can cast all your other Minion or Utility Spells. There are plenty of ways you can level up this Witch character, and you basically can't go wrong with any of it. The simplies way is to use two main setups: Zombies for defensive bonuses and Absolution to take down Bosses. You may even take Spiritual Aid during leveling, the base damage of Absolution Spell has been increased, so with this Passive allocated it will do some extra damage on its own. Below you can find the basic Gem setup and several useful Uniques that will help you get through the campaign unflinched.

Suggested leveling Gem setups:

Raise Zombie setup
Raise Zombie Raise Zombie - the first type of Minions available in the game, they play mainly defensive role, but the extra damage they can deal on lower levels is also reasonable
Minion Life Support Minion Life Support - boosts the Life of your Zombies. Later on, you will need that Gem for your Golem, Spectres, and Animated Guardian so it's good to level it up beforehand
Elemental Army Support Elemental Army Support - make sure that your Zombies deal some Lightning Damage to apply exposure, boosting the DPS of your Absolution Minions
Feeding Frenzy Feeding Frenzy Support - your Zombies can grant you the Feeding Frenzy buff which boosts your Minions' Speed and DPS
Absolution setup
Absolution Absolution - the core Spell used in this build. It's available as early as level 12 and should be used from  that point onward
Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support - boosts the damage of your Sentinels of Absolution considerably
Spell Echo Support Spell Echo Support - repeats the Spells cast by your Sentines of Absolution but also the Absolution itself, making it easier to trigger vs Bosses
Physical to Lightning Damage Support Physical to Lightning Support - allows you to convert 100% of the Sentinels DPS to Lightning type and adds extra Lightning Damage
Utility Gems
Wrath Wrath - boosts the Lightning Spell Damage of you and your Minions
Flame Dash Flame Dash - the recommended Movement Skill for this build
Conductivity Conductivity - the recommended Curse for this build which reduces the Lightning Resistance of affected enemies (this will also apply to negative values when using Doryani's Prototype)

Bandits:

Kill all three Bandits for two additional Skill Points

Leveling Skill Trees:

31 Points Skill Tree
Take Lord of The Dead and Death Attunement and then Redemption and Righteous Army. Optionally also Spiritual Aid if you plan to deal extra damage yourself. On lower levels playing a Minion build, Life/defensive nodes are less important as you can easily avoid damage

63 Points Skill Tree
Again, prioritize DPS nodes like Enduring Bond and Ravenous Horde, then go for extra Life, Spiritual Command and Sacrifice

 

Recommended leveling items:

SidhebreathSidhebreath - affordable Amulet that summoners like to wear during leveling
(20-30)% increased Mana Regeneration Rate
+25% to Cold Resistance
Minions have (10-15)% increased maximum Life
Minions have (10-15)% increased Movement Speed
Minions deal (5-9) to (11-15) additional Cold Damage
(15-10)% reduced Mana Cost of Minion Skills
Perandus SignetPerandus Signet - use it to get more experience and for additional Mana. Allows you to basically spam Absolution for extra damage so make sure to use Spiritual Aid when having it equipped (or other damage dealing Spells)
+(20-30) to maximum Mana
+(25-30) to maximum Mana
(45-65)% increased Mana Regeneration Rate
2% increased Experience gain
2% increased Intelligence for each Unique Item Equipped
3% additional chance for Slain monsters to drop Scrolls of Wisdom
SkullheadSkullhead - good Helmet for Summoners, it increases your Minions survivability and gives you some defensive bonuses as well
(60-80)% increased Armour and Evasion
+(50-70) to maximum Life
+(50-70) to maximum Mana
+(10-20)% to all Elemental Resistances
Minions have +10% Chance to Block Attack Damage
Minions have +(300-350) to Armour
Minions Regenerate 2% of Life per second
Reverberation RodReverberation Rod - a great Wand that grants you an extra Support Gem. Its' Fated version with even more Gems can even be used as cheap six-links for the early Maping phase
(15-19)% increased Spell Damage+2 to Level of Socketed Gems
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 10 Spell Echo
+(10-30) to Intelligence
Tabula RasaTabula Rasa - there is no better leveling Body Armour for this and many other builds
Item has no level requirement and Energy Shield (Hidden)
Item has 6 White Sockets and is fully linked (Hidden)


4. Final Skill Tree, Ascendancy Points, and Pantheon

Final Skill Tree:

102 Points Final Skill Tree (doesn't include Cluster Jewels)
117 Points Path of Building (PoB) link

Ascendancy points:

Preferably in that order:

  1. Mindless Aggression
  2. Unnatural Strength
  3. Plaguebringer
  4. Mistress of Sacrifice

Pantheon:

Major God: Soul of Lunaris: 1% additional Physical Damage Reduction for each nearby Enemy, up to 8%; 1% increased Movement Speed for each nearby Enemy, up to 8% or Soul of Brine King for extra Stun avoidance and Freeze Immunity with Peruna's soul captured

Minor God: Soul of Yugul: 50% chance to Reflect Hexes; You and your Minions take 50% reduced Reflected Damage 

 

5. Final Gems links

[DPS] Absolution setup
Absolution Absolution - primary Spell used in this build which summons up to three Sentinels of Absolution that deal converted Lightning Damage with Spells. It's best to socket it in a Helmet with extra Gems so that you have additional Support for your Spectres/Golem/Animated Guardian
Spell Echo Support Spell Echo Support - causes the Sentinels' Spells to be repeated for massive DPS boost. It also makes you repeat casting Absolution, increasing the chance to summon the Sentinels too
Physical to Lightning Support Physical to Lightning Support - allows for 100% Physical to Lightning Conversion and adds extra Lightning Damage. Must have if using Doryani's Prototype
Increased Critical Strikes Support Increased Critical Strikes Support - this Gem offers high bonus DPS if you are using Precision, Minion Offence Masteries and possibly Kingmaker on your Animated Guardian, all which can scale your Minion's Crit. Damage
Gems provided by the Elder/Shaper Helmet:
Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support - straight up damage boost to all Minion Skills 
Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support - you are going to use Vortex to create Chilling Grounds which will allow you to scale your Sentinels damage via this Gem
[UTILITY] Utility Minions setup
Carrion Golem Summon Carrion Golem - a mandatory Minion that adds Physical Damage to your Sentinels of Absolution, boosting their DPS
Raise Zombie

Raise Spectre - you should be able to summon three or four Spectres in this build so you can summon at least 2 types of Utility Spectres. The recommended ones are:

  1. Carnage Chieftain from Old Fields A2 which can generate Frenzy Charges, you can use two of those
  2. Ancient Wraiths or Ancient Suffering from Haunted Remains zone in Delve. The first one can apply Enfeeble and the second one Temporal Chains Curse. Just pick one of them, and they will add their Curse on top of yours
  3. Pale Seraphim one of the best Spectres from Scourge content. If there's still a way to summon them make sure to do so for extra damage multiplier
  4. Arena Master from Drox influenced Maps. Cast a buff that increases Attack and Cast Speed for you and your Minions
Animate Guardian

Animate Guardian - an amazing Utility Minion that can use items from the ground to have them equipped. We didn't use it in the video as we are constantly changing the builds so the items would go to waste, but if you plan to stick with it for longer, then it's more than worth it. Have it equipped with:

  1. Kingmaker Two Handed Axe for Culling Strike and extra Crit. Multiplier
  2. Mask of the Stitched Demon for MASSIVE Life regeneration
  3. Armour with crafted "Gain 10% of Maximum Life as Maximum Energy Shield" and possibly some extra Life/ES/Chaos Resistance
  4. Boots with Chaos Resistance and Movement Speed
  5. Southbound Gloves for tons of extra Life
Minion Life Support Minion Life Support - makes all the Minions in this setup more durable
Feeding Frenzy Support Feeding Frenzy Support - it makes you Minions aggressive and have them trigger Feeding Frenzy buff on Hit, boosting the Speed of your Sentinels of Absolution as well
Elemental Army Support Elemental Army Support - Minions in this setup will have higher Resistances and also will be able to apply Lightning Exposure to enemies on Hit
[UTILITY] Triggered Gems from your weapon
Desecrate Desecrate - spawns a pile of Corpses that can be used for your Offering Skill. You can use a level 1 Gem here to reduce its Mana cost
Bone Offering Bone Offering - increases Block Chance of yourself and your Minions, making them more tanky
Assassin's Mark Assassin's Mark - boosts the Critical Strike Chance of your Minions and allows them to generate Power Charges
[UTILITY] Flame Dash, Molten Shell, Convocation
Flame Dash Flame Dash - recommended mobility spell, it's instant and you can use it three times in a rapid succession
Molten Shell Molten Shell - the recommended Guard Skill for this build which boosts your Armour Rating and provides a strong protective Shield that absorbs incoming damage
Convocation Convocation - instant-cast Spell that teleports all your Minions to your actual location and grants them increased Life Regeneration
Arcane Surge Arcane Surge Support - grants Arcane Surge buff after spending certain amount of Mana on linked Spells. Keep this Gem at level 5-6 so that it's triggered with each Flame Dash, giving you increased Cast Speed and Mana Regeneration
[UTILITY] Aura setup
(in Shield with increased Mana Reservation Efficiency)
Wrath Wrath - boots Lightning Spell Damage of your Minions. The best DPS Aura for this build
Zealotry Zealotry - another very powerful Caster Aura that increases Spell Damage and Spell Critical Strike Chance. Use only if you have the Shield with increased Efficiency, otherwise prioritize the other two Auras
Determination Determination - boosts your Armour Rating significantly. A must-have if using Doryani's Prototype
[UTILITY] Defiance Banner
Defiance Banner Defiance Banner - this Banner will increase your Armour and Evasion Rating, with the first of the two being one of your main defensive layers
[UTILITY] Vortex
Vortex Vortex - creates Chilling Ground under your character. A must-have if you are using Algor Mortis and/or Hypothermia Support Gem on your Helmet
[UTILITY] Precision
Precision Precision - boots the Critical Strike Chance of your Minions which in this particular setup can reach very high values


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6. Gear Setup

This is a very simple and straightforward Minion build that requires literally 0 Unique Items. Simply get gear with Minion Damage and defensive stats and you will be able to progress through the campaign and lower Tier Maps. However, we have included items for the most powerful Doryani's Prototype setup which relies on reducing your Lightning Resistance to a negative value and having nearby enemies have the same Lightning Resistance as yourself. This makes this one of the best Boss-killing builds out there with simply absurd single-target DPS. It's obviously not necessary and will require extra investments in the Items, but having such a possibility, later on, is what makes this build so interesting. 

Our recommended items will:

  1. Cap your resistances at 75%
  2. Provide you with enough DPS and Life to start mapping

Stat priorities on items:

  1. Maximum Life
  2. Elemental Resistances
  3. Minion Damage
  4. Armour Rating
  5. Level of all Strength/Spell Skill Gems
  6. Attributes
rare helmet(Helmet) Rare Bone Helmet - the best in the Slot item would be a double-influenced Helmet with Minion Damage and Hypothermia (on top of bonus to the level of Socketed Minion Gems). For a budget build, just having Minion Damage should suffice

Min. requirements:
+# to Level of Socketed Minion Gems
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level # Minion Damage
+60 to Maximum Life
Optional affixes:
Elemental Resistances
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level # Hypothermia

Helmet enchantments:
150% increased Effect of the Buff granted by your Carrion Golems
30% increased Assassin's Mark Curse Effect
wand(Weapon) Rare Wand - get as many Minion-related mods as you can afford, and craft the Triggering mod so that don't have to worry about manually casting your core Utility Skills
Min. requirements:
+1 to Level of all Minion
Minions deal 50% increased Damage
Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Use a Skill, with a 8 second Cooldown (crafted)
Optional affixes:
+1 to Level of all Spell Skill Gems
Minions have #% increased Cast Speed
Amplification Rod(Weapon) Amplification Rod - a way to get very cheap six-links for your Absolution setup. This Wand however has Controlled Destruction on it, so it will greatly reduce the Crit. Chance of your Minions, making Precision redundant, and making Conductivity the optimal Curse
(15-19)% increased Spell Damage
+2 to Level of Socketed Gems
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 10 Intensify
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 10 Spell Echo
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 10 Controlled Destruction
+(10-30) to Intelligence
Quiver(Shield) Rare Shield - look for Shield with high Armour and Life and possibly increased Mana Reservation Efficiency so that you can use additional Aura (most likely that will be Zealotry)
Min. requirements:
+90 to maximum Life
Socketed Gems have 30% increased Reservation Efficiency
Optional affixes:
Chance to Block Spell Damage
Elemental and Chaos Resistances
High Armour Rating
Attributes
Rare Armour(Body Armour) Rare Body Armour - in a Starter/budget version, simply pick a random Body Armour with high Life and Resistances. You can also get a piece with increased Effect of your Auras, but it can significantly increase the price
Min. requirements:
+90 to maximum Life
90% Total Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
High Armour Rating
Attributes
#% increased effect of Non-Curse Auras from your Skills
Doryani's Prototype(Body Armour) Doryani's Prototype - the BiS item for this entire setup which will require you to reduce your Lightning Resistance and have nearby enemies to inherit it, allowing you to boost the DPS of your Sentinels of Absolution
(150-200)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
+(60-90) to maximum Life
Deal no Non-Lightning Damage
Armour also applies to Lightning Damage taken from Hits
Lightning Resistance does not affect Lightning Damage taken
Nearby Enemies have Lightning Resistance equal to yours
Boots(Boots) Rare Boots - simply aim for high defensive stats and at least 25% Increased Movement Speed. No fancy stats are required here
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
25% Increased Movement Speed
+60% to Total Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Attributes
Chaos Resistance
Rare Gloves(Gloves) Rare Gloves - again, mainly for defensive stats. If you can afford it, you can apply Unnerved as Implicit mod that will increase the DPS of your Absolution Minions
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
+70% to Total Elemental Resistances
Chance to Unnerve enemies for 4 Seconds on Hit
Optional affixes:
Attributes
Chaos Resistance
Algor Mortis(Gloves) Algor Mortis - a very powerful pair of Gloves that will increase Lightning Damage taken by enemies inside Chilling Grounds you create with the Vortex Spell
+(50-70) to maximum Energy Shield
+(15-20)% to Cold and Lightning Resistances
(20-30)% chance to Sap Enemies in Chilling Areas
Enemies in your Chilling Areas take (25-35)% increased Lightning Damage
(15-20)% increased Effect of Non-Damaging Ailments
Stygian Vise(Belt) Stygian Vise - Stygian Vise is the best base for a Rare Belt thanks to its extra Abyssal Socket. Other than that, just look for defensive stats
Min. requirements:
+80 to Maximum Life
+80% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
#% increased maximum Life
Minions have #% increased maximum Life
Chaos Resistance
Darkness Enthroned(Belt) Darkness Enthroned - the best in slot Belt for this build, if you can afford high-end Abyssal Jewels that is
Has 1 Abyssal Socket
Has 1 Abyssal Socket
75% increased Effect of Socketed Jewels
Amulet(Amulet) Rare Amulet - you will need a lot of Attributes on your Amulet for all the requirements, other than that try getting Life and increases to the Gem level of your Absolution 
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
Attributes (tons of Dexterity preferably)
Optional affixes:
Elemental/Chaos Resistances
+1 to Level of all Strength Skill Gems
+1 to Level of all Physical/Lightning Skill Gems
Recommended Anointments:
Gravepact
Two-Stone Ring(Ring) Rare Rings - look for all the missing stats like Life, Resistances, and Attributes here. There aren't many Minion-related mods that would be easy to get here, so you don't have to forcefully look for such 
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
+80% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Chaos Resistance
Attributes (Dexterity mainly)
Minions have #% increased Movement Speed
Minions deal #% increased Damage
Cobalt Jewel(Jewel) Rare Jewels - pick Life and Minion Damage. You can always get Resistances and Attributes here. These aren't really expensive mods you are looking for, so you can try getting one with "Corrupted Blood cannot be inflicted on you" implicit
Min. requirements:
Maximum Life
Minion Damage
Optional affixes:
Elemental Resistances
Attributes
Ghastly Eye Jewel(Jewel) Abyss Jewels - initially you can skip Jewels nearly entirely and just focus on boosting your Minions' DPS via Passives, but later on when you get Darkness Enthroned Passive, getting good rolled Jewels can be very rewarding
Min. requirements:
+30 to Maximum Life
Minions deal # to # additional Physical/Lightning Damage
Minions deal #% increased Damage if you've used a Minion Skill Recently
Optional affixes:
Attributes
Elemental Resistances
Minions have increased Cast Speed
Melding of the Flesh(Jewel) Melding of the Flesh - the core item if you are using Doryani's Prototype. It offers up to -80% Resistances. You will need a lot of Fire and Cold Resistances on your other items though
(-80-70)% to all Elemental Resistances
Elemental Resistances are capped by your highest Maximum Elemental Resistance instead
Large Cluster Jewel(Jewel) Large Cluster Jewel - at higher levels there aren't many Passives that can be allocated to boost your Minions DPS, so it's the best option to simply go for Cluster Jewels with additional new Passives. You should be able to use one Large Cluster Jewel here
Recommended Passives:
1 Added Passive Skill is Vicious Bite
1 Added Passive Skill is Call to the Slaughter
1 Added Passive Skill is Raze and Pillage
1 Added Passive Skill is Renewal
Medium Cluster Jewel(Jewel) Medium Cluster Jewel - you should use two Medium Cluster Jewels. The most basic option is to go for the Minion ones, but you can also grab Curse one for Unnerve and damage multiplier from Evil Eye
Recommended Passives:
1 Added Passive Skill is Feasting Fiends
1 Added Passive Skill is Renewal
1 Added Passive Skill is Master of Fear
1 Added Passive Skill is Evil Eye
Small Cluster Jewel(Jewel) Small Cluster Jewel - simply for extra defensive utility. You may as well use regular or Abyss Jewels instead. Having Enduring Composure is nice but you should be aware that it will slightly increase your Lightning Resistance as well
Recommended Passives:
1 Added Passive Skill is Fettle
1 Added Passive Skill is Enduring Composure
1 Added Passive Skill is Mystical Ward
Fortress Covenant(Jewel) Fortress Covenant - a solid DPS boost for your Minions. If you socket it inside a Cluster Jewel, the negative effect will be ignored
Minions deal (35-45)% increased Damage
Minions have +(10-12)% Chance to Block Attack Damage
Minions have +(10-12)% Chance to Block Spell Damage
Notable Passive Skills in Radius are Transformed to
instead grant: Minions take 20% increased Damage
 Rumi's Concoction(Flask) Rumi's Concoction - one of the best defensive flasks in the game, it increases your Armour and increases your chance to Block
+1500 to Armour
+(8-12)% Chance to Block Attack Damage during Flask effect
+(4-6)% Chance to Block Spell Damage during Flask effect
Bottled Faith(Flask) Bottled Faith - use Bottled Faith for more Critical Strike Chance, More DPS, and Life Regeneration, it's an expensive Flask but it is worth its price as most of the bonuses will apply to your Minions 
40% increased Damage
Creates Consecrated Ground on Use
(20-40)% increased Duration
Consecrated Ground created by this Flask has Tripled Radius
Consecrated Ground created during Effect applies (7-10)% increased Damage taken to Enemies
(100-150)% increased Critical Strike Chance against Enemies on Consecrated Ground during Flask effect

Other suggested Flasks:

  1. Divine Life Flask with Bleed removal/immunity
  2. Quicksilver Flask for increased mobility
  3. Basalt Flask with random ailment removal or reduced Effect of Curses on you
Rumi's ConcoctionBottled FaithDivine Life Flaskquicksilver flaskBasalt Flask


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If you have any other build requests please leave that in the comments below. We are always open to suggestions and constructive feedback.

Pictures used in this article are the intellectual property of Grinding Gear Games.