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Cremation Archmage Necromancer Build

Cremation Archmage Necromancer Build

A powerful Spell Caster build which can face tank most Bosses thanks to insane Mana Regeneration and The Agnostic Passive

Phantasmal Cremation
Necromancer Build

Updated for Patch 3.17

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Guide notes
October 12, 2020
-Build created
March 29, 2022
-Updated for Patch 3.17
April 6, 2022
-Updated gameplay video
Build overview



Boss DPS:



Cremation is a Skill that detonate a nearby corpse to create geysers that shoot fiery projcetiles randomly in their radius. However, the Phantasmal version will also grant them a chance to kill additional nearby corpse to deal AoE damage based on the Corps's life. This allows you to deal damage not via the Spell itself, but rather creating additional corpses with increased Life to repeat those explosions. For this combination to work fully, you should also use Phantasmal Unearth - a projectile Spell that creates corpses from each projectile fired, but also with greatly increased Life from yet another alternate Quality modifier. This build's performance can be further amplified by using the new Ashes of the Stars Amulet, that increases the level and Quality of all Active Gems. As a result, your Cremation will have greatly increased chance to detonate corpses, while Unearth will create corpses with nearly 200% Increased Maximum Life from Quality alone. All around, this build can offer tons of damage by spamming Unearth with greatly increased Cast Speed from Corpse Pact Passive that will explode instantly from your Cremation geysers.

At the same time, this is one of the most durable builds out there. It's a Chaos Inoculation build that is immune to Chaos Damage, it benefits from very high Armour Rating (up to 50-60k), with instant Energy Shield Recovery on Block from Aegis Aurora Shield. Combined with Melding of the Flesh Unique Jewel, you can also push your Elemental Resistances to over 80% each, greatly mitigating Elemental Damage taken by your character. 

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1. Gameplay

This is a very straightforward spell caster build where you carelessly run around Maps and face-tank Bosses spamming your core DPS and Utility Spells. You basically need to cast Unearth to create corpses (if there are none in radius) and cast Cremation to create Geysers that deal massive Spell Damage with Projectiles - it's the most similar to a Trap or Mine build more than Caster or Summoner. You should also spam Flame Wall if you're using one and Bone Offering for extra Damage and Block Chance. For Auras use Discipline, Determination, Tempest Shield, Purity of Elements, and Defiance Banner. The best-performing Curse is Punishment, but also Flammability and Elemental Weakness will work, and for a Movement Skill use the default Flame Dash.

Full gameplay video:

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2. Build's PROS & CONS

  • insane defenses that allow you to face-tank most of the content
  • high DPS from multiple Cremation Geysers dealing increased damage from exploding Corpses
  • requires no expensive Uniques
  • very good clear speed
  • all content viable
  • can't do No/Less Regeneration and Elemental Reflect Map mods
  • Alternate Quality Gems can be very expensive


3. Leveling tips

For leveling, we recommend using Spellslinger Support with either Cremation or Volatile Dead. The latter will offer better clear speed, but with Cremation, you should be able to understand the skill a bit more before switching to use it entirely for high Tier content. You have to options when you level up this build, either you use two Spellslinger Supports with Desecrate and Cremation (Volatile Dead if you want to make it faster) or Spellslinger Cremation, Desecrate in Poet's Pen, and an additional Aura/Herald for damage increase - Anger, Herald of Ash, Herald of Ice, will all work. Either way, you will also need to work on your Mana Regeneration, in order to spam your Attack while having most of your Mana Reserved.

Suggested leveling Gem setups:

Cremation/Volatile Dead setup
Cremation Cremation - the primary Spell used in this build. It makes a targeted corpse explode and creates a Geyser that fires projectiles around it dealing high Area Damage. In most cases, you will have to create the corpse yourself with Desecrate
Spellslinger Support Spellslinger Support - you will cast a linked Spell (Cremation) automatically whenever you attack with your Want. You need to active Spellslinger which will Reserve Mana in order for it to work
Added Lightning Damage Support Added Lightning Damage Support - adds a lot of Lightning Damage 
Elemental Focus Support Elemental Focus Support - greatly increases Elemental Damage of Supported Skills
Desecrate setup
Desecrate Desecrate - creates Corpses for your Cremation (or Volatile Dead) Spell. It has to be triggered automatically by a second Spellslinger setup, or via Poet's Pen Wand
Spell Cascade Support Spell Cascade Support - makes supported AoE Spell repeat itself in two extra Areas. For Desecrate it basically makes you create a lot of additional Corpses
Spellslinger Support Spellslinger Support - if you don't have a Poet's Pen Wand, make sure to trigger Desecrate via Spellslinger Support
Frenzy setup
Frenzy Frenzy - it's the recommended Attack that will trigger your Spells. There is no actual need to Support it with anything, but you can add Faster Attacks to help it trigger Spells faster
Faster Attacks Support Faster Attacks Support
Utility Gems
Herald of Ash Herald of Ash - increases your Fire Damage and causes AoE Explosions when you kill enemies
Clarity Clarity - grants increased Mana Regeneration Rate. It's very useful on lower levels, and you don't have to increase its level at all
Flame Dash Flame Dash - recommended mobility Spell


We recommend killing all the Bandits for two additional Passive Points

Leveling Skill Trees:

33 Points Skill Tree
Priorities: 1) Heart and Soul 2) Light of Divinity 3) Devotion 4) Cruel Preparation

71 Points Skill Tree
Priorities: 1) Sovereignty 2) Elemental Overload 3) Purity of Flesh 4) Heart of Flame 5) Undertaker

Recommended leveling items:

Poet's PenPoet's Pen - an amazing leveling Wand that can help you trigger Desecrate
(11-15)% increased Spell Damage
+1 to Level of Socketed Active Skill Gems per 25 Player Levels
Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Attack with this Weapon, with a 0.25 second Cooldown
Adds 3 to 5 Physical Damage to Attacks with this Weapon per 3 Player Levels
(8-12)% increased Attack Speed
PraxisPraxis - it reduces the Mana Cost of all your Skills by a huge amount, allowing you to spam most of your Spells while a lot of your Mana is Reserved by Auras/Heralds or Spellslinger Spells
+(20-30) to maximum Mana
+(30-60) to maximum Mana
Regenerate (3-6) Mana per second
-(8-4) to Total Mana Cost of Skills
8% of Damage taken Recouped as Mana
Le Heup of AllLe Heup of All - perfect choice for the whole leveling process. Adds a fair amount of Attributes, extra Damage, and Resistances
(10-30)% increased Damage
+(10-30) to all Attributes
(10-30)% increased Rarity of Items found
+(10-30)% to all Elemental Resistances
GoldrimGoldrim - the best leveling Helmet in PoE which adds a ton of extra Resistances
+(30-50) to Evasion Rating
10% increased Rarity of Items found
+(30-40)% to all Elemental Resistances
Reflects 4 Physical Damage to Melee Attackers
Level Requirement reduced by 100 (Hidden)
Victario's FlightVictario's Flight - a great leveling pair of Boots that has high bonus Movement Speed and extra Mana Recovery mechanic
+15 to Dexterity
+15 to Intelligence
(100-150)% increased Evasion Rating
15% increased Movement Speed
(5-10)% of Damage taken gained as Mana over 4 seconds when Hit
10% increased Movement Speed for you and nearby Allies


4. Final Skill Tree, Ascendancy Points, and Pantheon

Final Skill Tree:

112 Points Final Skill Tree (does not include Passives from the Cluster Jewel)
119 Points Path of Building(PoB) link

Ascendancy points:

Preferably in that order:

  1. Plaguebringer
  2. Corpse Pact
  3. Essence Glutton
  4. Mistress of Sacrifice


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%. Optionally, you can also pick Soul of the Brine King for some additional Stun resistance

Minor God: Soul of Gruthkul 1% additional Physical Damage Reduction for each Hit you've taken Recently up to a maximum of 5%


5. Final Gems links

[DPS] Cremation setup
Cremation Phantasmal Cremation - your main all-purpose Spell which deals a high Area Damage with projectiles. You need Corpses for it to "work" which will be created manually by Unearth. You should also get Phantasmal Cremation which will have a chance to detonate additional Corpses, which is the core mechanic of this build
Hypothermia Support Hypothermia Support - it provides you with much more Damage with Hits against Chilled enemies
Elemental Focus Support Elemental Focus Support - grants very high bonus Elemental Damage to linked Skills, use the Awakened version for an additional Gem Level of Cremation
Greater Multiple Projectiles Support Greater Multiple Projectiles Support - more Projectiles for more Damage
Inspiration Support Inspiration Support - increases your Elemental Damage, Critical Strike Chance, and lowers the Mana Cost
Fire Penetration Support Fire Penetration Support - Damage Penetrates additional Fire Resistance
[MOBILITY] Flame Dash
Flame Dash Flame Dash - recommended Movement Spell for this build. It allows you to travel faster and avoid big attacks
[UTILITY] Flame Wall
Flame Wall Flame Wall - Flame Wall makes Projectile that passes through it deal additional Fire Damage
[UTILITY] Molten Shell
Molten Shell Molten Shell - Guard Spell which mitigates a portion of Hit Damage for a duration
[UTILITY] Punishment
Punishment Punishment - increased damage against enemies that are Low on Life, you should find a way to cast it automatically for convenience
[UTILITY] Spells in "Trigger" Wand
(triggered automatically by your Wand)
Bone Offering Bone Offering - increases your Chance to Block and recovers your Life whenever you Block
Wave of Conviction Wave of Conviction - applies Fire Exposure to enemies affected, reducing their Resistance
Combustion Combustion Support - enemies Ignited by Wave of Conviction have reduced Fire Resistance
[UTILITY] Auras setup
Tempest Shield Tempest Shield - Tempest Shield increases your Spell Block Chance, that's the main reason to use it
Determination Determination - grants increased and additional Armour
Discipline Discipline - grants increased and additional Energy Shield
Enlighten Enlighten Support - increased Mana Reservation Efficiency for linked Skills
[UTILITY] Unearth setup
(Socketed in Gloves with bonus Gem levels)
Unearth Phantasmal Unearth - a Projectile that creates Corpse at its targeted location, you should definitely use the Phantasmal version for more Maximum Life of the corpses - it then scales really well with Quality and Gem Level
Empower Support Empower Support - increased Level of Unearth for higher Corpse Level
Enhance Enhance Support - increased Quality for more corpses' Maximum Life
Greater Volley Greater Volley Support - additional Projectiles to spawn more corpses
[UTILITY] Auras setup
Purity of Elements Purity of Elements - grants you immunity to all Elemental Ailments and a lot of Elemental Resistance
Defiance Banner Defiance Banner - use for increased Armour and Evasion Rating, it also decreases Crit. Chance for nearby enemies
Enlighten Enlighten Support

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5. Gear Setup

Below you will find the required and recommended equipment for our Phantasmal Unearth/Cremation Necromancer build. This build requires a number of specific Unique Items that include Ashes of the Stars, Aegis Aurora and a pair of Crafted Gloves (or at least properly modded Hands of the High Templar). All around, making this build quite expensive depending on the current market prices. While those Items weren't that expensive previously, this setup became exceptionall popular lately, and hence, the prices went up drastically. 

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Stat priorities on items:

  1. Maximum Energy Shield
  2. Elemental Resistances
  3. Level of Dexterity/Spell Skill Gems
  4. Block Chance
  5. Fire/Elemental Damage
  6. Attributes
  7. Corpses' Maximum Life
Rare Helmet(Helmet) Rare Helmet - just aim for the highest ES/Resistances. You could also get a piece that reduces the Fire Resistance of nearby enemies, however, we will still recommend Crown of the Inward Eye as the BiS item for this slot
Min. requirements:
200 Energy Shield
+60% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Nearby enemies have -#% Fire Resistance
Life Regeneration
Crown of the Inward Eye(Helmet) Crown of the Inward Eye - the BiS Helmet for this build. It grants very high bonus damage and a very high bonus to Energy Shield and Armour
333% increased Armour and Energy Shield
(9-21)% increased maximum Life, Mana and Global Energy Shield
Transfiguration of Soul
Transfiguration of Body
Transfiguration of Mind
Helmet enchantments:
Cremation can have up to 1 additional Geyser at a time
Unearth Spawns corpses with +5 Level
Rare Wand(Weapon) Rare Wand - you can get a lot of Damage from a Rare Wand and that's what you should primarily look for here. Also, it needs to have (or you should be able to craft it) the "Trigger Socketed Spell when you use a Skill" affix
Min. requirements:
90% increased Fire/Spell Damage
Trigger Socketed Spell when you use a Skill
Optional affixes:
increased Cast Speed
Chance to deal Double Damage
+1 to Level of all Spell Skill Gems
+1 to Level of all Fire Spell Skill Gems
Added Fire Damage to Spells
Aegis Aurora(Shield) Aegis Aurora - With around 40k Armour (which you should have) it is capable of instantly replenishing 800 Energy Shield on Block. It's overall the best Shield due to this and some other factors, like increased Maximum Cold Resistance
(300-400)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
+10% to all Elemental Resistances
+5% to maximum Cold Resistance
+6% Chance to Block
Replenishes Energy Shield by 2% of Armour when you Block
(10-20)% increased Elemental Damage with Attack Skills
Incandescent Heart(Body Armour) Incandescent Heart - it's a lot of ES, Armour, some extra Chaos Damage, and, the most important of all, you take 25% reduced Damage from Hits due to Chaos Inoculation
(220-240)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
+(80-90) to maximum Life
(0.8-1)% of Attack Damage Leeched as Life
Gain (10-20)% of Elemental Damage as Extra Chaos Damage
25% of Elemental Damage from Hits taken as Chaos Damage
(20-30)% increased Light Radius
Light Radius is based on Energy Shield instead of Life
Gloves(Gloves) Rare Gloves - the best possible Gloves should have simply a TON of added Gem levels to your Unearth and its Support Gems. This can get pretty expensive, most likely any of the below options will be cheaper
Min. requirements:
+1 to level of Socketed Strength Gems
+1 to level of Socketed Dexterity Gems
+2 to level of Socketed Projectile Gems
+1 to level of Socketed AoE Gems (crafted)
Optional affixes:
Maximum Life
Elemental Resistances
Wyrmsign(Gloves) Wyrmsign - it's where you should socket your Unearth, but it's only worth considering when combined with The Red Nightmare. It's such a cheap item that you should seek a corrupted version with local mods for increased Gem Levels
Socketed Gems are Supported by Level 5 Concentrated Effect
(120-160)% increased Armour and Evasion
+(50-70) to maximum Life
4% reduced Mana Cost per Endurance Charge
Gain Rampage while at Maximum Endurance Charges
Lose all Endurance Charges when Rampage ends
Hands of the High Templar(Gloves) Hands of the High Templar - a good pair of these Gloves can be unmatched - look for the local Gem Level modifiers so that your Unearth can grow even stronger
Can be modified while Corrupted
Can have up to 5 Implicit Modifiers while Item has this Modifier
(150-200)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
(7-12)% increased maximum Life
+(20-30)% to Fire and Lightning Resistances
Rare Boots(Boots) Rare Boots - again; Energy Shield and Resistances. You also want at least 25% bonus Movement Speed here
Min. requirements:
100 Energy Shield
25% increased Movement Speed
+50% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Chaos Resistance
chance to gain Onslaught for 4 seconds on Kill
Stygian Vise(Belt) Rare Belt - Preferably a Stygian Vise or Crystal Belt. Seek ES, Resistances, and Armour - there are very few useful mods here
Min. requirements:
100 Energy Shield
+70% to Elemental Resistances
60 Strength
Optional affixes:
Maximum Energy Shield
increased Damage
Ashes of the Stars(Amulet) Ashes of the Stars - It is the best amulet, and it only grows stronger after you're able to afford the Unearth and Cremation with Phantasmal Gem Quality
+(10-16) to all Attributes
(5-10)% increased Experience Gain of Gems
(10-20)% increased Reservation Efficiency of Skills
+1 to Level of all Skill Gems
+(20-30)% to Quality of all Skill Gems
Recommended Anointments:
Mind Drinker
Ash, Frost and Storm
Rare Ring(Ring) Rare Rings - just aim for high Energy Shield and Resistances. You can also get some extra Attributes (Dexterity mainly) to get all the required stats for your Items and Gems
Min. requirements:
Non-Channelling Skills have -6 to Total Mana Cost
+60% to Elemental Resistances
Optional affixes:
Energy Shield
The Red Nightmare(Jewels) The Red Nightmare - socketed it between Overcharge and Endurance for increased Block Chance, and a source of Endurance Charges
Gain 5% of Fire Damage as Extra Chaos Damage
Passives granting Fire Resistance or all Elemental Resistances in Radius
also grant Chance to Block Attack Damage at 35% of its value
Passives granting Fire Resistance or all Elemental Resistances in Radius
also grant an equal chance to gain an Endurance Charge on Kill
Cobalt Jewel(Jewels) Rare Jewels - simply get extra ES, Attributes, Resistances, and DPS bonuses
Recommended affixes:
increased Maximum Energy Shield
increased Spell Damage/Fire Damage
Elemental Resistances
Watcher's Eye(Jewels) Watcher's Eye - it's highly optional - you can get additional Block Chance while under the effect of Determination, or ES on Hit
(4-6)% increased maximum Energy Shield
(4-6)% increased maximum Life
(4-6)% increased maximum Mana
<Two or Three random aura modifiers>
Large Cluster Jewel(Jewels) Large Cluster Jewel - the default Elemental Damage Notables are almost all great choices, allocate one Jewel for extra stats and for additional sockets
Recommended affixes:
1 Added Passive Skill is Sadist
1 Added Passive Skill is Prismatic Heart
1 Added Passive Skill is Doryani's Lesson
1 Added Passive Skill is Disorienting Display

Dying Sun(Flask) Dying Sun - increases the number of your Cremation and Unearth projectiles, making it one of the best Utility Flasks for this build

+50% to Fire Resistance
20% less Fire Damage taken
(-10-10)% increased Charges used
Skills fire 2 additional Projectiles during Flask Effect
(15-25)% increased Area of Effect during Flask Effect
Bottled Faith(Flask) Bottled Faith - one of the best Flasks overall, this build is no exception. This build doesn't really utilize Crits, but the damage multiplier to enemies affected by your Consecrated Ground is substantial
40% increased Damage
Creates Consecrated Ground on Use
(30-15)% reduced 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
Suggested Rare Flasks:
  1. Quartz Flask of Staunching for Bleed removal
  2. Quicksilver Flask with random ailment removal
  3. Granite Flask with random ailment removal
Dying Sunbottled faithQuartz FlaskQuicksilver FlaskGranite Flask

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