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The Baron Zombie Necromancer Build

The Baron Zombie Necromancer Build

A Strength-stacking Necromancer Build that's able to summon a lot of Zombies with greatly increased damage

The Baron
Necromancer Build

Updated for Patch 3.17

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Guide notes
March 09, 2022
-Build created
Build overview
Tags: [MINION] [PHYSICAL] [LIFE]

Budget: 

Defenses: 

Boss DPS:

AoE:

 

The Baron is a Unique Helmet that's a core element of this build, it allows you to summon more Zombies the more Strength you have - one extra Zombie per 500 Strength. If you manage to accumulate 1000 Strength, your Zombies' Damage will be Leeched back to you. That's the minimum Strength to run this build, you can then go for 1500 or even 2000 Strength for extra Zombies, but it's usually not as important as it seems. You should, however, make some space for other various utilities such as Aspect of the Spider, Aspect of the Avian, or you could equip Aegis Aurora and make it a Hybrid build as it's very flexible, the only requirement is to have 1000 Strength and to use Zombies as your main source of damage, other than that it's a regular Minion Build that can be shaped accordingly to your preferences.

Due to the Nature of Strength-stacking, using your Minion to shield you from damage and to Leech Life back to you, and requiring little to no specific affixes on your gear, the build is one of the most defensive-oriented ones. You can easily reach 8k of Maximum Life with defensive layers such as Block Chance, Armour, Immunity to various Ailments, Bone Barrier, and Offerings that can affect your character. The damage is very high, you can also supplement it by using another 6-link (if you're not using a Wand/Shield) where you can put Summon Skeletons or Spectres. It's a build recommended for Necromancer fans that seek a very hard-to-kill character, one able to survive a Shaper's Slam. As for the price - it varies from being extremely expensive to a 10c makeshift build, it depends on your budget.

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1. Gameplay

You're going to use several types of Minions - these are Zombies, Spectres, Animated Guardian, and Carrion Golem. You can equip your Animated Guardian with various Unique Items to enhance your other Minions' performance, Spectres offer a huge variety of buffs as well. Carrion Golem will increase the Physical Damage of your other Minions. For a Guard Spell use Bone Armour from your Ascendancy Skill Tree. A Movement Spell of your choice can be a default Flame Dash, Dash, or a Frostblink. The Auras that should affect your Minions are Dread banner and Pride, the Auras which are good for your Character are Determination and Purity of Elements. There is also Aspect of the Avian or the Spider to choose from, both are really useful. For a Curse use Vulnerability, it increases the Physical Damage affected enemies receive. It's also useful to have Convocation to recall Minions back to your location. Another set of Skills that's good to have is Flesh Offering with Desecrate, preferably cast automatically every 8 seconds via crafted weapon affix.

Full gameplay video:


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2. Build's PROS & CONS

PROS
  • Minion-type gameplay
  • can be assembled in a lot of ways
  • has a massive health pool thanks to Strenght
  • it's one of the safest builds due to the defensives and Minions
  • can run any type of Maps
CONS
  • Minion builds and Strength-stacking can be costly for the high-end upgrades

 

3. Leveling tips

Skeletons are excellent for leveling almost any Minion build, you can spawn them anywhere and they don't deal any specific type of damage, nor do they require any specific Items or setups. Pick the usual Minion and Life nodes on your Skill Tree, and at level 26 you can consider equipping The Baron. It will increase the level of Minion Gems socketed inside of it and grant them more life, but before accumulating 500 or even 1000 Strength, it's not really that good. All the Strenght nodes are on the opposite side of your starting location on the Skill Tree, so it might take a while until you will reach this threshold. Zombies can be used as your main DPS skill too, they are pretty similar to Skeletons - use them as soon as they're durable enough to survive boss fights.

Suggested leveling Gem setups:

Summon Skeletons setup
Summon Skeletons Summon Skeletons - Skeletons or Zombies can be used for leveling, switch to Zombies after equipping The Baron with at least 500 Strength
Minion Life Support Minion Life Support - the Minion Skill linked to it have more Maximum Life
Maim Support Maim Support - Minions will Maim on Hit and deal increased Physical Damage
Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support - Minions will deal more damage
various Gems
Flesh Offering Flesh Offering - it makes your Minions Attack, Move, and Cast faster 
Flame Dash Flame Dash - Use it as your mobility Skill, to move faster
Summon Carrion Golem Summon Carrion Golem - this Golem will make your other Minions deal more Physical Damage
Pride Pride - increases the Physical Damage nearby enemies are receiving

Bandits:

Kill all three Bandits for two additional Skill Points

Leveling Skill Trees:

24 Points Skill Tree
Take Lord of The Dead, Cruel Preparation, and Death Attunement

65 Points Skill Tree
get more Maximum Life, Minion Damage, and Mana Reservation Efficiency

 

Recommended leveling items:

SidhebreathSidhebreath - one of the best early game Amulets for Minion builds
(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
SkullheadSkullhead - Use this Helmet to have durable Minions and Elemental Resistances
(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
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:

110 Points Final Skill Tree (doesn't include Cluster or Unique Jewels)
120 Points Path of Building (PoB) link

Ascendancy points:

Preferably in that order:

  1. Mindless Aggression
  2. Bone Barrier
  3. Commander of Darkness
  4. Unnatural Strenght

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%

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

 

5. Final Gems links

[DPS] Raise Zombie setup
Raise Zombie Raise Zombie - it's as Simple Minion Skill as you can get, you spawn them from a corpse, they use a default Attack as well as Slam to deal Physical Attack Damage
Minion Damage Support Minion Damage Support - Minions deal more Damage but have less Maximum Life
Empower Support Empower Support - increases the Level of Raise Zombie Skill Gem
Brutality Support Brutality Support - Zombies are able to deal only Physical Damage, but it's greatly increased
Melee Physical Damage Support Melee Physical Damage Support - Melee Physical Damage is increased, but the Attack Speed reduced
Multistrike Support Multistrike Support - Attacks are repeated additional times with increased Attack Speed
[UTILITY] Minions setup
Animate Guardian Animate Guardian - Animate Guardian can be equipped with various Unique Items to enhance your other Minions
Feeding Frenzy Feeding Frenzy Support - linked Minions are Aggressive, and have increased Attack, Cast, and Movement Speed
Raise Spectre Raise Spectre - you can use various Spectres for many useful Buffs, it can be spawned from a corpse of the Minion you want to summon as your own
Minion Life Support Minion Life Support - Linked Minions have more and increased Maximum Life
[UTILITY] Minion's Auras setup
Dread Banner Dread Banner - It grants increased Impale Effect and Chance to Impale while reducing the Accuracy Rating of nearby enemies
Pride Pride - enemies affected by Pride receive more Physical Damage, it grows stronger after four seconds of being constantly exposed to it
Generosity Support Generosity Support - Auras won't affect you but your Minions only, the effect of Auras is increased
Enlighten Support Enlighten Support - increased Mana Reservation Efficiency for Linked Auras
[UTILITY] Auras setup
Determination Determination - your Character has additional and increased Armour
Purity of Elements Purity of Elements - grants you a lot of Elemental Resistances and Immunity to all Elemental Ailments
Enlighten Support Enlighten Support
[UTILITY] Flesh offering and Desecrate
socketed in "trigger every 8 seconds" weapon
Flesh Offering Flesh Offering - increased Attack, Cast, and Movement Speed for your Minions
Desecrate Desecrate - spawns 5 Corpses that can be consumed for Flesh Offering for when there are no Corpses nearby
Lifetap Support Lifetap Support - linked Skills cost Life instead of Mana
[UTILITY] Carrion Golem
Summon Carrion Golem Summon Carrion Golem - Carrion Golem adds Physical Damage to Minions' Attacks, it increases their Damage and Maximum Life
[UTILITY] Convocation
Convocation Convocation - your Minions are teleported back to you and have their Life Regeneration increased for a while
[UTILITY] Vulnerability
Vulnerability Vulnerability - a Curse that would make the enemies take more Physical Damage
[MOBILITY] Flame Dash
Flame Dash Flame Dash - use it as a basic Mobility Skill


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6. Gear Setup

When using The Baron your primary objective is to get 1000 Strenght, and if you want to get more you can go for 1500 or 2000. Just be aware that you get one extra Zombie per 500 Strength. Your weapon and Amulet can be used to increase the Gem Level of Raise Zombie, that is the best way to increase your DPS. Speaking of a weapon, you should craft the mod that would allow you to cast linked Spells Every 8 seconds there. Other than that, the build leaves you with a lot of room to experiment and shape it according to your needs. You can for example use a Bow which increases the level of socketed Gems by 3, but the Wand and Shield setup is more defensive-oriented. If you're able to - try to craft the affixes that increase Minion's Damage. Attributes should not be any problem, same with Elemental Resistances, you can seek more Armour, Chaos Resistance, and Life Regeneration if you want to be sure that nothing will slay your character.

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. Strength
  2. Maximum Life
  3. Elemental Resistances
  4. Raise Zombie Gem Level
  5. Minion Damage
  6. Armour
  7. Mana Cost of Skills
  8. Chaos Resistance
The Baron(Helmet) The Baron - The Baron is the core element of the build, it synergizes with your Zombies and Strength in a very unique way
+2 to Level of Socketed Minion Gems
Minions have (10-20)% increased maximum Life
Half of your Strength is added to your Minions
+1 to maximum number of Raised Zombies per 500 Strength
With at least 1000 Strength, (1.5-2)% of Damage dealt by your Raised Zombies is Leeched to you as Life
Helmet enchantments:
Raise Zombie enchantments
Sceptre(Weapon) Rare Sceptre or Wand - it should increase the Level of Raise Zombie Skill Gem, increase Minion Damage, and automatically Trigger socketed Spells
Min. requirements:
+1 to Level of all Spell Skill Gems
Minions deal 50% increased Damage (crafted)
Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Use a Skill, with a 8 second Cooldown (crafted)
Optional affixes:
Minions have 15% increased Attack Speed
Minions have 15% increased Cast Speed
+1 to Level of all Minion Skill Gems
Trigger a Socketed Spell when you Use a Skill, with a 4 second Cooldown
Rare Shield(Shield) Rare Shield - used for more Block Chance, Strength, Life, Resistances, and Mana Reservation Efficiency
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
+50% to Elemental Resistances
+50 to Strength
Optional affixes:
Armour
Socketed Gems have 30% increased Reservation Efficiency
Bow(Weapon) Rare two-handed weapon or a Bow - Two-handed weapons and Bows offer different kinds of mods, you can use them to make your main Zombies setup much stronger via the local Skill Gem Level modifiers, also the Minion Damage mods are more potent. These mods are, however, still hard to get.
Min. requirements:
+1 to Level of Socketed Gems
+2 to Level of Socketed Support Gems
Minions deal 100% increased Damage
Optional affixes:
Minions have increased Attack Speed
Minions have chance to deal Double Damage
Body Armour(Body Armour) Rare Body Armour - here you can find a rare Warlord's or Elder's Suffix that would increase your Strength by up to 12%, otherwise, it's great for Maximum Life, additional Strength, and Resistances
Min. requirements:
+50% to Elemental Resistances
+50 to Strength
+100 to maximum Life
Optional affixes:
10% increased Strength
increased maximum Life
+1 to Level of Socketed Active Skill Gems
Saqawal's Nest(Body Armour) Saqawal's Nest - It's a Unique Body Armour that enhances your Aspect of the Avian Skill, grants you a lot of Attributes, and Mana Reservation Efficiency
+(25-75) to all Attributes
+(30-40)% to Lightning Resistance
(20-12)% increased Mana Reservation Efficiency of Skills
100% increased Aspect of the Avian Buff Effect
Aspect of the Avian also grants Avian's Might and Avian's Flight to nearby Allies
+(120-150) to Evasion Rating and Energy Shield
Rare Boots(Boots) Rare Boots - try to get a pair with Life, Movement Speed, Strength, and additional Elemental Resistances
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
+50 to Strength
25% increased Movement Speed
Optional affixes:
Armour
Chaos Resistance
Elemental Resistances
Alberon's Warpath(Boots) Alberon's Warpath - these Boots grant you increased Strengths by up to 18%, making it one of the best Items for this build
Adds 1 to 80 Chaos Damage to Attacks
+(180-220) to Armour
+(9-12)% to Chaos Resistance
20% increased Movement Speed
+1 to maximum number of Skeletons
(15-18)% increased Strength
Gloves(Gloves) Rare Gloves - besides the regular defensive stats it's also a good opportunity to get some extra Dexterity, it's going to be needed for Desecrate
Min. requirements:
+50 to Maximum Life
+60% to Elemental Resistances
Minions deal 20% increased Damage (crafted)
+50 to Strength
Optional affixes:
Armour
Dexterity
Chaos Resistance
Stygian Vise(Belt) Rare Belt - Synthesised Implicits have a chance to increase your Strength by up to 18%, you really want to have such a belt
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
+60 to Strength
18% increased Strength (synthesized Implicit)
Optional affixes:
increased maximum Life
Minions have #% increased maximum Life
Elemental Resistances
Ashes of the Stars(Amulet) Ashes of the Stars - it's good enough, the Level, Quality, and Mana Efficiency mods are all useful, but it grants you little to no Strength
+(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
Amulet(Amulet) Rare Amulet - Elder's Prefix can extend your Zombies limit by one,  you can also get the regular +1 to all Skill Gems, and obviously more Strength and Life
Min. requirements:
+60 to Maximum Life
+50 to Strength
+1 to maximum number of Raised Zombies
Optional affixes:
Dexterity
+1 to Level of all Skill Gems
Minions deal increased Damage
Recommended Anointments:
Charisma
Enduring Bond
Ring(Ring) Rare Ring - As was the case with the Belt, you can also get a synthesized Implicit for increased Strength, by up to 7%. Get some more Strength, Maximum Life, and increased Minion Damage mods
Min. requirements:
+70 to Maximum Life
7% increased Strength (synthesized Implicit)
+50 to Strength
Optional affixes:
Elemental Resistances
Non-Channelling Skills have -(7-6) to Total Mana Cost (crafted)
Chaos Resistance
Minions deal 30% increased Damage
Dexterity
Cobalt Jewel(Jewel) Rare Jewels - these should grant you extra Maximum Life, Elemental Resistances, Minon Damage, and Attributes
Min. requirements:
7% increased Maximum Life
Minions deal 15% increased Damage
Elemental Resistances
Attributes
Brawn(Jewel) Brawn - you can use these to increase your Strength and Dexterity
(4-6)% increased Dexterity
(4-6)% increased Strength
(15-10)% reduced Intelligence
Fortress Covenant(Jewel) Fortress Covenant - A must-have Jewel. Socket it in near Unwavering Stance, it won't affect any Notables there
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
Watcher's Eye(Jewel) Watcher's Eye - Determination or Purity of Elements mods can be very useful, especially the additional Chaos Resistance
(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(Jewel) Large Cluster Jewel - Rotten Claws and Vicious Bite are one of the best offensive Notables, Feasting Fiends and Renewal are good for making your Minions more durable
Recommended affixes:
1 Added Passive Skill is Feasting Fiends
1 Added Passive Skill is Renewal
1 Added Passive Skill is Vicious Bite
1 Added Passive Skill is Rotten Claws
Split Personality(Jewel) Split Personality - you can allocate two of these, each granting you Strength and Maximum Life at the end of the Cluster Jewel near Resolute Technique for extra stats
This Jewel's Socket has 25% increased effect per Allocated Passive Skill between
it and your Class' starting location
<Two random modifiers>
Thread of Hope(Jewel) Thread of Hope - allocate it near Instability, this way you will be able to get Heart and Soul, Indomitable Army, and Ravenous Horde
Only affects Passives in Very Large Ring
Passives in Radius can be Allocated without being connected to your tree
-(20-10)% to all Elemental Resistances
 Rumi's Concoction(Flask) Rumi's Concoction - this Flask grants Armour and Block Chance
+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 - it increases your DPS and Life Regeneration by creating Consecrated Ground
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

Other suggested Flasks:

  1. Quicksilver Flask with Bleeding immunity/removal
  2. Life Flask with random ailment removal
  3. Basalt Flask with random ailment removal
Rumi's ConcoctionLife FlaskBottled Faithquicksilver 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.