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Diablo 3 Necromancer guide: Minion build

An army of bones at your disposal

Ryan Gilliam (he/him) has worked at Polygon for nearly seven years. He primarily spends his time writing guides for massively popular games like Diablo 4 & Destiny 2.

Maximizing your offense and defense is crucial to a late-game build in Diablo 3: The Rise of the Necromancer. When we say late game, we mean pushing higher level Torment difficulties and Greater Rifts. Coming up with your own build is good, but there are almost always one to two optimal builds for any given class. At the time of its release, it appears that the Necromancer has three: the Bone Storm build, the Blood build and the Minion build.

The Minion build has not been very popular on the live servers (it was hit with a significant nerf on the Diablo 3 PTR). However, it does offer a unique experience, allowing you to actively control your minions to deal damage, granting stark contrast to the traditionally passive pet builds for the Witch Doctor class. On Diablo Fans, the community creates builds for all to use and enjoy. User Melancholy cataloged this Minion build. Let’s go through the various selections of items and abilities.

Abilities - runes

  • Bone Spikes - Sudden Impact
  • Skeletal Mage - Singularity
  • Land of the Dead - Frozen Lands
  • Command Skeletons - Freezing Grasp
  • Simulacrum - Reservoir
  • Devour - Cannibalize


  • Final Service
  • Life from Death
  • Overwhelming Essence
  • Extended Servitude

Kanai’s Cube

  • Reilena’s Shadowhook
  • Tasker and Theo
  • Krysbin’s Sentence

Items - slot

  • Rathma’s Skull Helm - helm
  • Rathma’s Spikes - shoulders
  • Rathma’s Ribcage Plate - chest
  • Rathma’s Macabre Vambraces - gloves
  • Rathma’s Skeletal Legplates - legs
  • Rathma’s Ossified Sabatons - boots
  • The Traveler’s Pledge - amulet
  • The Compass Rose - ring one
  • Circle of Nailuj’s Evol - ring two
  • Reaper’s Wraps - wrists
  • The Witching Hour - waist
  • Jesseth Skullscythe - sycthe
  • Jesseth Skullshield - shield

Legendary Gems

  • Enforcer
  • Bane of the Trapped
  • Esoteric Alteration

How to use the Minion build

Use Land of the Dead whenever possible, as it will allow you infinite Essence due to Devour. Target and enemy with Command Skeletons and drop Skeletal Mages everywhere on the map. Pop your Simulacrum before dumping Skeletal Mages to double up on the minions. Tap Devour whenever there are a lot of corpses around you and use Bone Spikes as your filler move.

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