Dr. Bones 2.0 Necromancer BUILD for Diablo IV [RDY-4-Launch]
Diablo IV launches on June 6th, 2023 for PC (Battle.Net), XBOX, & PlayStation with a 4 days Early Access (no wipe) for pre-orders (so kind of really launching June 2nd).
Diablo IV‘s Launch is almost upon us and it’s time for some Ready-For-Launch full Builds/Theorycrafts that should be good for both ‘fresh-into-endgame’ characters as well as late endgame. I also plan to evolve them further when the game is released & keep them updated when we get rebalance updates. This is one such build for the Necromancer Class called Dr. Bones 2.0.
I’ve also made spreadsheets for those builds (see the links below) that have shortlisted the active and passive skills + legendary aspect + unique item + gems & sockets + suggested stat rolls + paragon boards that work well with the build which you can use to tinker. Alternatively, I’ve added build calculator links (mostly needed for the paragons)
This build will be updated post-launch to a new & expanded version when I have more in-game information as reference.
Below you’ll see ONLY the Active & Passive skills that were selected for this build. For additional skills that can be taken + alternative skill options, you can check my RDY-4-Launch Builds spreadsheet on this link. This build (Dr. Bones 2.0) is one of the builds on that spreadsheet.
Basic Skill (Resource Generator/Builder) (Required Points: 0 )
- (active – ONLY put 1 point here) Bone Splinters – Fire 3 bone splinters, dealing 22.5% damage each. Each subsequent time an enemy is hit by the same cast of Bone Splinters, you gain 1 Essence. Each subsequent time an enemy is hit by the same cast of Bone Splinters, you gain 1 Essence. Lucky Hit Chance: 17% Generates: 5 Essence Damage: Physical ; Tags: Basic, Bone
- (1st upgrade) Enhanced Bone Splinters – Bone Splinters has a 30% chance to fire 2 additional projectiles if cast while you have 50 or more essence.
- (2nd upgrade) Initiate’s Bone Splinters – Bone Splinters has a 20% chance per hit to make enemies Vulernable for 2 seconds.
Core Skill(s) (Resource Spender) (Required Points: 2 )
- (active) Bone Spear – Conjure a bone spear from the ground, dealing 85% (X-?) damage and Piercing through enemies. Lucky Hit Chance: 50% Essence Cost: 25 Damage: Physical ; Tags: Core, Bone
- (1st upgrade) Enhanced Bone Spear – Bone Spear breaks into 3 shards when it is destroyed, dealing 10% (X-?) damage each.
- (2nd upgrade – my pick of the 2) Supernatural Bone Spear – Bone Spear makes the first enemy hit Vulnerable for 3 seconds.
- (passive) Hewed Flesh – Lucky Hit: Your damage has up to a 4%/8%/12% chance to create a corpse at the target’s location.
- (passive) DID NOT INVEST in other Core passives to save points
Macabre Skills (Required Points: 6 )
- (active) Corpse Explosion – Detonate a Corpse, dealing 75% (X-XX) damage to nearby enemies. Lucky Hit Chance: 40% Damage: Physical ; Tags: Corpse, Corruption
- (1st upgrade) Enhanced Corpse – Corpse Explosion’s radius is increased by 15%.
- (2nd upgrade – my pick of the 2) Blighted Corpse Explosion – Corpse Explosion becomes a Darkness Skill and, instead of exploding, releases a vile miasma dealing 110% (X-?) Shadow Damage over 6 seconds.
- (active – ONLY put 1 point here) Bone Prison – Unearth a prison of bone with X Life that surrounds the target area for 6 seconds. Cooldown: 20 Seconds. Tags: Macabre, Bone
- (1st upgrade) Enhanced Bone Prison – If an enemy is trapped by Bone Prison, gain 3 Essence, plus an additional 5 per enemy trapped.
- (2nd upgrade – my pick of the 2) Ghastly Bone Prison – Enemies inside of Bone Prison are Vulnerable.
- (passive) Grim Harvest – Consuming a Corpse generates 3/6/9 Essence.
- (upgrade) Fueled by Death – You deal 4%/8%/12% (multiplicative) increased damage for 4 seconds after consuming a Corpse.
- (passive) DID NOT INVEST in other Macabre passives to save points
Corruption Skills (Required Points: 11 ) Not taking an Active skill here
- (1st upgrade)
- (2nd upgrade – my pick of the 2)
- (passive) DID NOT INVEST in any Corruption passives to save points
Summoning Skills (Required Points: 16 )
- (active – ONLY put 2 points here) Bone Spirit – Consume all of your Essence to conjure a spirit of bone that seeks enemies. Upon reaching an enemy, the spirit explodes, dealing 80% (X-?) damage to the target and all surrounding enemies. Damage is increased by 3% (multiplicative) for each point of Essence spent casting Bone Spirit. Lucky Hit Chance: 33% Cooldown: 12.0 Seconds. Essence Cost: All remaining Essence Damage: Physical ; Tags: Macabre, Bone
- (1st upgrade) Enhanced Bone Spirit – If Bone Spirit Critically Strikes, its Cooldown is reduced by 6 seconds. This effect can only happen once per cast.
- (2nd upgrade – my pick of the 2) Dreadful Bone Spirit – After Bone Spirit hits an enemy, you generate 30 Essence over the next 4 seconds.
- (passive) Serration – Your Bone Skills have a +0.5%/+1%/+1.5% increased Critical Strike Chance for each 10 Essence you have upon cast
- (upgrade) Rapid Ossification – Every 100 Essence you spend reduces the cooldowns of your Bone Skills by 0.5/1/1.5 seconds.
- (upgrade) Compound – Fracture After Critically Striking 10 times with Bone Skills, your Bone Skills deal 5%/10%/15% (multiplicative) increased damage for 5 seconds.
- (upgrade) Evulsion – Your Bone Skills deal 6%/12%/18% (multiplicative) increased Critical Strike Damage to Vulnerable enemies.
- (passive) Necrotic Carapace – When a Corpse is formed from your Skills or your Minions, Fortify for 2%/4%/6% Base Life.
- (passive) DID NOT INVEST in other Summoning passives to save points
Ultimate Skills (Required Points: 23 )
- (active) Bone Storm – A swirling storm of bones surrounds you and your Golem, dealing 180% (X-?) to surrounding enemies over 10 seconds. Lucky Hit Chance: 40% Cooldown: 60 Seconds. Damage: Physical ; Tags: Ultimate, Bone
- (1st upgrade) Prime Bone Storm – Your Damage Reduction is increased by 15% while Bone Storm is active.
- (2nd upgrade) Supreme Bone Storm – Your Critical Strike Chance is increased by +20% while Bone Storm is active.
- (passive) Stand Alone – Increases Damage Reduction by 6%/12%/18%,, reduced by 2% for each active Minion.
- (upgrade) Memento Mori – Sacrificing both Skeletal Warriors and Skeletal Mages increases their Sacrifice bonuses by 20%/40%/60%.
- (passive) DID NOT INVEST in any other Ultimate passives to save points
Specializations (Required Points: 33 )
- (passive) Ossified Essence – Your Bone Skills deal 1% (multiplicative) increased damage for each point of Essence you have above 50 upon cast.
Book of the Dead (Class Mechanic):
This build is all about creating as many corpses as possible and getting Fortify for each corpse generated, while consuming them with Corpse Explosion. On top of that we can keep spamming Bone Spear as long as we keep consuming the corpses as that gives us Essence. Since the build has a ton of Vulnerable and Crit related bonuses we’re Sacrificing all minions and take such bonuses for Sacrificing our Minions as well.
I’d advise taking Zero Minions for this build & Sacrifice the Skeletal Warriors, Skeletal Mages, & Golem. The types sacrifices are:
- Skeletal Skirmishers: Sacrifice so that we get extra Crit Chance
- Description: Your critical strike chance is increased by 5%, but you can no longer raise Skeletal Warriors.
- Cold Mages: Sacrifice is amazing to get extra DMG to Vulnerable enemies
- Description: You deal 15% (multiplicative) increased damage to Vulnerable enemies, but you can no longer raise Skeletal Mages.
- Iron Golem: Sacrifice so that we get extra Crit Damage
- Description: You deal 30% (multiplicative) increased critical strike damage, but you lose the ability to summon a Golem.
In Diablo IV apparently (I have multiple sources that confirmed this) we can equip more than one unique item at the same time (not so ‘unique’ if we can get decked out in full uniques I guess). It seems that the one unique per build idea that Unique inherited from the Mythical gear they supposedly replaced was scrapped even before the closed beta tests. My top pick will be the following one but check the notes under the Aspects list for some additional picks:
Deathless Visage (Helm)
Bone Spear leaves behind echoes as it travels that explode, dealing N damage.
+[0.031 – 0.073] Armor
+[0.07 – 0.14] Physical Damage
+[14 – 21]% Critical Strike Damage
+[16 – 24] Maximum Essence
“Rathma is endless. He was the first Ancient, and will remain at the end. He is the master of the Great Cycle of Being. When Death comes for him, why should he fear it?” – Vauntus, Acolyte of Rathma
Sockets & Gems
There are various possible good/viable choices for the gem slots. I’ve shortlisted what works by slot. I’d recommend picking one of those:
Weps: Emerald, Amethyst, Diamond, Saphire, Ruby, or Skull.
Armor: Ruby, Saphire or Skull.
Jewelry: Diamond unless you need specific resistance more than all.
XYZ Diamond (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N% Ultimate Skill Damage
• Armor: +N% Barrier Generation
• Jewelry: N% Resistance to All Elements
+5%/+5%/5 for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
XYZ Skull (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N Life On Kill
• Armor: +N% Healing Received
• Jewelry: +N Armor
+13/+5%/+170 for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
XYZ Amethyst (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N% Damage Over Time
• Armor: N% Damage Taken Over Time Reduction
• Jewelry: N% Shadow Resistance
+5%/+8.2%/+14.3% for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
XYZ Ruby (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N% Overpower Damage
• Armor: +N% Maximum Life
• Jewelry: N% Fire Resistance
+15%/+5.5%/14.3% for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
XYZ Emerald (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N% Critical Strike Damage to Vulnerable Enemies
• Armor: +N Thorns
• Jewelry: N% Poison Resistance
+7.5%/39/14.3% for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
XYZ Saphire (Requires Level XY)
• Weapon: +N% Critical Strike Damage to Crowd-Controlled Enemies
• Armor: N% Damage Reduction While Fortified
• Jewelry: N% Cold Resistance
+7.5%/5%/14.3% for chipped (the 2nd grade at lvl 20)
Legendary Aspects / Powers
I will only list the Legendary Aspects that have been selected for the build and the slots in which I advise putting those. For in-depth information you can check my RDY-4-Launch Builds spreadsheet on this link. This build (Dr. Bones 2.0) is one of the builds on that spreadsheet.
- Helm: Aspect of The Protector / Deathless Visage OR Harlequin Crest (see notes below)
- Amulet: Aspect of Serration
- Chest: Aspect of Shielding Storm / Blood Artisan’s Cuirass (see notes below)
- Pants: Aspect of the Embalmer
- Gloves: Osseous Gale Aspect
- Boots: Exploiter’s Aspect
- Ring 1: Aspect of Ultimate Shadow
- Ring 2: Aspect of Exposed Flesh / Splintering Aspect (see notes below)
- 1H Weapon: Splintering Aspect / Black River (see notes below)
- Off-hand: Aspect of Swelling Curse / Aspect of Shielding Storm (see notes below)
- 2-H Weapon (if you decide to use one): Splintering Aspect (see notes below)
NOTE 1: Aspect of The Protector goes in the Helm slot ONLY until you get the Deathless Visage Unique Helm. There are three other alternative picks for Uniques you could use if you get those first: Blood Artisan's Cuirass (Chest Armor), Harlequin Crest (Helm), & Black River (Scythe) See the notes below for more info: NOTE 2: How to re-arrange if using any of the alternative Uniques: - For Blood Artisan's Cuirass (Chest Armor): Aspect of Swelling Curse gets removed from the Off-hand slot. You also need to remove the offensive Off-hand and replace it with a Shield off-hand. Aspect of Shielding Storm goes in the newly equipped Shield Off-hand to make room for the Unique Chest Armor. - For Harlequin Crest (Helm): Aspect of The Protector gets removed from the Helm slot to make room for the Unique Helm. - For Black River (Scythe): Aspect of Exposed Flesh gets removed from the Ring 2 slot & Splintering Aspect replaces it to make room for the Unique Scythe.
Use the links below to check the paragon boards selected and the nodes I’ve taken. One link is for what the boards will look like at lvl 90 without any paragon points from renown (so more paragon points will be obtained on the way to 100 as well as from renown). The other link will be what the boards will look like when fully maxed out on paragon points.
- LVL 90 & no Points from renown: Click THIS LINK
- MAXed out points (1 spare point left): Click THIS LINK
Suggested Gear Rolls to look out for (NOT in complete order of priority):
I’ve shortlisted 44 different affixes that work well with the build of almost 300 total. I’ll highlight in Orange the ones I think should get higher priority
|Bonus to All Damage|
|Critical Strike Chance / Critical Damage Bonus|
|Critical Chance / Critical Damage with Shadow/Physical/Darkness/Bone Skills|
|Critical Chance / Critical Damage with Core/Macabre/Corpse/Basic/Ultimate Skills|
|Damage with Core/Macabre/Corpse/Corruption/Basic/Ultimate Skills|
|Lucky Hit Chance|
|+ X Ranks to Bone Spear/Corpse Explosion/Bone Storm/Bone Spirit/Bone Prison|
|+ X Ranks to Core/Macabre/Corpse/Corruption/Basic Skills|
|Lucky Hit Chance with Shadow/Physical Damage|
|Shadow/Physical Damage Bonus|
|+ % Critical Chance / Critical Damage with Shadow/Physical Damage|
|Resistance to All Elements|
|+ % Shadow/Physical Damage to Elites|
|+ % Critical Strike Chance with Shadow/Physical Damage Against Elites|
|+ % Damage for X Seconds After Killing an Elite|
|Damage Reduction for X Seconds After Killing an Elite|
|Damage Reduction from Elites|
|Damage / Critical Chance / Critical Damage Against Close Enemies|
|Damage / Critical Chance / Critical Damage Against Crowd Controlled Enemies|
|Damage / Critical Chance / Critical Damage Against Vulnerable Enemies|
|Damage while Fortified|
|Chance When Struck to Fortify for X Life|
|+ % Damage Over Time|
|+ % Shadow Damage Over Time|
|+ % Shadow Damage Over Time Duration|
|Overpower Damage with Bone Spear/Corpse Explosion/Bone Storm/Bone Spirit/Bone Prison|
|Overpower Damage with Core/Bone/Darkness/Macabre/Corpse/Basic/Ultimate Skills|
|Damage to Slowed/Stunned/Immobilized Enemies|
|Critical Strike Chance Against Slowed/Stunned/Immobilized Enemies|
|+ All Stats|
|Damage while Healthy|
|Damage vs Healthy Enemies|
|Damage vs Injured Enemies|
|Weapon Damage (not sure if there are any bonuses to that as rolls)|
|Essence On Kill|
|Resource Cost Reduction|
Useful Links (Spreadsheets & more):
For all of my Diablo IV RDY-4-Launch Theorycrafts/Builds: This Spreadsheet
For my Diablo IV Pre-Launch Class Skill Trees (can be used as mini-calculator): This Spreadsheet
For all of my Diablo IV Pre-Launch Theorycrafts/Builds: This Spreadsheet
♦ ◊ ♦ ◊ ♦
This concludes the Dr. Bones 2.0 Necromancer Build for Diablo IV. If you’re interested in the game below are links to the various platforms where one can buy it (you can just click the links to open a new tab):