{3.8} Skelemancer & Friends //PURE PHYS SKELETONS //TANKY AF //HUGE DAMAGE

Hey gamers, welcome to my self made build, which is also my first forum guide worthy build, because i just love this build soooo much, and ran it as my league starter for 3.8, and i am still playing it. I decided to make a build guide for it, because this build feels very well rounded, and minion will prob get a nerf (i dont think major, but a nerf) in the next patch. I doubt anyone will even see this, but if you do, consider running it, as i am quite proud of how it turned out.

Sorry in advance for possible spelling errors, grammar errors, and inconsistent formating
Also there is a lot of text on here, you don’t have to read it all, but it explains most everything

Now then, into the build.


-3 mil shaper dps on a tabula budget
-7+ mil dps easily with actual gear
-20% damage mitigation, plus fortify
-6k+ life
-78 all res
-positive chaos res is easy
-decent block
-good clear
-10% regen
-Two taunting spectres
-Bone Barrier
-Vaal Summon Skeltons is a fun button


-Minions arent for everyone, and neither is their AI
-A bit button pressy for full dps
-socket starved
-only melee minions
-some mana issues until you get higher levels(not major)

This is a pure phys necromancer focusing on skeletons as its single target, with zombies and carrion golems as clear(more on that later).

As mentioned before, we are pretty tanky with a lot of mitigation, as well as 65%+ phys dmg reduction with flasks. Obviously, that isnt up on bosses all the time, but we should phase them into more adds pretty quickly.

However, the biggest downside is that there is a bit of ramp to our dps, as we need to summon skeletons, then desecrate, then flesh offering, then curse, then deathmark, then continue to reapply flesh offering. This can be annoying at times, but we dont need all of that up really, we have enough dps. It’s also not a big ramp, but you gotta press buttons. This isn’t a problem at all against bosses that let you set up a bit

In my opinion, the clear is also reallllllllly fun to watch, and feels good. I havent delved too much, and this might not be the best delver bc no projectiles, but i think it should still be pretty good at that

I haven’t run shaper a bunch, but the times that I have it was incredibly easy. We have a ton of dps, and in my experience he was only able to do one round of attacks before he was phased. Also, you can just run around and do whatever you want while your deathmarked skeletons off screen him. The unshaped I didn’t bother with interacting with them, I just threw some skeletons every now and then and that was it. This was also true on the guardians, but on Minotaur this was a bit scary as I didn’t know where he was. This was still fine though, as even without fortify and bone barrier up I survive his slams with ~1.5k life left.



Summon Skeletons(vaal)
Melee Physical
Minion Damage


Raise Zombie
Feeding Frenzy
Minion Damage / empower when you get it

later you will use this setup in a minion dmg psuedo 5L helm

Shield Charge

Shield Charge
Faster Attacks


Raise Spectre
blood magic

we use ape chieftains and ape host, one of each, for perma power and frenzy charges
we also use two hairy bone cruncher because they taunt with enduring cry
blood magic lets them use their abilities more
all three of these can be found in act 7 ashen fields

Carrion Golem

Carrion Golem
Feeding Frenzy
Minion Damage

Everything else is a single gem (not linked), so ill just list them here:

Stone Golem
Flesh Offering

Optional Animate Gaurdian

Animate gaurdian helps a lot, or at least is a necessary step in min max, but to be honest its unneeded, especially since it needs another unset ring. The links i use for him is:

Animate Guardian
Minion Life
Raise Spectre
blood magic

This gives the spectres more life too, which is pretty good. The items i use for him are basic, king maker, victario's flight, leer cast, southbound, and Zahndethus' Cassock. The main reason is king maker of course
Make sure to get rid of fortify in shield charge links, as thats how we are able to get the sockets free


For the pob, you can either import my character, by entering in my name and scrolling to ZeroFPSLeague, or you can use this link, but keep in mind it might be outdated to what i am currently doing. Also, this pob includes leveling trees, as how i did it.
Keep in mind, you shouldnt go for all those jewel sockets until you have the golem jewels


Kill all


Necromancer obv
1st. Mindless Aggression
2nd. Unnatural Strength
3rd. Bone Barrier
4th. PlagueBringer


Major: brine king or lunaris
Minor: gruest(ralakesh I think?) or shakiri

Map mods:

Phys reflect is very annoying and I wouldn’t recommend, but it is still very doable. No regen is fine, but I would personally just reroll that. Everything else is fine



For starting out, Skull head is usefull, however any helm with some levels to minon gems as well as life and res is probably better.
For endgame, look for helms with the elder mod Supported by minion dmg,as well as + to level of socketed skill gems, life res
Bone helm is obv the best, but that'll be pricey
For enchant, get flesh offering attack speed

Body armour:

A tabula or any six link is completely fine, and also not needed for leveling!! i leveled with my skeletons on a 3L for the majority of leveling, a 4L for the last two acts, and then a 6L when i got to maps.
After that, there are two choices, and i favor the second.
First, a skin of the loyal. its good. whatever.
But i would much rather have just a 6L with life res until a maim chest or a chest with some way of increasing the skeleton's level inside. Getting both of these would obviously be really good. Also, if you use a rare chest you can craft +1 zombie +1 skeleton


I used a white weapon for the entirety of story, and up until maybe level 75, at which point i used a magic weapon with crafted increased minion damage.it isnt very complicated. Past that, use a convoking wand with good minion damage and minion attack speed. these are pretty easy to self craft
Past that, a convoking wand with + level of minion gems, as well as other good minion stats


Any rare with life+res is completely fine, but ahn's heritage is probbably the best for tankiness. Its a pretty good sheild, also cheap


Stygian vise with life res


Any rare with life + res is fine, i recommend also managing your dex problems with this slot.
Later, when you have more money to balance your res, i recomened a "The Jinxed Juju", an amulet i didnt know existed before this character. It sadly doesnt have any life, but it has good chaos res as well as curse and non curse aura effect. But the main reason is the basically free 10% less damage taken from hits. if you're scared of your spectres dying, which i dont think you should be, then throw a minion life in that setup, although this will require i think two unset rings.

For anointment slot, there are 3 main ones:
Golem’s Blood (center of duelist)
Indomitable Army (top left of scion)
Ravenous Horde (top right of witch)
These are all very good choices, and it’s really up to you


You're gonna need at least 1 unset ring, but basically just life res

Movement speed life res. For enchant, i would get life regen if you've been hit recently, or movement speed if you havent. doesnt matter too much tho.


Life res. For enchant, i would probably get (i think its called spite?) the one where it shoots out some proj that chill.

Also, depending on gem slots, and dont include this in just a normal way to make this character, but using Tombfists or the minion version (it hardly matters which one, as we dont need the accuracy, but ig minion version is better), and if you have the gem slots, which would (i think ) require 1 unset if 1 socketed, and 2 unset if two socketed, as well as straying from golems, then you could get 1 or two more jewel sockets. Im not sure that this is worth it though, as res would be very hard to balance, and you would lose (porbably) some life, only to gain damage that we dont really need.


3 Primordial Harmony, 1 Anima stone
if you have more than 4 jewel sockets, or arent using golems as heavily as i theorized in the "what to improve" section, use Abyssal jewels with life, added phys to minion, minion attack speed, and minion damage if youve used a minion skill recently. No, it does not have to be a four stat. If you arent using abyss jewels, as im not sure whether its better or worse than regualar jewels, just get some with increased minion damage life and whatever else you want, but i think abyssal jewels are better

My gear:

Note that this is in no way perfect gear, but its decent, and something to think about when making this char.

Leveling & Progression

I leveled with fire ball and zombies until i got srs, which i then used srs and zombies, and after that i used skeletons and srs and zombies, and then i used skeletons and sombies and flesh offering, and thus became the classic summoner playstyle. It was really smooth and really fun, and i carried myself throught all of the labs with ease, as well as my friend. There isnt really much to say pre map
But once you get to maps or close to, your clear starts to suffer a bit.If you feel that it is, go for the +1 golem node and use two carrion golems. Once you have your 6L and res capped,, go for the golem jewels and jewel sockets. This part of the build is kind of clunky, but it went pretty quick and was still very playable. The only stat we care about on Primordial harmonies is the golem skill cooldown.
Once you have that, upgrade your gear so you have more life, and then start looking for a decent wand. After you have a decent wand, look for a good helm, and after that, well just keep improving your gear and the like. Remeber to get level 21 gems, those are very important. Its better to have a 21/0 than a 20/20 if you do not have the money to buy a 21/20, which for the most part i dont.

What to improve:

This is not a complete character. I am still getting currency and the like to take this as far is it can. But here are some of my ideas of what to do next

Obviously, we have a lot of mana un-reserved. However, we have kinda high mana costs, so i think its fine to keep it like that until we are a higher level and have more mana to spend, as well as more mana regen. We dont really have any more gem sockets, so i think the best thing would be aspect of the spider. Skitterbots is prob better, but it takes up more mana as well as a gem slot, so i dont think its worth it.
My helm as well as wand arent finsihed. For wand i want something with minion gems, 70 ish minion dmg, 18+ minion attack speed, i think that would be better than waht i have rn. The Helm is a bit trickier, as really i want 4 prefixes, but i can only have 3 obviously. I want Life, +3 minion gems, lvl 20 minion dmg, and the craft +1 zombies +1 skeletons, but i think the best option is to forgo the craft. Also, a maim chest, or a shaped +1 active skill gems, or a fossil crafted +1 int gems body armour would give us a lot more dps. As well as that, crafting the +1 zombie +1 skele on the chest would also be good. I am just too lazy.
See also the gearing section, i mention some things.
There is also the obvious currutping gems for more quality or levels, and other basic min maxing stuff.

That is all small stuff, the next part i want to improve is changing the core of the build. Not the core, but the clear. I want to drop the golem jewels in favour of jewels that give me more minion damage, but i am worried my claer will suffer because of this. I have pobed this, and i think my clear will be completely fine if i get a good helm (ideally +3 and minion dmg) as well as empower four. Btw, the plan is to rely on zombies for clear. Skeletons will still be able to help, but i dont see them doing toooooo much without melee splash, and i dont want to gem swap.

Update: I tried this, and although I was missing 3 gem levels on the zombies from perfection, I don’t think it would be worth it. You would gain 300 or 400 life, and a considerable amount of damage, but the clear simply doesn’t feel good without investing into carrion golems. The damage was fine, the zombies themselves were easily enough damage to insta phase the map boss, but they didn’t slam enough for my liking.
However, while trying that, I was also running a animate guardian, which I think will incorporate into the build.


Red Elder https://youtu.be/ueRoIdXEx64
This will grow more as time goes on

That is probably about it, I hope you will follow and have fun with build, or maybe get inspired by it. if you do either, id love it if you commented, as i think that bumps it up in popularity so that more people can see this build.

If you want to see what i am currently doing, you can import my char ZeroFPSLeague into pob by entering my account, or you can go to my chars on this website.
Last edited by bluedood444 on Oct 8, 2019, 7:35:47 PM
Last bumped on Sep 22, 2019, 9:09:15 PM

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