[3.8] Popcorn skeleton Necro/520k Shaper per click/8.3k life

NOTE: This build is written by someone who is not experienced at writing build guides. I am currently unable to record gameplay because I'm dealing with the world's worst ISP and my current speed is standard Australian AKA 0.7 upload.

Pob https://pastebin.com/Kx9A9yzQ

520k shaper damage per right click or 1m with From Dust jewel on clear setup. 1.1m/2.3m with single target.
13.4m shaper damage with vaal skeletons + 2 summons
18.4m with EE
Very tanky, 8.3k life, any amount of defense flasks you want
Extremely flexible with almost every aspect of the build
Triple curse with amulet corruption
HC viable (keep in mind this is coming from someone who doesn't play HC)
All map mods viable
EE available but everything except shaper/guardians/elder will die too quickly for you to use it
8 Jewel sockets

Not cheap (roughly 4ex in gear)
Not an ultra balls to the walls clear build
Has to stop to cast skeletons
Looks like a garbage heap without mtx
Skeletons take a moment to explode

The build is based around Earendel's Embrace and summoning skeletons with tons of life to do tons of damage. The general mapping damage is 276k per skeleton explosion and 96k proliferated burn. The build is not ultra fast but it can do all content with relative ease. Anyone experienced with right clicking and moving to kill bosses will have no problems. The build takes EE but it is completely unnecessary for everything, including uber elder.

Why not use Maligaro's Lens?
Here are the numbers. With Maligaro's Lens and Infernal Legion the skeletons burn for 77% of their life per second because it brings them to -10% fire res. With 2 sceptres they burn for 60%. However with Necromantic Aegis you are wasting a lot of skill points just to get it and you lose block and defense from the shield. With 2 scepters you can use things like Rumi's for 35% attack block and 10% spell block. With the introduction of infernal legion this choice is now a bit more flexible so it's up to you.

Why not cast them faster?

EDIT: This is no longer true with Infernal Legion support, you should be casting faster but once you get to 4 summons at once you will need to pace yourself so they do not time out.

Why not use From Dust?
Mainly because during maps you don't need it and you have more coverage without it since you can cast 2 groups.

Do not put quality on your infernal legion gem. It gives your skeletons reduced fire damage taken which just makes them die slower.

Tankier version
If you would like a tankier version I have been working on that too. Essentially the difference is that you regret a few minion damage points and put them into the 2 endurance charges on the left side of the tree. You can then slot enduring cry and annoint Battle Cry on your amulet. This means your enduring cry has no cast time and will not disrupt your casting. You can also craft Aspect of the Spider onto your gear for some more damage and defense from the huge slow it gives. Arctic Armour is another option if spider is difficult to add to your gear.

POB https://pastebin.com/Kk3yhDUv

This will give you 20% phys reduction but you will lose about 15% damage.

3.8 items

2 of these to make the build work. You technically no longer need these as infernal legion can do it but your degen will be pretty slow without them and that means enemies die slower and have more time to attack you. Swapping one out for a +1 all minion, minion damage stick could be ok for bigger bosses if you feel the need.

Good helmet, can be improved dramatically. The best helmet (and one that will currently double my damage output) is:
Elder Bone helmet ilvl 86
+3 minions
Minion life 20
Minion Damage 20
More elemental (essence of horror)
Immolate (very small damage boost)

However this is obviously extremely difficult to make and you can get something with half these stats very easily and much cheaper (and for that reason it was not used to calculate dps)

Same as ever, big chunk of survivability, can be changed for Blood bond for a little more damage or your body armour of choice.

More life, resists, and minion life/damage where you can get it. The gloves are bad but because this is a minion meta they are slightly harder to come by.

Flasks are flexible. I choose to use an instant recovery, 20% Kiara's because 3 seconds of immunity to curse, stun and freeze is a nice thing to have when you don't need flasks for damage. And standard quicksilver, granite, basalt.

3.6 items

Clearly we need these

Big bang helmet. This is the best way to increase your damage. The more levels you have the more damage potential you have. This cost me 3.5ex a week into the league. A decent replacement for this is a 6L Bloodbond but honestly that's about the same price and you don't get to use a Kaom's heart.

More life is always good. Run into a few situations that would have been lethal without this. As mentioned above you can use a 6L bloodbond but it will end up being the same price as the helmet and then you lose the Kaom's slot.

Gear for more life, resistances and as much minion life as you can get.

This is just for the extra curse and more stats.

Flasks are, again, very flexible. I personally use the life flask for more regen, quicksilver because we're not very fast, basalt with armour because who doesn't want more phys reduction, rumi's to take block from 15% to 35% and give us 10% spell block, and Kiara's because 3 seconds of freeze/chill/curse/stun immunity is invaluable in every situation.

In helmet
For general clearing
Vaal summon skeletons > Minion life > Minion damage > Combustion > Ignite proliferation > Infernal Legion

For Shaper/Guardians
Minion Damage/Elemental Focus > Concentrated effect > Fire Penetration

CWDT > Whatever you want > Phase run > Increased duration I am running Flesh Offering to trigger the Plaguebringer bonuses automatically.

Curse > Curse > Curse > Blasphemy
This can be changed to anything you want. My current setup is Flammability, Elemental weakness and Temp chains. But you can swap Temp chains for Despair for more burn damage.
In 3.8 I am running the first 2 curses and Arctic Armour until I can find a good enough +1 curse amulet.

In weapon 1
Summon chaos golem > Minion life > Minion and totem elemental resistance
This is also pretty flexible. My golem, with all the passives and being corrupted to level 21 has 100k life and plenty of resists. It has tanked every bit of content I have played, including red elder and shaper.

In weapon 2
Ball lightning > Faster projectiles > Greater multiple projectiles
This is just because I'm testing a few different methods of activating EE. Up until level 92 I had CWDT > Vortex > Aoe because it was useful to slow everything in melee range even further. You can put anything you want here.

Mindless Aggression first. Bone Barrier or Unnatural Strength depending on if you want more damage or defense when leveling. Your final point is up to you, you can take Plaguebringer since 10% reduced damage from hits is pretty substantial or just take multiple small points for more overall damage. Commander of darkness is bad, Mistress of Sacrifice has nothing we need and Essence Glutton is just average.

For Pantheons I took Soul of Solaris because it's a solid defense choice all around. I took Soul of Shakari because I can be immune to poison which means I never need an anti poison flask. None of the other minor souls are really worth using.

Updating for 3.8 as I play
Last edited by Killertortilla on Sep 20, 2019, 2:37:15 PM
Last bumped on Oct 2, 2019, 7:14:48 PM
Hello. Leveling similar build with 1 exsection, wanna use zombies as a meat shield instead of kaom. What are your thoughts about it?
That should work fine but I am also making revisions for a tankier version of this right now. I have 5 endurance charges, 8.3k life and instant warcry but about 10% less damage.

The problem is zombies are still dumb as hell and they can do really dumb things like all running to one enemy while an entire pack of archers fire straight at where they were and you end up taking the hits anyway. I just rather rely on my own movements than the AI but it's completely up to you.
Last edited by Killertortilla on Sep 16, 2019, 4:29:08 AM
Looking forward to see it. Tnx for reply.
Just so you are aware, you completely neglect the infernal legion burn being affected by minion resist aswell in your calculation of scepter vs maligaro, maligaro does detonate them faster, but i'd still say 2 scepter overall is better.
onlyoso wrote:
Just so you are aware, you completely neglect the infernal legion burn being affected by minion resist aswell in your calculation of scepter vs maligaro, maligaro does detonate them faster, but i'd still say 2 scepter overall is better.

Thanks, updated with proper calculations. I would also still use sceptres.

Also updated with the tankier version.
You should try the new fortress Covenant jewel.

I am able to get 100% increased damage taken on my skeletons (even 120 if I really want to)

The fire damage taken will than be 154% a second

I use Maligaros and cast the skeletons on myself. The 2% heal gets pretty good once you cast 4 skellies at a time that burn down in 0.45 seconds.

I use summon skeleton, minion life, minion dmg, spell echo, empower, infernal legion

With some investment you can get your skellies to around 20000 life. This means each dead skelly will heal you for 400 life. With 4 Skellies per cast that's 1600 life. With a max number of 12 skellies you are able to make 3 casts without overwriting. I don't know how quick you can possibly get on casting skeletons but in theory you able to cast 24 skellies a second without overwriting.


With spell echo and 3 ghastly eye jewels of retaliation you can get to 100% increased cast speed. That would be 4 casts a second.

4x4 skellies is 16 skellies a second. That would be 6400 life a second and a huge load of damage

Last edited by H463N on Sep 21, 2019, 1:40:31 PM
Interesting build.

1. Is there budget version of helmet or i just use 6 link chest until i get a helmet like you?

2. And in your gem link i see 2 link 1 for boss and 1 for clear. So i need to change gem? Is there another way no need change gem?

3. Why Frostblink instead flamedash or dash?

4. Your life pool is 8k4 and life instant flask just heal 1k2, Should we use Blood of the Karui?

5. Would you recomend normal version or tankier version?

Sorry if i asked too much.

Thank you
Last edited by insangel0001 on Sep 22, 2019, 10:13:20 AM
Fortress covenant is decent but I don't want to recommend a 3ex jewel. Nearly doubling the cost of the build.

1. Yes, Any combination of the following, in this priority:
+3/2 Minion levels
Minion Life
Minion Damage
More elemental
The build will work just fine with just +2 and minion life which is very cheap.

2. The boss is just for shaper, elder and guardians. Map bosses will die very quickly to the map clear gems.

3. I just use it because it's instant and the speed you get is less important (to me) than being able to react and move instantly. If you can get a good amount of chaos resistance then Forbidden Taste also works.

4. Go for it, I just like having more instant recovery since I can spam it.

5. Recommend normal if you have no intention of going for shaper/uber elder or farming 130 quantity T16's
Fortress covenant is decent but I don't want to recommend a 3ex jewel. Nearly doubling the cost of the build.

Fortress has dropped significantly in price (I got mine for 3/4 of an EX). Where is ideal to place it?

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