[3.16] The Zealous Zolemancer (Level 100 Proven / CI / Aegis / Zombie / Carrion Golem Build)
The Zealous Zolemancer: A Build Guide
I AM NOT UPDATING THIS BUILD FOR 3.17 AND BEYOND!
The core idea of the build still will work in 3.17 and would be a good option for pushing to 100 still in a safe way. Feel free to take the ideas here and run with them! I hit my goal of getting my first level 100 and will be moving on to new things! Thank you to everyone for giving the build a look.
Want to hit 100? Maybe give this a try...
I want to start by explaining defensive side of the build (the main focus).
A list of what this build gets:
All those layers together keep me very comfortable in even crazy Scourge, Delirium and high wave Simulacrum fights.
The goal was to be able to AFK something like an Infused T16 Beachhead map and not die - and I can say, that is a success.
To break down how I get all those defensive layers, the most important part are these three unique items:
Aegis is a staple item in many tanky builds, and for a good reason. The massive amount of ES I can get back on block is my main way to recover ES since minion builds have a hard time recovering without easy access to leech, on kill or hit effects.
Virdi's Veil is a MASSIVE item that, paired with two magic rings, makes me immune to crits and curses - two huge, nasty killers out of the way - and enemies being unlucky is just icing.
Incandescent Heart is a very simple, easy to get chest that cuts elemental damage I take by 25% since I am immune to chaos and it converts 25% of all elemental hits to chaos.
All three items pack a lot of Armor and Energy Shield, so I made sure to grab ones with very high rolls and get 29~30% quality on them to boot.
The corruption on Aegis for 8% of physical damage taken as chaos is also a huge boon, though not a cheap one to start off with and is not required.
By skipping offensive auras, I can also fit Discipline, Determination AND Purity of Elements into this build, giving me massive chunks of my ES/AR and ridding me of pesky ailments.
My flasks are a huge defensive layer not to be overlooked as well. All are rolled with "Gain 7 charges when you are hit by an enemy" paired with "Used when charges reach full" to keep near 100% uptime.
A flat 20% reduced Elemental damage taken on the trio of Sapphire/Ruby/Topaz with a Basal for even more armor, and a Quicksilver (cause I'm pretty slow without it up...) is wonderful.
Honestly, the suffix rolls on them are not as important. 3% life regen, extra armor, and stun and block recovery are the big three, with stun avoidance and movement speed on the other two.
Another big bang of defenses is the reduced/less damage trio of my ascendancy causing enemies near corpses to deal reduced damage, enfeeble causing enemies to deal less damage, and Fungal Ground from the Sporguard body armor on my Animate Guardian causing enemies to deal less damage.
Everything else on the list comes from various other things, such as a jewel with Immune to Corrupted Blood, but all comes together to finish off my defensive layers.
Even though I focus HEAVILY on defense for this build, it's not exactly "ZDPS", either.
I am no expert in setting up a PoB - especially figuring out minion DPS - but I estimate that my build is doing around 4.5 milion Shaper DPS.
This comes from the wonderful combo of:
All my minions are supporting each other AND doing damage in this build, rather than one being the focus with others as pure support.
It is also almost all pure Physical damage, meaning I don't need to worry about resistances, and with 35% "overwhelm" effect, armor on monsters is not a huge deal.
My Zombies provide Feeding Frenzy and Intimidate, while also stunning enemies.
My Carrion Golems provide a MASSIVE base physical damage buff.
My Specters and Animate Guardian maim enemies for increased physical damage taken, as well as their own unique buffs and debuffs.
My Grave Spirits....mostly look cool, and I think chill (sometimes).
The Carrion Golem, in particular, gives my zombies around 25% of their damage JUST from their buff. It becomes this strong because they are level 32 with around 300% increased Buff Effect.
That means their buff is around 216-328 base physical damage for all my other minions.
From sources such as War Banner, Maim, Intimidate, Animate Guardian's Helmet, and a Demon Harpy Specter, I also debuff enemies to take a LARGE amount of increased physical damage.
Both my Zombies and Carrion Golems are set to "Aggressive" and have large amounts of movement speed to zip around and clear things as I stroll by.
The build is very, very simple to play.
With Bone Armor on my left click, and only two other buttons: one for Frostblink and one for Bane, I simply run through packs, blinking over any large groups of mobs or obstacles, and using Bane on anything scary (mostly just bosses, thick rares, and scourge) so they deal less and take more damage with the two curses linked to it.
By just running around, my wand triggers Desecrate+Flesh Offering for me.
The minions simply do their thing as they are aggressive. Without Convocation, blinking or running a bit off-screen will re-set them to me if I need them.
Since flasks are also automated, and I don't *need* curses or flesh offering up, I can just AFK and alt-tab out to read Reddit while doing a delve node, blight map or something like Coward's Trial or Beachhead, and get all the EXP I want.
Specters / Animate Guardian
Jewels / Cluster
6L (Body Armor)
Raise Zombie + (Anomalous) Feeding Frenzy + (Awakened) Multistrike + (Awakened) Melee Physical Damage + (Awakened) Brutality + Ruthless
Summon Carrion Golem + Empower + (Awakened) Minion Damage + (Awakened) Banality
Animate Guardian + Raise Specter + Minion Life + Maim
Bane + Enhance + (Anomalous) Vulnerability + Enfeeble
Desecrate + (Divergent) Flesh Offering + Inspiration
Purity of Elements + War Banner + Frostblink
I am no PoB expert, so this will just be a basic rundown of my current tree and gear
I apologize in advance for how shit I am at recording video...
Maze of Minotaur Map
T16 Delirium/Beyond Map (Bad Demo)
AFK T16 Infused Beachhead
Notes on keeping minions alive
Unfortunately, with all the layering of my own defenses, my minions - especially my zombies - can tend to sometimes...die. I also don't have the mana to re-summon them unless I take off War Banner first.
This is not an issue for me, I am fine to take off my banner and click a couple buttons to re-summon a zombie or two, but I know for some people it is frustrating.
If you want your zombies to stay alive, you should be prepared to make your OWN changes to the build to get them tankier.
It will probably require taking away a bit of defense or damage, but that's totally fine with the levels this build has.
If you follow the build as I have outlined, you *should* only be losing the odd zombie (if any) in regular content, up to things such as T16 well-rolled maps, and with a Bone Offering swap only losing a few to the harder content in the game. Your other minions should not die to much at all.
If you find they are dying, make sure you check the following:
With 2% life regen, 1% life gained on hit, 1% life leech, all the minion life I pick up on the tree, my ascendancy points, and my auras on them, the zombies are doing a decent job staying alive.
Don't forget to swap around your offering based on the content you do!
Notes on leveling
Generally, just level as a basic summoner, or any other flavor of leveling.
I just slapped zombies into a Tabula with skeletons in a Lifesprig and it felt fine. Minions are strong enough to carry you until you can start equipping your key uniques.
The switch to CI I made at around 50 after buying a few pieces of decent starter ES gear. I died a few times around the swap while leveling, but it wasn't a huge deal.
Notes on keeping it budget
The build works really well WITHOUT all the mix-maxing I have done.
I had no corruptions, scourge modifiers, GG flasks, Awakened gems, etc. until the mid 90s and it felt just as good with the core uniques and 5k ES.
A +2 to gems wand with trigger crafted on it is a huge QOL improvement and the bonus specter and zombie is really nice, so make that your first big purchase if you can. Using anything with some minion damage, or even a Mon'tregul's Grasp, is totally fine until then.
9 zombies, 3 golems, and just ok armor and ES is enough to help you farm for the rest. I started the build with around 2 exalts or so after giving up on a level 93 Cyclone Raider and it was fine. The damage might not be amazing at that point, but your defense should still be very strong for the budget.
Last edited by Yordle on Jan 27, 2022, 8:27:40 PM
Last bumped on May 8, 2022, 10:00:53 AM
on Nov 27, 2021, 7:14:41 PM
Any chance you could post some videos on the bossing and clearing of the build?
on Nov 27, 2021, 8:56:21 PM
I can definitely try and get some short clips together. My PC isn't great and it's been a while since I tried recording anything, but I should be able to get something.
Honestly, it's not that exciting to watch as it just looks like any other zombie build, haha, but I know it helps to see.
EDIT: some videos are up now!
Last edited by Yordle on Nov 27, 2021, 11:27:24 PM
on Nov 27, 2021, 9:19:49 PM
how much cost?
on Nov 28, 2021, 11:30:39 AM
My current gear is probably around 40~50 exalts of just very slowly upgrading and min-maxing as I go, but I did craft some stuff and buy other stuff when it was cheaper, so hard to say an exact #.
However - I started the build with just the three core uniques, no corruptions or scourge mods, no Awakened or alt quality gems, and just some basic rares. That was maybe like 2 exalts of funding to start.
on Nov 28, 2021, 12:39:35 PM
on Nov 28, 2021, 1:57:37 PM
One of the best character ive ever played!!!!! Ty so much for bringing carrion golem to life!!!! So hard to find a reliable and tanky minion build those day's... Cost me about 50 ex to fund the build with high end gear so definitely a good starter build with 1-2 ex investment.
on Nov 29, 2021, 6:25:56 AM
this is the best necro build i ever played, just run around into everything and my es is not moving at all and everything dies, there is no better necro build for this amount of currency hands down. Tnx for this guide
on Dec 1, 2021, 9:45:16 AM
Currently playing the build on a 3EX budget.
Great defences for sure, DPS is lacking but what can you expect at 3EX for a build this tanky!
Will continue to push on and try even the DPS out, thanks for posting!
on Dec 1, 2021, 3:02:09 PM
Well, I did it! Hit 100.
Not as quickly as I had hoped with a very busy couple of weeks, but because I only ended up dying once early on (double fireblast Uber Atziri when trying to finish a challenge, heh) it still felt good to keep making progress every time I logged on.
I'm basically done for the league now that I've got my challenges done and hit 100, but I will still hang around this thread on occasion if anyone has questions or comments. Not sure if I will update it at 3.17, will have to see what that league brings us. This was purely made to hit 100, and that will NOT be my goal again, hah - doing that mostly solo was way too much of a grind. Glad I did it, though!
on Dec 5, 2021, 4:21:59 PM