Necromancer

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The Necromancer belongs to the dark brotherhood of the arcane arts, dabbling in death.
Through evil spells, he can animate dead bodies and skeletons to do his bidding, as well as cast spells to leach life from his victims. - EverQuest manual

Description

Necromancers are masters of life and death, utilizing fire, magic, poison, and disease based spells to overwhelm their foes and assist their allies. Their choice to descend into necromancy has alienated them from most old-world civilizations, being killed on sight by most guards and shunned by many merchants. As such, the necromancer is very independent; few support classes are able to offer anything that the necromancer does not already have, and items and gear do not carry the same weight as they do for other classes.

The necromancer's power comes from a deep understanding of the powers of life and death. This grants them a number of abilities, including the ability to mezmerize, snare, and fear their enemies, to transfer mana and health to their allies, and lastly to assert their dominance over the undead with a number of efficient direct damage, charm, root and lull spells. The necromancer is classified as anti-natural and has some unique spells to attack animals and plant based mobs.

A highlight of the necromancer is their DoT (Damage over Time) spells, where they are one of the premier classes in the game. These abilities tick (one tick = 6 seconds) for exceptional damage over time, at a relatively cheap cost to mana. The efficiency of these spells, as it will be discussed later, declines when the enemy dies before the DoT runs its course. This lends itself well, however, to soloing, where necromancers can see the full potential of their DoTs, as well as utilizing their ability to snare, fear, and root their enemies, as well as charm them, if they are undead. Furthermore, combining the spells Screaming Terror (mezmerize) and Feign Death, necromancers can split mobs with the best of classes, and so have great survivability when played at their full potential.

In addition to these, the Necromancer has access to one of the most powerful mana regenerating abilities in the game, commonly referred to as lich (after the level 49 spell). The Lich line of spells grant a buff that passively removes health in exchange for giving the Necromancer mana. Beginning with Dark Pact, and Allure of Death, these spells merely change health into mana, however with Call of Bones, Lich, and even Demi-Lich, the caster's flesh melts away, leaving a skeleton form for the Necromancer. This increased mana generation allows the Necromancer to have more mana, which translate into more spells in a period of time.

Necromancers are sought after in raids & groups for a number of reasons, including but not limited to their damage, ability to transfer health, and to generate mana which can be granted to party members in times of need.

  • As mentioned, there are many reasons to seek out a necromancer. They deliver incredible damage by stacking different, numerous DoTs, and can do this without fear of taking aggro through the use of feign death, which removes the hate the enemy has for the necromancer. However, the primary way that a necromancer deals damage is through damage over time abilities, creating a tension between a necromancer and his or her group. The better the group, the faster, higher damaging abilities that a necromancer must use, but these spells become less efficient in mana due to their high burst. This means that the mana efficiency of a necromancer is inversely proportional to the damage output of a group. As the group is doing less damage, the necromancer can use more mana efficient, but slow spells, but the faster the group is, the more the necromancer must use less mana efficient spells, to the point of not using DoTs and using Direct Damage spells. For long duration events, the ability for a necromancer to continue destruction is unsurpassed.

Necromancer have hands-down the most efficient detrimental spells in the game from a pure Damage per Mana (DPM) standpoint... but in practical application in the fast-paced group or raid atmosphere, the necromancer can be relegated to being a failure as a DPS in terms of DPM. As a group becomes more effective, the Necromancer will end up using less mana efficient, but faster spells, sacrificing DPM for the sake of getting the DPS out before the enemy dies. Only during solo activities and the more lengthier (raid) fights can the necromancer generally get their efficiency as advertised. However, the high mana regeneration capability compensates for this.

Another unique attribute of DoT spells is that they are either applied fully or resisted fully, unlike instant damage spells (nukes) which can be partially resisted. Because of this, some necromancer spells, specifically the lifetap and blood boil spell line have resistance modifiers that help them land on highly resistant enemies.

  • Their ability to pull is minor in the group or raid game due to the difficulty surviving taking hits as a cloth wearer, netting a necromancer extremely low AC caps and HP, as well as a cast/recast timer on Feign Death. From a pure pulling efficiency standpoint, necromancers are inferior to bards and monks. From a survivability standpoint are surpassed by Shadowknights. Because of this, necromancers generally don't play the role of puller in a large raid environment or against difficult group content. However, the necromancer can generally split off mobs quite well as long as they are not immune to changes in run-speed or linked. One of the primary reasons that necromancers are considered to be inefficient pullers is due to the long reuse timer on feign death, resulting in necromancers taking a considerable amount of time to split a pull.
  • Necromancers also utilize abilities to root, nuke, lull, and charm the undead. These abilities are somewhat limited, but tend to be more mana efficient and tools for certain leveling strategies. In raids, you can end up using charm on certain undead enemies for a greater damage output than your summoned pet could put out. However, there is a maximum level on these, as with all charms, so these do not grant total dominance over the undead.
  • Necromancers are also considered one of the pet classes, as they have undead pets to do their bidding from the very first level, and receive benefit from a single pet focus item. Compared to the main pet class, the magician, necromancer pets are moderately weak (due in part the inability to support them as well as magicians). The Necromancer's pet can be equipped with regular, or magician-summoned gear to dramatically improve their survivability & damage output. The Necromancer has three pet varieties, the first and most common being a warrior, which is along side a monk and a rogue at later levels. The warrior has better survivability but reduced damage when compared to the rogue (which requires proper positioning at the rear of targets to allow backstabbing for any significant damage increase). The monk has slightly more health than the rogue, and can survive better than it, but instead of bash or backstab, it has access to a flying kick.
  • Necromancers also have access to a useful spell-line commonly referred to as twitch. These spells include Rapacious Subvention, Covetous Subversion, and Sedulous Subversion. These spells are cast to give mana to another player, in essence transferring your mana to that player. This can often be useful on fights in which Necromancers are getting resisted too much, or in which their DPS is not necessarily desired. This allows the Necromancer to act as something of a mana generator for buffers and clerics during raid recovery. As a Necromancer, you have among the fastest mana return in the game, and twitch allows you to share some in a pinch.
  • Lastly, the necromancer class is very fun and rewarding as long as you are not determined to be the best in all situations. Necromancers are arguably the most independent of all classes, being designed with a number of self-only spells that certain other casters can cast on others (Self-only invis, self-only succor), making it a prime choice for those that plan to solo the majority of their careers. In addition to this, the necromancer offers a player wanting an alt to solo when they are bored (or frustrated) with their main a chance for a solitary reprieve. However, necromancers are also outstanding additions to raiding guilds because of the extreme DPS potential over the long run, their ability to twitch and help a cleric save lives, or to even patch heal others as needed. A successful necromancer must learn a variety of different strategies that change as a necromancer levels and gains new abilities. These different strategies allow the Necromancer to solo that which would otherwise require a group.

Class Titles

Level 1-50 Level 51-54 Level 55-59 Level 60
Necromancer Heretic Defiler Warlock

Creation Guide

Picking the right race

The first thing you have to pick then is your race. Which race you pick will determine the foundation of you character for the rest of your life in Norrath, so it is kind of important you pick one you like and that you will be happy with.

Now in terms of faction, Necromancers are generally hated everywhere, some races are hated more then others, Gnomes and Humans and Erudites are neutral races and will have an easier time building faction (especially gnomes being the least evil of all the necromancer race choices) vs a Dark Elf or Iksar so there is some difference in the races in that respect.

Human

  • Well rounded statistics
  • No low-light vision
  • Low starting Intelligence


Erudite

  • A number of quests available to them that no other race can do with some decent items
  • Like humans, no low-light vision
  • Highest starting intelligence


Dark Elf

  • Hated everywhere but a couple of other evil towns
  • Harder time building up faction in comparison to the neutral race choices
  • Access to the Thex Mallet and Reaper of the Dead questline (which is believed to be possible to do if you are not a Dark Elf, but requires incredibly high faction)
  • Only necromancer race that can use "hide." If you combine a successful hide while you feign death then you can clear your aggro list safely
    • Keep in mind some enemies can see through hide. But, this is a very useful combination of spell + ability and it shouldn't be overlooked.
  • High starting Intelligence.


Gnome

  • Least hated Necromancer/race combination
  • Easier to build faction with good races to access their areas faster and more efficiently
  • Generally have more access to cities/hubs/zones than other necromancer races
  • Access to the Tinkering skill which can offer some interesting crafting options
  • High Starting Intelligence.


Iksar

  • Hated in all cities besides their own, even those of other evil races.
  • An experience penalty of 20% other races have no penalty.
  • Health regeneration bonus (chart below)
  • A natural AC bonus
  • Access to Forage for food and water
  • Low Starting Intelligence

Froglok

  • +15 Poison Resistance
  • +5 Magic Resistance
  • Swimming (125)

If you are concerned with min/maxing, Iksar regeneration should not be underestimated. As the chart below shows, the Iksar Necromancer will lose health slower, which ultimately means that an Iksar Necromancer can kill more things, faster. This will mean increased experience gain so long as the Iksar Necromancer levels up in places with plenty of enemies to kill (which helps to mitigate the 20% penalty). The chart shows the differences between Iksar and Non-Iksar, for each spell under the Lich spell line in the rows, while across the top of the chart in columns, it offers the different positions that effect the rate of health regeneration.

Iksar vs Non-Iksar: Pre-Lich

Race + LichLevelsStandingFeignedSitting
Non-Iksar with Death Pact1-19-1-10
Iksar with Death Pact1-1900+2
Non-Iksar with Allure of Death20-49-3-3-1
Iksar with Allure of Death20-49-2-2+2
Non-Iksar with Call of Bones20-49-10-10-8
Iksar with Call of Bones20-49-9-9-5

Iksar vs Non-Iksar: Lich

Race + LichLevelsStandingFeignedSitting
Non-Iksar with Lich49-21-21-19
Iksar with Lich49-20-20-16
Non-Iksar with Lich50-21-21-18
Iksar with Lich50-20-20-14
Non-Iksar with Lich51-55-20-19-17
Iksar with Lich51-55-16-14-10
Non-Iksar with Lich56-59-19-18-16
Iksar with Lich56-59-12-10-6
Non-Iksar with Lich60-18-17-15
Iksar with Lich60-10-8-4

Iksar vs Non-Iksar: Arch Lich & Demi Lich

Race + LichLevelsStandingFeignedSitting
Non-Iksar with Arch Lich60-16-15-13
Iksar with Arch Lich60-8-6-2
Non-Iksar with Demi-Lich60-28-27-25
Iksar with Demi-Lich60-20-18-14

Starting Statistics

RACE STR DEX AGI STA INT WIS CHA BONUS
Dark Elf 60 85 90 65 109 83 60 30
Erudite 60 80 70 70 117 83 70 30
Froglok 70 100 100 85 110 75 50 30
Gnome 60 95 85 70 108 67 60 30
Human 75 85 75 75 85 75 75 30
Iksar 70 95 90 70 85 80 55 30

Health vs. Mana

Due to the mechanics of Lich, passively reducing our health every tick in exchange for a boost in mana per tick, necromancers are put into a position of having, in effect, two pools of mana. From their mana, they directly draw for spells, but their health pool acts as a mana battery, constantly being drained to provide more mana for the necromancer's use. So how much health and how much mana should you have?

We should begin by understanding that each of these two have a certain advantage. A sizable mana pool means that when you are coming out of an extended rest (by which it is meant that you will be at full mana and health), you will be able to cast more spells in a small period of time. A sizable health pool means that while you are fighting and engaged in combat, the negative effects of Lich will not be as pressing, and you will have more wiggle room in which to use lifetaps to restore your health.

A great deal of this comes down to feeling, and your own playstyle. Following is a series of considerations that one should keep in mind when finding their "sweet spot" for mana/health ratio. Just remember that both health and mana are effectively power to fuel your spells, but that each of them works differently: Mana is readily available, immediately exploitable resource to cast your spells, while Health is not immediately available, but makes your life much easier and safer.

When to go for Health vs. Mana

Obviously when your HP are full (or very close) you want to focus on gaining Mana; Lifetapping would be wasteful. The same is true in reverse: Lich is wasteful when your Mana is full.

When neither is full, your priorities should depend on two things: your "squishiness" (relative to the mob), and your pace. If you are facing tougher foes (ie. feeling squishy) you'll want to keep your HP higher, as Mana won't help if the mob gets some lucky hits in and kills you.

At the same time, you'll also want to take into account whether you are facing a steady stream of individual mobsm, or bursts of several. If you can't rely on having enough time for your Lich spell to provide more Mana in-between fights, you may want to focus on keeping your Mana higher in-between fights.

Religion

Religion is not of a huge concern to Necromancers as they are already hated. Most choose to worship either Cazic-Thule, or Innoruuk the Prince of Hate, as it ties in well their role. The other choice is Bertoxxulous. Necromancers cannot be agnostic, as their dark powers are directly linked to their worship of their god.