Diablo 4 Best Early Game Necromancer
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Best early game Necromancer builds in Diablo 4

Here's how to make the best early game Blood Surge Necromancer in Diablo 4.

Necromancer is an extremely fun class in Diablo 4, but if you’re just getting into it, you’ll definitely want to know the best early game Necromancer build. I play Necromancer and have tried out several builds to determine this as the best early game Necromancer build available. You can refund your abilities and experiment with different abilities, passives, and Skeletal Warriors to find your groove, but here is the best early game Necromancer build in Diablo 4.

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Note: If you want to take a break and pet the dogs in Diablo 4, you can. Just a friendly FYI.

Best Diablo 4 Necromancer early game build — Pros, cons, and playstyle

In my opinion, the Blood Surge Necromancer build is the best early game Necromancer build in Diablo 4. In this guide, I’ll tell you the best abilities to rely on and how to craft the perfect Blood Surge Necromancer up to level 25, which is when you get your ultimate. First, here are the general pros and cons of this build.

  • Pros
    • Great damage output and shield with undead army
    • Amazing AoE damage
    • Tons of healing
  • Cons
    • Reliant on corpses
    • Slow single target damage

Blood Surge Necromancer playstyle, explained

Diablo 4 Blood Surge Necromancer

Screenshot: PC Invasion

The Blood Surge Necromancer playstyle works like this: dash into a group of enemies and use Surge. Retreat behind your skeleton army and use Hemorrhage to deal ranged damage from a safe distance. When enemies close in on you, use Surge and rotate away, always making sure to buff the health and damage of your skeletons by using Raise Skeleton on corpses.

As you perform this playstyle, there’ll be tons of corpses to use to strengthen your undead army and tons of Blood Orbs to heal you and buff your next attacks. Plus, all your Blood attacks are healing you, which means you’ll never die. I love this build, and the only times I’ve died so far are when a boss does a high amount of damage at a rapid rate. If you watch out for that, this best early game Necromancer build is great for every level of player since it’s both fun and effective.

All Diablo 4 best early game Necromancer abilities, explained

We know we are relying on Blood Surge and Hemorrhage for our main DPS, but what other abilities and passives should the best early game Blood Surge Necromancer have — including what Book of the Dead specialty options should we pick?

Blood Surge Necromancer abilities and passives, explained

Diablo 4 Early Game Necromancer Skill Tree

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In chronological order, here is how you should spend your skill points to build the Blood Surge Necromancer.

  • Hemorrhage 1/5
    • Enhanced Hemorrhage 1/1
  • Blood Surge 1/5
    • Enhanced Blood Surge 1/1
  • Unliving Energy 1/3
  • Imperfectly Balanced 1/3
  • Blood Mist 1/5
  • Hemorrhage 2/5
    • Initiate’s Hemorrhage 1/1
  • Blood Surge 2/5
    • Supernatural Blood Surge 1/1
  • Skeletal Warrior Mastery 1/3
  • Skeletal Warrior Mastery 2/3
  • Skeletal Warrior Mastery 3/3
  • Imperfectly Balanced 2/3
  • Imperfectly Balanced 3/3
  • Gruesome Mending 1/3
  • Coalesced Blood 1/3
  • Drain Vitality 1/3
  • Tides of Blood 1/3
  • Coalesced Blood 2/3
  • Tides of Blood 2/3
  • Drain Vitality 2/3
  • Blood Wave 1/1
  • Stand Alone 1/3

Hemorrhage is used for your main ranged attack. Enhanced Hemorrhage and Initiate’s Hemorrhage allow you to deal splash damage after picking up a Blood Orb and fortify yourself with each hit. Blood Surge is your main AoE attack. Enhanced Blood Surge heals you after drawing blood from surrounding enemies and Supernatural Blood Surge fortifies you and increases Blood Surge damage by 20% when at 50% fortified.

Unliving Energy increases your max Essence by three and Imperfectly Balanced increases the Essence required to cast abilities, but it increases their damage by 15%. Blood Mist is a useful ability to use when you want to escape as it allows you to be immune to all attacks, walk around, and heal.

Three stacks of Skeletal Warrior Mastery increase the damage and health of Skeletal Warriors by 45%. Gruesome Mending grants you a 10% increase to all healing sources when under 50% health. Coalesced Blood, Drain Vitality, and Tides of Blood are great synergized Blood passives that increase Blood skill damage by 12% when above 80% health, grants a 25% chance to fortify for 5% health on every blood attack, and deal a 10% increase to Blood overpower damage.

Blood Wave is the ultimate ability that conjures a tidal wave of blood that deals 90% damage and knocks enemies back. Lastly, Stand Alone increases your damage reduction by 6% and an additional 2% for every minion on the field.

All of these skills combined will make you nigh unkillable thanks to all the healing and fortifying. You’ll also be dealing tons of damage thanks to the amazing damage buffs to your Blood skills. Lastly, your Skeleton Warriors will be incredibly power and useful in crowd control.

Blood Surge Necromancer Book of the Dead specialties, explained

With the abilities explained, here are my recommendations for the Book of the Dead specialties.

  • Skeletal Warriors
    • Defenders
      • Upgrade 1: Every six seconds, your Skeletal Defenders negate the next instance of direct damage they take.
  • Skeletal Mages
    • Bone Mages
      • Upgrade 2: Each time a Bone Mage dies from its own attack, they leave behind a Corpse and Fortify you for 11% of your base life.
  • Golem
    • Blood Golem
      • Upgrade 2: While healthy, your Blood Golem gains 25% damage reduction and 50% increased damage.

With Defenders, Bone Mages, and a Blood Golem, you’ll have a large army of undead to fight for you and protect you. The Defenders will stay alive and work together as a shield. The Bone Mages attack, hurting themselves in the process, but that’s okay because we need more corpses and more fortify never hurts. The Blood Golem will be used to deal some good single target damage.

Best early game Necromancer Aspects, explained

Diablo 4 Best Early Game Blood Surge Necromancer

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The two early game Necromancer Aspects I recommend getting are Aspect of the Protector and Blood Seeker’s Aspect. I recommend these two because they are both really great with the Blood Surge Necromancer and their associated Dungeons are very close to Kyovashad.

Aspect of the Protector grants you a 10-second barrier that can absorb up to 210 damage that’s granted after defeating an elite enemy, and this effect can happen every 30 seconds. This is found in the Lost Achieves Dungeon, which is just west of the starting area.

Blood Seeker’s Aspect increases the damage of Blood Lance by 15%. Blood Lance isn’t an ability I recommended in this build, but you can easily slot it in and experiment with it, especially if you pair it with Blood Seeker’s Aspect, which is found in the Mercy’s Reach Dungeon just northwest of Menestad (which also happens to be the best place to farm Crushed Beast Bones).

Other early game Necromancer build options

Though I recommend the Blood Surge Necromancer for grinding the early game, there are two other early game builds that are worth mentioning. The first is the Bone Spear Necromancer and the second is the Shadow Sever Necromancer.

Bone Spear Necromancer

The Bone Spear Necromancer is arguably the best build for endgame, but it’s not great for early game. The objective with the Bone Spear Necromancer build is to spec into Bone Splinters and Bone Spear for our main DPS which has a high critical strike chance, Corpse Explosion and Corpse Tendrils for AoE damage, Blood Mist for evasion, and Bone Storm to delete everything on the screen.

While this build is good, it’s not ideal for early game because you need to constantly sacrifice your summons which leaves you without your undead army for protection. Bone Spear Necromancer is left vulnerable very often, which is what makes it a challenging early build but great build for high single target damage in the endgame.

Shadow Sever Necromancer

The Shadow Sever Necromancer build is an okay early game build, but this build is the weakest Necromancer build in general. This build relies on Sever and Reap as the two DPS abilities, which are both solid ranged attacks that keep you safe. Corpse Explosion and Corpse Tendrils are used for AoE and Blood Mist is used to get out of trouble.

When paired with the right synergy, the Shadow Sever Necromancer build isn’t bad, but it doesn’t have the instant healing and fun playstyle that the Blood Surge Necromancer build has. Because of that, you need to rely on your army, potions, and Blood Mist to stay alive which is a stressful feeling when you’re getting into the game and trying to grind levels.

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Noah Nelson
From his early days of blog-style music, movie, and game reviews to working as the Esports Writer at Coastline Community College, Noah Nelson now works fulltime as a Staff Writer for Attack of the Fanboy and PC Invasion. He has been helping gamers everywhere with Destiny 2 god rolls, Warzone 2 DMZ missions, and collectibles in any indie game for over a year and a half. His Bachelor's Degree in English Rhetoric and Composition with a minor in Journalism from CSULB has shaped him to be a strong writer and editor. His fondest gaming memory is playing Sly Cooper 2 after begging his mom (for hours) to play it before his birthday and he still cries myself to sleep remembering the time he accidentally saved over his 99% completion save file in Kingdom Hearts 2.