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The enchantress is a well known build, casting enchant on herself and her teammates, boosting their ar and giving them huge amounts of fire damage. A necromancer with a full enchanted army is a force to be reckoned with.
But what if the enchantress could create her own army to enchant? That's what the necronomica does.
There are a few weapons that allow us to accomplish this, namely:
The crescent moon runeword (30 charges of level 18 summon spirit wolf)
The harmony runeword (25 charges of level 20 revive and +2-6 valkyrie)
The eternity runeword (88 charges of level 8 revive)
When wearing the crescent moon you can summon spirit wolves. The good thing about spirit wolves is that unlike revives, they don't have timed life; they fight to the death. However, that's kind of the problem. They die, alot. They will have no synergy at all from dire wolves, resulting in their life being at 60-82. Nope, not hell viable.
Harmony is probably the alternative most people are interested in. It has 3 key mods: A level 10 vigor aura, 25 charges of level 20 revive and up to +6 valkyrie for any class. The runeword can only be put in bows, meaning shields are out. The high level revive allows you to have many up a time. The valkyrie adds another minion to your party; and a very sturdy one at that. The vigor aura lets you and your minions run faster.
The problem is that the amount of revive charges are few. A revive lasts at most 3 minutes due to its timed life, meaning you'll have to make new ones constantly. If you for example summon 5 revives at a time your charges will run out after 15 minutes, so you'll have to revisit town quite often. The valkyrie attacks too slowly to be of much use. Vigor on the other hand is great. You'll be teleporting most of the time, so it won't be of much use to you, but after you teleport, your minions will spread alot faster and get into battle quicker. A downside with the vigor aura is that the revives will be harder to enchant since they're running all over the place.
Harmony is a good choice, and it's also fun. However, it only has 25 charges of revive, so you'll need to go back to town alot, and it prevents you from using a shield. The total repair cost for all 25 charges is almost 350k, which might be problematic to say the least.
This is certainly the most flexible (and expensive) option, and what I personally chose. 88 charges will take you quite far. You can only have a maximum number of 8 revives at a time if using eternity, but that's plenty. Even if you could have more out at a time with harmony, you shouldn't. Eternity is also one-handed, allowing you to wear a shield. The cannot be frozen is worthless, since you'll never be attacking or running. Compared to harmony, this is better for longer trips. Even though eternity is indestructable you'll still be able to repair the charges, since only the durability is unrepairable.
Basically, choose either harmony or eternity. Both work, although you'll probably need a goldfind barb/nec to constantly supply gold to repair the charges.
I know there are other weapons that grant you single monsters, like bloodmoon or beast, but putting the task of killing the whole army of hell on a single fluffy bear is a bit cruel.
We all know about the issues with revives. They walk around sniffing flowers, get stuck behind rocks and like to dissapear before their timer runs out if you're too far away from them. Teleport will solve this. We will use the necromancer's telebomb strategy.
”But harmony-users will fire their bows right? I mean, at least against immunes?”
Nope, harmony is not demon machine. It does not splash, it does not pierce, and unless you put it in a demon crossbow, it will be dreadfully slow without ias. Plus, you'll be doing something more important.
This will be your skill build, completed at level 85:
20 fire mastery
1 static field
1 energy shield
1 shiver armor
1 cold mastery
20 frozen orb
Spare points into energy shield
This gives us a strong enchant, insane mana regeneration and a powerful orb.
The orb has 3 uses:
1.To slow enemies down (in case you're not using a holy freeze merc)
2.To kill large groups of enemies
3.Killing fire immunes (main reason)
It also gives you something to do (you should be using it vs non-immunes too).
The energy shield is also great. You will carry alot of +mana% gear, and you will have a high level warmth, so you'll be bathing in mana basically. My enchantress regenerated mana faster than she spent it even when teleporting. Now all that excess mana will come to use.
I suggest you prioritize the orb before the enchant. You will want a maxed orb when your build is finished.
The hard part of guides is always the equipment, but I feel that the gear choices for this build fit really well. This build relies alot on teleport, so fcr is important (it will also help your orb). Harmony-users will be aiming for the 65% breakpoint and eternity-users will be aiming for the 105% breakpoint. +skills are also great for this build. They will boost warmth, enchant, fire mastery, static, teleport, energy shield, shiver armor, cold mastery and orb. And if you use harmony +all skills will also boost your valkyrie, so +skills are very important. Then of course we need resists. Yes, I know resists don't decrease the mana drainage from es, but it doesn't matter, we need resists.
Eternity or harmony. Get any appropriate base weapon with as low requirements as possible, although if you want resale value it would probably be best to put the harmony in a great bow. Remember to not put eternity in an etheral weapon, since then you won't be able to repair the charges. Unfortunately, this will kill its resale value.
No; not cta, not ”memory” staff, not enchant orb or anything. Your revives will dissapear if you switch weapons. If using harmony, get another harmony on switch for when your charges run out and you don't want to go back to town (although I have tried and 25 charges do last you longer than it sounds). You can do the same for eternity, but it will cost you 2 and a half highrunes more, and I'm not sure if it's really needed, since eternity has alot of charges. So you could use a memory staff I guess, as long as you only use it with no revives out. Prerably the base staff would have have 3 es. Take note that your revives will always dissapear when you switch, even if you switch to an identical weapon.
What you could do would even be combining the two weapons. Have harmony in your main hand and eternity on switch. When one runs out, you use the other. Except the weapon spot and shield spot, the 2 builds look pretty much the same, so it's definitely doable, and will give you some variety.
Shield (only for those who use eternity):
Spirit, no contest. +2 all skills, fhr, mana, fcr, resists. It's like made for this build. Forget max block, and forget lidless. Harmony-users will take a big blow passing this up. Unless you want to sacrifice +skills/resists for extra fcr% you'll have to get a perfect spirit to reach the fcr% breakpoint.
Nightwing's veil. Boosts your orb, gives you +skills (which also boosts your orb, among other things). Forget shako.
No, not metalgrid. Iron golems attack too slowly, and it's only one. Metalgrid does give resists, but so does mara's. And mara's has +skills. It's basically +2 skills vs an iron golem. +skills are so useful for this build so I'd say Mara's wins, but I'm sure many of you still will use metalgrid, if only for the style points.
Magefist. 20% fcr, +1 fire skills, no contest.
Silkweaves. The extra mana will fuel our es, as will the mana after each kill.
You'll probably say stone, so we can get a clay golem, or corpsemourn, so we can use CE and be more like necromancers, but the aswer is no. Stone has nice resists and fhr, as well as the golem, but it's just not worth it. Yes, we won't be that much like necromancers, but we need +skills and fcr. Corpsemourn is also out, the armor spot is just too valuable to pass up for a novelty like that.
There are two real options here. Vipermagi and Ormus robes.
Vipermagi is a great all around armor. It has +1 to all skills, 30% fcr and resists.
Ormus robes gives damage. You should try to find a +3 enchant one, or else vipermagi is better. Even if you have a +3 es one don't bother.
What Ormus gives is a stronger orb, due to the 10-15% extra cold skill damage. Ormus robes can't give +3 to a level 30 skill, so unfortunately it can't give +3 orb. Yes, the 10-15% fire skill damage will boost your enchant, but only by about 4% if you have a level 36 fire mastery and perfect Ormus, and even less if your fire mastery is a higher level.
What do you lose when wearing Ormus compared to vipermagi? Not only +1 all skills, but +2 all skills, since the lower fcr% on the armor will have to be compensated with a fcr% ring, which will replace a SoJ. So fire mastery actually loses 2 levels, decreasing your fire mastery value by 14%. So if you have a perfect fire enchant Ormus you'll effectively get an extra 1% to your fire mastery value, which increases your final enchant damage by about 0,3%.
You'll also lose alot of resists wearing Ormus, something that won't be easy compensating.
Basically it's up to you. I chose vipermagi, but if you want that extra oomph in your orb, and a slightly stronger enchant (due to the extra skill point), at the cost of basically everything else, go for it.
SoJ. Not only does it give +1 to all skills, it also gives alot of mana, for fueling your es.
If you use vipermagi, another SoJ. If you have ormus robes, some kind of ring. Either get a bahamut's ring of the apprentice (100+ mana and 10% fcr) or even better, a rare ring with fcr%, +mana and all resists. But this is not the only build that needs these kinds of rings, so you'll need to pay alot for them.
Arachs. +1 all skills, 20% fcr, and even a tiny mana boost. It's perfect.
You'll have 2 sockets. One in your nightwing's and one in your vipermagi/Ormus. I'd recommend putting ums or resistance jewels there (especially if using Ormus). To fix the resistance hole caused by spirit (if you use eternity) you might want to put a ral or a 30% fire res jewel with another mod in one of the sockets, although I wouldn't recommend it. It's much cheaper compensating the lacking fire resistance with charms. You could put cold facets in the sockets, but I wouldn't recommend that either. And don't even think about filling the sockets with fire facets, sacrificing 30 all resists for just one and a half levels of fire mastery. Minions do not benefit from -enemy resistance% on your equipment.
Torch and anni, obviously. When it comes to skillers, all 3 sorc ones are ok to use. Lightning skillers boost your es and teleport. Cold skillers boost your orb and cold mastery, while fire skillers boost your enchant (and fire mastery which boosts your enchant). I used fire skillers, but the others work too of course. You'll also want to hit a fhr breakpoint, or else alot of your fhr will go to waste, so get enough fhr charms for that. And at last you'll want to boost your resists, to max if possible. If you're using eternity, get 3 fire resist small charms with 11% fire resistance each, filling the hole caused by your spirit (unless you've already put a ral or fire res jewel in one of your sockets). As I've mentioned before, it won't protect your mana, but resists will protect your life. If you have space left over for more charms (which I doubt) you can get some +life and +mana charms.
The harmony enchantress with a vipermagi/Ormus + fcr ring, will have 70% fcr, hitting the 65% breakpoint. The eternity enchantress will get an extra 35% from their perfect spirit (or mediocre spirit and extra fcr ring), hitting the breakpoint at 105% fcr.
Harmony-users should aim for 96 after bonuses from gear, while eternity-users should aim for 156 after bonuses from gear.
Enough for your weapon after bonuses from gear.
Since you'll be using energy shield, mana is a part of your life, and sorcs gain more mana/point in energy than life/point in vitality. However, mana isn't totally reliable, as the % of damage transferred to mana isn't 100%, as well as alot of monsters in hell being mana burners, so you'll still want a decent healthpool. I'd aim at around 700 or 800 life.
The merc is not at all restricted like most builds. The choice is quite free, but the best options are probably an act 1 or act 2 merc.
The act 1 merc can carry your enchant and shoot it at enemies from a distance, with a 9 frame attack at most. It can be more practical with a ranged way of dealing enchant damage when you already have so many revives anyway. You don't want your merc to be just another revive.
The act 2 merc works better when you telebomb. If you teleport right next to an enemy the rogue might back away, and just when she's about to shoot you'll teleport to a new enemy, while the act 2 merc starts atacking as soon as you teleport. The act 2 merc will also attack faster than the rogue, although it may sometimes take him a long time to get to the enemy, which the rogue doesn't need to do. We can't really take any big advantage of any of his auras either.
As for merc equipment, you'll want to focus on ias, to apply enchant damage faster, and leech, to enable survival.
If using an act 1 rogue, a harmony would be a great option for an eternity user. It will apply vigor to your army, as well as giving the rogue good physical and elemental damage, for immunes. She won't use the valkyrie (and the ctc from peace doesn't work either), and she won't use the revive charges, but it's still a solid choice. Stick it in a great bow.
Faith is viable too. Minions attacking faster makes them apply the enchant damage more often. Unfortunately, you can't enchant the returned spawned from faith, and they won't teleport with you either. The same applies if you use the faith yourself. They're not your minions, they're just monsters on the map fighting the same enemies as you.
She could also wear a ”wrath” bow. Decreptify will cripple the enemies offensive capabilities. The ctc lifetap is quite useless though, as the revives don't need it, since they're more or less invincible anyway. Wrath also gives elemental damage for fighting fire immunes. The physical damage will be pathetic though as it has no weapon ed%. Damage vs undead or demons always counts as off-weapon ed%, even if it's on the weapon.
A fourth option is giving the act 1 merc an edge bow and a bramble armor. This will grant you a thorns aura up to level 36. With all your walking tanks it fits quite perfectly with the build. However, even with a level 36 thorns don't expect it to devastate the enemies. In nightmare and hell they have too much health compared to their attack for thorns to be really effective, but it can still help alot. If you can't afford bramble, I wouldn't bother going this route. A level 15 thorns won't cut it. Also remember edge, just like wrath, has no weapon ed%, so forget big physical damage on your merc if you choose this combo.
Also remember that rogue mercs cannot wear amazon only items, so don't make anything in a grand matron bow. If you're making a runeword for her, use a great bow, or blade bow.
As for act 2 mercs, the holy freeze one would probably be the best. Some monsters are fast, and will be in your face before you've have time to react, and cast your orb. Your orb also doesn't slow down cold immunes. Holy freeze more or less ensures you that all monsters around you are slowed. You might also want to use a might merc, but you won't be attacking, and the revives deal pitiful physical damage, so it's basically only for the merc himself and your valk (if you have one), but it does certainly help the merc take on tough immunes. You could use a thorns merc too. It won't be THAT effective but it's still good nonetheless, and unlike the thorns rogue, he'll still have all his equipment spots open.
There are many different possible weapons for the act 2 merc.
One is of course infinity (my personal pick). It has alot of damage and crushing blow, as well as a conviction aura. I know it will hardly break any fire immunities (especially in the later acts), but it still works vs non-immunes. -85% resistance will always increase fire damage vs non-immunes by at least 85%, and possibly double that if the enemy has some fire resistance. It's a solid choice. Giant threshers and threshers are better than colussus volgues and cryptic axes, due to the former being much faster.
If you can't afford an infinity, or want to give some defensive bonuses to your merc too, obedience is also great. It's like an infinity minus the conviction plus some fhr and resists, another solid choice.
Another choice is an (etheral) reaper's toll. It's a bit like a wrath for act 2 mercs, with added life leech, deadly strike, damage and itd. One of my favorites.
An etheral upped hone sundan with some appropriate jewels/runes works too of course, if you want pure damage (it would be similar to obedience).
As for armor and helms, any merc not wearing a wrath or edge should use a fort for added physical damage (ebugged if possible). Otherwise treachery is a great choice. Andariel's visage is probably the best helm for almost any merc, with both ias and leech. Socket your merc's helm and possibly weapon with appropriate amounts of ias jewels/shaels to let the merc hit the next breakpoint. There are too many combinations for me to say how much ias he/she needs, so use this calculator and see for yourself: http://diablo3.ingame.de/tips/calcs/...p?lang=english
If you have any sockets left over, fill it with whatever your merc needs are, like leech (amn) or crushing blow (ber) etc.
You will have more mana than life, and your mana will regenerate alot faster than your life. You'll want as much damage transferred to your mana as possible, so you want a high level energy shield. However you can't afford to put more hard points there. Energy shield has an incredibly long duration, so I suggest you prebuff it every time you start a game. You can have a +3 es memory staff in your stash/on switch, as well as maybe some lightning skillers prepared in your stash. If it runs out in the field you can just refresh it with your normal gear, as it will be quite strong anyway.
As for the valkyrie, she's only worth prebuffing if you can get her to the level 17 breakpoint, where she gains a new weapon, giving her a big increase in physical damage. This is only possible if you have a cta and a perfect harmony. You'll have to first use battle command, and then wear your harmony, a +2 skill arkaines valor (or a CoH or an enigma), your mara's, your nightwing, your arach, 2 stones of jordan and your anni. This will summon a level 17 valk that you can have for the remainder of the game, as long as you don't switch back to the cta again, because then both your revives and your valk will die.
As for prebuffing enchant, don't bother, especially not on your revives, since they only last for 3 minutes. You might have some +5/6 enchant orb in your stash which you can quickly use on your merc (and possibly valk) at the beginning of a game, which is useful, but you can do without it.
Since enemies in hell have about 100 times more life than they deal damage, your revives will be invincible, but it also means they'll deal very little physical damage. If your merc has a low damage weapon, you'll have to use frozen orb to kill fire immunes.
Don't revive many revives at once and then try to enchant them all. It's hard to see which ones are enchanted, and you may forget which ones that are, and need to enchant them all again. Revive one or two monsters, and enchant them, and then revive another two and enchant them etc., so you know that all of them are enchanted. It maybe goes without saying but the enchants have a much longer duration than the revives, so if you enchant a revive as soon as it is born it's good to go.
Have frozen orb on your left click, and the rest of the skills on your right click. This way, you can cast frozen orb at any time. The best way would be holding down shift and clicking in the direction you want to cast, instead of clicking on an enemy.
Never use the last revive charge on your weapon. If you do so, all your revives (including the one summoned when using the charge) dissapear, so always leave at least 1 revive charge on your weapon until you repair it.
If you do not have a goldfinding character or think it's too expensive and takes too long time to get the gold to repair your weapons, you could alternatively cube it with an ort rune and a chipped gem. This will fully repair your weapon without costing gold.
Keep track of what your minions are doing. Sometimes they might be fighting a fire immune, wasting time. Teleport next to non-fire-immunes so the revives will attack then, and then you can go and orb the immunes.
If you see a good type of enemy that you want to revive, it may be good not casting frozen orb on them, since the bodies might shatter.
If you hit a skill shrine and enchant your merc (and valk), and the shrine buff dissapears, you won't be able to refresh their enchant until theirs has expired, since a lower level enchant can't override a higher level one. You'll need to check their weapons until they aren't red anymore, and then refresh it. It might be better just skipping the skill shrines.
Only revive aggressive enemies, like fallen rogues, frenzytaurs and baboon demons. Archers are even better though in my opinion, since they all can stand in the same place and attack as soon as you teleport, instead of taking time to surround the enemy. Serpent magi are also very effective and fun to revive, and their bone spears carry enchant damage for some weird reason (spells shouldn't carry it), I really recommend reviving them. The best revives are probably blunderbores, gorebellies, maulers and urdars, due to them having crushing blow (15% in nightmare, 25% in hell) which especially helps vs fire immunes and bosses. Before a boss battle you can go to the river of flame, durance of hate or palace cellar and revive some, letting you take down bosses even faster than you already do.
Thanks for reading