In-depth PvP Bone Nec Guide In-depth PvP Bone Nec Guide v1.051 updated October, 23, 2007 updated October, 23, 2007Contents: 1. Introduction 1a. About me1b. Why a bone necro?1c. Author’s note2. Stats 2a. Starting stats2b. Stats2c. Vita nec vs dr/block nec3. Skills 3a. The “regular” skill layout3b. The “BM” skill layout3c. Overview of the skills3d. Hotkeys4. Breakpoints 4a. What are breakpoints? 4b. Faster Cast Rate4c. Faster Hit Recovery5. Equipment 5a. Checklist5b. Helms5c. Armor5d. Belt5e. Boots5f. Gloves5g. Rings5h. Amulet5i. Weapon5j. Shield5k. Switch5l. Charms5m. Example Setups6. Dueling 6a. Basics6b. Versus specific classes6c. Team duels7. My bone nec 8. Credits and Special Thanks 1. Introduction 1a. About me Hi, I’m Andrew and I’ve been playing necros for pretty much my whole D2 “career”. I NvN’ed with the OTC/PCC/AoC necros during 1.09. PvPWest + Temple for 1.10+. 1b. Why a bone necro? I’m sure most players knows why a bone necro is dominant in pvp but for the minority who do not know, I’ll explain why. A bone necro is considered a caster-type of character and because of this they have good fcr breakpoints. In addition, their main attacks are not able to be completely nullified. Sure there are random pieces of equipment with small amounts of magical resist or magical absorb, but the bone spells will still be very effective. Furthermore, the curse tree can be of great aid during team duels and the summoning tree provides the nec with some extra protection versus other players in pvp. Once you add up all these factors, the necro turns into a monster in the Blood Moor with good killing power and good survivability. 1c. Author’s Note This guide was written for GM dueling “rules”. The GM rules may differ between realms so keep in mind I am from West. 4Lo, 4Vex, etc. I will assume you will be able to afford most of the gear I list. This guide is already posted on another site which would explain why it's version 1.5. I'm aware some of my videos are awful. I hate running Fraps and converting videos. 2. Stats 2a. Starting Stats Level 1 necro stats and general stats information are as follows: Strength: 15 Dexterity: 25 Vitality: 15 Energy: 25 Life: 45 Stamina: 79 Mana: 25 1 point into Vitality gives +2 life and +1 stamina 1 point into Energy gives +2 mana 1 level gives: +1.5 life +1 stamina +2 mana 2b. Stats Strength: None. This will be very easy to achieve because of all the items that provide +strength. Ex: anni, hellfire, enigma, etc. Dexterity: There are two ways to do this. It’s also a very controversial subject. The first path is to leave dexterity at zero ( or as much as you require for your gear) or the second is to get just enough to attain 75% block with your shield of choice. Vitality: All. PvP in 1.09 followed the creed that “damage=king” but in 1.10 and 1.11, it is now “survivability=king”. Because of this, you will want to get as much life as you can. Energy: None. You will get enough mana from items and simply leveling. Also, it’s a common thing in 1.11 to drink mana pots in PvP. This practice is not shunned as it once was in 1.09 so it gives you further reason to leave energy at base. 2c. Vita nec vs dr/block nec A vita nec is one where strength and dexterity are left at base all the points are dumped into vitality. The result is a necro with the highest potential life. On the other hand, a dr/block nec is one where points are spent in dexterity first to reach 75% chance to block before dumping the rest into vitality. So which is better? I would say it boils down to a choice of personal preference. The vita nec will definitely have a lot more life than a dr/block but a dr/block nec can survive longer versus melee characters. Specifically BvCs, amazons and ghosts. However, that is not to say a vita nec has no chance versus these types of characters. Vita necs can take advantage of oak sage and golem stack. On the other hand, a dr/block nec can do this as well to provide even more survivability. Whatever you decide, both work great so don’t sweat it. However, I would add that if you have good vita lifers you should contemplate going block. If you use plains, I would not even consider going block. The life will be too low and make it hard to manage. 3. Skills 3a. The “regular” skill layout *Poison and bone tree max teeth max spear max spirit 1 point into bone armor max bone wall max prison *Summoning 1 point into clay golem 1 point into golem mastery 1 point into summon resist (optional) *Curses 1 point into amplify damage (optional) This layout is completed at 93 without the optional skills. It is suggested that you pick up the clay golem before you max out the last bone synergy. This allows you to be able to start PvP’ing with the minion stack. The golem mastery is mostly to power up your golem. Sometimes, you won’t have time to recast the golem because you have a namelock or something, so it’s helpful.. Amplify damage is for team duels. With amp, physical chars like BvCs and amazons tear through the opposing team. Once again, golem mastey is useful for tanking multiple hits. I don't really see a need for summon resists, but it helps versus cold sorcs. It's not essential though, imo. A variant of this regular setup is to put 1-5 points into Amplify damage before you start attempting to max the last bone synergy. This is strictly for team dueling since more amp = bigger radius = easier to amp in team duels. 3b. The “BM” skill layout *Poison and bone tree max teeth max spear max spirit 1 point into bone armor max prison rest into bone wall after you’re done with the other two skill trees. *Summoning 1 into revive 1 into clay golem 1 into golem mastery (optional) 1 into summon resist(optional) 1 into prereqs *Curses 1 into amplify damage (optional) Assuming you get none of the optional skills, you can begin to max bone wall after level 77. After you max it, you will be 97 and then you can pick 2 optional skills. So ideally, this layout is done at level 99. So why would you sacrifice damage for revives? Well, revives and skeletons provide the necromancer with skills to summon a lot of monsters. This will allow the necro to minion stack and basically be untouchable by projectile without an area of effect ( spells with an AoE include: fireball and to an extent chain lightning etc). The reason it is BM because stacking with revives is considered too cheap and only really defeated by skills like leap or mind blast which can separate the nec from his army. However, after pvp penalties are factored in, there is not much loss in damage. In fact, it will probably be too miniscule for you to even notice. 3d. Overview of the Skills Bone spirit: One of your main attacks. This spell creates a spirit that will track the opponent, has high damage, and ( for the most part) unblockable. However, it is very slow. Bone spear: Another main attack. This skill moves much faster but requires precision and aim to connect a hit. However, this will be your main attack when you namelock and chainlock. Teeth: This skill is very useful for dueling. It is similar to an amazon’s multishot. It fires multiple projectiles that fan out over a distance. This is excellent for killing minions to prevent stack. It can also trigger a stun just long enough for you to get a good namelock. Bone wall: Used for defense against whirlwind, charge, and foh. Bone prison: Used for defense against incoming melee opponents and used offensively against amazons. (I will go into detail on situations to utilize these two skills later) Bone armor: Provides the necro with a shield that will absorb any physical damage. This and a golem stack is usually your first line of defense. Amplify damage: More physical damage allows teammates in a team duel to destroy the opposing team. Clay golem: Provides minion stack. It’s also useful against certain builds because if they hit the golem, they will be affected with the slow. 3c. Hotkeys For hotkeys, I prefer the letter keys because I feel it's faster to switch skills. The keys are also closer to each other which is more efficient. I reccommend: ASDFG ZXCZV A: Bone armor S: Bone spirit D: Bone spear F: Teleport G: Golem Z: Anything ( I have oak sage charges here.) X: Anything ( I have Amplify damage here.) C: Bone wall V: Bone prison Since not everyone might have the patience to pick up the curses and what not, use the Z and X keys for whatever. If you need more, you could always just assign more. 4. Breakpoints 4a. What are breakpoints? 4b. Faster Cast Rate http://img67.imageshack.us/img67/4963/newbitmapimage0xt.png 9 frames (125% fcr) will be required for this bone nec. 4c. Faster Hit Recovery http://img67.imageshack.us/img67/4963/newbitmapimage0xt.png We will try to maintain a 6 frame fhr ( 86%). 5. EquipmentIn this section, I will not simply just give you a setup and pretend it is the best setup ever simply because my own necro uses it. Instead, I will list the best choices for each section and allow you to make your own setup depending on your own preferences. 5a. Checklist When planning your setup, make sure you hit 125% or more fcr and 86% fhr. Some items to keep in your stash: 4Lo shield (trappers/cs), 160light res shield (light stack), 4Vex shield (fire sorcs), Noko+hotspurs/inferno (alternative for max fire), 160 cold res shield (cold sorcs), kiras socketed with whatever elemental you want to stack. (Light or Cold, usually) 5b. Helms 1. Harlequin Crest= This will be your first choice if your necro does not require any fcr that the helm slot could provide. 2 skills for higher warcry levels and damage, a lot of life/mana (although not BO’able), and 10% dr. Shael, jah, ber, Lo, Vex, etc all work. 2. 2skills/20fcr/2socket circlet or 3pnb/20fcr/2socket circlet= Use something of this nature if you require fcr from the helmet slot. A 2nec/20fcr/2os circ is fine. However, a rare one with stats is ideal. +Life, +stats,+res are the mods you should be looking for. These helms are also very versatile. 2 sockets can be used to make up for any shortcomings in your setup. You’ll probably require fhr however, so most of the time these helms are double Sheal’ed. You can VexVex and LoLo 2os circlets for max res. 3. 2skills/20fcr/1socket= These circlets are basically the same except the ones mentioned earlier but lack the extra socket. While it is not as versatile it makes up for these shortcomings with the ability to provide more mods. The mods you should look for on these are: +life, +stats, +res. Usually a shael goes in here, but you could socket it with something different if you don’t need the fhr. 4. Crown of Ages= This helm has wonderful mods on it. It has +1 skill, 10-15% dr, 30fhr, up to 20-30 resist all, and 1-2 sockets. If you can get past its huge strength requirement, this is a very good helm. Once again the 2 sockets provide great versatility. Like the two socketed circs, some people like to keep more than one to accomodate for something they need. BerBer, VexVex, LoLo Crown of Ages can be kept in the stash and equipped when required. 5. 08 Valk Helm= While a valk is usually a very good helm for most builds, it is nothing particularly amazing for a bone nec. I would only use this if you absolutely need the 10% extra fcr this helm provides. This provides some room to swap out some fcr items. It's also a good source for FHR. If you're having trouble with a block setup to hit 86fhr, use a 08 valk with a Shael. 50% is very helpful especially since you cannot get 55%fhr from a spirit shield. 5c. Armor 1. Enigma= This will be your only armor choice. This armor provides a ton of strength to allow you to maintain base strength. It also has +2 skills, life, and the all important +1 to teleport. You should try to make it into a low strength armor to keep strength at minimum. 5d. Belt 1. Arachnid Mesh= +1 skill, 20fcr, +5% mana. This belt provides just about everything short of some resists or fhr. It’s very good for the fcr it provides and the +1 skill increases damage and gives a higher battle order. 2. Verdungos= If you don’t need fcr from a belt, this will be your next first choice. 15% dr, up to 40vit, 10fhr, and some life replenish. 3. Crafted fcr belt = These belts can potentially come with 24fhr, +strength, +life, +mana, and most importantly 5-10% fcr. If you don’t need the extra 10fcr from arachnid, use this. This belt is an excellent source for fhr. 5e. Boots 1. Classic rares = Any of the classic rares that have 20fhr / stats / resists. These are probably the first choice for boots since necros generally have awful resistances, you'll need the tri-resist. Of course, 10fhr / dex / tri-res boots from patch 1.11 work fine too. 2. Waterwalks = Provided you don’t need fhr on boots, these boots are very good for the amount of life they have. I think these are the best boots in the game to be honest. Shame it doesn't have FHR. 3. Treks= 20FHR is your friend here. 5f. Gloves 2. Trang’s Gloves = These are better than magefists imo. They have more cold resist for the much needed cold stack, and the same 20%fcr. However, it does not have the mana regen. This isn’t too bad since like I said earlier, drinking mana pots is no longer considered BM. 3. Bloodfists= Use these gloves if you don’t need the fcr from the glove slot. They are a very good source for fhr and the 40 life is BO’able. 5g. Rings 1. 10%fcr rings= Try to get good ones with life/mana/resist/stats etc. These rings are excellent ways to hit that 125% fcr breakpoint. 2. Bul Kathos Ring= +1 skill and some life per character level. Only downside is that the life on these rings are not BO’able. 3. Soj= +1 skill and a nice boost to mana. If you are 1v1'ing mana is not too important. However, if you are in a team dueling context, the more mana you have the better. Use Sojs if you actively participate in team duels. 4. Nature’s Peace= The only mod you want on this ring is the oak charges. Oak provides more life and gives you another minion to stack. However, only use this if you can reach 125% fcr without this ring slot. 5h. Amulets 1. Crafted Caster Ammy= Can spawn with +2 nec / pnb 10-20%fcr and a whole bunch of other nice mods. A good caster amulet is your #1 choice. Look for +life, +strength, +dexterity, +resist all. 2. Rare ammy= These can also spawn with a slew of useful mods. Things to look out for are +skills, +life, +strength, +dexterity, +fcr, +resistance. 3. Maras Kaleidoscope= If fcr is not needed and you cannot get your hands on a nice crafted/rare ammy, Maras is the next best choice. +2 all skills can help your teleport mana, increase your damage, and increase your warcry levels. It also comes with 5 to all stats and nice resistance. 5i. Weapons 1. Heart of the Oak= +3 skills and oak sage charges are the two most important mods on a hoto. These two mods are the reasons why hoto should be your main weapon. 2. Wizardspike= Wizspike adds a lot of mana and provides a ton more resistance. It also has 10 more fcr and the one factor that allows wiz to compete with the hoto: a free socket. This socket can be used to make up for any shortcomings in your setup. (ie. Fhr, str, dex, resist) 3. Spirit Weapon= 55fhr is a lot and so this weapon should only be used if you wish to hit 86fhr or even the 152 fhr breakpoint. It lacks resistance but provides 22vit and a hefty amount of mana. Remember the fcr range for these are 25-35% fcr. 4. Suicide Branch= Just as good as a wizardspike except it has less resistance and provides less mana. It does however have +1 skill. It also has that free socket for you to slap a hot jewel into. The life this weapon provides is a lot after battle orders. If you are debating a wiz or suicide, unless you really need the resistance from wiz, use a suicide. 5. White Wand= The best white wand you could make would probably be a +8 bone spear / +6 bone spirit one. However, even a simple +8 bone spear white would be very effective. This weapon allows necros to do insane damage with bone spear. This is the #1 weapon versus casters. Remember if you wish to incorporate this weapon with a blocking shield, you’ll have to use a 08 valk to make up the difference you need in fcr.