Necromancer Leveling Guide in Diablo 4

Obliterate and consume your enemies with Bone Spear and Corpse Explosion!




Minion Overlord

Updated: Posted:

Bone SplintersBone SpearCorpse ExplosionBlood MistSkeletal Warrior MasteryOssified Essence

Leveling as a Necromancer with Bone Spear and Corpse Explosion

The Bone SpearBone Spear Necromancer leveling build is a high damaging ranged build that brings high consistency to the battlefield, ensuring the damage output is kept high even when you’re building up your Essence to continue casting Bone Spears. This makes it an incredibly smooth build to level your Necromancer with!

Due to the high damage output, this build will take you from the start of the game all the way through the campaign with ease, as well as being capable of soloing the Cathedral of Light Capstone dungeon.

Solo play can be fun and playing with friends can be great, if you have the right spec! The high damage output makes the build very attractive to have in a party with friends, and it also makes enemies consistently Vulnerable, allowing the rest of your party to benefit immensely for having you with them.

If you are already level 50, you can check out any of our Endgame Necromancer builds.

Level 50/Endgame Blood Surge Necromancer Build Level 50/Endgame Sever Shadowmancer Build Level 50/Endgame Bone Spear Necromancer Build

Skill Tree Points

1Bone SplintersBone SplintersBasic SkillBasic Skill
2Enhanced Bone SplintersEnhanced Bone SplintersBasic SkillBasic Skill
3Blood SurgeBlood SurgeCore SkillCore Skill
4Blood SurgeBlood Surge Level 2Core SkillCore Skill
5Blood SurgeBlood Surge Level 3Core SkillCore Skill
6Blood SurgeBlood Surge Level 4Core SkillCore Skill
7Blood SurgeBlood Surge Level 5Core SkillCore Skill
8Corpse ExplosionCorpse ExplosionCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
9Enhanced Corpse ExplosionEnhanced Corpse ExplosionCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
10Hewed FleshHewed FleshCore SkillCore Skill
11Hewed FleshHewed Flesh Level 2Core SkillCore Skill
12Hewed FleshHewed Flesh Level 3Core SkillCore Skill
13Grim HarvestGrim HarvestCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
14Grim HarvestGrim Harvest Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
15Grim HarvestGrim Harvest Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill

At this point in your character progression it is optimal to move all your points in Blood SurgeBlood Surge over to Bone SpearBone Spear, as both are located in the Core cluster. This allows you to utilize Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion to clear any extra enemies the Bone Spear did not kill without forcing you to move into close range of your enemies.

16Enhanced Bone SpearEnhanced Bone SpearCore SkillCore Skill
17Supernatural Bone SpearSupernatural Bone SpearCore SkillCore Skill
18Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
19Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
20Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion Level 4Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
21Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion Level 5Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
22Skeletal Warrior MasterySkeletal Warrior MasteryCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
23Skeletal Warrior MasterySkeletal Warrior Mastery Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
24Skeletal Warrior MasterySkeletal Warrior Mastery Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
25Plagued Corpse ExplosionPlagued Corpse ExplosionCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
26SerrationSerrationCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
27SerrationSerration Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
28SerrationSerration Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
29Compound FractureCompound FractureCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
30EvulsionEvulsionCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
31EvulsionEvulsion Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
32Ossified EssenceOssified EssenceKey Passives
33EvulsionEvulsion Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
34Unliving EnergyUnliving EnergyCore SkillCore Skill
35Unliving EnergyUnliving Energy Level 2Core SkillCore Skill
36Unliving EnergyUnliving Energy Level 3Core SkillCore Skill
37Fueled by DeathFueled by DeathCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
38Fueled by DeathFueled by Death Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
39Fueled by DeathFueled by Death Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
40Blood MistBlood MistCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
41Compound FractureCompound Fracture Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
42Compound FractureCompound Fracture Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
43Imperfectly BalancedImperfectly BalancedCore SkillCore Skill
44Imperfectly BalancedImperfectly Balanced Level 2Core SkillCore Skill
45Imperfectly BalancedImperfectly Balanced Level 3Core SkillCore Skill
46DecrepifyDecrepifyCurse SkillCurse Skill
47Enhanced DecrepifyEnhanced DecrepifyCurse SkillCurse Skill
48Necrotic CarapaceNecrotic CarapaceCorpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
49Necrotic CarapaceNecrotic Carapace Level 2Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
50Necrotic CarapaceNecrotic Carapace Level 3Corpse & Macabre SkillCorpse & Macabre Skill
51Death's ReachDeath’s ReachCurse SkillCurse Skill
52Death's ReachDeath’s Reach Level 2Curse SkillCurse Skill
53Death's ReachDeath’s Reach Level 3Curse SkillCurse Skill
54Amplify DamageAmplify DamageCurse SkillCurse Skill
55Amplify DamageAmplify Damage Level 2Curse SkillCurse Skill
56Amplify DamageAmplify Damage Level 3Curse SkillCurse Skill
57DecrepifyDecrepify Level 2Curse SkillCurse Skill
58DecrepifyDecrepify Level 3Curse SkillCurse Skill

Mechanics and Playstyle

The build starts off with casting Blood SurgeBlood Surge as your main source of damage output coupled with Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion. This works very well, but does force you to position yourself close to the enemies. This is later solved by moving your points over to Bone SpearBone Spear which will be our main source of single-target damage. However, thanks to the combination of exploding corpses and the passive Grim HarvestGrim Harvest, we can easily use Bone Spear to kill initial enemies and finish the remaining mobs with our Corpse Explosion, building our Essence pool back and creating a very smooth playstyle and leveling experience.

When fighting bosses you essentially want to dump all your Essence by casting Bone SpearBone Spear. Thanks to your Reaper Skeletons providing corpses, as well as the passive Hewed FleshHewed Flesh, you should always have an abundant amount of corpses around your enemies to create a wave of explosions with Corpse ExplosionCorpse Explosion. Aside from re-summoning your skeletons if needed, this rotation rinses and repeats like clockwork!

Should you find yourself completely out of Essence and with no corpses, you’ll resort to using your Bone SplintersBone Splinters to create corpses and regain Essence.

Book of the Dead

Necromancer’s class specific ability is the Book of the Dead, which provides three different type of minions that unlock by leveling up. Some of these choices comes down to personal preference, so we will outline our preferred setup for leveling this build.

  • Melee Skeletons – We’ll want to run the Reapers. The second effect choice from these bad boys allows them to have a 15% chance to create a corpse on hit. Seeing as our build thrives on both damage output and Essence gain from corpses this is the ideal choice.
  • Mage Skeletons – In the early leveling process, you can choose to run the Cold version of the Mage Skeletons to regain Essence on Hit. We are not aiming to invest anything to have them survive long term, as this would cause them to take up more time being resummoned rather than providing something beneficial for your build. Our choice here is to sacrifice them as Cold Skeletons, providing us with extra damage against Vulnerable enemies.
  • Golem – When you first gain access to the Golem, we would strongly recommend using him as an actual tank. The Golem doesn’t go down easily and helps taunt enemies, enabling you to safely do damage from a distance. Use either the Bone Golem, which provides corpses when the summon takes a certain amount of damage, or the Blood Golem, which redirects a portion of the damage you take yourself, as both are great choices during this time frame. Towards the end of the campaign we would opt for sacrificing the Iron Golem, which provides Necromancer with extra Critical Strike Damage.

Legendary Aspects and Codex of Power

There is really only one Legendary Aspect that is truly powerful and worth mentioning for this build, which is the Splintering AspectSplintering Aspect, unlocked by completing the Guulrahn Slums dungeon in Act 3, Dry Steppes.

This legendary power allows us to make enemies Vulnerable, which in turn allows us to remove the Supernatural Bone SpearSupernatural Bone Spear and change it into Paranormal Bone SpearParanormal Bone Spear. Most importantly, we are now able to make large groups of enemies all reliably become Vulnerable.

As you level up the build, you will want to keep this power and at the same time allow yourself to freely equip upgrades as you find them. Weapons are the biggest source of our damage output, and this is why we do NOT recommend putting your power there. The power is there more for the effect rather than the increased damage it also provides. Instead of putting it on weapons, we recommend strongly that you apply this to one of your Rings; this will allow you to have more free room to equip upgrades (in case of a great Ring drop, you can replace the Ring without the Aspect) without wasting precious materials re-applying the Aspect every time you find an upgrade.

It’s also very important to note that as you gain higher item level items, they will become more expensive to apply these powers to!

Gear Choice and Stat Priority while Leveling

Prioritize a higher total damage output when it comes to your weapon, as the higher it is, the better. It should be kept in mind that if you find a higher Item Power 1-handed weapon that it could very well be better than a 2-handed weapon if coupled with an off-hand or even a shield, as shields scale your main-hand weapon by 80%!

Outside of this, you’ll be on the look out for the following modifiers, in no particular order:

  • Damage against Vulnerable Targets;
  • Damage against Distant targets;
  • Critical Strike Damage;
  • Lucky Hit Chance, which is very effective as this helps generate more corpses to keep the rotation of Bone Spears & Corpse Explosion going.


Listed below are the best Gems to socket into gear for each slot type.

  • Weapon: Emerald for +#% Critical Strike Damage to Vulnerable Enemies.
  • Armor: Ruby for +#% Maximum Life.
  • Jewelry: Diamond for all Resistance or any gem that provides you with the resistance type you lack the most.

Elixirs and Health Potions

To gain an edge in your adventures, head to the Alchemist in Kyovashad and craft Elixirs that enhance your stats and experience gain for 30 minutes. Remember to gather the necessary crafting materials by foraging plants. Select an Elixir that provides the resistance you need most, or try the Weak Assault Elixir to boost your Attack Speed by 7%.

Return to the Alchemist again when you reach level 20 and 30 to upgrade your potion. The extra healing is essential to survival.