The Book of the Dead belongs to the Necromancer as a class-exclusive skill in Diablo 4. It is used to summon minions and raise an army of the dead against Lilith and her armies of hell.
Unlocking the Book of the Dead is an easy task in Diablo 4. You automatically have access to the first group of skills at level 1, and can later unlock the other minion options over the course of your progression.
The Book of the Dead allows a Necromancer to summon three types of minions. These are more like three skeletal classes because each class further has three types of units to choose from, each featuring its own set of perks and attacks.
Do note that you can “sacrifice” any minions you have raised for bonuses. However, you will not be able to summon any more of that minion during the fight.
Skeleton Warriors are the primary minion of the Necromancer class in Diablo 4. They are positioned frontline and are used to fight with their target at a close range. They are known to possess different types of weapons which they use to deal damage to their targets.
Up to four Skeletal Warriors can be summoned by the Necromancer class at the same time.
Skirmisher Warriors are the first Skeletal minions you unlock as a Necromancer in Diablo 4. They wield swords to do damage but at the expense of a low-health pool. Your Skirmishers are not going to last long in battles but are perfect for a Necromancer critical strike build.
Upgrade 1: You can summon one more Skirmisher to boost your front lines.
Upgrade 2: Your critical strike damage increases by 50 percent but this can only occur once every 3 seconds.
Sacrifice: Your critical strike chance increases by 5 percent but at the expense of not being able to raise another Skirmisher.
As the name suggests, these Skeletal Warriors form your defensive lines in Diablo 4. Defenders come equipped with shields and can absorb a lot more damage than their other counterparts. However, that also means their damage output is pretty low.
Upgrade 1: This upgrade allows the Defenders to nullify the damage they take after every 6 seconds of the fight.
Upgrade 2: Gain an additional 50% of the number of Thorns from your side.
Sacrifice: You receive an additional 15% Non -Physical Resistance but at the expense of not being able to raise a Skirmisher.
A scythe-wielding Skeletal Warrior minion. Reapers are incredibly unique with their arsenal of attacks. They provide you with high-windup attacks which they perform after every 10 seconds of the fight.
Regardless of not having damage outputs equivalent to the likes of Defenders and Skirmishers, they are still known to cause a lot of damage to opponents.
Upgrade 1: Receive a 2-second increase in cooldown for attacking immobilized, slowed, stunned, or vulnerable enemies
Upgrade 2: Gain a 15% chance of attacking the enemy and turning them into corpses.
Sacrifice: You receive an additional 15% Shadow Damage but at the expense of not being able to raise a Skirmisher.
The Skeletal Mages is the second category you can unlock in Necromancer Book of the Dead by reaching level 15 in Diablo 4. These minions are your go-to choice if you are looking forward to dealing Shadow damage to opponents.
You can choose from three different Skeletal Mages in Diablo 4. Although they have their own skills to focus on, they all are considered to be the best option for a high-damage build.
Shadow Mages are the first Sleketal Mage you will play as in Diablo 4. They are considered to be the best option for a moderate damage build without the need of resummoning often.
They are arguably the number one pick from the class of Necromancers if you are considering making the most out of their Shadow damage ability.
Upgrade 1: Receive an additional 10% chance of stunning the target for the next 2 seconds. However, cannot apply to the same target more than once every 5 seconds.
Upgrade 2: Allows you to fire an additional fire build after every 5th attack.
Sacrifice: You receive an additional 15% Max Essence but at the expense of not being able to raise a Skeletal Mage.
Cold Mages are easily one of the most popular summons of the Necromancer class right now in Diablo 4. These units give you a ton of crowd control and increase your survival chances by slowing and pinning down enemies.
Enemies attacked by Cold Skeletal Mages are going to be “chilled” which means that they are going to be sapped of their mobility and attack speed. Chilled enemies have a high chance of freezing if they continue to be targeted by Cold Mages.
Upgrade 1: Receive an additional 2 Essence by using your primary attacks.
Upgrade 2: Enemies damaged by your primary attack will become vulnerable for the next 4 seconds.
Sacrifice: You can deal an additional 15% damage to the target but at the expense of not being able to raise a Skeletal Mage.
Bone is a polarizing Skeletal Mage in Diablo 4. Although they focus on dealing heavy damage to their opponents, they still manage to drain their own life due to using their bones as a projectile weapon.
They are recommended for Skeletal Mage if you are using a Blood Necromancer due to the additional increase you receive to your Overpower damage.
Upgrade 1:Receive a 10% decrease in the Life cost of Bone Mage’s attacks. Deal 40% more damage after being alive for more than 5 seconds.
Upgrade 2: Receive an additional 11% Fortify after a Bone Mage dies due to its own attack.
Sacrifice: You can deal an additional 40% Overpower damage but at the expense of not being able to raise a Skeletal Mage.
The final Necromancer minion in Diablo 4. Golems are arguably the heaviest Necromancer minions out of the three and they possess the tankiest damage output.
With each Golem having its own special ability, you will deal close range, AoE, and Critical Strike damage to the opponents during the battle.
The Bone Golems are considered an enemy gatherer minion group. They are best used to taunt the enemy as they lure them toward an upcoming AoE attack.
They will take a 30% reduced damage for 6 seconds, making them an amazing Golem to start your battle with.
Upgrade 1: Receive a corpse at the expense of a 20% decrease in Bone Golems Max health.
Upgrade 2: Receive 50% Thorne value along with a 10% max HP output
Sacrifice: You can deal an additional 10% Attack Speed but at the expense of not being able to raise a Golem.
The Blood Golem is used to assist you as a tank by draining the blood out of the enemies nearby. Doing so, this Golem will receive an additional 5% health upon each opponent it drains along with a 90% damage output.
If you are a Blood Necromancer who is having a hard time with its health, then Blood Golem is perhaps the best option for your build.
Upgrade 1: Intakes 15% damage you receive.
Upgrade 2: Receive 50% increased damage along with a 25% damage reduction.
Sacrifice: You can deal an additional 10% Max Life but at the expense of not being able to raise a Golem.
Iron is the last Golem you will unlock. Also, it is the hardest hitter of the three types. They will slam their hands into the ground to create a shockwave that deals 1755 damage to any nearby enemy while stunning them in the process.
Iron will provide you with AoE damage and is used best for a Bone Necromancer that focuses on Critical Strike Damage.
Upgrade 1: Create a shockwave after every 5th attack.
Upgrade 2: Make enemies vulnerable for 3 seconds by slamming fists into the ground.
Sacrifice: You can deal an additional 30% Increased Critical Damage but at the expense of not being able to raise a Golem.
How to upgrade Necromancer minions in Diablo 4
To upgrade each Necromancer minion in Diablo 4, you must head over to the upgrade menu of the selected minion. You will start off with the Skeletal Warrior type during your initial stages at a lower-level Necromancer.
However, as you progress, you can summon other types as well. Simply select a minion type such as Skeletal Warriors and open the menu page that consists of all the sub-categories of the Skeletal Warriors type.
You are only allowed to choose one sub-category at a time but can respec afterward. Next to the sub-category of Necromancer will be three options that include both a Sacrifice and an Upgrade option.
While the Upgrade options provide your minions with an additional bonus upon being used, the Sacrifice option provides you with an additional bonus by getting rid of your minions from the battle.