The Necromancer is one of the most popular classes in Diablo 4, and has been widely regarded as an overpowered and flexible class in early stages of the game. Prior to Server Slam last weekend, Blizzard nerfed the Necromancer several times, leading some players to question whether the ongoing balance shifts will find a sweet spot before the game's official June release.
What Were the Necromancer Nerfs?
For Server Slam, Blizzard nerfed the Necromancer in several ways, mostly reducing damage output and survivability of minions. These nerfs include:
- Summoned Minions will die more often, requiring players to utilize Corpses more often.
- Many bonuses in the Book of the Dead have had their stats increased.
- The damage dealt by the Corpse Explosion skill has been reduced.
- The brightness of the Skeletal Warriors and Mages has been reduced.
However, most players reacted by saying the nerfs had gone too far, and Necromancer was no longer viable.
Are the Nerfs Too Much?
Although it's clear that Necromancer needed rebalancing, it's equally clear that players are reasonably unhappy with the resulting balance.
Rod Fergusson, the GM of Diablo at Blizzard, has been actively reassuring players that the Necromancer balances have not been finalized, and that some of them will be walked back.
We expect these changes to really focus on the survivability of Necromancer summonables.
That would likely force Necromancer players to strike a balance where they may have more room for error on positioning during fights, but would still need to work around less forgiving cooldowns. Keeping minions alive during combat has never been as important for Necromancer players.
It's clear that Necromancer will continue to need balancing as Blizzard approaches Diablo 4's official launch. Given the confusion, it's even reasonable to expect hotfixes in the first few weeks of the game.
The Necromancer is a powerful class. With a little bit of strategy and patience, you can still be successful with this class (even with its relatively weakened current state).
Just remember to use your minions to your advantage, and be careful when fighting enemies. With a little bit of practice, you'll be able to master the Necromancer and become a force to be reckoned with.