Necromancer, 3rd Variant (5e Class)

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The Necromancer[edit]

A master of life and death can be a wonderful companion or a terrible enemy.

Mastery Over Life and Death[edit]

A gang of orcs approach a small elf, moments later the elf walks away unscathed with wraiths trailing close behind. A bone-clad dragonborn marches on the capital of a major empire accompanied by hordes of undead, they never stood a chance against his army. A sickly gnome retreats to the shadows followed by a dwarven hunting party, the gnome begs for its life and touches one of the party members, the dwarf falls paralyzed while ghouls emerge from the shadows to handle the rest. This is the power of a necromancer: mastery over life and death.

Creating a Necromancer[edit]

Quick Build

You can make a Necromancer quickly by following these suggestions. First, Intelligence should be your highest ability score, followed by Constiution. Second, choose the Inheritor background as featured in the Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Third, choose the component pouch and the hand crossbow.

Class Features

As a Necromancer you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d6 per Necromancer level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 6 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d6 (or 4) + Constitution modifier per Necromancer level after 1st


Armor: Light Armor, Shields
Weapons: Martial Weapons, Simple Weapons
Tools: Disguise Kit
Saving Throws: Constitution & Intelligence
Skills: Choose Two From Deception, Survival, Arcana, Religion, Perception, Stealth, and Medicine


You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • (a) Component Pouch or (b) Arcane Focus
  • Spellbook
  • Any one martial or simple weapon
  • Hand Crossbow
  • (a) Explorer's Pack or (b) Scholar's Pack
  • If you are using starting wealth, you have 15gp in funds.

Table: The Necromancer

Level Proficiency
Features Cantrips Known —Spell Slots per Spell Level—
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st +2 Undead Affinity, Necromantic Dispositions 3 2
2nd +2 3 3
3rd +2 Necromantic Dispositions Feature 3 4 2
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement 4 4 3
5th +3 Wrest Undeath 4 4 3 2
6th +3 Necromantic Dispositions Feature 4 4 3 3
7th +3 Animate Major Undead 4 4 3 3 1
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement, Unholy Regeneration 4 4 3 3 2
9th +4 4 4 3 3 3 1
10th +4 Necromantic Dispositions Feature, Soul Siphon 5 4 3 3 3 2
11th +4 Soul Siphon 5 4 3 3 3 2 1
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement 5 4 3 3 3 2 1
13th +5 Animate Major Undead, Soul Siphon Improvement 5 4 3 3 3 2 1 1
14th +5 Necromantic Dispositions Feature 5 4 3 3 3 2 1 1
15th +5 Animate Major Undead Improvement 5 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement, Dark Artist 5 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
17th +6 Necromantic Dispositions Feature, Soul Siphon Improvement 5 4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 1
18th +6 5 4 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement, Animate Major Undead Improvement 5 4 3 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
20th +6 Invincible Resurrectionist 5 4 3 3 3 3 2 2 1 1


As a student of arcane magic, you have a spellbook containing spells that show the first glimmerings of your true power.


At 1st level, you know three cantrips of your choice from the Necromancer, Wizard, or Cleric spell list. You learn additional necromancer cantrips of your choice at higher levels, as shown in the Cantrips Known column of the Necromancer table.


At 1st level, you have a spellbook containing six 1st-level necromancer spells of your choice. Your spellbook is the repository of the necromancer spells you know, except your cantrips, which are fixed in your mind. leveling up you are allowed to simply choose two spells from the necromancer spell list

Preparing and Casting Spells

The Necromancer table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell's level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest. You prepare the list of necromancer spells that are available for you to cast. To do so, choose a number of necromancer spells from your spellbook equal to your Intelligence modifier + your necromancer level (minimum of one spell). The spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots. For example, if you're a 3rd-level necromancer, you have four 1st-level and two 2nd-level spell slots. With an Intelligence of 16, your list of prepared spells can include six spells of 1st or 2nd level, in any combination, chosen from your spellbook. If you prepare the 1st-level spell magic missile, you can cast it using a 1st-level or a 2nd-level slot. Casting the spell doesn't remove it from your list of prepared spells. You can change your list of prepared spells when you finish a long rest. Preparing a new list of necromancer spells requires time spent studying your spellbook and memorizing the incantations and gestures you must make to cast the spell: at least 1 minute per spell level for each spell on your list.

Spellcasting Ability

Intelligence is your spellcasting ability for your necromancer spells. You use your Intelligence whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Intelligence modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a necromancer spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Ritual Casting

You can cast a necromancer spell as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag and you have the spell in your spellbook. You don’t need to have the spell prepared.

Expanded Spell List

Each subclass comes with a predetermined set of spells, this is your expanded spell list. Even if the spells in your expanded spell list are not Necromancer spells according to the original spell list, they are for you.

Spellcasting Focus

You can use an arcane focus as a spellcasting focus for your necromancer spells.

Learning Spells of 1st Level and Higher

Each time you gain a necromancer level, you can add two necromancer spells of your choice to your spellbook for free. Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots, as shown on the Necromancer table. On your adventures, you might find other spells that you can add to your spellbook.

Undead Affinity[edit]

At 1st level, undead see you as one of their own, and will not attack you unless you’ve attacked them first. You gain vulnerability to radiant, resistance to necrotic, darkvision up to 60ft(if you already possess darkvision then it increase up to 120 ft), and do not need to eat or sleep. However, you can still be put to sleep by magic(unless stated otherwise by racial feats), and gain the benefits of a long rest after 4 hours of inactivity instead of 8 once per day. Additionally, any radiant damage you deal instead becomes necrotic damage.

Necromantic Disposition[edit]

At 3rd level, you choose a path. Choose between the Death Baron, the War Lord, the Soul Master, or the Ghoul Caller. Your choice grants you features at 3rd level and again at 6th level, 10th level, 14th level, and 18th level.

Ability Score Increase[edit]

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Wrest Undeath[edit]

Beginning at 5th level, you may use your action to attempt to assert control over any undead you see within 60ft. The undead must be medium size or smaller. You can control a number of undead equal to your inteligence modifier + half your necromancer level. (minimum of 1). The DC for the command check is 10 + the accumulative CR of the undead you attempt to control. For the purposes of modifiers in this check, it is considered a ranged spell attack. You may use this a number of times a day equal to your intelligence modifier + your proficiency bonus. You may not attempt to command a creature with a higher CR than your level. You regain all the uses for this ability after a long rest.

Unholy Regeneration[edit]

Beginning at 8th level, when an undead creature you control dies you gain temporary hit points equal to the number of hit dice that creature had. These hit points can be transferred to undead under your power.

Soul Siphon[edit]

Beginning at 10th level, the necrotic energies of your grasp siphon energy from your enemies' life force whilst strengthening your own. As an action, you can make a melee spell attack against a living creature, dealing necrotic damage equal to 1d8 + your Intelligence modifier on a hit. You gain temporary hit points equal to the amount of necrotic damage dealt. If this feature kills the creature, you gain twice as many temporary hit points from using this feature. The damage dice increases by an additional when you reach 13th level (2d8) and 17th level (3d8). All temporary hit points gained using this feature, like unholy regeneration, can be bestowed to undead under your power. You may use this feature a number of times equal to your Intelligence modifier(minimum one) and you regain all uses of this feature at the end of a long rest.

Animate Major Undead[edit]

Beginning at 13th level, your pursuit of knowledge has led to uncover the secrets to mastering undead of all sizes. You can now raise any corpse that is Huge or smaller of a monstrosity, humanoid, or beast with a challenge rating of 3 or lower. It keeps its original abilities and attacks, but loses any resistances, immunities, legendary actions, senses it had and gains the immunities and vulnerabilities of its type, skeleton or zombie. You can issue mental commands to the creature as the animate dead spell. You can only control one major undead at a time. This feature functions as the spell animate dead except where otherwise noted. You may use this feature on an existing undead you control to reassert your control over it. You must finish a long rest before you can use this feature again. At level 15th, you may animate a monstrosity, humanoid or beast with a challenge rating of 6 or lower. At level 19th, you may animate a monstrosity, humanoid or beast with a challenge rating of 9 or lower. In addition, a major undead now lasts until its hit points are reduced to 0.

Dark Artist[edit]

Beginning at 16th level, you've turned you mastery of the arcane into an art. Any time you would deal damage that isn't necrotic through a spell attack no higher than 3rd level you can choose to make it instead deal necrotic. You may use this feature a number of times equal to your intelligence modifier + your proficiency bonus. At 18th level this feature encompasses 6th level and lower as well as features that deal damage without the use of weapons or unarmed strikes. At 20th level this feature encompasses 9th level and lower and adds an additional damage die of a type that is already there.

Invincible Resurrectionist[edit]

Beginning at 20th level, undead under your power have resistence to all types of damage, and immunity to necrotic and poison damage. If one of the undead on your control dies or drops to 0 hp, you can use a bonus action to bring him back to full health. You can use this ability a number of times equal to your inteligence modifier, complete a long rest to restore the charges.

Necromantic Dispositions[edit]

War Lord[edit]

Why choose between quantity and quality when you can have both?

War Lord Expanded Spells
Spell Level Spells
1st Armor of Agathys, Bane
2nd Find Steed, Crown of Madness
3rd Animate Dead, Bestow Curse
4th Blight, Faithful Hound
5th Circle of Power, Contagion
Horde Acquisition

Beginning at 3rd level, any medium humanoid creature you kill with necrotic energy becomes a zombie. You must use your wrest undeath feature if you wish to command the resulting zombie.

Tactical Horde

Beginning at 3rd level, zombies and skeletons under your control have advantage on attack rolls if another allied zombie or skeleton is within 5ft and isn't incapacitated.

Building an Army

Beginning at 6th level, when you cast a spell which creates a zombie or skeleton you may choose an additional corpse or pile of bones nearby and reanimate that as well.

Might of the Grave

Beginning at 10th level, you begin to mold your bone structure to better suit your needs. You may choose one of three choices:

  • You begin to create a sort of exoskeleton giving yourself a +2 to AC.
  • You grow spikes from your skin preventing close combat, as a reaction you can deal 2d4 piercing damage to a creature when you are dealt melee damage in combat.
  • You increase your bone density in such a way that you are considered a size larger for the purposes of checks based on size like grappling.
Army of the Damned

At 14th level, undead you control gain a proficiency with one armor type and one weapon, additionally they receive the ability to cast a first level spell from your list of known spells which has a cooldown of 1d10 rounds.

A Big Mistake

Beginning at 17th level you can create a force to be reckoned with by sacrificing a 7th level spell slot and 75 hit points. You may resurrect up to 12 Zombies or Skeletons, DM's choice, which have their own initiative order and they follow your commands for up to 5 minutes without costing any accumulated CR for your Wrest Undeath feature. After 5 minutes you must use your Wrest Undeath feature if you wish to continue controlling the undead created by this feature at which point they count normally for Wrest Undeath.

Death Baron[edit]

A Death Baron is as much a master over life as they are over death.

Death Baron Expanded Spells
Spell Level Spells
1st Cure Wounds, False Life, Healing Word
2nd Aid, Lesser Restoration
3rd Aura of Vitality, Vampiric Touch, Mass Healing Word
4th Aura of Life, Death Ward
5th Raise Dead, Greater Restoration
Accursed Healer

Starting at 3rd level, your spells are more effective. Whenever you use a spell of 1st level or higher to deal necrotic damage to a creature, an ally of your choice regains additional Hit Points equal to 2 + the spell’s level.

Not Your Time

Starting at 3rd level, you can use your dark power to heal the badly injured. As an action, you evoke necrotic energy that can restore a number of Hit Points equal to your proficiency bonus times your Necromancer level. Choose any creatures within 30 feet of you, and divide those Hit Points among them. This feature can restore a creature to no more than half of its hit point maximum, the pool of hit points used for this feature replenishes after a long rest. You can’t use this feature on an Undead or a construct.

Disciple of Death

Beginning at 6th level, the necrotic damage you deal to others can heal you. When you Cast a Spell of 1st level or higher that deals necrotic damage to a creature other than you, you regain Hit Points equal to 2 + the spell’s level.

Damning Strike

At 10th level, you gain the ability to infuse your magic with unholy energy. Once on each of your turns when you hit a creature with a spell attack, you can cause the attack to deal an extra 1d8 necrotic damage to the target. When you reach 14th level, the extra damage increases to 2d8.

Unnatural Healing

At 14th level, when you would normally roll one or more dice to restore Hit Points with a spell, you instead use the highest number possible for each die. For example, instead of restoring 2d6 Hit Points to a creature, you restore 12.

Death's Associate

Your mastery over life and death becomes unparalleled by any mortals, and you've peaked the interest of death himself. At 18th level, you may expend an 8th level spell slot and for the duration of 1 minute you can see how close to death everyone around you is, after the minute ends you may target one creature that is below 100 hp and the Grim Reaper will end their life.

Ghoul Caller[edit]

Ghouls and Ghasts are pretty badass, right?

Ghoul Caller Expanded Spells
Spell Level Spells
1st Snare, Detect Poison and Disease
2nd Find Traps, Spider Climb
3rd Feign Death, Hypnotic Pattern
4th Freedom of Movement, Shadow of Moil
5th Dispel Evil and Good, Enervation
Ghoulish Intent

Beginning at 3rd level, when you kill a monstrosity, humanoid or beast with necrotic damage, it becomes a ghoul, unless the creature you kill is of CR 3 or higher at which point it becomes a ghast. You must use your wrest undeath feature if you wish to command the resulting ghoul or ghast.

Smells Like Home

At 3rd level your nose becomes attuned to the disgusting smells of ghouls and ghasts and as such a ghast's stench effect no longer affects you.

Paralyzing touch

At 6th level, your hands spread the paralysis of death to the living. Make a melee spell attack against a creature within 5ft, on a hit the target must make a wisdom saving throw against your spell save DC. On a failed save takes 3d6 cold damage and is paralyzed for 1d4+1 rounds, on a successful save the target takes half damage and is not paralyzed. The target can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. You may use this feature a number of times per long rest equal to your intelligence modifier.

Ghastly Acceleration

At 10th level, you and your servants move faster than before. The movement speed for you and the ghouls and ghasts you control is increased by 10ft.

Becoming the Monster

Beginning at 14th level, you become more like your servants in every way. Your skin becomes a little more pale, you become thinner and lankier, and you gain advantage on dexterity based checks and saves.

Master's Calling

At 18th level, you may expend an 8th level spell slot and raise 10 ghouls and 4 ghasts.

Soul Master[edit]

For those of you that find zombies and skeletons to be overrated.

Soul Master Expanded Spells
Spell Level Spells
1st dissonant whispers, Unseen Servant
2nd Misty Step, Blur
3rd Spirit Guardians, Blink
4th Phantasmal Killer, Banishment
5th Reincarnate, Telekinesis

Beginning at 3rd level, when you kill a monstrosity, humanoid or beast with necrotic damage, it becomes an undead spirit of the GM's choice (ie a wraith, poltergeist, or a banshee). You must use your wrest undeath feature if you wish to command the resulting undead spirit.

Spiritual Lens

Beginning at 3rd level, you can see undead spirits that can't normally be seen by the naked eye. If an undead spirit would be invisible you can still see it unless it hides.

Incorporeal Advantage

Beginning at 6th level, you can move through other creatures and Objects as if they were difficult terrain. You take 1d10 force damage if you end your turn inside an object. Additionally an incorporeal creature cannot pass through you and you recieve advantage on attack rolls against undead spirits, the damage you deal to such creatures overrides resistances.

Spectral Tolerance

Beginning at 10th level, your ghostly physiology makes it harder to hurt you with a normal weapon. You gain resistance to non-magical bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.

Soul Food

Beginning at 14th level, you've discovered that the essence of a creature holds some of their knowledge from prior to death and extra vitality. you may consume the soul of a living creature within 5ft of you, the DC for this is 10 + the creature's remaining hit points and for the purposes of modifiers this is considered a ranged spell attack. You may also consume the soul of a creature that has died within 5 minutes. Upon consumption of a creature's soul many of the benefits such as skill proficiency is up to DM discretion, however you may regain a number of hit points equal to three times the number of hit dice the target creature (has/had).

Restless Soul

At 18th level, you've learned how to leave your flesh behind for a period of time. for a minute at a time you can project your soul, which for all intents and purposes has the stat block of a wraith, and leave your body behind. your body is treated as a corpse and the hit points of a normal wraith are added to your hit point total as temporary hit points. You return to your body after the minute ends, after you dispel this feature, or after the temporary hit points are depleted. You may use this feature a number of times equal to your intelligence modifier.

Necromancer Spell List[edit]

You can learn all of the spells on the basic Wizard spell list except any divination spells, as well as necromancy spells from the cleric spell list and the additional spells granted to you by your subclass.


Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Necromancer class or creating a Necromancer, you must meet these prerequisites: INT 13; CON 13

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Necromancer class, you gain the following proficiencies: Arcana, Glaive, and Disguise Kit

Variant Features[edit]

Scythe: Replace all instances of the word glaive in this class with the word scythe.

Indiscriminant Resurrection: A War Lord Necromancer may also resurrect non-medium non-humanoid creatures with the Horde Acquisition feature, but the GM must be prepared for and approve such events.

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