“Adept Necromancer”

Table of Contents


Welcome to the Magicka Necromancer Beginner Build PvE “Adept Necromancer”. This build is balanced for 160 Champion Points. It should be your next step to work on this setup after completing the Magicka Necromancer Beginner Guide. The focus on this setup will be to get you ready for veteran dungeons with basic gear and to make sure that you have enough sustain and good survivability. With this setup you can start farming your gear for the end game Trial & Dungeon Builds on this website.

It will also explain some more advanced game mechanics which you don’t have to master right away, but should be aware of with your Magicka Necromancer.

If you have more questions, you can also ask someone in our community partner discord about this Magicka Necromancer Beginner Guide.

  • Basic Gear Setup
  • 160 Champion Points
  • Good Sustain
  • Good Survivability
  • How to play Magicka Necromancer

Major Prophecy was active during this screenshot, as well as all the suggested passives.

Resource Management

Resource management is one of the most important things for all builds, you need to learn how to be able to sustain yourself. I will mention a few tricks in this section of the guide. In general, you should make sure that you have around 1600-1800 magicka recovery fully buffed with a magicka potion active (Magicka potions give you Major Intellect, increasing Magicka Recovery by 20%).

Witchmother’s Potent Brew Drink

This drink is one of the key things that Magicka setups use to increase magicka recovery and thus their sustain. It gives max health, max magicka and magicka recovery as stats. You can obtain this for a quite cheap price in most guild stores. Always make sure that you have this drink active. It scales with your level, so you can even use this while you are low level.

Food buff

Heavy Attacks

Heavy attacks restore a huge amount of resources when you successfully hit the target. Make sure to do a heavy attack from time to time when you drop low on magicka. It is worth noting that when an enemy is off balanced, you will get twice the amount of magicka back from a heavy attack.

Absorb Magic Enchantment

Using an Absorb Magic Enchantment on our frontbar will also increase sustain. Every time the magic damage enchantment damages an enemy, we also get a small chunk of magicka back.

Magicka Recovery Glyphs (optional)

I do recommend running one magicka recovery glyph on your jewelry, if you want you can also use a second one if you still think your sustain is too low.

Gear Setup CP 160

Here you will find three basic Beginner Setups. As soon as you hit CP 160 it would be good if you get a Monster Set, the headpiece is a guaranteed drop when you finish a veteran dungeon, in our case Crypt of Hearts 1 for Ilambris Monster Set. It is one of the easier dungeons to complete in veteran mode. If you do not have a Monster Set yet, just use some random gear pieces there.

Shoulders drop from the reward chests at each of the Undaunted Mettle enclaves in every major city of the base game. Depending on where the monster sets drop, it also drops from the chest from whom you received the quest.

  • I will also explain down below what other sets that you should start farming, sets that can always be handy to have somewhere in the bank.
  • We are using a 5 Light, 1 Heavy, 1 Medium setup because of the undaunted passive that you want to unlock as fast as possible, so you receive 6% more overall resources (Magicka, Health, Stamina).

Beginner Setup 1

This would be the ideal setup, but it takes some time and requires you to spend some time farming dungeons.
Divines would be ideal for the body pieces, but you can take any trait for now.

ChestShroud of the LichLightAny TraitHealth
BeltShroud of the LichLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoesShroud of the LichLightAny TraitMagicka
PantsShroud of the LichLightAny TraitHealth
HandsShroud of the LichLightAny TraitMagicka
HeadMonster SetMediumAny TraitHealth
ShoulderMonster SetHeavyAny TraitMagicka
NecklaceMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneMagicka Recovery
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
RingMother's SorrowJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
Weapon 1Mother's SorrowFirePreciseAbsorb Magic Enchant
Weapon 2Mother's SorrowFireInfusedWeapon Damage Enchant

Beginner Setup 2

This setup is without a Monster Set, but requires you to either know someone that can craft this, or have the spare money to buy these parts in a guild store.

ChestLaw of JulianosHeavyAny TraitHealth
BeltLaw of JulianosLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoesMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
PantsLaw of JulianosMediumAny TraitMagicka
HandsMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
HeadMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoulderMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
NecklaceWillpowerJewelryArcaneMagicka Recovery
RingWillpowerJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
RingWillpowerJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
Weapon 1Law of JulianosFireAny Trait/ PreciseAbsorb Magic Enchant
Weapon 2Law of JulianosFireAny Trait/ InfusedWeapon Damage Enchant

If you want to farm it yourself

This one is without a Monster Set and you can find all these pieces in Overland content

ChestMother's SorrowLightAny TraitHealth
BeltMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoesMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
PantsMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
HandsMother's SorrowLightAny TraitMagicka
HeadSkooma SmugglerLightAny TraitMagicka
ShoulderSkooma SmugglerLightAny TraitMagicka
NecklaceBloodthorn's TouchJewelryArcaneMagicka Recovery
RingBloodthorn's TouchJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
RingBloodthorn's TouchJewelryArcaneSpell Dmg
Weapon 1Bloodthorn's TouchFireAny Trait/ PreciseAbsorb Magic Enchant
Weapon 2Bloodthorn's TouchFireAny Trait/ InfusedWeapon Damage Enchant

 Where can I get the gear?

Law of Julianos: Craftable
Willpower: Guildstore
Armor of the Seducer: Glenumbra, Guildstore
Mother’s Sorrow: Deshaan, Guildstore
Shroud of the Lich: Crypt of Hearts I & II
Bloodthorn's Touch: Glenumbra, Guildstore
Skooma Smuggler: Reaper’s March, Guildstore

Monster Sets (Recommended)

Ilambris: Crypt of Hearts 1 (Head), Undaunted Pledges (Shoulder, Glirion treasure chest)
Grothdarr: Vaults of Madness (Head), Undaunted Pledges (Shoulder, Glirion treasure chest)

Sets that you should also farm

In addition to the basic setup that is listed up there you should also farm some other sets that you will need sooner or later.

Ilambris Monster Set

Ilambris is the most popular Monster Set for Magicka Nightblade setups that isn’t locked behind a DLC. It provides a lot of extra magicka and fire and shock damage. It works for both Single Target and AoE (Area of Effect) damage, which is very handy.

Grothdarr Monster Set

Grothdarr is a very good alternative to Ilambris, as the AoE effect of it moves together with you. But you also have to stand close to the targets in order for the Monster Set to have an effect!

False God’s Devotion Trial Set

False God's Devotion is currently the best Trial Set that you can get from normal trials, but it requires you to have the newest chapter, Elsweyr. You can wear this instead of Burning Spellweave in the Gear Setup 1.

If you want to find more sets that you can use more towards late game you can also check out the full list of recommended Magicka DPS sets.


This skill layout will be very close to the normal skill setup that we use in endgame builds like the Magicka Necromancer Curse Build. You might not have all the necessary skills yet, but I suggest that you start working on obtaining those specific skills as soon as possible.

You want to make sure to have enough corpses on the ground for specific abilities.

Mystic Siphon Skeletal Arcanist Ricochet Skull Stalking Blastbones Degeneration Shooting Star
Unstable Wall of Elements Unnerving Boneyard Harness Magicka Hungry Scythe Necrotic Potency Glacial Colossus
Fire Staff MainbarFire Staff bar
Slot 1: Mystic SiphonSlot 1: Unstable Wall of Elements
Slot 2: Skeletal ArcanistSlot 2: Unnerving Boneyard
Slot 3: Ricochet SkullSlot 3: Harness Magicka
Slot 4: Stalking BlastbonesSlot 4: Hungry Scythe
Slot 5: DegenerationSlot 5: Necrotic Potency
Ultimate: Shooting StarUltimate: Glacial Colossus

Hungry Scythe will not be part of your rotation. It is a healing skill and you only need it when you don’t have a healer in your group or you are alone. However, you can use it against multiple targets!

Skills Explanation

  • Mystic Siphon: Deals good damage and restores 2844 Magicka over 12 seconds while siphoning a corpse. This ability needs a corpse to be activated.
  • Skeletal Arcanist: This should be active at all times and when there is no corpse nearby, when the skill ends, it will create one, meaning you can use it for your skills that require this. It give you the 300 extra Magicka Recovery from the Undead Confederate passive and the extra 1500 Spell Penetration from the Dismember passive.
  • Ricochet Skull: This is your main spammable ability (a skill that you can cast multiple times). Every third cast deals 20% more damage.
  • Stalking Blastbones: This is a strong single target and AoE ability which also provides a corpse for your other abilities. It is your main source of corpses.
  • Inner Light: Increases your total Max Magicka by 7%, 5% from the skill and another 2% from the Magicka Controller passive.
  • Shooting Star: Increases your Max Magicka by 2% due to the Magicka Controller passive.
  • Unstable Wall of Fire: This needs to be on the ground all the times as it deals a lot of damage with a strong explosion.
  • Unnerving Boneyard: Deals really good AoE damage, make sure that you activate this ability while a corpse is on the ground to get the 20% damage boost!
  • Harness Magicka: If you receive a lot of damage and don’t receive no or not much healing, this will be your main protection.
  • Hungry Scythe: This can be a very strong self-heal, especially when used on multiple targets. It is not going to be a part of your rotation, but should instead be used if you have no healer in your group.
  • Glacial Colossus: Can be activated to deal a lot of damage and apply Major Vulnerability to the enemy for a short duration.
  • Necrotic Potency: Additionally to healing you, this skill will help you in gaining more Ultimate. So it makes for a good supportive skill!

Skill lines you have to work on

You want to make sure to max out all the following Skill lines and grind up all the skills and morphs of:

All Necromancer Class Skill-lines

Destruction Staff

Light Armor

Heavy Armor (Because of Juggernaut passive)

Mages Guild

Fighters Guild

Undaunted (Passives only)

Psijic Order (optional)

Provisioning (Gourmand & Connoisseur)

Alchemy (Medicinal Use)

Yes, that is a lot of skill lines, it will take a fair bit of time to completely level up all of those, but it will be worth it. If you want more information about each of the skill lines, make sure to visit ESO-Skillbook.com. The website has all the skill lines up to date for Elder Scrolls Online.

Champion Points [160]

Why do we want Champion Points anyway? What’s the big deal?
If you read through the bonuses of the Champion Points you will notice that they either boost your DPS, help you in defending yourself, or in managing your resources. This might seem small in the beginning, but it will increase by a lot and will make your character very powerful.  It all probably doesn’t make much sense in the beginning, but it is one of the many aspects as to why maximum CP characters have a much easier time at the game.

If you need optimized defensive Champion Points for a specific trial I recommend checking out the Maximize Damage Mitigation in Trials Article.

In case you need help distributing your Champion Points, make sure to check out the Champion Points Calculator!

The Mage

Thaumaturge: 9 points
Elemental Expert:
15 points
9 points
Spell Erosion:
7 points
Master at Arms:
8 points
Staff Expert:
5 points

The Thief

Warlord: 9 points
15 points
Tenacity: 15 points
7 points
Shadow Ward: 7

The Warrior

Thick Skinned: 9 points
Elemental Defender:
15 points
15 points
Spell Shield:
7 points
Iron Clad:
8 points

Important Info for Magicka Necromancer Beginner Build PvE


Witchmother’s Potent Brew (Max Health, Max Magicka, Magicka Recovery)

Food buff

This Drink is scaling with your level, so you can continue using it while leveling up!

Mundus Stone

The Lover (Increased Spell Penetration)




You can use those potions, they drop from Monsters, so you should have plenty of them. You can also buy those potions in the guildstore, they are very cheap.

Magicka sorcerer beginner build


In the end you want to have all these passives active with this build:


In case you don’t know what what weaving light attacks is, make sure to check out the “Weaving Beginner Guide” which explains how to weave light attacks between abilities, aka animation canceling.

Magicka Necromancers can be played in two different ways, with a static and a dynamic rotation, but the static rotation is much easier to start with.

Unstable Wall of Elements > Light Attack > Unnerving Boneyard > Light Attack > Weapon Swap
Light Attack > Blastbones > Light Attack > Skeletal Mage > Light Attack > Ricochet Skull > Light Attack > Blastbones > Light Attack > Mystic Siphon > Light Attack > Ricochet Skull > Light Attack > Degeneration > Light Attack > Weapon Swap

  • Only use Hungry Scythe when you are in need of a heal or need an AoE dmg skill
  • Use the Colossus Ultimate whenever it is ready
  • Try to do Light Attacks between each ability


So, what do you need to do?

Aside from farming gear, you will also need to level skill lines. If you haven’t yet maxed your class skill lines, now would be a good time.
Also, you will need to maximize Mage’s Guild, Fighter’s Guild, Undaunted and if you have the DLC it would be best if you get the Psijic Skill line, as you will need that for future builds.
For Mage’s Guild you will need to either do their Daily Quest, or go search lorebooks, for Fighter’s Guild you need to do their Daily Quest or kill Daedra and Undead. For Undaunted you need to complete dungeon achievements or do the Daily Quests at the Undaunted Enclave in the major cities. For the Psijic Skill line you need to start the Summerset Main Quest until the point you get to Arteum and then do a questline from Loremaster Celarus until Level 10.

If you want to know more, you can check out the Fighters Guild, Mages Guild and Undaunted Video.

You really should start with Undaunted as soon as possible, which is usually Level 45. You will receive keys for every Pledge which in turn will grant you access to receive the Monster Shoulder pieces.

Gear is the most important thing that you can get now and if you don’t want to spend hundreds of Transmutation Crystals on transmuting your gear, you will want them in the ideal trait. This can take a while.

If you want to deal the most damage possible, you will want to consider learning everything about weaving. Especially with Nightblades, Light Attack weaving is essential. It basically means that you cancel the Light Attack animation with a skill. In theory you make a Light Attack and then almost immediately afterwards you cast a skill. Since this is depending on your latency, it will take you some time to figure out when exactly this “almost immediately” is. In a future guide this will be explained more detailed.

You might also want to get involved with guilds, in order to get easier and more regular access to trials (especially for veteran trials later on), crafters and even a guild store. Since you can have up to 5 guilds, no guild needs to fulfill every requirement. You can even have a guild for just chatting. Still, having a guild for each purpose is a good idea and will cover all your bases.

Getting Skill Points are also very important, depending how thorough you were with Skyshards, quests and dungeons.
Leveling a character is more than just reaching Level 50 and oftentimes requires you to get more than by just grinding your way up, which is why grinding levels as a beginner is usually a bad idea.
If you should find yourself in need of more skill points I suggest you complete the group events of the Public Dungeons that you can find in ESO. If you need help in finding out where to get skill points and which you are still missing, try out Urich’s Skill Point Finder!

Another important thing is Crafting. Sure, depending on how social you are, you can always find someone to craft you gear, or depending on how skilled you are at earning gold you can also just buy what you need, but the true power and also getting rich in-game is by learning how to craft, and learning all the traits. You might sometimes hear people saying how important it is to do you writs and it is true, it is easy money and gets you a lot resources.

The only thing it requires though is for you to not throw away what you loot and of course most ideal would be if you had the endless crafting bag of ESO Plus, but you can also get around that by storing all crafting materials on characters meant solely for storing.

Learning how to craft yourself will make it way cheaper for you to upgrade your gear, craft your own supplies and learning the traits will help you when you find gear with not so ideal traits because you can just transmute them into the trait of your choice.

PvP can also be a very powerful tool. It doesn’t only help you with getting better at avoiding things and survival, you can also make a lot of money with Alliance Points or even Tel’var Stones. At the end of every campaign you can receive a Transmutation Geode which holds 50 Transmutation Gems if you have gained at least 25000 Alliance Points in that Cyrodiil campaign. Since you are still very low in Champion Points I would suggest choosing the non CP campaigns. If you want to make as much AP as possible though, I recommend playing Battlegrounds.

It is advisable to get a daily routine of things to do, if you want to gain Champion Points quickly without actually farming them. Try using EXP boosts such as scrolls or drinks when doing these.
An example of a daily routine:

  • Daily Dungeon queue
  • Daily Battleground queue
  • Crafting Writs
  • Undaunted Daily quests

What’s next?!

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