Trag'Oul Death Nova Necromancer Guide


Trag'Oul's Avatar Death Nova Solo Push
View all variants

Season 27 brought updates to the Death Nova Necromancer with buffs to Funerary Pick and Iron Rose. This patch also included a juicy boost for Trag'Oul's Avatar, all of which combines into a powerhouse for Greater Rift pushing. You can make a very similar setup using Legacy of Dreams which is almost equally strong and a bit better for farming but ranks on a different solo leaderboard.

All the power comes from having large pulls that scale your AoE damage through the roof. As a result, pushing high in solo typically requires a Rift Guardian that spawns adds consistently (e.g. Saxtris, Eskandiel) or using one or multiple saved Pylons with Nemesis Bracers to spawn extra targets that can fuel Bloodtide Blade. Even with the massive damage bonus of Funerary Pick fights against single targets bosses can take forever on the highest tiers.

While not being very consistent at pushing, it can be really fun to decimate huge pulls in just a few casts with this build. Especially when playing on higher tiers in a group where you don't have to worry about pulling or killing the boss, this build is the most effective. The main parts of the guide describe the solo pushing variant, adjustments for different game modes can be found below.

Easy to Gear ✔
Simple DPS Rotation ✔
Incredible AoE Damage ✔

High Toughness and Recovery ✔

❌ Sensitive to Fishing
❌ Simulacrums can Die
❌ Has to Stand Still a lot
❌ Struggles on Single Targets

Core Setup

Core Item Build


  • Trag'Oul's Avatar quadruples our Life and adds 10,000% extra damage to Blood Skills. We also gain all runes for Blood Rush and Siphon Blood for more utility and survivability.
  • Bloodtide Blade adds 400% increased damage to Death Nova for each nearby enemy, up to 25 stacks.
  • Funerary Pick provides another steady 200% damage bonus after stacking it with Siphon Blood Power Shift as well as an extra bonus against 1-3 targets.
  • Iron Rose casts Blood Nova automatically while siphoning. These are replicated by Simulacrums, which can also proc Area Damage.
  • Haunted Visions makes our Simulacrums last forever.
  • Krysbin's Sentence gives us 100% against slowed or 300% extra damage against stunned (etc.) enemies.
  • Convention of Elements fits in well with the rotation-based gameplay of the build to provide another 200% extra damage during our nukes.
  • Dayntee's Binding adds 50% damage reduction while any nearby enemy is cursed.
  • Mantle of Channeling synergizes with our channeling-based playstyle.

Season 28 Altar of Rites

Season 28 brings a brand new progression feature called the Altar of Rites that grants tremendous powers to your entire account in exchange for sacrifices. It requires you to farm Bounties, kill the Ubers, craft the Staff of Herding, and more. Completing all 26 of these tasks, along with sacrificing 6 Primal Ancients grants you unbelievable Damage, Defense, Quality of Life, Increased Drops, 3 Potion Super Powers, and the juicy Wings of Terror. Read the full guides on Unlocking the Altar and the Altar Mechanics by Raxxanterax and Chewingnom to learn everything about this fantastic Season!

Note: The suggested path assumes you are playing Solo and used the Challenge Rift Cache to help you level up.

Optimal Path

Node 2: Choose Anointed to gain a full set of 70 yellows from level 18-70!

Node 6: Rush to gain double Bounties to help unlock other Nodes in the Altar.

Nodes 7-14: These are the last Nodes you can gain until the Challenge Rift resets. Take at least 1 Node at the bottom of each path to unlock all 3 Potion Super Powers. Pick up the Mirror Node at the top for a colossal 41% extra XP all season. Remember to unlock Father once you clear GR70 solo and have your first Primal!

Nodes 15-26: Pick up the final Quality of Life, Damage, and Defense Nodes (in that order) to finish the Altar.

Potion Super Powers: Take Father first, then Mother, and finally Mortal.

Disclaimer: The Mortal and Mother Potions require you to salvage 2 and 3 Primals respectively. Unlock them as soon as you have those materials as they don't cost a point!

Recommended Altar Path
Use the Scroll Bar to see Altar Progression

Omen and Revelation make your life much easier, remove any reason to run Invigorating Gemstone and enable a push setup without Blood Rush.

In addition, Leech Blood Flask can be used to reduce the Health Potion cooldown massively for more buffs from the season theme.

One thing to be aware about is that with Frenzied Shrine it's easy to reach too much Attack Speed that would result in a DPS downgrade due to the way Iron Rose breakpoints work. In most pushing scenarios you can expect to have this buff and you should not exceed 1.83 APS by too much with it. This means you usually want to have exactly one Attack Speed roll on your gear.

Global Stat Priorities

Our offensive priorities are: Death Nova Damage > Critical Hit Damage > Physical Damage > Critical Hit Chance > Area Damage. Additionally, we want to hit at least 1.67 Attacks per Second for the optimal breakpoints, which usually requires 3 sources of Attack Speed in addition to 10% from Paragons.

All remaining stats go towards defense in the following order: Vitality > Armor > Life % > Elite Damage Reduction > All Resistance. Note that Vitality is better than a socketed Flawless Royal Amethyst on a Helm up to ~8000 total Vitality.

Assembling the Build

1. Do the Challenge Rift for the materials to cube Legendary Powers. You can complete this once a week for additional resources and we always update the guide for you!

2. Gather the full Trag'Oul's Avatar set. Each piece can be gambled from Kadala for Bloodshards. Do not salvage any duplicate pieces you find! Instead convert them to another part of the set with Recipe 4 in Kanai's Cube. If you have extra materials you can use Recipe 3 to craft the remaining pieces, but this is expensive and not recommended for new players.

3. Gamble from Kadala in this order:

  1. The full Trag'Oul's Avatar set
  2. Iron Rose
  3. Dayntee's Binding
  4. Steuart's Greaves
  5. Mantle of Channeling
  6. Convention of Elements, Briggs' Wrath and Krysbin's Sentence
  7. Nemesis Bracers

4. Craft using Recipe 3 in Kanai's Cube in this order:

  1. 2-Handed Scythes to get Bloodtide Blade
  2. Scythes to get Funerary Pick and Scythe of the Cycle
  3. Amulets to get Haunted Visions
  4. Anything from the Gamble list in Step 3 that you haven't already acquired

5. Do Bounties to acquire the following items for this build:

  • Act 1: Ring of Royal Grandeur
  • Act 2: Gloves of Worship (for your follower)
  • Act 3: Avarice Band
  • Act 4: Can drop any bounty item from any act
  • Bounty Turn In: Recipes for Aughild's Authority, Guardian's Jeopardy, Sage's Journey and Cain's Destiny (for your follower)

6. Use Primordial Ashes in Kanai's Cube with the new Curiosity of Lorath Nahr recipe to obtain a free Crafted Primal Ancient. Since you can only equip one of them, choosing the right item to focus matters! Great candidates are Weapons, Offhands, Jewelry or any item with an important multiplier. With that in mind, we recommend getting one of the following items:

  • Funerary Pick
  • Iron Rose
  • Krysbin's Sentence

Item Stat Priorities

Main-HandFunerary Pick
Scythe of the Cycle
Bloodtide Blade (Cubed)
1. Damage Range
2. Socket Ramaladni's Gift
3. Damage %
4. Area Damage
5. Attack Speed
6. Intelligence
Off-HandIron Rose1. Critical Hit Chance
2. Death Nova Damage
3. Area Damage
4. Intelligence
HelmTrag'Oul's Guise
Aughild's Spike (Crafted)
Guardian's Gaze (Crafted)
1. Death Nova Damage
2. Critical Hit Chance
3. Intelligence
4. Vitality
GlovesTrag'Oul's Claws1. Critical Hit Chance
2. Critical Hit Damage
3. Attack Speed
4. Area Damage
5. Intelligence
ShouldersMantle of Channeling
Aughild's Power (Crafted)
Trag'Oul's Heart
1. Intelligence
2. Area Damage
3. Vitality
4. Life %
Chest Trag'Oul's Scales
Aughild's Rule (Crafted)
1. Intelligence
2. Sockets Flawless Royal Topaz
3. Vitality
4. Armor
5. Elite Damage Reduction
PantsTrag'Oul's Hide1. Intelligence
2. Sockets Flawless Royal Topaz
3. Vitality
4. Armor
BootsTrag'Oul's Stalwart Greaves
Steuart's Greaves
1. Death Nova Damage
2. Intelligence
3. Vitality
4. Armor
Ring 1Krysbin's Sentence1. Socket
2. Critical Hit Damage
3. Critical Hit Chance
4. Attack Speed
Ring 2Convention of Elements
Briggs' Wrath
Ring of Royal Grandeur (A1 Bounties, Cubed)
1. Socket
2. Critical Hit Chance
3. Critical Hit Damage
5. Area Damage
6. Attack Speed
BracersGuardian's Aversion (Crafted)
Aughild's Search (Crafted)
Nemesis Bracers
1. Physical Damage
2. Critical Hit Chance
3. Intelligence
4. Vitality
AmuletHaunted Visions1. Socket
2. Physical Damage
3. Critical Hit Damage
4. Critical Hit Chance
BeltDayntee's Binding
Guardian's Case (Crafted)
1. Intelligence
2. Armor
3. Vitality
4. Life %
PotionBottomless Potion of the UnfetteredTo avoid Crowd Control effects
during your DPS phases


  • Bane of the Trapped provides up to 60% multiplicative damage increase.
  • The other two gems vary depending on activity:
    • Bane of the Stricken is required to kill the boss in solo Greater Rifts.
    • Zei's Stone of Vengeance adds extra DPS in pushes.
    • Bane of the Powerful is used for farming and groups.
    • Boon of the Hoarder is great in Nephalem Rifts.


  • Death Nova is the core of the build and our main nuke. With the power of Bloodtide Blade's density scaling, we are able to decimate large hordes of enemies in a matter of seconds. We use the Physical rune Blood Nova for increased DPS. This skill is not used manually, we just have it on the bar for the rune because without it Simulacrum uses the unruned skill.
  • Siphon Blood triggers our Blood Nova and stacks up the bonus damage from Funerary Pick. This is how we do damage. Be aware that these automatic Novas do not proc Area Damage and the damage buff falls off after a few seconds, requiring constant channeling.
  • Simulacrum Blood and Bone paired with Haunted Visions gives us two friends that mimic our casts for extra damage. These have to be positioned through smart movement so that they can hit most enemies. In large pulls, they are the main source of damage because only their casts proc Area Damage.
  • Leech Blood Flask doesn't offer much on its own but combined with the seasonal theme becomes a powerhouse of extra damage procs and allows us to benefit from Dayntee's Binding. Alternatively, Frailty Early Grave can be used before unlocking the potion powers.
  • Bone Armor Dislocation gives us damage reduction and activates the extra Krysbin's Sentence effect.
  • Blood Rush adds extra mobility and helps with positioning. It also heals us and adds extra Armor for 2 seconds.


  • Swift Harvesting is used to hit the right breakpoint for Siphon Blood.
  • Stand Alone is a very strong toughness choice.
  • Spreading Malediction provides 1% additive damage bonus for every cursed enemy. In large pulls this can easily give you upwards of 50% extra additive damage.
  • Final Service prevents untimely deaths.
  • Fueled by Death can be used to increase speed in certain setups.

Paragon Points

1. Movement Speed1. Attack Speed1. Armor1. Area Damage
2. Vitality12. Critical Hit Damage2. Life %2. Life per Hit
3. Intelligence3. Critical Hit Chance3. All Resistance3. Resource Cost Reduction
4. Maximum Essence4. Cooldown Reduction4. Life per Second4. Pickup Radius

1 Add a bit of Vitality if you feel too squishy (a total of 800,000 Life is recommended).


Patch 2.7.0 revamped the follower system giving all 3 hirelings new powers and the emanate system. The first thing you should do is read our complete follower guide and remember the key takeaways:

  1. The emanation system allows followers to share certain legendary and set powers with you. The most important ones are: The Flavor of Time, Nemesis Bracers, Avarice Band, Sage’s Journey and Cain’s Destiny. Click the guide above for the full list.
  2. Follower’s powers are based on their main stat (maxed at 25,000, but they have a 2.5x multiplier so you only need 10,000). This means we stack Intelligence on the Enchantress, Dexterity on the Scoundrel and Strength on the Templar.
  3. Guardian's Jeopardy (3) Bonus works for followers by improving their inherent stat multiplier from x2.5 to x3.5, making it slightly easier to hit the 25,000 main stat threshold if needed.
  4. Followers share 20% of their Experience, Magic and Gold Find stats with you.
  5. Legendary gems do not work on followers, except Esoteric Alteration and Mutilation Guard.
  6. With Enforcer equipped on the player followers stay alive easily even without an immortality relic. The 90% damage reduction counts for them, too.
  7. Cooldown Reduction does not work for any follower skill except the Templar’s Heal.
  8. Followers never deal significant damage; you’re on your own to clear the content.

With these in mind, let’s get into our recommendation for this build.

Select Follower


The overall idea is to make large pulls and blow them up with a few very strong Death Nova explosions through overlapping the effects of Area Damage, Krysbin's Sentence, Convention of Elements and all your other multipliers. The main mechanic to play around is Bloodtide Blade, which is responsible for the huge AoE potential and weak single target damage of the build.

  1. Gather a full 300 stacks of Trag'Oul's Avatar (4) Bonus, then summon your Simulacrums. They are buffed by your increased maximum Life. Make sure you position them well before a nuke, their damage is more important than yours.
  2. Cast Bone Armor once in a big pull to gain the damage reduction bonus (up to 30% from 10 stacks). Other than that, only use it during your nuke cycles (during Physical Convention of Elements (CoE)) to get your Krysbin's Sentence bonus for Death Nova.
  3. Between your cycles, either run or kite enemies towards the next pull.
  4. Stack up Funerary Pick with Siphon Blood before a nuke phase. Try to kill a very small enemy/low HP leftovers to spawn an Oculus Ring.
  5. During your Physical CoE cycle, cast Bone Armor to refresh the duration and apply a stun for Krysbin's Sentence, then hold down Siphon Blood to release Death Novas. Prioritize elites to deal more damage to them. Repeat if there are still enough enemies around, else kite them further. It's fine to skip a cycle here and there to prepare a better pull.
  6. Don't hesitate to skip large trash or elite enemies even when they have rather low hit points. Your ability to finish off single enemies is extremely weak.
  7. In solo push: Towards the end of a run, try to save up 1-2 Pylons (no Conduits) on the map where you will spawn the Rift Guardian. Adding additional enemies to the fight using Nemesis Bracers after you have spent some time stacking Bane of the Stricken greatly reduces the time needed to kill it, especially on single target fights. Especially Horde or Illusionist packs are what you are looking for, as more enemies means more damage from your Bloodtide Blade.


This build is very tanky as long as you keep up your buffs and use Siphon Blood to heal. Place more paragon points into Vitality and double-check that you have Final Service equipped.

Check out our dedicated Hardcore Survival Guide to learn more about how to succeed in this game mode!


Nephalem Rifts
Nova T16

We have more than enough damage, so we include extra speed: Steuart's Greaves and Boon of the Hoarder. Wherever possible, stack up more Pickup Radius to increase the size of Aura of Frailty. We don't play around Convention of Elements and just attack whenever we find enemies.

Use Blood Rush to go fast and hunt big packs or elites as much as possible. Keep up Bone Armor and use all damage multipliers (Krysbin's Sentence, Convention of Elements, Funerary Pick) for your nukes. Rejoice as Briggs' Wrath pulls enemies (and their loot) to you!

To go even faster, you can drop Bone Armor and Spreading Malediction to pick up Devour Devouring Aura and Fueled by Death.

In groups, replace Ring of Royal Grandeur, Mantle of Channeling and Guardian's Jeopardy with Avarice Band, Trag'Oul's Heart, Goldwrap and Nemesis Bracers.

At higher Paragon (2500+), replace Guardian's Jeopardy with Aughild's Authority.

If you don't want to channel and keep up Funerary Pick, you can also run with Scythe of the Cycle to have a more consistent damage bonus. In that case replace Siphon Blood and Mantle of Channeling with Devour Devouring Aura and Krelm's Buff Belt.

GR Solo Speeds
Nova Solo Speeds

This is a speedier version designed for 2.5-3min runs. We include Steuart's Greaves to run faster and don't try to make large pulls but instead managing Siphon Blood becomes more important. Aim for a GR level where the boss dies in around one CoE rotation.

Keep up Bone Armor and use it on elites for extra damage from Krysbin's Sentence. If you are not just skipping long stretches, tap Siphon Blood regularly to keep up the buff from Funerary Pick. When you find a bigger pack or elites, target them to gain the extra damage bonus. On the boss, time Bone Armor to land during the Physical cycle.

Pay special attention to effects that produce large bursts of damage, such as dying Grotesques or Molten Explosions. These can easily kill your Simulacrums and leave you with a long cooldown before they come up again.

At higher Paragon (2000+), replace Guardian's Jeopardy with Aughild's Authority.

GR Solo Push
Nova Solo Push

Compared to most other builds in Season 28, this doesn't have an alternate version to use with Empowered Shrine. The only change you can make based on the season theme is adjusting your Attack Speed rolls as described in the seasonal section above and dropping Blood Rush to run with Frailty Early Grave thanks to Revelation.

This is the main variation described in the other parts of the guide. We play around Bloodtide Blade while getting all of our multipliers up for short, high DPS bursts.

At the start of the run, carefully gather 300 stacks of the Trag'Oul's Avatar (4) Bonus, then summon your Simulacrums to improve their survivability.

Make sure to create large pulls and don't waste your time on small pulls or leftover elites. Instead, try to kite them to another group of enemies. Keep up Bone Armor and use all damage multipliers (Krysbin's Sentence, Convention of Elements, Funerary Pick) for your nukes. Make sure your Simulacrums are positioned well inside the pull. Rinse and repeat. Before the boss, save a pylon or two (not Conduit) to spawn enemies during the Rift Guardian fight after stacking Bane of the Stricken for 1-3 minutes.

Pay special attention to effects that produce large bursts of damage, such as dying Grotesques or Molten Explosions. These can easily kill your Simulacrums and leave you with a long cooldown before they come up again.

If you feel too squishy, replace Zei's Stone of Vengeance with Invigorating Gemstone. This also allows you to use a different Legendary Potion.

At low Paragon (2500 and below), replace Aughild's Authority with Guardian's Jeopardy.

GR Group Trash Killer
Nova Group TK

This variant is very similar to the solo version. The main difference is that we are tankier through party buffs and don't have to kill the boss. We include Bane of the Powerful for more damage.

A slightly stronger but more difficult version is available using Scythe of the Cycle instead of Funerary Pick. For that, switch the Siphon Blood rune to Drain Life and make sure to not channel it too much between your CoE rotations as each Nova reduces the remaining duration of Bone Armor, which has to be refreshed more often. This version is especially useful for more coordinated high-end pushes with a separate Rift Guardian Killer in the party.

At the start of the run, carefully gather 300 stacks of the Trag'Oul's Avatar (4) Bonus, then summon your Simulacrums to improve their survivability.

Coordinate with your team about where to make pulls and when to nuke. Keep up Bone Armor (be careful to not interfere with your Supports making a pull for you) and the Funerary Pick buff, then use all damage multipliers (Krysbin's Sentence, Convention of Elements, Funerary Pick) for your damage phases. Make sure your Simulacrums are positioned well inside the pull. Jump into Oculus Rings when you see them and target elites as much as possible for the bonus from Funerary Pick.

Pay special attention to effects that produce large bursts of damage, such as dying Grotesques or Molten Explosions. These can easily kill your Simulacrums and leave you with a long cooldown before they come up again.

Once you feel tanky enough, you can replace Dayntee's Binding with Witching Hour for more damage.

At low Paragon (2500 and below), replace Aughild's Authority with Guardian's Jeopardy.

You can swap your chosen curse between Frailty Early Grave, Decrepify Wither or Leech Osmosis depending on what your party needs.

Video Guide

Guide Video


Trag'Oul's Avatar

  • (2) Bonus grants Blood Rush and Siphon Blood every rune. Choosing any rune or no rune has no effect.
  • (4) Bonus lets you stack a bonus granting you up to 300% Maximum Life, as a separate multiplier to Life %.
  • (6) Bonus provides 10,000% increased damage (x101) to Life-spending abilities and doubles your healing from skills.

Iron Rose

  • While channeling Siphon Blood, you automatically cast Death Nova periodically.
  • These Death Novas will also consume Bone Armor duration (through Scythe of the Cycle) and only then get the damage benefit the same way.
  • As these free casts are considered procs, they do not benefit from Area Damage at all. Simulacrums will proc Area Damage, however!
  • Siphon Blood ticks every 21 / (Attacks per Second * Swift Harvesting) frames.
  • Iron Rose has an internal cooldown of 18 frames, the optimal breakpoint with Swift Harvesting is 1.67 to 1.83 APS.
  • Typical one-handed setups will range between 10-11 frames tick rate, meaning you can get a Blood Nova on every other tick (20 or 22 frames // 3.0 or 2.72 times per second).

Funerary Pick

  • Siphon Blood Power Shift lasts 3 seconds. Stacks are additive with each other, stacking up to a 200% bonus damage multiplier. One tick refreshes the duration of all stacks.
  • The bonus damage against drained enemies is another multiplier for a total of x12 damage against 2-3 targets or x21 against a single target.
  • The bonus damage against drained enemies does not work for damage done by pets or Simulacrum.
  • With Simulacrum Blood and Bone the total damage done against a single target is triple of the usual.


  • Haunted Visions makes this skill drain 1% of your Life every second. If you are unable to pay this cost (i.e. you are below 1% HP when the cost is applied), the Simulacrums despawn.
  • Simulacrums cast your Secondary Skills (Death Nova) and Grim Scythe when you do.
  • They don't cast Siphon Blood themselves but still proc Death Nova from Iron Rose when you do (with your chosen rune, unruned otherwise).
  • Your Simulacrums scale with your character's toughness (Life, Armor, Resistances) and can die from monster damage when it's too low. Especially large bursts of damage (e.g. Grotesque explosions) can rip them apart easily even when you could survive that damage yourself, so be mindful about such situations as the cooldown to resummon them is very long.
  • You can snapshot the extra Life gained from Trag'Oul's Avatar to make them a lot tankier.


  • Gather the full Trag'Oul's Avatar set together with the core items.
  • Always keep up Bone Armor.
  • Make large pulls to benefit from Bloodtide Blade the most.
  • Move your Simulacrums into position before a nuke.
  • Prioritize high HP targets and elites with Siphon Blood for the bonus from Funerary Pick.
  • Save pylons to kill the Rift Guardian more easily with extra enemies in a solo push.

Good luck!


Written by wudijo.
Reviewed by Northwar.


Feb 15th 2023
Updated for Season 28 / Patch 2.7.5.

Aug 17th 2022
Added Full Build Guide for Season 27 / Patch 2.7.4.