It's the sixth and final day in our character profiles for the upcoming online role-playing game Guild Wars. Guild Wars won't be a persistent world, massively multiplayer game like EverQuest or Dark Age of Camelot. Instead it will focus heavily on head-to-head competition. You'll play as a character who chooses two of the game's six starting professions: monk, mesmer, ranger, warrior, elementalist, or necromancer. Then you'll try to carve out a set of skills that's right for the job. This won't be easy, especially considering that 450 skills are planned for the game...and your character will only be able to choose eight of them at any given moment.
We'll cap off our profiles of the characters in the game with the necromancer. Be sure to check GameSpot's preview section of Guild Wars for more character profiles, and be sure to watch an exclusive developer interview and exclusive new footage from the game, which is linked below. These profile stories should help you decide what kind of character you'll play in the "world preview event" that begins today, Friday, October 29, in which ArenaNet will open up a test version of the game for you to try out. If you don't make it in to that weekend event--and you're a GameSpot member--don't worry. You'll also be able to try out the game the following weekend in an enhanced event that will feature even more unlocked content.
The NecromancerThe necromancer class specializes in hexes, which are powerful curses that detract from your enemies' combat and/or spellcasting effectiveness and can even drain life force away from them. Necromancers have also become known for having masochistic streaks. That is, they have several skills that damage themselves but can bring about other effects, such as damaging and hindering their enemies in exchange for their own health. This profession holds sway over the ghoulish undead, and it can even summon undead creatures (from the corpses of friends and foes alike) to battle on its behalf. Necromancers are surprisingly well-rounded characters that can both provide support and inflict damage unto enemies in battle.
Attributes and Abilities
The necromancer's primary attribute, which is accessible only to characters who have chosen the necromancer as a primary class, is the grisly practice known as soul reaping. Every time any creature dies near a necromancer, that character automatically regains a store of bonus energy. Some necromancers are at their best when fighting off waves of enemies...then resurrecting them as zombie thralls, then profiting from the deaths of their own minions, then raising a new army...
Undead Minions / Wells
Guild Wars' necromancers exploit corpses of fallen beings for their own uses. They're the only characters in Guild Wars with the ability to summon undead minions from the bodies of the slain.
Necromancers are also the only characters in the game able to use "wells," which are stationary magical effects that may be beneficial to necromancers and their allies--but are powered by nearby corpses.
Skill ListNormal, Non-Elite Skills: Please note: This skill list is based on the current, prerelease version of the game and is subject to change. Each profession possesses 75 skills total, including 50 normal skills and 25 "elite" skills. Below you can find the most current listing of normal skills. Elite skills will be revealed later. (Additionally, ArenaNet is only revealing a handful of skill descriptions for each profession at this time.)
|Icon||Skill and Description|
|Animate Bone Fiend|
|Animate Bone Horror|
Exploit target corpse to animate a level 15 Bone Horror.
|Animate Bone Minions|
|Awaken the Blood|
|Blood of the Master|
Sacrifice 40 Health. All adjacent undead allies are healed for 58.
Sacrifice up to 22 Health, and deal that amount of damage to target foe.
Deathly Swarm flies out slowly and strikes for 40 cold damage (before armor) on up to three targets.
Target suffers from Weakness.
For 24 seconds, target suffers health degeneration of 3, and you gain health regeneration of 3.
|Mark of Pain|
|Mark of Subversion|
|Order of Pain|
For 20 seconds, target enemy suffers Health degeneration of 1. You are healed for 56 when Parasitic Bond ends.
|Price of Failure|
|Shadow of Fear|
Target foe and all adjacent foes attack slower than normal for the next 44 seconds.
|Signet of Agony|
Exploit target corpse to steal 140 Health.
Target foe loses one enchantment, and you gain 40 Health.
|Taste of Death|
|Touch of Agony|
Touch target foe to steal up to 37 Health.
Touch target foe to deal 37 damage.
For 30 seconds, target foe has -26 armor against physical damage.
|Well of Blood|
|Well of Suffering|
|Well of the Profane|