Necromancy, the black art of working with the dead and the undead, will surely damage your karma. Yet many are willing to compromise in order to gain the associated powers.
Similar to magery, necromancy requires that you have a necromancer spellbook and the spells within it, along with the appropriate reagents. All of these can be purchased from a necromancer NPC. The necromancer reagents are: batwing, daemon blood, grave dust, nox crystal, and pig iron.
Casting necromancy skills will reduce your karma. When your karma drops below 0, you will officially become evil, and many good-aligned creatures will attack you on sight. Players usually just complete their training of necromancy to get it out of the way, and if they don't want to be evil, work on raising their karma when they're finished with their training.
When your karma drops below 0, your karma will be locked; no actions will permit it to increase. To unlock your karma, single-click an ankh and select the "unlock karma" option.
Necromancy spells are affected by faster casting equipment and faster cast recovery equipment up to 2fc and 8fcr.
The auxiliary skill to necromancy is spirit speak. The effectiveness of several necromancy spells is dependent on your spirit speak skill. In addition, necromancers often use the spirit speak skill to heal themselves.
The necromancer spells are detailed here. While that page is mostly accurate, there are some sections that are out of date:
Animate Dead - The resulting undead creature will have a form dependent on the original creature's fame and body. The undead creature cannot be commanded, but will tend to follow you and attack anything except humans. You can have at most 3 undead summons at one time; creating another will result in the destruction of one of your existing creatures. Also, the animated dead slowly decay in hit points with time. Animated dead to not use follower slots.
Blood Oath - This spell affects the caster as much as the target; damage that you take will also hurt the target, as well as vice versa.
Evil Omen - Reduces the target's magic resistance by 40, and increases the effect of the next attack.
Lich Form - While in lich form you are immune to bleed attacks. Your fire resistance is reduced by 25%, while cold and poison resistances are increased 10% each.
Wraith Form - While in wraith form you are immune to bleed attacks. Your physical resistance increases 5%, fire resistance decreases 25%, and energy resistance decreases 10%. Mana is not leeched when using area attack spells.
Exorcism - The exorcism spell removes ghosts (dead players) from your vicinity. Ghosts which still have a corpse, and "friendly" ghosts in your own guild, are not affected. This spell works in most dungeons except the Doom gauntlet, and normal outdoor areas, but not in special areas such as guarded towns.
Summon Familiar - Here are the details about each summoned creature.
- Horde Minion: Serves a pack animal, carrying up to 550 stones of your equipment. Will automatically grab things off the ground: gold, arrows and bolts, reagents, potions.
- Shadow Wisp: Occasionally "flares", adding up to 16 mana to you and any of your surrounding allies. You only receive mana if you have negative karma, and the lower your karma, the more mana you receive.
- Dark Wolf: Adds to your stamina every two seconds.
- Death Adder: Attacks with greater or deadly poison on each hit. Allows you to charm snakes by double clicking them; a charmed snake will attack a target you select.
- Vampire Bat: Attacks made by the vampire bat leech hit points that are fed to you.
Training Necromancy: It is very useful to train necromancy earlier, to be able to use lich form and the shadow wisp familiar while training other skills. When training necromancy it helps to wear lower mana cost equipment, and lower reagent cost helps if you want to save money. Wearing faster cast recovery may also help speed things up.
For training, here are the spells you should cast at each skill level:
20-60: Pain Spike; While casting pain spike you can train three skills simultaneously: necromancy, spirit speak (which will go up automatically while casting pain spike on yourself), and healing, if you use bandages on yourself as you train. This spell only costs 5 mana so is very efficient for training purposes.
60-80: Horrific Beast
80-99: Lich Form
99-120: Vampiric Embrace