Necromancy – Animate Dead

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Necromancer Spells


Today on the Pub20 Test Center I’ve collected a lot of sample data for animate dead. Looking it over I could see the general algorithm but there were some cases which didn’t match up. After a bit more testing, it turned out to be quite simple. Here’s how it works:

necromancy_animatedeadAnimate Dead

As noted on the Necromancer spell details page, there are 5 different ‘groups’ of animates which are based on corpse type. Each animate has a ‘requirement’ level, which I’ll explain after the list.

Default Draconic Arachnid Elemental Equine
18000: Lich Lord 

10000: Flesh Golem

5000: Lich

3000: Skeletal Knight, Bone Knight

2000: Mummy

1000: Skeletal Mage, Bone Mage

0: Patchwork Skeleton

18000: Skeletal Dragon 

10000: Flesh Golem

5000: Lich

3000: Skeletal Knight, Bone Knight

2000: Mummy

1000: Skeletal Mage, Bone Mage

0: Patchwork Skeleton

0: Mound of Maggots (always) 5000: Wailing Banshee 

0: Wraith

10000: Hellsteed 

0: Skeletal Steed

Chart of Animates that seemed useful to know:




Skeletal Dragon 


Lich Lord 




Flesh Golem 





Ancient Wyrm

Crystal Hydra



Greater Dragon

Shadow Wyrm

Paragon Dragon

Paragon Serpentine Dragon


Cu Sidhe


Paragon Kirin

Paragon Unicorn


Serpentine Dragon

Insane Dryad 


The value next to each animate determines if it’s chosen. Let’s see how it works:

First, a value which I’ll call ‘casterAbility’ is calculated:

casterAbility = ((30% of necroSkill) + (70% of spiritSkill)) * 180

For example, let’s plug in some numbers:

Necro Spirit Ability
120.0 120.0 21,600
100.0 100.0 18,000
60.0 60.0 10,800
40.0 0.0 2,430

As you might have guessed, this number is then referenced into the lists above. There is, however, one more step. This ‘casterAbility’ value may never exceed the dead creatures fame. Put another way, you cannot animate higher than the corpse is powerful.

if ( casterAbility > corpseFame )
casterAbility = corpseFame;

An example of this:

A necromancer at 100 necromancy and 100 spirit speak (casterAbility = 18,000) raises a Wisp corpse. Wisps have 4,000 fame, so casterAbility becomes 4,000. That value is then referenced into the animates table and we see it’ll turn into a skeletal knight.

Often it’s easier to understand by example, so let’s see what would happen when a 100nec, 80ss necromancer tried to animate a balron corpse:

Step 1: Compute caster ability:

casterAbility = ((30% of 100.0) + (70% of 80.0)) * 180
casterAbility = ((30) + (56)) * 180
casterAbility = (86) * 180 = 15,480

Step 2: Make sure casterAbility does not exceed corpseFame.

casterAbility = 15,480
corpseFame = 24,000
Is casterAbility > corpseFame? No, so continue on to step 3

Step 3: Look up casterAbility in the animates table:

casterAbility = 15,480
Is casterAbility >= 18,000? No. Skip Lich Lord, check next
Is casterAbility >= 10,000? Yes. Pick Flesh Golem

That’s all there is to it. Also, a complete and accurate list of creature fame values can be found here:

How long do animates last?

It depends on the animate. Every 1.65 seconds the animate loses a single hit point. When it reaches 0 it dies. As such, the stronger the animate is (more HP) the longer it will last. A byproduct of this is that when two equal creatures–one animated and one not–are fighting, the one that’s not animated will win.

Here’s a table of the approximate min and max durations for each animate:

Min Max
Skeletal Dragon 18:34 19:55
Lich Lord 8:19 10:04
Mummy 6:55 7:23
Hellsteed 6:41 7:19
Bone Knight 3:55 4:59
Flesh Golem 3:31 3:59
Lich 3:25 3:59
Wailing Banshee 2:31 2:59
Mound of Maggots 2:01 2:19
Patchwork Skeleton 1:55 2:23
Bone Mage 1:31 1:59
Wraith 1:31 1:59
Skeletal Steed 1:21 1:39



Written by: unknown

Recovered by Urin

Edited by Stupid Miner. June 2010.

Last modified: March 31, 2011

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