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Thread: Complete Mercenary Guide

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    Complete Mercenary Guide

    This page is to list all of the useful items available to put on mercenaries; including items with points in auras, and items used to build a follower capable of tanking some of the tougher areas of the game!
    __________________________________________________ ___________________________________

    Build suggestions welcome; leave a comment!


    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-==-=-=-=-=-=-=
    Warning : This is an on-going project - bear with me!
    Until I come across every item in game that hasn't been put on the Wiki since receiving
    an update there may be some mistakes listed where items differ between patches.
    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-==-=-=-=-=-=-=




    ======================= MERCENARY SKILLS: =========================

    These are the abilities available to each type of Mercenary. Act 2 has a slightly different mechanic, being that the Aura type is different depending on not only which type of Mercenary you hire, but also which Difficulty level you hire them from.

    For tanking, act 2 and Act 5 are your best bets to aim for.
    Although, stacking protecting auras on whichever Mercenary you're able to equip the best is going to out-last another hireling that's under-geared.

    Notable reasons to chose each type are:
    Act 1's ability to freeze and chill, plus a minor defense de-buff
    Act 2's Passive Aura skill.
    Act 3's ability to freeze and chill, plus an extra offhand item slot to stack auras with.
    Act 4's ability to be.
    Act 5's ability to Stun large groups of enemies.

    Act 1:
    Ranged.
    Bow, Helm, Body.
    Inner Sight - lowers defense.
    Fire/Cold arrow.

    Act 2:
    Melee.
    Spear/Polearm, Helm, Body.
    Normal/Hell:
    -Defensive: Holy Freeze Low damage, Slows 50% AoE.
    -Offensive: Might Party Damage % buff AoE.
    -Combat: Thorns Reflect Damage AoE.
    Nightmare:
    -Defensive: Defiance Party Defense % buff AoE.
    -Offensive: Prayer Healing over time AoE.
    -Combat: Blessed aim Attack Rating % buff AoE.

    Act 3:
    Ranged.
    Sword, Shield, Helm, Body.
    -Cold: Slow, Freeze, Damage, Defense buff.
    -Lightning: Damage only.
    -Fire: Damage only.

    Act 4:
    Passive.
    Harp, Wings, Halo, Body.
    Plays music and flies around behind you, creating a lovely atmosphere as you traipse through hell.
    Totally not made up.

    Act 5:
    Melee.
    Sword (1h/2h), Helm (and Barbarian Helms), Body.
    Stun, Bash - Able to stun large groups of enemies.




    ========================= ITEMS: =========================

    Disclaimer:
    This guide lists note-worthy Unique, Set, and Runeword items.
    This doesn't mean that these are the only useful items available. Rare items have the ability to be best-in-slot.
    Due to their random nature, it's difficult to include them in this guide.





    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Amulets: =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

    With Patch 6.0 came the release of Mercenary Amulets. These weren't able to be equipped by anybody but the Mercenary, and in turn, they weren't able to wear normal Amulets.
    These bought a huge change to the way Mercenaries work, and as such, new builds to optimize their effectiveness are still being found!
    A list of every Mercenary Amulet of note can be found below.

    TBA
    TBA
    TBA
    TBA




    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Auras: =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

    It is worth noting that when multiple Auras of the same type are in use, only the highest ability level will effect the party, however the Mercenary will ALWAYS use his/her own Aura.
    Knowing this, we can stack Auras even more effectively by complimenting other members of the party.
    It's often worth a trip to Act 2 in order to get the most out of teaming up with another player.

    ============= Armour: =============
    =-= Defiance =-=
    Steel Carapace; Unique Shadow Plate; Level 5-10.

    =-= Holy Fire =-=
    Azmodan's Shell; Unique Great Hauberk; Level 41. (Varies? Conf.)

    'DRAGON' runeword; 3 sockets, Sur Lo Sol; Level 10-15.

    =-= Holy Freeze =-=
    Duriel's Shell; Unique Cuirass; Level 7. (Varies? Conf.)

    =-= Pestilence =-=
    The Husk Of Kaalut; Unique Scarab Husk; Level 5-10.

    =-= Resist Cold =-=
    Elder Of Tristram; Unique Dusk Shroud; Level 3-6.

    =-= Queen's Bounty =-=
    Cow Queen's Hide; Set Wire Fleece; Level 22. (Varies? Conf.)

    =-= Thorns =-=
    'BRAMBLE' runeword; 4 sockets, Ral Ohm Sur Eth; Level 20-30.



    ============= Helms: =============
    =-= Concentration =-=
    'FOCUS' runeword; 3 sockets, Um Tor Ohm; Level 10.

    =-= Holy Shock =-=
    'DREAM' runeword; 3 sockets, Io Jah Pul; Level 15.

    Short Circlet; Unique Circlet; Level 5. (Level varies? Conf.)

    =-= Mass Regeneration =-=
    Devil's Bargain; Unique Demonhead; Level 25-30.

    =-= Meditation =-=
    Griswold's Valor; Set Carona; Level 5. ------ NOTE: Aura requires set shield or armour also.

    =-= Pestilence =-=
    Trag'Oul's True Guise; Unique Bone Visage; Level 5-10. ===== Adds Conviction to Fire Golem

    =-= Resist Fire =-=
    Crown Of The Skeleton King; Unique Circlet; Level 6.




    ============= Act 1: BOWS =============
    =-= Concentration =-=
    'PRIDE' runeword; 4 sockets, Cham Sur Io Lo; Level 16-20.

    =-= Fanatisism =-=
    'FAITH' runeword; 4 sockets, Ohm Jah Lem Eld; Level 15.

    =-= Holy Fire =-=
    'HAND OF JUSTICE' runeword; 4 sockets, Sur Cham Amn Lo; Level 16.

    =-= Holy Freeze =-=
    'ICE' runeword; 4 sockets, Amn Shael Jah Lo; Level 18.

    'DOOM' runeword; 5 sockets, Hel Ohm Um Lo Cham; Level 15-20.

    =-= Thorns =-=
    'EDGE' runeword; 3 sockets, Tir Tal Amn; Level 15.

    =-= Vigor =-=
    'HARMONY' runeword; 4 sockets, Tir Ith Sol Ko; Level 10.




    ============= Act 2: POLEARMS / SPEARS =============
    =-= Concentration =-=
    'PRIDE' runeword; 4 sockets, Polearm/Spear, Cham Sur Io Lo; Level 16-20.

    =-= Conviction =-=
    'INFINITY' runeword; 4 sockets, Polearm, Ber Mal Ber Ist; Level 12.

    =-= Fanaticism =-=
    Insanity; Set Thresher; Level 10-20.

    =-= Holy Fire =-=
    'HAND OF JUSTICE' runeword; 4 sockets, Polearm/Spear, Sur Cham Amn Lo; Level 16.

    =-= Holy Freeze =-=
    'DOOM' runeword; 5 sockets, Polearm/Spear, Hel Ohm Um Lo Cham; Level 15-20.




    ============= Act 3: SWORDS & SHIELDS =============
    =-= Armour Penetration =-=
    Sss'Haa's Primordial Fang; Unique Mythical SWORD; Level 20-25.

    =-= Blessed Aim =-=
    'BANISH' runeword; 3 sockets, SHIELD, Ohm Lo Vex; Level 10-12.

    =-= Bulwark =-=
    Dragon's Bulwark; Unique Hyperion SHIELD; Level 15-20.

    =-= Concentration =-=
    'PRIDE' runeword; 4 sockets, SWORD, Cham Sur Io Lo; Level 16-20.

    =-= Conviction =-=
    'INFINITY' runeword; 4 sockets, SWORD, Ber Mal Ber Ist; Level 10-15.

    'MALEVOLENT' runeword; 4 sockets, SHIELD, Tor Zod Xer Gul; Level 9.

    =-= Holy Fire =-=
    'HAND OF JUSTICE' runeword; 4 sockets, SWORD, Sur Cham Amn Lo; Level 20.

    'DRAGON' runeword; 3 sockets, Shield, Sur Lo Sol; Level 10-15.

    =-= Holy Freeze =-=
    'DOOM' runeword; 5 sockets, SWORD, Hel Ohm Um Lo Cham; Level 15-20.
    Medusa's Gaze; Unique Aegis SHIELD; Level 5-10.

    =-= Holy Shock =-=
    'DREAM' runeword; 3 sockets, SHIELD, Io Jah Pul; Level 15.

    =-= Meditation =-=
    Bane Of The underworld; Unique Troll's Nest SHIELD; Level 15-20.

    =-= Might=-=
    Angelic Sickle; Set Sabre; Level 3. --- Requires Set Ring Mail: Angelic Mantle.

    Bul-Kathos' Tribal Guardian; Set Mythical Sword; Level 11.

    'LAST WISH' runeword; 6 sockets, SWORD, Jah Mal Jah Sur Jah Ber; Level 17. (Varies? Conf.)

    =-= Redemption =-=
    'PHOENIX' runeword; 4 sockets, SHIELD, Vex Vex Lo Jah; Level 10-18.

    'PHOENIX' runeword; 4 sockets, SWORD, Vex Vex Lo Jah; Level 10-18.

    =-= Salvation =-=
    Azurewrath; Unique Phase Blade SWORD; Level 3 (Level varies? Conf.)

    =-= Sanctuary =-=
    'LAWBRINGER' runeword; 3 sockets, SWORD, Amn Lem Ko; Level 6-18.




    ============= Act 5: 2H SWORDS (And Barb Helms) =============
    =-= Concentration =-=
    'PRIDE' runeword; 4 sockets, Cham Sur Io Lo; Level 16-20.

    =-= Conviction =-=
    'INFINITY' runeword; 4 sockets, Ber Mal Ber Ist; Level 10-15.

    =-= Holy Fire =-=
    'HAND OF JUSTICE' runeword; 4 sockets, Sur Cham Amn Lo; Level 16.

    =-= Holy Freeze =-=
    'DOOM' runeword; 5 sockets, Hel Ohm Um Lo Cham; Level 15-20.

    =-= Fanaticism =-=
    Bul-Kathos' Sacred Charge; Set Colossus Blade; Level 8.

    Cataclysm; Unique Colossus Blade; Level 10-15.

    =-= Might =-=
    Bul-Kathos' Tribal Guardian; Set Mythical Sword; Level 11.

    Buster Sword; Unique Whatthefuckevenisthis Sword; Level 30-40.

    'LAST WISH' runeword; 6 sockets, Jah Mal Jah Sur Jah Ber; Level 17. (Varies? Conf.)

    =-= Redemption =-=
    'PHOENIX' runeword; 4 sockets, Vex Vex Lo Jah; Level 10-18.

    =-= Sanctuary =-=
    'LAWBRINGER' runeword; 3 sockets, Amn Lem Ko; Level 6-18.

    =-= Unholy Might =-=
    Skull Of The Unclean; Unique Guardian Crown, HELM; Level 8-12.

    =-= Vengeance =-=
    'KINGSLAYER' runeword; 4 sockets, Mal Um Gul Fal; Level 20.

    =-= Vigor =-=
    Korlic's Honor; Unique Conqueror Crown, HELM; Level 6-9.




    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=CURSES:=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

    ============= Act 1: BOWS =============
    =-= Amplify Damage =-=
    Witchwild String; Unique Short Siege Bow; Level 5.

    =-= Decrepify =-=
    'WRATH' runeword; 4 sockets, Pul Lum Ber Mal; Level 1.

    M'avina's Caster; Set Grand Matron Bow; Level 15. === 10% Striking. ---- Note: Requires Helm/Body.

    =-= Lower Resist =-=
    Frostfire; Unique Great Bow; Level 5. === 25% Striking.




    ============= Act 2: POLEARMS / SPEARS =============
    =-= Weaken =-=
    Blackleach Blade; Unique Bill; Level 5. === 35% Striking.




    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Noteworthy Items: =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=


    ============= Act 1: BOWS =============
    Zephyr; Unique Crusader Bow; -100% Target Defense debuff.
    Last edited by Fornicate; 10-05-2017 at 11:07 PM.

  2. #2
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    Updates likely ongoing. Let me know how if you have any helpful information! Many of the Runewords need their formulas added!

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    'Bul kathos children' set can be aura too

    Fanaticism aura
    Bul kathos Charge;set colossus blade ; level 8

    might aura
    Bul kathos guardian; set mithical sword; level11

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    Nice to meet you and thanks for doing this. I (and hopefully a few others will chime in) will try to get you some updates on this guide this weekend. I have one constructive critique so far. If you have any time, look through the unique items. There are several excellent uniques suitable for mercenaries missing from this list. On this server, the best items are usually uniques unless - as is often the case with mercs - you are just looking for a particular aura found only on particular runewords. Thanks again!

    Also note, there will be some significant changes to mercenaries in the next patch (about 8 days away) that may significantly alter this list. Indeed, you we will need to add a new item category.

    As of now, most mercs either function as tanks or as aura bots. Their damage just isn't good enough right now for a variety of reasons with a very select few exceptions. That could change next patch. Just keep that in mind for now.

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    Thanks for the help! Auras are covered it seems, some input on on-hit items would be great if anybody has any experience with what works and is worth putting in?

    Upon the next patch I'm sure it would be helpful to have some feedback on whether damage builds have been made more viable, and how they're built. Watch this space!

    Any viable unique items that're in game which may be of use, but haven't been listed here yet are likely not on the Wiki page either - leave a comment and we'll try to add them in as soon as possible!
    Last edited by Fornicate; 10-05-2017 at 10:21 PM.

  6. #6
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    im playing since the start of 4.1 and I always used a mercenary as a summon necro, so let me tell you what i know so far.

    best starting merc is the a3 freeze merc for people who don't need corpses (and even if you do, most likely) because of shields. you can make an extremely tanky mercenary who is also a ranged character so he won't be randomly 1 shotted by melee attacks (mostly, again).

    best starting gear for a mercenary is (talking about pre-merc amulet patches):

    - focus helm (all res max res conc aura etc)
    - guardian angel (purely for max all res cap)
    - medusa's gaze (holy freeze + 75 all res dr etc)
    - azuwrath (salv aura on eq is great early on for any player)

    this setup gets you maxed and stacked res for merc. ofc he dies to the weakest magic spells but thats not a huge concern early on

    ill add some more stuff later on

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    okay for end-game setups (you can edit ur main post and add these properly if you wish)

    a5 merc has decent all-around setups since some of the 2h weapons are extremely good.

    for the new patch the best setup would be:

    New 2h sword that gives %10 damage amp to everyone (i forgot its name, only saw as a screenshot)

    serpent's deception armor. evade %10 max res socs etc. all purpose defensive armor.

    New godly merc amulet with %30 ALL damage reduction, phys res and %10 max res. serpents and this = max res capped with huge phys res

    for helmet i would probably go for crown for up to level 20 might aura and superb defensive stats like ALL damage reduction and fhr based on vita.


    This merc build i've written is probably 3 times tankier than your main character. also the new merc amulet has 250 life when struck that means he literally wont die unless bahamut poops on him and his blasts don't proc life when struck.

    if you need more auras out of your merc i'd recommend using act 2 blessed aim or might mercenary for end game.

    physical set weapon has fanaticism aura on eq. you'd rather have fanat on your own gear as it increases the benefit for your character (and also to your summons because % damage effects most summons in anni now). still it is a great damage boost if you can't find proper way to get a fanaticism aura on yourself.

    for helmet you have two choices: crown of high heavens for might aura, but that means you won't be able to use might aura from act 2 merc themselves (they don't stack) or focus runeword gives concentration aura on eq which is a rare aura to obtain on yourself.
    both have their good defensive options (focus rw has %max all res but crown has all damage reduction) and depends on what you choose.

    for chestpiece i'd recommend serpent's or if you still want more auras, arkaine's valor. with arkaine's you may want to use sockets defensively (max all res runes/all res- lph jewels etc) but serpents gives huge tankiness anyway so you can use jewels as you like.

    now with our act 2 mercenary alive we have these extra auras:

    up to level 20 fanaticism aura
    up to 23 level (merc himself) or 20 level might aura
    up to 13 level concentration aura or 23 level blessed aim (merc himself) aura
    up to 25 (or 20 not sure) armor penetration aura

    in total a2 merc gives a lot of damage output to the physical characters.

    if you want to get best magic output though, you'd want to use an act 3 mercenary.

    infinity runeword can be used as a 1 handed sword (and others i may not know about) and if you combine it with malevolent runeword, you may have a decent conviction aura (up to 24 lvls). for chestpiece and helmet, you should go for maximum tankiness as you can. serpents + crown (again) would give the most tankiness i assume. helmet may change.

    right now conviction aura is underperforming due almost all end-game content mobs having resistances over 100-150 which means conviction effects only 1/4 until resistance is pierced. this will change with the new patch and conviction will pierce a stable amount regardless of immunity or not. this will bring act 3 merc on the table and probably a must for casters who wants the most damage output from their builds.

    act 1 mercenaries can have unique setups due having a bow as weapon. zephyr, etrayu etc can give them great damage outputs and cold merc freezes enemies so they also have great utility. inner sight they cast is rather weak and only "may" help characters who use attack rating and lacking it. still a great merc to start like a3 because of how cheap needed items are (etrayu etc) and they avoid face-to-face combat unlike melee mercs. a fun, end-game setup for a1 merc would be frostfire, tyrael's might and crown of high heavens. this would allow frostfire bow to give insane amounts of elemental damage to the merc due having high dexterity. also frostfire casts lower resist on striking that means more pierce for the casters.

    if you want a more defensive option, a defensive act 2 mercenary may help a lot with sustain. having a caster set weapon on him and using prayer aura merc (hell or norm combat) will get you decent health recovery.

    this is all i came up with for now. if you want more budget builds etc you can just ask me for it

    a small note: barbs can wear barb specific helms as you mentioned so skull of unclean is a decent choice for unholy might aura. unholy might aura is = ias and lifesteal. helps a bit to the summons and a good amount to the phys chars
    Last edited by nedamettin; 10-10-2017 at 04:58 AM.

  8. #8
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    Wow nice guide thanks! Will help my HxC necro summont there!
    Dont forget to say that Iron golem can be made in a item to give an extra aura, and this golem stay still until it dies (so even if you leave game, you ll keep that golem !!!)
    This said, a unique sword gives might lvl 5-8, and a 2 hand unique axe gives about lvl20 might (i cant remember names sorry) this can add cheap aura for necros Cheers!

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    nice guide, thanks!

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