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My Necropolis completion run without Aegon, Kate or Shuri

Hello! In this post i wanted to share my experience of going in Necropolis easy path (Titania>Guardian) without one of the most popular options, that community/content creators usually recommend using for you first entry.
Hope it supports anyone in need of advice for their completion and helps understand what it takes to finish this new piece of endgame content.
I by myself was in search for anything regarding experience going in easy path with Zemo, could not find anything except for spreadsheet from KT1.
Btw if anyone is interested, my main inspirations for the team came from Kataremike's run with Zemo and Shuri in path 2 (Mr. Fantastic > Apocalypse) and Normax solo run with Wong. Links:

For a bit of context: I think of myself as slightly above average player (reaching GC almost regularly as full FTP).
Here's the team i used:

6 star R5 Unascended Baron Zemo ; 6 star R5 Unascended Juggernaut ; 7 star R2 Wong ; and 2 additional Zemo's on the team for bleed potency.
Baron Zemo awakening is irrelevant for this run, Juggernaut is sig 40 for 2.5% chance of nullify per unstoppable charge, Wong is unawakened.

Notable masteries: Deep wounds 5/5, Recovery 3/3, Pacify 3/3, Inequity 3/3.
I don't think Inequity is that important for this particular run, yet its worth mentioning that having opponents attack reduced by more than 30% basically all the time with guys like Zemo/Shuri/Diablo/"insert the name of endgame debuffer you like" is OP.

Preparation for this run started several weeks in advance, including revive farming and gathering of resources for important rank ups. Every day i have run apothecary, but obviously for FTP it is not near enough for good full run, so in mean time i did a lot of manual farming in 5.4.6 and autoplay of Back Issues on classic difficulty, 3.1 of Arachnid Action to be precise.
Lots of places across act 4-5 exist that are eligible to farm revives, and they are about to be nerfed again in middle of January right after Road to Crypt ends. If you want to do the run, best time to start revive farming is NOW or pretty much never.
I also had 11k units in my back, ready in case of emergency. As well as more than 200 paragon crystals for potions.

The run

The path starts with Titania, and best option against her without doubt is Zemo. Of course you could try to replicate Normax's success with Wong against her, but i don't see the reason why you would do this to yourself.
Zemo did the fight with 1 revive. The key here is to limit amount of dashes you do and try to corner Titania as much as possible, in order to limit amount of her medium dashes she does. Remember that AI is programmed to start the combo with light attack if you are close to them, and medium dash in case if you are far away. I recommend to practice this fight until you are comfortable with destroying atleast 50% hp in one run.

Against Vision Aarkus i took Wong and it was messy. It took me MANY revives before i got tempo of the fight and adequate AI that would not throw sp3 to my face because of bad mood or something. The only cosmic fihgt i would not recommend Wong for.
Yet its still worth mentioning that aside from sp3, this fight basically poses 0 danger to Wong. Getting to 3 green spells = immortality
And with the rate of how frequently you will be getting damaged by coldsnap, you will never have trouble with eldritch energy. I basically punished every sp1 of Aarkus i could with heavy not just because it was smart way to cycle and ramp, but also because i just had power overflow basically at all times.
Remember that Wong has fate seal on sp3, and even if it doesn't stick, it will remove all power gains and give you like 20 seconds of chilling that might help you stabilize.
Btw 25-30% hp is enough for start of this fight for reasons of Wong being op against energy dmg. Don't waste your potions here, since its basically question of "will he throw sp3 or not" all the time anyway. Once you get to 3 green + 3 blue the hp stops mattering.

Omega Sentinel is just pure cheese with Wong. I did this in FIRST TRY and SOLO'ED it! By far easiest fight for Wong in entire path and probably entire Necropolis. Sentinel just gains too many buffs to the point where you will literally play sp2's back to back all the time.
And since her special dmg is all energy, we are immortal here.

Air-Walker was, not hard?? Who could have seen that coming huh? The big bad that a lot of people had problem with ended up being a matter of 1 revive for Wong. What can i say, the guy simply doesn't have power gain as insane as Aarkus and that really helps.
Don't be shy to do heavy attacks with Wong in middle of the combo, if that saves you from him getting Galactus blessing.

Captain Britain is another pure cheese with Wong. Psionic girl does energy dmg literally with every single attack, so having 3 green spells equals immortality, but with a catch... If Britain gets a lot of prowess and crits on special (and she crits with high chance) you will be dead on first connected hit, so be sure to always block specials and try to not be fancy with dexing. Also reverse controls might require getting used to, but honestly they weren't a big deal. Used 4 revives.

Wiccan might be little more problematic than average "energy dmg = immortality" fight due to Wiccan's ability to heal a lot on sp1.
Try your best at pushing him to sp2 and pray that he casts it right away. Because if he doesn't, it might take eternity for you to bait it out. Overall not hard. 4 or 5 revives used.

Psycho-man actually was smooth experience for me with Zemo. I thought keeping up with his "prompts" would be hard, but it actually is pretty simple. If prompt of special attack lines up with yeallow box its bad time, and unblockable specials with blue box hurt a lot, but it is still not the worst out there. 6 revives

Now here is when fun begins... Guardian is the worst for my comp, since my 2 main dmg dealers rely on bleed and energy dmg, and he is resistant to BOTH. Thankfully i r5'ed my Juggernaut for a reason.
Yes, i used Juggernaut in Necropolis as cheap-away option and it worked. But it wasn't an incredible experience at all, so i wouldn't recommend anyone repeat this revive fiesta.
Good news: if you are good with Juggernaut and have high rarity Juggs relic, you might not even need to heal him at all and just spam 20% revives all the way until Guardian is down.
Bad news: Its horrible fight for Juggernaut specifically with autoblock ruining your day left and right.
If you end up with same team as me, forced to go with Juggs, my advice is to heal up and try your best at controlling armor up effects as much as possible, because if you let them build up too much you will have to try to hit the block, and with Juggs unblockable this might be pretty problematic.
(no footage since i forgor to take screenshot)

Another revive fiesta is with Valkyrie, except i didn't not expect this fight to be so problematic when i theorized about it.
Dealing with pierce is alright, pushing Valk to sp2 to pause the pierce is fine, all of this should work well right??
I was thinking that way so just jumped in with Zemo. Oh boy. As soon as charges dropped below 75, fight became so ugly its not even funny.
Trying to dex all hits of Valkyrie sp2 under root is absolute nightmare, and sp1? Forget about it unless if you aren't MSD or some kind of god-gamer. And let me tell you, dexing 9 hits out of 10 is NOT AN OPTION. You will die even if 1 hit connects to your block.
Which leads me to this situation: Valkyrie hitting 75 charges = death. Learning to dex her sp1 under the root will drain my stash more than Kabam's greed, so i decided that i will have to try to do as much dmg as possible in first set of charges. ITS JUGGS TIME AGAIN
And here we go again, except this time the death is more guaranteed, yet doing dmg with Juggs here is easier since no autoblock is bothering you. Don't heal up, just use 20% revives and try to do as much dmg as possible in 1,5 minutes you have.

Red Guardian is straight forward with Zemo. You will just have to parry>heavy a lot and try your best to manage proc of fractured shield into either special or relic. 6 revives.

Sam Wilson is type of fight, where if it works you will have good time, and if it doesn't its gonna feel real bad. But ultimately its good matchup for Zemo. Be careful with hitting into block, and try to proc root from cleanses as much as possible by doing sp1 and not just basic hits. The trick here is to force Sam to autoblock last hit of sp1 and root him at this exact moment, in order for him to always be "armor-up-less" when you start stacking bleeds. That's important because of Sam Wilson's chance to fail bleed effects with each armor up. Also remember that this Flying Cap is awakened, so each time bleed fails you will suffer burst of direct dmg.
You may think that you can wait lock-on out and not suffer, but you just don't. Trust me. 5 revives.
Note: Normax solo'd this fight with Wong, but in his replay Sam was getting indestructible buffs from trap node which significantly helps (especially for awakened Wong) to build up eldritch energy under blue spell. I'm pretty sure this fight is not solo'able without that trap node.

Dragon-man is easy solo with Wong as long as robot plays ball with specials. I was not able to find right tempo until... i failed power gain with pacify mastery. Dragon man just lost his power gain for rest of the fight, and then Wong just bullyied metal reptile.
5 revives.

Captain america IW. Oh yes, nothing matters here as long as Steve just throws specials. 2 main problems of this fight are glancing and concussion debuffs that you get by removing 5 kinetic charges at once. And Zemo doesn't care about both.
Bleeds dmg goes through glancing, and concussions are not only constantly purified, but also failed to apply thanks to reduced ability accuracy that we stack from disorients on sp1. Very straight forward fight. 3 revives, can be done with 2.

Nova got rekt by Wong and it wasn't even close. First try solo. Literally only thing worth mentioning is to not throw sp2 right away after heavy and wait unstoppable out, because of Nova's ability to reduce dmg from unblockable specials.

Nameless Grandmaster. The culmination of the entire Necropolis. The big bad that awaits you every time you finish a path.
What is it that you are about to face?
Well that's pretty much just regular Grandmaster, just with couple of trick to pay attention to. Honestly enjoyable fight, with one exception, but i will get tot that.
First of all: i think that you definitely need a reverse control counter to matter what path you take, because phase 4 is its own revive sink without it.
Second: i think having a strong dmg dealer that can just dish out dmg without playing by the "rules" is good idea that should not be discarded. Right now Aegon is best at it.

Alright let's talk about what is actually happing in phases!
Phase 1: The ruleset prohibits usage of light attacks, parry and dex. You trigger them 1 or 2 times and after that you will get penalties. Also we have new challenge with RED and GREEN lights.
Basically you have to pay attention to notifications and specific icon, and once REDA light appears you have to stop moving.
Just an attention game, my advice is to not rush to swipe at the end of RED. Don't panic, GM won't recover as soon as light switches.
If you are scared you can try to time RED with you going away from GM to have safe distance when light switches.
The real change here IMO is you getting competence through combo enders only. This means: heavy bait is your bread and butter.
Since dex and parry will be banned, your only true reliable option to search for opening is heavy baiting. Also you can try to be intercept god, but honestly its just little bit too risky compared to heavy baiting.

Phase 2: now each prompt that you see will appear with "Grandmaster says" or without it. If message appears, you should do the prompt, if not avoid it and get permanent grey competence.
Honestly very straight forward phase. Be aggressive and try to deal with as many sp1's as you can.

Yeah..... remember me talking about revive sinks? This was biggest one for me. I don't know if this is skill issue, or if it is just bad luck, or bad design..... what i do know is that i DID NOT HAVE FUN AT ALL.
Basically now GM gains power passively, applies reverse controls and also gets "Grandmaster says" from previous phase. Sounds easy enough, right?
Well guys, all of this is sunshine and butterflies only if Grandmaster actually does something instead of just standing there.
The only way to get GM to wounded phase here is to survive 5 prompts, regardless if they had "Grandmaster says". And surviving is insanely hard. First of all, now AI is extremely defensive and will push itself to sp2 a lot. So even if you don't have reverse control immunity, you will get cheap-damaged till you have like 3% hp left. This sounds more fair than sp2 just oneshoting you, but trust me it barely makes things any easier.
Now here's the real catch: the prompts. The real dealbreaker here. Remember how absence of "Grandmaster says" means that you are supposed to avoid doing the prompt to get grey competence? Well now imagine how "easy" it is to not do 5 dashes back when you are at 3% hp and AI slowly corners you. Incredible right? But wait here's more! Not doing "stay still for couple of seconds" is literally impossible without screwing entire tempo of the match here))) Why? Well because dashing furiously back will inevitably corner you, and cornering GM will result in his power gain skyrocketing to levels of freaking Hyperion. Good luck surviving that.
Oh and don't forget stuff like "do X amount of hits into block". For some reason every time i got this prompt GM magically awakened from defensive slumber and guess what? HE STARTED TO ACTUALLY ACT AGGRESSIVE.
... I can describe thousand more ways how this stupid phase can screw you, but ultimately it all boils down to one question: what was your experience with original GM's third phase? If answer is "INTENSIVE SREAMING" then bring cheap away option for this specific moment. If you don't mind, then reverse control immunity might be enough.
This was one and only moment when i envied Aegon users.
Note: Exclusively to this phase i experienced inflated reaction time from GM. There was one time when guy literally threw sp2 right when he was close to me in my corner of arena... and i still got intercepted when i tried to punish him after recovering.

Phase 4: Well that was actually refreshing after all chaos. Trying to do 3 different specials with all additional power gain from grey competence is actually fun. I didn't even test what would happen if i did not bring Juggernaut. I can only imagine the pain of trying to deal with reverse controls appearing and reappearing on every action. Thankfully Juggs was here just exactly for that.

My feelings about Necropolis: i actually liked it! With exception of GM fight, i really enjoyed my time here. Despite the fact that i had to spend 3 times more revives for one run than for one carina challenge in EOP, i had more fun here somehow.
If you bring right counters to your path, game turns into fullfilling and ecstatic experience.

Math at the end
I can't tell you exactly how many revives i used, but according to my estimations the count is somewhere inbetween 95-110.
The reason why the number is vague is due to paragon 4 hour crystals giving me unusual amounts of 40% revives and me losing count on some revive fiestas. All i can say, is that wasting 100 revives for average player is sort of realistic expectation at this point.

Also i used around of 50-60 4 hour Paragon crystals for potions, on top of already builded stash of mainly level 4 revives + some other junk.
I think auto-farming level 3 potions in ROL is good idea in preparation for Necropolis run, since in a lot of fights having full hp actually helps surviving longer and doing more dmg. Also hp matters in pretty much every phase of GM fight, maybe in exception of phase 2 IMO.

What would be my advice?
After watching all streamers do a **** tonn of solo's with Kate, i'm convinced that she is better than Zemo for pretty much everything, except for path 2 (Mr Fantastic one) and couple of debuff matchups. If i were to freely choose, Kate would be in my team instead of Zemo.
However that doesn't mean that you can't replicate my run or that its worst one. I heard some people got stuck on Air-Walker, on Omega Sentinel, that some people got dunked by Nova and i'm glad that Wong took good care of them. I think its wise for you guys to form your own strategy by gathering as much info as you can, to have best experience at the end.
Don't play Zemo like Karatemike did unless if you don't run recoil like him. The best strat for Zemo by default if to spam sp1 after you ramped all the bleeds to prolong the fight. Not only you literally get free ticks while animation is playing, but also sp1 feeds your striker meter.
Unexpectedly i used a lot of boosts throughout entire thing. You should not underestimate the length of the Necropolis run and respect time it takes to grind those healthpools. Be sure to have a stash of boosts ready. Without them many solo's could be harder/impossible with R2 Wong and unascended Zemo.
Speaking of ascension: i think its important as hell to have your champs maxed for this content. R5 ascended should be your standart, unless if you don't bring the champs solely for phase 4 of GM or if it is not synergy member. 7 stars preferably should be R2, though it matters less for them since they will have more time to dish out numbers.
Take breaks or revive count will go higher according to your level of exhaustion.
Heal first > boost after (this won't be important after potion update)

Again i hope it helps you in your Necropolis adventure. Atleast that's what i tell myself to justify all the suffering from phase 3 )
GL and HF


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    ReignkingTWReignkingTW Posts: 2,712 ★★★★★
    Wow that's a lot to digest on my phone but I'll get to it. Congrats!
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