Animate Dead

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School of Earth Magic
Symbol for School of Earth Magic
Level 1
 Magic Arrow *
 Stone Skin
 View Earth
Level 2
 Death Ripple
 Visions *
Level 3
 Animate Dead
 Force Field
 Protection from Earth
Level 4
 Meteor Shower
 Town Portal
Level 5
 Summon Earth Elemental
School of Air Magic
School of Fire Magic
School of Water Magic
Animate Dead
School:  Earth Magic
Level:  3rd
Cost:  15/12
Duration:  permanent
 Basic effect
Reanimates (30 + (power × 50)) health points worth of killed undead creatures in target, allied troop.
 Advanced effect
Reanimates (60 + (power × 50)) health points worth of killed undead creatures in target, allied troop.
 Expert effect
Reanimates (160 + (power × 50)) health points worth of killed undead creatures in target, allied troop.
 Probability of occurrence (%):
Castle   0
Rampart   0
Tower   0 (0*)
Inferno   0
Necropolis   44
Dungeon   0
Stronghold   0
Fortress   0
Conflux   0
Cove Horn of the Abyss   0
Factory Horn of the Abyss   0
* Without Library

Animate Dead is a 3rd level spell in the School of Earth Magic. It permanently reanimates killed undead, allied units similar to Resurrection spell. However, unlike Resurrection, the effect is always permanent regardless of whether the hero has Earth Magic or on what level it is.

Heroes starting with Animate Dead:

Heroes specialising in Animate Dead:

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Some may find the information in this section subjective or irrelevant.

The number of HP restored by Animate Dead and Resurrection is almost equal. Both give 50 times spell power at all levels. The flat bonus for Basic/Advanced/Expert level is 30/60/160 for Animate Dead and 40/80/160 for Resurrection, giving Resurrection a slight edge before Expert level. Note that Resurrection costs more spell points to cast and its effect is only permanent with at least Advanced Earth Magic.

Animate dead has a 44% probability to show up in Necropolis' Mage Guild which is a lot higher than the chance for Resurrection (Stronghold and Fortress have 0% chance, Cove and Conflux 10% and all others 20%; Tower with a Library has 29%). Additionally, Animate Dead is level 3 while Resurrection is level 4. Thus, in the early game Necropolis has a much higher chance to be able to revive its creatures. With multiple cities, the chance to obtain the spell increases (assuming an average of 20% probability for Resurrection per town and only Necropolis cities for Animate Dead):

Number of
Probability for
Animate Dead
Probability for
Base % 44% 20%
2 69% 36%
3 82% 49%
4 90% 59%
5 94% 67%
6 97% 74%
7 98% 79%
8 99% 83%

As can be seen, one would need about 3/5/8 cities to have the same chance to learn Resurrection as with 1/2/3 Necropolis cities to learn Animate Dead. Note that it is less likely for Necropolis to capture another Necropolis city than for another faction to capture a city other than Stronghold and Fortress. Thus, in the mid- and late-game, obtaining Resurrection will be likely for any player.

The spell can appear only in Necropolis mage guild or on the adventure map (scholars or magic shrines). Basically Animate Dead is a better version of Resurrection, because its casting cost is cheaper and as a level three spell it is easier to acquire. It "resurrects" undead creatures as efficiently as Resurrection resurrects alive creatures. Naturally, the downside is that Animate Dead is only usable to undead creatures.