This morning I read Arnold K’s “Dungeon Hacker” class on Goblin Punch.

I love it. Let me tell you why.

Necromancers are a weird mixed bag of tricks who are portrayed inconsistently in fiction — well, usually they’re evil, that part tends to be pretty consistent — but their powers veer all over the spectrum.

I read this class, the “Dungeon Hacker,” and a clear image coalesces in my mind: the necromancer as a security specialist. So many of those weird “universal” spells that wind up in the spell section of the book can be reclassified as necromancy.

Like “Knock.”

Because the simple explanation is that a ghost did it. For a wizard.

It gives you the opportunity to connect all of a dungeon’s security measures, from scrying sensors to locked doors to lethal traps, into a really weird (and linked) high-security system. In some ways, it makes a necromancer a “magic-using thief.”

And this is actually pretty close to the “conjures the dead” idea of a necro-MANCING necromancer. Summoning ghosts to do little things. Cutesy tricks.

I like it in part because a wizard doing tricksy things with ghosts to bypass security overlaps with, but doesn’t eliminate the need for, thieves. It just puts the safe-cracking skills in the hands of a squishy nerd.

There’s still plenty of conceptual room for a ruthless, backstabbing rogue.

Speak With Dead turns every corpse you discover into a computer terminal. It has limited information based on who the corpse was, and where it’s found.

Reminiscent of Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura.

Now compare all of this to the reanimator, which is another, wholly distinct, expression of necromancy. Reanimators instill motion in things using a variety of methods, whether it’s spirits of the dead, or bound elemental spirits.