Familiar with a female Wizard
Familiar is a Conjuration Wizard skill unlocked at Level 22, summoning a companion that fights along beside the caster.
This skill creates a small glowing object that hovers beside the character, like a shoulder-mounted aura. The familiar is not a creature or a fairy or anything with personality or identity. It's more like a tool or a gun that hovers along beside the Wizard, fires projectiles at enemies, and provides some additional buff.
It's not an interesting or pretty spell; just a useful one.
A Familiar assists in the killing, but does not distract monsters from their own attacks. It's merely a visual representation of the buff it provides.
Refer to the Familiar rune effects article for thorough descriptions of all five rune effects in this skill, including screenshots, videos, strategy tips, and other related information.
<skill class="Wizard" rune="Sparkflint">Familiar</skill>
<skill class="Wizard" rune="Icicle">Familiar</skill>
<skill class="Wizard" rune="Ancient Guardian">Familiar</skill>
<skill class="Wizard" rune="Arcanot">Familiar</skill>
<skill class="Wizard" rune="Cannoneer">Familiar</skill>
The Familiar assists the Wizard in battle, attacking enemies at range for 2 minutes. The monsters, on the other hand, ignore the Familiar and can not hurt it.
The following Wizard passives provide a benefit to Familiar, runed or not:
<skill class="Wizard">Glass Cannon</skill>
<skill class="Wizard">Arcane Dynamo</skill>
Familiar was added in BlizzCon 2010 as a Tier 7 skill, presumably responding to some need of the Wizard. Unfortunately, it was at too high a level to play.
Skill tiers were removed for the July 2011 Press Event, allowing skills to unlock steadily from levels 1 to 30. Consequently, all skill levels were adjusted and Familiar became a level 27 skill.
The Diablo III Beta started in September 2011, and while it ran, all of the skills continued to undergo extensive iteration. Skill changes varied from changing the levels the skills are unlocked, to changes in resource cost, damage, and even function. A few skills were removed altogether, and a few new ones were added. Also, the entire skill system received an overhaul with the Beta Patch 13 update in February 2012, with physical runes replaced by rune effects that automatically unlock at various levels for the different skills.
Familiar was moved to level 24 early in the beta. With the Patch 13 changes, it was classified as a Conjuration skill and moved back up to level 27. For March's Beta Patch 14, Familiar was dropped to level 22.
Familiar has always been too high level to play, so there are no pre-release gameplay reports of it.
Familiar can be seen in action on video here:
You can find pictures in the Diablo III screenshot and picture gallery: