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The School of Necromancy wizard has the Command Undead feature (PHB, p. 119):

Starting at 14th level, you can use magic to bring undead under your control, even those created by other wizards. As an action, you can choose one undead that you can see within 60 feet of you. That creature must make a Charisma saving throw against your wizard spell save DC. If it succeeds, you can't use this feature on it again. If it fails, it becomes friendly to you and obeys your commands until you use this feature again.

Intelligent undead are harder to control in this way. If the target has an Intelligence of 8 or higher, it has advantage on the saving throw. If it fails the saving throw and has an Intelligence of 12 or higher, it can repeat the saving throw at the end of every hour until it succeeds and breaks free.

The Nightwalker from Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes (p. 216) has 8 charisma, 6 intelligence and a CR of 20.

Isn't it a bit crazy? Outside of simply not putting this thing in the game if you have a necromancy wizard in it, what else can happen (or can the DM do) that is gonna prevent the game from breaking?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ @Erik See this FAQ for why your comment was removed. Thanks! \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Feb 9 at 22:42
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Sure, it can.

It is a bit crazy! But everything wizards do at that level is a bit crazy.

A 14th-level necromancer is, like, Sauron-tier. The point of being someone like that is precisely to call up terrible minions from the grave and terrorize the land with them. The Nightwalker is a great fit for the role of "big dumb undead minion" rather than being a boss in its own right.

What most DMs do to prevent the game from breaking is to simply not play at 14th level.

If one of your PCs is a necromancer, and you throw a Nightwalker at them, then the player wrangling the monster and yelling "Yee-haw!" from its back while they stomp around is probably the exact outcome you expect.

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  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Riding around on the back of a Nightwalker is going to be a pretty bad idea, given its Aura. \$\endgroup\$ – Erik Feb 9 at 22:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Erik Hilarity ensues. \$\endgroup\$ – Mark Wells Feb 9 at 22:41

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