Orcs are an interesting bunch. Their appearance varies as well. I remember this as the classic D&D Orc many years ago.

pig faced orcs.jpg

(Pinterest, Dead Simple RPG Blog. Otherworld Minatures)

They are normally a force of evil and tend to be more in the monster tables than available as player characters. The good thing about role play games though is sometimes, if you want to play an evil sadistic and violent character then you can! Computer game Skyrim features Orcs as a race, how you play them, good or evil is up to you. Middle Earth Role Playing has them as a dastardly bunch and has done up a racial bonus table for them so if you wish to, you can. The GM can make it as easy or difficult for you to play one depending largely on where in Middle Earth the game is set and also the time period. Anything Fourth Age would in my book, be free rein as the events of Lord of the Rings have been and gone and Middle Earth would be very different from the one we know.

Orcs tend to have bonuses that take in their natural strength and also legendary constitution. With this in mind Orcs make for excellent fighters and warriors!

orcs uruk.jpg

(Pixabay, Tunechick 83.)

Playing as an Orc can be great fun if it can be accommodated into the setting. Tribal in nature, almost in some ways similar to playing a human Barbarian but with the ability to withstand an awful lot of punishment.

Does your Orc have to be evil though? Perhaps your particular Orc is on a road to redemption?  It feels misunderstood by the rest of the world and would like to shake off the image that all Orcs are bad? The  Orcs! trilogy by Stan Nicholls tries things from an Orcs point of view as does Mary Gentle with Grunts! I’m still waiting for someone to play an Orc Animist or even a Bard. I bet I could in Skyrim.

One comment

  1. Orcs are the best… Where I come from, they were probably the most reliable race, if you could be seen as worth their time. Their sense of honor is incredibly strong, but they tend to look down their tusks at those they considered ‘weak’. If you could get yourself in as part of their tribe or clan in their eyes, then you had the best protection in the world.

    There was an older Orcess who saw me as a grandson, and after I had to defect to the Human city, she went through blackmarket channels to send her one of her riding wolf’s pups. She said it was a runt, like me, so maybe we’d figure out how to fix that together. It’s pretty awesome having a puppy that stands taller than a hunting hound.

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