THE GOB-OC ORCS ("GOBLINS")

APPEARANCE - TERRITORY - PEOPLE - DIET - WEAPONS - GOVERNMENT
PRODUCTION/TRADE -
NATURAL RESOURCES
- HISTORY

The Goblins are often treated as a race of their own, though in fact they have orcish origins and are categorized by scholars as the Gob-Oc Orcs. It was not until centuries after the Third Sarvonian War (298-203 b.S.) when rumors spread about this new race living deep under the Tandalas. The vast cave systems once created by the Ylossian dwarves had become the home to a powerful but unknown orcish nation that seized it in the aftermath of the war. Most of the tunnels used by the advancing armies were destroyed, but the Gob-Oc proved to be as determined and energetic as the dwarves in working the stone and in later centuries they reopened new routes to even greater cave systems which (at least it is said) connect nearly the whole Sarvonian North with the Tandalas.

The Goblin

View picture in full size Gnufruk Grugnak Groku, the Pathfinder. Image drawn by Faugar.

Appearance. The Gob-Oc who are said to originate from the mix of orcish armies that attacked the Santharian lands in the last Sarvonian War are said to be of small built, with slender legs and arms that hide muscles like steel wires. Their appearance is about 1.5 peds in height, however their bowed walk suggests that they’re of average orcish height but got used to narrow tunnels. Their skin color is of a dirty, dark green/brown or even grey. Their thick, dark hair is either shaved or plaited into one broad plait.

The Gob-Oc's lower jaw exceeds the dimensions of most other
orcish tribes housing two oversized tusks. People say that their ears grew bigger but this fact is unconfirmed because barely anyone except the northern guards know how big the ears of an orc usually are. It is confirmed though that in the blackness of the underworld the already sparkling and intense eyes of the orc kind increased even more into – for the underground anyway – bright globes of fire of varying hue. The eye color of the Gob-Oc varies from the common red and yellow to intense purples and greens, the brightness multiplied compared to their brothers of the northern lands.

In all the reports about Gob-Oc it became clear that they can vary very much in their appearance though the circumstances of the underground made them all become generally smaller but not necessarily weaker than their brothers.
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Territory. The Gob-Oc live in the wide caverns and tunnels of the Tandalas which they took as home after the failed campaign against Santharia in the Third Sarvonian War (298-203 b.S.). The number of settlements is unknown as are the routes and tunnels that might lead deep into Santharia or to the north. Escaped people who were enslaved by Gob-Oc raiding parties report about dozens of settlements built into great caves or carved into the stones by hand. The greatest of all is said to lie in a huge cave overseeing a lava lake.
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People. The Gob-Oc seemed to have adopted quickly to the dark world around them in ways often only encompassed by the usual underground dwellers, the dwarves. They also seemed to have developed a good sense for smithing and mining though nothing more than their war equipment ever reached the surface.

About their habits and ways of life little is known, but the mix of many different
orcish tribes has lead to a unique orcish society. Instead of strict tribal system the Gob-Oc live in a rough "democratic" society where everyone gains power by the number of followers that is willing to follow him. That somehow explains the quick adaption and expansion under the Tandalas as unsuccessful leaders were simply abandoned.

Very little is known about what role the females of the Gob-Oc tribe might have in their society in general. What is known however is that their females are rarely seen by non-tribe members. Because of this, it is assumed they, like most female orcs, live under some restriction.
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Diet. Though the Gob-Oc must have found similar sources of food like the dwarves their main supplies still seem to come from the surface. It is supposed that they’re herding livestock in some deep and hidden valleys of the Tandalas and the appearance of war bands in Northern Nermeran indicate much activity on the surface as well so hunting is most likely as well. Under the pressure of growing populations they need to fill up the storage rooms with hunting prey and maybe they found out how the dwarves tend their mushrooms fields beneath the surface and have established similar farms in their territory though this suggestion is not received too well by dwarven ears. Return to the top

Weapons. Sometimes there rumors spread that the Gob-Oc must have captured a colony of dwarves because of the fine metal works and weapons they're able to produce. While the any dwarf will strongly deny such rumors as stupid human fantasy it is a noteably statement about the quality of their weapons and armor.

The common equipment of the Gob-Oc seems to be a breast plate and a back plate over either a chain or scaled mail, with strengthened gloves and armoured leggings. Additional to that some of them bear rectangular shields. On the sparse occasions Santharians fought these orcs in their own tunnels these shields have proven perfect to enact a shield wall in a tunnel that is difficult to conuqer.

As a very warlike race the Gob-Oc quickly learned tactics usable in these closed quarters. Many Gob-Oc seem to favour no shield at all before having one in territory it only hinders them. All weapons known to orcs seem to have been slightly adjusted to fit the new needs by making them more suitable for stabbing, equipping pikes with additional hooks and making the bows shorter.
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Government. Not much is known about the government of the Gob-Oc as only warbands and at rare occasions whole armies emerge from the darkness.

Whatever the government is, it seems the orcs seem to gather for certain purposes when leaving the tunnels, always chosing someone as the leader they think most fitting, either because he’s clever, brave or most generous in dividing the loot. If a leader proves incapable or plainly unsuccessful he is simply abandoned and a new one is chosen. This system seems to work efficiently in a surrounding where a wrong decision often can mean death through starvation or other unpleasant things.

Another myth that has emerged around this strange orc kind is that the Gob-Oc erected a big city within a huge cave overseeing a huge lava lake which gives them warmth for their homes and heat for their melting pots. While most scholars doubt that, they point to old dwarven myths that tell about a dwarven city that once ruled over most of the Tandalas lying deep beneath the surface and suggesting the orcs used these ruins to establish their own capital.
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Production/Trade. To what extent the Gob-Oc trade with their northern brothers is not known as the subterran routes have never been revealed. But possibly their weapons and armor became highly praised by the Losh-Oc, their nearest northern neighbors, and possibly by the Ashz-Oc as well. Anything else, precious and rare, but not usable in the underground must be traded via these tribes, even the dark elves north of the Tandalas are possible partners when it comes to silver, precious stones and crystals.

To the south their only trade partner are trolls residing in the equally named mountains. Though they often ally on their raids it is unknown if the trolls have something worth to trade.

More disturbing are other tales about these orcs controlling a hidden link to the dungeon of Hegedorn but as with most other things about this tribe it is unconfirmed.
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Natural Resources. Ore of many different metals can be found in the deep tunnels of the Tandala as well as other raw materials precious or practical. To what extent the Gob-Oc have learned the art of mining is unknown but it seems to be enough to supply them with a good amount of fine armor and weapons. They also dig for precious stones, crystals and silver which they might trade with surface tribes.
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THE AGE OF THE BLOOD
(YEARS 822 B.S. - 50 B.S.)
257 b.S. The Rhom-Oc Orcs call for Help
The Rhom-Oc Orcs, having tasted defeat at the hands of the Susilgerim Dwarves for the first time in many years, send messengers to the other orc tribes of Northern Sarvonia. They ask for their help, and propose to wipe the dwarves (Susilgerim and Kurakim) out of Northern Sarvonia. The other Orc tribes agree to the proposal, and soon preparations for war are under way.
  

243 b.S.
to 145
The Three Hundred Year War of the North
A bloody, back and forth war ensues between the northern dwarves, orcs, and Shadow Elves for the next three hundred years. Many lives are lost on both sides, and the destructive effect on the continent is extreme. The displays of valor and might are the greatest to be seen in that area since the War of the Chosen. The many battles go back and forth, with no one gaining any clear victory.
  

203 b.S. The Great Sarvonian Victory against the Orcs
At the end of the Third Sarvonian War the orcish hordes are on the retreat. It should later be said more orcs were killed in disputes among clans than in skirmishes with other races. However, under great losses the Ashz-Oc and Losh-Oc clans return to their homelands, not without crushing any resistance they encounter on their way including dark elves and other orcs that do not run fast enough. Soon after this campaign these tribes re-establish the rule over their land without much obvious change.

On the other side orcs from tribes far away coming from destroyed lands have only the choice to stay and fight the allied forces or find a new home. Those refugees flee into the tunnels they used to overrun the north of the Tharanian kingdom, before these were discovered by allied troops and closed. While many of those perish some also find places to survive and take the deserted dungeons of the Tandalas as their new home.

THE AGE OF CHANGE
(YEARS 50 B.S. - 172 A.S.)
14 Kanapan Men join the Susilgerim Dwarves in Battle
The Kanapan Men, recognizing the disastrous effects a dwarven defeat would mean in the Three Hundred Year War of the North, enter the conflict on the side of the dwarves.
  

93 Susilgerim Dwarves examine Keralkorim Writings in Ximax
The Susilgerim dwarves send a group of the most highly magically-gifted among them to Ximax to see if they can gain the knowledge necessary to understand the magical Keralkorim writings. The greatest among this group is Kograv Mountainshaker. The dwarven party brings with them copies of the Keralkorim writings. The ships are provided by the Kurakim Dwarves, and soon they are underway.
  

145 The Grand Battle of Imlith
After over fifty years, the Susilgerim Kograv the dwarven mage and his companions return from their journey to Ximax. Upon reaching Northern Sarvonia, they find the Susilgerim and Kurakim Dwarves surrounded in the midst of a cataclysmic battle against the orcs and Shadow Elves upon the Heaths of Wilderon. They immediately put their newly learned skills to use in saving the dwarves from destruction, winning the day. After a hard night of hurried preparation, the mages prepare for their ultimate test against the Moh'rhim Shadow Elves. This is the greatest contest of magical prowess seen in the area in several thousand years. The battle continues unceasingly through three days and three nights. On the fourth day, Kograv is the only mage left alive. The Moh'rhim also have lost many of their people. But the power of their queen is great, and threatens still to destroy the dwarves.

As the battle looks bleak, Kograv from his knees raises a heartfelt prayer to Trum-Barol for deliverance in their despair. Suddenly he feels a surge of magical energy through him. Standing up once again, he focuses his energy on the queen of the Moh'rhim, and delivers a blast of pure energy at her. This blast severely wounds her, and is powerful enough to dissipate her corporeal form. This causes her, and the rest of her people, to be swept away back into the Shadow Marshes. The dwarves rally and defeat the confused and bewildered orcs, achieving a final victory. The orcs are all driven back to their own lands, and the dwarves regain control of their mountains.

THE GOLDEN AGE OF KINGS
(YEARS 172 A.S. - 547 A.S.)
ca. 300 Orcs emerging from the Dark
The mix of many orcish clans has developed into a more or less unified tribe. Beside the known raids and assaults by Losh-Oc warbands also other orcs are reported to attack and pillage the northern borderlands since decades. While their origin is unknown and most people see in all orcs evil vermin this marks a startling shift in the balance in the north where the border is said to be pacified for centuries now.
  

488 The Troll War
Raids and assaults have increased over the years in most parts of the north of the Santharian Kingdom. Though most fights seem to be only random encounters the borderlines are heavily tested. In the spring of 488 an army of orcs, presumably Gob-Ocs, emerges from the Troll Mountains, far away from the border guards and attacks and raids the city of Acht. About 6.000 greenskins in unknown armour and under unknown flags, supported by several troll clans loot the countryside and are on the retreat before any army can be gathered to counter the danger. Only days later a part of this army stands before the city of Holm. While quickly rallied troops under the command of the Lord of Holm can force the orcs to retreat, the Lord and many men die when they chase the orcs into the valleys of the Troll Mountains where they run into a trap set by the retreating army.

Before the orcs can plan a new campaign, finally reinforcements from Jernais and Astran arrive and the orcish army is defeated the next year. The remaining orcs flee through tunnels in which the human forces can only follow under great loss of life. The orcs disappear in the darkness and Ximaxian mages spend half a year to collapse 80 strals of tunnels in hope to close this opening forever. (Writer's note: the trolls that fled with the orcs after their defeat are no longer among the Kloighut and may instead be found in the Tandalas as the Ghereghut.)
  

523 An Uncontained Threat: The Gob-Oc
The Gob-Oc prove formidable in reopening tunnels and connecting tunnel systems. Years after the first Troll War, rumors spread about orcs taking settlements in the Troll Mountains or the sparse populated hills farther south, obviously from tunnel entrances not used since the Third Sarvonian War. As the places lie deep within the wilderness and the orcs prove to be tough fighters as well as hunters the wilderness north of Doovens and west of Veltins is often accounted as the most dangerous place of Santharia and in many maps marked as disputed territory.

Though the Gob-Oc take no offensive moves since their first appearance this area becomes a thorn in the side of the provinces of Nerman and Vardýnn who fear for their settlements and further campaigns against these orcs often end in disaster without any decisive change in the situation.

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