Santharian Development

Santharian World Development => Races, Tribes and Clans => Topic started by: Koldar Mondrakken on 12 December 2003, 16:47:00

Title: Concerning orcs... ;)
Post by: Koldar Mondrakken on 12 December 2003, 16:47:00
Well, I thought while we have to consider what we want to know about the races and how they differ from each other it wouldn't be a bad thing to post what I've in my head now that I'm here. Please do not consider this a definite in the sense that nothing would/could/should be changed.  I think when we write up all main races we find opportunities and concepts to show differences that clearly show the different world views of the races so to engineer each race more uniquely.
Thus here just a short and rough question answer list on that topic. Maybe we find more questions to ask that way and eventually even more answers.

Also don't think I answer all question well enough so excuse me when you find holes in my explanations.

What I think about Orcs is mainly that they behave the way they do for a reason and this reason is a completely different morale basis than humans, dwarves or elves share.

- What makes an orc to an orc?
I think no other race has such an urge for power and self-destruction. Growing in power is not seen as something concerning a nation but as the very drive of every sentient being. This urge for power gives an orc great strength and endurances and overcome all obstacles to gain a prize and  still, he might lose everything in a blink of an eye as someone else has found his opportunity to rise and backstabs him at the most inconvenient time. This creates a system where chaos becomes predictable though only orcs might understand it.

- What is the self-image of this race?
Actually often they don't have one. The individuals of this race will more often than not see themselves and their closest relatives as the only allies and everyone else as someone to fight sooner or later. Family often just means that you'll fight it later than sooner. Where there's something like tribal identity (like among Ashz-Oc or Gob-Oc) they'll see themselves as superior to anyone else in Caelereth mainly because combat strength is what defines the greatness of an individual.

- How do other races see this race?
Most will see orcs as barbaric, destructive, wild beasts, with no rules or boundaries as chaos and force is part of their system. Dangerous is also something most would describe them and all too often irrational in behaviour though that's more because they only accept force not kind words when it comes to decide their actions.

- General appearance.
From larger than a dwarf to smaller than a human (1.5-1.8peds min/max), but broader and more muscular than humans.
Sharp teeth clawlike fingers.
Skin colour brown over green to gray/black
eye colour brown to yellow to red to purple

Orcs can regenerate even from wounds that would be deadly for most others and their skin is thick enough to protect them against most weather and even to some degree from weapons. Imagine a light leather curaiss covering your whole body.

- Personality.

Aggressive pack behaviour. Everyone has his place in a hierachical system and can only rise or prevail through challenge. No excuses, no apologies and an orc will only obey to a greater show of force than he has himself. It sounds violent but in fact think about wolves here. Fights will only occure where two opponents think they're equally strong or stronger than their counterpart. Otherwise there's always a smaller and a bigger fish in the pond. While giving in to a stronger opponent they'd never surrender to one, so trying too force an orc to do something is like driving a wounded bear into a corner. Fear and panic is also unknown to an orc, it is replaced by rage.

In short: Orcs can retreat but not surrender. They won't run away but just accept it and give in thus withdraw when someone proves stronger than them

- How differs the political system, is there something special elvish other races have not?
Their power systems are always hierachical, power is determined by personal strength and amount of allies(supposed and real). In the end such systems appear very self-balancing as always when someone claims the throne his allies will turn against him to destroy the greatest threat to their own rise. Traditions might take the bloody edge out of it but do not change this rule. While Ashz-Oc wouldn't kill a leader when he gets old, he'll nevertheless lose all his influence as he loses his personal strength. Though orcs do not grow weak that fast.

- How do the religious believes differ from the other races?

Difficult to tell, still unsure about that one. Even if every orc has the same/similar belief....

- What are the philosophical believes and differences to other races concerning their attitude to life , death and other important issues?

Life is everything, death is nothing, you only have this one life to ignite a flame  of glory that will burn for generations or disappear like a candle in the wind. Someone without a great life won't be remembered. Death is not feared, it is a risk you've to take if you want to get somewhere. Like fire orcs don't live in the future or in the past, they live in the present and don't care about tomorrow.

- How spread is the race in general in the world of Caelereth, is the race sedentary, nomadic, aggressive, peaceful?
Widespread among the northern continents, non-existant/rare in the south.The physiology of orcs allows them to survive in territory where humans could not. Why they do not live in the south is unknown.

- What is the race's relation to magic and how important is it in every day life - how is it used and to what extent?
magic is not used much, usually only by healers and wise men. Shamans are a different matter as interpreters of divine will.

- What is the importance of art, of beauty in general, of trying to find ways to express one's self, are there major cultural achievements?
Orcs are purists, the greatest achievement of an orc is when he becomes a legend.

other stats
-Hypothetical I think orcs could very well get as old as humans, maybe older, however their lifestyle cuts their life expectancy to 40 years or less. But don't be fooled, this doesn't mean they couldn't get 80, they just don't survive that long on average.

I always thought that it might be interesting that it is normal for orcs to give birth to more than two children every time. this could easily explain an extraordinary population growth only contained by a high child mortality and a high death rate thanks to non-natural causes.

Orcs are carnivoures, other than other races they actually need meat to survive. Among some tribes bread or similar is known but usually only to fill the stomach, it's nothing an orc can live from over an extended period of time. Their teeth as well as their metabolism suits them well in this respect and orcs could eat even flesh from which ahuman most certainly would die, which doesn't mean they'd like it compared to a bloody piece of fresh meat.

Sorry for my aweful English in places, this is just a rough answer to Talia's question and far from set in stone or completely thought through.

Koldar Mondrakken, Knight of the Moonlight

Edited by: Koldar Mondrakken at: 1/7/04 10:57

Title: Re: Concerning orcs... ;)
Post by: Viresse on 12 December 2003, 22:46:00
wao- Koldar, thsi is great!
It makes a lot of sense.
I'd love to do one for elves.
Perhaps Wren should do it though.

Maybe I can do Dark Elves.
yea, that'd be cool.

Anyway, Koldar, I like the way you laid this out. It makes Orcs more real to me than they were before.

*pokey de Viresse at* - Adventures of Caelereth Administrator
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