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UPGRADING ORCS! Mixing Orc Tribes with the Song Empire!

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--- Quote from: SHARK on May 22, 2022, 05:44:58 PM ---I refrained from crafting a wholly-transformed Orc society, but instead created three main cultural responses--some would embrace fully, another group would embrace new knowledge in a limited degree, and a third faction would be hyper-conservative, and reject the "Ways of the Foreigners!"

The potentials are very interesting, I think. What kind of elements and dynamics do you think would be good to establish?

Have you considered such enormous cultural transitions in your own campaigns? For Orcs in particular, but not necessarily limited to just Orcs. In other regions, I have other kinds of more or less traditional Orcs, along with some variations. This major cultural shifting dynamic is restricted to this particular region of Orcs in my campaign setting of Thandor.
--- End quote ---

I've been developing out the northern reaches of the Solar Empire in the setting I'm helping create, Land of New Horizons, which is inspired by the Incans and surrounding civilizations. Cultural transition is a major aspect of my current campaign.

In the setting, the Solar Empire has different mixes of races in different quarters, just as ethnic Incas were only a fraction of the population of the Incan empire. I've explained that orcs have been integrated into the mix of races. In the north, there were a bunch of scattered kingdoms - the Dragon Lords were a set of dragonborn feudal-ish kings, and the empire has started to unite them. Orcs have been incorporated into the empire as the most militant faction.

I haven't detailed much about orcs in the empire yet. Maybe I'll try to bring some into the next adventure. As I picture, they would be classically barbaric and gung-ho about fighting, but the ones inducted into the empire are generally loyal. On the other hand, there are still plenty of orcs outside the empire who hate the ones who joined.


--- Quote from: VisionStorm on May 23, 2022, 04:50:10 PM ---
--- Quote from: HappyDaze on May 22, 2022, 05:55:21 PM ---Are your orcs capable of breeding with humans? This can make a big difference.

--- End quote ---

That's what I thought as well. Another question would be: are these Orcs smart enough to even understand or make use of this advanced knowledge? If not this entire thing might be a moot point, since they might be too dumb to even appreciate to intellectual treasure trove that has been handed to them.

But if they can interbreed with humans and make up the difference in brain power that way, that opens up some possibilities for a new breed of intellectual half-orc and an advanced orc-blooded civilization. Mixing the brutality of the orc with human genius.

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Yes, my friend. In the world of Thandor, Orcs can breed with humans, thereby creating Half-Orcs.

An advanced Orc-blooded civilization. Yeah, it is a scary proposition! *laughing*

Semper Fidelis,



--- Quote from: bromides on May 23, 2022, 01:43:02 PM ---I do like this concept in general.
It's a legitimate civilization-threatening type of event, when the Monster can take from the world of Men, and forge something newer and harder (especially in the face of Man's decadence).

If culture, as a concept, is critical to the game world, then coming up with threats to culture would be of primary importance. Fun games and concepts require this sort of thing, and the concept seems sound (especially in the historical record, like the Mongols taking experts from conquered peoples to help them to conquer others).

If culture is not to be a theme, then it's best not to cross the streams and defy expectations too much, I think.

IMO, Orcs are inherently "Chaotic Evil" (like the Drow, allegedly, or whatever they are today).

Having the foresight to organize the conquered into a useful tool is beyond the Orc, in that purist cultural strain view of things.
What is an Orc, after all? If they aren't the embodiment of a "failed society", are they even "Orc"?

Once you lose that part of the Orc, they cross over into something else... the Hobgoblin, I guess, in DnD terms.
Maybe that's just definitions, and I have too rigid a view of the Orc.

My favorite orc was in a murder hobo game, and the DM presented an orc captive who then proceeded to act like he was a victim/behaved in a civilized way around us/generally made us feel sorry for him.
Then, we woke up and all our shit was stolen (and the Orc was long gone).

(i.e. They aren't like us and don't act like us, so don't think of Orcs in a civilized way. That's why they're "Orc".)

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Hello, Bromides!

Indeed, the deeper cultural implications are pretty profound. On one hand, even if it assumed that the Orcs would remain dominant racially, the infusion of so many Chang Humans through such constant interbreeding would no doubt have a significant impact. Then, as more and more Orc children would exhibit even a modest increase in intellectual capacity, as a whole, the dividends would increase. Chang Human slaves, specialist craftsmen, scholars, all would contribute a vast legacy of language, knowledge, and skills. Such developments, I think, would likely transform the tribal Orc society at least into a fairly well-organized Kingdom. Then, once a functioning government and leadership is secured, a more sophisticated and functioning economy and agriculture industry would no doubt develop quickly. At that point, with the diffusion of knowledge, technology, traditions, and skills, yeah, things get very interesting!

Just imagine what advanced agriculture processes would contribute? A huge increase in the population, as well as general health and longevity.

Perhaps an official "scholar class" may develop. More advanced armour, weaponry, and military organization in general. An increased efficiency in economy and trade, generating an increase in wealth and overall prosperity.

Martial Arts traditions, horsemanship, organizing and building more improved villages, towns, and even cities. I think that their skills in fortifications and supply maintenance would also likely improve.

So many angles and details to consider! ;D

Semper Fidelis,


And the evil genius behind it all is essentially Saruman crossed with Ming the Merciless, right?

Someone earlier said orcs were chaotic evil, but that's not the case, at least in AD&D.  They were lawful evil, so organization would be natural, as would survival of the fittest within a defined hierarchy.  And there are plenty of superior orcs and hybrids in various versions of D&D already to draw further inspiration from.  Hackmaster 4e has several.

Frightens me, makes me fear for my map, i'm sorry the orcs must die, a rock falls from the high heavens i have to update the map for the crater...dammit...


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