(Base Race- HALF-ORC, Sub Race- None)
Even in the tolerant lands of Faerun, a half-orc's life is hardly
ever easy. Some human areas tolerate half- orcs, making their lives no
harder than the lives of other settlers in the area. Other human areas
despise half-orcs and persecute them, making life in the open with
savage orc tribes look survivable by comparison.
* Ability Adjustments: +2 Strength, -2 Intelligence, -2 Charisma.
* Darkvision: Half-orcs can see in the dark up to 60 feet.
* Favored Class: Barbarian: A multiclass half-orc's barbarian class
does not count when determining whether he takes an experience point
penalty. Ferocity runs in a half-orc's veins.
Half-orcs are fairly common throughout Faerun. They have no true
homeland to call their own and as a result most spend their lives
wandering the world in search of a purpose. Half-orcs are invariably the
product of a human and an orc, but stories are told of half- orcs
carrying the blood of dwarves, goblins, hobgoblins, and even halflings,
gnomes and elves. Orcs are the fecund race, and such stories likely have
some genesis in truth. A half-orc is usually about as tall as a human
and a little heavier. Their skin tends to be gray with green or even
purple undertones, and their faces feature sloping brows, jutting jaws
with prominent teeth, and flat, squashed noses. This and their coarse
body hair make their lineage plain for all to see.
Half-orcs have been a part of Faerun for a very long time,
but nonetheless they have never organized into a true civilization of
their own. Unique half-orcs often gain great power in their chosen field
and become well kown in history texts, but their exploits are always in
the name of another people, or (more often) isolated incidents not tied
to any particular civilization.
Most half-orcs are surly individuals who endured horrible
childhoods. They are too coarse and savage to fit in well with humans,
and too fragile and thoughtful to fit in with orcs. As a result, the
majority of half-orcs grow up alone and without any influence from orc
or human society. Thus, half-orcs speak their mind and act upon their
feelings without any fear of repercussions. They are nomads, loners, and
hermits at best, and murderers and savages at worst. Without a place to
call a home, and often without a family or close friends to count on for
companionship, half-orcs learn from an early age to look out for
themselves. This is often interpreted as greed or selfishness by other
races, but too many half-orcs have learned the hard way that they are
not welcome in any land, and must provide for themselves .
Half-orcs natural strenght and toughness push
them strongly toward fighters and barbarians and away from the
spellcasting classes. Half-orcs rogues are common as well. Favored
Class: Barbarian; half-orcs shun society as a rule and as a result must
be strong and able to survive in the wilderness. Prestige Classes: Half-orcs,
in their nomadic travels, are often exposed to a wide range of prestige
classes. As a result, it isn't unusual for a higher level half-orc to
possess one or two levels in just about any prestige class she can meet
the requirements for.
Although the half-orcs of Faerun have no true nation
to call their own, there are some small regions in the world that are
ruled by their kind. Strangely, it seems that when half-orcs gather in
large groups like this, they tend to be much more civilizated than their
feral orc kin. The city of Palischuk in Vaasa, for example, is a ruined
rebuilt by a large tribe of nearly ten thousand half-orcs who now trade
peacefully with their neighbors. Another example is Phsant in Thesk, a
city with a strong gray orc presence and a growing half-orc community.
Language and Literacy
All half-orcs speak both Common and Orc. They
are accepted on the fringes of both orc and human societies, and being
able to communicate clearly with both dramatically increases a half-orc's
chance to find allies. Although they don't particularly make gifted
linguists, half-orcs learn a number of other languages simply as a
result of their nomafic, wandering lifestyles. Other languages commonly
learned by half-orcs include Damaran, Giant, Gnoll, Goblin, Illuskan,
and Undercommon. All half-orcs are literate except for barbarians,
adepts, commoners, and warriors.
Half-Orc Magic and Lore
Half-orcs do not have a centralized society
that they can call their own, and as a result have not developed any
unique racial spells or spellcasting traditions.
Half-Orc Magic Items
In keeping their proclivity toward warfare,
half- orcs prefer magic weapons and armors as a rule. Their dangerous
lives often depend on their offensive and defensive capabilities. Items
like bats of disguise are popular among half-orcs who dwell in regions
where their kind if hated or mistrusted.
Half-orcs who remain among their orc kindred worship
the gods of the orc pantheon, often with greater belief and fervor than
regular orcs since many half-orcs feel the need to prove to their
deities that they are just as powerful and strong as their full-blooded
orc kindred. Those half-orcs who do not dwell among orcs are free to
choose their deities as they will. Common patron deities for such half-orcs
include Bane, Garagos, Hoar, Loviatar, Malar, Talona, Tempus, and Tyr.
Relations with Other Races
Half-orcs have uphill battles to fight when
interacting with most other races, since many are quick to assume that
their orcish blood carries with it an inherent savagery and cruelty.
Most half-orcs return this suspicion and trepidation when interacting
with others. They make friends only with difficulty. Once trust is
established, it is often a fleeting thing that can be fractured with
one misinterpreted comment. Often, a half-orc joins an adventuring
company and never feels fully at ease with her traveling companions no
matter how many times they have proven their loyalty.
Half-orcs, as a race, have not developed any
unique tyoes of exotic weapons, although many individuals favor orc
weapons such as the double axe. Most of them are reticent about owning
more equipment and gear than they can easily carry, both because of
their nomadic spirits and because they must always be ready to tear up
their roots and move on if their neightbors suddenly decide to turn on
Animals and Pets
Half-orcs are particularly fond of keeping animals
as pets, since pets have few preconceived notions about a person's
background or race. Hunting dogs, horses, and falcons are all popular
choices, and those with particular skill at Handle Animals sometimes
train more dangerous monsters like owlbears, spider eaters, and dire
naimals as pets or minions.