Orcs and Goblins - Tribes, realms and characters

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    • I don't like having the majority of information as in-game sources, written in strange letter. That's some nice things to have, but imho the majority of material should be provided as outgame-source, written in easy to read and understand letters and language, combined with block diagrams and maps when helpful.
    • well ... my not ideal but the closest version is portrayal from shadow of mordor game ,btw I really miss overgrown orcs in our book.
      So on we all know the basics behavior of greenies like brutality cunning etc... with doses of grotesque of course .I don't think is there any place for "useless " things like care for females or offspring and stuff like that . My thoughts are more on spore alike replication symbiosis. For example when orc dies while his body is pumped with adrenaline (nothing is better then good fight on the battlefield to do those both things) on his carcass puffballs starts pullulating . Ripe fungi explode to relise spores which travels with wind hundreds of miles.. when spore its landing in a "womb" moss under that surface the greenhide germ beginning. That's my circle of existence concept of greenhide race often named "the punishment of the gods". All that can explain obligatory cult of fire supporting by many races and nations which is responsible for burning greenhide remains after battles because wise men knows more orcs you kill yet more orcs will come later on.
      keep calm and warrrgha cadabra
    • As was already said by (iirc) Calisson, spore-breeding orcs is right out. That was a literary innovation by Games Workshop and part of its intellectual property, and is thus untouchable.

      Why would caring for females and offspring etc be useless and something that should be done away with? If we don't want the armies of our game to live for anything but war, we might as well go full For Honor and declare that T9A battles take place in a celestial arena where armies are beamed down and made to fight each other for the amusement of bored gods.

      Me, I'd rather have a game background where armies fight for reasons deeper than "just because". My proposal for orcish ecology and the resulting sociology (post #95 in this thread) provides an internally consistent and believable explanation for why they are the way they are, and makes their motivations understandable in consideration of their situation, and thus makes them relatable.

      Orcs having a super-biology that makes them capable of taking over any ecosystem and makes sustaining their numbers trivially easy, as well as orcs fighting simply for its own sake, only make sense in 40k where they are a lifeform deliberately bio-engineered for war by a super advanced alien species. In a medieval fantasy world, that kind of thing would be sheer deus ex machina.
      Sunna is not with the big battalions, but with the ones whose parts move with the best coordination.
    • In my world/mind orcs have both male and female individuals, but to the common human they appear the same. Both having increased girth and constitution making them difficult to tell apart in the heat of battle. Both are equally adapt at wielding a blade or scalping conquered foes. Orc children are brought up by the tribe, not having a real "mother" or "father". This increases hardiness of the warriors (male and female) as they have no "parents" to hide behind as well as increases tribe loyalty as it is the only "parent" they know.
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    • Another thing. Orcish tribal politics. In the crowdsourcing for army book unit entry fluff, I did a contribution for Orc Chief. The key point being that orcish tribal politics can be described as a very violent form of democracy.

      It should be clear that it would be impossible for a tribal chieftain to rule without broad popular support. When every member or the tribe (or, at the very least, the great majority of adult males) is a fighter and of belligerent temperament, there's just no way for the few to keep the many subjugated. It's like an American NRA Second Amendment guy's dream society of an armed and dangerous population being a safeguard against tyrannical government.

      So, how could an orcish tribe have any sort of cohesion without tearing itself apart over constant infighting? Democracy safeguarded and backed by the threat of violence is where it's at. Which means it's not exactly one orc, one vote since some have a greater capability for violence than others, but still way more democratic than pretty much anything else in the T9A world.

      The way I'm imagining it could work, for instance, is something like this: There are tribal assemblies semi-regularly, where major decisions are made and chieftains are elected. An orc making a proposition or running for office does so by rallying a mob of supporters physically around or behind him ("Who's wiv me? Who's zogging wiv me!"), while competing candidates do the same. Individual orcs show their support by joining one of the mobs, quite literally voting with their feet, while shouting their support and growling menacingly at the other mobs. If one mob gets overwhelming numbers, the other mob(s) usually back down. If there's no clear majority though, chances are that neither side will back down, and a fight will ensue and go on until either side becomes unwilling or incapable to fight on and concedes the issue. If it's a vote between three or more options, this leads to a kind of transferable vote systems, since the smallest mobs would likely back down first and their members join the bigger ones, possibly shifting their relative sizes.

      For this kind of violent democracy to work though, a few things would be needed. First, that there would be no cowardice or dishonour in conceding, but that it be seen as a respectable thing to do to preserve the unity of the tribe rather than be an obstructionist. If conceding would be a loss of face, no orcish tribal politician would do so, and the system wouldn't work. Second, as a counterpart to that, certain political rights would need to de facto exist, more specifically, that what happens at the tribal assembly stays at the tribal assembly, and none is allowed to retaliate for actions at it. If those who end up outnumbered and outmatched at the assembly would have to fear being killed by the orc-gestapo in their beds the next night, they wouldn't be able to concede either, but would have to fight regardless of the odds. Of course, that wouldn't stop a few foolish chieftains from trying to purge the tribe of dissenters, but that would almost invariably signal the beginning of the end of his rule, an end usually more violent than most tribal assemblies.
      Sunna is not with the big battalions, but with the ones whose parts move with the best coordination.
    • Reminds me of chimpanzees.
      IIRC. Sometimes alpha is challenged by beta and friends. Alpha meets contestants one by one, starting by weakest, and subjugates. Hardest to subjugate is beta. If anyone does not concede, a short fight happens. If beta is first to fight, his chances are low. If second or third fight, chances are higher. If alfa lost any fight, beta wins, cause the one who has beaten alfa cannot win a second fight.
      In any case, the looser shows extra respect to the winner and remains in tribe. Tribe must not become weaker.
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      Side note, former alfa have the best access to females, better than current alfa. Reason is current alfa spends more energy showing who is the boss than running after females.
      Former alfa needs no longer to show he is the boss.
      Females know that former alfa has alpha genes as good as current alfa.
      Current alfa tolerates former alfa sexual activity in exchange of siding with him when challenged (former alfa wants to remain a former alfa for a long time!), and because he expects to become a former alpha himself at some stage.

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    • Pretty much what Calisson said. Only that I don't like the usual trope of the biggest and meanest orc being automatically boss, or that all he needs to do to keep his position is to win single combats against contenders. Orcs are belligerent maniacs, they're not stupid, if they're fed up with his asshattery they will gang up on him.

      Among humans, a single badass alpha male can succeed at keeping a whole group of weaker individuals in line, despite them knowing they can take him out together, because it takes someone to get the revolution started, and being that guy is dangerous, thus fear works as a force multiplier for the alpha's own strength. Among orcs, their instinctive belligerence would make that dynamic much more fragile.

      Being strong and mean would certainly be an advantage for an orc politician, but I can't see that as an absolute requirement. If a particular chieftain has ruled well for long and has broad popular support but is starting to weaken in body due to old age but is still strong of spirit and sound of mind, why should his followers ditch him? More specifically, why should they instead start to follow some young upstart who thinks he should be chieftain just because he can bash in the head of the old chieftain?
      Sunna is not with the big battalions, but with the ones whose parts move with the best coordination.
    • Konrad von Richtmark wrote:

      Pretty much what Calisson said. Only that I don't like the usual trope of the biggest and meanest orc being automatically boss, or that all he needs to do to keep his position is to win single combats against contenders. Orcs are belligerent maniacs, they're not stupid, if they're fed up with his asshattery they will gang up on him.

      Among humans, a single badass alpha male can succeed at keeping a whole group of weaker individuals in line, despite them knowing they can take him out together, because it takes someone to get the revolution started, and being that guy is dangerous, thus fear works as a force multiplier for the alpha's own strength. Among orcs, their instinctive belligerence would make that dynamic much more fragile.

      Being strong and mean would certainly be an advantage for an orc politician, but I can't see that as an absolute requirement. If a particular chieftain has ruled well for long and has broad popular support but is starting to weaken in body due to old age but is still strong of spirit and sound of mind, why should his followers ditch him? More specifically, why should they instead start to follow some young upstart who thinks he should be chieftain just because he can bash in the head of the old chieftain?
      Orcs in T9A are not stupid, I would like to make this plain clear. They have their own kind of intelligence, which is based on different needs and biology compared to other sentient races.

      Challenging the authority is a pivotal part of the tribal politics of the orcs, where tribal doesn't mean "simpler", but "related to the tribe". Such a challenge to the leadership is channeled in specific rituals and myths.

      Also, leadership is not a matter of mere strenght, nor an individual thing, it's a matter of broods, or social groups inside the tribe.

      I would compare the leadership of the alpha orc to that of an alpha wolf: he doesn't need strenght only, but also tactical and strategical capabilities to become FIRST the leader of his social group and then to lead that group to the tribe leadership.

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      A jackal, O Karna, residing in the forest in the midst of hares regardeth himself a lion till he actually sees a lion.




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    • Alpha wolfs are not a thing, except in artificial wolf groups in zoos that just met. Even those usually grow out of it after a while.
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    • Konrad von Richtmark wrote:

      If a particular chieftain has ruled well for long and has broad popular support but is starting to weaken in body due to old age but is still strong of spirit and sound of mind, why should his followers ditch him? More specifically, why should they instead start to follow some young upstart who thinks he should be chieftain just because he can bash in the head of the old chieftain?
      Do orcs really age?
      For what I know they could be like elfs... The shamans may look older, but this could be the cost of playing with magic forces.
    • I don't know of any fantasy world apart from Tolkien's where elves are ageless. In pretty much every other, they're the longest-lived race, but still of finite lifespan.

      I doubt T9A means to be different from the mainstream in this regard, though if it were, would it produce interesting fluff?
      Sunna is not with the big battalions, but with the ones whose parts move with the best coordination.