Type Humanoid
General Alignment Often Chaotic
Typical Languages Regional, Orcish
Habitat Semi-Urban, Urban, Wilderness
Subraces N/A
Deities Faerunian Pantheon1)
Orc Pantheon2)
Groups

Half-orcs

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.

A half-orc is usually about as tall 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 and prominent teeth, and flat, squashed noses. This and their coarse body hair make their lineage plain for all to see.

Orcs like scars. They regard battle scars as tokens of pride and ornamental scars as things of beauty. Any half-orc who has lived among or near orcs has scars, whether they are marks of shame indicating servitude and identifying the half-orc’s former owner, or marks of pride recounting conquests and high status. Such a half-orc living among humans either displays or hides his scars, depending on his attitude toward them.

Half-orcs mature a little faster than humans and age noticeably faster. Few half-orcs live longer than 75 years.

Subrace Adulthood Middle Age Old Venerable Maximum Age
Half-Orc 16 30 45 60 80

Most half-orcs are surly individuals who endured horrible childhoods. They are too coarse and savage to fit in well with humans, too fragile and thoughtful to fit in with orcs. As a result, the majority of half-orcs grow up alone and without much influence from either 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 murderous savages at worst.

Without a place to call 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.

Although 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 civilized than their feral orc kin. The city of Palischuk in Vaasa, for example, is a ruined city rebuilt by a large tribe of half-orcs who now trade peacefully with their neighbors. Another example is Phsant in Thesk, a city with a strong orc presence and growing half-orc community.

Half-orcs have uphill battles to fight with 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 travelling companions no matter how many times they have proven their loyalty.

Half-orcs, as a race, have not developed any unique types of exotic weapons, though many individuals favour orcish 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 neighbors suddenly decide to turn on them.

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.

Names

A half-orc typically chooses a name that helps him make the impression that he wants to make. If he wants to fit in among humans, he chooses (or retains) a human name. If he wants to intimidate others, he chooses a guttural orc name. A half-orc who has been raised entirely by humans has a human given name, but he may choose another name once he’s away from his hometown. Some half-orcs, of course, aren’t quite bright enough to choose a name this carefully.

Half-orcs have been 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 known in history texts, but their exploits are always in the name of another people or (more often) isolated incidents not tied to a particular civilization.

Different Dales have slightly different views on half-orcs - mostly related to how troublesome orcs have been to them over the years. However, what they have in common is that half-orcs are permitted to travel openly and freely and they will usually be able to find some gainful employment.

Ferocity

Half-Orcs receive a passive racial ability called Ferocity. Once per day when a half-orc would be downed, they roll a number of d12s equal to their Constitution modifier and heal for that amount. This ability does not protect them from instant death effects.


1)
Half-orcs raised among humans typically favour Faerunian deities and are free to choose their deities as they will. Especially common patrons include Bane, Garagos, Hoar, Loviatar, Malar, Talona, Tempus, and Tyr.
2)
Half-orcs who remain among their orc kindred worship the gods of the orc pantheon, typically with more fervor than their pure-blood kindred, as many half-orcs feel the need to prove themselves to their kin and their gods.