Campaign of the Month: November 2007
Varis: The Broken Land
Orc and Goblin History
Most of Orc history isn’t recorded as the barbaric orc tribes never saw a reason to record history. The Orcs believe that they formed from the body of their creator, Gruumsh.
What is known is that the Orcs are crusaders on a divine mission: subjugate everything that isn’t an orc. Throughout their history the orcs have been a nomadic force of destruction, sweeping in with great hordes and destroying entire civilizations. The orcs have never before been organized enough to keep and protect a ‘homeland’ as far as they can remember.
They swept in and devastated Azduum, nearly extinguishing the dwarven race from the world and followed the dwarves, constantly dogging their path on their exodus to Varis.
After several failed attempts to destroy the remaining dwarven holds in the Highlands the orcs disappeared, launching only isolated raids as their hierarchy was changed for Gruumsh was tired of their constant failure and gifted his worshippers with a blessing.
His highest priests were transformed with the foul essence of his divinity, becoming corrupted in body and soul but exceedingly powerful in nearly every respect. These priests allied the frost giants and waged war upon the dwarves and for the first time since their arrival in Varis came close to success only to be defeated in what would be the last battle by the dwarven Thane Morbin and his magical sword Meallan.
Defeated, the orcs withdrew into their warrens and Gruumsh raged in his domain. In this rage he concocted his next plan. The orcs lay dormant, breeding a new horde until Gruumsh’s commands came again. After over a century the time finally came. Gar the Devourer, an orc blessed in the womb of an orc psychic named Vazra Bloodfist by Gruumsh’s dark seed.
Gar was not physically strong but his blessing was apparent to all and as he grew his wrathful powers manifested along with a keen, calculating intellect and the wisdom to plan ahead not months or years but decades.
At the eve of his adulthood he assumed control of the orcs by dismembering and eating the current orc chieftain and began a complex military campaign.
In the years that followed the human nation of Bretyn was crushed but rather than pillage and move on the horde remained at Gar’s command and rebuilt the human’s shattered defenses and remade their capital and their cities to better suit the savage society.
The surviving humans were enslaved and the Mor’Ghol was built to train the next generation of orcish leaders and indoctrinate those with unique powers from both the orcs and the goblin slave stock to better serve the new orcish nation.
Since the cataclysm the orc hordes have laid waste to the northlands and destroyed countless dwarven fortifications and communities. Thousands of dwarven refugees now flood to the greatest dwarven city of them all, Azduum, and Gar need only wait for the best moment to pounce.
Despite their barbaric nature orcs have a very complicated caste system that when boiled down to its barest minimums is quite simple but also depends on a creature’s usefulness to the horde. A powerful goblinoid psychic could be higher in society than an orc warrior despite being from a lower caste. But in the broadest terms of society that goblinoid psychic would still be a slave.
Orcs then hobgoblins and then goblin slaves then humans, dwarves, elves, etc.