For the rules on playing half-orcs, see Half-orc (playable).

Half-orcs are the inevitable result when orcs clash with other humanoid races. Several orc tribes actively work toward breeding half-orc children for their greater mental capabilities. These half-breeds are despised by most of the world, however, which sees them as the spawn of violence or a filthy perversion.[1]


File:Graun Quor.jpg

Half-orcs vary in appearance more than most other races, ranging from more orcish features such as greenish skin and protruding lower tusks to near human with little more to distinguish them as half-orcs than prominent noses, jawlines and brows. Some of the offspring of orcs and human however have dominant human traits making them appear as if they were completely human.[2] Regardless of facial appearance, virtually every half-orc has a stature far larger than that of the average human. Their hair most often is dark, favoring shades of brown, gray, or even dark red, although black is the most common. Their eyes are often small and beady, while their ears are almost always pointed.[3]

History Edit

Half-orcs in the Alexandrian Empire have existed since the Old Empires, and the Ariyan Empire; when the orcs would raid each empire in turn.  In fact, the Old Empire of Sargon had caused a nation of Phoenicians that they've captured to be freed and to act as a buffer to the orc tribes (and the Pelagasiri Elves, interestingly enough).

The Archimeniad EmpireEdit

When the Ariyans conquered Southwest Aisha, they tried to extend and annex several Orc tribes into their empire.  However, this didn't turn out so well.  The orc tribes (and the Phoenician descendants with them) proved to be troublesome for the Ariyan War Machine. However, orc raiding into Ariyan Territory has always caused Half-orc bastards to be born amongst the Ariyans.  Many of these babies were slain in the human communities, the reminder of rapine and violence for many of the communities.  However, some survive, and are an embarassment to humans.

Alexandrian ConquestEdit

SciFi.Fantasy.2004-Dnd-Archetypes-Half-Orc-Female.halforcfemale small.jpg.rZd.55244

Half-orc psiloi (unknown).

During the Alexandrian Conquest of the Ariyan Empire, the half-orcs ran to Alexander's army and surrendered, asked for asylum, or offered alliegance.  This is because the Ariyans would mistreat the half-orcs, mostly because of their obvious orc blood.  However, Alexander was bewildered with all the half-humans that offered to join his army.  However, he promised them aid, but he did not promise them better treatment under his laws.  Alexander knew human nature, and to make laws to force people to be moral was just not done.

The half-orcs, however, knew that they were getting a better deal with the Hellenes and accepted it.  Many half-orcs were trained to be psiloi or Gymnitai, but were not trained as hoplites.  Never the less, the half-orcs that joined Alexander's Army proved to be loyal and steadfast against their former Ariyan 'masters'.  When Victory was declared, the Half-orcs returned to their homes, were stationed at a base (or an Alexandrian city). When Phaeselis was founded, few Half-orcs were stationed at Alexandria on the Phoenix, and a larger number found a home there.

Half-Orc Heritages Edit


Half-orc from mountain stock.

Most half-orcs have a generic orc heritage but, in some cases, the orc ancestry is to a specific and known type of orc resulting in distinctive features and attributes. Some of these half-orc heritages are as follows:[4]


Habitat & Society Edit

Half-orcs are the target of pronounced and often violent prejudice throughout much of Aisha and beyond. They are seen as the offspring of violence or perversion, and are shunned because of it. This is most true in the regions bordering the land of Anaxamandras, where the greatest concentration of orcs can be found, as this kingdom frequently suffers under the warlike and brutal thumb of the orcs. Further south and west, half-orcs are given more benefit of the doubt, especially in Phaeselis and Alexandria, and the major cosmopolitan cities surrounding the Great Sea. They are most commonly found in the city of Nineveh, and in the conquered nations of Bactria, the Aryano-Hellenic Kingdoms, and the city of Ariyanopolis as well as the city of Alexandria Eschate.

Life in the Horde Edit

Half-orcs living in orc societies generally find that they are smarter, but considerably weaker than those around them. Because of this deficiency most are taken as slaves. Those who excel in warfare and skill at arms often find themselves reaching positions of leadership. These individuals are very rare. Others become witch doctors or shamans, masking their true nature behind elaborate masks that they must always wear.[5]

Life in Human Societies Edit

Half-orcs living in majority human societies often have a hard time fully integrating, partially because of the prejudice directed towards them, but also because of their innately savage and impulsive nature. They are also prone to impatience, greed, and violence, traits that tend to push them into the margins. Despite these tendencies, half-orcs are capable of displaying the full set of human emotions.[3]

Tattoos & Brands Edit

Often taken as slaves or hunted as beasts (by both orcs and humans), many half-orcs display various brands and tattoos given to them by others. Some have transformed these marks of shame and subjugation into beautiful works of art, turning their painful past into a symbol of pride and survival.[3][6]

Naming Edit

Most half-orcs either grow up alone on the streets or else are raised by their orcish parent, and because of this, few have human-sounding names. When humans do raise them, they most-often have harsh or guttural names, reflecting their parent's anger at having sired such an offspring.[3]

Religion Edit

Even though half-orcs worship a wide range of deities, most pay their respects to the Orc Ancestor Worship and the spirits that the heathen orcs worship. Half-orcs who hate human civilization and (openly or secretly) wish to bring about its downfall, naturally find themselves drawn to various conqueror theologies, like Cyric. Those with a more generous bent worship Zeus or the Buddha; but are drawn especially to Ares and his embrace of freedom and bravery.

Winter orcMountain orcOrcDesert Orc
Jungle orcDarklands orc
Related Races


  1. Erik Mona et al (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 14. Paizo Publishing, LLCISBN 978-1-60125-112-1.
  2. Erik Mona et al (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 219. Paizo Publishing, LLCISBN 978-1-60125-112-1.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 James Jacobs et al (2011). The Inner Sea World Guide, p. 29. Paizo Publishing, LLCISBN 978-1-60125-269-2.
  4. Judy Bauer, Neal F. Litherland, Ryan Macklin, and David N. Ross (2014). Bastards of Golarion, p. 11ff'. Paizo Inc.. ISBN 978-1-60125-602-7.
  5. Steve Kenson, Rob McCreary, Richard Pett, et al (2010). Orcs of Golarion, p. 8. Paizo Publishing, LLCISBN 978-1-60125-256-2.
  6. Steve Kenson, Rob McCreary, Richard Pett, et al (2010). Orcs of Golarion, p. 20. Paizo Publishing, LLCISBN 978-1-60125-256-2.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.