These orc/human crossbreeds are most often born in as the unfortunate byproduct of raids in border areas between human and orc (euroz) cultures. Despite rejection from both sides of their heritage, many half-orcs achieve renown.
[[File:605271 | class=media-item-align-left | 120×250px | half-orcs.jpg]]Physical Description: Half-Orcs are, on average, somewhere from 5’9" – 6’4" (1.75 – 1.93 meters) in height and usually weigh around 155 – 225 pounds (70 – 102 kg) making them a little taller and stronger than humans on average. Most half-orcs have grayish skin, jutting jaws, prominent teeth, a sloping forehead, and coarse body hair, which causes them to stand out from their human brethren, though their canines are noticeably smaller than a full-blooded orc’s tusks. Half-orcs as such appear bestial to humans, though amongst orcs they are considered human-like physically. Half-orc hair is most often black, though it grays very quickly with age. In general, half-orcs do not live as long as humans, maturing by their sixteenth year and often dying before their sixtieth.
Society: Unlike half-elves, where at least part of society’s discrimination is born out of jealousy or attraction, half-orcs get the worst of both worlds: physically weaker than their orc kin, they also tend to be feared or attacked outright by humans who don’t bother making the distinction between full orcs and half bloods. Even on the best of terms, half-orcs in civilized societies are not exactly accepted, and tend to be valued only for their physical abilities. On the other hand, orc leaders have been known to deliberately spawn half-orcs, as the half breeds make up for their lack of physical strength with increased cunning and aggression, making them natural leaders and strategic advisors. Within orc tribes, half-orcs find themselves constantly striving to prove their worth in battle and with feats of strength. Half-orcs raised within orc tribes are more likely to file their tusks and cover themselves in tribal tattoos. Tribal leaders quietly recognize that half-orcs are often more clever than their orc cousins and often apprentice them to the tribe’s shaman, where their cunning might eventually strengthen the tribe. Apprenticeship to a shaman is a brutal and often short-lived distinction, however, and those half-orcs who survive it either become influential in the tribe or are eventually driven to leave.
Half-Orcs have a much more mixed experience in human society, where many cultures view them as little more than monsters. They often are unable even to get normal work, and are pressed into service in the military or sold into slavery. In these cultures, half-orcs often lead furtive lives, hiding their nature whenever possible. The dark underworld of society is often the most welcoming place, and many half-orcs wind up serving as enforcers for thieves guilds or other types of organized crime. Less commonly, human cities may allow half-orcs a more normal existence, even enabling them to develop small communities of their own. These communities are usually centered around the arena districts, the military, or mercenary organizations where their brute strength is valued and their appearance is more likely to be overlooked. Even surrounded by their own kind, half-orc life isn’t easy. Bullying and physical confrontation comes easy to a people who have been raised with few other examples of behavior.
Relations: Elves and dwarves tend to be the least accepting of half-orcs, seeing in them too great a resemblance to their racial enemies, and other races aren’t much more understanding. A lifetime of persecution leaves the average half-orc wary and quick to anger, yet people who break through his savage exterior might find a well-hidden core of empathy. Human societies with few orc problems tend to be the most accommodating, and half-orcs dwelling there can often find work as mercenaries and enforcers. Even in places where there is a general tolerance for half-orcs, however, many humans mistreat them when they can get away with it.
Alignment and Religion: Forced to live either among brutish orcs or as lonely outcasts in civilized lands, most half-orcs are bitter, violent, and reclusive. Evil comes easily to them, but they are not evil by nature—rather, most half-orcs are chaotic neutral, having been taught by long experience that there’s no point doing anything but that which directly benefits themselves. Half-orcs who live amongst orcs commonly take to worshiping the orc pantheon, sometimes with even greater zeal than their orcish brethren since they feel the need to prove themselves worthy. Half-orcs raised among humans, on the other hand, typically worship other deities.
Adventurers: Staunchly independent, many half-orcs take to lives of adventure out of necessity, seeking to escape their painful pasts or improve their lot through force of arms. Others, more optimistic or desperate for acceptance, take up the mantle of crusaders in order to prove their worth to the world. Half-orcs raised in orc societies often take up the brutish ways of those around them, becoming fighters, barbarians, or rangers. Half-orcs who survive their shaman training may eventually succeed their masters as tribal shamans, or flee the tribe and practice their magic as outcasts or explorers. Half-orcs usually lack the patience and money required to become a wizard.
In addition to the feats listed below, Half-Orcs can take the racial feats of either parent, Orc or Human. Half-Orcs with roots in human cultures can take feats from those instead.
•Badge of Bondage
•Fire God’s Blessing
•Foment the Blood
•Orc Weapon Expertise
•Pass for Human
•Surprise Follow-Through, Improved
•Swift and Silent
•Thrill of the Kill
In addition to the traits listed below, Half-Orcs can take the racial traits of either parent, Orc or Human. Half-Orcs with roots in human cultures can take traits from those instead.