hi everyone, when making a character I wanted to go for something a little different with the background, can I play someone who was born as a barbarian orc but as a baby was found after a skirmish and raised in the empire, I’ve already emailed PD but haven’t received a response (yet) do any of you know off hand

I’d say it’s probably a no based on the ruling in the wiki.

Ah, but he’s not a part of a barbarian nation… he’s an immigrant pre-citizenship…

So if you are playing an orc, found as a baby during a raid on barbarian lands (possibly during the pushing back of the Lasambrians in Seguara?), and then raised by the Imperial Orcs, joining them upon gaining citizenship…

…it doesn’t seem so different from those humans raised by the Imperial orcs and leaving to join other nations… or even the children of ex-Jotun Thralls in the Mournwold who grow up and join the Imperial Orcs…

The character is not, and never has been in any significant way, a member of a barbarian nation…

It’s an interesting possibility.

It’ll get you no shinies or information, and merely be an interesting piece of backstory fluff.

PD may well say yes to it.

Bear in mind though, that chance are your backstory will rapidly become a lot less relevant than what you do in play. Especially your backstory as an infant…

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You are already choosing to go for something “a bit different” by playing an Imperial Orc. That is something that sets you apart from 95% of the field. There are loads of other players committed to making the Imperial Orcs “a bit different”, and I’d advise joining in that effort. By trying to distinguish your character even further you are actually diluting the distinctiveness of the Imperial Orcs.


I think the only large in game difference this would cause is a different set of Ancestors shouting at from across the abyss. There would have been little difference in your up bringing (too young to matter).
It could be used to highlight your costume in ways? a shock of colour here, maybe a totem there, maybe a carved wooden toy you were found with and have kept tied to your belt?

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I wouldnt expect PC Orcs of other nations any time soon tbh, specifically because they have so few physreps, though you might get the odd NPC.

I would definitely wait on the PD email, direct barbarian ancestors are no small thing, especially given how they spread. You also wouldnt have all the Slave ancestors and actual juicy opportunities they provide :wink:

Also as mentioned above, why? Play a foundling sure but why a barbarian foundling? You would be much better off playing a “pure” imperial orc and getting all that game tbh.


I was under the impression PD had said that wouldn’t be an option. Where did you hear that?

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Further to that:

“Regardless of what happens in the course of this plot, the Mournwold Orcs will not become a playable option for players in the Empire game at this time. If they join the Marchers then there will be Marcher Orcs in the setting - but they will not be a playable option in the game, anymore than the hylje in Wintermark or the mora in Varushka are a playable option. For the foreseeable future, the only orc character that is a playable option in Empire will be an Imperial Orc.”


Generally in a larp, Empire especially you actually get more plot by leaning into the stereotypes of a particular nation as what plot and story there is will be trying to hit the most people in a nation (and be in keeping with the brief at the same time). Also you’ve got a lot more stuff to play with in the background to support you, normally there’s gaps where PCs haven’t filled out all the existing opportunities in the background yet.

That being said many Orcs who Grendel Slaves and were freed in the raids on Dubtraig + Beoraidh have joined the Imperial Orcs so there are stories there to tell as they assimilate into Imperial Orc culture (as joining a nation will encourage you to do so through the Egregore). Also before that the Liberated, slaves purchased from Jarm, educated in the College of the Liberated and who then migrated to Skarsind are an option if you speak one of the languages spoken in Jarm.

However I would strongly recommend you see what parts of the Imperial Orc background which haven’t been used yet by players or many players and try playing with those.

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There are a few Imperial Orcs that (in their backstory) started as Lasambrians who defected to the Empire; the born-Imperial Orcs treat those former-Lasambrians with neglect. ie the born-Imperials tend to snub or ignore the Lasambrians. I hear it can be a tough game, a little like a Navarr Briar.

(I know this only because some Freeborn who died joined the Imperial Orcs as former-Lasambrians, and the Imperial Orc players who told me that their characters treat the defectors as worthless.

Or, that’s what they led me to believe/understand. It’s going to be a tough row to hoe if you decide to go with it.)

Some of the people who play Imperial Orcs on the field play this kind of prejudice but it’s by no means universal among players. There’s a range of views out their on the field. For example I know there are a few ex-Grendel slaves out there in the Imperial Orcs at the moment.