"We'z Orks! An' we'z made fer fightin', and winnin'!"
- A war cry attributed to Warlord Gorgutz 'Ead 'Unter, the legendary ork leader of the 5th Era.
Orks, also known as Orsimer, or Greenskins, are a race of Mer, or Elf-kin, that originated on the continent of Orsinium in Velous. Orks are green-skinned, barbaric, crude, and extremely warlike. They are easily the most hated of any race of Elf, as they are unfailingly agressive, brutal and destructive, having no qualms about killing others, and each other.
Orks have troubled histories with nearly every sentient species on the planet. They have been involved in many conflicts that threatened the stability of the world, and as a race, have claimed uncountable lives throughout the ages, all throughout Existence. Orks are, as a mortal race, considered to be the greatest enemy of all sentient life on the planet Earth, and one of the greatest threats to peace and order in all Existence.
Currently the Orks reel in anger at the destruction of their homeland by the Humans. Manipulated and under direction of the cunning warlock Gul'dan, the majority of the Orkish race were rallied together into a fearsome Black Horde, an empire built entirely on blood and dark iron. Though Gul'dan uses the Orkish horde for his own purpose, the Greenskins believe themselves to be embarking on the biggest, greatest WAAAGH of all, to conquer the whole of the world.
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BiologyOrks are said to be "Elf-kin", in that they share common ancestry with the elves that dwell in Velous. This ancestry is hypothesized to come from millions and millions of years in the past, when the primitive Rieklings, progenitors of Elves, came about and spread all across Velous. However, the Orks' Elvish genealogy is only half-accurate. The ancestors of Orks in particular came to change due to a strange fungus that was ingested by the Rieklings that dwelled in the land that came to be known as Orsinium. None are quite sure what exactly this fungus native to Orsinium was - the Orks refer to it as "Meat-shrooms", and it has been described by non-orks as fleshy and smelly. This fungi which became so important to Orkish society, actually altered Greenskin DNA over several generations, becoming symbiotic organisms living within the Orks.
Orks are far more different from their Aldmer ancestors than any other of their Mer cousins. They are degenerated - extremely hardy, capable of withstanding incredible punishment, they are quite dim-witted in general, bearing sunken-in noses, large jaws of sharp teeth, hunched-backs, and not to mention, their aggressive and savage behavior. Their most prevalent relation to their cousins is their distinctive pointed ears. Orks, though savage and unintelligent, are currently the most advanced race of mer, and also among the most advanced races in Velous, rivaling the Sergals.
CultureOrks are not too bright on average, remarkably warlike, and are infamous for partaking in wars and conflicts simply for fun and sport. All of Ork society revolves around war and killing, which they believe is the ultimate means of entertainment and recreation, as well as the only worthwhile way of life. Orks will even go to war with each other, and enjoy spilling each other's blood as much as they love killing anything else. However, under strong leadership, millions of Orks can be rallied under a single banner - little can stand before so many bloodthirsty greenskins.
The exact Orkish population is unknown, but it is theorized that their numbers rival or exceed the total population of humans on Earth. In addition to this, it appears that Orks tend to replace their dead very quickly, even in times of war. As a result, the Orkish population is believed to stay mostly constant throughout the years.
Throughout history, Orkish leaders have rallied armies of greenskins into what are known as WAAAGHs (Orkish war efforts). In a WAAAGH, Orks are organized in a very hierarchical manner. At the lowest tier of the Ork war society is the Gretchin or Grot which are small, relatively weak orkoids that are the first evolved form of Ork. (Orks originally evolved from Grots, which are an offshoot of the Reiklings on Solstheim.). The most famed Gretchin of all time was Second-Boss Shub, who was the right hand ork of Warboss Grimskull during the Mythic Dawn Crisis.
Boyz are standard ork fighters, typically armed with any manner of melee weapon or guns, or sometimes both. Boyz are the lowest form of ork in an organized war effort, and are often thrown into battle to die and overwhelm the enemy. Nevertheless, all orks, even boyz, are ruthless and vicious and will fight brutally until death. Only the strongest, meanest boyz get to advance in rank.
Mekboyz are ork mechanics and builders, in charge of producing weaponry and vehicles for the ork armada. Mekboyz are often the "smartest" of the orks, capable of working machines and developing mechanical systems of their own design. The smartest and most ambitious Mekboyz become Senior Mekboyz and often oversee whole scores of ork builders on a project. They are known for beating down those who fail to produce the best and most brutal ork machines.
'Ard Boyz are hardened, battle-tested Boyz, bearing heavier weaponry and better armor. 'Ard Boyz form the core fighting units of an ork war party, and these warriors are no push-overs. They have seen battle time and time again, each time bloodied more, and more hungry for death. A group of 'Ard Boyz can plow through any defensive line, and unleash incredible carnage on any battlefield.
Nobz are high ranking ork warriors, always put in command of a mob or warband of orks. Nobz are without question the front-line leaders of any ork war effort. Nobz are the biggest, baddest, and most brutal warriors any WAAAGH has to offer, and their rule over their war bands are absolute. Often times, nobz come about from duels, where previous nobz are killed by an underling and their position is subsequently taken over. This constant change in command from a strong ork to a stronger one, ensures that only the strongest greenskins lead the orkish war bands.
Warboss and Warlord ranks are often claimed by orks war leaders or nobz in charge of tribes, and WAAAGH!s, respectively. The Warbosses are exceptionally powerful and influential nobz who rose through the ranks and claimed the rank of Boss by trials of combat against their superiors, or their comrades. Only the strongest nobz ever get a chance to become a Warboss, who then often form large fighting forces known as WAAAGHs. These Warbosses then take their army and embark on their favorite pastime, going to war.
There has only ever been one Warlord of the orks at a time. These immensely powerful orks were warbosses who, through cunning and brutality, rally many tribes and war bands of orks together to form even larger WAAAGHs, which can be composed of anywhere to hundreds of thousands to millions of ork fighters. Every time a Warlord has emerged and formed a WAAAGH, it has always resulted in catastrophic damage to their enemies, and countless lives lost, all for the sake of the orkish love of war.
The technology of the orks is maintained by a caste of ork Wierdboyz, who have genetic dispositions to work in several professions, the most notable being the Mekboyz, who produce technology and weaponry for the orks, being very proficient in the use of crude mechanics. They construct large machines of war to use whenever they embark on a WAAAGH! However, these mechanical works (guns, ships, and armor) are quite rudimentary, and it astounds many who have encountered Orks that these objects even function properly.
Modern CultureWith the rise of Gul'dan and the Black Horde, new armors, weapons, and ranks have developed. Most of past Ork technology and ranking remains the same, with new additions. Warbosses and Warlords are less common. The Killmongaz were created, a rank of fearsome Ork berserkers wielding nigh unbreachable armor and huge, destructive melee weapons. Bloodthirsty and vicious, Killmongaz are the most feared class of Ork in the Badlands of Orsinium. Ironbacks are hulking Nob brutes with scrap armor and massive two-hand weapons. They are used to smash defensive lines to pieces, as well as lead offensive charges.
- Warboss Gorgutz 'Ead 'Unter
- Warboss Grimskull
- Grot-Boss Shub
- Warlord Ghazgkull Mag Uruk Thraka
- Krolag gro Dushnik
- Gul'dan the Terrible
- Blackhand "The Destroyer"
The Orks as a race do not hold to any strict religious ideology. However, all across the Orkish lands they hold deep reverence for two mythical deities who are central to Orkish culture, the twin gods named Gork and Mork.