You can get places in life if you’re big, willing to play dirty, and don’t ask a lot of questions. No one ever promised they would be good places, of course, but you’ll certainly go places, and if you are also cunning and vigilant, you can gain power and prestige there, at the edges of society and the places between legal and illegal, good and evil, life and death.
Oggr live in these between -places, these edges of the world. Born of battlefield atrocities, incredibly improbable romances, and peace treaties between barbarian tribes and ogres, these giant-kin find a natural home in the fringes of their parent societies. In human lands, oggr find jobs as dock workers, mercenaries soldiers, and thugs. In ogre societies, oggr are the competent underlings who make things happen, the left hand of the chief, and the masters of spies. Oggr are not pushed into these niches—they seek them out and thrive within them, seizing the throne of their ambitions with surprising self-awareness.
Of course, not all of them are content with living on the edge, and for those oggr who find living in the shadows of society too small, there is power in standing tall.
Some oggr could be mistaken for especially large members of their non-ogre parent race; their ogre blood manifests primarily in size, mass, and a certain propensity to build muscle even without trying to. Oggr may have sharply pointed ears, fangs instead of teeth, or particularly flat noses, but these traits are relatively rare and usually only occur in the event that an oggr has a child with a full-blooded ogre, who then displays those traits as a result of the strengthened ogre blood.
Oggr tend to dress and wear armor in simple, practical ways. They’d rather have something tough and easy to mend, mostly because their jobs often involve getting dirty or torn up on a regular basis (even a perfectly legitimate dock worker handles heavy loads that might snag and tear on clothes). An oggr’s wealth is normally displayed inside of their home or else hidden, and not flashed about on their person with gaudy trinkets that mark the half-blood as a target.
Oggr run the mental gamut from witless thugs to cunning crime lords, but all of them tend to find niches in the edges of places. As hunters, trappers, or scouts, oggr live on the edge of civilization and wilderness; within tribes, oggr straddle the line between warrior and diplomat, or honor and murder. Within cities, oggr combine legitimate and criminal enterprises; they are dock workers who smuggle goods, cleric-for-hire, private security and more. By taking up these niches, oggr play to their strengths and find acceptance in a role where, frankly, their heritage doesn’t have to matter and can even be an advantage.
Life on the edge gives oggr insights into both sides of the lines they straddle. Oggr are keenly aware that factors like poverty, oppression, and lack of access to education can drive people to crime and evil. What they do with this information is very much up to them; wise oggr learn patience early on and make moves that carefully avoid offending power players. Versed in their own personal might, oggr are well aware that numbers trump strength every time.
Ultimately oggr tend to come across as quiet, observant individuals who are willing to play the long game to get what they want. Even stupid, impulsive oggr learn to respect caution after the third or fourth savage beating for insulting this ogre chief or that crime lord, and when caution serves them well it becomes a lifetime habit that surprises those who judge them by their massive size. If others choose to mistake their patience for cowardice or their silence for submission, all the better. Oggr choose their own ways in life, free of the need to prove themselves to anyone but those they love.
Oggr are not normally proud of their heritage, which they treat with an affected indifference. Ogres are not known for their great cultural contributions, after all, and leave their half-breed descendants with little to thank them for except overlarge muscles and a certain killer instinct that helps them in everything from barfights to becoming the world’s least expected rooftop assassins. Generally born into poverty and crime, oggr are raised with practical skills and a certain pragmatic mindset that follows them into the rest of their lives. They settle early into employment and are hard, cunning workers interested in earning a check and going home.
Oggr have a knack for picking up on power players and local politics, which they use to advance their own position in subtle ways, and many see great success as information brokers and gray-market dealers. Oggr do not tend to stand on pride and learn quickly to use methods that work which, curiously, precludes most of the evil ones. Torture, random murder, and arson tend to be bad for business, and oggr would much rather cut a deal than drive away work and custom by being seen as the savages their ogre parents are. This need to prove their “civilized” status is what leads so many oggr to think before they speak and remain silent rather than give a wrong impression.
Oggr adventurers generally started as mercenaries or sellswords who got hired for a specific job and discovered they liked the work. In groups, oggr are very practical and can make invaluable quartermasters. Their knack for moving through street-level civilization also makes them good for finding employment, something they exploit on the behalf of their associates.
Oggr excel in skilled and martial classes, and may be found as rangers, rogues, stalkers, and warders. Some oggr with a magical bent train as magi; others who unlock psionic prowess become cryptics or psychic warriors, with the latter being some of the race’s fiercest soldiers. Oggr respect results, not skill sets, and judge others based on those results rather than the methods used to acquire them. They can get irritated when the high-handed ideals of clerics and paladins get in the way of the mission at hand.
Ability Score Adjustments
Medium: Oggr are Medium creatures and thus have no bonuses or penalties due to their size.
Other Racial Traits
Speed: Oggr have a base speed of 30 feet.
Leathery Hide (Ex) An oggr’s leathery skin increases its natural armor bonus by +2.
Darkvision (Ex) An oggr can see in the dark up to 60 feet.
Powerful Build (Ex) The physical stature of oggr lets them function in many ways as if they were one size category larger. Whenever an oggr is subject to a size modifier or special size modifier for a Combat Maneuver Bonus or Combat Maneuver Defense (such as during grapple checks, bull rush attempts, and trip attempts), the oggr is treated as one size larger if doing so is advantageous to him. An oggr is also considered to be one size larger when determining whether a creature’s special attacks based on size (such as grab or swallow whole) can affect him. An oggr can use weapons designed for a creature one size larger without penalty. However, his space and reach remain those of a creature of his actual size. The benefits of this racial trait stack with the effects of powers, abilities, and spells that change the subject’s size category.
Strong Back (Ex) An oggr’s body is built to carry weight and exert force. They treat their Strength score as 4 points higher when calculating carrying capacity, performing a sunder combat maneuver, or making a Strength check to manipulate an object.
Surprise Whallop (Ex) A half-ogre faces uneven odds every day, either as part of an ogre clan or amongst human cultures, and they learn to hit where it hurts; they double their Strength bonus to damage when attacking flanked or flat-footed opponents.
Languages: Oggr begin play speaking Common and Giant. Oggr with high Intelligence scores can choose from the following: Dwarven, Elven, Giant, Gnoll, Halfling, or Undercommon.
Alternate Racial Traits
Ham-fisted (Ex) Some oggr lack any pretense of subtlety. Their hide isn’t as thick as their cousins’, but their fists are just as large. They gain 2 slam attacks that deal 1d6 damage each. This racial trait replaces leathery hide.
Favored Class Options
Stalker: Add +1/4 maneuvers known from the Broken Blade or Thrashing Dragon disciplines. These maneuvers must be at least one level below the highest level of maneuvers the stalker can learn.
Bloodforge, © 2017, Dreamscarred Press, LLC; Author: Matthew Ryan Medeiros, Jade Ripley, based on material by Owen K.C. Stephens