Born of an unlikely union between an orc and a human, the Half-Orc Ranger embodies the duality of their lineage.
Cloaked in garments fashioned from the finest forest fabrics, the Half-Orc Ranger navigates the wilderness with uncanny skill, like a ghostly wisp slipping through the underbrush.
Armed with a bow that seems to whisper secrets of forgotten battles and a quiver filled with arrows honed with elven craftsmanship, the Half-Orc Ranger’s aim is unparalleled.
In most cases Half-Orc Rangers are outcasts, protectors who do not want to be seen, only heard of. Even so, there are rare instances where one of them would become loyal to true friends.
Creating a Half-Orc Ranger
Throughout the years, humans and orcs have made many alliances, often ending in interracial marriages, birthing Half-Orcs – inheriting the best of both worlds.
Half-Orcs tend to become mighty warriors, often becoming chiefs of Orc tribes due to their human blood’s intelligence advantage and orcish strength.
Other Half-Orcs travel the world, living among humans and other civilized races to prove their worth. Many of these Half-Orcs end up as mighty adventurers, wealthy smiths, or unmatched imperial soldiers who climbed the ranks due to their barbaric fighting style.
|Hair (Including their Beard)||Orcs can grow the hair (and color) of their human counterpart, which also affects their beards|
|Eyes||Ranging from dark gray to pale, almost white|
|Nose||Orcish or human-like noses, depending on what physical aspects define them|
|Mouth||Extended jaw showing prominent orcish teeth|
Note: These features can be slightly changed or modified if some variations don’t fit your character.
Half-Orcs don’t have subraces as they’re not as widespread as many other races. They don’t tend to band together as they see their mother races as their true families, finding comfort with them or abandoning their heritage and walking a new path.
However, there is a Variant Half-Orc bearing the Mark of Finding, a mark only given to Half-Orcs and humans.
Variant Half-Orc: Mark of Finding – Mark of Finding Half-Orcs are very wise, often living in the wilderness and knowing all of its secrets.
Some also live deep underground, either becoming chiefs to a nest of goblins or destroying them to create their own home.
Ranger Class Features
|Hit Dice||1d10 per Ranger level|
|HP at level 1||10 + Constitution modifier|
|HP at Higher levels||1d10 (or 6) + Constitution modifier per Ranger level after level 1|
|Armor||Light armor, Medium armor, Shields|
|Weapons||Simple weapons, Martial weapons|
|Saving Throws||Strength, Dexterity|
|Skills||Choose three – Animal Handling, Athletics, Insight, Investigation, Nature, Perception, Stealth, and Survival|
Upon reaching level 3, Rangers can choose to emulate the training and ideals of a specific conclave, granting them certain conclave-only features.
Beast Master – Becoming a Beast Master is to be the embodiment of friendship between the civilized races and the beasts throughout the world.
You’ll be united with a beast, focusing on fighting monstrous foes that threaten civilization and the wilderness as Ranger and beast.
Join the Beast Master conclave means committing yourself to this very simple ideal as you establish a partnership with an animal, becoming its companion and friend.
Fey Wanderer – Fey Wanderers are surrounded by the mystique of the fey, which could’ve come from various events such as eating a shining fruit, swimming in a magic spring, or acquiring a boon from an archfey.
How you acquired your magic doesn’t matter, all that matters is that you’re now a Fey Wanderer, a Ranger representing both the fey and the mortal realms.
You are filled with joy enough to brighten the hearts of those around you while also possessing great martial powers which strike fear in your enemies. You are the embodiment of the fey, their mirth, and their fury.
Gloom Stalker – Gloom Stalkers feel at home in the darkest places in the world, often found in primeval forests, deep under the earth, in gloomy alleyways, or anywhere else the light dims.
While most people enter these areas with trepidation, Gloom Stalkers venture bravely into the darkness, destroying threats before they can reach the outside world.
Many Gloom Stalkers can often be found in the Underdark, but they are willing to go to any place where evil hides in the shadows.
Horizon Walker – Rangers known as Horizon Walkers guard the world against threats that originate from distant planes or those who seek to destroy the mortal realm with fierce magic.
You’ll often hear of them seeking out planar portals, keeping watch over them, and even venturing into the Inner and Outer Planes to pursue their foes.
Horizon Walkers are great allies to many forces found in the multiverse – especially benevolent dragons, elementals, and fey – that work together to preserve life and the order of each plane.
Hunter – Hunters seek to master weapons in order to protect civilization from terrors that live in the wilderness.
These Rangers are taught specialized fighting techniques to use against these threats, ranging from terrifying dragons, hordes of orcs, towering giants, and rampaging ogres.
Monster Slayer – Monsters Slayer Rangers have dedicated themselves to hunting down wielders of grim magic and creatures of the night. They’ll often seek out dragons, evil fey, fiends, vampires, and other magical threats to vanquish.
Monster Slayers were trained in supernatural techniques for the sole reason of destroying and overcoming the powers of these monsters, becoming experts at defeating and unearthing mighty, mystical foes.
Swarmkeeper – Swarmkeepers are Rangers who feel a deep connection to the environment around them, reaching out through the magical connection they have to the world and bonding with swarms of nature spirits.
Many Swarmkeepers are hermits or outcasts, keeping mostly to themselves and attending to their swarms rather than taking on the burdens and discomforts of others.
Other Swarmkeepers enjoy building bustling communities they see as mutually beneficial to all those who form a part of their swarm.
Drakewarden – Drakewardens have their link to the natural world embodied by a draconic spirit, with the physical form of a drake.
As your power grows, so does your drake, turning from a meager four-legged companion to a majestic winged creature, strong and large enough to be ridden. The Drakewarden will also gain powerful draconic powers.
Combining Class With Race
Determining Your Subclass
Choosing your ideal subclass is subjective, but if your objective is optimization, try understanding what your character wants to do and what stats fit best with their subclass.
|Horizon Walker||Defender/Striker/Utility Caster|
Half-Orcs only have one variant subrace, which makes it more difficult to optimize if it doesn’t have the adequate ability scores that your class needs.
If you want to become a Ranger, it’ll be best if you pick the Mark of Finding Half-Orc variant, as it has a Wisdom (2) and Constitution (1) bonus.
Even though you won’t get any Dexterity bonuses, the Wisdom bonuses assist your spellcasting modifier, and the Constitution gives you some bonus HP.
Your Half-Orc Ranger needs a unique background that will affect its choices, as well as the way it sees the world and what it wants to achieve.
Start by asking yourself some basic questions: Where were they born, and where did they come from? Do they have any goals, bonds, or ideals, and what are their flaws? Where do they belong in social circles and society as a whole? What inspires them?
Place of Birth
Think of the environment a Half-Orc Ranger grew up in and how it affected them physically and emotionally and eventually shaped their view of the world.
Try to make their place of birth and upbringing correspond with their personality traits, ideals, bonds, and flaws – this will truly bring their character alive.
Note: The birthplaces of races are usually mentioned in the Player’s Handbook or some of its expansion books.
Characteristics and Personality Traits
Half-Orc Rangers use their Orcish strength coupled with their Human ingenuity to care for nature and protect it.
Often slaying large beasts that threaten the ecosystem or stopping armies who aim to take control of the forest’s natural resources and cover.
Half-Orc Ranger Examples:
- I’m always picking things up, absently fiddling with them, and sometimes accidentally breaking them.
- I have a lesson for each situation drawn from observing nature.
Ideals, Bonds, and Flaws
Ideal – Express one ideal that is a driving force in a Half-Orc Ranger’s life – their conviction, ethical principle, and moral standing (probably something about nature).
When I become deathly hungry, my eyes turn white, sometimes blinding me in the process.
Bonds – Think of a single bond that your Half-Orc Ranger has to an event, person, or place. Bonds will tie them to their background and can inspire bravery or stimulate memories driving them against their ideals.
My weapons are symbols of my past life. I must carry them so that I will never forget my roots.
Flaws – Choose a single flaw for a Half-Orc Ranger – their unhealthy compulsion, greatest fear/weakness, or most vile vice.
I have a ‘tell’ that reveals when I’m lying.
Inspiration is used by the DM to reward you for playing according to your bond, personality traits, ideals, and flaw.
I must keep those too weak to fend for themselves safe, even if I have to sacrifice myself to do so.
Note: If you’re struggling to create your background or just don’t want to think, the Player’s Handbook has well-thought-through backgrounds that you can use for your character or use as a mold.
Supplies and Gear
Rangers start with the following equipment, together with the equipment from their background. Choosing equipment based on your situation and your character’s proficiencies is the easiest way to go about things.
- (a) Scale mail or (b) Leather armor
- (a) Two shortswords or (b) Two simple melee weapons
- (a) Dungeoneer’s pack or (b) Explorer’s pack
- Longbow and quiver of 20 arrows
You can decide how your character came about these goods – whether they stole, inherited, or purchased them some time back – adding to your character’s background.
Note: By using your starting wealth, you can buy your own equipment (5d4 x 10 GP for Rangers).
Half-Orcs aren’t usually very fond of becoming Rangers due to their monstrous strength, but there are those who prefer its magical touch and link to nature.
These Half-Orcs usually fill roles like Scouts or Strikers, as they are very agile and stealthy but deal high damage with their arrows.
A party looking for a great marksman to cover them from a distance should try recruiting a Half-Orc Ranger.
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