1. Pyraeus
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    Pyraeus Member

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    World where Humans don't rule?

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by Pyraeus, May 16, 2012.

    So I wanted to get away from the usual scenario where Humans are the most powerful race, or "top dog" in terms of general effectiveness and resources. I want it to be different in that Humans aren't the best. I thought for a moment there I might have Elves and Dwarves, but then I thought "It's too predictable, and it's been done to hell already" so then I thought "What races could I use that aren't usual?" then I thought "Orcs could be good, or something similar" After that series of thoughts, I decided to make it a bit different. From what I've seen, Orcs are usually treated as beasts by Humans, or have been made slaves etc. "Why not turn it around?" I thought. "To Orcs, Humans are lower beings" Also, these Orcs aren't like Orcs from Lord of the Rings, more like Orcs from World of Warcraft-that's an example, they don't look 100% like that.

    So what do you guys think about this? It wouldn't have to be Orcs, it could be Ogres, or Satyrs, or some other race which isn't usually in charge-not Demons, Humans being under the control of demons is too predictable. Demons ruled over by Humans would be an interesting concept, but then I don't want my Humans being on top, I want them being underneath another race, at least for a time.

    What races would you suggest? I'd rather leave out Elves and Dwarves, but I might put them in if I could come up with a concept that was interesting. I like the thought of using Orcs, becuase they are portrayed as being intelligent (outside of Tokiens works, that is)
     
  2. Metus
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    Metus Senior Member

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    Satyrs sound like an interesting choice. I can't think of many books that give Satyrs a role at all, let alone an important one. It's one of the lesser known of the fantasy races, which also gives you a lot of room to expand on their society without angering fans who think that a certain race should behave a certain way.
     
  3. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Morlocks
     
  4. Lazy
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    Lazy Banned

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    It's been done, especially in sci-fi. And in worlds with elves, humans are never the "top dog," almost by definition.

    Anyway, why do you want a world where humans are not at the top of the food chain? How does it serve your story? It's not like humans being enslaved by orcs (which are essentially humans with a different appearance) is too different than blacks being enslaved by whites, anyway... it will only be interesting if your story and characters and prose are interesting.
     
  5. Pyraeus
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    Pyraeus Member

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    "Satyrs sound like an interesting choice. I can't think of many books that give Satyrs a role at all, let alone an important one. It's one of the lesser known of the fantasy races, which also gives you a lot of room to expand on their society without angering fans who think that a certain race should behave a certain way."

    I'll start planning it out. I haven't written about Satyrs yet, so it will be something new to try out. I still like the idea of there being Orcs-I can maybe include them somehow. Maybe one area is ruled by the Satyrs, and the other by the Orcs? Or maybe Orcs are enslaved by the Satyrs too? A few extra thoughts/comments on that would be appreciated-not that I don't appreaciate what you have done so far. I'm really liking what you're saying.

    "Morlocks"

    I hadn't heard of them till you said that there. That would be an interesting race to use.
     
  6. MissRis
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    MissRis Contributing Member

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    Yeah, I feel like this is a common trope in fantasy worlds. It's not that you can't do it, especially if you pick a random creature that doesn't usually get a lot of attention. But it's like Muggles versus wizards in Harry Potter. Even though muggles don't know about wizards, muggles aren't top of the food chain.
     
  7. CrimsonReaper
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    CrimsonReaper Active Member

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    I get the impression Pyraeus means a world where humanity is openly ruled over by another species or at least is a marginal species with no real power. Not like Harry Potter at all, where the "mighty" wizards are few in number and live in seclusion from the real world (a few cops with guns would have ended the whole Voldemort thing way quicker than Harry did). You could always reverse the roles of orcs and humans as seen in typical fantasy.

    Orcs usually come in two flavors:
    -Tolkien's orcs are not disorganized rabble. They are organized killers and meat-shields. Orc society in the Lord of the Rings was deliberately shaped into a war-machine, with an emphasis on conformity and expendability. The orcs were shock troops meant to destroy the world of men and orcs, not elites or a serious attempt at replacing the other races with something new. Take the scene where a group of humans that serve Sauron refuse to part way for a group of orcs. All serve the same master, but the humans clearly think themselves naturally the orcs' betters. Pysically most are swarthy and ugly (by Northern European standards, as Tolkien noted) and weaker on an individual basis than other races. They rely on numbers to overcome enemies, and most are portaryed as unhonorable if not cowardly
    -Warcraft orcs: Typically these are shamanistic and tribal. An individual orc will usually be stronger than a human and have a code of honor. A good orc is worth four or five of those "pink-skins" in their cowardly armor. And they are green (because Warcraft was originally going to be a game of Warhammer, where orcs are green and much closer to the Tolkien mold but things changed).

    Why not use both societies, with humanity united into a warlike society that stresses mass tactics and weapons. The orcs, by comparison, have fewer numbers but fight far more ferociously. Perhaps mankind is making one last bid and retaking their holy/ancestral land (or just a really nice trading port) and the outnumbered orc defenders have to stop them.

    Now go write it. And there is a fantasy series starring a squad of orcs (that actually mixes the Tolkien and Warcraft flavors) you might want to check out. Orcs: First Blood is the omnibus of the first trilogy in the US. Not sure if it has the same name elsewhere.
     
  8. indy5live
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    indy5live Active Member

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    Put a unique twist on heaven and make it your new realm. That's not done often. You die as a superior being, a human on earth, and arrive in a realm that is ruled by gods and angels. Who cares what human perception of heaven is currently, no one really knows what it's like until you get there, and it could very well be a scary, slave like environment where we have to give everything we have up to the gods and worship them. Of course this might upset some people that forget its fiction and take it personally.
     
  9. Pyraeus
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    "I get the impression Pyraeus means a world where humanity is openly ruled over by another species or at least is a marginal species with no real power."

    Yeah, kind of like Lucien and the Lycans in Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. By "topdog" I mean that they are the most commonly found, most diverse, able to do well in any form of trade they want. I want to make it so that they aren't found absolutely everywhere, I'm more interested in using non humans as characters. The main character is a human but I have plans for him to have (friendly/amiable) interactions with Orcs and what not. The idea would be that it wouldn't be all the Orcs etc. that treat Humans like dirt-just like how blacks are only hated by a certain percentage of people;it isn't universal. The way I'm planning it in the story is that Orcs make for better masters than Satyrs becuase Orcs don't really care about your views or what you do in your spare time as long as you fufill your quota, while the Satyrs work you to death (near non-stop, barely enough time to eat and sleep)
     

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