Of Ooos And Ahhhs: Of Orcs And Men Looks Quite Good

Not pictured: men.

It’s been more than a year since we last peeked into the Cyanide-and-Spiders-filled cauldron that’s cooking up Of Orcs And Men, and that’s a bit of a shame. If you ask me, it’s looking rather promising – though information on combat, skills, etc is unfortunately scarce at the moment. But, at the very least, the central concept – humans are dumb jerks and you, an orc, must battle back against their oppressive, racism-steeped regime – sounds like it could provide the ingredients for a very special dish: a fantasy RPG that’s actually unique. You’ll find two impressive-looking trailers beyond the break, after which you are cordially invited to join me in heel-clicking-centric merriment and light discussion. There will, however, be no refreshments, because humans are jerks who don’t deserve liquids.

Much like Cyanide’s Game Of Thrones RPG, Of Orcs And Men looks to derive most of its moment-to-moment thrills from a two-character dynamic. This time, though, the heroes are a bit more… diverse.

“The game starts you in the role of an elite Orc warrior, deeply involved in the war against their persecutors, Humankind. You have been sent on a dangerous mission that could change the course of the war: kill the one responsible for all the bloodshed and mobilization of the human race to destroy the green-skinned people – the Emperor himself. Joining you in your mission is a Goblin, an assassin and master of stealth, who complements your Orc’s brute strength in battle.”

Both characters seem to be a bit more than traditional fantasy archetypes would suggest, though. The orc, Arkail, can switch between all-out, rage-powered Hulk offense and a more damage-spongey defensive stance. His goblin cohort, meanwhile, is better for stealth, poisoning, and infiltrating locations Arkail’s a bit too much of an eight-foot-tall muscle mountain to reach.

It’s set to storm our walls this September, so that’s exciting. For now, though, I plan on taping a “No Humans Allowed” sign to my treefort. Because seriously? Ewwww.


  1. golem09 says:

    September? Is there a masterplan to publish all games of 2012 in my semester holidays? Not that I would mind…

    • TechnicalBen says:

      I’m guessing for one reason or another no one expects there to be a 2013. So may as well release the games ASAP… unless your Ubisoft. ;)

  2. jplayer01 says:

    Sweet. Finally a non-human-centric RPG with orcs that actually look impressive/good.

    • Tusque D'Ivoire says:

      I have to agree, somehow these orks look much more orkish than most that I’ve seen in a long time

    • Njordsk says:

      My thoughts yeah. Finally I can bash the human race playing a green mountain of muscles.

      Lacks gameplay though. It’s cyanide after all.

  3. Drake Sigar says:

    If they can continue the quality of writing they had for Game of Thrones, it’s going to be fantastic.

  4. Knight117 says:

    If I hear one utterance of ‘ARKAIL SMASH’, I’m going to pretend it’s a Hulk game, and that is that.

  5. Jimbo says:

    Multi-character RPGs (Game of Thrones style) have stacks of potential. Can’t help but feel that a character on each side of the conflict would have been the more interesting option here though.

    • DigitalParadox says:

      Agreed. When I read “two-character dynamic” I got really excited for the prospect of switching between an orc warrior fighting for his clan’s survival, and some human military officer or one of those inquisitor-like fellows trying to bring culture to these savages by force. I guess a goblin assassin is kinda cool too though.

    • Jenks says:

      Never a good idea to bring up Halo here, but my favorite campaign of that series for this very reason was Halo 2. Swapping back and forth between Master Chief and the Arbiter, seeing both sides of the conflict, I thought kept it interesting.

      *GoT spoilers*

      I really enjoyed GoT as well, with Mors’ and Alestar’s relationship being the opposite; they came together as old friends, and ended up… not friends.

  6. The Hammer says:

    Been waiting for this one for so long now! It was originally given a Spring 2012 release date, and when that milestone passed without comment, I began to get worried.

    As a huge fan of orcs, of goblins, and of party-based RPGs, this seems like my IDEAL game.


  7. kaoswielder says:

    Of Hulks and men :P

  8. Bhazor says:

    So a fantasy version of Incoming: Forces then?

    link to gog.com

    • Jay says:

      Nothing says “well, it came with my new graphics card, it’d be rude not to play it” quite like the Incoming series.

  9. Mordsung says:

    As an admitted Ork-o-phile, this game looks like someone reached into my brain and designed a game specifically for me.

    I will buy this game, all the DLC that is ever released for it, and I will hug it before bed each night.

    • Keyrock says:

      I’m like you, whenever I have the option to play an Orc, or even a Half-Orc, that’s what I play. It’s like they designed this game specifically for us.

  10. TsunamiWombat says:

    Glad to see this game isn’t deadbooked, though I would like to see more actual gameplay. Also, obligatory WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH

  11. frChuck says:

    Very very very talented developper….. founded like shit (it’s easy to see that).

    They should try kickstarter and kick off their shitty old bad-publisher-based business model.

    • Shuck says:

      Unfortunately the amount of money most Kickstarter campaigns manage to raise is equivalent to a rounding error on a publisher deal (i.e. not nearly enough money to make a game like this).

      • frChuck says:

        Here is the error. This is the error they made.

        Because in the end, I can ensure you that, for the moment, they had perceived 1/10 what a good kickstarter campaign can bring them. Even good student had much, like say, hawken’s one or things like that. So they have just enough to make a video and test the traction. And they dream that a publisher will furnish them a good deal. But they are already under-founded, so their video will not make that good (their videos are not really compelling, even, let’s say, hawken’s ones were better) and then they will not have a good publisher deal. And they will endup making modeling and code for other studios.

        Talent waste. But fortunately, it’s almost the end of this circle of doom. Talent are far more unleashed today than 5 years ago. Because they can now have an engine and good founding easily.

        • Shuck says:

          Kickstarter, which raises the most money, is, first of all, for American citizens only. Second, the amount of money raised by the largest Kickstarter campaign isn’t enough to make a studio game like this. It just isn’t. The amount of money they’d be likely to raise would be even less, and “not enough money” is “not enough money.”
          Kickstarter is useful for small indie games where the developers are willing to mostly finance the game themselves, but it’s completely useless for something like this.

  12. yazman says:

    I fucking love Orcs/Orks and all the different interpretations of them, and I love RPGs, but based on the trailers and all the reporting of this game it sounds like it’ll be an action type game like Diablo and if it is then I won’t really want to play this game.

    I hope I’m wrong though.

    • ImAUnicorn says:

      It doesn’t look even close to being like a diablo game. It’s more likely going to be like Game of Thrones, which was extremely mediocre gameplay, so this game doesn’t interest me.

  13. zeroskill says:

    Looks a little bit good.

  14. mouton says:

    I kind of hoped it would be in Warhammer setting.

    Also, Cyanide? Weren’t they an iffy developer?

  15. Keukeu says:

    zog zog

  16. Iskariot says:

    Seeing those beautiful Orc models I can’t help but wish the Skyrim Orcs would look like that.

  17. Jupiah says:

    I love, and by love I mean sadly shake my head in unsurprised annoyance, that despite the setting being all dark and gritty and as realistic as possible for a magic world with orcs and goblins, the only female enemies that appear in the trailer have just ridiculous amounts of cleavage showing. Useful and concealing leather armor on their legs, arms and shoulders, but the entire chest is completely exposed.

    Perfect outfit for fighting orcs, obviously. Everyone knows they’re scared and confused by the sight of breasts. *sigh*

    • c4llum says:

      Uhhh what about the woman wearing the full-body robes at the end of the second video? i mean god don’t overreact it’s not like this is catwoman level objectification

    • bill says:

      We haven’t seen much yet, but the female characters shown so far don’t seem to be hyper sexualised. At least by game standards.

  18. Jake says:

    Is it unique? From what I gather after skim reading a zillion quest texts I thought it was the basic plot of Warcraft too. I was certainly an awesome orc battling dumb humans.

    • Barrow says:

      It is; so not exactly “unique”, but at least it doesn’t fall into standard fantasy tropes.

  19. Shooop says:

    Color me interested. Nice to see this kind of story from another lens like The Witcher does.

  20. JayeRandom says:

    This reminds me of Kirill Eskov’s The Last Ringbearer (freely available English translation here) which is excellent and a must-read for anyone who’s ever read or watched Lord of the Rings.

  21. Davie says:

    Holy crap, I’m excited about a Cyanide game. That’s new.

    This looks genuinely interesting–that bit where the goblin slits the throat of what appears to be an unarmed priest made me realize that most games would have you do that to an orc character without a second thought. They might be able to do some really clever things with switching the “dungeons” from grimy caves full of monsters to castles full of humans.

  22. Tuco says:

    It may look quite good, but they are Cyanide.
    They are like Kryptonite for good design decisions.

  23. Sandiiman says:

    Goal of the game is to have a farm with rabbits, and be shot by George?

  24. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    Wait – I thought Orcs Must Die?

  25. Alaric says:

    “Such and such are racists, let’s kill them all!” Hmm… where have I heard that one before?

  26. c4llum says:

    That bastard killed Ezio

  27. Atrak says:

    I am really hoping the gameplay/combat is a lot better than the Game of Thrones game they made.

  28. danphango says:

    it would be great if this were an open-world type game with multiple options for approaching each objective. imagine having to breach a castle – you could both storm the gate and force your way in, or the goblin could sneak in in the middle of the night, kill the guards and open the gate for Arkail so he could smash everyone in their beds. or somewhere in between, where each player is off doing something on their own that the other one wouldn’t be able to do. there seems to be a lot of potential here.
    not too optimistic though, this being Cyanide :(

    • marcusfell says:

      No, it wouldn’t be great like that. Try using your imagination next time.

  29. Sea-Bear says:

    Sooo… we’re not gonna talk about the “Of Mice and Men” reference? o:

  30. Phasma Felis says:

    So they made a video game of John Wick’s Orkworld tabletop RPG? Cool.