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Old 06-05-2003, 05:47 PM   #2
Rumil
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Join Date: Aug 2002
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Hi Hans,

I think you're correct in saying that the vast majority of orcs were 'weaker' in combat than men (and considerably inferior to elves of course). It's noted that some few orc chieftains or Uruk-Hai are said to be 'nearly man-high' as an indication that these are the largest of their kind. It's implied that there were low-status orcs which were even less useful in combat, the Snagas.

Also Denethor questions the fate of Boromir, not expecting him to have been killed by mere orcs. However, Pippin has a good point when he says that any man may be killed by a single arrow (something that D+D-ers should note!). This indicates that the real danger was being heavily outnumbered by orcs. However, in the first age, the Green Elf Denethor was defeated by the orcs of Morgoth because his forces were un-armoured and ill-equipped for war whereas Morgoth equipped his troops with weapons of iron and steel.

Other points are that the orcs were afraid of sunlight, so less useful in open battle, but had good night vision so were dangerous after dark. Their 'home ground' would have been caverns and tunnels, which would have presented more of a challenge for the human warriors.

(as for rocs, well that's an entirely different kettle of fish)
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[ June 05, 2003: Message edited by: Rumil ]
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